Backing up iPhone in iMac thru iTunes

Discussion in 'macOS' started by kilowatt, Sep 30, 2013.

  1. kilowatt macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2013
    #1
    I am curious about the iPhone backup. I have a lot of important business stuff on my iPhone so I back it up often. The iMac that I use to backup the iPhone to is getting older, so I back that up often as well.

    I like the way I can get a new iPhone and iTunes will restore it exactly like my old one was, settings, apps, all of that. But one concern that I have is that I just realized that backing up iTunes doesn't seem to backup the iPhone backup as well since that is in a totally different folder.

    What I mean is that to backup iTunes you copy the iTunes folder. But the iPhone backup is in the Library~~~MobileSync/Backup folder.

    So is that true? If I lost both my phone and MAC computer, the backups that I have of iTunes won't also contain the iPhone backs ups?

    If so, can I just backup the iPhone backs ups in the Backup folder? I don't care to backup anything else in iTunes, including music or anything.

    Will that work? Would I be able to copy the Backup folder full of iPhone backs over to a new computer and have a new version of iTunes restore a new iPhone with it?
     
  2. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    Feb 19, 2005
    #2
    You can keep the backups from your iPhone and back them up to another hard drive. You can always also consider doing iCloud backup.

    I didn't know the iPhone backup wasn't included in the back up process of Time Machine. However, you weren't specific about how you back up your iMac. I would start including the folder itself or making sure you have a backup of your iPhone somewhere else. Also, yes, if you get a new mac, you can restore your iPhone from a previous backup from within iTunes.
     
  3. kilowatt thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2013
    #3
    Thanks for the reply.

    The way I backup my iMac is to copy the following items to an external drive:

    A) Documents (all my important stuff)
    B) iTunes directory (iPhone and iPad backups)
    C) iPhoto Library (pictures)


    I don't care about anything in iTunes (such as music or movies), I only use iTunes to backup my iPhone and iPad. Now I see that backing up the entire iTunes folder wouldn't backup the iPhone and iPad backups because they are in the Library~~~MobileSync/Backup folder. Is that correct?

    So in order to properly keep iPhone and iPad backups backed up, I only need the copy over the Library~~~MobileSync/Backup folder, not the iTunes directory, correct?
     
  4. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    Location:
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    #4
    I would backup everything from your home directory, including Library.
     
  5. kilowatt thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 29, 2013
    #5
    For what? What else do I need from there? It's over 27GBs, I would have to buy huge external drives. Please tell me what else I would need from there.
     
  6. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    West Suburban Boston Ma
    #6
    It's your choice what to backup. I merely said it's safer to back up more than less and then not have to worry that at some future date you will be missing important stuff. My home directory runs 160 gb and I backup to 2 TB drives, which are not that expensive.

    You don't need to follow my suggestion; it's your choice. Sorry for bothering you with what I thought was a helpful suggestion.
     
  7. kilowatt thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 29, 2013
  8. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    California
    #8
    It contains all settings and data not listed in the three folders you mentioned. For example, data for the OS X Contacts and Calendar apps is stored there as well as copies of all your Mail and Mail attachments (I'm guessing you have a lot of Mail here because 27GB is a very Large user ~/Library folder). Also all personal settings are stored there.
     
  9. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    Feb 13, 2011
    Location:
    Baltimore, Maryland
    #9
    I don't know where it was stated that iOS backups aren't included in Time Machine backups, as pondered in the 2nd post. Pretty sure they would be.

    To the OP: Are you not backing up your entire computer?
     
  10. kilowatt thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 29, 2013
    #10
    I use Gmail for e-mail and I am not worried about any settings to the iMac.

    ----------

    3rd post:

    The only thing I want are those items. The only application I use is QuickBooks in which the company file and all backups are kept in the Document folder. If I got a new Mac today I would only have to download a few apps such as Chrome, Adobe Reader, Gimp, Open Office, and QuickBooks. I could drop in my Documents folder and my iTunes and iPhoto backup and be back to normal in 10 minutes. No need to waste space by saving all kinds of unnecessary crap.

    My only question is about the iPhone and iPad backups. From what I could tell, they aren't kept with the iTunes backup so that has been a waste all this time. I am curious if I could drop in the old iPhone and iPad backups to a new computer in which iTunes has never seen those devices before and have it restore them? Or if I would also need the iTunes backups (which is a waste of space because of all the songs and TV shows that I have but don't care about backing up).
     
  11. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    Location:
    Baltimore, Maryland
    #11
    I don't know if just saving the iPhone backup files then adding them to a new computer will work or if they're tied to other System items such as particular preference files or the user account. That is the peril in your method. Have you tested your "back to normal in 10 minutes" plan or is it speculation?

    I don't see a problem with doing Quickbooks that way but when it comes to the Mac stuff you are in "unsupported" territory. This is why people spend $80 on an external drive and use Time Machine, Carbon Copy Cloner, or Super Duper to back up their system.
     
  12. kilowatt thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 29, 2013
    #12
    Yes, twice. What about it would be speculation? It's copying files, that's it.

    But that really has nothing to do with the topic. Why do people feel that they have to try and tell others what to do when it's clearly not what they are looking to do?

    Should I go out and buy 5TB drives and copy every file on my computer just to make some guys on the internet happy? I don't understand...

    I listed the 3 things that I want backed up: the documents folder, my pictures, and my iPhone and iPad backups. My question is about the iPhone and iPad backups. I don't accept "copy everything, all 27 extra gigabytes just incase!" as an answer to my question...
     
  13. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #13
    I just reread this entire thread to try and understand your reaction, and I guess I am missing something. All I see are posts from other users here trying to offer suggestions. If you are comfortable with what you are doing and you don't feel like the other suggestions made don't apply to you, nobody is trying to force you to follow them. Just do whatever you think works for you.

    There are users all the time who float through here who have tried to do a "fresh install" by just copying over say the Documents folder then they come back here asking endless questions about how to get all sorts of other settings back like they were. I believe the posts here were only a well intended effort to make sure you did not overlook anything.
     
  14. kilowatt thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 29, 2013
    #14
    Another person who can't answer the question... Thanks for the lecture :rolleyes:

    I saw a few other MAC forums, I'll try one of those, maybe someone there knows something.
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #15
    I think this is a great idea.
     
  16. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    Location:
    Baltimore, Maryland
    #16
    The OP is right, though. The answer so far is "we don't know".

    One thought: It may work today, but a System or iTunes update could possibly break it.
     

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