Previous 1 2 3 Next 36 Replies Latest reply: Mar 26, 2013 6:00 PM by Shintz123 Branched to a new discussion.
Kwintenc Level 1 Level 1

Yesterday my iPhone 4S asked me to install the iOS 6.1 update (via the "over the air". After downloading and preparing the update, the iPhone rebooted itself to start the update process.

Unfortunately, this is where it all went wrong. It seems like the iPhone update failed somewhere along this process. It is now stuck in "Recovery Mode", with the picture showing me to connect the phone to iTunes.


I have tried countless times restoring the phone via iTunes, on 4 different computers, and on Windows 7 and OS X.

Nothing works. The restore process fails during the "Preparing iPhone" phase.


Here's what happens every time:

  • I can see the phone being restarted.
  • The Apple logo shows up, and a little wheel in the bottom of the screen starts spinning
  • As soon as (usually even before) the progress bar shows up on the phone, the device suddenly shuts down
  • The iPhone reboots right back into recovery mode, asking me to connect to iTunes


I'm quite desperate at this point. I have followed all steps imaginable (including turning off Windows firewall and antivirus software), but even then the restore still won't complete. iTunes always gives me the same error: 1611.

When putting the phone into DFU manually, it gives me another error: 21.

Both seem to point to third-party security software interfering with the restore process.

However, having tried this on 4 different computers, I am 99% sure that this is not the issue. So far I've tried:

  • HP Laptop - Windows 7
  • Asus Desktop - Windows 7
  • 2010 Macbook Pro 15" - OS X Mountain Lion + Windows 8 (Bootcamp)
  • 2010 Macbook Pro 13" - OS X Mountain Lion


Also, I should mention that in Belgium there aren't any official Apple Stores where I can book an appointment at a Genius Bar. Is this 4S doomed?

iPhone 4S, iOS 6.1
  • Hasan123 Level 1 Level 1

    I have the same problem

    I "fix it" by restoring the same ios version (5.1) with redsnow

    But i can,t until now upgrade or downgrade my 4s

  • kefo68 Level 1 Level 1

    I have the same problem with my 4s I get error 3014... However being without a iphone for a few days builds character and gives one time to contemplate Samsung's offerings

    I look forward to my genius bar appt

  • wuzi36 Level 1 Level 1

    hi i hope this helps you guys out. after searching on the  net for 3 days on end my iphone 4s was stuck in recoverymode after the 6.1 update. to solve this problem this is the steps i took.


    1 put idevice into recovery mode

    2 windows 7 nor a mac would restore my phone so this is where windows 8 comes into play!!!!!!!

    3 fresh install of windows 8 on small partition of hard drive with no extra programs installed accept itunes

    4 start itunes while phone is still in dfu mode plug in to computer

    5 go through restore process and your idevice should be alive


    let me know if this was any help.

  • Lawrence Finch Level 8 Level 8
    Mac OS X


    This error can be caused by your antivirus or firewall blocking access to Apple's activation servers, a hacked or jailbroken phone, or the computer you are using to restore on was used at some time in the past to hack or jailbreak an iOS device.

  • .tomaZ Level 1 Level 1

    What error where you having on iTunes when restoring? I´m having error 36 with the exact behaviour of the initial post. Did you solve something like this with windows 8?

  • Lawrence Finch Level 8 Level 8
    Mac OS X


    Which states that this error usually means that your antivirus or firewall is preventing the update from completing. You need to disable them during the update.

  • .tomaZ Level 1 Level 1

    i´ve tried everything on that link, tried on a mac without any AV/FW, on a PC without AV/FW and nothing seems to work.

  • Kwintenc Level 1 Level 1


    Hasan123Unfortunately I wouldn't be able to downgrade to lower iOS versions even if I managed to get a restore going...



    Check your hosts file in Windows / OS X. This guide might help solve your problem:


    I have already tried restoring the phone on my Macbook Pro running Windows 8 Pro, with the latest version of iTunes, but unfortunately the same errors still pop up...


    @Lawrence Finch

    Antivirus and firewall are off, access to the Apple update verification servers is not the problem...



    Errors 1611 (in recovery mode) and sometimes 21 (when restoring in DFU mode).

  • Lawrence Finch Level 8 Level 8
    Mac OS X

    Well, the other possibility, as the article says, is a hardware issue. Although if the phone has been jailbroken or hacked that could be another possibility.

  • .tomaZ Level 1 Level 1

    @Lawrence Finch this is no hardware issue, it is a problem with the upgrade to 6.1 that bricked my iphone (that wasn´t jailbreaked).


    As Kwintenc I´ve also tried a lot of stuff because I´m not new to iphones and I´m an advanced windows/osx/ios user.


    Saddly the iphone is still in warranty but I also leave in a country that hasn´t got official Apple service provider (Argentina).


    I´m gonna try now to install a W8 VM and see if that helps, but I´m almost sure it wont.


    Do you know if there is a way to get apple support by mail / phone in a country they haven´t got official service?

  • edj13 Level 1 Level 1

    hi, I have exactly the same problem. I have not firewall or anti virus installed. changed usb cables, tried on two apples, still getting error 2001 and 2006. This must be a OS6.1 issue. Parcular thing with me is that the phone started the upgrade on it own!!!!  when not even connected to itunes and crashed when it requested to connect to itunes. Very frustraing... My iphone4 is out of warrenty and i will be paying $$$$ for a tech to fix.. 

  • wuzi36 Level 1 Level 1

    Hi sorry for late reply about w8. I'm not shore why windows 8 saved my IPhone 4S but it also saved my iPhone 5 too. My 4s was jbroken. iTunes itself gave me error codes like 9006 (-1) and loads of others.  I tried tuning of firewall and antivirus but that didn't help hence why I tried the w8 route which worked for me.

  • Soss32 Level 1 Level 1

    I've got exactly the same problem with my 4s and same error codes on attempting recovery.

    Created fresh installation of Windows XP without AV software and FW turned off. Still cannot do recovery.

    It's really annoying. I've lost my phone and so far there seems to be no remedy.

  • .tomaZ Level 1 Level 1

    Tried to recover with windows 2008 server fresh install, and windows 8 fresh install, both with same luck (error 36).


    I´ve seen that we are a lot of people with the same problem, how can we tell apple about this? Does anyone know if some apple representative watch this forums?

Previous 1 2 3 Next