Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have an iPhone 4 and I'm a windows 7 user; I have the latest iTunes installed on my PC and synchronized with my iPhone; I don't have any music or video in there, as I don't use the iPhone for that purpose, but I have quite a big app library.

If I'm going to reinstall Windows on my computer, or even move to a different one, what should I do to keep my iTunes library? I'm assuming the App Store keeps track of what I've purchased, but how to avoid re-downloading everything again?

share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted
How to avoid re-downloading everything again?

Your apps by default are downloaded to the location 'C:\Users\username\Music\iTunes\iTunes Media\Mobile Applications'. Take a copy of the apps from this location and back it up on an external hard drive, flash drive, DVD or a different machine.

When you re-install or move to a new machine, simply bring the apps back to the new PC and drag-drop them on to the apps section of iTunes.

share|improve this answer

Just backup your whole iTunes Library folder. On the new OS, install iTunes, copy your Library to the old place and open iTunes holding down Shift (Windows) or (Mac OS).

A dialog should appear:

enter image description here

Select Choose Library... and select your old Library (I think you have to select the xml-file inside the Library folder) and everything should be as it has been before.

Source: How to open an alternate iTunes Library file or create a new one

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.