If you need help restoring from an iCloud backup

If you need help restoring your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch from an iCloud backup, this article can help.

I can’t select an iCloud backup

There are several reasons that there might not be any available iCloud backups for your iOS device:

  • You have never successfully made a backup of your device. Check instructions for making backups in iCloud
  • Your device has an earlier version of iOS than what you used when you made the backup. 
  • Your backup might have been created with a different iCloud account. 
  • You haven’t backed up in 180 days. If you haven't backed up your iOS device to iCloud for 180 days or longer, Apple reserves the right to delete the backups associated with that device. Review the iCloud Terms and Conditions for more information.

I want to transfer an iCloud backup to a device that I already set up

The only way to restore from an iCloud backup is through the Setup Assistant. To get to the Setup Assistant on a device you already set up, you'll need to erase all the content on your device and set up your device as new:

  1. Tap Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings. 
  2. Then follow the steps in the Setup Assistant to set up your device using an iCloud backup.

Restoring my device from an iCloud backup is taking a long time

Restoring from a backup might take a while because of the size of the backup or the speed of the Wi-Fi network. For example, iCloud can take approximately 1 to 4 hours per gigabyte during a restore process.

There are several steps you can take:

  • In iOS 8 or later, check the progress of the transfer on your device under Settings > iCloud > Backup. In iOS 7, go to Settings > iCloud > Storage & Backup. If the restore process is underway, the iCloud Backup setting is dimmed.
  • Make sure that your device is connected to the Internet with reliable Wi-Fi. 
  • Make sure that your device is plugged in to a power outlet.
  • Check the Apple progress bar that appears while transferring a backup.

I want to use a backup of my iOS device for a different kind of iOS device

When you use a backup of one device for another kind of device, like an iPad backup for an iPhone, these types of data won't transfer:

  • Photos
  • Messages and attachments in Messages
  • Voice Memos
  • Apps that aren't compatible with the device you’re setting up 
    For example, apps compatible only with iPad won't be transferred to your iPhone.

A message says restore incomplete or some items could not be restored

If a message says "Restore Incomplete," it means that certain apps or content couldn't be restored from the iTunes or App Store. If you have this content saved in iTunes on your Mac or PC, try syncing your device with your computer to recover your data.

Another message you might see says that some items couldn't be restored. This can happen if you get disconnected from Wi-Fi in the middle of transferring a backup to your device. If you lose your Wi-Fi connection, the data that doesn't transfer usually includes photos, videos, or app content. If you see the message saying some items counldn't be restored:

  • Check to see if photos are still downloading. If so, a message says something like, "Restoring 350 of 1200 items." If the transfer is still in progress, wait for the process to finish. Your device needs to stay connected to a reliable Wi-Fi network and a power outlet the whole time. 
  • If your photos and videos aren't downloading, start over. Try to transfer the backup again and stay connected to Wi-Fi and a power source until the process completes.
  • If an app is grayed out or stuck loading for a long time, make sure you're connected to a Wi-Fi network. Then tap the app to pause the process, and tap it again to continue. If this doesn’t solve the issue, try deleting and re-downloading the app.

I'm asked to enter multiple Apple IDs

There are a couple of reasons that you might be asked for multiple Apple ID passwords:

  • Your backup contains purchases from multiple Apple IDs.
  • Your backup has music, movies, and shows that were tranferred from another iTunes account to your device.

If you don't remember the Apple ID passwords, you can tap Skip this Step to continue the restore process.

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