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A friend of mine has a first gen iPad that needs updating but doesn't have a computer to plug it into to do the update. Can I use my MBP without trashing my iTunes and her iTunes?

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    What exactly needs to be updated? iOS? Which version is installed on the iPad currently?
    – nohillside
    May 5, 2014 at 12:30
  • I don't think it has ever been updated! So I imagine everything needs updates.
    – Jammer
    May 5, 2014 at 13:32
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    Can you please be a bit more specific? Why does your friend think the iPad needs updating? Which specific iOS version is running on it?
    – nohillside
    May 5, 2014 at 13:39

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Yes, you can use your Mac and not trash anything. (Especially if you know how iTunes syncs to iOS).

For simplicity's sake, you might want to create a new account on your Mac so your friend can enter her Apple ID account in to the Mac if needed to update apps.

This also keeps her backup separate from your backup and simplifies life if you want to transfer her purchases to iTunes (which iTunes will want to do to ensure it can restore the iPad should the update/upgrade fail for some odd reason).

I would say, just start with getting a good backup to a new account and then see if the device even needs an update. If you connect her device to your iTunes on your account - you might have some learning and clean up if her contacts mix with your contacts, etc...

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You can sync multiple devices with iTunes, but new devices have to be deleted. You will recive a Notification if you plug in the device. But if your friend has the original iPad, then he must have pluged it into a computer at some time, because there was no possibility of setting up the device without a computer before iOS 5.

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Create a different user account for this job on your MB. Remember that the 1st Gen iPad doesn't upgrade further than 5.1.1, so there actually may not be an update.

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