REMINDER: This guide is for folks with the original “2G” or EDGE-only iPhone (pictured above). If you have an iPhone 3G, try our iOS 4 guide to get updated to the latest iPhone OS!
If you are like me and own an original 2G/EDGE iPhone and feel sad that you can’t install iOS 4 on your 2G iPhone (iPhone 3G and higher only) then you probably want to at least make sure you have the latest possible firmware on your device: which is Firmware 3.1.2 (3.1.3 is too risky in our estimation, we’ll explain below).
We have written quite a few guides on how to keep your iPhone firmware updated, jailbroken and carrier unlocked for firmwares 2.0, 2.1, 2.2.1, 3.0 and 4.0 – but we never had one for 3.1 which seemed odd.
The reason we never had a 3.1 guide ready was because shortly after 3.1.2 came out, version 3.1.3 was released which updated the baseband on 3G/3GS iPhones and remained un-crackable. So folks with carrier unlocked phones on T-Mobile for example (here in the US) would have their phones locked out from T-Mobile if they did the upgrade to 3.1.3.
At the time we thought it was too risky to put together a guide with such a small margin of error between “yay it worked with 3.1.2!” and “goddamnit my phone is bricked with 3.1.3!”. We waited and waited but there was never a clear cut crack addressing 3.1.3 and everyone moved on to iOS 4 instead.
NOTE: Apparently you can do the 3.1.3 upgrade on an original “2G”/EDGE iPhone because the 3.1.3 update does not touch the baseband on that model and relock it; which it does on the 3G/3GS. We made the executive decision to NOT make the guide that confusing though and error-prone, by requiring readers to pull down both 3.1.3 and 3.1.2 firmwares, install 1, flash the other and then install it. If you are feeling adventurous though, we will update the guide at the bottom with instructions on how to do it if you want.
We didn’t want to write you guys a guide that had such a risky margin of success, so we decided to finally write this guide for 3.1.2 (7D11) to keep things nice and safe.
And that is what this guide covers. Enjoy!
Update #1: We’ve added an “Enable MMS on your 2G iPhone w/ 3.1.2” guide for you to run through when you are done with this one to get MMS working on your phone, enjoy!
REMINDER: Before we get started, just to be safe make sure you Sync all your apps, podcasts and data with iTunes that you want on the iPhone after you are done with this guide. Some 3rd party Jailbreak apps like Cydia might not stay installed through this process and may need to be re-added, but all other purchased apps should remain. Your home-screens might get modified a bit though, so don’t worry too much if you don’t see your apps right away, just scroll farther right to find them.
Alright, let’s get started. What you will want to grab is:
- Latest iTunes 9 – I wrote this guide using version 9.1, but 9.2 should work fine.
- iPhone Firmware 3.1.2 (7D11) release (~240mb) – full name “iPhone1,1_3.1.2_7D11_Restore.ipsw“, you can use this download service here and make sure you select the right firmware download like this:
- Download the latest redsn0w (the “0” is a zero) release 0.9.4
- Because we are on an original “2G”/EDGE-only iPhone, we also need the two bootloader files that we’ve needed in our other iPhone firmware guides, you can grab both of them here:
To make things easy, you can unzip redsn0w into any directory, it will create a subdirectory named “redsn0w-win_0.9.2” (or whatever is appropriate for the platform you downloaded it on).
You can now move the 3.1.2 IPSW file and the two bootloader files into that directory and you end up with something that looks like this:
And you should be all set and ready to rock and roll!
Upgrading Your Phone
This is very similar to our iPhone 3.0 Firmware guide, in that we need to first upgrade our phone to the official 3.1.2 firmware using iTunes and then follow that up with some cracked-IPSW-redsn0w action to jailbreak and unlock the device.
REMINDER: iTunes will likely be notifying you of an update for your iPhone, but it is the 3.1.3 release – and we don’t want that. That is why we manually downloaded the 3.1.2 firmware file; we will manually apply that specific firmware next.
Fire up iTunes and go to your iPhone Device to bring up the Summary screen. Now hold down the SHIFT key and CLICK the Update button:
this brings up a file-selection dialog and allows you to choose your own custom IPSW file to upgrade the phone with isntead of automatically applying the proposed 3.1.3 firmware update.
So navigate to wherever you put your 3.1.2 IPSW file, select it, and click Open:
Next iTunes will go through a series of information dialog screens while your iPhone seems to restart over and over — you’ll likely hear a lot of “da-DUM” USB device connection/disconnection sounds from Windows in the process.
The screens look something like this:
And your iPhone will eventually look like this while it’s updating:
iTunes will eventually change to saying:
While it waits for the iPhone to finish applying the full firmware upgrade (the iPhone screenshot above).
After the update is finished, iTunes will notifying you that “Your iPhone has been updated!” and the iPhone will restart. Upon restarting your iPhone screen will look similar to the screen shown above as it works it’s way through applying the final portions of the firmware update.
Before the iPhone is done applying the final touches of the update, you’ll notice that iTunes has updated itself to display this scary screen:
While your iPhone screen looks like this:
DO NOT PANIC, this is expected. We just installed an official Apple firmware, so the phone has become un-jail-broken and re-locked it’s baseband. Our next step of the guide will open this stuff back up.
Jailbreaking and Carrier Unlocking the iPhone
Ok, the phone is all updated with an official firmware now, which means it’s locked down. We want to run redsn0w now to open that sucker back up, so let’s do that.
NOTE: Close iTunes at this point – I believe redsn0w will automatically close it for you, but just in case, go ahead and close it.
Launch the redsn0w executable now and on the first screen, click “Browse” to browse for the 3.1.2 firmware we just applied via iTunes (filename is “iPhone1,1_3.1.2_7D11_Restore.ipsw”):
Then select “iPhone1,1_3.1.2_7D11_Restore.ipsw” file and click Open:
Next redsn0w will confirm the IPSW file for you and enable the Next button for you to click:
For a few seconds redsn0w will “patch” the official Apple IPSW firmware file for you like this:
When it is done, redsn0w will prompt you for the steps you would like it to perform on your iPhone for you:
We strongly recommend installing Cydia and you need to check the Unlock step if you are on an unofficial iPhone GSM network like T-Mobile in the United States.
After you are done making your selection, hit Next and redsn0w will prompt you for the two 3.9 and 4.6 bootloader files we downloaded at the beginning of the guide. Go ahead and select them and hit the Next button when ready:
NOTE: We are getting ready to put the phone into “DFU” mode to pull the updates from redsn0w, please be careful to follow the instructions on redsn0w’s screen as they are time-based. For example, holding a particular button for 5 seconds and so on. Don’t freak out if you don’t get the timing right, you can always restart. Just be aware that this odd set of time-based instructions are coming soon.
On the next screen of redsn0w it will instruct you to make sure your iPhone is attached to your computer and oddly enough TURNED OFF:
The reason for this is because we need to put the phone into the Device Firmware Upgrade (DFU) mode which starts with having the phone off.
So at this point, if you have been following this guide line-by-line, you can do this by leaving your iPhone in it’s doc, but holding down the power button until you get the “Slide to power off” prompt and then power off your iPhone:
Wait for your iPhone to completely power off (don’t just wait for the da-DUM Windows USB-disconnect sound) and then hit Next on the redsn0w interface.
HEADS UP: Just to get you ready for what you are about to see, the redsn0w screen will show you the following timed prompts:
What it will want you to do is press the Power (top right corner) and Home (bottom face center) buttons in the following order is:
- Hold down the Power button for 2 secs (normal iPhone power-on)
- KEEP HOLDING the power button and ALSO PRESS the Home button together (the circular face button at the bottom center of the phone… the one you press all the time) for 9 seconds total (both buttons held down together)
- RELEASE the Power button but KEEP HOLDING the Home button for 30 seconds.
Typically at some point before the final 30 seconds is up, usually around 15 seconds for me, you’ll hear the Windows “ba-BUM” USB connection sound and notice the iPhone start doing stuff; this means it is in DFU mode and you can let go of all the buttons.
What happens next is that redsn0w will connect to your iPhone and upload the modified files directly to your iPhone for processing:
At which point redsn0w is done and will notify you that “The rest of the processing occurs on your phone”, you can simply click the Finish button to close it.
Meanwhile, on your iPhone, it will notify you that it’s downloading Jailbreak data:
And then begin patching the kernel and doing other fancy stuff to the phone to Jailbreak and unlock it:
After this process is done, the iPhone will restart itself, booting directly into BootNeuter 2.1 which looks something like this:
and you’ll notice the screen updating itself, changing settings and little tooltip popups saying stuff like “Running in automatic mode!”. Just let it finish working and it will eventually reboot your iPhone for you.
Once rebooted, your 2G iPhone will be fully upgraded to the 3.1.2 firmware!
The last step is to load iTunes back up and Sync your iPhone with it; restoring any missing apps or media. Once that is done, you can go outside and play!
EXTRA: Enabling MMS (Sending Picture-Texts)
You may have noticed on your original 2G iPhone (EDGE-only) that Apple has disabled the ability to send MMS messages, or text messages with pictures. They enabled it on the 3G iPhone, 3GS and iPhone 4, but not on our poor original iPhone.
Fortunately it’s pretty easy to get it working, you just need to install the right software from Cydia and have the right cellular data network settings handy to get it working.
We’ve put together a “How to get MMS working on a 2G iPhone” guide for you to cover that. The guide includes settings for T-Mobile here in the US, otherwise you will need to Google for your appropriate network settings if you are not on T-Mobile, but the rest of the guide will at least get the functionality enabled for you until you get those settings.
If you run into any snags with this guide, as usual please leave comments for us and we’ll update the guide as we get feedback, corrections, updates and so on.
Thanks for reading!