Hackers post techniques for reversing iPhone upgrade

Hackers have released instructions for rolling back a recent iPhone firmware update that broke hacked phones.

Owners of hacked iPhones have begun posting instructions on how to roll back a recent Apple firmware upgrade that rendered their mobile phones unusable.

The instructions were available Monday on the iPhone Dev Wiki, a Web site devoted to iPhone software hacks and tools.

Since the iPhone's launch, enthusiasts have been developing ways to allow the devices to run unauthorized software and to unlock them so that they can be run on any mobile network. Late last week, however, Apple cracked down on these efforts by releasing a software upgrade that made hacked iPhones unusable.

Since that release, however, hackers have been working on techniques that reverse the effects of this upgrade.

These latest instructions allow users to roll back their firmware upgrades and use some functions like the phone's iPod and Wi-Fi capabilities, but they do not necessarily restore the phone's ability to make calls, according to the iPhone Dev Wiki. That's because hackers have not yet found a way to roll back the firmware used by the iPhone's baseband chip, which is used to make calls.

"So far all attempts to downgrade the baseband have been unsuccessful," the Wiki said. "There have been several reports of successful baseband downgrades online, but these haven't been confirmed. "

Another major area of research has been into techniques that can unlock iPhones that are running the latest 1.1.1 firmware.

But because Apple has now done a much better job of encrypting its iPhone firmware, this will be a much harder job than it was the first time around, said Tom Ferris, a security researcher who works on hacking the iPhone.

That's what everybody's working on right now is trying to get into the firmware," he said. "Just like Steve Jobs said, it's a cat and mouse game."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Robert McMillan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?