iPhone Is it possible to download various iOS install files?

Texas_Toast

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Feb 6, 2016
1,280
201
Texas
On my Mac, I can go to the App Store and - with the proper link - download a full version of a given macOS version (e.g. Sierra, Mojave, etc).

Is there a way to do this with iOS?

Right now I think my iPhone 6S Plus has iOS 10.x and ideally I would like to both make a perfect "clone" of my phone from it's original state when I bought it, and also put a copy of the factory iOS into my library, so as I upgrade to newer iOS's and start to learn how to configure and use my iPhone, I will always have a way to roll things back to an earlier (or later) point in time.

Also, just like people like to do on Macs, by having a library of different iOS's, I would be able to set up different environments on my iPhone.

Thanks.
 

C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
48,427
17,086
You can download them if you can find them, but you can't install them, as they aren't being signed anymore, so all they would do is take up space.
That's basically it. The full installers can be downloaded but only those that are signed by Apple -- which generally correspond to the latest version supported by the device -- can be installed.
 

Texas_Toast

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Feb 6, 2016
1,280
201
Texas
You can download them if you can find them, but you can't install them, as they aren't being signed anymore, so all they would do is take up space.
What do you mean by "signed anymore"?

You make it sound as if iOS versions "expire" like milk?! :)
- - Post merged: - -

That's basically it. The full installers can be downloaded but only those that are signed by Apple -- which generally correspond to the latest version supported by the device -- can be installed.
If I downloaded the full installer of a current version of iOS, then at some later date could I install it and have it work? (Much like IF I had the full version of the Mountain Lion installer, and IF I had Mac hardware that supported it, THEN I could install/re-install Mountain Lion all day long on my compatable Macintosh.)

Not sure about the mobile world, but often people do NOT want the "latest and greatest" macOS version, PLUS they may need to install an older version in order to recover their computers and get things back to where they were.

In my mind, that same logic seems to folow for smatphones, but who knows?!
 

boxermansr

macrumors 6502a
Feb 11, 2011
672
213
El Paso, TX
What do you mean by "signed anymore"?

You make it sound as if iOS versions "expire" like milk?! :)
If Apple is no longer validating the ability to install an older version it will not install, it checks in with Apple to verify if it’s still being SIGNED to authorize it to proceed with the install, if it isn’t it won’t install. They stop “signing” previous versions when newer ones come out - such as 13.5 no longer being signed since 13.5.1 came out, 13.5 can no longer be installed.
 

Texas_Toast

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Feb 6, 2016
1,280
201
Texas
If Apple is no longer validating the ability to install an older version it will not install, it checks in with Apple to verify if it’s still being SIGNED to authorize it to proceed with the install, if it isn’t it won’t install. They stop “signing” previous versions when newer ones come out - such as 13.5 no longer being signed since 13.5.1 came out, 13.5 can no longer be installed.
So if I am absolutely in love with iOS v10.0, then I better not touch (or lose) my iPhone, eh?
 

Texas_Toast

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Feb 6, 2016
1,280
201
Texas
Or I could just buy a new iPhone whenever there is a new iOS?! (I'm sure Tim would approve!) ;)

So upgrading/not upgrading the OS on Macs is a big deal. And there are lots of people like me that consciously decide NOT to upgrade anytime soon.

What about on iOS?

Are there any pros to NOT upgrading?

Is is that just a bad idea?


Personally, I hate change - especially in IT. And the truth of the matter is that most change is driven by trying to generate new income and not necessarily helping users.

The best MS Office - and especially MS Excel - ever was was back in the early 2000s. Microsoft never improved on it after that, and only fubared one of the best applications ever written.
 

C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
48,427
17,086
Or I could just buy a new iPhone whenever there is a new iOS?! (I'm sure Tim would approve!) ;)

So upgrading/not upgrading the OS on Macs is a big deal. And there are lots of people like me that consciously decide NOT to upgrade anytime soon.

What about on iOS?

Are there any pros to NOT upgrading?

Is is that just a bad idea?


Personally, I hate change - especially in IT. And the truth of the matter is that most change is driven by trying to generate new income and not necessarily helping users.

The best MS Office - and especially MS Excel - ever was was back in the early 2000s. Microsoft never improved on it after that, and only fubared one of the best applications ever written.
It's down to personal choice, more or less. Most people end up upgrading/updating to stay up to date with security, bug fixes, and to get the latest features. Some end up taking steps to avoid it for one reason or another.

From app point of view, at some point various apps might not work well or might no longer get updates that work with older versions of iOS, so that's part of the consideration for some.
 

Texas_Toast

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Feb 6, 2016
1,280
201
Texas
It's down to personal choice, more or less. Most people end up upgrading/updating to stay up to date with security, bug fixes, and to get the latest features. Some end up taking steps to avoid it for one reason or another.

From app point of view, at some point various apps might not work well or might no longer get updates that work with older versions of iOS, so that's part of the consideration for some.
And since you can't install a "clone" of your old iOS, if the latest iOS breaks your go-to apps, then I guess you are screwed, right?

Also, what do you do if you are, say, an app developer (or even a website developer) and you need to test to see if your app/website works on different versions of iOS?

On a Mac it would be relatively easy, but I don't see how you'd do it for iOS versions?
 

C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
48,427
17,086
And since you can't install a "clone" of your old iOS, if the latest iOS breaks your go-to apps, then I guess you are screwed, right?

Also, what do you do if you are, say, an app developer (or even a website developer) and you need to test to see if your app/website works on different versions of iOS?

On a Mac it would be relatively easy, but I don't see how you'd do it for iOS versions?
Developers often have access to devices they have on different versions of iOS and/or can use simulators as part of their development.

As far as a new version breaking something for an app, that can happen and then it's up to the app developer to release an update that addresses the issue. Sometimes app developers release updates to their apps that introduce an issue somewhere, and then it's similarly up to them to release another update to fix the issue.
 

Texas_Toast

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Feb 6, 2016
1,280
201
Texas
Developers often have access to devices they have on different versions of iOS and/or can use simulators as part of their development.

As far as a new version breaking something for an app, that can happen and then it's up to the app developer to release an update that addresses the issue. Sometimes app developers release updates to their apps that introduce an issue somewhere, and then it's similarly up to them to release another update to fix the issue.
There certainly seems to be less control in the mobile space...
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.