TA - Backing Up Apple Configurator

Posted by:   on Oct 28, 2013 | http://www.classthink.com/2013/10/28/backing-apple-configurator/



Apple Configurator


Apple Configurator contains your user’s iPad data, paid apps, and backups. Loosing it means wiping your iPads and starting from scratch. We show you how to backup and restore Apple Configurator.






Apple Configurator is a great tool for managing large numbers of iPads, but it's also a single point of failure that can cost you money, data, and time. If your iPads are supervised by Apple Configurator they are permanently tied to a single Mac. If there is a fault, such as a hard drive failure, which causes your Apple Configurator data files to be lost you will no longer be able to manage your iPads. The only solution to this is to factory reset the iPads and supervise them on another Mac, resulting in the loss of any data on the iPad.


But it's especially important to backup Apple Configurator if you are using Apple's Volume Purchase Program to buy apps and iBooks. Once a VPP code has been used to install an app Apple Configurator keeps a record of which iPad the app was installed on. If you loose your Apple Configurator data files this record is lost and you can no longer install that app on another device. You will effectively loose access to all your paid apps and iBooks and have to purchase them again.


So, make sure you're backing up Apple Configurator.


How to Backup Apple Configurator


The first step is to find the ~/Library/Containers/com.apple.configurator folder. This contains all your Apple Configurator settings, apps, and backups.



  1. Click on your Desktop.

  2. At the top of your screen, click Go

  3. With that menu expanded, press and hold ⌥ Alt.

  4. Library will appear in the list, click it and you'll be taken to the folder.

  5. Open the Containers folder and the com.apple.configurator folder should be within.


Copy the com.apple.configurator file to a safe location. Ideally backups should be stored on a computer in a different location to your Apple Configurator Mac.


You can also use Apple's Time Machine, or third-party software such as Backup Exec to automate backing up this folder.


How to Restore Apple Configurator to a New Mac


First, install Apple Configurator from the Mac App Store. Once this has been done you can restore the backup from your other Mac.



  1. Click on your Desktop.

  2. At the top of your screen, click Go

  3. With that menu expanded, press and hold ⌥ Alt.

  4. Library will appear in the list, click it and you'll be taken to the folder.

  5. Open the Containers folder and the com.apple.configurator folder should be within.


Delete the com.apple.configurator file and replace it with the backed up copy from your old Mac.


You can also use Apple's Time Machine, or third-party software such as Backup Exec to restore this folder.


Special Note from Susan Ryan:  
"A back up of the com.apple configurator files from the Containers folder in Application Support will only work as a restore on the same computer. The data is saved but the supervision certificate is not. If you try and put the data on another computer, Apple Configurator does not see the device as supervised - even though you can 'see' the iPad in the data file. This information needs to be saved in order to manage the supervised devices on another machine:




You may also want to recover the contents of ~/Library/Keychains and /var/db/lockdown from the backup of the same date, to recover the Supervision Certificate, public and private keys and device pairing information. These will allow supervised devices to reconnect to the host computer."


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