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This article applies to Code42 for Enterprise version 5.

Code42 Support

Replace your device (version 5.0.X of the CrashPlan app)

This article applies to Code42 for Enterprise version 5.


Replacing a device is the process of one device taking over for another, which is used in circumstances such as:

  • moving a backup to a new device
  • replacing an old device
  • replacing your device's main hard drive
  • recovering after an operating system reinstall

This article describes how to reconnect to the previous device's backup archive, so you avoid repeating the potentially lengthy, initial backup.

These instructions apply to users working at endpoint devices with CrashPlan apps older than version 5.1. They do not include transferring Windows user settings (USMT data).

To work with newer versions of the CrashPlan app, with the administration console, or with USMT data, select the appropriate article from Use Code42 to simplify device migration.


If your new device uses a different operating system than your old device, (for example, you switched from Windows to OS X), see our article on replacing devices with different operating or file systems instead of following the steps below.

New device setup recommendations

When replacing a device, we recommend setting up the new device with the same user name and drive letter that you used on your previous device. If the user name or drive letter on your new device is different than on your old device, you may need to update your file selection to include the new location of your files. Code42 CrashPlan can then synchronize with the destination and continue backing up files that now reside in a new location and have a different file path.

Step 1: Download and install CrashPlan

  1. Download and install the latest version of the CrashPlan app.
  2. Sign in to your existing CrashPlan account.

Step 2: Replace your files

Before you replace a device, you should download all of the files you previously backed up. Any files you don't transfer from your existing backup will be retained as deleted files and are less visible, which could lead to unintentional data loss. Additionally, if the previously backed up files are not downloaded to the device before replacing it, you may have an extended wait to download your files while CrashPlan synchronizes your device with the backup destination.

Before replacing a device, you can use any of the following methods to transfer your original files to your new or re-built device:

  • Download files from the CrashPlan app.
  • Copy or transfer files from the old device to the new device. Some example methods:
    • Copy files with your operating system’s standard tools such as the Finder, Windows Explorer, cp command, or rsync command.
    • Restore files from a Time Machine backup.
    • Transfer files using Windows Easy Transfer.
Download original files to your new user folder
To resume your previous backup as fast as possible, download your files as described in our tutorial on downloading all files to a new computer or drive.

Step 3: Replace your device

Once your files have been downloaded to the new operating system, it's time to replace your device so CrashPlan sees your new device as a continuation of your previous device. When you replace your device, your new device:

  • Is immediately linked to your existing backup settings, file selection, version history, and backup archive
  • Inherits your previous backup archive and attempts to resume backup
  1. On Home, click Replace Device.
    If you don’t see the option to replace device, go to Tools > Replace device (Windows and Linux) or File > Replace device (OS X), and choose Replace device.

Replace device message

  1. Choose an existing device to replace and click OK.
    You are signed out of the CrashPlan app. If you're not sure which device to select, check out these tips.

Choose an existing device to replace

  1. Sign in to the CrashPlan app.
    The Settings Transferred! message displays.
Is my backup starting over?
After replacing a device, a scan launches to compare the contents of your backup file selection against your existing backup archive. It may look like your files are backing up again, and the estimated time to complete may seem unusually long. However, CrashPlan uses data de-duplication to identify what is already backed up. CrashPlan will only back up what has changed (for example, folder paths if files have moved and new files). This is a normal part of CrashPlan's operation, but if you are concerned, there are several ways to confirm that your backup isn't starting over.

Step 4: Update your file selection

Once CrashPlan replaces your device and applies all previous settings to your new device, verify that your file selection includes all of the files you want to back up. If you download your files to a different location (for example, under a folder with a different user name or drive letter), CrashPlan does not automatically detect the change in file paths. To continue your backup, update the file selection to add the locations of your files on the new device (without deselecting the old locations) using the steps below.

Do not deselect old folders
Do not deselect the folders from your old device just yet! Once these file paths are removed from your file selection, there is no way to add them back because the paths do not exist on your new device. Deselecting files deletes them from your backup archive and there is no way to recover them.
  1. From Home, go to Details.
  2. Click Manage Files.
    Note that files from the previous device are marked as File is missing if the files are not downloaded to the original location.
  3. Keep the previous files selected. CrashPlan automatically deletes any files that are deselected.
  4. Add files from your new device to your file selection.
  5. Click Save.

Step 5: Wait for CrashPlan to synchronize your file selection

After you add folders from your new operating system to your file selection, the CrashPlan app synchronizes your file selection. It detects the files you transferred to your computer, and recognizes them as the same files you previously backed up on your old device. Any new files added to your selection are analyzed and prepared for backup.

synchronizing files

Any files that cannot be found during synchronization will be marked as "missing". You can follow these steps to download them.

Step 6: Clean up your file selection (optional)

Changing your file selection
Use caution when changing your file selection:
  • You should only deselect files that you want CrashPlan to permanently and immediately delete from your backup archive.
  • There is no way to recover deselected files.
  • You will lose any historical versions associated with the deselected folders and files. Even if the file verification scan has updated the new location information for your files, any versions associated with the old deselected location will be lost.

If you are not concerned with maintaining historical versions, and you want to clean up your file selection by deleting the old file and folder paths, you must follow these steps exactly in the sequence presented.

  1. From Home, go to Details.
  2. Click Manage Files.
  3. Verify that the new location for the files is included in your backup file selection.
  4. Keep the original file location selected. Do not deselect any files at this time.
  5. Allow your backup status to reach 100% complete.
    During the initial backup after replacing a device, CrashPlan de-duplicates files in your backup with your updated file selection. By allowing CrashPlan to reach 100% complete, you can be certain that the files on your new device remain in your backup without being resent to your destinations.
  6. It is now safe to deselect the old files and folders. You can download these files from their new location on your new computer.
File verification scan
When you change the backup file selection, CrashPlan compares the contents of your backup file selection against your existing backup archive. While on the surface it may look like CrashPlan is starting your backup over, this is a normal part of CrashPlan's operation. There are several ways to confirm that your backup isn't starting over.

If you have any questions about the steps outlined in this tutorial, please contact our Customer Champions for Code42 for Enterprise support before proceeding.