Currently Being ModeratedSep 9, 2012 4:09 PM (in response to igho.st)
I fixed this issue after a lot of time and pain (see below)
Seems to have come up on various threads so it seems to be an issue and should be escalated by Apple. They were none the wiser at the genius bar apart from telling me the iCloud backup is probably corrupted and I should call Apple care (as if that is going to do anything)
I experienced the same problem with the iCloud restore not working properly. I had my iPhone 4 replaced as the home button was defective. When attempting to restore an 9.5GB iCloud backup from the day before it just would not work properly. Firstly, half my apps did not restore, they would begin to download showing the progress indicator then just disappear, leaving my home screen naked. No big deal as apps can be downloaded again.
However, what was a big deal for me was the 1,625 photos on my camera roll, including many of the first year of my kid's life. The camera roll would say downloading x of 1,625 photos, download a few of them, then simply stop downloading any new shots. When I would restart the phone it did not show any downloading message, it believed the restore was complete. I tried about ten different restore scenarios, listed below, all of which gave me varying results (some resulting in all my apps restoring) but all of which would only give me some of my photos back.
What was a comfort was that I once got about 700 of the shots back. So the photos were still in the cloud rather than gone and this indicated that it was the restore process or the iCloud backup on my phone that was the problem. These are the things I tried in sequence as I despairingly tried to get my photos back...
Things I tried that DID NOT work
1) Erase all settings and attempt to restore again from scratch (four times)
2) Tried the restore from a different WiFi network (once)
3) Tried the restore from one WiFi network then switched to another once the restore 'hung' (once)
4) Tried the restore from an Apple store WiFi network (once)
5) Tried the restore from a previous iCloud backup (twice)
6) Had Apple replace the iPhone 4 (once)
With all of these I got a varying amount of my photos and apps back before it stopped restoring. I was also making the mistake (I learnt afterwards) of opening and moving between apps during the download to check progress.
Thing I tried that DID work
1) Did not plug the phone into my MacBook, I used the wall charger only to prevent any iTunes sync activity
2) Erase all settings and data, restore from the iCloud backup and input passwords in all the pop up windows once it reboots.
2) Open photos app gallery to see photos downloading and show the progress message "downloading xx of x,xxx"
3) Left it on this photo screen and did not touch the phone at all for the entire restore. I did not close the photo galley/camera roll app once, open any other apps.
Finally this time round it work and all my photos and apps restored in full. I am going to go back to syncing with iTunes as I don't trust iCloud for restores. It seems that iCloud does not handle photo restores that well, especially if the gallery is large. In short: Wall charger only, restore from iCloud, open Photos app, don't touch. Really hope this works for you too if you've had the same issue.
Currently Being ModeratedSep 9, 2012 7:02 PM (in response to igho.st)
ALWAYS sync your photos to a computer as a storage medium. You can either use USB to sync or with Photo Stream (if that works for you) to got copies of the photos to the computer. Do this as you would save photos from a camera to your computer.