By Nick / Last Updated October 21, 2020

Anyone could tell me how to backup iPhone to external hard drive on Windows PC?

My iPhone needs to be backed up, and I prefer to save the backup files to my Seagate external hard drive. I have an iPhone X and a PC running Windows 10. Thanks for any help.

- Question from iPhone User

iTunes Logo

iPhone brings convenience and happiness to us both in business and daily life. When the storage is going to be used up or there is important data on it, you need to backup iPhone to safely release iPhone storage and never lose needed iPhone data.

To give double insurance to your iPhone data you can move iPhone backup to external hard drive. In addition, every time iTunes creates an iPhone backup, a folder of over 7GB will be save to C drive so it is not a good long-term plan for backing up iPhone. To avoid your C drive being occupied, you can change iTunes backup location to external hard drive.

How to backup iPhone directly to external hard drive on Windows 10/8/7?

AOMEI MBackupper is a free professional iPhone backup software. It requires just simple steps to backup photos, videos, music, messages, and contacts to external hard drive on Windows 7/8/10.

  • Free Software: You can export unlimited files from iPhone to external drive with AOMEI MBackupper.

  • Select Data: You can preview iPhone data and select the needed ones to transfer.

  • External Drive: AOMEI MBackupper supports all the popular external drives.

  • Widely Compatible: AOMEI MBackupper supports all the iOS devices including iPhone 11/11 Pro/SE 2020.

Download AOMEI MBackupper to computer, plug your external hard drive into computer, connect iPhone to computer with USB cable, and prepare to backup iPhone to external hard drive on your Windows computer.

Step 1. Select Custom Backup to backup the whole 5 types of iPhone data.

Custom Backup iPhone

Step 2. Click an icon to preview iPhone data. Select what you need and click OK.

Select iPhone Data

Step 3. Click the path in the lower-left corner to change iPhone backup location to external hard drive and then click Start Backup to copy everything you have selected to external drive.

Change Path


  • This backup would be easily used on another Windows computer.

  • Click the eye icon to view iPhone backup in AOMEI MBackupper.

  • Click the pin icon to view the iPhone backup files in File Explorer.

Restore to Device

How to change iTunes backup location to external hard drive?

iTunes is a strict software. You can just make full backup of iPhone (some local data in app and all the settings) and you can’t view what’s inside of it, but you can have an overview of what iTunes backup includes.

Changing iTunes backup location is a little complicated. There are no options in iTunes to do that so you can only use Windows CMD to force iTunes to save iPhone backup to another partition. If you just need the pictures, it will be very easy to backup iPhone photos to external hard drive.

Step 1. Download iTunes. Plug external hard drive to computer.

Step 2. Go to C:\Users\[PC name]\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\ MobileSync. Cut the whole file of MobileSync to your external drive.

Step 3. Press Win + R and input “cmd” in the box.

Step 4. Enter mklink /J “C:\Users\[PC name]\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup” “E:\MobileSync” and press Enter. You should be aware whether G is the drive letter of your external drive, or you need to modify the command. If it runs successful, go to the next step.

CMD Change iTunes Backup Location

If you don’t see AppData, it is hidden. You should navigate to View at the top of the toolbar in Windows Explorer and check Hidden items.

Step 5. Launch iTunes and connect your iPhone to computer. Remember to tap Trust This iPhone to allow this computer to scan it.

Step 6. Click the phone-shape icon in the upper left corner > Summary > Back Up Now. It could take several minutes to complete the task.

After the task is finished, you need to check whether your iPhone backup has been saved to external hard drive. In fact, you could find the iPhone backup both in C:\Users\[PC name]\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\ MobileSync and your external destination, but the it is actually stored in your external hard drive and doesn’t use the space of C Drive.


Storage shortage on computer might drive you to backup iPhone external hard drive on Windows and saving the backup files to external drive makes them safer and easy to use.

AOMEI MBackupper is the most convenient software to backup iPhone to external hard drive on Windows PC. It supports all the popular external hard drive and export what you want by one click. You can also change iTunes backup location but it is a little complicated.

Is this guide helpful? You could share it to help more people.