EaseUS MobiMover

All-in-One iOS Content Manager & Free Video/Audio Downloader

  • An iOS data transfer tool to transfer files to or from iPhone/iPad
  • An iPhone manager to manage files on iPhone/iPad from a computer
  • A free video downloader to download online videos to a computer or iPhone/iPad

How to Back Up iPhone to External Hard Drive

Myra updated on Dec 23, 2020 to iPhone Data Transfer | How-to Articles

Is It Possible to Back Up iPhone to External Hard Drive

Many of you want to back up iPhone to external hard drive to save more space on your computer or cloud storage. But is it possible to back up iPhone to external drive? The answer is both "Yes" and "No."

As you may know, if you use iTunes or Finder to back up an iPhone, the iPhone backup location is fixed and what you can do is to move the iPhone backup to the external drive after the backup is made. Thus, if you are looking to back up an iPhone to an external hard drive with iTunes or Finder, it's not workable.

Luckily, with the help of some third-party tools, you are able to change the iPhone backup location according to your need and thus you can back up iPhone to external hard drive directly. 

Therefore, whether you can back up iPhone to external drive depends on the tool you choose. Read on to check how to back up iPhone directly to external hard drive and how to move iPhone backup to external hard drive.

Part 1. How to Back Up iPhone to External Hard Drive Directly

Supports: PC

As mentioned, with the help of third-party iPhone transfer software like EaseUS MobiMover, you will be able to customize the iPhone backup location and save the backup to the external drive directly.

In addition to being an iPhone backup tool, EaseUS MobiMover also works well as an iOS data transfer tool and video downloader that enable you to:

  • Transfer files to or from your iPhone, iPad, and iPad
  • Back up and restore WhatsApp data
  • Download videos from YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and more to computer and iDevice via URL

To back up iPhone to external hard drive:

Step 1. Connect your iPhone to your PC with a USB cable and go to "Backup Manager" > "Back up" in EaseUS MobiMover.

how to back up iPhone without iTunes - step 1

Step 2. Check the content you need to backup and tap "Select" to change the iPhone backup location to the external hard drive. Then click "One-Click Backup".

how to back up iPhone without iTunes - step 2

Step 3. Wait for the backup to complete. If you need to restore an iPhone from the backup in the future, go to "Backup Manager" > "Restore" to restore the backup from the external hard drive to your device.

how to back up iPhone without iTunes - step 3

Part 2. How to Move iPhone Backup to External Hard Drive

Supports: PC and Mac

Although you can move the iPhone backup file you made with iTunes or Finder to an external hard drive, you are not recommended to do so. That's because you will need to move the backup back to the default folder when you need to restore a device from the backup, or it won't work.

Besides, if you have to move an iPhone backup, you should not edit, rename, or extract items from it. These actions may result in file corruption and you won't be able to restore a device from the backup.

Given that, be careful with your operations while moving iPhone backup to external hard drive.

Option 1. Move iPhone Backup to External Hard Drive on Mac

On macOS Catalina and later:

Step 1. Open Finder and click the device icon.

Step 2. Under "General", click "Manage Backups" to check the list of your backups.

Step 3. Right-click the backup you want to move and choose "Show in Finder".

Step 4. Copy the backup folder to the external hard drive.

On macOS Mojave and earlier:

Step 1. Launch iTunes and click the device icon.

Step 2. Go to "Preferences" > "Devices".

Step 3. Right-click the backup you need to move and select "Show in Finder".

Step 4. Copy the backup to your external hard drive.

Move iPhone backup to external hard drive on Mac

Option 2. Save iPhone Backup to External Hard Drive on PC

Take Windows 10 as an example.

Step 1. Click the Search bar and enter %appdata%.

Step 2. Go to "Apple"/"Apple Computer" > "MobileSync" > "Backup" and you will find your iPhone backup here.

Step 3. Move your iPhone backup to the external hard drive.

Move iPhone backup to external hard drive on PC

You can also go to \Users\(username)\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup\ to access your iPhone backups on Windows 10, 8, or 7.

Conclusion

To sum up, the best solution for you to back up iPhone directly to external hard drive is to use a third-party tool like EaseUS MobiMover. With iTunes or Finder, this is no solution to save iPhone backup to an external drive straightforwardly unless you relocate it manually, which is not recommended by Apple.

If you decide to move the iPhone backup, be careful with your operations so that you won't ruin the file.