How to Backup iPhone to External Hard Drive on a MAC
If you own an iPhone, you will want to safeguard your data through regular backups. Losing essential photos, contacts, and messages to theft, damage, or software issues is disastrous. Relying solely on iCloud or iTunes may need more extensive data or backup control.
Redirecting iPhone backups to an external hard drive is a sensible alternative, offering better storage, faster transfers, and enhanced security. This guide outlines how to backup iPhone to an external hard drive.
How Do I Backup My iPhone to External Hard Drive Using Mac?
To Backup iPhone to External hard drive on your Mac, you need to follow these steps:
Step 1 – Create an iPhone Backup on Your Mac Device
- Open the Finder through the Mac dock or by pressing Option+Cmd+Space (ensure you have connected your iPhone and external hard drive to your Mac computer).
- On the Finder, select your iPhone storage in the Locations subsection.
- Click on Trust; you will get the same trust prompt on your iPhone device; tap Trust again.
- Go to the General tab and click on Back up all of the data on your iPhone to this Mac.
- Click on Apply
Doing this will successfully create a backup of your iPhone on your Mac. To Backup iPhone to external hard drive, continue reading:
Step 2 – Move the Backup File to Your External Hard Drive
To backup your iPhone storage to an external hard drive through your Mac, do the following:
- On the Finder menu, go to your iPhone storage’s name, click on Manage Backups
- Press control and click on the backup you have made. Once you have done so, click on Show In Finder.
- Long-press control, click on the backup folder; click on Copy after that.
- Select your external hard drive on the left pane and click on Paste.
This will successfully transfer your backup to your external hard drive. Now it is easier for you to retrieve data if your iPhone experiences a failure or you upgrade to a newer model.
How Do I Backup My iPhone to External Hard Drive Using iTunes?
If you are looking to backup iPhone to an external hard drive using iTunes, then you may follow the given steps below to do so:
- On your Mac computer, open iTunes (also connect your iPhone to your external hard drive via USB)
- Click on your iPhone storage in the bottom left corner of the Devices section.
- On the backups section, tick Back up all of the data on your iPhone to this Mac
- Click on Back Up Now
- After the Backup is Finished, go to iTunes > Preferences
- Click on Devices and find your backup
- Long press control and click on your backup, click on Show In Finder
- Copy your backup
- Go to your external hard drive and paste the backup folder there.
How Do I Backup My iPhone to External Hard Drive Using Windows?
To Backup iPhone to external hard drive using Windows, do the following:
For photos only
- Using a USB Cable connect your iPhone to your computer.
- There will be a prompt on your iPhone regarding transferring data such as photos; Tap on Allow
- Find the iPhone folder on File Explorer. It will either be the general iPhone name or your own device’s given name.
- Copy your photos, connect the external hard drive to your computer and paste the images into the respective folders.
For Transferring Data on Your External Hard Drive using iTunes
- Connect your iPhone and external hard drive to your PC
- Open iTunes
- Click on the Device icon on the top of iTunes
- Under Automatically Back Up, select This computer.
- Click on Back Up Now
- Type %appdata%\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup on the File Explorer to quickly find your backup.
- Locate your backup and copy it
- Go to your external hard drive folder and paste your copied folder there.
Above is another method to Backup iPhone to external hard drive using Windows.
How Do I Change My iPhone Backup Location?
Things might get tricky if you want to change the current iPhone backup location. Carefully follow the steps below:
- Open your iPhone backup folder using Windows File Explorer by typing %appdata%\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup.
- To change the location of the backup folder, you will have to delete, either rename or move the current backup folder; once you have done any of these, proceed.
- On the MobileSync folder, hold shift and right-click; you will either see the Open command window or the Open PowerShell window.
- Once you have clicked that, type the command “mklink /d Backup “[desired-new-backup-path]“.
- Press Enter. Your iPhone will create a symlink and change the backup folder location.
Creating a backup of your iPhone onto an external hard drive is the best approach for safeguarding your data and optimising your device’s storage capacity. Having a reasonable amount of backups can be helpful in a worst-case scenario where you either lose your data by hacking or a hardware failure of your iPhone.
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