Why Does My PS4 Keep Saying Copying Add On?

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Key Takeaways:

  • The “Copying Add-On” message on PS4 indicates an issue adding new content to a game.
  • Potential causes include corrupted data, insufficient storage space, network errors, and problems with game discs.
  • Solutions include power cycling the PS4, cleaning discs, restoring the database, reinstalling games, and freeing up storage space.
  • The message is common with games like Call of Duty that have large updates and add-ons.
  • Preventative measures include keeping the PS4 properly ventilated, using wired internet, and regularly backing up save data.


Seeing the “Copying Add-On” message flash on your PlayStation 4 screen can be annoying and confusing. This messaging indicates there is some issue adding new downloadable content or updates to one of your games.

When you install new add-ons for a game, the PS4 needs to copy the files and integrate them properly. If errors occur during this process, you end up stuck at the “Copying Add-On” stage. The console remains frozen on this message unable to progress and launch the game.

This comprehensive guide will examine all the potential reasons for the “Copying Add-On” issue on PS4. You’ll learn what causes the problem, how to fix it using various solutions, and preventative measures to avoid it happening in the future. With the help of detailed troubleshooting tips and expert technical insights, you’ll be able to resolve the “Copying Add-On” message for good and get back to enjoying your games.

Understanding what triggers this error message is the first step towards identifying the proper fix. Let’s explore the main culprits behind the “Copying Add-On” issue.

What Causes the “Copying Add-On” Message on PS4?

There are a few common causes leading to the “Copying Add-On” error on your PS4 console:

Corrupted Data

Corrupted data is one of the most common reasons for the message. Glitches during the copying process can corrupt game data files, add-on files, or system data on the PS4. This prevents the new content from being integrated properly. Power outages, improper system shutdowns, and firmware updates going wrong can all result in corrupted data.

Insufficient Storage Space

Today’s game updates and add-ons can be massive in size. If your PS4 is running very low on storage space, the console may not be able to complete the copying process for new content. This is especially common if you have the 500GB base PS4 model.

Network Errors

For add-ons and updates downloaded directly on the PS4, network errors can disrupt the download and installation. Poor Wi-Fi connectivity, using a proxy connection, or flaky internet can all trigger network issues.

Disc Read Problems

If you are installing add-on content from a game disc, reading errors may occur if the disc is dirty, scratched, or damaged. This interrupts the copying process.

Software Bugs

Some games are more prone to bugs related to add-ons, notably titles like Call of Duty. Bugs in the game software’s code end up causing issues when new content is copied over.

Now that you know what’s behind the “Copying Add-On” message, let’s explore solutions to fix this error on your PS4.

How to Fix “Copying Add-On” Issue on PS4

Here are the recommended troubleshooting steps to resolve the “Copying Add-On” problem:

1. Power Cycle the PS4

The first solution is to power cycle your console. This means completely turning off the PS4, unplugging the power cable for 2-3 minutes, and then plugging it back in to boot up the system.

Power cycling helps reset the console and clears out any corrupted data or software issues. It essentially gives the PS4 a fresh start for the copying process.

2. Clean Game Discs

If you’re installing add-ons from a physical disc, inspect it closely for dirt, smudges, scratches, or damage. Use a microfiber cloth to gently wipe and clean the bottom shiny surface of the disc if needed.

Damaged or unclean discs can lead to read errors that interrupt the copying process. Proper disc cleaning can resolve this.

3. Download Add-Ons Within Game

Some games have known issues installing updates and add-ons externally from the home screen. Call of Duty titles are notorious for this.

Navigate within the game interface itself and find the update or add-on content. Initiate the download from directly within the game. This circumvents any software bugs.

4. Restore PS4 Database

Rebuilding the PS4 database helps clean up corrupted data that could be interrupting the add-on copying process. Your game saves will not be deleted.

To access the database rebuild option, boot into Safe Mode by holding the power button for 7-8 seconds. Choose option 5 – Rebuild Database. This may take a while to complete.

5. Reinstall Problem Game

If all else fails, uninstall the problematic game entirely from your PS4 and then reinstall it fresh. This gives you a clean slate ensuring no corrupted files are left over inside the game folder.

Be sure to backup your saved game data either via PS Plus cloud storage or on a USB drive so you don’t lose your progress.

6. Free Up Storage Space

Check your PS4 storage breakdown under Settings > Storage. If it’s over 85% full, delete unused games, apps, and captures to free up space.

The copying process requires ample storage. If space is completely maxed out, you’ll run into errors. Expand storage if needed by adding an external HDD.

Following this comprehensive troubleshooting guide should help you isolate the cause of the “Copying Add-On” message and implement the right fix. Let’s also go over some tips to avoid this issue in the first place.

How to Prevent “Copying Add-On” Errors on PS4

Here are some best practice tips to minimize errors with game add-ons:

  • Keep your PS4 properly ventilated – Overheating can lead to data corruption. Ensure vents are dust-free and consider a cooling stand.
  • Use wired internet for downloads – Wireless is prone to interruptions. Use an Ethernet cable for large downloads to prevent network errors.
  • Regularly backup game saves – Leverage PS Plus cloud storage or a USB drive to backup data. This ensures you won’t lose progress if a game needs to be reinstalled.
  • Close other apps while copying – Keep the PS4 focused solely on the copying task by closing any other open games or apps during the process.
  • Update games individually – If you have multiple game updates queued, install them one at a time rather than simultaneously for best results.

Following proper usage and maintenance best practices for your PS4 will help minimize general errors and keep things running smoothly. But despite your best efforts, the “Copying Add-On” message may still pop up occasionally. Be sure to use the troubleshooting steps outlined in this guide to identify the cause and implement the right solution to get your games back up and running.

Frequently Asked Questions About “Copying Add-On” Issue on PS4

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about the “Copying Add-On” error message on PlayStation 4 consoles:

What games most commonly have this error?

Call of Duty titles are the most prone to “Copying Add-On” errors when installing new updates, map packs, and DLC additions. The large size of the add-ons seems to trigger issues.

Is the copying add-on message serious?

While frustrating, this issue is not normally serious. In most cases it can be resolved using the troubleshooting tips provided in this guide. The message simply indicates a problem integrating new content.

Can I use my PS4 while an add-on is copying?

No, you should avoid using your PS4 to launch other games or apps while an add-on is being copied. This can further corrupt data. Just leave the console idling on the copying screen until it finishes.

How long does “copying add-on” take to copy?

There is no definitive timeframe since it depends on your specific add-on size and internet speed. Smaller add-ons usually copy within 5-15 minutes. Larger DLC packs can take over an hour.

Does restoring PS4 database delete game data?

No, restoring the database does not delete or reset any game progress and data. It simply helps clean up corrupted system files that could be causing the copying error. Your saves will remain intact.

Can bad sectors on a HDD cause copying add-on errors?

Yes, if your PS4 internal hard drive has developed bad sectors, it can potentially lead to file corruption during the copying process and result in this error. Replacing the old HDD may be necessary.

Accurately diagnosing the cause of PS4 “Copying Add-On” errors allows you to implement the proper fix. In most cases, the issue can be resolved through simple troubleshooting steps without loss of game data. Be sure to follow the preventative measures provided in this guide as well. With this advice, you can get past annoying copying errors and enjoy your PS4 gaming without interruptions.

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