How to transfer music from iPhone to a new computer

If you recently purchased a new computer, you might not have access to your old files or music for a number of reasons, including a computer that no longer works or isn’t accessible due to theft or fire. If you do have your old computer, then your first step would be to migrate your data from your old to new computer. If that’s not possible and you don’t have a backup, this tutorial can help you recover your songs. If you have your music library on your iPhone, here’s how to transfer music from iPhone to a new computer. This does not require you jailbreak your iPhone, but it will require a file explorer. We’ll provide free options for PC users and paid options for Mac users. If you are recovering your entire music library, this is a small price to pay. Let’s get started!

Transfer music from iPhone to computer

If you don’t already have it installed, you’ll want to download and install iTunes, which is available as a free download from Apple. Do not connect your iPhone until we make a change in your settings. Open iTunes > Preferences and select ‘Devices’. You’ll want to check the box that says, “Prevent iPods, iPhones, and iPads from syncing automatically”. iTunes can be very unforgiving if it finds music that is not associated with the library on your computer. Since this an entirely new computer, I’m going to assume that there is no music. By checking this box, we avoid iTunes from placing that zero content music library on your iPhone.

Mount iPhone As Drive Mac & Windows
By canceling the sync process with iTunes, it’ll enable us to access your files. To help do the trick, you’re going to need a file explorer, so that you can access your iPhone as a hard drive. There are several apps available, of the free and paid variety. PC users will want to download SharePod. Mac users have some great options, albeit paid options. Both Senuti ($18.99) and iExplorer $34.99 will get the job done. You can evaluate either before purchase. Senuti allows you a 30-day and up to 1,000 songs to evaluate. iExplorer also offers a demo option.

Launch the application of your choice by double-clicking on it and then connect your iPhone to your computer using the included USB cable.

Using iExplorer
Sure it’s paid, but this is one good looking and functioning piece of software. In the left hand column, you can navigate the file structure on your iPhone.

iExplorer

To transfer your music from your iPhone to your computer, follow these easy steps:

    1. Click on Media Library
    2. Select a song or command-click to select multiple songs
    3. Select Transfer from Device > Export Item To Select Folder
    4. Create a folder on your Mac/PC, give it an name and let iExplorer transfer them
    5. Drag the songs into iTunes

If you are moving your entire library, select ‘Auto Transfer’ to recover all items on your iPhone to iTunes.

iExplorer

Using Senuti To Transfer Music
This is a simple, iTunes reminiscent interface, making it real easy to use.

      1. Open Senuti > Preferences. Select your Default location for where you’d like your music copied.
      2. Click on Library
      3. Select a song or command-click to select multiple songs
      4. Select Transfer icon at the top left
      5. Create a folder on your Mac/PC, give it an name and let iExplorer transfer them
      6. Drag the songs into iTunes

Senuti

Got a PC, Get SharePod
It’s completely free and it will work much like Senuti and iExplorer. You’ll be able to access your music, sort it and then select ‘Copy to PC’ when you’d like to transfer. Did I mention that it’s free?

Sharepod

Using iTunes Match
If you are a current iTunes Match subscriber, this would be a great time to take advantage of your subscription. On your new computer, open up iTunes and login with your Apple ID. Navigate to Store > Turn On iTunes Match. Click on Songs. Right click (Mac users use option-click) on any of the columns (Name, Track #, etc.) and make sure iCloud Download is selected. Select all using Command-A. Right-click (option-click on Mac) and select Download. iTunes Match will download all of your music back to iTunes.

iCloud download

The best option when getting a new Mac or PC is to migrate your data from old to new, but this isn’t always possible. While a good backup plan is always a good idea, sometimes folks don’t think about it until it’s too late. Follow the above guides to transfer music from your iPhone to your new PC or Mac. Once your recover your music, it’s a good time to think about one of the many options available to you for backing up your data. These include iCloud, CrashPlan, Carbonite or local backups using Time Machine and others.

Written By

Christopher Meinck is the Founder and Editorial Director at everythingiCafe. You can also find him co-hosting on everythingiCafe :the show. His smartphone obsession started with the Handspring Treo 180. While the phones have changed, the obsession continues. You can find him on Google+ and Twitter.

Comments

  1. Brucy says

    THANK YOU SO MUCH. I got a new computer and i lost all my songs on my laptop. I used sharepod to transfer all the songs. I have windows 8 and it worked flawlessly. My music meant a whole lot to me and to have it all back is amazing. Again, Thanks so much!

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