The JBnator Diaries – Putting your iDevice back in jail!


Hey you, happy jailbreakers! Or, if you’re reading this, probably, not very happy ones. Everybody knows I’m a stern advocate of releasing your Jesus phone from the bonds that Apple enforces upon him. Why else would I be writing this column? At the same time I respect that some users may decide to revert their jailbroken phone back to its original state, for one reason or another. Be it crashes, sluggishness or even just the need to turn the phone in to Apple Care for some hardware defect, this can happen to anyone. So today I’m gonna guide you through this simple process.

Folks, I don’t know what drove you to undoing blackra1n (or any other tool you chose for jailbreaking), but there are two ways of going about it. The cleanest way would be to set the iPhone up as a new device after restoring it to its virgin state. Mind, you’ll lose all of your app and game data that way. You won’t lose any apps, music, videos or anything else synced through iTunes to external sources.

The other way is to restore of a backup after virginising your iDevice. Mind, this may lead to unforeseen consequences as it may restore some of the files from Jailbroken software. But on the other hand – it will keep all of your iPhone data intact.

Our toolbox for today:

  • iPhone 2G/3G/3GS or iPod Touch 1G/2G/3G already jailbroken
  • Windows or Mac OS personal computer with the latest version of iTunes
  • iPhone Folders – download latest version at the author’s site
  • iPhone apps – download off Cydia:
    • afc2add
  • The original Apple OS for your specific device – you can download it using iTunes or from the links below for version 3.1.2:

The process is quite simple, but if you’ve decided to restore from a backup, I’ll give a few tips on the most obvious places to clean up.

Cleanup phase:

  1. Open iPhone Folders and navigate to \var\mobile\Library (this folder is the one backupped by iTunes)
  2. Now it’s time to clean the baby (if you want to keep the opportunity to restore the preferences later – instead of simply deleting, move the data to the PC). The folders to remove are:
    1. AppBackup
    2. QuickBoard
    3. RandomRing
    4. Reminder
    5. SBSettings
    6. That’s it!

Backup phase (just in case everyone should do it!):

  1. Run iTunes
  2. Right click on your iDevice and select Transfer Purchases
  3. Right click on your iDevice and select Sync
  4. Right click on your iDevice and select Back Up

Ok, we’re all set. Are you completely sure you want to go back to the life of Apple dictatorship?

Restore phase:

  1. Run iTunes, hold shift and click restore and browse to the OS file.This will take quite some time, so you can safely go and make yourself a spot of tea.
  2. After the process is over, you have a virgin iDevice running the latest OS version (3.1.2 in our case)
  3. When you connect to iTunes for the first time you’ll be given the opportunity to either set up as a new device or restore from a backup. It’s up to you what to choose, remember my warnings beforehand.

Congratulations, now you have a virgin iDevice! Again!

And if you decide to do the right thing and jailbreak again – feel free to use my original guide.

Our Jailbreak column returns every week for your reference.

A project manager in a major telecommunications supplier, an iPhone junkie and lately - a TMA editor. Love long walks on the beach and my wife, who is the most beautiful girl on the face of this planet. You can also follow me on twitter for all things iPhone and project management (and some personal stuff as well):

Next ArticleB.I.T.S Pinball in Review - Play With Blue Bear's Bouncing Red Balls!