Monthly Archive for August, 2007

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Analysis of iPhone firmware 1.0.2 shows not much room for anything new

Nate True has analyzed the files changed by the iPhone 1.0.2 firmware update, and it doesn’t look like there is really any room for new features given that it’s just over 3MB. A few files got a little bigger, the kernel actually got smaller, and they seemed to do a little cleanup. Not too surprising then that few improvements or bug fixes have been observed, and it seems likely that at least a few of those were wishful thinking.

How to Unlock an iPhone (hardware style)

Update: There is now a GUI application for unlocking the iPhone that simplifies things greatly.

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This morning, GeoHot has posted a step by step tutorial about how to unlock an iPhone for use on a non-AT&T GSM carrier (ie T-mobile in the US, and pretty much every European carrier via the hardware method he reported on a few days ago. The whole thing is documented step by step in his blog, and in this YouTube Video.

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Geo says this is his iPhone hacking swan song, since he is heading off to college in a couple of days.

It’s now up to others to simplify and clarify how to perform the hardware hack, and, ultimately, to come up with a software-only method for doing the unlock.

In the meantime, I’m sure there are finally people offering to unlock iPhones for a small fee who can actually deliver, now that other people have done the pioneering work.

He is actioning off the unlocked iPhone he used in the video. The price is already up over $1,500

Good luck folks, I look forward to the software unlock.

Update: There is now a GUI application for unlocking the iPhone that simplifies things greatly.

iBrickr: Easy Windows Installer for 3rd Party iPhone Apps

Mac users have had easy to use tools for installing iPhone mods and 3rd party apps like iFuntastic for a while now, while Windows users have had to work through a series of steps using a collection of tools. All that has changed now, thanks to Nate True, who recently released the amusingly named iBrickr, which provides easy iPhone ringtone / app management for Windows users.

He also maintains a library of 3rd party iPhone apps packaged for easy installation.

Full iPhone Unlock, but only via a hardware trick for now

Update: There is now a GUI application for unlocking the iPhone that simplifies things greatly.

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Geohot and the other iPhone hackers have done it! They’ve unlocked the iPhone so it can be used on any GSM network without resorting to a chimerical hacked SIM card.

That’s the good news. The bad news? You have to take the phone apart and do some very delicate work to hook up special gizmos in order to perform the unlock. Nevertheless, this is important progress and will likely help the efforts to come up with a software-only unlock.

They are keeping the method secret for now, so someone doesn’t exploit their work before they can claim the ultimate prize themselves.

Finding JTAG on the iPhone
Yes thats right, we have an unlocked iPhone. The hardware is only used to unlock the iPhone, and can be removed after it’s unlocked. Thanks to gray, iProof, geohot, dinopio, lazyc0der, and an anonymous contributor for making this possible. Thanks also to everyone who donated and stuck with us in #iphone.unlock. Our group has agreed to release the method in one week. The current method involves taking apart your phone and doing some complicated soldering, with a high probablity of a bricked phone. Although after the phone is unlocked all the hardware can be removed. We hope to find a software unlock very soon. So in one week exactly from this blog post(thats less than the time it takes to ship a turbosim) we will release simple step by step instructions for unlocking, probably not even involving hardware. Sorry about the wait, but I assure you it will be worth it.

YouTube Preview Image

Update: There is now a GUI application for unlocking the iPhone that simplifies things greatly.

What’s new in iPhone Update 1.0.2?

Apple has just pushed out the second update (1.0.2) for the iPhone. Once again, they are only saying it fixes bugs.

People who have hacked their iPhone are already reporting issues, but again, it sounds like Apple has basically left the modders alone. Most of the problems can be solved by going in and is to go in and installing the hacks again. Some hacks will need to be updated, but someone has already come up with a fix for the Installer.app.

Update 8/22/07: Yesterday Nate True posted an analysis of the files changed by the update. The bottom line is that there isn’t much room for feature improvements or bug fixes. I’ve added notes below in cases where the observations seem to be wishful thinking because no relevant files were touched.

Other reports follow:

  • More and more people are reporting that the cellular signal seems more stable. Whether this is cosmetic, or actually represents an improvement in the way it interfaces with the cellular network is unclear. eas-This is probably a phantom, there were no changes in any files related to the cellular radio or status display.
  • Only 3.7MB, which makes it almost half as small as the last one. Doesn’t leave a lot of room for them to sneak in new features
  • You can now skip to the next chapter in movie file Apparently this worked before.
  • A few people think the bottom button-bar in Safari in landscape mode is shorter. eas-another phantom, no files related to Safari were changed
  • “Safari is snappier” but this may just be a result of rebooting the iPhone as part of the upgrade process. eas-as above, no safari changes, however, it is imaginable that changes to the kernel could have an impact here.
  • Safari reportedly allows scrolling on long pages now, even when there is a lot of the page left to load. eas- Another likely phantom, no changes to Safari or webkit, though it seems plausible that improvements to I/O or task scheduling or similar in the Kernel could have an impact here
  • Still no flash.
  • Faster WiFi performance. Some people are reporting 50% better speeds according the the speedtests they’ve tried. eas-it is not inconceivable that kernel changes could improve networking performance.
  • The music player still crashes sometimes while browsing the web with Safari
  • The iAsign activation hack still works
  • iFuntastic 2.5 works just fine (if you are on a frikin mac)
  • Engadget had a major freakout with their modded iPhone that broke their iPhone backup.
  • People who used iPhoneRingtoneMaker to add custom ringtones report that they ringtones are still there after the update, and that they did not have to do a full restore.
  • iPhone remembers password on secondary e-mail accounts for people who had problems before eas-No e-mail files were changed.
  • Fixes problems with closing “tabs” in Safari when you have a combination of pages in vertical and landscape mode open. eas-with additional use, it is obvious that this is still a problem.

Discussions elsewhere:

Newsflash: There is now a free GUI application for unlocking the iPhone.