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WhatsApp data sync: help please - can you do it?

asked 2019-05-30 15:31:05 +0200

boniface gravatar image

Hello sailors,

I've recently (happily) joined the community and am struggling to make WhatsApp recognise / sync with the backup files from my old Android phones' WhatsApp.

QUESTION: Has anyone managed to load their old WhatsApp conversations into Sailfish X from Android? How?

Please can you give me some advice about how you've successfully loaded the chat data backup into your Sailfish X? I'm on a XA2 using the Aptoid store's download.

NOTE A - I understand that I need to give the back up file to WhatsApp at exactly the right location and moment but I've tried everything I can think of. I'm talking about the file: msgstore-2019-05-30.1.db.crypt12 B - most online tutorials say that WhatsApp will prompt the user with an option to load a backup file after you register you phone number. This has never happened on Sailfish X. C. WhatsApp doesn't seem to have an option for manually loading a backup file.

I've attempted these various ways of getting WhatsApp to load the chat data:

1. A. Installing WhatsApp B. Register my phone number. C. Place the crypt12 file into home/Nemo/android_storage/WhatsApp/databases Result = No conversations loaded. No prompt from WhatsApp to load a backup.

  1. (Uninstalled WhatsApp first) A. Place the crypt12 file into home/Nemo/android_storage/WhatsApp/databases A. Install WhatsApp B. Register my phone number. Result = No conversations loaded. No prompt from WhatsApp to load a backup.

  2. (Uninstalled WhatsApp first) A. Created a directory on my SD card (formatted correctly for Sailfish X) ... Media/sdcard/WhatsApp/databases B. Place the crypt12 file into that directory C. Install WhatsApp B. Register my phone number. Result = No conversations loaded. No prompt from WhatsApp to load a backup.

Thanks in advance for your comments 👍

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Not very conversant with Android support on X and XA2 but on my Jolla 1 both Whatsapp and GBWhatsapp can use my old conversations without hassle on home/nemo/android_storage/Whatsapp I suggest you move the entire Whatsapp folder from your old android device to home/nemo/android_storage prior to registering your account.

DameCENO ( 2019-05-30 16:32:14 +0200 )edit

Backing up in google drive was an easy way, when I changed from Jolla1 to xperia x.

hsjpekka ( 2019-06-03 07:59:57 +0200 )edit

2 Answers

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answered 2019-06-03 00:33:40 +0200

SagaciousT gravatar image

Today I finally made it after weeks of unsucessful attempts. I tried to transfer the backup from an Xperia X to an XA2 and always ended up with a found backup of 0kb and dated 01.01.1970 that could not be imported into WhatsApp. I tried all the tips read in various threads here. This is how I've proceeded today:

  1. Made a backup on the Xperia X and copied the WhatsApp folder in android_storage to the SD card
  2. Moved SIM and SD card to the XA2
  3. Installed Aliendalvik control on the XA2
  4. Installed WhatsApp on the XA2
  5. Gave WhatsApp memory access in Aliendalvik Control
  6. Opened the terminal and got root access with devel-su
  7. Moved to the android_storage folder with cd android_storage
  8. Changed the user and group of the copied files from nemo:nemo (from Xperia X) to media_rw:media_rw (as required by XA2) with chown -cR media_rw:media_rw WhatsApp
  9. Stopped Aliendalvik in the settings
  10. Executed chown -cR media_rw:media_rw WhatsApp again in the terminal
  11. Started Aliendalvik again in the settings
  12. Started WhatsApp and finally found the readable backup

I don't know if all steps had been necessary, but this worked now.

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Thank you! I got it working as well following your steps.

picklerick ( 2019-06-08 02:18:25 +0200 )edit

Did it as described and it worked :)) It Seems the difference to all the other described attempts in various threads and the crucial step here is to grant Whatsapp memory access in Aliendalvik Control?

Paul ( 2019-06-13 17:27:38 +0200 )edit

answered 2019-05-30 16:26:58 +0200

Alex gravatar image

You need to change the permissions of the backup file as mentioned here:

  1. Reinstall whatsapp
  2. Put the backup into the corresponding folder
  3. Activate the developer mode and set a password (Tutorial)
  4. Execute the following commands in the terminal:


    chown -R media_rw:media_rw /home/.android/data/media/0/WhatsApp

  5. Open whatsapp and the backup should be recognised

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Hi Alex, That's for the astute answer. I've run into an issue in the process (sad face), restoring the back up fails.

step by step - I followed your instructions, however the terminal told me that there is no such directory. So I changed the directory path to reflect where the WhatsApp data is held on my phone. EG:

chown -R media_rw:media_rw /home/nemo/android_storage/WhatsApp
  • The terminal accepts this.
  • When starting the fresh install of WhatsApp, I'm prompted with a message asking if I want to restore a back up.
  • I select to restore.
  • The screen shows "Preparing the restore"
  • A second later WhatsApp tells me the restoration fails.

I attempted this twice, same results both times.

Question 1. What is the command to change the folder permission back to normal so I can delete the contents? Question 2. Any idea why it failed?

This is a real chin scratcher.

boniface ( 2019-05-31 01:20:11 +0200 )edit

@boniface You do not need to restore the permissions, they are just being changed so that Android is able to read the file (and the permissions to the folders need to persist to keep Whatsapp working). You can just delete it and try it again.

Which backup file are you saving to the folder? The official tutorial tells that you have to copy the "msgstore.db.crypt.12" file (you may rename your backup file by removing the date).

Try to repeat the steps above but do not open Whatsapp directly (step 5), instead reboot your device beforehand (or restart the android layer) and try if it works after that.

Alex ( 2019-05-31 11:21:53 +0200 )edit
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Asked: 2019-05-30 15:31:05 +0200

Seen: 378 times

Last updated: Jun 03