Skip to main content
CrashPlan Support

What Is Not Backing Up

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.


The CrashPlan app is intended to back up your user files (pictures, music, documents, etc.), not your operating system or applications. For this reason, CrashPlan excludes certain temporary files and system files. Additionally, some metadata is unsupported. This article describes the files and metadata that are not supported by CrashPlan.

What am I not allowed to back up?

Since CrashPlan is not intended to back up your operating system, the CrashPlan app excludes some files, which we call admin excludes. The files types and folders that are excluded on all platforms contain:

  • System files
  • Application data
  • Caches
  • Cookies
  • Temporary files
  • Trash/Recycle bin
  • System images

In addition to these built-in exclusions, CrashPlan also respects the OS X com_apple_backup _excludeItem metadata, which is commonly used to flag things like iTunes movie rentals.

These files cannot be selected for backup and the excludes cannot be removed. You can add your own exclusions if you want to exclude a particular type of file.

Is my metadata backed up?

Metadata is data about data. A good example of metadata is the file creation date. When saving a file on your hard drive, your computer automatically records information about when the file was created. You don't manually say, “I created this on 3/19/99 at 12:00pm.” Your computer does it for you.

CrashPlan supports backing up metadata on all platforms; however, some metadata is unsupported.

Restoring Metadata
Metadata cannot be restored via the web restore. To preserve metadata, restore from the CrashPlan app.

Unsupported metadata

Windows OS X
  • Compression attribute
  • Created date
  • Encrypted
  • Hidden
  • Not_Content_Indexed
  • Offline
  • Reparse_Point
  • Sparse_File
  • Other named forks
  • BSD Flags, which can be set via chflags
  • HFS+ extended attributes (i.e. xattr)
  • Aliases

Admin excludes

All patterns are in Java Regular Expression format.

Universal patterns

.*/iPhoto Library/iPod Photo Cache/.*
.*/Google/Chrome/Safe Browsing.* 


.*/System Volume Information/.*
.*/Temporary Internet Files/.*
.*/Local Settings/Temp.*
.*/Application Data/Application Data.*
(?i).*/Google/Chrome/User Data/Default/Cookies(-journal)?", "(?i).*/Safari/Library/Caches/.*


.*/Network Trash Folder/.*
.*/VM Storage
/Previous Systems.*
.*/Microsoft User Data/Entourage Temp/.*
.*/iP.* Software Updates/.*
.*/Library/Application Support/SyncServices/.*
.*/Library/Mail/Envelope Index
.*/Library/Calendars/Calendar Cache
.*/iTunes/Album Artwork/Cache/.*
.*/iPhoto Library/iPod Photo Cache.*
/Desktop DB
/Desktop DF
/Users/Shared/SC Info.*
.*/Library/Saved Application State/.*
.*/Application Support/Google/Chrome/Default/Cookies(-journal)?





Hidden files

Some temporary and system files are hidden in the restore view because you do not typically need to interact with these files. Hidden files and locations do not appear in the file selection list by default. Select Show hidden files to view hidden files.

All patterns are in Java Regular Expression format.

All platforms



.*/Local Settings/History/
.*/Start Menu/


/Desktop DB
/Desktop DF