How to Install Games to External Hard Drive on PlayStation 5

PlayStation 5 comes with many exciting features, including 120Hz gaming support, as well as the new DualSense controller with adaptive triggers. However, the console only ships with a relatively small 825GB SSD. This means that you will be forced to install many games on your console. Fortunately, you can at least install your PS4 games on an external hard drive and play them on your PS5. So, here is how to install games to external hard drive on PlayStation 5.

Use External Hard Drive to Play PS4 Games on PS5

Since all next-gen games use the PlayStation 5’s high-speed SSD, you cannot transfer them to external storage. However, there are many PS4 games you can play on your new console. You can easily install these games on external hard drives or external SSDs on PlayStation 5 to save space on your console’s extremely limited SSD.

In this article, we will discuss how you can use an external hard drive to store your PS4 games and play on PS5. We will also discuss how you can automatically install PS4 games on your hard drive and everything else you need to know about using removable storage for PS4 games.

As always, you can use the table of contents below to jump to any section in this article.

Format External Hard Drive to Store PS4 Games

If you are connecting a new hard drive to store PS4 games, you must format it with your console first. Here’s how you can do it.

  • Connect your external hard drive or SSD to the PS5 console.
  • Go to Settings -> Storage.

  • Select ‘Expanded Storage’ and then go to ‘Format as Extended Storage’.

format as extended storage

  • Click ‘Yes’ on the warning screen that opens.

use external storage ps5

Your external hard drive will be formatted as extended storage for your console and you will be able to store PS4 games on your hard drive.

Enable/Disable Game Installation on Expanded Storage

When you set up an expanded storage device for your PlayStation, it will install new PS4 games on the expanded storage by default. That way you don’t have to worry about the latest generation games taking up valuable space on your SSD. However, if you don’t want this feature, you can easily disable it.

  • Go to Settings -> Storage.
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ps5 settings storage

  • Select ‘Expanded Storage’ and turn off the switch next to ‘Always Install PS4 Games on Expanded Storage’.

install games external hard drive playstation 5

Now new PS4 games that you have installed on your PS5 will not be automatically saved to your external hard drive. Instead, they will be installed on your PS5’s internal SSD.

Eject or Remove External Hard Drive from PS5

Now, I think most of the time, you disconnect your external hard drives from your PS5 by pulling the cable from the port. This is not recommended and may result in data loss or even corrupt your hard disk. If so, here is how you can disconnect and remove an external hard drive from your PS5 to remove it from your console.

  • Go to Settings -> Storage.

ps5 settings storage

  • Select ‘Extended Storage’ and click ‘Safely Remove from PS5’

install games external hard drive playstation 5

You can then remove your external hard drive from your PlayStation 5 without worrying about data loss or corruption.

Save Storage Space by Moving PS4 Games to External Storage

Space on the PlayStation 5’s SSD is invaluable. Moreover, until Sony publishes the list of SSDs that can be used to increase the storage on the console, there is no way to get more storage on your console. So it’s pretty nifty to at least store your PS4 games on an external hard drive or SSD to save space on your PS5’s SSD. So, are you going to start installing PS4 games on an external hard drive? Let us know in the comments.

Moyens Staff
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