How to: Downgrade your iPhone OS

GPS problems? Email retrieval issues? Accidentally upgraded your iPhone OS, only to find that you can’t unlock the new firmware? Whatever problems you might be having with your newly upgraded iPhone or iPhone 3G might be solved with a quick iPhone OS downgrade. It’s not the most convenient or efficient method of dealing with iPhone and iPhone 3G problems, but an iPhone OS downgrade is a viable last-resort solution that might just keep you from pulling out your hair in frustration. So, just how do you go about downgrading the iPhone OS on that precious little handset of yours? Keep reading.

  1. First you’ll want to make sure you’re running iTunes 7.5
    • If you have a newer version, go ahead and uninstall that version of iTunes
    • Download iTunes 7.5 here
    • Install iTunes 7.5
  2. Download an older version of the iPhone OS to your desktop
    • If you’re downgrading from iPhone 2.1 OS, you’ll probably want to go with iPhone 2.0.2 OS
    • If you’re downgrading from iPhone OS 2.0.2/2.0.1/2.0.0, you’ll probably want to downgrade to iPhone OS 1.1.4
    • Find previous iPhone OS versions here.
  3. With the older version of iTunes installed, connect your iPhone or iPhone 3G to iTunes via the USB data cable
  4. Reboot your iPhone into DFU restore mode
    • Hold down the “Power” and “Home” buttons simultaneously until your iPhone turns off (ignore the “Slide to Power Off” prompt)
    • When your iPhone turns off, release the “Power” button but keep holding that “Home” button
    • Hold the “Home” button for a good 10 seconds
    • iTunes will recognize your iPhone in restore mode and prompt you to restore the iPhone before using it
  5. Force your iPhone or iPhone 3G to restore itself using the older iPhone OS that you downloaded previously
    • Mac – hold down the “Option” key as you mouse-click on “Restore” button in iTunes
    • PC – hold down the “Shift” key as you left-click on the “Restore” button in iTunes
  6. Select the older iPhone OS file that you downloaded to your desktop
  7. Enjoy your newly downgraded iPhone or iPhone 3G!
    • Ignore any 1011, 1013, 1015 errors
    • Errors like 1601, 1602, 1600 require that you put your iPhone into DFU restore mode again and force-restore again (start at Step 4)
  • Carmen Vj

    When I first brought my iPhone, I had alot of problems with it. I probably should have waited. Usually when new things come out, it is best to wait so they can get rid of all of the bugs that exist. Well I am glad I kept my iPhone and I can not live without it. Also the great tips here are awesome.

  • Kiki

    That doesn’t work, itunes 7.5 detect iphone 3g as ipod.

    any ideas

  • kriss

    I am using itunes 7.7 and it seems to be doing it.. 7.5 didn’t work, yes (iphone 3g), so use 7.7

  • Bendik

    “the file “iTunes Library.itl” cant be readed cuz it was made with a newer version of iTunes” (translated) help plz send me a message:

  • espanjol

    Hey guys, i have a big problem. i tried to do all this with 7.5 it didn’t work. then i tried to do all this with 7.7 itunes and when i click restore it does not find the download of that software 2.0.2. i don’t know what to do… i saved it on desktop, however the browser doesn’t see it. What should i do?

  • espanjol

    and my phone doesn’t turn on right now. what should i do???? please help me out.

  • banza

    Hey iphone users…! Before upgrading the 2.0.1 of the iphone, everything was nice and pretty, but now with the 2.2 it is really a hassle. I downgraded to 2.1, and I can jailbreak it, but not unlock it. Now I try to downgrade it to an earlier 2.0.1 version, and it wont let it work.
    I get to the restore point, and after finished error 1013 appears, but even if I ignore it, it wont go further. The pawnd software wont read the booters, so Im also stuck there. Apple got me this time…>!!! Buahhhhh

  • jiant

    i’ve got the same problem as banza. please help!!

  • ACID

    I have the same problem as Banza and Jiant can some one help us out i am really missin usin my i phone 🙁

  • Jeffrey

    Yea I Got The Same Problem As Banza And Acid and Jiant Can Anybody Help me out

  • Jakk

    I Can Help! First You do………
    Hmmmmm…… i’m forget hahahaha, sorry guys.

  • Ogrito

    It works but if comes back to connect Itunes screen just run RECBOOT.

    I did it myself and works 100%

  • Steve Jobs

    People, please be aware of executing the tasks mentioned above. It might be too complicated for you. By using our products you were never taught to modify any of our operating systems unlike users of minor operating systems had to learn the hard way.

    I suggest buying a new iPhone 4 to keep your customer satisfaction on a high level.

    Kind regards,


  • cole

    wont show up in itunes

  • Ripplegold

    This no longer works- tried it for hours, meticulously following steps 🙁

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