MEGA "Import Before Download" - Still a Thing?

While I believe it was once like this, I doubt this is still the case.

Lately I’ve shared a few large files via mega, earning quite a few clicks from others. I have however not seen a shortage in my account’s transfer quota. Of course, this could be that everyone is well-behaved and every single one of them imported the files before download.

But then, I’ve also been downloading stuff. There is one time I downloaded a large file from another user’s link without importing it first. I have, however, failed to download the file at 5GB, and is prompt to upgrade my account to resume download. I then found my ip’s transfer quota has been depleted and is unable to download any other files hosted and shared through MEGA

This leads me to suspect that MEGA has changed the rule how transfer quota is handled and it’s now counted towards the downloading user rather than the host who shared the files.

If you had similar experience or could test this under a controlled setting, please share.



I just tried a test by downloading one of the files in my account from a fresh account I just created and it didn’t seem to take up any of my transfer quota. I’m on the same IP address though so it might not be a fully reliable test.

The transfers section of the settings includes this:

So I’m inclined to think that it’s still possible for your transfer quota to be used up by other users downloading links, although it looks like the content owner can control how much. I’d say it’s still worth importing before downloading just in case.

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Thanks, that explains it!

I’m on a free account which is perhaps why I’m not affected by others’ downloading. I’m not sure if it’s enabled by default for a pro user?

Oh yeah maybe… I’m on a pro account and what’s shown in that screenshot is the default since I never changed it.

Try downloading this link and I’ll tell you whether my transfer amount changes :stuck_out_tongue:

Downloaded. If I guess it right, it should cost you 292.5 MB quota isn’t it? :grin:

I’d used 17.57 before, now I’ve used 17.94, so around that…maybe it’s rounded somehow or someone else downloaded something. Either way, it definitely takes up some of the hoster’s quota. Mystery solved! :smiley:

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Confirmed, my quota is set to 25% and I have never touched the setting.

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Thanks everyone’s input! To sum things up:

Downloading files directly from the host’s link will charge your own transfer quota, which is unless the host is a pro user, and has the “share quota” setting turned on.

For Pro users, if you would not like to have others depleting your transfer quota, set “Grant your transfer quota to users downloading your links” to 0% in settings under “Transfers” tab.

Free users should have no worries as they cannot share transfer quota with others.


I think it’s worth adding to that summary that as a general rule, people should continue to import before downloading as a courtesy, since many pro users don’t know about that setting and probably have it set to the default of 25% (thus draining their quota when you download directly)


Thanks everyone for investigating this!


I always try to import but every now and then you’re slightly distracted and forget etc. Good to know on those odd occasions it’s not going to negatively affect the host.

Thanks for the work.

No, what we found is that it definitely does negatively affect the host - it uses up their bandwidth (downloading a 4GB file will take up 1GB of their bandwidth). People should import before downloading, even when not explicitly asked to.

The exception is if the host has manually gone into their settings and disallowed bandwidth sharing, but I imagine most people don’t know that setting exists (I didn’t before doing this test) :stuck_out_tongue:


Thanks for this thread, new user here, and was wondering why I kept seeing “import before download” when Mega links are given

If you are a free user, and you use a browser to download files, you should know that when you download a file that’s bigger than 5GB, Mega will interrupt your download after 5GB (or sooner if you already downloaded files that same day.) If you use Chrome (or Chrome-based) browser you can resume the download after you wait 8 hours, leave your browser open and don’t close the page. But if you use Firefox, there is no possibility to resume and you wasted your bandwidth.

I use Ffiefox on Win 10 and the downloads always resume. This is via the Megasync app.

I do this all the time as I am a greedy downloader. Well I have 15 Tb anyway and a lot cane from Mega!