Gmail, like any other modern email service, supports file attachments that are then send with the email to the recipient of the email. File attachments need to be uploaded and match certain criteria before they are attached, or added, to the email. It is for instance not possible to send executables directly via Gmail.
Users may get error messages like "Attachment failed" or "Attachment failed. This may be due to a proxy or firewall" when they try to upload attachments to Gmail.
This guide is a collection of fixes and suggestions that may help resolve attachment failed type of messages in Gmail. Attachment failures have different causes, which means that there is no single fix available that resolves all the issues.
I suggest you try each method on its own by returning to the compose mail window and trying to add the attachment. If it works congratulations, you have resolved the attachment failed message. If it does not try the next option in line.
You may want to try the following tips first before you try the advanced tips in the next section.
Make sure you are running the latest version of Adobe Flash. The default attachment uploader is using Flash for the uploading of files. Old Flash versions may no longer be supported by the uploader or return error messages.
Visit this page to check your Flash version and compare it with the latest version of Flash posted on the same page.
Gmail has an option to switch from the advanced uploader to a basic attachment uploader. This is done with a click on the gear icon in the upper right corner of the screen and the selection of Mail Settings. Locate Attachments under the General tab and switch from Advanced attachment features to Basic attachment features there.
Maybe you have access to a second computer, preferably at a different location. You can try to upload attachments on that computer to see if you experience the attachment failed issue there as well.
If you do not you know that it is not account related, but network or computer related. You may then want to check your firewall and security software settings to make sure that they do not interfere during attachment transfers to Gmail.
Using Gmail over the web is only one option for users. You can alternative download and install a desktop email client like Thunderbird or Microsoft Outlook. Configuration is not difficulty, see Setting Up Email Accounts In Thunderbird 3 for help on that.
Please note that it is usually not recommended to disable HTTPS. You may want to give it a try though if you have tried all other options.
You can disable it under the General tabs of your Gmail settings. Locate Browser Connection near the top and switch from Always use HTTPS to Don't Always use HTTPs.
While there is no way of telling that Google will respond to your report, it may be better than giving up right away on resolving the issue.
Head over to the Gmail support contact form and send Google an email, telling them exactly what happens, and what you have tried so far.
There are lots of workarounds available to resolve attachment uploading problems on Gmail. If nothing helps, you may want to consider using a different email service after you have tested that attachment uploading works there.
Have you ever had problems uploading attachments to Gmail? If so, did you resolve those issues?
Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.
We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats (video ads) or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.