8 Replies Latest reply: Jul 11, 2013 7:10 AM by Trey
Trey Level 5 Level 5 (4,225 points)

Ok, so I had to restore my iPhone 4 to factory settings today because things were going a little wonky. I was reticent to do it, though, as I didn't want to lose my text messages, so I did a little experimenting with moving the file "3d0d7e5fb2ce288813306e4d4636395e047a3d28" between backup folders on my previous system. It worked quite well; I was able to move the file of texts from my most recent backup to other backups from months ago and still have my texts from yesterday and stuff.


So this morning, my procedure was this:


1.) Backup iPhone
2.) Restore iPhone to factory settings

3.) Make another backup of the iPhone

4.) Replace the file 3d0d7e5fb2ce288813306e4d4636395e047a3d28 in the new backup with the copy from step 1

5.) Restore from the latest backup.


Should work, right? But it didn't, and I can't figure out why. It says that the backup is incompatable with the iPhone whenever I try to restore it from the most recent modified backup.


Anyone have experience with this?

  • ChrisJ4203 Level 8 Level 8 (41,350 points)

    If you updated the software in iOS, it may be the older file is from the older iOS and the new file is the newer iOS. If that is the case, then you cannot use a backup from two different OS. Also, as you may have found out, making alterations to the backup files can cause issues when you try and use them again.

  • Trey Level 5 Level 5 (4,225 points)

    5.0.1 in both cases. And I don't really care about the backup itself. As I said, I made it with the express purpose of injecting the text messages file into; once I've got that done, I could delete the backup for all I care.


    Message was edited by: Trey

  • ChrisJ4203 Level 8 Level 8 (41,350 points)

    I have read of other users moving files in backup, as well as using 3rd-party software to extract information from backup files. However you may want to look at other forum sites for individuals that have moved SMS from one backup to another. I'm not so sure how successful this would be, since I believe iTunes codes the files as you noticed and it is possible if the numbers are out of sync, they would not work. Only guessing on some of this, since I have never tried it.

  • Trey Level 5 Level 5 (4,225 points)

    Ugh, I didn't mean to mark that message "Correct." There's no way to unmark it?


    The file name is identical from one backup to another. I can't really see anything other than the modification date that would clue iTunes in to the fact that it's older. And to test that, I went in and made a minor change to the file so that it would have a more recent modified date. no dice.

  • Demo Level 10 Level 10 (85,800 points)

    I don't know if you have ever checked this out, but it just might work for you. I have never used it, but I've read about it and recommended it to another user who was actually able to extract the passcode to unlock his iPad without having to restore the device.

    iPhone Extractor

  • Trey Level 5 Level 5 (4,225 points)

    Thanks Demo, that software actually uses the files in the backup to create .csv and other assorted files from the data in the backups. I was able to do that this morning, but what I'd really like is to have them back in their original format on the phone. Poking around there, I did find a couple of new avenues to try out, but they're basically just other ways to do exactly what I described above.


    I've just tried using a text editor to copy and paste the text from file to file and had the same error... this is making me batty. It can't be this hard.

  • edpurves Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Did you have any luck Trey?


    I've been trying to do the same as my iPhone had an internal conflict that won't transfer and sync new contacts saved from messages so was advised to start afresh but wanted to keep my 3 years of messages!


    It did the restore but didn't bring the texts across, even though that file was copied to the latest backup folder.


    Cheers, Ed

  • Trey Level 5 Level 5 (4,225 points)

    I did not have any luck. In the end, I was able to get the text message thread saved as a text document. This is a baffling oversight by Apple.