Why Is iOS File Recovery So Difficult?

iPhones and iPads are hugely popular, but that also means they are being dropped on pavements and in toilets in record numbers. Recovering data from any kind of damaged device is tricky, but it's especially hard with iDevices as they use a unique file system that isn't easily understood (or repaired) by consumers.

Picture by Cameron Parkins

Data recovery firm Kroll Ontrack says that it has seen a 350 per cent increase in requests for retrieving data from damaged iDevices over the last year. Data recovery in any context isn't cheap, so ensuring you have a good backup in place is vital. It's especially important with iOS devices, since they don't have a file system that can be browsed by the end user with the same ease as a computer or an external drive. As a result, if one file gets corrupted, finding anything on the device can be difficult.

If you're using the full cloud backup capabilities of iOS 5, this should be less of an issue, since you can set the device to automatically upload photos and other data. However, the photo option only works over Wi-Fi, which means people relying solely on their SIM might get into trouble. Regular backups are vital, but if you have crucial data on a damaged iDevice, I'd be seeking out a professional rather than messing with it yourself.


    Why the fuss about loosing data if you smash it? If you actually loose the phone you are equally stuck. So anyone who is not backing their data up should be happy to loose whatever is on there. Trouble is most people approach it based on "that will never happen to me". Backup. Backup. Backup.

    I'll just add that IOS is fully encrypted unless jailbroken.... so you can't really blame DRM for that. I would much rather a phone that is fully encrypted and rely on backups than not have full encryption and risk loosing all my data to someone.

      Wait..it's encrypted, but can be accessed by simply jailbreaking.

      So what you're saying is that whomever finds your phone only needs to jailbreak it to get at your private data. Great security!

    Can iFunbox be useful if iTunes thinks your phone needs restoring but its still connecting? I've never been in that situation (yet, luckily).

    How about giving a solution?

      In this context, the solution is "use a professional", I think.

      I recommend iPhone Backup Extractor, it easily retrieves files from backup plus you can use this software if you have a corrupt backup as well. The support guys helped me and I managed to recover essential data from my damaged backup. Here are the files in an iOS backup: http://www.iphonebackupextractor.com/blog/2012/apr/23/what-are-all-files-iphone-backup/ you can also use the app to convert some data in readable formats such as .txt and .csv. Cheers!

    I never noticed it was difficult. I've always used MobileMe and now iCloud and all my email, contacts, calendar, etc was always backed up and shared with my other Apple toys. My iPhone and iPad always sync at work and at home over WiFi. Last year, I dropped my iPad, so I exchanged it at the Apple store for $99 entered my mobile me account and by the time I was leaving the store, I already had my email and contacts etc set up. When I got home all my apps, books etc... were back on the pad. No dramas at all.

    Is it possible to NOT have a backup? Every time I sync my iDevices they back up... Someone please tell me I can turn it off! Waiting 10 minutes for a wifi sync to start gets annoying.

    If you didn't make a backup, also can recover the deleted or lost file, if they are not overwritten, still store in iDevices, but you need some program for help. Get the answer here: http://www.iphone-data-recovery.com.

    Last edited 15/04/14 4:36 pm

    If you have backup for your iPhone/ iPad/ iPod touch, you can retrieve them from backup file, get the guide from apple http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1766
    If you haven't, you have to ask from some third party iphone data recover software. For example, Macgo Mac iPhone Data Recovery can help you retrieve the lost photos, contacts, messages and call history on Mac platform. By the way, it is holding a three months' giveaway until the end of June. If you are still in need of data recovery thing, here is the chance. And with the wide use of Apple products, it will play a more important role than ever. Get the activity detail http://www.macblurayplayer.com/mac-iphone-data-recovery.htm

    Well, It is highly recommend implementing a regular backup plan in order to minimize any chances of permanently losing data.
    Anyway, we can still recover the deleted data from iphone with the help of a software like Vibosoft iPhone Data Recovery

    Last edited 16/05/14 6:50 pm

    I don't think it's difficult for me.
    There are various ways to retrieve deleted files on iPhone.
    Using iTunes Backup
    1. Disable automatic syncing in iTunes
    2. Connect your iPhone to your computer
    3. Restore the iPhone from a backup.
    Using iCloud
    1.Erase your iPhone.
    2.Select the "Restore from iCloud Backup" option.
    3.Allow the content to download onto your iPhone.
    Using Third Party Software
    1.Download, install, and open data recovery software like iPhone Data Recovery
    2. Start scan
    3. Preview and recover

    Last edited 09/02/15 9:44 pm

    For iPhone users, you can try Coolmuster iPhone Data Recovery software to get iPhone data back. Install it on your computer

    Steps on how to Recover iPhone data from iTunes backup:
    Connect the iPhone to the computer with a USB cable.
    Open iTunes.
    If you have a new or erased iPhone, iTunes will prompt you to restore from backup.
    Otherwise, Control-click on your iPhone under DEVICES in the left menu.
    Select Restore From Backup...
    Choose the backup you wish to sync and click the Restore button.

    Last edited 25/07/16 11:56 am

    Coolmuster iPhone Data Recovery offers you the possibility of recovering lost data without backup from your Apple device. It help recover deleted files such as contacts, messages, photos, videos, notes.Just install and launch the Coolmuster iPhone Data Recovery program on your computer, it takes only a few seconds to scan and get data back.

    Last edited 26/07/16 12:20 pm

    In fact, iPhone data recovery is not so difficult to use, what you need is just connect your iphone to computer and run the iPhone data recovery software on your computer. it will detect your iPhone and scan all deleted data on your device, then recover them to your computer.

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