Friday, June 29, 2012

Activate problem 5.1.1, Hacktivate 5.1.1 and Unbrick iphones on 5.1.1

Finally a working solution I have found to the dreaded problem with updating to 5.1.1 and having activation errors.
A lot of people have had same issues ¨as I have had¨ with upgrading my 3gs and other devices to 5.1.1 specially o2 uk and other US carriers, where the activation fails either with no sim card message or server temporarily not available.
This solution works even if you havent updated baseband to 06.15.00, but normally this is what is causing the problem. So please follow these steps as I am sure we can unbrick your iphone and reactivate without any problems.

  • Download redsn0w 0.9.14b1 from the iphone dev-team (click on links bellow)

redsn0w 0.9.14b1 (osx)
redsn0w 0.9.14b1 (windows)

  • Make sure your non-activated iphone is turned off properly by sliding to power off the phone
  • Open redsnow on your computer and and click on Extras and choose Pwend DFU, follow the instructions there to get your iphone into DFU mode.
  • Then click on Select IPSW (where you will choose the 5.1.1 firmware you have installed on the iphone)   This can be located on a mac in: /Users/user/Library/iTunes/iPhone Software Updates And in windows its normally located in: \Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPhone Software Updates
  • Once you have chosen the 5.1.1 IPSW you will get a message like this:

  • If you have an iphone 3gs you will get this message afterwards (please make sure you choose correctly if you have the newer fixed bootrom or not, read the instructions):

  • Once you have clicked yes or no, click back to the first screen and click on jailbreak. Dont worry if you are thinking we are jailbreaking the iphone, if you want to you can, by choosing install cydia aswell as Downgrade from iPad Baseband, but this guide is to downgrade you iphone firmware so you can have authentic baseband that comes with 5.1.1, which is the main cause we cannot activate our iphones
  • The most important thing to do now is to select Downgrade from iPad Baseband which will take off our iPad baseband if we ever used it before when we were on and older firmware. The pineapple will eventually appear saying downloading baseband and flashing baseband. This process can take a long time and will not state anything other than this on the screen. Dont worry it wont take longer than 10 minutes. just leave it until it turns off automatically and reboots with apple logo.

  • Once the iphone reboots with the apple logo, this is a good indication that the baseband has been taken off and the original 5.1.1 baseband is installed.

  • Finally now you should be back at welcome/activation screen, please have your sim card installed and activate connecting to itunes or over wifi. Please remember if you have the original sim card that came with the phone or similar but same carrier, insert it and activate using this one. 
If by any means this has not worked, dont worry it has happened to me once, just put your phone in DFU mode and restore the firmware using itunes on the computer, this will correctly install 5.1.1 again on your iphone with the correct baseband. The most important thing here is that we have taken off ipad baseband, and now it will installe correctly with out any other baseband except for the one with 5.1.1 ipsw.

This has been my first guide/blog I have made in years, so please if this information has been of any help, leave a comment and support me by donation if you would like ;)

Best wishes to all of you!!


  1. Worked like a charm for my 3GS. Thanks!

    1. Great! Im happy it has worked for you also!

  2. Didn't do anything after clicking downgrade - no pineapple just apple logo and registration screen

  3. i found the above way not to work after attempting 6 or so times. I did however get it to work another way. If you have SHSH blobs it helps but you can do without as well.

    First downgrade your device but putting into DFU and restoring to older firmware. For me, i have SHSH for 4.3.3, but you can do 4.1 since Apple is still signing this firmware. Once on older firmware, open Redsnow 0.9.14b(1or2) click extras, then even more, then clear cache. Go back and select ipsw (using the firmware you just restored to. Click yes or no to having a newer or older bootrom 3GS. Go back to first screen and click jailbreak. Uncheck everything but downgrade from ipad baseband, then proceed. This was what did it for me. Once i had the ipad baseband removed, i was able to update to 5.1.1 and activate the phone for normal use. If you want to jailbreak after update, just open redsnow again, click jailbreak and install cydia. Good luck hope it works for you.

    My Phone: iphone 3gs 5.1.1 (old bootrom)

  4. THANK YOU SO MUCH! i have been through absolute hell trying to get this to work because i know nothing about this stuff but your advice saved me! thanks again. by the way im using 3gs locked to 02 uk on 5.1.1 incase anyone needs proof it works

  5. Worked 1st time, thank you! was banging my head against the wall with this one and there was so much confusing advice (Pwnage this blobs that) out there for a complete novice like me but this was simply but intellectually explained - cracking advice.

  6. Im happy it has worked for you all!

    Good luck to everyone

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