iOS data recovery FAQ

Updated

We've rounded up our tips on data recovery for your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch below.

Why does Apple make it difficult to reset / disable this passcode -- why can't it be done via iCloud?

We believe it is to cater for users who don't set up an iCloud Family Sharing unit with their kids, but instead give them their own iPhone with their own iCloud account. Short of separately being able to register a parent on TouchID or FaceID, a secondary code is needed, as the child would have full access to their own iCloud settings.

It's also helpful to use a passcode rather than an iCloud account where these restrictions are applied en masse via MDM across many devices where there isn't a parent as such, such as on a school or company's devices. It's not just for restricting access for children using the device.

When the family are tied together in an iCloud Family share it would be possible. However, users would always need the option of some sort of passcode override for times when it matters: like being on a long journey with the family where there's no Internet. Most of the world doesn't have Wi-Fi during flights, for instance, so without a code it wouldn't be possible to change Family Sharing settings.

How can I view iMessage on a Windows PC?

The easiest way to get iMessages on Windows is by following the instructions above: iPhone Backup Extractor gives you a fully-featured iMessage viewer for Windows. It'll let you see attachments, diagrams and messages on your Windows PC, just like you would on your iPhone.

How can I get iMessages on Mac?

The "Messages" app on newer Macs integrates with the iCloud to give you access to iMessages and texts on your desktop. Setup is easy:

  1. Make sure you're signed into the same iCloud account on the Mac as on the iPhone

  2. On your iPhone, go into SettingsMessagesText Message Forwarding, and you'll see a list of the iMessage-compatible devices associated with your iCloud account.

  3. Enable or disable the devices you'd like to use text message forwarding on; you'll be able to send and receive texts on any of these iPads or Macs

Is it possible to get iMessages on Android?

There's no simple iMessage client available on Android at this point; Apple take care to protect the iMessage experience. However, we have a guide to help you migrate iMessages to Android. Reach out if you get stuck!

How can I access my WhatsApp `ChatStorage.sqlite` file?

You can access your ChatStorage.sqlite file using "Expert mode" as described in the steps above, and iPhone Backup Extractor enables you to get that file both from iTunes and iCloud backups. You can use this when migrating your data to Android. We publish a guide to getting ChatStorage here.

How can I restore WhatsApp messages to a different phone?

We've got a neat guide on how to selectively restore WhatsApp messages to an iPhone or Android here.

Is it possible to recover lost or deleted photos from my iPhone or iCloud?

Yes: we've got a full guide to recovering lost or deleted photos. Check it out!

My iPhone won't turn on and all my data is lost, how can I recover iOS data?

If you have an iTunes backup or use iCloud, you'll be able to get data back using either this guide or our guide for iCloud. Worst case, email us and we'll help you.

How can we help?

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