5s: what are the exact steps for clean upgrade to 8.1

Discussion in 'iOS 8' started by MEMSMaster, Oct 30, 2014.

  1. MEMSMaster macrumors member

    Oct 12, 2013
    I have a 5s 16 GB currently on 7.1.2 that I plan to upgrade to 8.1 using the full clean method. Despite a lot of references to this method I haven't been able to find a single consistent list of exactly what the steps in the "clean" method are.

    This is what I have so far. I would appreciate the review, comment, and improvement by knowledgeable MR forum readers
    • Delete unwanted pictures and music
    • Upgrade iTunes to latest version
    • Back up phone via iTunes
    • Back up phone 2nd time via iTunes using encryption password (this is the backup that will be restored)
    • Disconnect phone from iTunes
    • Settings / Genera l /Reset / Erase All Content and Settings
    • Reattach to iTunes
    • At this point, will iTunes suggest upgrading to 8.1?
    • Restore from encrypted backup

    Two things I am not clear on:
    • At what point is the actual upgrade to 8.1 done?
    • Presumably 8.1 can import an encrypted backup from 7.1.2 and convert it as needed?
    Any advice would be appreciated!
  2. dekadent macrumors member


    Sep 30, 2009
    Stockholm, Sweden
    A "full clean" install means to set up the phone as new and NOT restore any kind of backup.

    Whether this is the best approach or not is constantly debated in these forums. I personally always do this for every major release (X.Y) but OTA upgrade for every minor release (X.Y.Z).
  3. Sirious macrumors 65816


    Jan 2, 2013
    United Kingdom
    Just connect to iTunes and click 'Restore'. This will download the latest firmware and install it to your iPhone.
  4. Tyler23 macrumors 603


    Dec 2, 2010
    Atlanta, GA
    Where the heck did you get all of these steps?

    1) If you want to do a "clean install," that means not restoring from a backup.

    2) To do a clean install, plug your phone into your computer, open iTunes, go to your Phone, and click "Restore." This will download 8.1, wipe your phone, and install the fresh 8.1 software on your phone. After this, you would choose to Set Up as New (as opposed to restoring from a backup).
  5. MEMSMaster thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 12, 2013
    Thanks everyone for the thoughtful and polite responses.

    As to what I am attempting to document and why: some percentage of people who upgrade previous generation devices to iOS 8.x report problems both minor and serious. Not all, not a majority perhaps, but a significant number. Here's a typical thread discussing that - http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1812185 - although there are many more here and at other sites.

    For me it doesn't matter so much; I can take care of any problem I encounter. But when I upgrade family members' devices I need them to work well and not start having bizarre quirks. When problems with iOS upgrades are reported in enthusiast forums generally the first response is "you shouda done a full clean upgrade" [see below on terminology]. As noted above, it is far from clear if this actually does anything.

    However, I also have a substantial amount of uncontrollable "Other" space usage on my and my families' devices, I'd like to have as much as that as possible cleaned up, and I don't see any way any storage system can clear space without significant free space to work with. Every electronic and computing device I have worked with since, well, let's say a long time ago has had a procedure for fully clearing the system and putting it into a state with all previous settings and data restored in an optimal configuration. That's what I'm after with the 5s - IF it is possible.

    Terminology: displeasure has been expressed with the terminology I used for a full-wipe-and-restore upgrade. What terminology do you recommend and why?

    Steps: why so many steps? Advice to "do process X" is often tossed out on message boards, but no definitive list of steps is provided leaving the advice-ee adrift. What specific steps do you recommend and why?

    Use iTunes; that will clean and restore: Is that correct? Documented anywhere? Known examples where using the iTunes upgrade method cleaned up "Other"?

    Why do the wipe step: I've worked with about 837 different types of storage devices over the years and the manufacturer's full wipe is the only way I have ever seen to know you've cleaned everything. However I've never worked with a system as opaque as the iPhone, so perhaps this isn't necessary or isn't possible. References to detailed discussion and documentation?

    What procedure do you recommend and why?

    Thanks everyone! :)
  6. Bacong macrumors 68020


    Mar 7, 2009
    Westland, Michigan
    just put the phone into DFU mode and restore in iTunes.

    restoring from a backup is never a "clean install"

    in fact, deleting everything and restoring from a backup just puts you where you were before. It does nothing to help you. What people mean when they say a clean install, or restore, or "clean upgrade" is to completely erase the phone and start as new.
  7. Agent-P macrumors 68030


    Dec 5, 2009
    The Tri-State Area
    As others have said, a clean upgrade would be to erase everything and start over. However they're are steps you can take to avoid having to start completely from scratch:

    1. Transfer your photos from the iPhone to the computer manually.

    2. Go to Settings > iCloud and turn on all the switches to sync contacts, reminders, etc.

    3. Plug into iTunes and go to File > Devices > Transfer Purchases

    4. Click the "Restore iPhone" button in iTunes.

    5. Wait for the software download and update to compete.

    6. Go through the setup on the iPhone and choose "Set Up As New"

    7. Sign into iCloud to recover the information you enabled in step 2.

    8. Sync your apps and music back from iTunes.

    Edit: I would suggest before starting these steps make a full backup just in case after you're done you realise you forgot to save something important that isn't included in these steps.
  8. MEMSMaster thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 12, 2013
    How does that fit with the the Apple Support page "Use iTunes to restore your iOS device to factory settings" ( http://support.apple.com/en-us/ht1414 )? In Step 4 on that page it says "...You can set up your device as new or using a previous backup."

    From a systems perspective, given that it is possible to restore a backup onto a new phone (which I how I upgraded my 4S to 5s) the restore from backup would have to fully rewrite the restored data onto the new device; the data structures and storage layout would not be the same.
  9. MEMSMaster thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 12, 2013
  10. C DM macrumors Sandy Bridge

    Oct 17, 2011
    To be fair there are plenty of people who don't get even the simplest things out there. That's not necessarily to imply something in this particular case, but just to make an observation.
  11. alksion macrumors 68000


    Sep 10, 2010
    Los Angeles County
    I always perform clean installs on major OS releases for both iOS and OSX. Many of the naysayers argue this isn't needed anymore, however, my systems run flawlessly using this method.
  12. chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    ...and mine run flawlessly without bothering to clean install.
  13. alksion macrumors 68000


    Sep 10, 2010
    Los Angeles County
    Good for you. Just take a look at the problems on these forums. A clean install has often corrected or fixed many things people were experiencing.

    If you can continue to install OS X over OS X and so on without any problems, that's awesome! I prefer a clean slate and just reinstating my settings once finished. To each their own.

    On a sidenote, I finally upgraded my iPad Air to iOS 8.2 from 7.1.2 and have experienced numerous problems even on a clean install. So it's not always perfect. At least I know that iOS 8 is still a mess for the iPad and it's not something I'm doing incorrect. Really upset I updated now.

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