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CrashPlan Support

Creating Backup Sets

Applies to:
  • CrashPlan for Home
Need enterprise or small business documentation?
This article is intended for CrashPlan for Home users. For Code42 CrashPlan and CrashPlan for Small Business documentation, read this page on our enterprise support site.


When you first start backing up, CrashPlan backs up everything in your home directory or user folder in a single, default backup set. With backup sets enabled, you can create additional backup sets so that different groups of files can back up to different locations and with different settings.

This tutorial includes important considerations as well as step-by-step instructions for creating backup sets. You can also copy, rename and remove backup sets.


File exclusions

File exclusions specified for any backup set impact all sets backing up to the same destination.

For example, suppose Set A and Set B back up to an external hard drive destination. You create an exclusion for Set A indicating that files ending in .mp3 shouldn't back up. MP3s in Set B will back up to the destination normally, but these files are deleted from the destination during archive maintenance even though you haven't specified this exclusion for Set B.

Frequency and version settings

You can only apply one set of version and deleted file retention settings to backup sets backing up to the same destination. When multiple backup sets back up to the same destination, the version and deleted file retention settings from the backup set with the highest priority are applied to all sets backing up to that destination.

For example, backup Set 1 and Set 2 are both backing up to the same destination, and Set 1 has a higher priority than Set 2. You configure Set 1 to back up new versions of files every hour and Set 2 to back them up every 15 minutes. Both sets will back up according to their new versions settings. However, during archive maintenance on the backup destination, Set 2's retained versions are reduced to every hour because Set 1's settings take priority.

Different Version And Retention Settings
If you would like different backup sets to have different version and deleted file retention settings, back up to multiple destinations.

Subscription status

(CrashPlan for Home only)

A number of features are exclusively available to subscribers, including creating and modifying backup sets. If your trial or subscription lapses, any previously created backup sets will continue to back up regularly, but you will be unable to create or modify any additional backup sets.

Do not set your backup schedules to overlap

If you schedule multiple backup sets to run between specified times, and the backup sets go to the same destination, ensure that these times do not overlap. This ensures good backup performance. You can set backup sets to run on a specific schedule by changing the Backup will run setting to Between specified times

Creating backup sets

Step 1: Enable backup sets

Enable the backup sets feature to start creating backup sets:

  1. Go to Settings > Backup > Backup sets and select Enable.

Enable Backup Sets

Step 2: Add backup set

Once backup sets are enabled, follow the steps below to complete setup of your backup set.

Backup Set Settings

  1. Choose Settings > Backup.
  2. Click Add.
  3. Enter the name for this backup set.
  4. (Optional) Change the priority for this backup set.
    New backup sets are assigned incrementally lower priority in the backup queue as you add them. You can adjust the priority for a selected backup set with the Priority control.
  5. From the Files section, click Change.
  6. In the File Selection window, change the file selection by selecting or de-selecting the files that you want to include with, or exclude from, this backup set.
Note: You can specify an attached external hard drive to include it in the file backup selection.
  1. Click Ok.
  2. In the Destinations section, choose Assign...


  1. Select the destinations for this backup set.
  2. Click Ok.
  3. (Optional) Change the backup settings for this backup set. Specify settings for:
  • Backup will run... to specify when you want CrashPlan to run.
  • Verify file selection... to specify when you want your file selection to be verified.
  • Frequency and Versions to change backup frequency and version retention settings.
  • Filename exclusions to specify the types of files to be excluded from this backup set.
  • Advanced Settings to specify bandwidth and throttling settings for this backup set.
  1. From Settings > Backup, click Save to save this backup set.

Moving files from one backup set to another

Since backup sets allow you to use different backup settings for different groups of files, you may decide that you want to move some files you have already backed up into a new backup set with different settings.

For example, the default backup set includes all of your files and backs up to the Code42 cloud every 15 minutes. If you wanted to change the backup settings for a folder of large video files so they only back up every hour, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure all of your existing backup sets are 100% backed up.
  2. Create a new backup set.
  3. Configure the new backup set to include the file selection, version and frequency settings, and any file exclusions.
  4. Allow all backup sets (both new and existing) to synchronize and reach 100% completion.
  5. Adjust the existing backup sets as needed by removing files from the selection or updating exclusions or version settings.
Keeping Your Files Safe When Creating New Backup Sets
Following the steps above ensures your files are completely backed up in both sets before you remove them from one set. In addition, if the backup sets use the same destination, you save time and bandwidth because CrashPlan uses data de-duplication to prevent the same file from being backed up twice.