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  • How to Sync Two iOS Devices to One Mac
Technology Articles > Entertainment > Music > How to Sync Two iOS Devices to One Mac

Have you ever tried to sync two iOS devices to one computer? Yeah, it's not so easy to do. If you try to sync two phones or tablets to one computer, you run the risk of adding a bunch of stuff to a device that you didn't want to add. If you've given up trying to sync two iOS devices to one computer successfully, fear not! There are two tried and true ways to make dual-syncing happen.

First: Set Up Separate Accounts

This is the simplest way to accomplish dual-synching if you have the time and patience. To set up two iTunes accounts, use the 'Guest Login' option that Mac provides at startup. Or, access the Guest Login option by:

1 Choosing 'System Preferences' from the Apple menu
2 Choose 'Accounts and User Groups' from the View menu
3 Choose the '+' button to add a new user account
4 Select the privileges that you want the new user to have

Now, your additional user account should be set up. If you have too many iOS devices in your home, there are other options.

Second: Create Separate iTunes Libraries

1 When iTunes opens, hold down the 'Operations' key
2 Choose 'Create Library'
3 Save the file
4 Open iTunes Preferences
5 Choose 'Advanced'
6 Uncheck the 'Copy Files...' option
7 Add files to the new library as you normally would (drag and drop or other)
8 Connect device to iTunes and sync device
9 Exit iTunes after synching
10 Press down 'Option' key when opening iTunes again
11 Choose the library you want to use

After completing these steps, you should be able to move between user accounts without any problems. There's a third option too.

Third: Manual Mode

After connecting a second device to iTunes, your iTunes menu should open as usual. Choose the device icon that's located on the sidebar. You will see synch settings. Choose the 'Manually Manage Music' option, and make sure that the device's settings are set to 'Do Not Synch Automatically.' Finally, select the 'Apply' button.

Warning Sign, Now What?

If you've just connected a second device to your iTunes account, and a nice warning sign pops up ('Warning: this iPhone is synched with another iTunes library...'), and the warning tells you that all content will be erased...well, you have two options.

You can ignore the warning and synch the device anyway (in which case, you might lose all of your content), or you can take the plunge. Technically, nothing should happen to your phone, since you are manually adding content to it (and you've made sure that nothing will be synched automatically, right?).

However, I don't want to be responsible for your losing some amazing tunes, so make sure that everything is in-check before you go through with this third option.

As you can see, it is possible to use numerous iOS devices on one Mac. You might have to go through some steps to add another device, but it's entirely possible. Note: it never hurts to back up the files that you currently have on a device if you are going to go with the simplest third option.