How To Set Up CrashPlan On Your Mac

CrashPlan is a backup application, made by Code42. I use it and recommend it to create off-site, cloud-based, backups. To backup to Code42’s servers, one needs a subsciption. Code42 used to offer both home and business plans, but they stopped selling home plans in August 2017.

A Business subscription costs $10 per computer per month and provides unlimited storage.

With a paid subscription to CrashPlan, CrashPlan runs every 15 minutes and creates multiple backup copies of your files. Every time you edit a file a new backup copy is made.

Setup Instructions

Here are some brief instructions that’ll hopeful get your started, however, you might find CrashPlan’s detailed and illustrated installation and setup instructions helpful.

  1. Start by going to CrashPlan’s web store and purchase a business subscription. (CrashPlan’s current Mac system requirements)
  2. Login to your Business account to download the CrashPlan application.
  3. Once the CrashPlan installer finishes downloading to your Mac please double click the installer to start the installation process.
  4. Follow the on-screen prompts to install CrashPlan on your Mac.
  5. After the installer finishes, the CrashPlan application will automatically open.
  6. Log in to your account.
  7. Once you’ve logged, locate “CrashPlan Pro” under “Destinations” and then click the Start Backup button corresponding to CrashPlan Pro.
  8. Wait 5-10 seconds. CrashPlan will start a backup and it’ll even display a message telling you that backups have started.
  9. Click on the “Backup” tab in the column at the left and look at the section labeled “Files”. By default it’s set to backup your Home folder. This folder is the default location for all of your music, pictures, documents, local email messages and files on your Desktop. This is typically what I recommend you back up. However, if you want to make changes to add or remove folders, click the Change button and select additional files, folders or hard drives.
Important Notes:
  • You can quit the CrashPlan application. CrashPlan will continue to perform a backup of your Mac as long as the laptop is on, awake and connected to the Internet.
  • If you’re using macOS Catalina then you need to make sure you grant Full Disk Access to CrashPlan. When you initially open CrashPlan Business you’ll be notified that you need to grant these permissions. Follow the instructions listed or refer to my article about how to grant Full Disk Access to CrashPlan.
  • The initial back up could take days or weeks to complete depending upon how much data you’ve selected and the speed of your Internet connection. Until this initial backup is complete you don’t have much protection, so I think CrashPlan is a nice supplemental backup to local backups performed by Time Machine.
  • By default, CrashPlan will send you email notices when it hasn’t been able to backup your Mac in 3 days and it’ll also send you a weekly summary of when the last backup occurred. You can change these email notification schedules in the Settings section.
  • As with any backup application, I recommend that you perform test file restorations regularly.  This will ensure that the backup system is working properly and that you are comfortable performing restorations so you can do it with confidence when disaster strikes. CrashPlan offers their own instructions for restoring files and I provide instructions in a previous Tech Tip.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.