iTunes Backup was Corrupt or Not Compatible

iTunes Could Not Backup/Restore the iPhone iPad iPod
iTunes Backup was Corrupt or Not Compatible

[Last Updated on June. 21, 2017]

For most iOS users, iTunes is the only way to back up or restore iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, and most of time it works well. However, when backing up or restoring your iDevice with iTunes, accidents will happen, some unexpected iTunes errors may pop up, like:

  • iTunes could not restore the iPhone/iPad/iPod because the backup was corrupt or not compatible with the iPhone that is being restored.
  • iTunes could not backup the iPhone (or iPad, iPod touch) because the backup was corrupt or not compatible with the iPhone (or iPad, iPod touch).
  • This iPhone/iPad/iPod cloud not be updated. This device isn’t eligible for the request build.
  • iTunes could not restore the iPhone/iPad/iPod because not enough free space available on the iPhone.
  • iTunes could not back up the iPhone because not enough free space is available on this computer.
  • Etc.

In all, many kinds of iTunes backup or restore problems you may encounter when syncing, backing up or resorting your iDevice. In this guide, we will focus on this iTunes backup corrupt or not compatible problem, and offer you several solutions to fix it. Normally, when iTunes notifies you the iTunes backup was corrupt or incompatible, it has two situations:

1. When you are backing up iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, an error message pops up and says “iTunes could not backup the iPhone (or iPad, iPod touch) because the backup was corrupt or not compatible with the iPhone (or iPad, iPod touch)”.

iTunes Could Not Backup iPhone/iPad/iPod - iTunes Backup Was Corrupt or Not Compatible

iTunes Could Not Backup iPhone/iPad/iPod - iTunes Backup Was Corrupt or Not Compatible

2. When you are restoring your iDevice with iTunes, an error message pops up and says “iTunes could not restore the iPhone (or iPad, iPod touch) because the backup was corrupt or not compatible with the iPhone(or iPad, iPod touch) that is being restored”.

iTunes Could Not Restore iPhone/iPad/iPod - iTunes Backup Was Corrupt or Not Compatible

iTunes Could Not Restore iPhone/iPad/iPod - iTunes Backup Was Corrupt or Not Compatible

No matter which situation you are stuck on, in this guide we will offer you several solutions to fix it. Next, we will talk about them one by one in detail, including what make them happen, and how to fix them.

Situation 1: iTunes Backup Corrupt or Incompatible – iTunes Can’t Back Up iDevice

In this part, we will show you how to fix iTunes backup corrupt or not compatible when backing up iPhone iPad iPod. Before offering you quick fixes, we will analyze what makes it happen.

What Makes It Happen: iTunes Backup was Corrupt or Not Compatible When backing Up iDevice

When you are creating backup of iPhone iPad or iPod with iTunes, this error message - “iTunes could not back up this iPhone (iPad or iPod touch), because the backup was corrupt or not compatible with the iPhone (iPad or iPod touch)” pops up, what makes it happen?

Normally, this is because there is a problem with the previous backup of your iDevice, and iTunes typically just updates the backups of making an entirely new backup. To fix this iTunes could not back up iPhone/iPad/iPod, we will show you several possible solutions below.

How to Fix: iTunes Backup was Corrupt or Not Compatible When backing Up iDevice

To fix this iTunes backup problem - iTunes could not backup the iPhone (iPad or iPod touch) because the backup was corrupt or not compatible with the iPhone, normally you have two solutions. One is just like the error message shows “ Delete this backup for this iPhone (iPad or iPod touch), and try again”, and the other one is backing up your iPhone/iPad/iPod touch with an iTunes alternative. We will discuss both of them in detail below.

Solution 1: Delete Corrupt or Incompatible iTunes Backup and Back Up Again

Before backing up your iPhone iPad iPod touch with iTunes again, you need to deleted corrupt or incompatible backup firstly. Here are 3 methods you can apply to delete corrupt or incompatible iTunes backup, as followed:

Method 1:

Delete Corrupt or Incompatible iTunes Backup via iTunes Interface

You know, any wrong operation may lead to new iTunes backup or restore problems, if you want to avoid any wrong operation and correctly delete corrupt or incompatible backup, please move to Method 3. Before deleting corrupt or incompatible backup, if you want to check what backed up in this corrupt or incompatible backup, and extract the useful files to computer or directly back to iDevice, you can click here to view backup files and extract what you like.

Step 1: Launch iTunes on your computer (PC or Mac).

Step 2: Click iTunes at upper left corner of your Mac (on PC: you need to click Edit on the top left corner of your iTunes interface) > click Preferences.

Step 3: Select Devices > find your device in the backup listing > Find and select the incompatible or corrupt backup > Click Delete Backup button > Confirm it and click Delete button.

Fix iTunes Corrupt or Not Compatible – Delete Corrupt or Compatible Backup

Fix iTunes Corrupt or Not Compatible – Delete Corrupt or Compatible Backup

 If you found it is difficult to delete the corrupt or incompatible backup in the iTunes device list with method 1, you can correctly locate corrupt or incompatible iTunes backup, and then delete it manually by moving to Method 3.

Method 2:

Deleting Corrupt or Incompatible iTunes Backup By Locating It

Except deleting incompatible or corrupt backup with iTunes interface, you also can delete it by locating it. To locate it, you must know where iTunes backups store on computer firstly. According to this iMobie post shows, the iTunes backup files are stored:

  • On Windows XP: \Documents and Settings\(username)\Application Data\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup\
  • On Windows Vista, 7, or 8: \Users\(username)\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup\
  • On Mac: ~/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup/

Now we have known where iTunes backups store on your computer, then we will show you the steps to delete the incompatible or corrupt iTunes backup. And this method will show you how to delete all the backups of this device (instead of the only corrupt or incompatible backup), if you do want to delete this one, please move to Method 3.

Step 1: According to the storing path mentioned above, open the backup folder.

For Windows users, you need to open the folder one by one.

For Mac users, they need to Right-click Finder from dock, then select Go to Folder, and then input: ~/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup/. At last, click OK to open this folder.

Step 2: You will enter the Backup folder with one or more folders named by your devices' unique identifiers.

Step 3: Normally, most of us don’t know what the exactly identifiers of our device are. To help you delete the right backup, you can click the Serial Number of your iDevice in iTunes when your iDevice is connected to iTunes, and then the Serial Number filed will switch to your device identifiers.

Fix iTunes Corrupt or Not Compatible – Delete Corrupt or Compatible Backup

Fix iTunes Corrupt or Not Compatible – Delete Corrupt or Compatible Backup

Step 4: Then delete all folders match the identifier in the iTunes backup folder from your computer.

Method 3:

Correctly Locate Corrupt or Incompatible Backup And Delete It

If you just want to delete the corrupt or incompatible backup instead of all the backups of this device, you can make it with PhoneRescue - iPhone iPad data recovery tool, which also can be used as an iTunes backup extractor to restore and extract iOS content from iTunes backup, even the iTunes backup is corrupt or not compatible. When extracting data and files from iTunes backup, it scans your computer firstly and lists all the iTunes backups, and marks the corrupt or incompatible backup with an exclamation point, so that you can easily find it out and locate it on your computer.

For correctly locate corrupt or incompatible backup on computer, you just need to do the following steps:

Step 1: Free download PhoneRescue on your computer, install and run it on your computer.

Free Download Free Download

Step 2: On Homepage of PhoneRescue, select Recover from iTunes Backup, and then click Right Arrow button.

Correctly Locate Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup with PhoneRescue – Step 2

Correctly Locate Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup with PhoneRescue – Step 2

Step 3: PhoneRescue will scan your computer and list you all the iTunes backups. And the corrupt or incompatible backups will be marked with exclamation point, just like the following screenshot shows. Select the corrupt or incompatible backups you want to delete, click the Search icon to directly open this backup’s folder on your computer, then delete all of them. If you are not sure whether this backup contains important files, you can view backup files firslty and extract what you like from it before performing deleting. Click here to view and extract iTunes backup files >

Correctly Locate Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup with PhoneRescue – Step 3

Correctly Locate Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup with PhoneRescue – Step 3

Solution 2: Back Up iPhone/iPad/iPod with An iTunes Alternative

After trying all methods listed above, if you still fail to fix this iTunes backup corrupt or incompatible problem, you can try to back up your iDevice with an alternative to iTunes – AnyTrans, as a wonderful iOS content manager tool, which allows you to 1-click back up your iPhone/iPad to computer, and also allows you to selectively back up what you like to computer. In detail, it is fitted with the highlight features as followed:

1. Supports selectively transferring 20+ types of iOS data to computer as backup and you can view them any time you need, including Photos, Music, Videos, Ringtones, Contacts, Messages, Notes, Calendar, Voice Memos, etc.

2. Supports 1-click backing up iPhone to computer. All the media files can be backed up to computer, like Music, Ringtones, Videos, Voice Memos, Playlists, Photos, Books, etc. Click here to 1-click back up iPhone iPad >

3. Also allow you to back up Music, Playlists, Voice Memos, Ringtones and other media files to iTunes library. Learn More >

4. You can transfer the above-mentioned data back to your iPhone or iPad from computer or iTunes as you like, and won’t ease any existing data on iDevice. Learn More >

5. Except backing up iDevice content, AnyTrans also can be used as an iTunes backup extractor to extract what you like from iTunes backup. Learn More >

Now download AnyTrans on your computer, and then back up your iPhone iPad iPod touch on your computer.

AnyTrans Overview:

iAnyTrans Overview

iAnyTrans Overview

Free Download Free Download

After downloading AnyTrans on your computer, here are some tutorials about backup iPhone iPad you may need:

How to Transfer Contacts from iPhone to Computer for Backup >

How to Transfer Photos from iPhone to Computer >

How to Transfer Music from iPhone to Computer >

How to Transfer Text Messages from iPhone to Computer >

Situation 2: iTunes Backup Corrupt or Incompatible – iTunes Can’t Restore iDevice

If you are stuck on this iTunes backup corrupt or incompatible problem when restoring iDeivce, in this part we will show what makes it happen and how to fix it. Let’s get it started!

What Makes It Happen: iTunes Backup was Corrupt or Not Compatible When Restoring iDevice

iTunes could not restore your iPhone/iPad/iPod and remind you “This iTunes backup was corrupt or not compatible”, two reasons make this happen.

When you are creating backup with iTunes, it may happen some errors but didn't give you any message. So you thought you have made a backup with iTunes successfully, however, when trying to restore your device with it, only to find you have a corrupt backup.

It also happens when you try to restore your iPhone/iPad/iPod touch with an incompatible backup. This is because of different iOS versions. For example, if you upgraded your iPhone 6s to iOS 11 beta, and make a backup with iTunes, and then you downgrade it to iOS 10.3.2, without doubt you can’t restore your iPhone with the iOS 11 backup, because this is not compatible with your iPhone.

Now we have known why iPhone backup corrupt or not compatible when restoring iDevice with iTunes, next we will offer you several solutions to fix it.

How to Fix: iTunes Backup was Corrupt or Not Compatible When Restoring iDevice

Just like fix iTunes could not back up iPhone/iPad/iPod because of corrupt or incompatible backup, there are two solutions for you. One is deleting corrupt or incompatible backup, and the other one is restoring iDevice with this corrupt or incompatible backup.

Although both of the two solutions can fix this iTunes could not restore iPhone iPad problem, there is something important you need to know, once you choose to delete this corrupt or incompatible backup you are restoring, this means all the content and files in this iTunes backup will be deleted at the same time. Therefore, we strongly suggest that you should apply the second solution – restore iPhone iPad iPod with this corrupt or incompatible backup. Next we will show you how to restore iDevice with a corrupt or not compatible iTunes backup.

When restoring this corrupt or incompatible backup with iTunes, it pops up the error message “iTunes could not restore the iPhone (or iPad, iPod touch) because the backup was corrupt or not compatible”, without doubt you can’t restore it with iTunes. Here we will recommend you a third-party tool – PhoneRescue, which allows you to restore your iDevice with this corrupt or incompatible backup. And this “restore” is not same as the traditional restore, you can view iTunes backup files, select and extract what you like from iTunes backup to your iPhone iPad iPod touch directly. The restore steps are followed:

Step 1: Free download PhoneRescue on your computer, install and run it.

Free Download Free Download

Step 2: On homepage of PhoneRescue, select Recover from iTunes Backup, and then click Right Arrow button.

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 2

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 2

Step 3: PhoneRescue will scan your computer and list all the iTunes backup stores on your computer. And the corrupt or incompatible backup will be marked with exclamation point. Select the backup you want to restore with your iDevice, and then click right arrow button.

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 3

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 3

Step 4: Select the files you want to extract from iTunes backup, and then click OK button.

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 4

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 4

Step 5: Preview the files in iTunes backup, and select the categories or items you want to extract to your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch by clicking To Device button (Note: Please connect your iPhone iPad to computer before clicking To Device button). In this guide we take message as an example, you can extract all the supported files from corrupt or incompatible iTunes backup. And you also can extract the files directly to computer by clicking To Computer button.

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 5

Fix Corrupt or Not Compatible iTunes Backup: Restore iPhone iPad with PhoneRescue– Step 5

We have talked about how to fix iTunes backup corrupt or not compatible problem above, no matter you are stuck on this problem when backing up iPhone/iPad or restoring iDevice, you must have learned how to fix it.

Except stuck on the problem of iTunes backup is corrupt or not compatible, when backing up or restoring your iDevice, you may be failed due to other reasons, like the firmware files is not compatible, having not enough space on iDevice, the device is not eligible for the requested build . Absolutely, you may also meet many kinds of other problems when backing up your iPhone iPad to computer with iTunes, like iTunes can't recognize your device, having not enough space on computer, iTunes backup can't be saved on computer, etc. If you meet any problem mentioned above, check this iMobie guide to fix it with ease. By the way, if you have other solutions, be free to tell us and other iDevices users by leaving a comment.

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