Installing iTunes & Syncing your iPad

connect to itunes


iTunes acts as the gateway between your iOS device and your computer. It allows you to sync files and media from your computer to your iPad, iPhone or iPod and it is also the primary way to manage the backups.

Do not sync your iOS Device to a public computer such as those in the computer labs on campus, only use your personal computer!


  • Mac or Window PC
  • iOS Device – iPad, iPhone or iPod


Install iTunes

  1. If you don’t have iTunes installed on your computer (Window or Mac) open the browser and head to the Download page.
  2. You can untick the Email me New on iTunes and the Keep me up to date boxes if you wish.
  3. Check the hardware and software requirements to ensure that iTunes will work on your computer.
  4. Enter your email address and click on the Download Now button.
  5. Once you have downloaded the file launch the application and follow the instructions as iTunes guides you through the installation process.

First Run Sync

  1. Once iTunes has been installed on your computer use the supplied USB cable to plug the iPad into your computer.
  2. Once the iOS Device is connected a button displaying iPad, iPhone or iPod will appear in the top right of iTunes under the Search Box. Select the button
  3. The first time you sync your device you get a Set Up screen. Here you can choose to set up as a new device or to restore from a previous backup. If this is your first device or you would like to restore the device to the factory defaults select Set up as new iPad
  4. Give your iPad a unique and personalised name. iTunes will often use the name from your Apple ID – but you can call the device anything you like. For the first run turn off the check boxes for the music, photos and apps. Select Continue
  5. The iTunes display window withh now show that your device is now syncing with iTunes.

iTunes Setup Screen

iTunes setup screen

  1. You will now be shown the iTunes Setup screen. Along the top of the window you will see the Devices Name, Summary, Info, Apps, Music, Movies, TV Shows, iTunes U, Books, Photos & On This Device & Done Tabs. At the bottom of the screen you the Bar Graph show how much of the devices memory is being used by different media.
  2. On the Summary screen you can check for iOS updates, Restore the iPad to it’s default and Backup the device. There are also Options for syncing content and updating your device.
  3. The Apps screen shows you all the Apps available on your device and in iTunes. You can reorder and organise your apps on the homescreens and create folder too. The File Sharing section shows you all the apps that can store files. This section allows you to copy, save and move files between your device and your computer. Selecting an App on the left Shows the Documents panel on the left. Here you can use the Add button to copy files to the device and the Save To… button to copy files back to your computer.
  4. The Music, Movies, TV Shows, iTunes U and Books sections allows you to sync iTunes purchases and those media files already in your computers iTunes Library.
  5. The Photos screen allows you to sync photos to your iPad. You can choose a folder or if you’re on a Mac Albums and Folders from your iTunes or iPhoto and Aperture library.
  6. The On This iPad section provides a quick overview of all the content that is currently stored on you device similar to a file view on your computer.
  7. If you have made any changes to these settings you will need to press the Sync button at the bottom of the window for them to take affect.

Syncing and Backup

  1. Once you have done your initial backup iTunes will automatically sync and back up the iPad each time it is running and you plug in the device.
  2. You may wish to Manually Backup your device sometimes, recommended when doing iOS upgrades or when your doing important work. YOu can select this option on the Summary screen.

Restoring from a Backup

  1. If your iPad is damaged, there are problems with the device or if you have replaced or bought a new device you can use the Restore from Backup option in the first Run Sync process.
  2. This will restore the device only to the last backup you performed (which is why recommend regular backups – just in case).
  3. On the First Run Sync choose Restore from the Backup and select the correct device you wish to restore from.
  4. iTunes will run through the standard syncing process.

For more information on backing up and syncing see the Apple Supprot Website

I’m the Innovation Technology Officer here at CSU where I make, think, help, support, train and advise on technology in Education.

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