My wife uses her iPad (first generation) a lot, but never syncs with her laptop.

So she never updated to IOS 5, because she never got a message to do so.

Her laptop is gone. I would like to update her iTunes and install IOS 5. But my computer has the existing partnership with my iPad.

Can I plug her iPad into my computer, without synching, for only the purpose of downloading and installing updated iTunes and IOS 5 on her iPad?

3 Answers 3


It is possible to sync several iOS devices to the same computer account. I do it all the time with an iPhone and an iPad, it will also work with two iPads.

  • Understood, thanks. But my intent is to be able to connect and download software WITHOUT synching. If I synch her iPad to my computer, it will erase her library and replace it with mine.
    – user25056
    Jul 10, 2012 at 10:49
  • 1
    Your wife's iPad won't be erased unless it has the same device name as your iPad. That being said, I suggest that you create an separate account for your wife on your computer, and let her do the iPad/iTunes dance without affecting your account.
    – IconDaemon
    Jul 10, 2012 at 13:15
  • I appreciate the reply. But - iTunes repeatedly warns that all contents will be erased, etc. I tried the idea of creating a new account on my computer, which created a new library. But - iTunes wants to sync and erase the stuff on the iPad. So while I was able to "transfer all purchases", other material on her iPad - CDs that were burned into her library, for example - will be deleted. iTunes wants to sync to the original computer. Unless I'm missing something?
    – user25056
    Jul 11, 2012 at 3:09
  • 1
    Cancel the sync and just run a backup then (from the context menu in the sidebar)
    – nohillside
    Jul 11, 2012 at 4:48

If you want to update your wife's ipad using your own computer which is not the one in sync.

If you update your wife's Ipad using your itunes it will delete all 3rd Party apps and Music on your wife's ipad. With this issue as your wife's computer is not with us anymore, but you said you have your wife library back up right? You might try this solution, thou I haven't really tried yet. link


A better approach: Create a separate user account on the Mac and have that account login to the other Apple ID. Only sync her iPad on that account.

I took another approach: when we married, we downloaded everything stored on her iCloud, then switched her devices to my Apple ID. The reason for that is so that we could share more things than "family share" supports. Each iPad can still have a different set of Music and Apps on it. I'm told that limits us to five devices, but as of today, all six seem to be working.

  • The only apps she lost were free ones, so it was trivial to get them again.
    – WGroleau
    Nov 16, 2019 at 19:37

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