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How are files vs chats retained?
How are files vs chats retained?

Retention for chats and files

Updated this week


  1. Saved indefinitely provided Data Controls -> Chat History is = ON.

  2. Deleted chats are hard deleted from our systems within 30 days, unless they have previously been de-identified and disassociated from your account or we have to keep them for security or legal reasons.

  3. You can not recover chats once you delete them. If you want to remove a chat from being visible in your chat history but retain it in your account, you should use the archive function.

  4. Archived chats are retained just like your unarchived chats. Archiving a chat simply removes it from your chat history sidebar. Archived chats can be found and managed in your ChatGPT Settings.

Please refer to this article to understand how content may be used to improve model performance and the choices that you have.

For details about how to delete/archive chats and how to manage archived chats see How chat retention works in ChatGPT.


  1. Files processed via ADA / Document Analysis, and when chatting with a custom GPT (not uploaded as knowledge in GPT config): Retained for a duration that varies based on your plan.

  2. Images processed via Vision and Files uploaded as knowledge to custom GPT: Retained indefinitely.

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