Updating an old 'illegal' iPhone, can it be done without bricking it?


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 1, 2009

Let me start from the beginning.
I got the iPhone when it first came out, so the 2g I think it's called, it has a stainless steel back and is quite thick etc.
Anyways, I purchased mine from a source outside of o2 and it updated fine until apple caught on to the fact that people had these 'illegal' iphone's and when you updated through itunes it locked you out of your phone, this happened to me and I managed to get it fixed by the person I bought it from. It's currently on version: 1.1.3
I want to update to the new version so I can buy apps and etc.

My question is, now that you can buy the iphone on pay as you, sim free and contract. Will I be able to update it without itunes locking me out? Or will itunes still recognise that my phone is illegal? Or has apple stopped itunes scanning your phone to find this out now because you can purchase the iPhone in so many different ways it would be impossible for it to be able to tell the difference.

Any help or people who have done similar, would be great. Don't want to do it without being sure or I'll no longer have a phone as it is my only one.
Thank you, Emma.


macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2009
Connecticut, USA
As I said in your thread in the tips and troubleshooting forum, you will probably need to jailbreak and unlock your phone after upgrading. You can read all about the process in the sticky thread labeled 'Pwnage Guide' above.

For future reference, cross-posting is discouraged.


Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
Once you use Pwnage tool to unlock it with anything >2.0, you should also just be able to update it willy-nilly directly from iTunes without having to use Pwnage again. (Not true if you use QuickPwn, I think, or Redsn0w or the like; not sure whether Blackra1n's method of unlocking stays unlocked or not).

Also, the threads are now merged. :)
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