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Dear Aunt TUAW: Recovering iPhone data and media


Dear Aunt TUAW,

I'm from the Philippines and I would just like to ask for your help. I don't know if the news had reached you guys but there had been some massive flood lately in our country brought about by super typhoons storming over our land. Anyway, I own an iPhone and thank God I brought it with me when the flash flood came which sadly destroyed my PC and laptop. Now I have a new desktop which leads me to my problem. I'm afraid to install iTunes in it because if ever I'd sync my phone with the new desktop, I'm pretty sure all my iPod files will be gone. Are there any work around for it (so that I can still save my files on my phone)? Will jailbreaking help (as a last resort)?

Thanks and more power! =)

Best regards,

Rand B.

Read on for Auntie's answer...

Dear Rand,

I'm so sad to hear about the flooding and typhoons although I'm grateful you're okay, despite the loss of your PC. Fortunately, there are several tools that allow you to recover your data from your iPhone back to a computer. On the Macintosh, there's PhoneView from Ecamm, which I have used and can recommend. For Windows, I googled up Anapod CopyGear, Pod to PC, and TouchCopy. I have not tested any of these myself.

These packages let you off-load your media files (audio, video, podcasts, and so forth) and, at least in the case of PhoneView, access other items like your notes. You won't be able to recover every detail, but you can save as much as these applications allow.

Do not restore or jailbreak your iPhone until after you've recovered your data. Add that data back into iTunes, and you'll be ready to sync to the new computer. Here's hoping everything works out as best as possible.

Love & hugs,

Auntie T.

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