1 2 Previous Next 18 Replies Latest reply: Feb 4, 2013 9:03 PM by ambikasingh
Courcoul Level 6 Level 6 (11,470 points)

Yesterday Apple released iOS 6.1. Besides the stated features, there appear to be Easter eggs in the package. But the pros and cons of the content will be discussed elsewhere. I'd like to discuss the process of doing the upgrade in the safest fashion.

 

My new i5 came with 6.0.1. Mere days after getting it, 6.0.2 rolled out. Being young and naive, I recklessly went for an OTA upgrade. At the time, the carrier had 4G/LTE up and the process went uneventfully.

 

Now with 6.1, their LTE network has collapsed and they fell back on 3G, with less than stellar coverage. I decided to do the upgrade tethering the phone via USB cable to iTunes 11.0.1 running on my 10.7.5 MBP. And would like to present why it is the safest way to do an upgrade and why you should do yours with the backup of your computer.

 

First, the mechanics. After you plug in the phone and start up iTunes, the device will show up in the left pane. Selecting it and clicking the Summary tab, the Backups section is your focus. Either ensure tha Automatic Back Up is chosen to be done on the computer or do a Manual Back Up. iCloud automatic backup is not a desirable option at this time cause it does NOT back up all the contents and settings of the phone and will complicate recovery if it comes to that. To do an Automatic Back Up, you need to click the Sync button. A Manual Back Up is carried out at the click without having to visit the Sync button. Now click on Check for Update. iTunes will contact the App Store (you may need to sign in), detect 6.1 is available, and offer to Ignore, Download Only or Download and Update. Click Download and Update. iTunes will download and store in the Mac the 6.1 code, keeping it handy for any future use (i.e., phone restores or updating more than one phone). The file is somewhat large so be patient; on my 5Mbps ADSL home link with a wired connection, it took around 25 minutes. iTunes will be checkpointing and validating the download to ensure no errors.

 

Download completes and the phone's screen will show a globe with a USB plug pointing to it. At this point make sure it does not get disconnected till the process concludes or risk a bricked phone. Needless to say, the Mac should be connected to its power adapter so it doesn't run out of juice. The phone restarts and goes offline into maintenance mode, with the silver Apple logo on the screen. In iTunes progress bar, the current phone software and contents will be validated, the phone's registry and entitlements will be checked with Apple and software update commences. A progress bar will appear under the Apple logo on the phone screen. At the 50% mark, iTunes announces that the firmware will be updated. The progress bar fills up and iTunes states the phone will then restart, disconnecting itself from the Mac, and to wait till it reappears on iTunes' window.

 

Phone starts up but the usual green battery charging splash screen is replaced with an "IOS 6" logo and "slide to unlock" with "Configure" displayed in different languages. Doing so leads you to an "accept the terms" screen and then a "sign in to the App Store" screen where you have to retype your AppleID password. Finally it is back in its Home screen and ready to use both in iTunes as well as a fully updated iPhone.

 

Advantages to doing an upgrade this way?

 

  • The main download is carried out in the Mac, which can be set up with a faster and more reliable wired connection. Plus no cellular data charges.
  • The download is kept on the Mac for any further need, including updating several phones. Multi-iPhone families, take notice.
  • The process is extensively validated at all points. Provided you don't inadvertently pull the plug, the phone is never at risk anytime.
  • Should it be necessary, recovery is speedier since everything is backed up.
  • No risk of power loss and code corruption, provided you plug the Mac to the wall.
  • The process is extensively documented in a detailed log, useful if anything should go wrong.

 

For those fellow forum members who help out less fortunate users with sick phones, this last point seems quite useful. At the end of the process, the Mac's Console app will get you access to an iPhoneUpdate.log for each update. It documents in excruciating detail every bit of the process, which should prove invaluable if something goes wrong.

 

So there you have it. For those who have resisted all the way to here, thank you for your endurance. May this be of use.

 

Anything you'd like to add?


MacBook Pro (15-inch Late 2011), Mac OS X (10.7.5), 2.4GHz, 16GB, Widescreen/Anti-glare
  • 1. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    wjosten Level 10 Level 10 (93,295 points)

    Courcoul wrote:

    Anything you'd like to add?

     

    Did the update add Flash support?

  • 2. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    fromsouth Level 4 Level 4 (3,245 points)

    Now with 6.1, their LTE network has collapsed and they fell back on 3G, with less than stellar coverage. I decided to do the upgrade tethering the phone via USB cable to iTunes 11.0.1 running on my 10.7.5 MBP. And would like to present why it is the safest way to do an upgrade and why you should do yours with the backup of your computer.

     

    why not wifi?  That way you can 1. use icloud to back up - way more simple for me, being simpleton.

    2. No need to restore from back up or sync.

  • 3. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    Courcoul Level 6 Level 6 (11,470 points)

    wjosten wrote:

     

    Did the update add Flash support?

     

    Haven't tested, but would imagine Job's ghost would rise from the grave if it did!

     

    Tentatively, I'd hazard "better battery life". The thing used to drain about 5-6% of its juice overnight. This morning, 8 hours after last night's update, it had drained ZERO. 100% battery on the meter! And it had Cellular/Cellular Data/Wi-Fi/Bluetooth on, just Location services were off.

  • 4. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    JimHdk Level 7 Level 7 (23,635 points)

    You need to talk to this fellow then: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4754675?tstart=0 who wins the prize for being the first to post that an iOS update has ruined his battery life.

  • 5. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    Courcoul Level 6 Level 6 (11,470 points)

    fromsouth wrote:

     

    why not wifi?  That way you can 1. use icloud to back up - way more simple for me, being simpleton.

    2. No need to restore from back up or sync.

    Reliability. You have the Mac and its 750GB (in my case) of backup capability. Not subject to Wi-Fi's fadeouts.

     

    As for iCloud backup, remember it does NOT contain the entire phone's contents. If worse comes to pass, you may not even be able to fully reconstruct the phone from whatever's left in the Clouds.

  • 6. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    wjosten Level 10 Level 10 (93,295 points)

    I lost electricity to my house after updating....

  • 7. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    Courcoul Level 6 Level 6 (11,470 points)

    Don't tell me your 6.1 iPhone knocked out the nuclear reactor from the drain!

  • 8. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    AKRBTN Level 4 Level 4 (1,035 points)

    "....does not contain phone's entire contents..."

     

    What's missing then?

     

    I set up a new IP5 from a Cloud backup and everything came back fine.

  • 9. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    Courcoul Level 6 Level 6 (11,470 points)

    Further info that may be of use.

     

    The iOS 6.1 installer is kept by iTunes in its ~/Library/iTunes/iPhone Software Updates folder. The little critter weighs in at 1.04GB and appears to be model-specific, as expected. File name is iPhone5,1_6.1_10B143_Restore.ipsw

     

    All the non-default apps you have installed EVER, whether still on the phone or not, are found in ~/Music/iTunes/Mobile Applications. All such files have a .ipa suffix.

  • 10. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    fromsouth Level 4 Level 4 (3,245 points)

    wjosten wrote:

     

    I lost electricity to my house after updating....

    My wife stopped cooking again, **** update.

  • 11. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    Ralph9430 Level 6 Level 6 (13,310 points)

    There is no Flash on iOS devices because there is no version of Flash that will run in iOS. There was no addition of Flash with iOS 6.1

  • 12. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    Malignance Level 4 Level 4 (3,375 points)

    Ralph9430 wrote:

     

    There is no Flash on iOS devices because there is no version of Flash that will run in iOS. There was no addition of Flash with iOS 6.1

    There has been Flash starting with the iPhone 4 running iOS 4... the Flash is on the back of the iPhone, just right of the camera

  • 13. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    Courcoul Level 6 Level 6 (11,470 points)

    Let me add this extra writeup I posted on another thread, to complement this discussion:

     

    This morning I posted a writeup on how the 6.1 went when doing it tethered via USB to iTunes on a Mac and using a local (not iCloud) backup. Also mentioned that doing it this way left behind an extremely detailed log of the proceedings on the Mac.

     

    Well, after perusing this thread again, then going back and examining my upgrade log, I think I have an idea why some of us have had equal or improved battery life in the first few hours post-upgrade, while others have seen the device drain away. The key, it would seem, is the kind of backup you have: iCloud vs. local.

     

    You see, the upgrade wipes the phone absolutely clean. A Restore is mandatory after completion, else you'd have a totally blank phone and all users would be screaming bloody murder. Where it gets the stuff for the restore causes the battery longevity issues.

     

    When using a local storage, EVERYTHING on the phone gets saved. Every little bit. So Restore is merely an act of copying all back, at USB speed. Furthermore, iTunes tells you to wait till the phone comes back online (post-Restore) before unplugging it. All this is supported by the log I got as a bonus.

     

    When I was reviewing what iCloud storage offered, they clearly state that only "the most important data" is placed in the cloud. Naturally, Apple will only give us the bare minimum to store only irreplaceable data. Stuff that can be recomputed, like thumbnails, indexes, etc., are left out. So, when you upgraded OTA only the barebones data went in the cloud, and then fetched back at the end. THEN the phone had to chug along for quite awhile to reconstruct the rest of the stuff. The bigger the photo collection, the larger the song lists, the longer the contacts, the more the phone had to do. And there goes the battery.

     

    Maybe someone who hasn't upgraded and plans to do so OTA can make sure to have an app like Device Doctor installed, where you can measure CPU workload and the number of processes. Check it before the upgrade and immediately after to confirm whether the phone is chugging away like a maniac or not.

  • 14. Re: Observations on a successful 6.1 SW upgrade
    ambikasingh Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    The battery has improved on 6.1, really?

     

    I am on 6.0.1 (iphone 4).

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