This guide and tutorial will show you how to jailbreak your iPhone 3G running firmware 3.1, using PwnageTool for Mac OS X. So far, only PwnageTool is available for jailbreaking the 3.1 iPhone 3G and it is only for Mac. I believe a RedSn0w method for both Mac and PC will be available soon.

1. Make sure you have installed the latest version of  iTunes (iTunes 9).

2. On your desktop, create a folder called “jailbreak” or whatever name you want to give it. It doesn’t really matter. Download PwnageTool 3.1 and the 3.1 IPSW (iPhone1,2_3.1_7C144_Restore.ipsw) from here and save them into the “jailbreak” folder. Note that you should download the firmware using FireFox as Safari often brings up issues. Also note that the PwnageTool download link is a torrent and you will need a torrent downloader (ie. uTorrent) to download it.

3. Launch PwnageTool. It will give you some sort of warning. Just click OK. On the next screen, choose the “Expert Mode”.

4. Select your iPhone model and click the blue arrow to continue.

5. Browse for the IPSW you downloaded in step 2. You should then get a green check mark.

6. You will now be offered several options. Choose “General”. Make sure the “Activate the phone” box is left UNCHECKED if you use an official carrier (such as AT&T in the US, Roger in Canada, etc…). This is very important. If you are not using an official carrier, then CHECK “Activate the iPhone”.

7. Increase the root partition size to 700 MB. This is not necessary but it is safer. Then click the blue arrow to continue. Click the blue arrow one more time to skip the bootneuter settings, which aren’t available for the iPhone 3G.

8. You will now have the possibility to pre-install a few packages from Cydia so you don’t have to do it manually later. I will skip this part. Click the blue arrow to go to the next step.

9. You will now be in the “Custom packages settings”. Make sure Cydia is selected and you may want to select Icy as well. For what it’s worth, I do not use Icy. I only use Cydia but you’re free to select both if you want. Whatever you do, make sure at least Cydia is selected. Click the blue arrow to continue.

10. You can now set your own “Custom logos settings”. I don’t use any but again, you can choose the one pre-selected or you can even upload your own. If you choose to upload your own, remember the logo mustn’t be bigger than 320 x 480. Click the blue arrow when done to continue.

11. It is now time to start the pwnage process. You should be on the main options screen offering you 6 different options. Choose “Build” and click the blue arrow to continue.

12. You will now have to save your custom IPSW file. Save it in the “jailbreak” folder we created in step 2.

13. Your custom IPSW firmware will now be built, which may take up to 15 minutes, so be patient.

14. You will most likely be asked for your administrator password. Fill in the blanks and click OK.

15. You will then be asked if your iPhone has been pwned before. Just answer “No”.

16. Now is the most important step. You will first be asked to turn off your iPhone. Follow the instructions on your computer screen to put your iPhone into DFU mode. Basically, you have to hold the home and power buttons together for 10 seconds, then release the power button but still hold the home button. If done correctly, PwnageTool will tell you you successfully entered the DFU mode.

17. If iTunes hasn’t launched automatically, open it. iTunes should tell you it has detected an iPhone in recovery mode. Click OK.

18. In iTunes, hold the “Alt/Option” key and click Restore at the same time. DO NOT click “restore” without holding the “Alt/Option” key! A window will pop up and you’ll be able to choose the custom IPSW file you created in step12 that you saved in your “jailbreak” folder.

19. iTunes will now work on restoring your iPhone using the custom firmware.

20. Done! You will now be offered the option to set up your iPhone as a new phone or restore from a previous backup. I personally like to start fresh and I always choose to set it up as a new phone, but it’s your choice.

21. You should now see the Cydia icon on the second page of applications on your iPhone. Congratulations, you just jailbreaked your iPhone 3G 3.1 with PwnageTool.

If you have any question or concern, please leave a comment.

  • Johann

    hi everyone,
    i have followed the instructions above but can’t get any signal…

  • henri

    @ Johann,

    what baseband version do you have? if 4.26.08 , just install Ultrasn0w, if 05.11.0 …then you are out of
    luck for now ~~

  • henri

    @ John,

    Seems you use a official provider anyway, just follow the procedure (note that there is a new Pwnage tool ). In the worst case you can just restore

  • Jeremy

    I have a jailbroken iPhone 3g with 3.0 and I need to update it to 3.1 through iTunes so that I can use the free MMS and so my cydia will be fixed(long story but it doesn’t ruin anything I just need to re jailbreak it) and then I can have my phone back to normal. I used windows redsnow to jailbreak it before 3.1 came out and now I’m not sure if I’ll use a mac or windows but I need to know how to on both, just in case one doesn’t work (problems with landlords wifi but nothing crazy) please help!

  • Johann

    @ henri

    many thanks for your hint…
    just discovered that i got bb version 05.11.07… . so i can forget 3.1 and unlocking for now? any chance of soon help?
    do i have to downgrade to 3.0 again to get my phone working?


  • henri

    @ Johann

    Even downgrading will not make your phone work~~~ UNLESS you have an old 3G that has the 5.08 bootloader, then you can downgrade just as you want. what are the first 5 digits of the serial number?

  • henri

    @ Jeremy,

    If you don’t really need 3.1… why not just running redsn0w again and install the MMS hack ???

  • Jeremy

    True but would running just the redsnow again fix my phone so that cydia can run correctly again? I always get a message when I open cydia before it reloads data tht says “The method driver /usr/lib/apt/methods/http could not be found” and it hasn’t updated the changes since I first got it and it won’t let me install certain things, so I just née a restore and re jailbreak I beleive, but would a restore through iTunes ruin my phone? Or what’s the simplest way to fix this?

  • Trevor

    @ anyone who can help

    hopefully I’m not asking something that has already been answered, but here it goes..
    I tried to jailbreak my iphone 3G version 3.1 today. (for the 1st time)
    I followed your steps exactly and everything seemed to finish up properly.

    HOWEVER, once i turned my phone back on, the cydia app was nowhere to be found.

    my phone runs and looks exactly the same way it did before I ‘jail-broke’ it.
    I’m wondering now if I even successfully completed the jailbreak? if so does anyone know where I went wrong and how I can fix it?
    Like I said, it finished and did everything the tutorial said it would do.. except there is no cydia, and therefore none of the awesome-ness that comes with a jailbreak!
    someone please help me? I will check the forum often and reply promptly.

    Thanks a ton.

  • Barbie1215

    I was able to successfully jailbreak, unlock, and enable MMS on my stepfathers 2g, My moms 3g, and my 3gS. YES it works on the 3gS. My carrier (T-mobile) isn’t listed on top but that’s not so important to me, as long as my phone works for what I need it to.

    The steps here do work and successfully but you have to READ all the instructions first. Then you try doing it, something as simple as not hitting the option+update button takes you to the un-modded version and takes the baseband up, making unlocking impossible for now. The instructions, ofcourse, are for those brave enough to try this on their own. I do help other people do it and I tell them from the jump that this is not something to attempt if you aren’t techy inclined, otherwise you end up with a itouch, or worse yet a paperweight. I see all these questions for things that are easy to understand if you read through the instructions first, print them if you have to, then do it. It does work. Don’t try to be so fast that your fry your phone.

  • Jeremy

    So how can I fix mine? I cab use a friends mac but I can’t download torrents, I used windows on another computer to jailbreak it the first time. Any suggestions?

  • henri


    Sure you have internet connection?? can you use safari for instance??, if so then your
    sub-system is broken (apt-get) which should be solved by jailbreaking your device again~

  • Jeremy

    Yes I use safari and everything esle that uses my wifi. So if I just simply run the jailbreak process through it again? Even while it’s still jailbroken? And can I just use the 3.1 firmware Or would the 3.0 firmware work as well?

  • henri

    @ Jeremy,

    Use the 3.0 firmware, redsn0w can only work with this one

  • Johann

    @ henri
    sorry for not answering you but i have not been able to access the internet for the last days. anyways my iphone worked with version 3.0 as i have had an unlocked version. i was stupid and updated everything forgetting that i have an unlocked iphone. so the update crashed my unlock.
    there i am trying to downgrade now back again to 3.0 but everytime i select the downloaded firmware iphone1,2_3.0_7A341 i get an error saying "wrong firmware bundle selected" and i downloaded this firmware from various websites…
    i thought i follow the 17 steps from above with only different firmware?!?!

    any clue what i am doing wrong?


  • Niklas

    I have an iPhone 3g 05.11. I do not know which broadband I have – dunno how to check?

    I am currently in the US using AT&T but I would like to take my precious iPhone to Europe in a few months and be able to use any carrier there.
    What should I do? Jailbreak/unlock – I am new to the iPhone world!

    Thanks in advance for your help

  • Van de Lay Industries

    Simply AMAZING!!

    Thank you so much – your tutorial could not be better. My iphone 3G is now jailbroken and unlocked. Awesome dude, I really appreciate it.

    Greeting from the UK.

  • Walo

    A question /
    i have iphone 3gs i take it new but befor jailbreak any older vertion im undate 3.1 so now plz tell me does it have any way to jailbreak or not? im listen if u had not jailbreak the version 3.0 so u can’t jailbreak the 3.1 is it true?

    plz send my answer to e-mail thanks

  • Jason

    does the link on post #17 lock the baseband 3g running 3.0.1

  • Eric

    What is the difference between activating and not activating in pwnage? Im on ATT with the 4.26.08 Modem Firmware checked “activate” I had to still had install ultrasn0w to get signal.

    Im confused?? is my phone unlocked or not? the only reason I would need an unlock is to be able to go to Mexico and use a prepaid phone’s simcard instead or roaming.

    so would need not need to activate for a successful unlock? or am I good to go.

  • zeek


    i live in Jordan, and our iphone contracts are by Orange,now i got the iphone 3g from the states, and im trying to put my orange line on it. im using pwnage 3.1
    the problem is when i finish jailbreak if i choose to activate ti through i tunes and put the orange sim in itunes tells me the i have inserted an incorrect sim card, if i jail break it and unlock it through Ultrasn0w and insert the Orange sim it says no sim inserted, can anyone help please….

  • henri

    @ Jason,

    Yes, it keeps the baseband preserved, so you can use Ultrasn0w

  • henri

    @ Zeek,

    You need to Pwnage in “advanced” mode and choose activate phone, make SURE you do not update
    the baseband or you will not be able to unlock it with Ultrasn0w after you jailbreak your phone

  • henri

    @ Erik,

    If you have an official carrier (like AT&T) then you do not HAVE to activate your phone, but don’t worry it cannot harm if you did, activation is only to bypass the procedure in Itunes for new phones. you always
    have to install the unlock afterwards (Ultrasn0w) ~~ so, you are ready to go, have a nice trip

  • henri

    @ Walo

    Google ” Blackra1n” and feel happy ~~ your jailbreak just came reality

  • henri

    @ Johann

    did you do a standard restore trough Itunes ?? hope not…….if it updated your phone to 3.1 then
    you have also updated your baseband… and no unlock for now

  • Johann

    in deed i screwed up big time. updated trough itunes and ruined everything. any chance for me to get my phone working again?

  • henri

    Not in a normal way.. for now only a piggyback simcard can help you, or you have to wait till there is a way to downgrade your baseband.. sorry man ., which provider are you using??

  • Johann

    shit! using german vodafone… do you think there will be someway anytime soon to downgrade? what’s a piggyback simcard?

  • henri

    @ Johan

    Such a thing like “rebelsim ” but to be honest, got bad experience with those things, never got stable
    signal… so it’s actually not usable where I live, too many towers.

    Be sure to do your homework, there are many different brands of those cards~

  • Johann

    ok thanks,
    i guess i have to way until someone comes up with a way to fix my phone…
    many thanks anyways

  • zeek

    thanx for the help but i tried that and when i insert the Orange sim in the iphone it searches and then i get no signal,,,,, Orange in Jordan is the official carrier for iphone i Jordan but the iphone is not from Jordan.

  • Eric

    @ Henri

    Thanks! BTW the only reason I had to upgrade to 3.1 from 3.0 is because it got bricked with Blackra1n it just kept rebooting after the appe logo… Im using a 32gig 3GS. I miss tethering 🙁

  • henri

    @ Zeek,

    Check what baseband you have, Settings > general> about, you can see it at the bottom of that page. If the version you have is higher than 4.26, then it will not work…sorry

  • zeek

    i have an iphone that is working on orange i got it through a Orange,,,,with a contract and,,, i checked the baseband on it and is 4.26.08

    i dont understand why the one i got through a contract would work,,,and getting one from another country wouldnt..

  • zeek

    the 4.26.08 is the modem number,,,,, the carrier is Orange Jordan 4.1

  • zeek

    the iphone im trying to jailbreak has the following Modem number 5.11.07

  • zeek

    thank you henri i figured it out,,,, and i tried to downgrade the baseband using fuzzyabnd but the bootloader is higher the 5.8 so basically im screwed, anyhow thanx for the help,,i guess i have to wait until ultrasn0w unlocks higher basebands

  • Hi,

    I can’t actually open the pwnage tool. I downloaded iPhone1,2_3.1_7C144_Restore.ipsw because I have an iPhone 3GS, and every time I try to open it (i.e. Step #3) it just opens iTunes but nothing else happens. What am I doing wrong?

    Sorry, I’m really bad at this kind of stuff. Thank you for the tutorial and I hope someone can help!

  • Sorry, that didn’t make sense. I am trying to open PwnageTool (using uTorrent), it has downloaded, but when I double click it, nothing happens and it doesn’t open!

  • henri

    @ Leia

    Pwnagetool is MAC only…. you have a MAC ??


    i jailbroke my phone using blackrain and it messed up my voicemail password and my email accounts and it took wifi completely off. when will the have jailbreak for pc using pwnage tool?

  • Hi
    I buy a second hand iphone 3g and the previos owner update it via itunes to version 3.1.2, Now the phone was locked and i have open it with blackra1n that was released, and it open it but now when i insert my sim-card (orang) He dosent work sims like its unrecognize it,
    Do you have any suggestion ? and i tray pwnage tools and he do not help me , HELP

  • Aman

    i hav iphone 3g with modem firmware of 02.28.00 and uses yellowsn0w to activate network.
    which firmware bundle, should i use with pwnage tool.
    i hav tried many, but error shows up sayin wrong bundle selected.

    help needed.

  • Theo Knegtel

    I have an Iphone 3g and updated it using pwnage tool and then unlocking it using ultrasnow. Everything works fine but now my battery is running out within 2 hours.

    Does anybody have an idea how to solve this?


  • rob

    my iphone 3g has no sim in it yet but want to unlock it eventually. so im jailbreaking it for now. does it matter if i go through the jailbreaking process without the at&t sim card in it?

  • callum

    is there a viral risk for either the computer or tthe phone