How to Install CrashPlan on Ubuntu

CrashPlan is one of the few online backup services that supports Linux.  In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to install it on one of the most popular Linux distros: Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat).

It’s pretty easy.  You don’t need to be an expert, but you do need to be comfortable with the command line.  This should work for other flavors of Linux, as well.

CrashPlan running on Ubuntu

Steps to Install CrashPlan on Ubuntu 10.10

  1. Download CrashPlan.  Your operating system should be detected automatically, but if not, make sure you’re getting the .tgz (Linux) and not the .exe (Windows).
    Downloading CrashPlan tgz file
  2. Launch Terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T).
  3. Navigate to the folder you downloaded the .tgz file to.  In my case, it was ~/Downloads.
    cd Downloads/
  4. Lets extract the gzipped tarball.
    tar zxvf CrashPlan_3.6.4_Linux.tgz
  5. Change to the newly created directory.
    cd CrashPlan-install/
  6. Run the CrashPlan install script.  Note: it is recommended to run the install as root.  If you don’t, CrashPlan can only backup files readable by your account (and will inform you as such).
    sudo ./
  7. Follow the on-screen prompts and accept the license agreement.  You can hit Enter to accept the default values.

CrashPlan is now installed!

Fix the Startup Bug in Ubuntu

Unfortunately, CrashPlan doesn’t start on boot in Ubuntu 10.10.  Possible solutions are detailed on Code42’s support site.  Here’s the fix that worked for me:

  1. Edit CrashPlan’s run.conf with your favorite text editor, such as vi or nano.  I will use nano.
    sudo nano /usr/local/crashplan/bin/run.conf
  2. Navigate to the end of the GUI_JAVA_OPTS line.
  3. Add this, before the ending quotation mark:
  4. Save the file (Ctrl+O) and quit nano (Ctrl+X).

CrashPlan will now start on boot correctly!

P.S. If you’re going to buy CrashPlan, could you do me a favor and purchase it through my affiliate link?  I receive a small commission (don’t worry, it doesn’t add to your price) which helps support this site.

Geoff Akerlund

Geoff Akerlund

Geoff Akerlund is the founder and editor-in-chief of He is a cloud fanatic and regularly reviews online backup services. He believes backups should be easy, affordable, and automatic.

Geoff Akerlund


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  • Numpty

    Could you tell us what -Dorg.eclipse.swt.browser.DefaultType=mozilla does please? Does it matter if we don’t have Firefox installed?

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    • Hi Numpty. I’m not up to date on my Linux knowledge, so I don’t know exactly what it does. It looks like it might be to prevent Eclipse from crashing under certain conditions. It does not matter if you have Firefox installed, because it’s only to get CrashPlan running at startup.

      Also, I only had to do this with Ubuntu 10.10, so it’s possible newer versions don’t need the line added.

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