iTunes can back up your mobile devices to a default location on your computer's system drive. But what about backing up your iPhone or iPad to an external drive or NAS? To a specific folder or partition?
iMazing's backup management features are 100% free. With iMazing, you can easily set an iPhone backup location, and make safer iOS backups which are not overwritten. iMazing tracks changes in your backups, which lets you keep many backups of a device at a fraction of the disk usage cost. And if needed, you can even set a different backup location for each of your devices.
Download and install iMazing on your Mac or PC computer
To change your iPhone or iPad's backup location:
💡 Tip: To ensure backup success and the best possible storage space optimization, we recommend using an external drive formatted in NTFS, APFS or macOS Extended Journalled.
💡Tip: If you select a disk, iMazing will create an iMazing.Backups folder at the root of your external hard drive. If iMazing doesn't have permission to write at the root of that disk (because it's a Time Machine backup disk, for example), you will see the warning below. In that case, simply create a folder manually via the Finder or File Explorer at the root of the disk, and select that folder as backup location in iMazing.
💡Tip 2: You can manage the default backup location of new devices as well as loaded backup locations in iMazing's Preferences - see this article on iMazing Preferences for more information.
iMazing is capable of backing up iOS devices to network drives such as Synology NAS, Time Capsule or SMB shares, but there are a few limitations to be aware of.
To back up to a network drive on Windows, it must first be mapped to a letter:
Once the drive is mapped, you can add it as a backup location in iMazing just like any other external drive.
Time Machine backups to a Time Capsule can take very long, and will considerably slow down any simultaneous iOS backups to the same location.
Personal clouds such as Western Digital's My Cloud Home are not compatible with iMazing. In general, sync solutions which first copy contents to a temporary local image before uploading them modify the backup as it is being made, which makes them unsuitable as an iOS backup location. They can be used to store old backups though.
Need help accessing existing iTunes backups in iMazing? Please jump to our dedicated guide here. If you wish to back up your iPhone or iPad to the same location as iTunes, keep reading!
In macOS 10.14 Mojave, Apple introduced new security features to better protect user data against malware and spyware. Users must now explicitly authorise apps to access specific data, including iTunes backups.
If you select the iTunes backup location as backup location for iMazing backups, iMazing will display a screen explaining how to grant access:
Simply follow the instructions in this window, and you will see iMazing and iMazing Mini both added to the macOS Preferences' Security & Privacy->Privacy Tab->Full Disk Access trusted apps list:
iMazing handles sharing its backups with iTunes very well. iTunes backups will be archived before iMazing backs up so that they are not overwritten - they are simply integrated to iMazing's backup snapshots.
💡 Tip: You can of course rescind permissions at any time: launch the macOS System Preferences app, select Security & Privacy -> Privacy tab -> Full Disk Access, and remove iMazing from the list.