Using JailbreakMe to JailBreak iPhone & Other iOS Devices

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Using JailbreakMe to JailBreak iPhone & Other iOS Devices

person holding iphone in front of laptop
John Lamb/Photographer's Choice RF/Getty Images

UPDATE July 2011: Thanks to reader Andrew for pointing out that Jailbreakme.com has been updated with a new jailbreak.

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While jailbreaking the iPhone used to be a somewhat complex process that required solid technical skills, a website called JailbreakMe.com has taken advantage of a security hole in iOS 4 to make jailbreaking very simple.

It's important to know that Apple may close the security holes that JailbreakMe.com uses at any time. The process detailed in this tutorial works as of July 2011, but if you're reading it after that, Apple may have fixed the security hole. That said, Apple has fixed a number of holes and JailbreakMe.com has found new ones, so it's possible that new methods will appear even as old ones end.

Jailbreaking, of course, means that you'll be able to install non-Apple approved apps on your iOS device. You can do this via the Cydia app store, which is installed as part of JailbreakMe.com's process, or Installer.app/AppTap.

It's important to remember, of course, that by installing apps that you get anywhere other than Apple's App Store, you may be exposing yourself to malicious code or other trouble that Apple may not help you get out of.

To use JailbreakMe.com, you'll need an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad running iOS 4.3.3 (to jailbreak iOS 3.2 or 4.0.1, try www.jailbreakme.com/star/. If you want to be able to jailbreak your device, don't upgrade beyond these OS versions.

To begin the jailbreaking process, point your device's browser to http://www.jailbreakme.com.

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Visit JailbreakMe.com

using JailbreakMe to jailbreak iphone, step 1

When JailbreakMe.com loads in your browser, you'll see an onscreen message describing what jailbreaking is. Your options including learning more by tapping on the More Information button or beginning the jailbreak process.

To do that, tap the Free button under the Cydia icon. Just like with an App Store button, the button will then change to read Install. Tap that and you'll have started jailbreaking your device.

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Software Download

using JailbreakMe to jailbreak iphone, step 2

Once you've tapped the Install button, you'll be taken back to the home screen of your device, just like you're installing an app from the App Store. In this case, though, the app that is being installed is Cydia, the alternative app store.

Over WiFi, this should take a few seconds. Over 3G, it will take a little longer.

Look for the Cydia icon. When you see it and can click it, your device is jailbroken. Believe it or not, it's that easy!

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Start Using Cydia

using JailbreakMe to jailbreak iphone, step 4

Well, that was easy, wasn't it? With the Cydia app store installed on your device, you can now use apps from it that along with Apple's App Store. Remember, though, it's not vetted in the same way as the App Store, so there's some risk in using it.

To remove the jailbreak, connect your device to your computer and then restore it to factory settings and restore your data from a backup.