iPhone 4.1 Upgrade: Retain Original Baseband Unlock

Earlier this morning Apple released the promised iPhone 4.1 software update that brings not only new features such as HDR photography and Game Center but also promises to fix — among others — the Bluetooth connection bug we previously exposed.

Naturally, many iPhone owners are eager to upgrade to 4.1 as soon as possible. If you rely on a jailbroken or unlocked iPhone 4, however, you absolutely must hold off the upgrade until the iPhone Dev Team releases new tools to keep the jailbreak/unlock alive beyond 4.0.2.

If you can live without a jailbroken/unlocked iPhone 4 for the time being, however, there’s now a safe way to upgrade to 4.1 thanks to @notcom of TinyUmbrella.

IMPORTANT: The following tutorial will upgrade your iPhone 4 to iOS 4.1 while preserving your current (unlockable) baseband. Your iPhone will not be jail-broken, however, as there currently is no jailbreak for 4.1 You can only revert back to 4.0.1 or earlier (to jailbreak and unlock your iPhone) if you’ve previously saved your SHSH Blobs for 4.0.1 or earlier! If you’re not sure what this means, then PLEASE stay away from this tutorial! You’ve been warned!

Quick 4.1 Firmware/Baseband Backstory

If you’ve previously saved your SHSH Blobs with TinyUmbrella you’ll always be able to downgrade your iPhone 4 to an earlier firmware version.

For example: if you saved the SHSH Blobs for 4.0.1 you could always use TinyUmbrella’s TSS service to downgrade back to that version even after you upgraded to 4.1 through iTunes. Currently you can NOT downgrade your iPhone’s baseband, however.

So even though you could always revert back to software 4.0.1 (if you’ve got the blobs that is), there’s currently no way back to iPhone 4′s original 01.59.00 modem firmware (the baseband). And currently, 01.59.00 is the only baseband for iPhone 4 that works with the UltraSn0w unlock. iPhone 4.1 will upgrade your baseband to version 2.10.04 which, as of this moment, doesn’t (and may never) work with any unlock.

Hence, if you care about the unlock, it’s best to stay away from 4.1 for the time being. If you’re eager to play with 4.1, however, and don’t need the unlock right now, but simply would like to keep your options open for the future (until there’s an official jailbreak for 4.1, for example), TinyUmbrella 4.1.3 will help you upgrade your firmware without touching the baseband!

Upgrading to 4.1 While Retaining Original Baseband

WARNING: proceed on your own risk. Do not attempt if you’ve not saved your SHSH Blobs and may want to downgrade back to 4.0.1 or earlier!

WARNING #2: even if you have saved your SHSH Blobs, proceed on your own risk! Don’t do this if you ABSOLUTELY must rely on the iPhone 4 unlock!

1) Download TinyUmbrella 4.1.3

2) Close iTunes

3) Start TinyUmbrella 4.1.3

4) Start the TTS Server

5) Make SURE TinyUmbrella doesn’t report any errors! (If TU reports ANY errors it may not protect you from a baseband upgrade. In that case do NOT proceed!)

6) Start iTunes and restore to iOS 4.1. (Important: You must restore, not update!)

7) Accept the iOS 4.1 Update.

8 ) Cross your fingers. Hold your breath.

9) After the update is complete, don’t panic if iTunes shows the following error messages: “The iPhone could not be restored. An unknown error occurred (10044).” and “iTunes has detected an iPhone in recovery mode. You must restore this iPhone before it can be used with iTunes.” Simply press “OK” on each and proceed to the next step.

10) Return to TinyUmbrella and select “kick device out of recovery”.

11) Your iPhone should now restart and be recognized by iTunes. If everything went well your iPhone 4 is now running iOS 4.1 with baseband 01.59.00. Congratulations!

Keep in mind that you currently won’t be able to jailbreak (and therefore unlock) your iPhone 4 on iOS 4.1, even though, you preserved the original baseband.

If, at any point, you’d like to return to iOS 4.0.1 or 4.0.2, in order to jailbreak or unlock your iPhone 4, simply follow the steps posted here.

And, please remember to proceed on your own risk!

iPhone 4.1 Upgrade: Retain Original Baseband Unlock [Tutorial] | The Apple Press.

I have heard a few folks voice concerns about how they can downgrade their 2.x baseband to 1.59.00 on iPhone4. Here are the basic steps:

  • Close TinyUmbrella (if open)
  • Close iTunes (if open)
  • Remove ALL lines in your hosts file that contain gs.apple.com
  • Windows: Start -> cmd -> ipconfig /flushdns
  • Mac: Terminal -> dscacheutil -flushcache
  • Start iTunes
  • Restore (NOT UPDATE) Stock 4.0.2 iPhone 4 – 4.0.2 Download

Note that this will only work while Apple is signing 4.0.2 SHSH requests. This is due to the way Apple now updates/restores Baseband Firmware for the iPhone 4 different from the way it did to prior devices. Lucky us…

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