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Do you want to erase this iPhone and sync with this iTunes library?

47430 Views 25 Replies Latest reply: Feb 20, 2014 11:18 PM by turingtest2 RSS Branched to a new discussion.
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Rob A. Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Feb 11, 2013 10:51 AM

Why ON EARTH would I want to do this??  Come on Apple, copy protection aside, this is the stupidest prompt in the history of prompts.


The basic problem (if you Google it) that many many many many legitimate purchaser's of music are running into is this prompt.  And here is why:


1.  We have an iPhone with a bunch of purchased songs on it and was at one point working with another iTunes library.

2.  For whatever reason our computer crashes, the computer is gone/sold, not available, dead, pick your poison, it happens.

3.  We setup a new computer and install iTunes and get a prompt to "Authorize" this computer (apparently we get 5 authorizations total).

4.  We try to get all the songs from our iPhone back into iTunes and click the Sync button and ...

5.  We get the following:


The iPhone "Your iPhone's name" is synced with another iTunes library.  Do you want to erase this iPhone and sync with this iTunes library?


An iPhone can be synced with only one iTunes library at a time.  Erasing and syncing replaces the contents of this iPhone with the contents of this iTunes library.


Really?  This is what I have to do, wipe out all my purchased songs so that iTunes and sync with a new library?  At what point did Apple think this idea was even remotely in the best interest of their customers?  Seriously?


So now I'm stuck with an iPhone with songs on it, a computer with songs on it, but neither able transfer songs ... Happy Happy Joy Joy.  This is NUTS!?  Why punish people that you can verify they've purchased their songs with this bizarre scheme ... and further more, what if some of my songs on my iPhone were brought in from a valid CD purchase?


So my only way out of this craziness, is to use a 3rd party app that will hack the transfer for me?  This is good how?  I'm sorry, but at what point did Apple's $40 Billion (yes Billion) profit for 2012 instigated this sort of treatment to valid paying customers?


So ... here I am, anyone have a solution to this using "valid" means (without losing all my music) or is 3rd party hacks my only option?



iPhone 4S, iOS 5.1.1, iMac ... moved to PCs and Windows 7
  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,845 points)

    Please read the whole user tip carefully. In it I explain that you can use third party tools to get access to all your media on the device. This must all be recovered to a local library. You can then backup the device and subsequently restore it without losing information (since you're recovered all media and other data is included in the backup) and the backup/restore process will make your new library the home for the device in future. I also provide a link to a backup tip to avoid you having to go through the process again next time a computer or hard drive dies on you.



  • Chris CA Level 9 Level 9 (73,330 points)

    Backup, backup, backup...

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,845 points)

    Rob A. wrote:




    So if I understand you correctly ... I can't move or sync content that was imported via my own CD's that is now on my iPhone back over to my computer?


    Not with iTunes as your only tool, no.


    The ONLY way I can proceed is with an iPhone backup and then restore that iPhone backup to my computer rather than my iPhone?  I assume this will trigger yet another "used activation"?


    No you need a third party tool that will copy your other non-iTunes purchased media and photos not in the cameral roll across to your computer. (Some are listed, you can search the web for others).


    When you have recovered all the media you want you can then backup the iPhone to the computer (this backup ONLY includes application data and settings, and the cameral roll. After you have backed up this data to the computer you can then immediately restore the recently made backup to the iPhone. The data in the backup will obviously be copied back but all media must have been added to the library or it will be removed from the device.


    Your lost computer will count as an "activation" as will the new one. Apple devices don't add to the count. You can reset all your activations (including those you can't physically access) every 12 months should the need arise.


    Am I the only one that thinks this is the most crazy and bizarre process of simply moving a music file from one of my devices to another of my devices?  Especially ones that were imported from CDs.


    You still have the CDs? You can import them again. You sold, gave away, threw away the originals? Technically you no longer have the right to listen to the tracks you ripped. Is it inconvenient? Sure. One might argue that the very reason Apple & iTunes were able to drive the move to digital music to start with is that their system was designed to prevent the casual use of their devices as a means for "the kids" to simply "gift" their music libraries to each other without the tediously time-wasting efforts that the previous generation had to go through with home-taping. This no doubt helped get the content owners on board. Of course memory sticks and portable hard drives now make it trivially easy to copy content from one computer to another and indeed to simply backup your own content against a disaster but most people don't do either. Likewise they don't read instructions or terms and conditions until they are inconvenienced, and then complain. You and I might both wish iTunes made it easier, but it doesn't. And this isn't the place to complain about it. Use iTunes Feedback. You want help, it has been offered. Please read and inwardly digest it all properly this time. It does explain what you need to do to recover your data and safeguard it for the future.



  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,845 points)

    Apple state that they don't respond directly to feedback. They do claim to read it. They're obviously not going to change their minds on certain matters, e.g. Flash on iOS, however vocal the call. But I suspect user feedback can sometimes affect change. There was an outcry when iTunes went all grey. An immediate reversal might have been embarrassing, but hidden in all the other things that some people don't like about iTunes 11 you might notice that if you enable the sidebar the colour has gone back into the icons for Music, Podcasts, the Store, Special Playlists, etc. I suspect two-way sync isn't up for consideration however.



  • Chris CA Level 9 Level 9 (73,330 points)

    And what happens when my 5 activiations run out over the course of my life time?  Call Apple to beg to reset the count?


    Just do it yourself.

    It is 5 activations at any one time, not 5 over a lifetime.

    See this -> iTunes Store: About authorization and deauthorization

  • JMulex Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Why should I erase and recovery all my music from iPhone?? There not a simple way to transfer music??

    At the end of it, I am able to recovery all my music, even illegal one if I had them... circling!!!


    Apple headache!

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,845 points)

    No, there is not a simple way to transfer media not purchased from the iTunes store. As far as I can tell iTunes was originally designed not to allow reverse transfer of content to get the music publishers on board. Backup your library, migrate it properly when you get a new computer, and there isn't a problem. The user tip above has links to third party tools that can help rescue your media.



  • Nikkster Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm stuck! I just need to add that one more song but in order to do so... I have to erase 61 songs in my iphone, have to go to the process of this and that.... of this and that.... Forget it!!! I now have to look for my old laptop and use that thing to add songs via itunes! Geeezzzz! Can you Apple people make this any easier???

  • minakochen926 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi tt2,


    I have an iPhone 4 with 54 voice memos on it that I recorded from year 2011 to 2012 and I have backup all of them to iTunes on my computer (windows 8).


    A few months later, my computer crashed & I reformatted it without hard drive backup. Then I re- installed iTunes and tried to back up my iphone again. I got a prompt to "Authorize" this computer. I tried to backup total 72 voice memos including the new 18 voice memos that I recorded in year 2013 from my iPhone back into iTunes again and clicked the Sync button and I got the following message:


    “ The iPhone "Your iPhone's name" is synced with another iTunes library.  Do you want to erase this iPhone and sync with this iTunes library?

    An iPhone can be synced with only one iTunes library at a time. Erasing and syncing replaces the contents of this iPhone with the contents of this iTunes library.”

    I dare not to click the Sync button. Instead, I clicked Backup button. My 18 new voice memos (recorded in 2013) successfully backup into iTunes but those 54 old voice memos from year 2011 to 2012 was not backup into iTunes.


    I am stuck now dare not to update my iphone to new ios; worry that all the old voice memos will disappear after update.


    My iphone ios still the old 4.3.3 os and I never update before. Just browse through google search & I can see there is a lot of problem after update to the new ios7. I want to make sure these important voice memos will have a backup in case something goes wrong ...


    I have read your post to Rob but I am not sure as Rob's case is slightly different than mine. I have tried out some of your suggestion but I still got the same message. In fact I am not sure whether the message actually cause the problem.


    Is there any way to back up my old voice memos back to itunes or I need to use third party tools?

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