iPhone Sync/Backup Mac-Formatted iPhone on Windows

Discussion in 'iOS 10' started by chatbr, Aug 8, 2017.

  1. chatbr macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2015
    #1
    Hello Mac Rumors,

    I am dealing with a very specific situation and I'd appreciate some help.
    My iPhone has always been synced/backed up on my Mac but it needed some repairs so it'll be gone for a week. I thought I'd be able to use my iPhone on my desktop windows pc but seems that is not the case.
    Whilst Windows does recognize the iPhone and allows me to extract photos in explorer, iTunes does not recognize it, so I am unable to backup or sync my device. I google the issue and can't find any definitive answers other than iPhones are not OS-formatted ( like iPods were ), hence there shouldnt be any issues syncing between OSs.

    ( also tested using different USB ports, completely different Windows computer and made sure iTunes was up to date. No luck )

    Any ideas or there really is such limitation?

    TIA

    ==
     
  2. jr866gooner macrumors 65816

    jr866gooner

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2013
  3. chatbr thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2015
    #3
    No error messages. I even get the pop up on my iPhone to allow the PC to be synced. So everything seems to be working.
     
  4. pika2000 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    #4
    In what way you want to use the iPhone with your Windows PC?
    What I don't like about iOS-iTunes syncing is that it still lives in the old days of only syncing with a single computer, for good reasons (two different computers might not have exactly the same contents to sync). So iPhone syncing with a Mac cannot just sync with another computer.

    I would just rely on iCloud for backups and OTA app updates for the days your Mac is being repaired.
     
  5. chatbr thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2015
    #5
    I just wanted to do local backups on it. I dont rely on iCloud for backups and its always good to have local backups anyway. Its the only reason I need to sync my iPhone with a computer these days.
    I still don't get the limitation. While I understand disabling syncing in iTunes to avoid problems with matching contents, I dont understand why it would completely disable you to see the iPhone plugged in iTunes just to make local backups.
    I just asked a friend for his Macbook to do a test, and indeed while no Windows pc can see the iPhone, all Macs can! His Mac was able to see my iPhone with no issues what so ever. My guess is that there really is a limitation for syncing Mac formatted iPhones on Windows and I don't see this reported anywhere.

    Too bad.
     
  6. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #6
    How many times in a week do you need to backup? Surely just back it up before you send the mac away and minimise any changes you make during that week, when you get it back make a new backup if you need/want to...
     
  7. chatbr thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2015
    #7
    Oh I am totally fine with the backup thing, but you may be missing the point.
    This is not an issue thats gonna affect me directly, but may affect others.
    Let's just say you have a mac and you always synced your iPhone there.
    You decided to sell your Mac or something happens with your Mac and you need to move to a Windows PC.
    There is no way you can ever sync your iPhone with your new computer unless you do a full restore. Isnt it weird?

    Maybe its one in a million cases but idk, bothered me enough to come share my experience.
     
  8. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #8
    Then I think the "issue" is that a device can only be synced with a single library, that is true in Mac-world too, nothing to do with it being a windows machine.
     
  9. pika2000 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    #9
    Haven't been using Windows iTunes to sync my iDevices for quite a while so I wouldn't know how it is doing nowadays.
    I do know everytime I connect a new iDevice to my Mac, it asks to trust the computer. I wonder if that authentication has some issues with certain versions of Windows/iTunes for Windows.

    As for offline vs online backup, since this is temporary (just having your Mac repaired), it's just a fail safe plan. Once you get your Mac back, you can continue doing offline backups.

    For users wanting to sell their Macs, they do have to do some homework to move their iTunes library from the old Mac to the new Mac. It's not super hard, but it's not exactly simple either. It is doable though (I have moved my iTunes library through 4 different Macs). The only issue is the lengthy time copying the whole library (including backups and apps) if you don't have SSD. This is why most people don't do backups (too confusing for the normal user), and also why Apple is doing the iCloud backup (easier for most user as it is automatic).

    And to put a more serious note, iCloud backup is actually quite robust at this point. And let's face it, the iTunes syncing/backing up thing is a legacy way when Apple still thinks iPhone as another iPod (rewatch the first iPhone announcement, and that's exactly what Steve Jobs implied) in terms of syncing. It's no wonder it has issues today.
     

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