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I'd like to install a new hard drive into my Playstation 3. For that purpose, I want to back up as much as I can to get it onto the new hard drive again. While I've already copied all my saves, I'd like to know if I can also save the content of my message box (recieved and sent messages). I plan on using the backup utility to copy a backup onto the new hard drive, but I'm also saving some stuff manually.

I know there is a question here called What data does the PS3's backup utility preserve?, but unfortunately that question focuses on game saves with no mention of messages, and the accepted answer that says "everything gets saved" appears to be inaccurate.

I'd like to know whether the PS3's backup utility saves my received and sent messages, or if there is another way to save them to an external device to restore them on the new hard drive.

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The backup utility restores everything from the old hard drive, as long as it is copied again onto the same PS3. This includes received and sent PSN messages. These messages are saved locally, so they won't be downloaded by signing into the PSN account. There is no other way to save the messages manually.

I've just used the backup utility to copy the content of my old hard drive onto a newly installed one and all messages were restored. However, it could be possible that they will not be restored if the backup is performed on a different PS3, same as copy protected saves, but this is just a guess.

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