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How to back up your Steam Deck data

Looking to create a backup of your Steam Deck data but are unfamiliar with Steam OS or Linux? No worries! We’re here to guide you through the process of backing up your Steam Deck data, step by step.

Deja Dup is backing up Steam Deck data.

How to back up your Steam deck data with Deja Dup

To create a backup of your Steam Deck data using Deja Dup, start by switching to Desktop mode. This can be done by selecting the “Power” button in the Steam Game Mode UI, followed by “Switch to Desktop.”

Once in SteamOS Desktop mode, you’ll see the KDE Plasma desktop. Open the “Konsole” tool, KDE Plasma’s terminal program, necessary for installing Deja Dup on your Steam Deck.

Deja Dup installation on Steam Deck requires the Flatpak packaging tool, as updates to SteamOS remove anything installed using the system’s package manager (Pacman).

Install Deja Dup via Konsole using the following command:

flatpak install flathub org.gnome.DejaDup

After installing Deja Dup, launch it to back up your Steam Deck data. Follow these steps:

  1. Find and launch the “Deja Dup” app (also known as “Backups”) from the KDE Plasma app menu. Click on “Create Your First Backup” to start.
  2. In the “Folders to Back Up” and “Folders to Ignore” sections, Deja Dup defaults to backing up everything in the “home” directory while ignoring “Trash” and “Downloads.” Unless you’re an expert, keep these defaults and click “Forward.” Deja Dup folder locations.
  3. Next, choose your backup location. By default, Deja Dup selects “Google Drive.” Connect to Google Drive if you have space, or choose another location from the drop-down menu. Deja Dup remote location is being configured.
  4. Configure your backup location, name your folder, and click “Forward” to proceed.
  5. On the following page, opt to encrypt your backup files by entering a password. If you prefer no encryption, uncheck “Password-protect your backup.” Click “Forward” to continue. Deja Dup's backup is being encrypted.
  6. After setting your encryption passphrase, Deja Dup begins the backup process. The duration depends on the size of your Deck’s main drive content. Deja Dup is backing up data on the Steam Deck.

Deja Dup will notify you upon successful backup completion. Remember to perform backups periodically to maintain your Steam Deck’s data security.

How to restore your Steam deck data with Deja Dup

To restore your Steam Deck data with Deja Dup, follow these steps. First, launch the Deja Dup (Backups) tool on your Steam Deck in Desktop mode. Once opened, locate and select the “Restore” option in the app window using the mouse.

After selecting “Restore,” the app will scan your configured backup location and load the latest backup. Next, click on the menu button adjacent to the “find” button and select “Select All.”

By choosing “Select All,” you will select all files and folders in your backup. After everything is selected, click the “Restore” button to initiate the restoration of your data from the backups to your Steam Deck.

How to back up your Steam deck data with Fwbackups

If Deja Dup isn’t suitable for your needs, you can use the Fwbackups app to back up your Steam Deck data. Start by switching to Desktop mode on your Steam Deck. Once there, launch the “Konsole” terminal app.

With “Konsole” open, use the following command to install the latest version of Fwbackups:

flatpak install flathub com.diffingo.fwbackups

After installing the Fwbackups app, launch it on your Steam Deck. Then, follow these step-by-step instructions to back up your data:

  1. In Fwbackups, locate and select “One-Time Backup” using the mouse. Next, click the “Add folder” button.
  2. When you click “Add folder,” a pop-up window will appear. Use the chooser to select your Steam Deck’s home directory by selecting “Home” on the left-hand sidebar.
  3. In the pop-up window, click the “Open” button. This will add /home/deck as the backup path in Fwbackups.
  4. Click “Next” to proceed. You’ll need to choose a destination for your backup. Since Fwbackups does not support cloud services like Google Drive, connect a backup SD card or USB disk to your Steam Deck and click “Browse.”
  5. After clicking “Browse,” navigate to the folder where Steam OS has mounted your SD card or USB disk. Then, click “Next” to proceed. Fwbackup is starting a backup.
  6. The default settings in Fwbackups should suffice for backing up Steam Deck data. Keep these settings unchanged and click “Start backup” to begin creating a new backup.  Fwbackup has finished backing up.

When Fwbackups completes the backup process, click the “Finish” button to conclude.

How to restore your Steam deck data with Fwbackups

To restore a backup of your Steam Deck data with Fwbackups, follow these steps. First, launch the Fwbackups app. Once open, navigate to the “Restore” section and click on it.

Before proceeding, ensure your external backup medium (SD card or USB backup drive) is connected to your Steam Deck and properly mounted.

In the “Restore” section, select “source type” and choose “Local archive.” Then, browse for the Tar file created by Fwbackups during the backup process. After selecting the backup file, click the “Start Restore” button to begin restoring your Steam Deck data.

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