Getting started with iMazing

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If you're new to iMazing, then you're on the right page! We have linked our most popular guides here so you can quickly find all the information needed to start using iMazing.

  1. Download and install iMazing
  2. Connect your device
  3. Activate iMazing
  4. How does iMazing work?
  5. What can I do with iMazing?
  6. iMazing Mini
  7. Learn iMazing's interface
  8. The iMazing cheatsheet

1. Download and install iMazing

iMazing is a computer application that needs to be installed on your Mac or Windows PC. You do not need to install anything on your iPhone, iPad, iPod, Apple TV or Apple Vision Pro.

Download and install iMazing on your Mac or PC computer.

See the following guides for instructions on how to install iMazing on a:

2. Connect your device

Start using iMazing by connecting your device to your computer with a USB cable.

After the first connection, you can either stick to the USB connection or switch to a wireless one using Wi-Fi.

For recent devices that lack a USB port, such as Apple TV or Apple Vision Pro, pair them via Wi-Fi (currently, only available on macOS).

For more information, see Connect your device to iMazing.

3. Activate iMazing

Many of iMazing's features are available for free. However, to unlock unlimited data exports, gain access to advanced options when restoring a backup, update or reinstall iOS, manage devices and more, you'll need to purchase a license from our store.

For more information, see Manage your iMazing license.

4. How does iMazing work?

Under the hood, iMazing uses various technologies to connect to your mobile devices and grant you access to your data. A few key concepts:

  • iMazing doesn't store any of your data online. Any data you access and export is stored locally on your computer, ensuring your privacy.
  • You can directly access Photos, Videos, Music, Books, and third-party app files. For other types of data such as Messages, WhatsApp chats, or Call History, these are obtained from a backup of your device.


A backup is a snapshot of the current state of your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. When you backup your device, you save its current state.

On your computer, backups consist of a large collection of files with scrambled names.That's where iMazing works its magic.

iMazing reads through the thousands of files that make up your backup, and displays its contents in a simple and transparent graphical interface.

For more information, see Manage your backups with iMazing.

iMazing vs iTunes, Finder (macOS), the Apple Devices (Windows), and Music Apps

There are several differences between Apple's mobile device management apps, such as iTunes, Finder, Apple Devices, and iMazing. Here are three key concepts to understand these distinctions:

  • Multiple Backup Snapshots vs Single Backup
    Apple apps maintain only one backup per device, which could lead to potential data loss. For example, if you backup your phone in iTunes or Finder after deleting some Messages chats, the new backup will overwrite the previous one, resulting in the loss of the deleted conversations.
    In contrast, iMazing stores multiple backup snapshots for each device. This allows you to safely backup and access data that is no longer on your device.

  • Transfer vs Sync
    iTunes, Finder or Apple devices can be configured to automatically synchronize data between your Music/iTunes Library and your device. This ensures that the data on your device matches what's on your computer. However, this can sometimes result in data loss, for instance, if you attempt to sync your device with a new computer.
    In contrast, iMazing allows you to manually determine what to add to each device. This design gives you the highest level of control over your data.

  • Browse & Export Data vs No Data Access
    Apple's applications are primarily designed to transfer content to the device, not for accessing or exporting the device's data.

5. What can I do with iMazing?

Well, there's lots you can do with iMazing, but most features can be organized in the following categories:

BrowseView the contents of your devices or your backups - including iTunes/Finder backups.
ExportTransfer data from your device to your computer.
ImportTransfer data from your computer to your device.
BackupSave snapshots of your device on your computer.
RestoreRestore a backup to another device. You can choose to restore everything in your backup, or only selected datasets and apps.
TransferDevice to device data transfer. Essentially a backup and restore procedure merged into one simple wizard. Here too, you can choose to transfer everything, or only selected datasets and apps.
AdvancedTools and features for our power users, developers and enterprise customers. Not featured in this guide

Below you'll find links to some of our many guides. Simply click on the dataset that you want to manage, and we'll take you to the appropriate guide page.

If you'd like to know more about how iMazing handles different types of data, have a look at our cheatsheet.

Browse and transfer data between your computer and your device

photos iconPhotos
messages icon messages iconMessages & WhatsApp
messages iconApps & App Files
addressBook iconContacts
Notes iconNotes
voice memos iconVoice Memos
books iconBooks
music iconMusic & Videos
music iconRingtones
phone iconVoicemail & Call History
safari iconSafari History and Bookmarks
calendar iconCalendars
calendar iconFile System

Backup and restore data to your device

backup iconBackup a device
backup iconRestore a backup
transfer iconTransfer data from a device to another
extractor iconManage device backups

6. iMazing Mini

iMazing comes packaged with iMazing Mini, a free companion application running in the background that backs up your iOS devices automatically and wirelessly!

To learn more about iMazing Mini, see Getting Started with iMazing Mini.

7. Learn iMazing's interface

Learn all about iMazing's Interface, and unlock all its secrets.

8. The iMazing Cheatsheet

Though iMazing makes interacting with your data really simple, Apple mobile devices are complex little things and not all types of data can be managed in exactly the same way.

Here's a little cheatsheet of what's possible for each data type:

Backup &
Apps Datayesyesyesyesyes
Call Historyyesyesyes
Voice Memosyesyesyes
Safari History & Bookmarksyesyesyes
Health Datayes
Apple Watch Datayes
Home Datayes
Other Data & Preferencesyes

Congratulations, you've successfully gone through our Getting Started guide!

We hope that this introduction helped you. If you need help, don't hesitate to contact us.