Feature Article

What To Do Before Getting The PS5

If you're a PS4 owner, there are some steps you should take to ensure you're ready for PS5 launch day.

PlayStation 5 launched on November 12 in many markets around the world, which means it might be about time to retire your PS4. While you might be eager to clear the space out to make room for your shiny new PS5, there are several steps you should consider taking on your PS4 beforehand.

While you'll probably be fine even if you've mothballed your current-gen console already, you can help to speed up your setup process so that you waste no time in seeing what the PS5 has to offer. Read on to see what you should do to get yourself ready and kill some time before your new console arrives. Also, be sure to check out our PS5 review for all the details on what to expect, or head over to our PS5 game and hardware review roundup.

Move Your PS4 Games To External Storage

Backwards compatibility may not be quite as flashy on PS5 when compared to Xbox Series X/Series S, but it still works well, allowing you to play your PS4 games, potentially with various enhancements. Those can come in the form of higher resolutions and improved frame rates, along with faster load times--and that's before looking at games that are being specifically updated to take advantage of the PS5 hardware.

As such, you'll want to have your PS4 games downloaded and ready to play. Because PS5 games can only be run off the internal SSD, you'll ideally want to store PS4 games on an external hard drive. You don't have to save any room even for storing PS5 games, as they cannot be temporarily placed on an external drive, either. It can be exclusively for PS4 games and other media. You can also put PS4 games onto the internal PS5 SSD from the external drive once you've set up the system. This will give you quicker load times, but we'd recommend limiting this to smaller games. You will likely run out of storage space very quickly if you do this with your bigger titles.

You can start moving PS4 games off your internal hard drive to an external one now (along with downloading any others you might not already have installed). It's a time-consuming process, so be sure to give yourself some time to do it, as your PS4 won't be usable during the transfer process. Here's a quick rundown on how to transfer PS4 games to PS5.

How To Move PS4 Games To External Storage:

  1. Go to Settings -> Storage -> System Storage -> Applications
  2. Press Options and select "Move to Extended Storage"
  3. Check off the games you want to move and then press OK

If this is your first time using an external storage device on PS4, you'll need to format it first. You can do that by going to Settings -> Devices -> USB Storage Device and then select the drive and choose "Format as extended storage."

There are a select number of PS4 games that won't work on PS5 according to Sony, so you can save yourself the trouble of moving those.

Get Your Game Saves Ready

The easiest way of transferring your save files from PS4 to PS5 is through the cloud, but that will require you to have a PS Plus membership. If you do have a subscription, you should ensure your console is set as your primary PS4 so that your cloud saves upload automatically.

  1. Go to Settings -> Power Save Settings -> Set Features Available in Rest Mode
  2. Check off "Stay Connected to the Internet"
  3. Go to Settings -> Application Saved Data Management -> Auto-Upload
  4. Check off "Enable Automatic Uploads"

With this done, you can enable and disable cloud save uploads for individual games if there any you want to skip. Be aware that if you use more than one PS4, cloud saves aren't automatically uploaded from consoles that aren't set as your "Primary" PS4. In that case, you can manually upload saves or transfer them to a USB drive:

  1. Go to Settings -> Application Saved Data Management -> Saved Data in System Storage
  2. Select "Upload to Online Storage," pick the games/files you want to upload saves from, and select Upload
  3. OR, select "Copy to USB Storage Device" and follow the same process

When uploading to the cloud, you may need to overwrite saves files already located there, but you can verify which is the newest version by paying attention to the date displayed.

In some games' cases, you don't have to use Sony's own system. Watch Dogs: Legion lets you upload your save data to its own cloud servers from within the game itself. No only does this let you take your data from PS4 to PS5, but also from any other system to PS5.

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Sync Your Trophies

Trophies don't always upload to your profile on their own--you'll often see that process happen when you open the Trophies area on your PS4. Before unplugging your system, it's worth double-checking the menu once to make sure everything is correctly uploaded. You can also manually force this process by pressing the Options button and selecting "Sync with PlayStation Network" from the Trophies screen.

Manage Your Saved Screenshots And Videos

PS5 features some fun new features to commemorate your PS4 history, including displaying your playtime in games and creating a gallery of the media you've shared to Twitter or Facebook on PS4. But if you also have screenshots or videos you want to preserve, you can easily copy them off of the system using a USB drive. To do so, simply plug in a drive, open the Capture Gallery, check off individual items or everything, and then choose "Copy to USB Storage" to transfer it all.

Check Your Sign-In Credentials

You'll need to sign in to your PSN account once you have your PS5 plugged in, so you should make sure you actually know what your password is (and have your two-factor authentication straightened out if you use it). Otherwise, you could be left using Sony's "forgot my password" system on launch day, when its servers are potentially getting hammered--and you don't want to get locked out of your account when there are shiny new games to play.

Order A PSVR Adapter

While this likely won't come in time for PS5's launch, if you own PSVR and have any interest in using it on the new console, you'll need a special adapter to connect PSVR to PS5. Sony is offering these for free to PSVR owners, but you'll need to submit a request through its website to get one. Just make sure you have your serial number handy (found on the rear of the PSVR breakout box) to get the ball rolling.

Get Some Space Ready

PS5 is a big console, and there's a chance it may not fit into your entertainment console. As such, you may want to make plans to prepare some room for it, whether that's by looking for a new piece of furniture or dusting off an existing one. Here's how big PS5 is:

  • PS5 dimensions: 15.4 inches x 4.1 inches x 10.2 inches
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Chris Pereira

Chris Pereira is GameSpot's senior editor and global head of news. He likes Twin Peaks, The X-Files (before it was bad), and serial commas.

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GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

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JSprunk

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I remember when I used to waste my time trying to buy consoles on day 1. What a waste.

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Thanatos2k

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What to do before getting your PS5:

1. Wait, because first run consoles have higher defect rate and cost the most.

2. When enough of a library is built and price drops, buy.

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Barighm

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@Thanatos2k: Oddly, my launch consoles have always had a longer lifespan than my revised consoles. Except for my 360. What a POS that was.

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Atzenkiller

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Do so many people really have such slow internet that it makes sense for them to bother with backing up their games on a hard drive instead of just redownloading them? Or is it because of datacaps of only 1TB per month or so? Or is it purely an ADHD thing where some folks just can't wait an hour or so for a game to download? "I gotta play my old games now!!!!!"

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tomerkal91

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@Atzenkiller:I think it is more about being able to actually run your PS4 games directly from the harddrive on the PS5 and thus save the 600 and so GB available for pure PS5 games...

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blakepro_

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I have a 2Tb internal HDD in my PS4 and I want to COPY (not move) those games to an external drive for use with my PS5. (so I can still play the games on both systems without swapping the HDD back and forth)

What is the best way to do that?

If I connect a 2Tb external drive to my PS5 and then do the ethernet transfer thing from my PS4 to my PS5, will it COPY the games from the PS4 to the external drive on the PS5?

I really don't want to MOVE them and then have to re-download all of them.

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Atzenkiller

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@blakepro_: So you want to go back and forth between playing those games on a PS4 and a PS5? Why? To compare the graphics?

I don't see why you'd have to move anything for that though. Just install any games you wanna play on both consoles and you're done. Unless you need to have your whole game collection available at all times of course. Then you'll probably need lots of SSDs with backed up games on them.

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blakepro_

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@Atzenkiller:

I'm keeping my old PS4 and I have other rooms with TVs in them so I want the PS4 with it's whole library in one room and the PS5 with all those games and more in a different room. I can be playing the PS5 while my kids play the PS4 or whatever.

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Atzenkiller

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@blakepro_: So if you've got multiple consoles, including one or more for your kids, then why would you choose to play on their PS4 in their room instead of using your PS5 that you bought mainly for yourself? Or is this purely a clutter issue that collectors have who fill whole rooms with games they mostly never even play? It wouldn't matter where you play your games if you bought all your games digitally. Or weren't too lazy to walk to the next room to get some game you wanna play.

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Barighm

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Retire my PS4? Are you mad? I've still got like 40 games on my shelf that I haven't played yet. And that's to say nothing of my digital collection...

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Atzenkiller

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@Barighm: And I bet you'll go on and buy a bunch of new PS5 games anyway to keep adding them to that stack. Companies love guys like that.

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Barighm

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Edited By Barighm

@Atzenkiller: Um...is this supposed to sound clever or something? Because, uh, yeah, I'll eventually be buying new PS5 games. And companies do like people who buy stuff. And the sky is blue and water is wet.

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Cryptics

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@Barighm: Whats stopping you from playing them on PS5?

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Barighm

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@Cryptics: I don't have one?

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