Move Your Passwords from Bitwarden to KeePass on Mac or iPhone

Moving to KeePass from Bitwarden can provide many benefits. In this post, we’re going to explain why you might want to switch to KeePass and how to do it quickly and easily.

If you’re only interested in the how-to, you can skip straight to the step-by-step guide.



KeePass is an open standard file format for storing password databases. Databases are stored as KDBX files. These files can be opened and edited by any KeePass compatible app or client.

This has various advantages. For one thing, you won’t have to go through a laborious import/export process the next time you want to use a different password management app! Once you have your KDBX database file, you can instantly and seamlessly open and edit it in various other apps. This allows you to experiment and find the best app for your needs.

You can use different password management apps on your phone and your computer with the same database file. You could do the same thing with different apps for Mac, Linux and Windows computers.

There are many more reasons to switch to KeePass, see here for just a few.

How to Switch to KeePass

In order to follow the steps below, you’ll need to download the Strongbox app on your iPhone iPad or Mac.

Strongbox is a free and open source password manager that uses the KeePass file format. It’s available on iPhone, iPad and Mac.

There’s a Pro version of the app available but the free version has everything you need to import, view and edit your passwords. And if you later decide you don’t want to use Strongbox, it’s easy to use your new KeePass database with another compatible app; there’s no lock-in.

Step 1: Exporting from Bitwarden

  1. Go to Bitwarden on the web and unlock your vault normally found here
  2. Click Tools in the top menu bar and choose Export Vault (see Screenshot below).
  3. Make sure you select JSON as the File Format and click Confirm Format.
  4. You will be asked to re-enter your master password. Do so and then click Export Vault.
  5. Save the resulting JSON file in a convenient location available for step 2 below.
Bitwarden Export

Step 2: Import Bitwarden JSON using Strongbox

Choose from the instructions below depending on whether you’re importing using your Mac or iPhone/iPad…

2a) On your Mac (macOS)
  1. Open Strongbox, and click File > Import > Bitwarden (JSON) menu item – see screenshot below.
  2. Locate and select the Bitwarden JSON file that you exported in Part 1 above. Strongbox will confirm the import was successful.
  3. You now need to set a master password for your new Strongbox database. This can be the same as your old Bitwarden master password if you like.
  4. Lastly, save your new Strongbox database either locally or on your favourite cloud drive.
  5. Check your entries in Strongbox to make sure all of your data has been imported successfully.
2b) On your iPhone or iPad (iOS)
  1. Move the Bitwarden JSON file that you exported in Part 1 above into a location that can be accessed by your iPhone/iPad.
  2. Open Strongbox and tap the Plus Symbol (+) in the top right of the screen.
  3. Tap More > Bitwarden (JSON)… and follow the on screen instructions
  4. Check your entries in Strongbox to make sure all of your data has been imported successfully.

Step 3: Cleanup

  1. Delete the JSON file that you exported from Bitwarden.

Next Steps

If you want to get familiar with Strongbox, check out our Getting Started guide. We also have extensive help articles available.

And if you have any feedback or issues, don’t hesitate to contact our support team: