On my ancient iPad (original, 32GB), I had a subscription to PSM3 with all the issues I "own" downloaded to my device. I'd love to do a format of this device and free up some space -- as it is getting rather slow -- but I don't want to lose these issues I've paid for. Once I format the device, or delete the issues, there's no way I can get them back because the magazine is no longer in print.

Is there a way to look through the iPad's data/root folder, retrieve the files for that specific issue I've download onto the device, and transfer it to another machine, preferably my Windows 7 PC? I've looked around but have found no answer. Any ideas?

(Note: I also have access to a Mac laptop, the model I don't know, from work if that would make things easier.)

EDIT: I've also tried browsing through the system files on my PC but could not find any indication of the files I needed. A simple browse through the device does not appear to work (unless there is a specific folder I'm not looking in).

  • just plug it in Lap top, and you can see the files
    – Ruskes
    Jul 5, 2013 at 6:02
  • 1
    The are tools like iExplorer ($35, with a free trial) which let you browse the iPad file system when it’s plugged into a laptop. Poking around with this might help you recover your files.
    – alexwlchan
    Jul 5, 2013 at 6:59

1 Answer 1


As someone says above, iExplorer is a good way to view the data files on the device, but my question is this - don't you have access to your purchased periodicals even if you delete them?

Here's my test case. I bought a new device, and reinstalled a few apps from scratch, including all of my subscriptions. I checked each of them, logged in with my Apple ID, and every one that I have bought has a Download icon beside it. I even have some magazines with non-consecutive subscriptions, and the editions from each subscription are available for download. (i.e., AUG-NOV 2011 and SEP-DEC 2012).

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