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I've been trialling GTasks on the Android platform (an interface to Google Tasks) but many of its reviewers have been angered by it either duplicating or wiping out their tasks.

So I'm searching for a way to backup my Tasks before I populate them too heavily. Search results so far keep on returning "there is no way". Are the actual tasks protected in the tasks API or is there a method?

4 Answers 4

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You need to use a third-party service called Google Tasks Porter. I never used it, so I don't know how it works, but Cnet has a nice article that describes the procedure.

  1. Point your browser to Google Tasks Porter.
  2. The first time you use it, you need to give it permission to access your Google account, which takes several clicks. (If you use multiple Google accounts with multiple Tasks lists, you will have to approve each one individually.)
  3. To start exporting, you'll need to take a snapshot. Click the big button on the left and you should shortly see a list of snapshots, which at this point should contain just one.
  4. You can export to HTML, iCal, Outlook, and Remember the Milk formats by clicking the appropriate link beneath the snapshot info.
  5. Each task manager has its own import tool, but all you need to do is point it to the file you just created. It may take some time, especially if you've got a long list, but it should work out well.
  6. To start importing items into Google Tasks, just click the big Import Tasks button on the main screen.
  7. From the import screen, you'll need to create a name for the new list, and choose a file to import from either Outlook or iCal. Of course, you will need to use the export tool for either of those programs to create the file Google Tasks Porter will use. Once you start, it should just take a short time for your new Google Tasks list to be created.
  8. That's it! This is a pretty simple, straightforward tool that should make life easier for you if you want to give a new task manager a whirl without having to manually recreate your to-do list.
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    I tried it, it looked promising but gave errors during the backup. Looking at their forum, it appears to be broken and no longer being supported.
    – jontyc
    Commented Feb 23, 2012 at 22:07
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I found in the support forum for the service supplied by Alex another service which appears to be active in development at https://tasks-backup.appspot.com.

Sadly it still gave errors for me but may work for others.

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If you are happy to use the command line (and python), you can use this: https://github.com/edtechhub/gtasks. There are some outstanding issues, in particular this https://github.com/edtechhub/gtasks/issues/15, but overall the tool is functional and works well.

gtasks authenticate
gtasks backup

It's under development, so your mileage will vary!

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There is a dedicated tool from Google to backup your Tasks data. This was probably added in the 10 years since this question was asked. To use it:

  • go to Google Takeout
  • select what kind of data you want to back up. If you only want your Google Tasks data, hit Deselect All, then scroll down and hit the checkbox for Google Tasks (or use the browsers find function, the list is long)
  • hit Next Step and choose a destination, e.g. zip file to your email

For a list of what sorts of data is included in the backup, see this Google Support Doc

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