Moving Projects from Basecamp 2 to Basecamp 4

Basecamp 2 and 4 have a lot of things in common, but they're pretty different too! Before you start moving your Basecamp 2 projects over, you should know what will and what won't be moved over.

New accounts created after September 16, 2022 are on Basecamp 4. Any existing Basecamp 3 accounts are automatically on Basecamp 4 and have all the new features. These instructions will help you transition from Basecamp 2 to Basecamp 4.

This page covers:

These items easily transfer when you move a project over:

  • All users on a project, including the company/organization they belong to
  • Messages
  • To-dos
  • Files
  • Documents
  • Forwarded emails
  • Non-recurring events
  • And any comments posted to the above

But these items don't move over:

  • People’s superpowers (Admin, Billing liaison, etc.) won’t be moved over
  • Groups/departments for people won’t be moved over
  • If a document has revisions, the old versions won’t be moved over
  • Recurring events won’t be moved over
  • Tags for files won’t be moved over
  • Standalone calendars won't be moved over
  • Templates won't be moved over
  • Client projects do not move over but we have a workaround for you

You also won't be able to loop in non-Basecamp users or add items to a project via email like you can in Basecamp 2. But Basecamp 4 has a lot else going for it. Check out the latest here!

To help make this transition easier, we've also created a special plan that'll let you keep running your existing Basecamp 2 projects (including client ones) running for free! More on that 🆓 plan here.

To move or not to move

Many companies (like ours) have switched from Basecamp 2 to 4 by simply leaving all our projects in Basecamp 2, and treating it as a long-term archive with all of the history. Because Basecamp 2 will continue to run till the end of the internet, and because we'll let you keep your Basecamp 2 account for free, you could follow this approach too. Just treat Basecamp 4 as a fresh start, and begin everything new over there. 🌟

Others want to take the opposite approach, and bring their entire history over to Basecamp 4. That way it'll all be in one place.

You might find it helpful to do a bit of both! Pick up the things you're currently working on and bring them over to Basecamp 4 — everything else can stay in Basecamp 2. If you keep some projects in both places, be aware that all of your Basecamp 2 users and clients will also be added to your Basecamp 4 account when you migrate a project over. 

This is a great page for folks on any account to bookmark: This will give someone the option to click into Basecamp 2 or 4, right off the bat.

Whatever approach you decide to take, keep in mind that nothing will be deleted or removed from either Basecamp 2 or Basecamp 4 without you explicitly doing so. That means changing your mind is okay! So give it a shot, see what sticks, and change what doesn't.

Here's how to move a project over:

To move a project from Basecamp 2 to 4, you'll need to be the owner of the Basecamp 2 account, and either an admin or owner in Basecamp 4. Get started by heading to Adminland:

Screenshot of the Home screen with an arrow pointing at the Adminland button in the upper right corner

Then click the option in blue to  Move projects from Basecamp 2 to Basecamp 4 :

Screenshot of the Adminland page with the "Move projects from Basecamp 2 to Basecamp 4" option highlighted

On the next page, read through the explanatory text until you see the OK, I've got all that button. Click that button!

Screenshot of the "Move projects from Basecamp 2" page with an arrow pointing at the "OK, I've got all that" button at the bottom

On the next page, you'll see text explaining what moves over. Look for the green button at the bottom of that page that says  Got it, I'm ready to get started  button:

Another screenshot of the "Move projects from Basecamp 2" page where you have more information about the migration process. There is a red arrow pointing at the "Got it, I'm ready to get started" button at the bottom

You can migrate projects from any Basecamp 2 account you own. If you're on multiple Basecamp 2 accounts, you'll be asked which one you'd like to move projects from.

When you migrate a project, everyone on that project will be added to Basecamp 4. Anyone in your company will be added as an Employee user. All other users on the on the project will be moved over as outsider users in Basecamp 4. This is because Basecamp 2 and Basecamp 4 handle clients in different ways.

After that you'll see an important reminder, followed by a list of projects:

You can move over active and archived projects. Any archived Basecamp 2 projects you move will stay archived in Basecamp 4. Projects that are in the trash can't be moved over.

Click the Move over  button to start moving a project over:

Please be patient, especially if you're moving a project with lots of files. Those can take some time to move! You'll get an email once your project is in Basecamp 4. 

Once everything has been moved over, your Basecamp 2 project will be archived, and you'll see your project in Basecamp 4.

Alas, client projects won't be moved

Basecamp 4 is a pretty big switch so we don't automatically import clients. (Here's how working with clients in Basecamp 4 looks! 🤩) You'll need to remove the clients and turn client access off in Basecamp 2. 

Do not invite your clients to your shiny new Basecamp 4 account just yet! First, remove Basecamp 2 clients completely before moving any projects over to Basecamp 4.

In Basecamp 2:

  • Click Invite more people and then click The Client tab.
  • Remove any and all clients shown there.
  • Click Turn this option off .

Now back to Basecamp 4! You can follow the guide to move non-client projects from Basecamp 2 to Basecamp 4. 

Anyone who had access to a Basecamp 2 project will appear in Basecamp 4 as an Employee (if they're in your company) or an Outside Collaborator. If you had removed Clients from your project, you can invite them into Basecamp 4 whenever you're ready. You can also convert a non-client user into a Client if needed.

Some FAQs around moving projects over to Basecamp 4:

Will people be notified about the project moving?

Nope. We don't do anything to tell people that you've moved a project from Basecamp 2 to 4. But once the move has finished, they'll have access to the new Basecamp 4 account, and they'll see it in their list of accounts on Launchpad.

Will everyone in my Basecamp 2 account be added to Basecamp 4?

No, anyone who created content in the migrated Basecamp 2 project, including clients, will be automatically added to your Basecamp 4 account when you import your first project. Clients may appear as Outside Collaborators but an admin or an owner can switch them to a client at any time.

What if I change my mind, and want to go back to Basecamp 2 for my project?

No problem! You can simply unarchive your Basecamp 2 project, and pick up where you left off. That said, anything you added to the project in Basecamp 4 won't be reflected in Basecamp 2 so you'll need to copy and paste that over manually.

Will I have to keep paying for Basecamp 2?

It depends. If you want to keep creating new projects in Basecamp 2, you'll need to keep paying for it, otherwise you can keep it for free. The next page in this guide will give you a full rundown.

Can I move projects over from Basecamp Classic to Basecamp 4?

Kinda. There's no direct way to move your projects from Basecamp Classic straight over to Basecamp 4. If you'd like to though, you can move your Classic projects over to Basecamp 2, and then from Basecamp 2 over to 4.

If you do move projects from Classic to Basecamp 2 to Basecamp 4, you will need to wait until you've moved your Classic projects to Basecamp 2 before you put Basecamp 2 on a free, preserved plan.

Next up: How to keep Basecamp 2 for free →