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CrashPlan Support

Restoring From An External Drive To A New Computer Or Drive

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.


This article provides a step-by-step guide for restoring your files from an external drive to a replacement computer or main hard drive.

Alternatively, if you are not replacing a computer or main hard drive, but you would like to restore files from a backup archive on an external drive to a different computer, see our tutorial on Attaching An Archive instead.

Restoring from an external drive to a new computer or drive

Step 1: Install CrashPlan

  1. Download and install the CrashPlan app on your computer.
  2. Open the CrashPlan app and select Existing Account.
  3. Sign in with the email address and password associated with your account.
Don't Adopt Your Previous Computer
When you sign in, a message prompts you to adopt your previous computer. Don't adopt yet—you should adopt after restoring your files.

Step 2: Attach your backup archive

  1. Connect the drive containing the backup archive to your computer.
  1. Open the CrashPlan app and go to Destinations > Folders.
  2. Choose Select.
    Select Archive Location
  3. Navigate to the archive you'd like to attach.
    Look for the folder that matches the source computer's ID: for example, 948212309528060501
  4. Click Ok.
Locating The Source Computer's ID
Your backup archive is stored in a folder labeled with an 18-digit number. This number corresponds to the computer ID CrashPlan assigned to the computer you backed up. If you have multiple backup archives stored on your external drive, and you are unsure which one corresponds to the backup you want to attach, see locating your computer ID below.

Step 3: Restore your files

Once your backup archive is attached, you can restore your files. We recommend reviewing our tutorial on restoring all your files to a new computer or drive for best practices, tips, and warnings.

Step 4: Assign a new computer ID

Now, prepare your new computer to adopt your original computer. Adoption is the process by which you connect your existing backup archives and settings to your new computer. The steps below describe how to prompt the Adopt option.

  1. Open the CrashPlan app.
  2. Double-click the CrashPlan logo in the upper-right corner.
    The CrashPlan command-line area opens.
  3. Enter: guid new
  4. Press Enter and close the window.

Step 5: Adopt previous computer

When you sign back in to the CrashPlan app, you will see the option to Adopt. Follow our instructions for adopting your previous computer and updating your file selection to resume backing up.

Locating your computer ID

Each inbound backup archive is stored in a folder labeled with an 18-digit computer ID. If you aren't certain which 18-digit folder corresponds to your computer, you can find your computer ID from the CrashPlan web app using the steps below.

  1. Sign in to the CrashPlan web app.
  2. Select the name of your computer from the list of computers.
  3. From COMPUTER GUID, note your computer ID.