Jailbreak iOS 5.0.1 now!

A sickly feeling crawls up my spine as my iPhone refuses to reboot. Damn you Apple, damn you for making it so difficult to Jailbreak iOS 5.0.1. Three days and a hundred reboots later, the Cydia icon happily nests on my iPhone’s desktop, the sign of a successful Jailbreak. For hackers, it seems that no wall is too high too climb and no version of iOS is too tricky to crack.

Jailbreaking iOS 5.0.1

Apple is proud of its latest iOS, especially its over-the-air (OTA) updates which limits the amount of time iDevice users spend updating their hardware. This is what made jailbreaking such a tricky affair as previous version of iOS required iTunes to update. Now, updates can happen at any moment (but are still optional) and the security features of iOS 5 become trickier than ever.

Before iOS 5, jailbreaking an iPhone was as easy as visiting a website on the device’s browser and tapping “jailbreak me”. Now, or until hackers create a simpler process, jailbreaking is a long and tortuous affair. But it can be done. So how did I do it?

I’m no hacker, all I want is a phone free of Apple’s limitations. I want to install my own themes, fix the speed issues, run “unauthorised” software and enjoy the full functionality of my iPhone. For I and many other iPhone users never truly “own” our devices, we are merely “renting” them until we next decide to upgrade to a new iPhone. The jailbreak legality issues only rears its ugly head when illegal software (such as a game you have not paid for) is installed to the iDevice. Outside of this, it’s a must for all iDevice owners.

For me, jailbreaking is a moral obligation. But iOS 5.0.1 presented a mighty challenge. While there are many ways to hack iOS 5.0, the updated OS was ever the trickier beast. So here’s what you have to do, iOS 5.0.1 users.

Important note: the jailbreak will currently only work on the iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS. The iPhone 4S and iPad are trickier due to the A5 chipset, but jailbreaking on these devices is imminent. This guide is for Windows users. Mac users can download the the appropriate jailbreaking software here (the same steps below will apply). Gearburn does not condone the use of illegally obtained software. Any reader following the steps below does so at their own risk of data loss or phone being damaged or “bricked” owing to an incorrect jailbreaking process or any other factor. You have been warned. Don’t do this unless you know what you are doing, and accept the risk you are taking.

  • Download RedSn0w 0.9.9b8 and install it to your computer.
  • Next, grab the iOS 5 IPSW (iPhone software) for either the iPhone 4 or the iPhone 3GS. This will be used to create a custom hack of the iOS firmware. RedSn0W, the weirdly named hacking software won’t run iOS 5.0.1 firmware, so iOS 5 has to be used.
  • Before connecting your iPhone to the computer for jailbreaking, make sure that it is turned off. Once your phone is both off and connected (close iTunes if it happens to open), run RedSn0w.
  • There are two options available on the RedSn0w main screen. For our purposes, you will need to click “extras”.
  • Click “Select IPSW” and choose your corresponding firmware, depending on which phone you have. Once it’s been loaded onto the system, you’ll fall back to the home screen.
  • You can now click on “Jailbreak”. For novice jailbreakers, this is a scary time but fear not the constant reboots and black screens, all will be well. You hope.
  • Again, RedSn0w will ask you to turn off your phone before it is connected. Jailbreaking the iPhone means placing it into Device Firmware Update or DFU mode.
  • RedSn0w will walk you through the DFU steps. You will know if you have been successful if the iPhone screen turns black and displays a very faint line vertically down the screen.
  • The iOS 5 firmware is hacked by RedSn0w and uploaded to your phone in DFU mode. During the rebooting stages, you should not have to touch your phone. If you see an image of an iPhone cable connecting to iTunes on your devices screen, you will need to restart the DFU process.
  • As the hacked iOS 5 firmware loads, relax and enjoy the three to five minutes waiting period. Your iPhone will reboot a few times, the screen will go black and eventually, code will begin to stream down your device. This is a sign of a successful jailbreaking process.
  • When your phone is stable once more, select “Just boot” from Redsn0w’s “extras” menu to complete the process. This is what is known as a “tethered” boot and owing to the nature of iOS 5, every time you need to reboot your device in the future, the tethered RedSn0w reboot will have to be used.
  • If all went well, the brown Cydia icon will be proudly displayed on your iPhone. If the icon is white, it means that you did not perform the tethered boot.
  • In the future, updated versions of RedSn0w may remove the need for a tethered boot, but for now this is the iOS 5 user’s only semi-stable option. The only untethered option is in an alpha form and instructions for its installation can be found here.

    With Cydia now installed on your iPhone, the path to greatness is revealed. Cydia is the main repository for all things jailbreak and from here, your phone can be turned into the device you always wanted it to be. Squeeze more icons into your dock, customise the home button, browse the iPhone’s file system and do so much more with your iPhone. With jailbreaking, your phone turns into the device it was always meant to be.

    • My First Attempt

      Thanks Steven, I did the whole process once again. This time it shows error on screen “Error, no successful firmware download after 60000ms!! Giving up…”
      What can be done?

    • Steven

      You are using a Mac correct? With the Mac it tries to auto download the file. Download the one I have supplied and go to “extras” and “select IPSW” and load ios 5.0 firmware. It’s the only way to get it to work.

    • My First Attempt

      No I am using Windows, is there a separate build for Win?

    • Steven

      No, not at all. Good so then use the build I gave you. There should be no firmware download process… All I can say is keep trying. Took me a week to JB my 3GS. Good luck :)

    • My First Attempt

      Sometimes on Redsnow, its shows as Unrecognized build. Any idea?

    • Steven

      Yeah, means it’s the wrong IPSW.

    • My First Attempt

      :( But this is what mentioned by you. Please let me know the correct version so that I can give another try. I have used 5.0 till now on 3GS.

    • Steven,1_5.0.1_9A405_Restore.ipsw

      that is a link to the source IPSW from Apple itself. If that does not work, nothing will.

    • My First Attempt

      I am restoring factory setting which will give 5.0.1 in any case and will try to JB again. Hope this works?

    • Justan

      last time i jailbroke my iphone 4 ios 5.0.1 9A405, which was a few days ago, everything went well. I’ve jailbroken my 3gs i had before and all was well, but when i jailbroke this one the other day, everything finished correctly i was able to get cydia up and running. but then i installed app sync for ios 5.0+ and then restarted my phone and it was frozen on the apple screen for ever. What does that mean, also should note that last time i jailbroke it with “whitesnow” i think is the program name

    • Zac_west

      Finally got one of th 5.0 ipsw file to work properly, so jailbreak successful!! Now redsnow says invalid baseband when I click iPad basband. I don’t really want to go to the 6.15 bb but need to unlock for t mobile. Any suggestions or alternate methods of unlock?

    • damienstarr

      ok thats what im doing but im getting the message your phone does not support untethered option and then redsnow just quits on me even though im trying to do it tethered 

    • San

      I get all the way to the White Cydia icon then perform the “Just Boot” method and it ends up telling me “Unrecognizable”

    • dyako

      my iphones version is 5.0.1 how can jail break it

    • Gahondadude

      Worked Just fine for me, THANKS!!!!!!

    • Steven

      Does it say that when you try to access Cydia? Which IPSW did you use? Which phone do you have?

    • Steven

      Read my guide :)

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    • macfrustration

      I have tried at least 20 times step by step and can’t get past the “Waiting to reboot” screen…I have an iPhone 4 iOS 5.0.1. I downloaded the iOS 5.0 file and the latest redsn0w version for mac. It does not work (for me). I looked at forums and blogs and  can’t find an answer. I’m trying to unlock it to take it to Costa Rica and be able to use it there…I need to jailbreak first (so I read). Your help is greatly appreciated.

    • Mack

      Mack again. So I still get nothing but ‘Waiting for Reboot”. I have restored my iPhone twice, entered DFU mode EXACTLY when it tells me to, even redownloaded Redsn0w. Its a no go. Help me!

    • Mack

      Same problem. I have tried everything! help!

    • Rokikrajnc

      i have a white cydia app….what should i doo !?
      please answer

    • Steven

      Well of course you had to DL redsn0w? Did you DL the IPSW which I linked to?

    • unknown ipsw

      Working on JB my iphone 4 with ios 5.0 using RedSn0w
      0.9.9b8, when I download the .ipsw it is in a .bbw file when I convert to .ipsw
      RedSn0w 0.9.9b8 does not recognize the file. I have DL and tired every .ipsw
      for both iphone 4 CDMA & GSM and none work…. What am I doing WRONG? Any
      suggestions as what I need to do I cannot JB without the firmware upgrade for
      the ios?  Very frustrated thus far with
      JB my iphone 4! Thanks…

    • Steven

      you need to select the correct IPSW in “choose IPSW” and then “just boot”.

    • Steven

      If you are having to convert it, you are doing it wrong as they say. BBW is a video format?

    • San

      It says that once I get the Cydia icon on my phone and try to perform the tethered boot….it tells me Unrecognizable.  My phone is an iPhone 4 CDMA version and is running iOS 5.0.1.    I downloaded iOS 5.0 and used that file to jailbreak.

    • Gimme Junkmail

      what did you do to get it out of the “please wait while your build is being ideentified” state? it’s been over 20 mins now, and i’m afraid of pulling the plugand retrying

    • Pavarox_01

      I’ve select manually the IPSW and it works

    • Shema153

      Hi Steven,
      I have Iphone 4 version 5.0.1 / Modem firmware 04.11.08 kindly help to Jail break. Carrier AT&T

    • Mona loca

      A day after jailbreak my iPhone 4s, I got a white text icon but it worked anyway. I rebooted a couple of times and didnt fix the problem. I installed sbsetting and tha fixed the problem :)

    • Sathya

      Hello Steven, please tell whether its possible to unlock the iphone4 version 5.0.1 (bb 04.11.08)so that it can be used in any other country :)

    • IGOD69M

      been trying to jailbreak after the update all damn night!! Found this article ND IT WORKS PERFECT!! THANK YOU!!!!

    • Steven

      Hey, I aim to please ;)

    • Donmurph

      ive tryed many times to unlock my iphone 4 (5.0.1 and firmware 4.11.08) i even payed for the jailbreaking software and still couldnt use the phone so highly frustrated at this point. now i have come across this article. im a complete novice at this stuff and dont quite understand what this means
      “Next, grab the iOS 5 IPSW (iPhone software) for either the iPhone 4 or the iPhone 3GS. This will be used to create a custom hack of the iOS firmware. RedSn0W, the weirdly named hacking software won’t run iOS 5.0.1 firmware, so iOS 5 has to be used.”
      explain please?had the phone for the past 2 months coming on 3 and just mite sell it.

    • AD

      I have an Iphone 4s iOs 5.0.1. Each time I insert my Sim card it says no service and sometimes invalid sim. Pls, I really need you help to enable my sim. I’m in Liberia, West Africa.
      my email:
      On Facebook, I’m Adolphus S. Paye or

    • Ian1276

      would help ya lad but i dont know what to do,looks like your stuck.

    • Thecrazyglopss

       I did this, and not one thing even happened.

      There is no Cydia icon at all, but it’s worth noting that it stopped at something about 6000 ms and that it was giving up.

    • Anonymous

      It is my first time jailbreaking a phone I have an iphone4 with the 5.0.1 software. I jailbroke it using redsn0w and even though I see cydia my phone still says invalid sim. I just got a brand new sim from tmobile so Im not sure why its saying that? I went into cydia and installed ultrasn0w and now my status has changed from invalid SIM to Searching… PLEEEASE HELP! I have no idea what to do?? Thank you so much for a speedy reply I am going crazy without my phone I need it for work! 

    • Steven

      you need to unlock your carrier. That’s an easy process, but one that I haven’t written about yet. Did you turn off 3G before you installed ultrasn0w? That’s an important step… With ultrasn0w, any sim from any country should work. If nothing, restore the phone and start again.

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    • Jon

      With jailbreaking, your phone turns into the device it was always meant to be.” Yes, an Android.

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