My screenshots for this tutorial are from my Mac, however all the applications mentioned are available with Windows versions too with similar interfaces, so you should have no problems following along.
Legal Disclaimer: As ever, MakeUseOf cannot guarantee the safety of this tutorial for your device or your computer. If you can’t afford to buy another iPad if yours were to break, you should not be firmware hacking in the first place. If you decide to take advantage of this tutorial, do so at your own risk.
1. Save Your SHSH Blobs With TinyUmbrella
Whatever version you are running now, it is always wise to “save your blobs” so that you can downgrade should you wish to in the future. This is a necessary step, as everytime you change the firmware on your iDevice, Apple attempts to verify it online. After a while, they refuse to verify old versions of the iOS, so trying to downgrade to an earlier firmware will simply not work. With your blobs saved, you can redirect that authentication to a private server instead, and your iPad will think everything is happy in the world, and go ahead with the downgrade.
Once you’ve downloaded TinyUmbrella, plug in your device through the USB cable. If iTunes asks you if you want to upgrade your device, just tell it no for now. You may want to perform a full sync if you haven’t done so in a while, to transfer your iPad purchases to iTunes etc.
When done, open up and install TinyUmbrella. You should see your device listed on the left, and if you’ve ever done this before you’ll see your previously saved blobs listed in the center. Notice I’ve already saved pretty much every firmware version so far. There should be a button for Save All SHSHs. If it’s not enabled, click on the top option from the left sidebar that says Show All SHSHs, then try again.
Click the Save All SHSHs, and although it might not initially look like anything is happening, the list should gradually grow.
Note: While the symbol next to your device continues to spin, I found the app had crashed at this point. I went ahead and closed the app anyway, as I knew it had grabbed all the SHSHs (up to the latest version I was running). Leave it for at least 15 minutes if you’re not sure.
- , for OS X or Windows.
- Download version 4.2.1 of the iOS firmware, for iPad from here (or other devices here). The file should be a rather large 551MB.
Begin by upgrading your iPad to a clean install of 4.2.1 firmware. To do this, download the firmware from the above link, and launch iTunes. From the iPad screen, ignore the message that asks you to update. Select your own downloaded firmware file by first holding down ALT (on OS X) or SHIFT (on Windows) and then clicking the Restore button. iTunes should bring up a dialog for you to choose your firmware, so go ahead and do so. You should have no problems, after 15 minutes your iPad will be upgraded with fresh clean firmware.
Next we are going to run the Jailbreak, so unzip and launch Greenpois0n. This is where most people mess things up, so do be careful. Read the instructions thoroughly before you go ahead and click the button so you know exactly what you have to do. It goes like this:
- When you click jailbreak, you will given a 5 second preparation time.
- When the timer reaches zero, press and hold the sleep button for about 5 seconds. There will be a countdown for this.
- Continue holding the sleep button, but press and hold the home button too. Again, a countdown will be displayed for 10 seconds.
- Continue holding the home button, but release the sleep button. Again, a timer is displayed to help you.
- You can safely let go when the Greenpois0n logo is displayed.
- Your iPad will display a bunch of random text, do not be worried. After a while it will pause, looking like it has crashed. Don’t worry, it is jailbreaking your device.
- Your iPad should reboot, leaving you with a standard looking screen.
You aren’t quite finished yet. If you scroll to the second home screen, you will notice a new green icon labeled Loader. This is to install Cydia and post-jailbreak items. However, you need the Internet to run it and since all your settings have now been wiped, you will need to set up your wifi connection in settings again. When you’re done, launch loader, select Cydia, then click Install Cydia. When it was finished and I clicked back to my home screen, my iPad restarted itself – this is normal.
Congratulations, your device is now Jailbroken! What you do with it now is up to you. Remember, if you find you do find yourself hating version 4.2, you can safely downgrade using the tutorial I posted a month back, or you could learn about all the great 4.2 features you’d be missing. Also, look out for the iPad guide we’ll be releasing in a few weeks.
iOS 4.3 will out be out soon, but as ever, hold off on upgrading if you enjoy your jailbroken abilities.