iOS 4.1 Jailbreak Guide for iPhone 4, 3GS and 3G Using PwnageTool

October 25, 2010 — by Simon Ng19



iOS 4.1 Jailbreak Guide for iPhone 4, 3GS and 3G Using PwnageTool

October 25, 2010 — by Simon Ng19

A few days ago, iPhone Dev Team released the an updated version of PwnageTool to cater for iOS 4.1 jailbreak. To walk you through the jailbreak process, I have updated the jailbreak guide for PwnageTool and the guide works for iPhone 3G, 3GS and iPhone 4.

Okay, let’s go straight to the jailbreak procedures.

Before you read on and take action to jailbreak your iPhone, please note that:

  • This jailbreak guide is for PwnageTool, which is for Mac Only. If you do not have Mac, try to seek a friend with a Mac. You can use his/her Mac to create the custom firmware (i.e. IPSW file) and restore it on your Windows machine.
  • This guide is for jailbreaking only. But as PwnageTool can preserve the existing baseband, you use ultrasn0w to unlock your iPhone after jailbreaking.
  • You can use this guide to jailbreak iPhone 4, 3GS and 3G. If you are using jailbroken iPhone running OS 3.1.x or 4.0.x, you can also use PwnageTool to create the custom firmware to upgrade and jailbreak iOS 4.1.
  • As usual, jailbreaking may void your warranty and this guide is just for reference only. For any reason, it may not work for your iPhone. So, use it at your own risk.

Ready? Let’s get started.

Preparation for the jailbreak

1. First, make sure you have upgraded to iTunes version 10 (or up) and backup your iPhone data by synchronizing it with iTunes.

Tip: If you’re upgrading the iPhone from older version of firmware, make sure you sync the iPhone with iTunes. This ensures all your SMS, contacts and applications can be restored after the firmware upgrade.

2. Download all the files including PwnageTool 4.1.2 (or download from here) and iOS 4.1 firmware (iPhone 4 / 3GS / 3G)

Tip: Please use Firefox to download the iOS 4.1 file. Do not use Safari as by default it’ll unzip the IPSW file.

3. Launch PwnageTool_4.1.2.dmg and copy PwnageTool to your desired folder. It’s recommended you put it into the same folder that contains the IPSW file.

Note: If you’re jailbreaking iPhone 3GS or 3G, the IPSW file should be iPhone2,1_4.1_8B117_Restore.ipsw and iPhone1,2_4.1_8B117_Restore.ipsw respectively.

4. Finally, connect your iPhone to the dock/USB cable. Please keep connected for the whole process and close iTunes if it has been launched.

Running PwnageTool 4.1.2

5. Let’s start the core part. Go to the folder you save PwnageTool. Click “PwnageTool” to launch it.


6. Click “Expert mode” and select iPhone. Then click the arrow to continue.

7. Next, select the “Browse for IPSW” option and click the arrow to continue. PwnageTool will pop up a dialog for you to select the IPSW file. Select the firmware file you have downloaded in step 2.

Note: Please note the above screenshot is for iPhone 4. For iPhone 3GS/3G, the firmware file will be different.

9. In PwnageTool main menu, select “General” and click the blue arrow.

In general settings, please set the root partition size to 888MB. This value works fine for me. But if you have any problem with your jailbreak, you can try to set the partition size to larger value (say, 900MB).Once you’ve configured the size, click the blue arrow to continue.

Note: If you are using a legitimate iPhone from official carrier (for instance, iPhone with AT&T), you need to uncheck the “Activate the iPhone” option.

10. Next, you will be go through several configuration screens. Keep all the default settings and proceed as shown.

11. After complete all the settings, you will go back to the main screen. Select “Build” and click the arrow to start building the custom firmware.

12. Accept the default filename for the custom firmware. (Of course, you can choose a better name)

13. Next, Pwnage will start creating a custom firmware file that will be used later to recover the iPhone. During the process, you will be prompted to enter your logon password.

Put your iPhone into DFU Mode

14. Now, Pwnage shows you some instructions to follow. You should follow exactly the instructions to put your iPhone in DFU mode. Remember timing is important!

15. By following exactly the instruction, your iPhone can enter DFU mode. In case you fail, don’t panic! It won’t brick your iPhone. I did the procedures twice when I first jailbreak my iPhone.

DFU mode success

16. Ok, your iPhone should appear as if it’s turned off. Don’t touch it. Quit Pwnage and go to the final procedures.

Install the Custom Firmware

So far what you have completed is that you have created a custom iOS 4.1 and put your iPhone into DFU mode. The remaining procedures are to use iTunes and install that custom firmware onto the iPhone.

17. Start iTunes and it automatically detects your iPhone is in recovery mode.

iTunes Recovery

18. Confirm “OK”. Hold down “Option” button and click “Restore”. You will be prompted to select the firmware file. Remember to select the custom firmware file.

Note: For iPhone 3GS and 3G, the filename is different. Please choose the correct file accordingly.

19. Now, iTunes will start loading the firmware onto iPhone. Don’t touch anything, keep your iPhone connected. It may take several minutes to complete the process. Once complete, iTune will prompt you that it has recovered your iPhone to the default factory settings.

20. Okay, I believe everything is smooth. You should see your iPhone boots up with iOS 4.1.

21. Finally, you can sync back all your data using iTunes.

Note: As said before, PwnageTool does not handle the unlock for you. To unlock your iPhone, follow this guide and use ultrasn0w to unlock it.

Simon Ng

Founder, developer and chief blogger of simonblog.com

  • JD

    Awesome, thanks Simon. I was waiting for this, ill be testing for tomorrow!!

  • Eric

    Any idea when to expect this for 3G on PC ? I’m still on 3.0 !!!

  • Ayanda

    Yeah I’m on also using a 3g on 3.1.2 and have a pc and wondering if there is a ox version coming out…pliz help

  • Ayanda

    I’m sorry I meant pc version

    • @Ayanda,

      Sn0wbreeze is the Windows version of PwnageTool. I think it’ll be released very soon. You can subscribe to our blog via Facebook, Twitter or RSS for the update.

  • Monicoj

    You can use Safari for downloading .ipsw files. Just go to Safari/Preferences/General
    and uncheck the box ‘open”safe” files after downloading’. Done. Next time you download .ipsw file Safari will not unzip the content.

    • @Monicoj, thanks for your sharing!

  • Mario

    IF I create the custom firmware (i.e. IPSW file) on MAC and restore it on Windows machine. Shall I continue following the same steps .
    Thanks for you if you can post the steps to follow using Windows .

  • doug

    Bravo! so then I gather that my existing Cydia programs on my 3GS 4.0.1 will be retained as part of the backup and upgrade, correct?

    • @doug,

      To backup cydia program, you can use APTBackup or PkgBackup. Try to search the app in cydia.

  • Pablo

    Please help me! I’m running my iphone 4 on 4.0.1 right now and wanto to upgrade but cant risk to update my baseband since i need ultrasn0w…so when using pwnage tool on step 7 it gives me an error: “Wrong firmware bundle selected” but i have the exact same one used on ur example…do i have to first upgade to 4.1 using itunes an THEN restore?! please help!

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  • Shijin

    Is i can unloack 05.14.02 Baseband with this procedure?

    • @Shijin,

      No unlock solution is available for 05.14.02 baseband yet.

      • Shijin

        Simon, Is you having any idea when it will release?

        • Not sure yet. Will keep you updated.

  • Jsrking

    Hey Simon!
    I just finishing jailbreaking my 4g, everything went smooth. But ultrasnow won´t unlock it. I Got 4.1 version and 02.10.04 firmware. I´ve looked to see if that firmware can be unlocked but I found nothing!
    Thanks in advance!

  • Cel

    How many times can I jail break my iphone 3g? I jail broke it last night, but i selected the wrong tab, then my iphone would not make phone calls. I restore back to factory settings, and now I want to know is it ok if I jailbreak my iphone again (correctly this time).

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