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I just got a new hard drive and I want to sync all my iPad stuff back into my iTunes but it's just asking to erase the iPad. I just want all my books and stuff to be back in my iTunes.

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Apple specifically doesn't want you syncing with multiple computers. To do this, you will need to find an application that will pull the data from your iPad back to your computer. It may involve jailbreaking your iPad. –  Harv Jan 27 '11 at 7:56
    
@Harv That is not accurate. While hard drive failure on a computer is not common, iTunes does offer an option to backup your purchases from an iOS device without syncing. –  mummey Jan 27 '11 at 15:53
    
@mummey Purchases, yes. –  Harv Jan 27 '11 at 15:55
    
Could you Authorize this new computer and check whether you can bring back those docs. But without using a 3rd party tool, you can't bring back the Music. –  garikapati Jan 27 '11 at 17:24
    
Authorized it, but didn't work. –  Doug Jan 28 '11 at 17:16
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2 Answers

up vote 3 down vote accepted

As I referred to in the comment:

  1. Right/(Control)-Click on iOS device in sidebar of iTunes.
  2. Select Transfer Purchases

This copies over everything you purchased using the iTMS, App store, and iBooks.

For all content you put on the device that you purchased/received elsewhere, the process is a bit more complicated. Here are some suggestions:

  • Right/(Control)-Click on iOS device in sidebar of iTunes and select Backup. These at least gives you a place you can quickly fall back on.
  • If the computer in-question is a Mac, I can't recommend Podworks enough.
  • If Windows... well I haven't tried any, but found this thread on SuperUser.

Hope this is enough to get you going. Best of luck!

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Great instructions, +1 –  Ryan Sharp Jan 27 '11 at 21:04
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If you restore the hard drive from a Time Machine backup it should copy the invisible folder that is required so you won't have to nuke & restore your iPad. The folder you need to restore is "/Users/Shared/SC Info". I'm not sure how to easily restore an invisible folder. You could try restoring the whole "/Users/Shared" if you have a Time Machine backup.

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I was assuming Macintosh. If this is Windows, I can't help. –  Mark Jan 27 '11 at 16:50
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