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WhatsApp crash - Missing Media Files


Sep 25, 2021
My WhatsApp on Android crashed without warning 2 days ago on 23 September.


When I restored WhatsApp from the Google Drive backup (I have always been regularly backing up my messages), none of the chat messages reappeared.

I deleted WhatsApp and reinstalled it. I chose the reinstallation of backup on Google Drive, but it was stuck at 24%. When I ignored it, WhatsApp eventually reinstalled a clean version of all my chat histories (i.e. all conversations were present but empty).

I then deleted WhatsApp again and reinstall it. This time, when it was stuck at 24%, I forced stopped the app, and restarted it.

This appeared to work, and I was able to view all my conversations with the messages.

(BTW, over the past years whenever my WhatsApp crashes inexplicably, I will always encounter the botched restoration, which I will resolve by force stopping WhatsApp when it was stuck and all the media files and messages will be restored, with 1-2 days' loss of messages.)

But now, I realised that ALL the media files (including photos, files, voice recording and videos) that I have accumulated over the years were not restored.

While the photos still show up in their thumbnails in the specific gallery folder, they are essentially now empty 0 B files. When I clicked on them, the systems says that the file is either missing or corrupt.


I accessed my file manager and saw a couple of msgstores files, with the earliest of which being on 23 Sept.

I deleted WhatsApp again to restore the local backup but that option was not available. In the end I had to restore the WhatsApp from the latest backup on Google Drive (while facing the same difficulty of it being stuck described above).

The media files are still missing. Now even the earlier msgstores files on my phone of 23 Sept are also missing. Only 1 msgstore file of 26 September is around.

Please help! I don’t have access to all the WhatsApp media files which are very very dear to me! I have been backing up my WhatsApp files regularly and the missing media files very regularly. There must be some backup residing in my phone somewhere.

Any suggestions will be very much appreciated!


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