Restore iPhone backups

If our iPhone or iPad has been restored after a software problem, if for some reason we have lost very important files or if we have switched to a new Apple device we can restore iPhone or iPad from a backup previously created from iCloud or Apple applications available for Mac (Finder) and for Windows (iTunes).

In the following guide we will show you step by step what to do to restore iPhone or iPad from a backup, showing you what to do before proceeding with the restore and how to do the operation from the Apple device, from the Mac and from a PC with the Windows operating system.

READ ALSO -> Factory reset iPhone and iPad by erasing data

1) Preliminary operations

Apple update

Before proceeding with the restoration of the backup, we advise you to update the operating system of the iPhone and iPad to the latest version availableso you don’t have any problems during the whole process.

This precaution is often ignored and it leads to unexpected problems every now and then: we can in fact restore old backups to new versions of iOS/iPadOS but we cannot restore backups made on the latest version of iOS/iPadOS to an outdated device (for example an old iPhone or iPad reused for an emergency, waiting to buy or repair the new one).

To update the iPhone and iPad we advise you to read our guide on how to download updates on iphone and ipad.

After updating the iPhone or iPad let’s make sure of also update the apps that we will use on Mac and on Windows for recovery; on Mac that’s enough update the macOS operating system to keep Finder up to date, whereas on Windows we will have to download the latest version of iTunes.

2) Restore iPhone or iPad from iCloud

iPhone iCloud

The easiest way to restore iPhone or iPad from a backup is to use the backup present your iCloudthe cloud space used by all Apple devices to store personal data together with device backups.

Before proceeding, let’s make sure that the backup of the Apple device has been correctly performed by taking us to the path Impostazioni -> ID Apple -> nome iPhone -> Backup iCloudthen format the device and then proceed with the recovery by opening the app Settingsopening the menu generalsdoing tap su Transfer or Erase iPhone and pressing low on Initialize content and settings.

At the end of the restore procedure, access the iPhone or iPad, connect to a Wi-Fi network, log in with our Apple ID, press on Restore with iCloud Backup and select the most recent backup in the cloud. Now we just have to wait for the backup to be downloaded and applied to our Apple device.

This method can also be used to transfer data from an old iPhone to a new device, although it is preferable to use the function Transfer (present in the menu Transfer or Erase iPhone) to transfer data between two Apple devices.

3) Restore iPhone or iPad from Mac

Backup on Mac

If we have a Mac or MacBook we can restore iPhone or iPad from a backup by connecting the Apple device via USB cable to the Mac, pressing the icon at the bottom Finderclicking on the name of the iPhone in the side menu and finally pressing on Restore a backup.

This procedure is useful for restoring a backup saved on your Mac’s internal memory, but only if we had proceeded to create one in the past (by selecting Back up all iPhone data to Mac and using the key Back up now); in fact, it is not possible to access the backup stored on iCloud (accessible only with the procedure seen in the previous chapter).

If we have more than one backup of the iPhone or iPad saved in the Mac memory, just press the button Manage backups to access the window for managing all the backups performed.

To learn more, we can read our guide on how connect iPhone to Mac to sync and transfer data.

4) Restore iPhone or iPad from Windows PC

iPhone PC

If we made a backup with iTunes and Windows we can restore it easily by connecting the iPhone or iPad via USB cable, opening the iTunes app, clicking on the thumbnail icon of the phone or tablet at the top and going to the menu Summary.

From this screen we can restore iPhone or iPad from a backup by pressing the button Restore a backuppresent under the section Backup.

Also in this case we must have made at least one backup via iTunes in the past in order to use the function, as also seen in our guide on how to manage iPhone from PC with iTunes.


After resetting the iPhone or iPad with one of the methods seen above they will come restore all the most important personal information (directory, messages, personalized settings) while the apps will be downloaded later: this is because the apps are not present in the local backup, where instead only a list of the apps we had installed is saved.

To learn more we can read our guides on how to transfer data from old to new iphone come on how to save photos, contacts and messages on iPhone.

If the iPhone no longer works or crashes on startup we can try to start it in DFU mode, as seen in the guide on restore iPhone dead, if it no longer turns on or does not charge the battery.


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