What To Try When Your iPhone Is Not Showing Up In iTunes

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There are many different people who use iPhones these days and many of them also have iTunes as a music service. 

Sometimes your iPhone will not show up in your iTunes, as in the icon for iPhone does not show up when you sync the device to your computer through a USB port.

This can be a very frustrating situation for many people, and there are some companies who offer you a solution at a price, promising to solve all kinds of situations between your iPhone and your iTunes.

In reality most of the time there's only a few issues at work that prevent your iPhone from showing up in your iTunes, and there are concrete steps you can take to fix the issue in a relatively short amount of time.

If you are one of those people that continually comes up against the problem of an iPhone not showing up in your iTunes, we have discovered some of the common causes for this and outlined some of the solutions you can use completely free of cost to rectify the problem.

Why Your iPhone is not Showing Up in Your iTunes

There are really a huge number of potential causes for those experiencing not having your iPhone show up in your iTunes, in fact there are so many that there are even some that are not easily known.

Some of the causes for this phenomenon are related to the amount of space your files are taking up, software update status, cache status, cookies, logging, outdated iOS backups, and a host of other factors.

Sometimes one of the main reasons for this phenomenon simply has to do with a new software upgrade, although there could be a number of reasons you will never know, unfortunately.

Since you can't always know the reason why your iPhone will not show up in your iTunes, it's important to have steps that will work in most situations that you would encounter this phenomenon

We have developed a series of steps for you to take when your iPhone icon will not show up in your iTunes interface, and these will work in the majority of situations that you will face when it does occur.

Steps to Fix the Problem of Your iPhone Not Showing Up in Your iTunes

When your iPhone's icon will not show up your iTunes, preventing access, although the cause me not be immediately apparent, the following steps should be able to rectify this issue promptly for you.

These steps are: Update your software, restart your computer, try another USB port, check Hardware.

1. Update your Software

mobile phone with 3d castle

Make sure your computer system is up to date. Sometimes out-of-date software will be at the heart of the issue plaguing your system at this time. If you're using a Windows system click “Start” and type in “Windows Update”. Find the tab that says “Help” under “check for updates in iTunes to update iTunes”. At this point you may even decide to completely reinstall your iTunes for good measure, and this can definitely clear the matter up in many cases.

2. Restart your Computer

macbook pro

Restart your computer including those operating your iTunes. In many cases this step alone will clear the cache and cookies and other operating functions well enough to be able to allow your iPhone to show up in your iTunes yet again.

3. Try Another USB Port

usb port

The use of another USB cable or additional USB ports on your computer can be the fix for certain types of situations where there's issues with the USB connection. A faulty USB cable can be at the heart of some of these issues in some circumstances.

4. Check Hardware

iphone and pen

If none of these methods are sufficient to solve the problem immediately, you may want to take the computer into the shop to have the hardware checked for malfunctions. This can sometimes be the case but it usually isn't so you may want to save this as a last resort.

Additional Steps You Can Take

1. Use the “Trust this Computer” Prompt


Initially when you hook up an iPhone to your computer through the USB port and try to sync it, a prompt labeled “trust this computer” will appear in a pop up on your device. One of the main reasons that your iPhone doesn't show up in iTunes is that this prompt hasn't been responded to properly.

In order to respond to this prompt properly, you must click the tab that indicates that you will trust the computer you are syncing to. Without doing so your iPhone's icon will not appear in your iTunes interface at any time.

This may be the case even if you have been playing iTunes previously and needs to be reset using the prompt. If you don't use the prompt when it asks you will be locked out of the iTunes system until you do.

If you have accidentally responded to the prompt with a “don't trust” indication, your iPhone will not show up in your iTunes and you will need to perform another procedure in order to correct this.

​In order to correct this accidental response, do the following:

phone and paper
  • 1
    Go to your internet operating system and find settings and locate the tab General.
  • 2
    Click that tab, find Reset, Location and Privacy.
  • 3
    The next time you plug your computer in an attempt to sync it, the prompt will display itself all over again and you can click trust what should correct the problem if this is what it is.
  • 4
    Sometimes there is no other issue that should commonly be identified but the problem lies within what are known as drivers. This should be one of the last steps you take to try to rectify the situation, but it is known to solve the problem some of the time:
  • 5
    Reinstall the drivers for Apple windows
    In some cases, there may be a bit of a bug within the programming in Apple's drivers when used with your Windows PC and they won't properly recognize your iOS device. This can happen even if you pressed repeatedly from the prompt previously discussed. In this case, all you need to do is reinstall your drivers to solve the issue.

In order to reinstall the drivers, follow the following steps solve the problem:

man typing
  • 1
    Close your iTunes program
  • 2
    Plug your iPhone into your computer using a USB cable through the USB port
  • 3
    Open your “Start” menu and look for the “device manager tab”
  • 4
    Select the device manager tab when it pops up
  • 5
    Search for your iPhone in your device manager when it pops up, you can locate it under “portable devices”
  • 6
    Right click this tab and choose the option to “update driver software”
  • 7
    In the next window that appears select the option to “browse my computer for driver software”
  • 8
    After this step click the option “let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer”
  • 9
    On the next desk that appears click the button that says “have disc”
  • 10
    Choose “install” from disc window, then click the button that says “browse”
  • 11
    Then navigate to the C:\Program Files\Common File\Mobile Device Support\Drivers\usbaapl64.Inf
  • 12
    Double click the usbaapl64.Inf file to select it
  • 13
    Click OK from the “install from disc window”

At this point the PC that you are working on should reinstall the drivers for your apples mobile drivers. When you are finished close the device manager, restart your computer, and start iTunes all over again.

These are the main steps you should take if you find yourself in the position where your iPhone won't show up in your iTunes. in almost every case one or some of these steps will rectify the problem and you should be well on your way to listening to iTunes yet again.

When You Experience Your iPhone Not Showing Up in Your iTunes

phone with hello text

When you get to the point where you're having problems with your iPhone not showing up in your iTunes, refer to these instructions to be able to figure out and diagnose what may be going on with your system.

Before you go and do anything else, take the time to try to reset the prompt feature as this is the most common problem that happens. Other than this there are the other issues to consider which can be addressed with the steps that were outlined.

You don't have to panic or worry about the situation however as this is a common issue for many people, and these solutions usually work that have been outlined and described here.

If you cannot make any of these solutions work for you and you have tried them all, sometimes repeatedly, you may need the help of an expert. There are computer tech help centers that assist people with exceptionally difficult problems that are hard to recognize.

Reaching out to a computer tech help center may not be the solution you are immediately after but rest assured that one way or another either by using these steps that were described above or through a tech professional your situation can be resolved.

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