“HELP!! iTunes error 9006? - Okay, I forgot my iPhone passcode so I’m trying to restore it. But halfway after its done when it says 'iPhone Software Updating (processing file)'' The error pops up saying 'There was a problem downloading the software for the iPhone (my iPhone name). An unknown error occurred (9006). Make sure your networks settings are correct and your network connection is active, or try again.' I tried like 10 times and the same thing keeps happening! My network settings are active and connected, I made sure all the firewall and everything was off, restarted my computer, changed the control panel LAN settings, everything. Nothing works. PLEASE HELP! Thank you in advance!” – A question from Apple Support Communities.

iTunes displays error message with code (9006) while attempting to update or restore iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, how to fix? This iTunes error 9006 has been reported by multiple iTunes and iOS users. Some people report that multiple attempts to restore their mobile devices result in this error message and leading to confusion. There are several methods and tips to resolve this frustrating issue. In this guide, we will show you how to fix iTunes error 9006.

Part 1: Possible Reasons that Cause iTunes Error 9006

In most cases, this error occurs when iTunes software fails to connect to iOS software update servers. Problems connecting to associated servers can be caused by a weak Internet connection or firewall and anti-virus software. Fortunately, this specific error does not indicate that serious hardware or software crashes were detected.

Mostly, the error is triggered due to the inability to make iOS connection. Other causes may include server updates, failed downloads, interrupted or incomplete downloads, application cache and task manager issues, and few more. Some core causes may include:

  • iTunes lose its communication with Apple servers
  • Issues in a user’s network connection
  • Apple servers may be busy or not responding
  • Apple update gets interrupted in between
  • Firewall or Antivirus issues

By knowing the possible causes that result in iTunes error 9006 on Mac/Windows 10, we now could move forward to the solutions on fixing iTunes error 9006.

Part 2: How to Fix iTunes Error 9006?

As mentioned above, there are several different ways to help you fix iTunes error 9006 on Mac and Windows 10/8/7. Well, you could try the below solutions to see if the iTunes error 9006 could be solved or not.

Method 1. Update iTunes

Sometimes problems with software updates or downloads occur when iTunes is outdated. Check if your iTunes is the latest version or not. If not, just update iTunes to the latest version.

Check the below steps to check for updates and install update if any update is available:

  • To ensure you are using the latest iTunes version, launch App Store and select the updates tab. If you find any updates related to iTunes, install them all.
  • If you are using iTunes with a Windows computer, launch the application and click the Help tab. Then scroll down and select Check for updates.

Try if the iTunes error 9006 has been fixed or not. If not, continue the below solutions.

Method 2. Update your operating system

When you are using several operating systems simultaneously, you can experience compatibility issues. There can be any compatibility mismatch. For avoiding this, you can keep the application plus OS updated. To check for the updates on Mac, go to the App Store and choose the updates tab. You can install required updates from here related to macOS.

Method 3: Connect to a different WiFi

Another simple method suggests connecting to the different network. Even though Internet connection seems fine, trying other WiFis might help to get rid of the iTunes error and download necessary updates or apps.

Method 4: Login admin account

iTunes error 9006 is also caused if there is a lack of permission for connecting to external servers or file attachment issues to computer startup disk. For avoiding this, you should first login with the administrator account and then try to restore the device’s software. If admin users are more than one, try logging in from each of them one by one.

Method 5: Reboot Your iPhone and Computer

There are instances when the problem can be fixed by refreshing the software of your phone and computer. Refresh both systems by doing a reboot.

  1. Turn off software firewalls and anti-virus apps > Reboot your iPhone > Reboot your computer.
  2. Reconnect your iPhone to the computer by using a different USB port on your computer. The iPhone error 9006 should be solved now.

Method 6: USB connection issues

If you are using additional USB peripherals, there might be a conflict between devices. To ensure this is not the case, disconnect all of them except the mouse and keyboard. Try to perform a mobile device restore or update without USB peripherals to ensure that you are not experiencing a conflict between them. Various iTunes errors can sometimes appear to due to a faulty cable. Check that cables do not contain dark or damaged spots. Also, you are advised to use original Apple cables only. There can also be issues within the USB port itself, so try connect your mobile device to another port.

Method 7. Turn off antivirus

Sometimes antivirus programs prevent from installing apps. Therefore, you can try temporarily disabling them to fix iTunes Error 9006:

  1. Open your security program and find “Disable” or “Turn off” button.
  2. Restart the device.
  3. Launch iTunes and check if the problem was resolved.

Additionally, you should check if a firewall or other Internet security settings do not block communication to albert.apple.com or phobos.apple.com.

Method 8: Verify date and time

Time and date are typically syncing automatically. However, in some cases, the date and time setting might not be defaulted to being set automatically. Therefore, make sure your device is running the correct time and date:

Follow the below steps to learn how to verify the date and time:

  1. Click on Apple logo at the top on your Mac computer.
  2. Pick System Preferences and then select Date & Time.
  3. Tick the box at Set date and time automatically.

Method 9: Fix iTunes error 9006 on Mac by replacing IPSW file

When updating your mobile device such as iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, your computer downloads a new updated IPSW file from Apple's servers. iTunes error 9006 might be caused due to a failed IPSW file. In this case, the only effective method to solve the problem is to replace the existing file with a new updated file.

To fix iTunes error 9006 on Mac by replacing IPSW file, follow the below steps:

  1. Find your iOS IPSW file here: ~/Library/iTunes/iPhone (iPad, or iPod) Software Updates (for some old Mac OS computers, the iOS IPSW file might be stored here: ~/Library/Application Support/iTunes/iPhone Software Updates). Delete the IPSW file.
  2. Download the updated IPSW file from Apple’s IPSW file center. Select your device (the precise version that you own) and finally select the version of the IPSW file for downloading to your computer in a location that’s easy to find.
  3. Next, connect your mobile device to the computer via a USB cable and launch the iTunes app.
  4. In iTunes, click on the iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch icon beside the left side bar, and then select the Summary section from the left sidebar. In the main window you will see Update and Restore device buttons.
  5. Hold down the Command and Option keys and choose the button depending on actions you wish to perform. This combination will allow you to choose the IPSW file.
  6. When file browser opens, select the newly downloaded update file and click Open.

This should have helped you fix the iTunes error 9006 on Mac.

Method 10: Fix iTunes error 9006 on Windows 10/8/7 by replacing IPSW file

To fix iTunes error 9006 on Windows 10/8/7, one of the most effective ways is to replace the IPSW file. Firstly, you need to find the iOS device IPSW file location. Refer to the below directories:

  1. To find ISPW file on Windows XP go to: \Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPhone Software Updates
  2. Windows Vista and Windows 7 operating systems: \Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPhone Software Updates
  3. Windows 8 and Windows 10: \Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\iTunes\

Now, after finding out the iOS IPSW file location, remove it. Then, go to the Apple’s IPSW file center to download the right IPSW file according to your iOS device (the precise version and model you own). Save the latest IPSW file onto your computer. Then,

  1. Connect your mobile device to the computer via a USB cable and launch the iTunes program.
  2. In iTunes, click on the iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch icon beside the left side bar, and then select the Summary section from the left sidebar.
  3. In the main window, you will see Update and Restore device buttons.
  4. Hold down the Shift key and choose the button depending on the actions you are performing. The combination of Shift and click will allow you to choose the IPSW file.
  5.  When the file browser opens, select the newly-downloaded update file and click Open.

In this way, you should have fixed the iTunes error 9006 on Windows 10/8/7 easily.

Besides these above 10 solutions, you could also try other ones, like resetting TCP/IP, restoring your iOS devices, etc.

Part 3: Best iTunes Alternative to Backup iPhone/iPod/iPad - Leawo iTransfer

When we connect iOS devices to iTunes, we actually try to install iOS, transfer data from iTunes to iOS, backup iOS device, restore iOS device, etc. However, what about transferring iOS data or files to iTunes? Apple only allows its customers to transfer data and files purchased from iTunes Store from iOS device to iTunes. You can’t transfer data and files non-purchased data and files from iOS to iTunes. If you have to, try the best iTunes alternative to backup iPhone, iPod and iPad – Leawo iTransfer.

We know that when we back up iOS device to iTunes, we back up the whole iOS device to iTunes to save as a file that is not accessible for viewing and editing. However, Leawo iTransfer enables you to transfer selected data and files from iOS devices to iTunes library or computer. As the best iTunes alternative in data backup, Leawo iTransfer could:

  • Transfer data between iOS devices, iTunes and computer.
  • Transfer data between two iOS devices, supporting the latest iOS devices.
  • Transfer data between iTunes, computer and external drives directly.
  • Support to transfer 12 kinds of files including pictures, music, videos, messages, contacts, bookmarks, etc.
  • View data and files on your iOS devices from computer, and edit or delete them freely.
  • Make iPhone, iPad and iPod as flash drives.
  • Manage iPhone, iPad, iPod and iTunes playlists.
  • Helps users get rid of the shortage of iTunes sync, which erases all existing data and files on iOS devices.

Obviously, if you want to back up iOS dvices iPhone, iPad and iPod) to iTunes or computer, Leawo iTransfer would be a better choice over iTunes.