How to Export & Import Printer (Machine) Settings & Profiles in Cura?

While exporting and importing Cura data is something that can become necessary in many cases, whether it’s for switching between computers frequently, buying a new computer, or letting another family member use your 3D printer with their own computer, finding out how to perform this task, especially when it comes to transferring the machine settings, can prove to be challenging.

In this guide, we will explain how you can export both machine (printer) settings and print profiles separately, along with how you can take a complete backup of your Cura data, which is practically a bundle of both all of your print profiles and machine settings that you can restore from whenever necessary.

How to Export & Import Printer / Machine Settings in Cura?

While exporting and importing machine settings in Cura is a pretty straightforward process that won’t take more than a minute of your time, the tricky part is finding out how to perform these tasks.

To export machine settings in Cura, the first step you will need to take is to switch to the printer you would like to export the data from by choosing it from the printer menu on the top-left corner of the Cura window that becomes visible when you’re in the Prepare tab.

cura choosing active printer


Once you have the correct printer selected, click the File option on the menu bar, and choose the Save Project option from the dropdown menu that appears.

cura save project


Finally, save the project file (which contains the models you have imported, the current print settings, and the active machine settings) to an appropriate location, whether your computer disk or an external drive and conclude the exporting process.

cura save project to disk


On the other hand, to import the machine settings you have just exported, start by clicking the File option on the menu bar yet again, but this time, choose the Open File(s) option.

cura open files


Next, choose the project file you have exported from the File Explorer window, and click the Open button.

cura opening project file


When Cura asks you whether you would like to open the file you selected as a project file or only import models from it, click the Open as Project button.

cura open as project


Finally, choose the Create New option from the dropdown menus for both the Printer Settings and the Profile Settings sections, which will import the machine settings and the print settings within the project file as separate entries, and click the Open button.

cura import settings from projects


Once Cura finishes importing the file, you will see a new machine profile after clicking the printer menu in the top-left corner again, which will have the settings you have exported into the project file at the beginning.

cura imported printer profile in menu


Finally, you can feel free to change the name of the profile you’ve imported or adjust it to suit your needs if necessary, as the imported machine profile will behave no differently than the machine profiles you have created yourself.

How to Export & Import Profiles (Print Settings) in Cura?

Exporting and importing Cura print settings is less tricky than doing the same for machine settings, as the necessary button is located conveniently in the Print Settings section and not hidden behind another feature.

To export a profile that contains print settings in Cura, start by clicking the Print Settings tab (the one with the profile name, infill percentage, etc., written on it) in the top-right corner, which will be visible for both the Prepare and the Preview tabs.

cura print settings tab


Next, click the Profile dropdown menu on the Print Settings window, and choose the Manage Profiles option.

If the dropdown menu isn’t visible, click the Custom button at the bottom.

cura profile dropdown


Finally, choose the profile you would like to export from the pane on the left, click the button below the Import button (the one with three horizontal lines stacked on top of each other), click the Export option from the drpodown menu, and save the file to an appropriate location on your computer.

cura export print settings


On the other hand, when you would like to import the profile you have exported, you will need to click the Import button on the top-right corner of the same window instead, and choose the profile file from the File Explorer.

cura import print settings


How to Export & Import a Full Backup (Profiles & Machine Settings) in Cura?

Last but not least, let’s talk about exporting and importing a full backup that practically contains all of your Cura data, including both all of your profiles and all of your machine settings, which is a process that will come in pretty handy in cases where you would like to install Cura on a new computer.

Cura Backups

The most convenient way to export a full backup is to use the Cura Backups feature, which you can access by clicking the Extensions option on the menu bar, hovering over the Cura Backups option, and clicking the Manage Backups button.

cura manage backups


Provided that you’re already signed in with an Ultimaker account (else you will need to sign in first), you will see a window similar to the image below, where you can click the Backup Now button to prompt Cura to automatically back all your settings up, and upload them to the cloud.

Additionally, if you would like Cura to automatically create a backup every day (provided that you have started Cura on the day), you can check the Auto Backup option.

cura backups


On the other hand, to import your backups, you can click the Restore button next to the backup entry you would like to import and restart Cura, which will prompt Cura to handle the restoration process automatically.

Finally, as the backups you take through this feature will be saved to your Ultimaker account, you can import them from any computer without having to transfer the data manually, which is quite a convenience if you switch between computers regularly.

Manual Backup

While the Cura Backups feature is, without a doubt, the more convenient option, there can be scenarios where you need to make a local backup that you can take with you, such as when the computer you need to import the data to has no Internet connection.

To create a manual backup of your Cura settings, start by clicking the Help option on the menu bar, and choose the Show Configuration Folder option from the dropdown menu.

cura show configuration folder


Next, note the folder path you’re in, which should be something like C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\cura\5.2 on Windows for version 5.2 of Cura.

cura appdata path in windows


Finally, select all the files and folders in the directory, and copy them to an appropriate folder on your computer, whether on the local disk or on an external disk, such as a USB flash drive, which will be your backup folder.

cura local backup


On the other hand, when you need to import the backup, all you will need to do is to navigate to the folder path you noted earlier and copy the files you have stored into this folder (while Cura isn’t open), which will replace the Cura configuration on the computer with your backup.

Conclusion

While the method for exporting and importing machine settings is definitely not easy to find at first, it’s a pretty quick & easy process once you do it for the first time and learn which buttons you will need to click from then on.

On the other hand, when it comes to exporting and importing print settings or making a full backup, Cura makes things extremely simple, both in terms of finding where the features are and in terms of going through the processes.