Syncing iPhone taking FOREVER…not anymore!

firmware 2.0 One thing that has been driving me crazy since upgrading to firmware 2.0 is that it takes forever to sync my iPhone…like FOREVER. Well, zerologic published an article describing how to turn off the back-up process using your Mac. This is only an option for those of you who do not keep a lot of important info on your iPhone because it means that you will no longer have a back-up of anything on your iPhone. You would still be able to sync your iPhone with information from your computer, like a contact’s list or calendar. However, anything you have exclusively on your iPhone would not be backed-up.

Make sure you read all the info below before proceeding!

I found a way (using the strings command in the terminal) to disable the backup function. This means that YOUR PHONE IS NOT GOING TO GET BACKED UP. Let me repeat that. If you do what I list below, YOUR PHONE WILL NOT GET BACKED UP.

This command will change a hidden setting in the iTunes preferences that will force it to skip the backup process.

1. – Quit iTunes.
2. – Open
3. – Copy and paste this in, then hit return:
defaults write DeviceBackupsDisabled -bool true

4. – Open iTunes
5. – Plug in your iPhone (2.0 or 3G) and sync.

It will take a few seconds, assuming you don’t have a ton of music or podcasts.

Changing the ‘true’ in step 3 to ‘false’ will re-enable the backup feature.

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  1. hi doug and brooke.

    which are you pertaining about here? the term-vt100 app from big boss? or some other i’m confused.

    and where should we do this? on the computer itself or on the iphone?

  2. you could always just press the “x” when you don’t want to back up. It will still go through the sync process. Then you still have the option of backing up when you need to.

    • Yeah, why wouldnt you just hit the “X” on the load bar?Goes right into syncing after that. And you don’t need a Mac for that .

  3. for macs there is a simpler way.. just go to and there is a download. it is a simple application, with a single button that says ‘enable backup’ or ‘disable backup’ depending on its status.

  4. what about windows users. . .

    • You can click on the “X” when it starts backing up…

    • @Numberzz: no, infact that can corrupt a backup if u interrupt it midway.
      There has to be a similar method for Windows Users too.
      But what does it mean by no backup will be taken of the iphone?
      Is that only for apps from appstore installed directly on the iphone?
      Or does that even include the regular backups like contacts, recents, sms, emails and calendar?

  5. galadriann says

    Well, for windows … at least I tried same command … at first I thought it worked too …. no luck unfortunately… only way is to cancel the backup when it starts and it finishes the sync ,,,, if anyone ever founds a solution … maybe in FW2.1 ??

  6. dimitrios tsolakis says

    nice but what about for window users

  7. dimitrios tsolakis says

    the trick for windows is never make backup treat your phone as new always straight after the pawning process and be very very selective on your applications when you sync in itunes never select all applications like me i have 30 applications i used to select all and run the backup with all these apps from 8oclock in the morning and the sync used to finish 1oclock in the afternoon thats 5 hours in total and waste of electricity every month.!!!

  8. dimitrios tsolakis says

    you dont loose your contacts thats the good thing because now in settings we have option to import contacts but we lose game saves but if we start games all time from beginning we recall the tricks and we can replay it easily and bring it to that stage we had it previously backuped

  9. dimitrios tsolakis says

    the nice thing about app store is you can always download prepurchased items many times without paying again you just get a dialogue you accept and it downloads automatic so i dont really have to sync my apps unless i get new ones and i want a record on my computer

  10. For windows-user:

  11. Their is a much easier way than that which also i think may work on a p.c. This is how; when it says backing up in the status bar on the top of itunes (Also the same thing that says what music ur playing) click the little “x” button on the right hand side and click sync again or i think it will continue backing up. i have done this a least 15 times no problem.

  12. I did have this abnormally long sync problem initially. I didn’t know what causes it, but I’m thinking that I could live with it, until, I went to the iTunes preferences, and removed all my iPhone’s previous backups (there’s an iteration for every FW version that I use – 1.1.2, 1.1.3, 1.1.4, etc).

    Right after I did that, I plugged my phone into the computer, and voila! the Sync now is just as normal as during the 1.1.4 days!