If you’ve backed up your iPhone on your Windows PC and you can’t see the folder, then this guide will help you locate it. You will also learn how to change your iPhone backup location to another drive or folder for easier access.
Why Can’t I View iPhone backup files?
Although your iPhone backup isn’t placed on your desktop or in plain sight, it doesn’t mean that you can’t access, let alone view it. In fact, this data is stored in the Application Data folder (AppData) which normally hides its contents. To view them, you need to make these hidden files visible by navigating to Windows explorer > View (found on the top menu). Check Hidden Files for it to show files inside AppData folders.
Now that you’ve enabled hidden folders, here is a quick guide to where your iPhone backup is stored and how to access it.
Where Does My iPhone Backup Go?
Your iPhone or iPad varies where it stores backup data depending on the version of Windows you use. Here are the paths where iTunes stores your iPhone backup depending on your Windows OS version:
- For Windows 10 and Windows 8, you will find your iPhone backup stored in:
- For Windows 7, your iPhone backup is stored in the following folder:
- Windows XP users will find their iPhone Backups in:
C:\Documents and Settings\USER\Application Data\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup
In each case, replace the word USER / USERNAME with the name of your PC.
By default, the iTunes stored your iPhone backup on Local Disk C. However, this isn’t the most convenient place to keep your offline backup since you can easily lose it when Windows OS crashes or runs into other problems such as space issues. There are three ways to go about this issue:
- Backup your iPhone/iPad to an external hard drive
- Change iTunes backup location
- Delete unnecessary iPhone backup files
How to Change iPhone Backup Location on Windows 10
To change the backup location, copy your iTunes folder to a new location first. By default, your backup folder is stored at C:\Users\*USERNAME*\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup. To transfer it to a new location, follow these steps:
- Copy the folder to the new location (for example at the root of an external hard disk drive (HDD). It may be Local Disk D or depending on its name.
- Go to the original folder location C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\MobileSync\
- Delete the folder “Backup” within or rename it “BackupOld” to keep it
- Press Shift+Right Click to open a Command windowfrom that location.
- Type: mklink /J “%APPDATA%\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup” “D:\iTunes Backup
*Remember there is a space between mklink and /J. Your link won’t function if you don’t leave the single space.
What is in iPhone Backup Files?
Your iPhone backup contains:
- Call history
- Calendar &Reminder
- Information on iPhone and iOS Version
- iPhone Photos &videos (from iPhone Camera and photo Stream)
- SMS& iMessage chats
- Third party Applications like WhatsApp messages, Instagram e.t.c
- Voice memos
You’ve Made It!
Congratulations! If you followed those steps, then you have successfully created a junction to a modified backup folder. Your iPhone backup will now be stored to your new preferred location.
Alex is an IT technician who shares his experiences with Apple devices occasionally. He has a collection of Apple devices (from iPhone 4) and has recently started trying out Android.
IG: @I M_Alex