When iOS updates fail.

So a colleague and I had a private twitter conversation this evening regarding his inability to install iOS 5. He received the following message at the onset of the update process: “There was a problem downloading the software for the iPhone ‘Friend’s Phone’. The requested resource was not found.”

We went through several steps, as I didn’t have the same experience as he did.

  • Could he restore? No.
  • Was he going through a USB hub? No.
  • Was he using the latest version of iTunes (10.5)? No.
Finally, I asked him to try to restore via DFU mode (Device Firmware Update, although there is an equally apt alternate meaning for the last two letters.)
The process for initiating DFU mode is simple:
  1. Plug in the device via USB.
  2. Open iTunes.
  3. Hold down the power and home buttons on the iPhone for 10 seconds.
  4. Let up on the power but continue holding the home button.
  5. iTunes should detect that your device needs to be restored.
This is the last hope for failed iOS issues, but it is still a process that doesn’t cause pain. Especially with iOS 5’s new ability to back up with iCloud.