PS4 to PS5 data transfer: how to transfer PS4 save data and profiles to your PS5

You've got your new PS5, and now you need to transfer your PS4 data – here's how

PS5 Sony PlayStation 5
(Image credit: Sony)

If you are one of the lucky ones who managed to grab a PlayStation 5 or are planning on doing so in the coming weeks then you are in for some incredible gaming action. But like with any new piece of tech getting it all set up and working can be quite the process, especially if you plan on playing some of the backwards compatible PS4 games that are on offer and need to transfer all your saved games across. 

Fortunately, unlike previous generational switches, Sony has thought about this and created some tools that make it incredibly easy to transfer all your data from your old PS4 to that brand new PS5. 

Transfer Data Directly From PS4 To PS5 

The easiest way of data transfer between consoles, especially if you are moving across multiple profiles to the new machine, is to do it wirelessly over your WiFi network. All you need to do is make sure that your PS4 console is connected to your network, and has the latest firmware update, and then start the PS5 setup, making sure to add the console to the same wireless network. 

If you want to increase transfer speeds you can connect the PS4 and PS5 consoles via a single ethernet cable, or you can connect both consoles to your network using ethernet cables. This will make the process faster, especially if you have a lot of data to move across. 

During the PS5 setup, you will be asked if you wish to transfer data from another console. Simply select yes and then follow the on-screen instructions, where you select exactly what data you want to transfer to your new PS5, and soon enough all your data will be on your new PS5, and crucially will not be lost from your PS4. 

If you have already set up your new PS5 but now want to move downloaded games or save files to the new machine you do still have some options. If both your PS4 and PS5 are connected to the same network then you can simply head to Settings > System > System Software > Data Transfer > Continue on your PS5 to start the process. 

You will need to press and hold the power button on your PS4 console for at least one second once the pairing process has begun, but other than that you can just leave your PS4 alone while the data moves across. When transferring data between consoles in this way your PS4 will transfer data in the background, so you do not need to keep an eye on it, but if you do wish to watch the progress you will either need a second screen to display it on or switch the HDMI input to your main screen from your PS5 back to your PS4. 

During the process your PS5 console will restart, which signals the point where you can start to use it.  

 These methods are really useful if you have a lot of large downloaded PS4 games that aren’t getting next-gen upgrades, and don’t fancy waiting for them to download again, but if you are just looking to make sure you don’t lose any progress then there is a simpler option. 

Transfer Data Using Cloud Saves 

PS+ subscribers have access to cloud saves, where your save games will be stored online and accessible from any console you log in to. All you need to do is make sure that your save games are saved to the cloud when on your PS4, then on your PS5 head to Settings > Saved Data and Game/App Settings and make sure that syncing between consoles is turned on. 

External Storage Transfers  

For anyone that is playing totally offline and with no network connection, there are even options for you. You can move, or even play, PS4 games directly from a USB storage device providing it fits the requirements. 

All you have to do is move the game files onto the external device on your PS4, and then plug it into the PS5 and you will be free to play the games as long as the device is plugged in. 

This is also a great way to free up hard drive space for PS5 games. Of course, you will need to make sure your device meets the requirements and is formatted correctly, but Sony has an easy to follow guide (opens in new tab) to help along the way.