12 Replies Latest reply: Sep 20, 2009 12:26 PM by _soro_
Hoggorm Level 1 (0 points)

For some time now the syncing between my iPhone and iTunes has started taking a very long time... It has normally taken not more than just a few minutes.

This is not really a problem, just a question. It will now take more than 20-30 minutes to sync - even though there are not more than a few new songs or a program, or two, more that shall be transferred.

I do not know when it started (maybe with the installation of OS 3.0?).

Any ideas why it takes so long?


Dell, iPhone OS 3.0.1, Vista
  • biggc306 Level 1 (0 points)
    reboot ur iphone before u sync it i've done that and it was was backed up & synced in a few mins.
  • Hoggorm Level 1 (0 points)
    Unfortunately it does not seem to help to reboot the iPhone before syncing.

    I started to sync about an hour ago (the iPhone is about 3/4 full) and it is still not more than about 10% complete. iTunes is still making a backup of my phone, and the syncing itself does not seem to have started yet at all...

    I hope some out there can help me with this extremely slow syncing. It is impossible to add music, programs or video when it takes this long...

  • LoRob Level 1 (10 points)
    iPhone Syncing can be slow with OS 3.1 and iTunes 9. To speed up iPhone syncing, download photos to your computer, then delete all photos in the Camera Roll on the iPhone. It makes a big difference. Here’s how:

    1. Ensure the iPhone is connected to your computer.

    2. Open iPhoto.

    3. Select the iPhone in the Devices list in the left column.
    4. Select all your photos in the camera roll.

    5. Make sure to uncheck ‘Hide photos already imported’. This is important so you will be able to delete all photos in the Camera Roll on your iPhone after the sync.
    6. Click Import All.
    7. Make sure all your photos imported properly (check the # of photos in the dialogue box that appears)
    8. Click the Delete Photos button at the end of the import.
    9. Make any new albums you want, delete any photos you might have previously imported.
    10. Quit iPhoto
    11. In iTunes, select your iPhone under Devices in the left column
    12 Click on the Photos tab. Select any new events or albums you created or want to sync back to your iPhone
    13. Click on the Sync/Apply button
    14. Watch in wonder how much quicker your backup of the iPhone proceeds

    I can't believe how much quicker my sync is after downloading 212 photos from my camera roll. My backup used to take forever. Now things are much quicker. Can't believe such a simple thing made such as difference.
  • TWParker Level 1 (10 points)
    For me it's not the camera roll. I've done an erase all content, restore, set up as new iPhone... There is nothing on the phone, and it still took at least an hour to sync 10 apps.

    I let it run for 5 hours overnight... And I don't have a single photo or song on it. The sync isn't just slow, it gets slower and slower until it hangs completely.

    I've also noticed when I undock or reboot the iPhone, it is very slow to respond for a few minutes.
  • chrisbragg41 Level 1 (5 points)
    My solution to the multi-hour backup that was happening while syncing my phone was to remove all the news apps I had on the device. Once I removed the New York Times, USAToday, and Wall Street Journal, my backup & sync went from literally several hours to a couple of minutes.

    I'd read somewhere a while ago that the news apps held on to everything they downloaded in cache, and that the backup was trying to back all this data up. So, until Apple changes the backup process to not include trying to backup everything on the phone, or the app developers quit caching and hanging on to everything that the news apps pull down, the only solution (for me anyhow) is to not use the news apps.
  • Stryke Chng Level 1 (0 points)
    i do not sync my photos with iPhoto. Instead i import them with Lightroom. Also I sync other folders containing photos. How now?
  • LoRob Level 1 (10 points)
    You should still be able to delete photos with Lightroom. If not, you can delete the photos from your camera roll directly on your phone, although it can be a tedious process.

    The main principle is to keep your Camera Roll pretty small, or it will slow down your sync.
  • fsuscotsman Level 1 (0 points)
    I have several news apps and didn't have the long synch times until 3.1. This has to be something that Apple did to change the system.
  • Stryke Chng Level 1 (0 points)
    i imported my camera roll into Lightroom, then deleted the phots on my iPhone. and trying to sync again.
    still taking forever.
  • Stryke Chng Level 1 (0 points)
    i just found out that deleting the iPod photo cache folders actually rectified the 'hanging' sync.
  • TWParker Level 1 (10 points)
    Well, whoop-de-$#!^, I'm now on my third 3GS.

    The Genius Bar tech was convinced the problem was with my desktop box, so we restored the phone, set up as a new phone, and synced it... at first I thought I was going to look like a fool, because it started to sync music at normal speed... but as soon as I added some apps, it slowed to a crawl and froze when I canceled the sync.

    We restored again and synced it from a Genius Bar Macbook... same problem. The culprit seemed to be syncing an app, any app, and the brain damage would return.

    The (formerly brash, rude, but now humbled) tech handed me a new phone and said "We're going to send this one to Apple Engineering. I hope they get back to us, because we've never seen this problem before"

    Message was edited by: TWParker
  • _soro_ Level 1 (0 points)
    I'm having the same problem. Syncing with my Thinkpad used to take about 2 minutes maybe and syncing with my brand new Macbook Pro is taking at least a quarter of an hour, which really surprised me as I had assumed the sync would be faster with another Apple device if anything. My Macbook also gets really warm, so something must be going on other than just some file transfers. I do have the New York Times app installed and also NetNewsWire, which some people pointed to as the culprit. Still, sync should be quick, since it used to be on Windows.