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kylealfrey_08 Level 1 (0 points)
Can anyone tell me why my iphone 3G is taking up to 8hrs or longer to backup?

Macbook, iPhone OS 3.1.3
  • Graham Outterside Level 4 (2,910 points)
    Thats not right as you're rightly guessed. there must be some bad data/corrupted data in there.

    I'm guessing that when you plug in the phone, the bar which shows how much music, video etc is on the device has a lot of 'Other' memory allocated ?

    And you have Facebook and/or LinkedIn App installed which are notorious for extending backup times.

    Let us know how much 'Other' memory there is in use.
  • Murray Ellis II Level 1 (0 points)
    woah woah woah, i thought all iphones took 10 - 24hrs to back up! I've had several generations and they've taken longer and longer as I've owned them.

    I have a brand new high end PC since I've also upgraded computers over the years of owning iPhones, and each PC, even this blazing new one takes forever to back up the iPhone.

    Right now my 3GS 32GB is backing up and its been going 12hrs, only 40-something% through. I started to look into this and found some information in the task manager of Windows 7 where it shows you the detailed processes that are happening. It looks like the only thing that's active is from 2 - 6 Mbps of "Network I/O" activity using the Apple backup process! What??

    I looked at the actual data on the Ethernet port and there is 0 data moving around, so its definitely the backup for some reason using a network IO to send data to the PC.

    Can someone fix this problem? My iPhone has now activated my morning alarm, and there's no way to turn it off, just "snooze" plus my screen has been on all night from the backup. I feel backups may actually kill my iphone and drive me insane.


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    Message was edited by: Murray Ellis II
  • Lawrence Finch Level 8 (35,018 points)
    There's something wrong with your phone, computer, or apps on the phone. I have about 120 3rd party apps on my iPhone, and it takes 5 minutes to back up. As has already been said, there are a couple of apps that cause long backups. Probably because they maintain a large cache. Deleting these apps, rebooting, then reinstalling them usually fixes the problem.
  • Murray Ellis II Level 1 (0 points)
    I've had this issue with several phones (so its not the phone)
    I've had this issue with several really fast computers (so its not the computer)
    I have had the same string of applications across phones as I upgrade them... so this could be the problem. But if the problem was with the app EVERYONE with the app would have noticed because its caused the issue on multiple phones I've owned.

    I don't own any apps that other people say may cause long backup times either.

    And even if the app used all 32GB of data for cache it shouldn't take more than a few hours to transfer over USB 2.0. As you can see, my task manager isn't even taxing the HDD at all, and for some reason is pushing data through the Network I/O.

    Could this still be an app/multiple app issue?
  • Lawrence Finch Level 8 (35,018 points)
    It's an app issue. If you don't think so, try restoring as a new phone and don't install any apps. I'll bet your backup takes under 5 minutes. Then add apps back a few at a time until the problem recurs. The suspect apps are those that display data retrieved via a web API, such as Facebook, Linked In, Twitter apps, news apps, etc.

    It appears to be caused by apps that maintain a cache in a large number of small files. It's the file count that causes the problem rather than the actual data volume. My backup takes 5 minutes on a full (<500 MB left) 32 GB phone. I have 400 MB Other (app working data storage) and 2.5 GB of apps.
  • Murray Ellis II Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for the tip! I'll trash any app that doesn't have "saves" I care about (i.e. games) and see what happens.
  • tal1971 Level 2 (245 points)
    I had a problem the other week where my iPhone was taking a long time to backup and I cured it by doing the following.

    Ensure you have a backup first of your iPhone. If you haven't, then connect your iPhone and when you see it on the list on the left handside of the iTunes window, right click on it and choose backup from the menu. Eject/disconnect the iPhone for the time being.

    1: In iTunes, click on the EDIT menu, then click on the DEVICES tab. In the device backup section of the little window, you will see the last backup of the iPhone. Select the backup and then click on DELETE BACKUP.

    2: Now, this can take a while but just be patient and do this when you have a hour or two (depending on how much you have on your iPhone). Connect the iPhone again and right click on it again and choose backup from the menu. When it has eventually finished backing up, eject/disconnect the iPhone. Now the next time you sync the iPhone, you should see that it backs up/syncs in no time compared to what it did.
  • RHinVA Level 1 (0 points)
    I sync my phone with my work laptop for contacts, calendars, notes, and apps. It usually takes less than two minutes. In fact, I did it twice today, and neither time could have taken more than this. I just tried syncing with my desktop for music and apps, and the backup has now been going for 45 minutes! So, I believe it isn't "just" the apps (I do have LinkedIn and facebook on my phone), but it has something to do with the machine AND the apps.
  • RHinVA Level 1 (0 points)
    Well, I had a meeting to go to; so, I canceled my sync while it was still backing up. I went to my meeting; came home; restarted the sync on the same machine; and, now, it backed up and synced all but the music in less than 5 minutes.

    I don't get it at all.
  • Murray Ellis II Level 1 (0 points)
    I read if you cancel a backup that is taking a long time, then come back and back it up it will go super fast cause its just appending the data it already backed up (checking for changes) but it doesn't have everything really backed up, almost like its a broken backup.

    you should delete the backup of the one you cancelled and start again.

    Mine finally finished after about 22hrs. I'm on a brand new PC so when I clicked Sync apps it tells me it has to delete everything and copy them from this itunes library, so I think I might lose my game saves and ifiles programs, pictures, and songs, I hate this. anyway, before it can sync the apps, its gone into another backup. It's almost an hour now and its about 15% done.

    I can't imagine Apple thinks this is okay. Why can't they just blast a 32GB image from the iphone over to the PC? It'd take no time at all!
  • diesel vdub Level 7 (21,995 points)
    iTunes does NOT back up a full image of your device. That is just silly... if it did, you would need sufficient free space on your computers hard drive to for a copy of the entire iPhone.

    iTunes is only backing up your settings essentially.

    It is ridiculous that your backup took 22hrs and that you let it run for that long.

    You obviously have a program with corrupted data or some issue going on.
    Others have provided options for troubleshooting the issue here, try taking their advice.

    It is possible that you may need to resort to restoring your iPhone and setting up as new, then reinstalling your apps.
  • Murray Ellis II Level 1 (0 points)
    Is this common for devices that are not computers to just go corrupt?? I've never had a computer do this, or another smart phone have trouble backing stuff up, yet there is a large community of this happening on iphone.

    A device should have failsafes built in that should be able to alert the user of an issue like this. You never know when you start a backup if you have something corrupt and you might only give up 1hr in or just go to sleep and check on it the next day. Never should a user have to delete everything and start over unless you're using Windows with their terrible registry system.
  • RHinVA Level 1 (0 points)
    Well, diesel, please riddle me this: if my problem is/was a corrupt file, then why does the backup & sync go lightening fast on one machine and take an eternity on another? It wouldn't be corrupt when connected to one machine, and then suddenly not corrupt when connected to another. At least, I don't see how this could be the case.

    Me thinks something is rotten in the Apple sync world.
  • Lawrence Finch Level 8 (35,018 points)
    You seem to want to argue rather than fix it, but if you truly do want to fix it go into iTunes preferences and delete your old backups, then back up again.
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