How To Backup iPad To Mac Without iTunes Title Image

“I’ve just upgraded my MacBook. And now I can’t find iTunes anywhere in my new MacOs. I regularly backup my iPad to my Mac. So what now? How do I backup my iPad to my Mac without iTunes?”

An iPad user says:

So how to you backup iPad to Mac and avoid the headache of missing iTunes?

Apple got rid of iTunes with MacOS Catalina. iTunes had got old and bloated. So Apple split up its different features into separate apps.

If you’ve upgraded from a Mac computer that couldn’t run Catalina. Then a missing iTunes has likely come as a shock. Especially if you like to keep your backups local in iTunes. And don’t want an iCloud backup.

You still can. Read on for the full info on how.

How To Backup iPad To Mac Without iTunes.

1. Connect iPad to Your Mac with a USB cable.

2. Open a Finder Window. Click on your iPad in Locations.

3. Open your iPad with your Passcode or Touch id. Click Trust on your Mac.

4. Click General Tab on Mac. Scroll Down to Backups.

5. Check mark ‘Backup all the data on your iPad to this Mac’.

6. Check mark ‘Encrypt local backup’ if backing up sensitive personal data.

7. Click ‘Back Up Now’ button.

8. When done. Eject Your iPad.

How Can I Backup iPad To Mac Without iTunes?

1. With Your iPad’s USB Cable. Plug Into Your Mac.

Plug your device into a USB port on your Mac.

Older iPads with Lightning ports will need a USB type A to USB C adaptor. To plug into new Mac’s with USB C ports.

If you’ve a new iPad Pro or Air then you’ve a USB C port on it. And can use the cable that came with your iPad or newer Mac to plug in.

2. Start Up Or Open A Finder Window.

You can use an existing Finder window you have open on your Mac. Or open a new one from your Mac’s Dock.

Finder In Dock
Finder In Dock

In that Finder window look down the sidebar till you get to the Locations heading. You’ll see the name you gave your iPad there.

Click on it.

IPad Listed In Finder Locations

3. Next Open Your iPad With Your Passcode.

Or you can use Touch id on your iPad.  And if this is the first time you’re using the Finder app to connect to your iPad. Your Mac puts up a message in the finder window. It’ll ask you if you trust this device.

You click the trust button on your Mac. And soon after. If this is the first time you’re connecting your iPad you’ll see a message on there as well. Your iPad’s iOS asks you – Do you trust this Mac? Tap the trust button on your iPad.

And your Finder window will switch to the options for your iPad.

4. Check the General Tab is Clicked.

When you plan to do an iPad backup you’ll need the General tab in your finder window. The picture below shows you where to click.  It’s the first in a line of Finder app options.

Backup iPad Finder Window

You’ll find plenty of useful information on this screen. At the top are the vital statistics of your iPad. How much space it has and how much you’ve used. The iOS software version your iPad is running. And if there’s a new iOS version for your iPad.

You can click a button to check for the iOS updates for your device.

Scroll on down the screen to the section headed ‘Backups’.

5. Put A Mark In the ‘Backup all the data on your iPad to this Mac’ Box.

That box is crucial. It tells your Mac that the iPad backup you want is to this Mac.

6. What To Do If You’re Backing Up Sensitive iPad Data.

If your iOS data is sensitive and personal.  And Apple defines that as data from apps on your iOS device that track your fitness. Heart rate, financial information, passwords and all information like that.

If you want that data backed up to your Mac then you’ll need an encrypted backup. Put a check in the box ‘Encrypt local backup’.  And then your Mac prompts you to put in a password.

Scroll down the screen a little further.

7. Now You’re Ready To Backup. Click the Backup Now Button.

iPad Finder Backup Up Now Button

You’re ready to backup iPad. Click on the Backup Now button. And your Mac starts your backup. You’ll see the progress of the backup of your device along the bottom of your finder window.

Ipad To MacBook Backup

When your backup’s finished, you’ll see the bar along the bottom of Finder window change to a colored bar.

And the date of your last backup to your Mac just above the Manage backups button.

8. You’ve Done Your iPad’s Backup. One Last Thing.

Eject your iPad when you’re finished. You’ve backed up to your Mac without the iTunes app. And so no iTunes backup or iCloud backup.

Eject i Pad After Backup To Your Mac
Eject Your iPad After Your Backup To Your Mac

Use the Eject symbol by your iPad’s name. And then you can unplug your iPad.

Can You Backup Your iPhone Without iTunes Too?

Your iPad isn’t the only iOS device you can use a Finder window for.  You now use Finder for a local backup of your iPhone or iPod Touch. You walk through the same steps to connect your device and do your backup.

Your Mac creates a backup folder for each device. And you can restore iPhone from its iPhone backup. Or your iPad from its backup. The button to do that is right under the Software heading in the Finder window.

But understand that each time you backup. Your device backup overwrites the last backup file.

So, it’s best to backup your Mac to an external drive between each iOS device backup.

That way you’ll save your last iPhone iPad device backup. And then have more options on backups to restore from. If you ever need to restore.

What Can I Transfer To And From My iPad or iPhone?

Alongside the General Tab. Towards the top of the Finder window you’ll find other options.  Before you start your backup it’s worth taking a look at them.

When you want to transfer files to and from your Mac to your iPad, iPhone or iPod when you backup. Then you click the sync button at the bottom of the finder screen.

Sync will synchronize your iPad data or iPhone data with your Mac computer. As well as backup iPhone or your iPad to your Mac.

You can set up options for your Music under the Music tab. Deciding if. Or if not you want to transfer your music purchases from your Mac to your iPad or iPhone. And what artists, playlists you want copied over.

Under the Photo’s tab you can pick to backup your iPad or iPhone photos to your Mac.

Finder will also backup your apps downloaded from the App Store on your iPad.

You’ve a Files tab and that allows you to backup your iPad files to your Mac.

Why Backup iPad or iPhone to Your Mac without iTunes or iCloud?

If this is the first time you’ve thought about a local backup instead of or as well as your iCloud backup. Here are a few reasons why.

You might have the space on your Mac. And want to keep your backups there. You may have fallen out of love with your iCloud backup.

And when you can’t rely on your Internet access. Then you might have found out you’ve a corrupted iCloud backup. Because your Internet dropped out while you were backing up. And you didn’t realize until you wanted to restore.

It’s always a good idea to have your Apple device’s backup in several places. Just in case one fails.

You may be fed up of paying for more iCloud storage. And want to keep things simple.

Or you just don’t want to risk your sensitive Apple device data out there in the Cloud.

In Closing

Moving from an old Mac to a new Mac can be a little tricky.

At the start of this article, you didn’t know where to start your iPad to Mac backup. Or iPad sync to your new Mac.  And now you know.

You’ve the ease of backing up your iPhone iPad to your Mac now that iTunes is gone. And you can feel safer knowing you’ve a full backup of your important iPad data. If you need to restore everything back to it.

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