Get help finding missing information in iCloud after restoring an iOS device

Follow these steps if information seems to be missing after restoring your iOS device from an iCloud backup.

Troubleshooting steps for all types of information

iCloud stores the last three backups for each of your devices.

  1. Verify that you correctly restored your iOS device from iCloud. Data stored in iCloud (such as your iCloud contacts, calendars, and bookmarks) is pushed to your device when you sign in to iCloud. However, to restore your device's local data (such as photos and videos in your Photos tab, or Camera Roll in iOS 7), you'll need to restore from an iCloud Backup.
  2. Make sure that your information is among the types of information backed up to iCloud.
  3. Determine whether you need to enter your password for any apps, such as iTunes or Game Center. Some apps need your password before your information can be completely restored.

Additional details for certain types of information

Music, movies, TV shows

Your iCloud backup includes information about the content you have purchased, but not the purchased content itself. When you restore from an iCloud backup, purchased content is automatically downloaded from the iTunes Store, App Store, or iBook Store.*

  • If you use iTunes Match (where available), you can use it to download previously matched or uploaded songs, albums, or playlists to your device. To recover content that wasn't purchased from the iTunes Store or isn't available through iTunes Match, sync your device using iTunes on a computer.
  • To recover podcasts and audiobooks, sync your device using iTunes on a computer. Podcasts and audiobooks are not included in iCloud backups.
  • To recover content purchased from iTunes with a different Apple ID, sign in with the Apple ID associated with that purchase.

* Automatic downloading is based on iTunes in the Cloud availability by country, and previous purchases may be unavailable if they have been refunded or are no longer available in the store. Some previously purchased movies may not be available in iTunes in the Cloud.

Photos

Photos and videos in your Photos tab (or Camera Roll in iOS 7) are included in your iCloud backup and will download to your iOS device during the restore process.

  • Photos in My Photo Stream are already stored in iCloud, so they are not part of your backup. iCloud stores the photos uploaded to My Photo Stream for 30 days. To keep the photos in your photo streams on your device and make them part of your backups, save these photos to your Photos tab (or Camera Roll) or another album.
  • To view My Photo Stream or a shared photo stream, make sure the photo stream features are turned on in Settings > iCloud > Photos.
  • To recover photos that originally synced to your device from your computer, sync your device using iTunes on a computer.
  • To restore Photos tab (or Camera Roll) photos to an iPhone or iPod touch, the iCloud backup must be from an iPhone or iPod touch. To restore Photos tab (or Camera Roll) photos to an iPad, the iCloud backup must be from an iPad.

Messages

Messages (including iMessage and carrier SMS or MMS pictures and videos) are included in your iCloud backup and will download to your iOS device during the restore process. To restore messages to an iPhone or iPod touch, the iCloud backup must be from an iPhone or iPod touch. To restore messages to an iPad, the iCloud backup must be from an iPad.

iCloud Drive and Documents in the Cloud

If you're using iCloud Drive or Documents in the Cloud, your iWork documents aren't included in your iCloud backup. If you want to manually back up your iWork files, you can save them to your Mac or PC.

If you restored your device and can't find your iWork documents, check these places:

  • If you're using Documents in the Cloud, open the app on your iOS device, and look for your documents.
  • If you're using iCloud Drive, go to iCloud.com and open the iCloud Drive app.

Calendar and contact data

When restoring Calendar and Contact data from an iCloud backup, your settings and old data are restored first. Then iCloud pushes your updated Calendar and Contact data to the device, overwriting the old data. This update happens automatically and usually occurs before you notice the old data.

Mail and Notes data

  • Mail data is not included in your iCloud backup, but your backup does include the settings for your iCloud email account and any other email accounts that you've added to your device. After the restore process is complete, your device retrieves any email messages available from iCloud and your email service providers.
  • If you set up your device to store Notes data in iCloud (Settings > iCloud > Notes), iCloud sends those notes to your device after the restore process is complete.
  • Notes data stored by a third-party service, such as Microsoft Exchange, is not backed up to iCloud. Consult the provider of that service for information about how to retrieve the data.

App data and settings

When you restore your device, iCloud downloads your apps from the App Store and restores their data.

  • Data for some third-party apps may need to be downloaded again from the app provider.
  • Apps that Apple or the app provider has removed from the App Store cannot be restored or downloaded.
  • Apps that weren't backed up to iCloud, but are still available in the App Store, can be downloaded again.
  • When restoring from an iPhone or iPod touch backup to an iPad, or vice versa:
    • The order in which app icons are displayed onscreen is not preserved.
    • Only third-party apps and their data are restored, excluding apps that are not compatible with the device. For example, an app that is compatible only with iPad will not be restored to iPhone.

Information about products not manufactured by Apple, or independent websites not controlled or tested by Apple, is provided without recommendation or endorsement. Apple assumes no responsibility with regard to the selection, performance, or use of third-party websites or products. Apple makes no representations regarding third-party website accuracy or reliability. Risks are inherent in the use of the Internet. Contact the vendor for additional information.

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