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iTunes does *not backup* save data/games (!?) Apps listed here

10038 Views 8 Replies Latest reply: Feb 16, 2013 1:02 PM by nunyobizbiznatch RSS
glhicks Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Oct 27, 2010 6:36 PM
Hi everyone,

So my friend ran into a problem with her iPad. She had a recent backup, and restored from it. All apps, books, music has been restored but certain apps (I have listed a few below) did not restore her save games, or save data local to that app. Some data was backed up, and of course some apps/games store their data in the cloud, but it seems almost all third party apps/games' user data is not backed up, or at least not restored from available back ups.

*Question 1:*
Does the iTunes backup manager backup save games of app data?

*Question 2:*
Is it possible to retreive the save data -perhaps the save data is still their on the iPad?

*List of apps effected:*
These apps were restored, but all save data pertaining to that app/game was lost after restoring from the iTunes backup facility. _All of these apps lost their data upon restore:_

* Angry Bird
* Broken Sword 2
* Hotel Mogul
* Secret of Monkey Island 2 Special Edition
* Sketchbook Pro
* Supermarket Mania
* The Brush
* The Success Story

I've compiled this list and posted this thread as a warning to users out there who may assume their save data is backed up but isn't. If anyone else can confirm games or apps where their data is not protected by iTunes Backup then I'd welcome you to share them here.

I think it's terrible that App data isn't backed up and restored comprehensively.

Thanks in advance, any comments welcome

Gary
iPad, iOS 4
  • lllaass Level 10 Level 10 (135,050 points)
    This article says the backup includes:
    "Application settings, preferences, and data
    "In-app purchases"
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4079

    However, the app itself is not part of the backup. During a restore it takes the app from the iTunes library.
  • JimHdk Level 7 Level 7 (21,590 points)
    glhicks wrote:
    Firstly, thank you for the contribution. I found that page quite helpful, but it does not address this issue of third party app/game user data:

    "You can use iTunes to sync content on your computer (such as music, applications, podcasts, videos, photos, notes, email account settings, contacts, calendars, and bookmarks) with your iPad."

    You have to read the whole article including the expandable (blue) items.

    Here is what the article says about backup save contents:

    Safari bookmarks, cookies, history, and currently open pages
    Map bookmarks, recent searches, and the current location displayed in Maps
    Application settings, preferences, and data
    Contacts
    Calendars
    CalDAV and subscribed calendar accounts.
    YouTube favorites
    Wallpapers
    Notes
    Mail accounts
    Autocorrect dictionaries
    Camera Roll
    Home screen layout and web clips
    Network settings (saved Wi-Fi hotspots, VPN settings, network preferences)
    Paired Bluetooth devices (which can only be used if restored to the same iPad that did the backup)
    Keychain (this includes email account passwords, Wi-Fi passwords, and passwords you enter into websites and some other applications. The keychain can only be restored from backup to the same iPad. If you are restoring to a new device, you will need to fill in these passwords again.)
    Managed Configurations/Profiles
    MobileMe and Microsoft Exchange account configurations
    App Store Application data (except the Application itself, its tmp and Caches folder).
    Per-app preferences allowing use of location services
    Offline web application cache/database
    Autofill for webpages
    Trusted hosts that have certificates that cannot be verified
    Websites approved to get the location of the device
    In-app purchases
    IPad 64GB, iPhone OS 3.1.3
  • lllaass Level 10 Level 10 (135,050 points)
    The only thing that I can think of is the developer did not properly code the app to store the data in the manner that the Apple backup program would backup.
  • JimHdk Level 7 Level 7 (21,590 points)
    glhicks wrote:
    Correct, I did read the article in full.

    But as I said before, +"clearly, in this case at least, 'per-app' data was not backed up, or at the very least, not restored."+

    Which makes me concerned about the accountability of iTunes' backup facility in general. I do not see any evidence that addresses this concern. And the Apple page uses the word 'can', as per legal requirement. There is no elaboration (from that page) that all per app user data is backed up.

    Thanks again,

    Gary


    Hmm... What I see in the document says:

    Information iTunes will back up

    • Safari bookmarks, cookies, history, and currently open pages
    • Map bookmarks, recent searches, and the current location displayed in Maps
    • *Application settings, preferences, and data*
    .
    .
    .

    I see will not can.

    By application data I believe that they mean application data generated by the application for the user, e.g., current game state, otherwise there would be no reason to save it. The same is true for application settings and preferences.

    Since the Apple document states that application data is saved then what you observed would be a bug and you should report it at http://www.apple.com/feedback/ipad.html and, possibly to the App developers as well.

    However, your evidence seems somewhat anecdotal and second-hand, i.e., "my friend ran into a problem with her iPad. She had a recent backup, and restored from it. All apps, books, music has been restored but certain apps (I have listed a few below) did not restore her save games, or save data local to that app".

    How do you know that her backup was current? or that the restore was done correctly? It's easy to forget when the last backup was done.

    I'd suggest running a new test with a known backup file to see if you can reproduce this problem before fully depressing the panic button.
    IPad 64GB, iPhone OS 3.1.3
  • nunyobizbiznatch Calculating status...

    Ahhh.. the beauty of a locked-down, psychotically peoprietary, crap OS.  Simply mirroring the HD's content gives up Apple's control to meddle in your affairs. It's too easy.... but forget it, end-user!!!!

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