How to Backup PlayStation 3

12 December 2010 By Shashank

Sony PlayStation 3 is at the center of most home entertainment system these days, apart from high-def gaming, it is also capable of playing Blu-Ray movies for the pure audio and video bliss unlike any other gaming console. Today we will be discussing one of the important aspect of a PlayStation 3 System, which is backup. By the way what is the last time you backed up your PS3?

It is very important that you perform a full PS3 system backup monthly or along with new firmware update and regular game save backups at intervals depending on how much you play on it. Imagine a scenario in which your PS3 HDD goes kaput for reasons alien to you or your PS3 firmware gets corrupt while upgrading firmware, so it is always advised to be on the safer side by saving full PS3 System backup at a separate place for emergency situations.

How to Backup PS3

backing up PS3

Full Backup of PS3 System on an external storage media


FAT32 formatted hard drive – I used this HP formatting utility to format a 232GB HDD. For my 120GB PS3 Slim it required 77GB free space.

Steps to Backup PS3

To create a full PS3 system backup including games saves and system settings, follow the steps given below

  • Connect the FAT32 formatted hard drive.
  • Go to XMB Menu –> Settings –> System Settings –> Backup Utility –> Backup –> Yes –> Yes.
  • Select external hard drive and wait for preparation and then the backup will start automatically.
  • In my case it took 1 hour 21 minutes for backup to complete, the time will vary depending upon your used up space, as it will also backup PSN games, video files, music files, pics stored on your PS3 system.

Backing up Selective Game Saves on PS3 (Manual Backup)

You can save game files of the games that you are currently playing on a external USB HDD or Pendrive one by one. Follow these steps :

  • XMB Menu –> Game –> Saved Data Utility –> Press Triangle on your controller –> Select Copy –> Select Storage media.
  • Wait for the copy process, that’s it.

Restoration of Backups (Full System Restore and Game Save Restore)

For full system backup restore go to XMB Menu –> Settings –> System Settings –> Restore PS3 System –> Select backup from HDD –> Restore

For game save restore go to XMB Menu –> Game –> Saved Data Utility –> Select Game save from HDD –> Copy –> Press Triangle –> Copy on PS3

How to Backup PS3 Trophies

For many gamers PlayStation trophies are real precious, however Sony does not allow local backup of trophies instead they encourage gamers to Sync Trophies with their servers which infact is a better way of backing up trophies but when changing systems or changing hard drives you should keep in mind the following before proceeding as a wrong Sync could easily result in missing trophies.

Before changing hard drive, Sync your trophies with the server, when on new hard drive restore the full backup and then the first thing you should do is to Sync back trophies from online server to your PS3 after signing in to your PSN account. This Sync should be done before playing any games as the new trophies will create new sync information which could mess up with older information previously saved online.

So how often do you backup your PS3?

If you have any questions, let me know in comments.

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Gaming 7 comments


Jeff says:

I’ve never backed up my PS3 :(, but as my PS3 is getting old i should better start doing regular backups. thanks for the post.

Kevin says:

I just formatted a brand new 500GB usb hard drive to Fat32 and ended up with 129GB of free space. Is there anything that can be done about this? It seems like a real waste of space and money. I have a 1st gen 80GB PS3 and have never backed up. Needless to say my HDD is full. Backing up sounds like a really good idea but once I pass 129GB, I’d have to go as high as 2TB to be able to cover a potential 500GB HDD. Oh and thank you very much for the link to the HP format utility.

Shashank says:

If your external hard drive is not showing actual space in FAT32, try this little software utility “Fat32Formatter version 1.0”

After installation, select your External HDD, click on Initialize Drive, click on “Not allocated” box and select quick format.

hopefully your full 500GB will now be visible.

Kevin says:

Worked like a charm! Now showing 465GB free space. Now let’s just hope my PS3 will recognize it now that it is in Fat32, I’ll find out this evening. Thank you very much for the help and the links.

PS3 backup says:

i’ve just backed up my playstation 3.. took around 45 minutes


how to backup ps3 games? says:

anybody know how to backup games on ps3, i am on firmware version 3.55?? is it hackable?


  1. Steps to Backup Playstation 3 - Tech Salsa
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