iTunes Crashing After iPhone 2.2.1 Update?

So today I had a bit of a scare. I went to sync my iPhone 3G with my Macbook and noticed when I'd plug in the phone it would say it is syncing while iTunes simply showed nothing -- no kind of response whatsoever. Yes, everything is up to date on my Macbook so that was not the problem. After a few reboots of the Macbook and iPhone the same behavior still continued like clockwork.

Next step was to do some research online and send off an email to Rene for some more ideas. To our surprise this seems to be a bigger than we thought with many people seeing the same issue. I decided it could not hurt to give Apple a call about this and as I was on hold I figured I'd try one more time and shockingly it worked. I had to do a double take at my screens but it worked. To make sure it was not a fluke I unplugged everything and rebooted both Macbook and iPhone, still worked!

This issue seems to be completely random and Apple claims to be looking into it. So, if this happens to you, keep trying to sync, chances are you may get lucky. I'd say avoid doing a complete restore to your phone because if it does lock up during the restore you will be left with a empty iPhone. That's not good.

Hope Apple updates iTunes fast to prevent this from happening to any of our readers. In the meantime, have any of you had this misfortune?

Let us know!

[Thanks to @Rene for the backup!]

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Reader comments

iTunes Crashing After iPhone 2.2.1 Update?


Glad to hear all is well now because memory addressing issues are a pain. Funny how something that seems so simple is so complicated when it comes to electronic devices. Hopefully Apple is working on it and figures it out.

Congrats on FINALLY getting this article posted.
It seems that all the iPhone blog sites steadfastly refused to post anything about this story for a full WEEK, until the thread on mac forums grew to 220 posts and over 9000 views.
The solution, posted by Roy of apple was to deauthorize and reauthorize the computer. I suspect that reset some bit in their servers somewhere, which they have by now probably written a routine to go thru and reset a mass.
This affected mostly Mac users, with a very small smattering of windows user who may have actually had a different problem all together.
To Rene: We rely on you to bring us this kind of news big guy. Don't spend so much time reviewing apps and posting week in review entries that you miss the big picture topics like these.

@icebike, in all honesty this just happened to me today. None of us had a single issue prior to this. Me writing this had nothing to do with the other web site you mention. Regardless, I did not have to deauthorize and reauthorize my account on my Mac to get the issue solved. If it happens again, I will keep this in mind.

I had this happen yesterday with my PC. I connected my iPhone and did a sync. Then after doing some other things I saw I had some app updates, I downloaded them on my PC. Hit sync again, the iPhone said it was syncing but iTunes showed no response and it crashed/closed 10 seconds later. At first I couldn't get my iPhone to respond either but after a few tries it let me slide to cancel the sync.
I opened iTunes up again and it seemed to be working, but it did not detect my iPhone that was still connected to my PC. I disconnected my iPhone, closed iTunes, and restarted my PC. After doing this things worked again. I saw the threads on Apple's forums and it does seem totally random. Everything on my PC is up to date so I don't know what it could be.

Thanks, it's undying love and effection like this that make it all worthwhile! :p Next time drop me a note or even better -- post in the forum and we'll get it up asap. Helping users solve problems is the most important thing on our agenda -- once in a while we just need good readers to generously point us in the right direction.

@sting7k: I think yours is a different problem: a simple driver crash in the machine. I've seen this too, and a reboot fixes it by reloading the drivers in your PC. Having another device plugged into the same USB bus can also cause this, such as my slowly failing thumb drive.
The referenced thread in the article could not be fixed by any amount of rebooting. It had Apple totally stumped for about a week.

I had this issue and researched that is is some kind of DRM problem. I deauthorized and then reauthorized iTunes and then everything worked fine.

@icebike, saw that, seems like a simple cookie cutter response to a complaint about the issue. I've seen some have luck with the whole authorize trick and some it did not help. Like I said, I did not have to do that. So I'd say that is not the answer in all cases.

Speaking of restore does that cover my contacts list and everything? If I exchange my iPhone for a new one sync brings everything back?

my itunes keeps not recognizing my phone when i plug it in, and i have keep trying and keep restarting my phone, because this process makes it freeze.
anything i can do about that?

best thing you could do is put the iphone back in its box an send it back to apple... problem solved!

I had the same exact problem. And if it was random I couldn't tell, it crashed iTunes at least 20 times.
I was going nuts until I saw the suggestion about de/re authorizing iTunes. I deauthorized, reauthorized and the next sync worked just fine.
I know that's not 100% proof of causation, but given how consistently it crashed and the fact that I changed exactly that one thing, I'd say it's pretty likely that the authorization move was the trick to making it work again.

Hey guys. Uhm yea on my iPhone 3g my apps have been crashing like instantly I reset it 3 times restored it 4 times it's still if anybody could please help me with this problem that would be great. I'd also like to add that I used a friends iTunes account to update an app or two and buy an app or two because there had been an issue with mine and I'm not jailbroken either.

i have a problem, too! my ipod and iphone, they BOTH dont want to update any of my applications. well, sometimes they DO inform me i have new updates but when i try to do them, it wont process. then later i try again and all of a sudden it'll say "there are no updates" wtf?

Windows driver is broken, appears to have loaded the wrong driver. Iphone is not viewable from Itunes because of it.
Will attempt a re-boot...

I just got the 3G and upgraded to 2.21.
Battery Performance is pretty bad...With everything shut off ( 3G, Wifi, GPS, Push Mail, Brightness dimmed) I have to charge between 5 hours of usage ...( 2 hours of call time included)
I got the Free Memory Application.
What I noticed is once you open and quit applications like iPod, Safari and Mail, they still run in background.
This is shown by Free Memory. The only way to quit these applications is to turn off the phone!!! So everytime i use ipod/mail/safari, I really have to turn off the phone to quit these applications.
Are you guys facing the same issue???...Can you pls advise on how to get this right?
Is that the reason why battery is discharging so fast??

Hi I have the same problem. I am very new to iphone it was a week i bought iphone 3g and when for the first time i connected it to winXP itunes it asked me to update(to 2.2.1) i did so but while it was installing the update it crashed , gave me an error and ever since i have this recovery mode screen on.
What happening?
1. Iphone isn't detectable on my pc.
2. I cant do anything on it except to see the restore screen.
3. It turns off automatically after 1min or so.
4. I have another iphone same model and 3g that is fine and is detectable on the same machine (so no driver problems i think)
I tried pressing pressing home button while connected to my computer and i got this screen
I tried quickpwn and izipPhone but no one detects my iphone. Am totally new to iphone any help will be appreciated thanx.

Does anyone else have extremely slow response time between applications? 3G, 2.2.1 and it takes 20+ seconds to get to phone but usually crashes first. same with contacts. Apple replaced first phone a few weeks ago as they said it was hardware issue. Seoond phone doing same.

I have started having this problem continously the past few days, but it does not present itself when trying to sync, rather it happens the moment I select my iPhone in iTunes. Tried going to File menu and synching from there but iTunes simply crashed. Both my MacBook Pro and iPhone are up to date in software. I have Lion on the Mac and the latest update of iOS 5.1