WhatsApp Database Folder | Can I delete msgstore crypt files?


👤 Diwas Poudel    🕒 Jan 17 2022    📁 Fix    📜 0 comment

Whatsapp is a well-known social media platform for messaging and Voice over IP (VoIP) service owned by Facebook, Inc. Many people use Whatsapp. Many active WhatsApp users claim that the size of the app and WhatsApp folder is increasing and that it is running out of memory due to a lack of space on their smartphones.

This could happen because the Android DCIM folder contains a special folder, such as the database folder, which will continue to grow in size. And you want to delete its contents, but first, you need to figure out what it is and whether it is worth deleting. So you've arrived at the right place. Everything you need to know will be revealed to you by me.

What is WhatsApp Database Folder?

WhatsApp Database folder is one of the encrypted WhatsApp folders that may contain all backup info, contact information, status, timestamps, attached file(like audio, video, image)info, message content, chat lists and other necessary information that you chat in your WhatsApp, and these are saved locally for 7 days in 7 crypt files. The older backup files will get deleted automatically so at a time there will be 7 files inside Download Folder. On the basis of your usage WhatsApp Database size increases. Its size depends on the number of chats you did.

Since installing WhatsApp on your phone, any messages you've sent or received have been encrypted and preserved in the WhatsApp Database folder. The database will contain seven encrypted crypt files.

Whatsapp creates a local backup and is created by default at 2:00 AM(might vary) every morning when the WhatsApp usage is minimum. These files are backup files and when you perform backup then Whatsapp internally reads contents of those encrypted files and other media files and saved to your Google Drive account when you want to backup your chats.

This encrypted file will be in the following format :

msgstore-YYYY-MM-DD.1.db.crypt* 

and 

msgstore.db.crypt*

Where 

YYYY Year
mm Month
dd date
crypt* crypt denotes encryption version.  Here * can be  9,10,12,14

You can see a sample as below:

whatsapp-database-file-content
fig. WhatsApp Database crypt files

Sometimes you will find a gap in the number of crypt files.

So, the WhatsApp message backup process will access these WhatsApp database files in the processing of backup in Google Drive. 

Also Read: What is WhatsApp Technology Stack?

Example:msgstore-2022-1-15.db.crypt14 : This file contains backup of chat made on date 15. These files are used for automatic chat and contact recovery after Whatsapp reinstallation.

Now let's look at the structure of msgstore.db file:

msgstoredb-data-table
fig. msgstore.db database structure (source)

msgstore.db is a database and it has various tables in it like status_list,sqlite_sequence, receipts, props, message, message_thumbnails,chat_list, and many more as shown above.

what is crypt14?

WhatsApp has started using CRYPT14 files in WhatsApp version 2.21.8.17, which was released in May 2021.crypt14 is more secure than crypt12 and the previous version.

This database folder is saved in a location:

  • Internal Storage > Android > Media > com.whatsapp > WhatsApp > Databases

If you are using an SD Card and your data are stored there then you might see at location :

  • sdcard > WhatsApp >Databases
Also read: How to upload/send high-quality photos, videos on WhatsApp?

Why database is encrypted?

So that users are unable to read its content easily. To prevent malicious entities from decrypting stolen crypt files, WhatsApp updates the encryption used to create the files on a regular basis.

This folder is an important folder and can be easily accessed to this location by the victim if he/she can access your phone . They can steal it and decrypt it and see all messaging history.

Why local backup of database?

This is done to provide a fast response to the user of his/her old day of a few days and reduce the server hits for those requests.

Can I delete database folder files?

The contents of the database folder are cipher files that can be erased without affecting your conversations. Your current today chat dialogue may be lost if you recently chatted and removed the most recent cipher file.

WhatsApp will restore the database folder for you if you delete it, and it does it almost every day. All of your recent chats will be saved in one database file.

There are two types of files inside it. one without a date and the other 6 with a date like this.

  • msgstore.db.crypt14: Latest Chat Database. If you delete this file your today chat history will get deleted.
  • msgstore-YYYY-MM-DD.1.db.crypt14: Backups of the chat database. If you delete this file then your chat will not get affected. It is actually a backup of msgstore.db.crypt14 file.

Your android phone and WhatsApp easily allow you to delete those files without any warning. If you have deleted all the files then your today chat history may get deleted. So, except last recent one(without timestamp) file, you can delete other files without any problem as these data are already synced. with the server and saved in a remote database.

whatsapp-database-file-content-with-and-without-timestamp

What happens if you clear WhatsApp Cache Data?

When you clear your WhatsApp cache data then the content inside the database folder is also deleted.

How do you access the WhatsApp databases folder from your PC?

Ans: Android only allows you access to a specific folder like a database. For the desktop version of WhatsApp, we do have a database but this database does not contain information related to chats and contacts.WhatsApp database folder is located inside %userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\WhatsApp\databases as shown below

database-whatsapp-folder-in-windows11

Note: It is not advisable to delete a folder. 

How can we delete the crypt database file?

Ans: First select a row of crypt file you want to delete and then click on the delete button located at the bottom of the screen.

Why my local Whatsapp is not located in whatsapp/databases?

Ans :Whatsapp has changed its local database location from /WhatsApp/Databases to /Android/media/com.whatsapp/WhatsApp/Databases