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How to tell if your iPhone 3GS has an older or newer bootrom [jailbreak tip]

Want to jailbreak and unlock but need to know how to tell what bootrom your iPhone 3GS is running? There are two numbers in your settings that will be a dead giveaway as to what bootrom your phone has. You'll need to know how to determine your bootrom in certain situations if you want to achieve a software unlock.

  1. Open up Settings
  2. Tap on General
  3. Go to About
  4. If you scroll down a bit you'll see your serial number and your model number.

You can use one of these two numbers to determine if you have an older or newer bootrom.

Model number method

The easiest of the two is the model number. If your model number begins with MC, you have a newer bootrom. As you can see above, my serial starts with an MB. I have an older bootrom.

Serial number method

Another way you can check is by looking at the 4th and 5th digits of your serial number. If it is lower than around week 35, your bootrom is older. I'd say the model number method is the most efficient but you can use both to determine your bootrom version.

If you have other jailbreak questions or run into issues, check out our jailbreak and unlock forums as well!

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Allyson Kazmucha

Help and how to editor for iMore. I can take apart an iPhone in less than 6 minutes. I also like coffee and Harry Potter more than anyone really should.

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Reader comments

How to tell if your iPhone 3GS has an older or newer bootrom [jailbreak tip]

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Checking the model number is not a reliable test. I have an older Bootrom 3GS yet the model number is MC133X. Week number is 27.

Yeah. It's an easy indicator to start but I still suggest checking the serial. There were very few with the correct model that werent an older boot room. For more it holds true.

Has software unlock for newer basebands been given up? I bought a 4 from an Apple store at full retail right outside of the return policy before the announcement of being able to buy unlocked phones and would love to unlock it.

Easy jailbreakingAn iaeser way to jail break an ipod touch is these three easy steps.1. Download itunes of course.2.search on google spirit jailbreak and it should be the first link.3.go to the bottom and click witch ever computer u haveand then a box should apper sayin jailbreak click it and there.

YOU ARE ALL WRONG / PARTIALLY CORRECT

100% ACCURATE METHOD TO CHECK OLD BOOTROM or NEW BOOTROM:
http://www.redmondpie.com/how-to-check-iphone-3gs-bootrom-iboot-version/

on Windows 7/Vista/XP

Step 1: Put your iPhone into DFU Mode (not recovery mode)

Connect your iPhone to your computer.
Turn iPhone off.
Start iTunes.
Hold Power and Home buttons together for 10 seconds or so.
Release Power button but keep holding the Home button until your computer recognizes a new USB device.
iTunes will now recognize your iPhone.
Note: Your iPhone screen at this time should be blank (black in color), if not, then you are most likely in Recovery Mode, not DFU mode.

Step 2: Right Click on My Computer and click on: Properties -> Hardware (tab) -> Device Manager

Step 3: Select the “+” to open submenus tree items for "Universal Serial Bus (USB) Controller".

Step 4: Now look for "Apple Mobile Device USB Driver", right click and select Properties.

Step 5: Go to "Details" and find "Device Instance ID".

Step 6: Simply scroll through the string and you’ll find the bootrom version (iBoot) as shown in the screenshots below:

iPhone 3GS – Old Bootrom 359.3

iPhone 3GS – New Bootrom 359.3.2

Step 7: If it’s 359.3, you have old bootrom. If it’s 359.3.2 or anything above that, its a new bootrom.

on Mac OS X

Step 1: Put your iPhone into DFU Mode (not recovery mode)

Connect your iPhone to your computer.
Turn iPhone off.
Start iTunes.
Hold Power and Home buttons together for 10 seconds or so.
Release Power button but keep holding the Home button until your computer recognizes a new USB device.
iTunes will now recognize your iPhone.
Note: Your iPhone screen at this time should be blank (black in color), if not, then you are most likely in Recovery Mode, not DFU mode.

Step 2: Run "System Profiler" and navigate to: Hardware -> USB (menu on left).

Step 3: At the top right under “USB Device Tree” panel click “Apple Mobile Device (DFU Mode)”.

Step 4: Now down under in “Serial Number”, simply go through the string and you’ll find the bootrom version (iBoot) as shown in the screenshots below:

iPhone 3GS – Old Bootrom 359.3

Step 5: If it’s 359.3, you have old bootrom. If it’s 359.3.2 or anything above that, its a new bootrom.

Note: In both the cases above, it doesn’t matter whether your iPhone is an MB model or an MC model. As long as it has 359.3 bootrom, it is iPhone 3GS with old bootrom, and if 359.3.2 or above then it is iPhone 3GS with new bootrom.

It looks like you may have been misinformed thinking you have an old bootrom. Other comments have included some of the more reliable methods of checking.

You mention 4th and 5th digits as the week of manufacture which is in line with the consensus... however you neglect to notice (and mention) the THIRD digit, which should represent the year.

Your picture shows the serial # beginning with 84003 - if that's indeed your phone, then that would imply it was manufactured in the 3rd week of January 2010 while the NEW bootroms started rolling out in September 2009. If the 3rd digit is a '9' you still have a possibility of an old bootrom, though if it's a '0' it seems you've got the new one.

No place like the internet to propagate misinformation... Hopefully anyone who comes across this will read the other comments or at least check multiple sources before making assumptions!

for info: iPhone 3GS Bootrom version using OS X 10.9.3 Mavericks example
With a 3GS connected, in DFU mode, bootrom version in the System Report, Serial Number section: iBoot-359.3.2

Detailed steps below, for info,

“Apple” menu at top left, About this Mac, More Info…, System Report, List on left: USB, USB Hi-Speed Bus, Hub, Apple Mobile Device (DFU Mode), example output:

Apple Mobile Device (DFU Mode):
Product ID: 0x1227
Vendor ID: 0x05ac (Apple Inc.)
Version: 0.00
Serial Number: CPID:8920 CPRV:15 CPFM:03 SCEP:03 BDID:00 ECID:00000212C6142D0D SRTG:[iBoot-359.3.2]
Speed: Up to 480 Mb/sec
Manufacturer: Apple Inc.
Location ID: 0xfa140000 / 5
Current Available (mA): 500
Current Required (mA): 100