I don't use iCloud, and I don't want to use iCloud. I see several other questions regarding contacts and settings, but Erase and Sync seems scary for me because I don't want to sync all of my photos, well, anywhere.

I reformatted my computer and now iTunes is telling me I need to erase and sync in order to put new music on it. I've already taken loads of photos and I'm afraid those will be erased if I do Erase and Sync. I'm trying to sync music before I take my flight and don't have time to sync all of my photos

Does Erase and Sync delete photos that I've taken on the phone itself?

1 Answer 1


You are right to be cautious. The erase and sync dialogue does not tell you which specific pieces of information will be erased.

You will want to tab through each of the places where iTunes allows you to choose synchronization and make sure that photos are not checked.

With that one item, you should be safe from having your photos erased, but making a back up would be a good thing to do before you allow the erasing of unenumerated anything. Also, verify that photos are included in the back up by verifying settings in iOS if you use iCloud to do the backup.

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Here's the screen showing whether you have photos sync enabled or disabled. In my case, the iCloud settings has eliminated the chance I could erase photos over USB via iTunes.

  • So I should uncheck Photos from sync before doing Erase and Sync? Oct 29, 2015 at 16:16
  • @Qix Precisely. See my edit if you still have questions.
    – bmike
    Oct 29, 2015 at 18:02

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