Previous 1 2 3 4 Next 90 Replies Latest reply: Mar 3, 2016 10:58 AM by Elliott Royle Go to original post Branched to a new discussion.
  • The-G Level 1 Level 1

    I get the same error on iPhone 4S when I try to update from the mobile itself. When I try to do it from itunes instead, I get stucked on the 'Contacting the iPhone update server' bar, it just keeps trying without giving me any error message..

  • Sean5634 Level 1 Level 1

    I am getting the same error on 1 iPhone 4s and 1st Gen iPad. My wife's iPhone 4s gets the updat to pull up and then it won't download, she gets an error.

  • vincas Level 1 Level 1

    I connected to the internet from  a different wifi hotspot, and both my iPad 1 and iPhone 4 connected and updated immediately. Try it! : )

  • Matthew Holley Level 1 Level 1

    Excellent tip vincas.  I switched from one wi-fi hospot to another & connected & downloaded the update straight away. 

  • vincas Level 1 Level 1

    Glad I could help. Shows the usefullness of these forums! : )

  • muffin789 Level 1 Level 1

    Still having the same issues on iPhone 4s and iPad


    Spoke to Apple support earlier, and they walked me through a few things (after I'd done a factory reset, and then found the activation servers were "temporarily unavailable", leaving me with a completely-non functioning phone). In recovery mode, and with my Mac freshly restarted and the iPhone/iPad connected to iTunes, I'm still getting the hanging alter saying that iTunes is contacting the update servers for hours on end.


    I've been advised to try again "tonight" and if that doesn't sort it, it may be a new phone on the way. Not sure what the implications for my iPad are, though. Will be my next question if this persists....


    ETA - no accessible wifi hotspots around me, so can't easily try OTA from a different location on the iPad, but may take a drive to a friend's and hijack their wifi to give that a try.

  • B-K Level 1 Level 1

    I'm having the same issue. My iPhone 4S is getting an error after I try to download the update, and my iPad 2 is getting an error when trying to check for updates.

  • iPunchYoFace Level 1 Level 1

    Use your brains people. The Servers are over loaded. Just wait and try later. It doesn't matter what device you are using or which wifi or anything like that. Learn some patience.

  • TRSmudge Level 1 Level 1

    It was my DNS Servers that my ISP had

    I changed to Open DNS and it started immediately on all 5 of my devices

  • giosdeveloper Level 1 Level 1

    It has nothing to do with the servers being overloaded.


    There are two distinct issues. 


    1. Specific network issues

    2. Software Issues


    My post above gives steps on how to fix the software issues.  If they do not work, then try a different network.  Even try checking for the update over 3G (rather than WIFI) first and seeing if that works.

  • kxmx43 Level 1 Level 1

    Nice one, solved after changing DNS on iPhone to Google (, Though, not sure why my ISP's (Sky) DNS was causing issues.

  • giosdeveloper Level 1 Level 1

    In Summary


    If you are getting the error message "Unable to check for update" when you try an OTA (over the air update) there are two things to try:


    1. Change DNS Servers

    • Settings -> Wi-Fi
    • Click the blue arrow on your connected network
    • Delete everything in DNS and replace it with,
    • Try again
    • If this works, you will probably want to remove the WiFi network using "Forget This Network" and then reconnect to it to get your original DNS servers back. Alternatively, make a note of the original DNS servers before deleting them and replace it after you are done.


    If the above does not work then try the second option

    2. Reset device

    • Backup your iPhone/iPad to iCloud (very important).  Settings -> iCloud -> Storage and Backup -> Backup Now (at the bottom)
    • Erase your device.  Settings -> General -> Reset -> Erase All Content And Settings
    • Device will reset and wipe itself
    • When it restarts follow the instructions on screen and setup your device. You're choices here do not really matter except for restoring from a backup.  Do not restore a backup, choose "Set up as new".
    • When complete, the Software Update should now work which will install IOS 5.1
    • When installed, Erase the device again. (See Step 2)
    • Once erased, follow the wizard but this time select that you wish to restore from a backup in iCloud.  Select the backup that you took in step 1.
    • Your device should be back to normal and with IOS 5.1.


    These are the two known fixes at the moment.  I hope this helps.

  • muffin789 Level 1 Level 1

    Have managed to get my iPad to download the update OTA by changing the DNS settings as above - thanks!


    Now I just need a way of getting my iPhone sorted....

  • bl1nk_by Level 1 Level 1

    Updating started when I changed DNS as described above. It says that 2 hours (?!) is left, I'm waiting

  • Russ T Level 1 Level 1

    Thanks for the tip. I changed the DNS setting in my router to use the servers from and I was immediately able to download the update on both my iPad and iPhone 4 (Verizon).

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