By Stephanie / Last update April 7, 2022

User’s case: how to unlock my iPhone screen?

"I forgot my iPhone password. I saved lots of vital files on the iPhone. Now I want to get access to them. So please tell me how to unlock my iPhone screen without losing data? Thanks a lot."

In our daily life, we use so many passwords to keep our data private and safe. Commonly, the kinds of passwords are mixed up and we forget the locking password. There are always iPhone users who ask "Is there any way to recover iPhone password without losing data?"

If you forgot your iPhone password or attempted many times to unlock the iPhone, you will be locked out of your iPhone or your iPhone will become disabled. Unfortunately, there's no method to recover the password itself. The passwords are lost. The most worrying problem is the data existing in the iPhone. Don't worry, there are still two methods you could recover your iPhone password without losing data.

Two methods to recover iPhone password without losing data

You could recover your iPhone to the state before being locked out. You will not even lose any data in the process. The procedure will be somewhat complicated. You'll need to wipe your phone and then restore it. However, you will be able to recover the data from a backup.

If you have connected iTunes to your computer before, you could make a backup first and then put your iPhone to Recovery Mode to reset. Alternatively, you could erase your iPhone from iCloud.com and then reset your iPhone.

Pre-unlock iPhone: make a backup via iTunes

Before taking the methods below to unlocking iPhone, the first step should be to make a backup via iTunes, then your existing data would be safe and could be recovered to your iPhone.

Step 1. Launch iTunes on your computer and connect your locked iPhone to the computer which you have trusted before.

Step 2. Click the device icon. And then go to “Summary” and click “Back Up Now” under the Backups menu.

click-backup-now

Step 3. Wait for the backup process to complete. And then you could try the two methods to remove your iPhone password.

Method 1. Unlock iPhone via factory reset

You need your iPhone, a computer, and a lightning cable to make your locked iPhone use again. Follow the steps to put your iPhone into Recovery Mode manually.

Step 1. Press and hold your Power button to turn off your iPhone. For iPhone X/SE 2 or later, press and hold the Side button and Volume Down button.

turn-off-iphone

Step 2. Force restart your iPhone and put your iPhone into Recovery Mode by pressing buttons on your iPhone.  

For iPhone X/XS/XR/11/12/8/8plus/SE 2:

Step 1. Press and fast release the Volume Up button.

Step 2. Press and fast release the Volume Down button.

Step 3. Press and hold the Side button (Power) until the “Connect to iTunes” screen appears.

For iPhone 7/7 plus:

Press the Volume Down button and Sleep/Wake button simultaneously don't release the buttons when you see the Apple logo, wait until the “Connect to iTunes” screen appears.

For iphone 6/6s/SE 1:

Press the Sleep/Wake button and Home button simultaneously, don't release the buttons when you see the Apple logo, wait until the “Connect to iTunes” screen appears.

iphone-recovery-mode

Step 3. Connect your iPhone to the computer. And then there will be a pop-up window on iTunes. It shows “There is a problem with the iPhone ‘iPhone’ that requires it to be updated or restored.”

itunes-update-note

Step 4. Click “Restore” and wait for the factory reset process to complete, and then reset your iPhone for the first time use.

Step 5. Connect your iPhone to the computer and click “Restore Backups” to recover iTunes backup to your iPhone.

recover-data-via-itunes

 Extra tip: Recover iPhone data via iCloud backups

Step 1. Reset your iPhone when comes to APPs & Data screen. Tap “Restore from iCloud Backup”.

apps-data-screen-iphone

Step 2. Sign in to your iCloud account and select the backup files from the list and wait for the restore process to complete.

Method 2. Reset and restore your iPhone using the iCloud.com

You could factory reset your iPhone and restore your data if you have iCloud or iTunes backups. Simply ensure that the iPhone you are resetting is linked to Wi-Fi or a cellular network before attempting to wipe it, otherwise, it will not work.

Need to mention that this method requires you signed into iCloud.com before because it needs two-step verification to get into your account. Another condition is that Find My iPhone is enabled on your iPhone. If the two prerequisites are satisfied, please follow the steps to recover the iPhone password without losing data.

Step 1. Open iCloud.com on the browser you have trusted before.

Step 2. Sign in to your Apple ID to use iCloud.

sign-in-icloud-web

Step 3. Click “Find My iPhone” > “All Devices”.

all-devices

Step 4. Select your iPhone from the devices list.

Step 5. Click “Erase iPhone”, then the password and data on the iPhone will be removed.

erase-iphone

Step 6. You could recover your data from your iTunes or iCloud backup. (See Method 1, step 5)

Conclusion

To sum up, this post shows how to recover your iPhone password without losing data via making a backup and factory reset. Apple purposefully makes the passcode reset process difficult. It is a security feature that prevents your data from falling into other hands, such as if your iPhone is stolen.

It's inconvenient, but at least you'll know your data is protected if your smartphone is stolen. I understand this isn't much consolation if you've just forgotten your passcode, but it's the only option until Apple comes up with a better alternative.

The best way to avoid iPhone data loss is to make a regular backup via iTunes or iCloud. FoneTool, as a professional and free iPhone backup tool, could be your best assistant to selectively back up your iPhone data and fully restore your backup to your device.