Get your Dropbox files on a new laptop

How do you get files from an old computer to a new one? Dropbox Backup makes it super easy. 

Two people sit at a table and look at a laptop

It's that time of year again: the beginning of school. Yah! With it comes new books, new teachers, and new opportunities. And, perhaps, a new laptop. 

But how can you get files from your old computer to your new one quickly and easily? And how can you ensure that the files on your new computer are safe and secure across devices going forward?

The solution is simple. Dropbox Backup makes it easy to back up your files to the cloud automatically, so you can quickly and smoothly restore your stuff when setting up a new device. Grab your old computer and your new computer, and follow the steps below to get rolling with Backup.

New laptop? It only takes a few clicks to sync your Dropbox files to a new device.

Before you buy

First things first: Before you can move files onto your new computer, be sure your old computer is already backed up to the cloud with Dropbox Backup. And if you haven’t already done it, just follow these simple steps:

Step 1: Open the Dropbox desktop app (or install it if you haven’t already), and make sure you're connected to the internet. 

Step 2: In your menu bar, click the Dropbox icon, and then click on your avatar. Open Preferences, click on the Backups tab, and click Set up.

Step 3: Under Add a backup, select the computer you’d like to back up, and follow the prompts.  

Step 4: Take a break. Hang out. Grab a coffee. Let Dropbox back up your device, and continue doing so automatically going forward, while you go about your life.

After your new computer arrives

Okay, so you're backed up to the cloud. How do you get your files back into your new computer? That's simple and fast, too. Install the Dropbox desktop app on your new computer, log in, confirm you want to put your backup files on the computer, then choose the files to back up. (Again, on a new computer, this will likely be everything in your backup.) Voila, new computer, same folders and files in the same place. 

And Backup acts as an automated safety net going forward, too. It will continue to back up new or changed files and folders, keeping the most up-to-date version of your computer in the cloud. Should something happen—you spill coffee, you drop your computer, you lose it—file recovery is a cinch. (We hope you don't need a new new computer, but life comes at you fast sometimes.) Rather than worrying about losing photos, videos, and important files, you can focus on what matters: acing that test, nailing that presentation, and keeping your digital life safe.