Back up and restore documents and data from managed apps

Learn which options to choose to back up and restore documents and data from MDM-assigned apps in iOS and iPadOS.

You can use Mobile Device Management (MDM) to assign an app to a specific user or device. When you use MDM to install an app, you have these two options:

  • Prevent backup of the app documents and data
  • Remove the app when the MDM profile is removed

These options help determine whether and how you can back up and restore app documents and data.

Back up and restore app documents and data

App documents and data may be included when you back up an iOS or iPadOS device to iCloud, Finder or iTunes, depending on the options you choose when MDM installs an app:

  • If you choose “Prevent backup of the app data”, users can’t back up or restore documents and data for that app.
  • If you choose “Remove app when MDM profile is removed”, users can back up data for that app, but they can only restore the data to the same device. If they restore the backup to a new device, the data isn’t restored.
  • If you choose neither option, users can back up and restore app data to the same device or a new device. Some apps may also choose to exclude data from backups, or prevent their data from being restored to a different device.

For more information, see your MDM solution documentation.

Reinstall managed apps

If the data in a managed app is restored from iCloud, the app will be reinstalled automatically if it was assigned to a user. It also will be reinstalled automatically if it was assigned to a device and the backup was restored to the same device.

The app won’t be reinstalled automatically if the backup is restored by Apple Configurator, Finder or iTunes.

If the app wasn't reinstalled automatically, MDM can reinstall it.

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