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4 Ways to Veiw Old or Deleted iMessage History [iOS 17 Supported]

DoubtUser Concern

“After upgrading to iOS 17, the iMessage history on my iPhone disappears. I had quite a substantial number of messages, and the viewer now shows none. What should I do?”

Are you looking for a particular message that you sent or received via iMessage? If you use iMessage a lot, you may have a problem browsing through your entire iMessage history to find it.

Or you have deleted important iMessages from your iPhone or iPad by mistake and then regret this decision later on. You may wonder if you can still view the deleted iMessages.

Worry not! In this article, we will walk you through the steps of how to find old iMessages, as well as how to view deleted iMessage history. Keep reading to find out how.

Is It Possible to View iMessage History?

Yes, you can view your iMessage history with the search bar in the Messages app. If your iPhone is set never to delete messages, all old iMessages will be saved on the device, and you can view them at any time you want.

If you accidentally deleted the iMessages, you may wonder if viewing them is still possible. Well, you can do so if you have backed up your iPhone either with iCloud or iTunes.

However, if you do not have any backup of your iPhone, then viewing the deleted iMessages will be challenging. You should meet two conditions: the iMessages have not been overwritten by new data on your iPhone, and you have the right iPhone data recovery tool.

How Do I Check My iMessage History on My iPhone?

You can easily view iMessage history on your iPhone by using the Message app search box. Simply enter the keyword into the search bar, and all messages containing that keyword will appear.

  1. Open the Messages app on your iPhone.
  2. Drag your finger downwards across the screen to access the search function.
  3. In the search bar, type in the keywords of the message or the name of the person you were texting to.
  4. Then tap "Search" and look through the search results to find your desired message.

find old imessages

That's it. The search bar allows you to find an old iMessage on your iPhone easily. If the iMessages have been deleted, don't worry; we'll show you how to view the deleted iMessage history in the next part.

How to View Deleted iMessage History

So, what is the best iPhone data recovery tool you can use to view both existing and deleted iMessage history? Here, we recommend FoneGeek iPhone Data Recovery.

It is very easy to use, allowing users to view existing data and recover deleted files directly on iPhone/iPad or from iTunes/iCloud backup.

Before we show you how to view deleted iMessage history on your PC or Mac, the following are some of the reasons that make this tool the best:

  • You can view both existing and deleted iMessage histories on your iPhone/iPad without backup.
  • You can also extract and view iMessages in your iTunes and iCloud backup without resetting the device.
  • Allows you to view and recover up to 18 different types of data, including photos, videos, contacts, WhatsApp, Viber, notes and many more.
  • It is very easy to use, as we shall see shortly and allows for preview and selective data recovery.
  • It is also compatible with the latest iOS devices and iPhone models, including iOS 17/16 and iPhone 15/14.

Download and install FoneGeek iPhone iMessage Recovery software on to your computer and then follow these simple steps to view deleted iMessage history:


Option 1: View Deleted iMessages on iPhone Directly

  1. Open the program on your computer and select "Recover from iOS Device" from the main window. Then, connect your iPhone to the computer using a USB cable.
  2. When the program detects your device, select "Messages & Attachments" from the list of data types and then click "Scan".
  3. The program will scan the device for both existing and deleted messages. When the scan is complete, you will be able to view the iMessages on the next screen.
  4. Select the iMessages you need to save on your computer and click "Recover".

preview photos ios

Option 2: View iMessage History from iTunes Backup

  1. Run the program and select "Recover from iTunes Backup". You will see a list of iTunes backup files available on this computer.
  2. Now choose the backup with the iMessages you would like to view and click "Scan" to begin scanning the selected backup for the iMessages.
  3. Once the scan is complete, you should see the iMessages on that backup file. Select the ones you would like to save to your computer and then click "Recover".

view imessages from itunes backup

Option 3: View iMessage History from iCloud Backup

  1. Launch the program and choose "Recover from iCloud". Sign in to your iCloud account and then choose the relevant backup file. Click "Download" to continue.
  2. Select "Messages" as the type of data you would like to view, and then click "Scan" to allow the program to begin scanning the backup for the messages.
  3. The program will download the messages from iCloud. When the download is complete, you can view the iMessages on the backup, select some you'd like to save and click "Recover".

view imessages from icloud backup

More FAQs about iMessage History

How Long Does the iPhone Save iMessage History?

The iPhone saves iMessage history for 30 days by default, but you can modify this through the Settings app. You have the option to keep the iMessages for 30 days, for a year or forever.

If you choose to save the iMessage history forever, the messages will only be deleted when you remove them manually. And if you choose the other two options, the messages will be automatically deleted after that period.

Can I See Deleted iMessage History without Backup?

Yes, you can. If you want to view and recover deleted iMessage history but there is no backup, then you can try third-party data recovery software like FoneGeek iPhone Data Recovery. This professional tool can scan your iPhone and recover deleted iMessages as long as the data hasn't been overwritten.


If you want to view your old iMessage history on your iPhone or iPad, this post will save you. In case you've deleted important iMessages by mistake, FoneGeek iPhone Data Recovery is of great help to you. It can recover deleted iMessages, photos, contacts, and more from iPhone/iPad with or without backup. If you have any questions, problems or feedback about this program, let us know in the comments section below. Your feedback helps us improve the product and is always valuable to us.

Edwin J. Parke

As a professional writer who is interested in technology, Edwin J. Parke has helped thousands of users by offering various tips to solve their problems.

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