Developer-registered iOS devices cannot be restored to older iOS releases

Number:rdar://11088049 Date Originated:20-Mar-2012 08:12 PM
Status:Duplicate Resolved:
Product:iPhone/iPod touch Product Version:3.0+
Classification:Serious Bug Reproducible:Always
iOS devices cannot be restored to iOS versions prior to the latest releases. However, this is necessary for iOS app testing. Therefore, registered developer devices should be allowed to do this.

Steps to Reproduce:
 - Register a device in the iOS Provisioning Portal.
 - Use Xcode or iTunes to attempt to restore this device to a release of iOS before the latest.
 - Note that an error is received, and this is not possible.

Expected Results:
Developer iOS devices should be able to be restored to iOS versions prior to the latest release.

Actual Results:
They are not able to be restored to prior iOS releases.

This was added to all devices available after the iPhone 3GS. In addition, the same restriction was added to devices releases prior to the iPhone 3GS when iOS 4 was released.

UPDATE 3/27/12: this was a dupe of rdar://8158924.


Makes no sense!

How can I possibly test against older devices? I spent 3 hours figuring out this was even the case! Crazy! Please allow developer provisioned ios devices to downgrade. It's OK if it blows away any apps/settings for good even.

Serious limitation

This is seroius limitation. Looking forward for Apple reaction.

By artur.ozier at Jan. 17, 2013, 4:04 p.m. (reply...)

Please add it!

By matthias.ziehe at Sept. 21, 2012, 1:27 p.m. (reply...)


At least support one of the three: 1) older simulators; 2) downgrading developer devices; 3) compile time warning for calling newer API methods above target OS.

Yeah, this is just plain ridiculous. As is version signing to begin with.

By james.liddy at May 29, 2012, 6:57 a.m. (reply...)


Please add it, Apple!

Duped as rdar://11137941

Duped as rdar://11115552

I just found out about this problem right after upgrading my 1st gen iPad (that I used for testing on iOS 4) only because I lent it to a friend so that he could try an iPad... headwall

Duped as rdar://11115512

By drodrigueztroitino at March 24, 2012, 10:05 p.m. (reply...)

Duped as rdar://11108792


By andy.warwick at March 23, 2012, 4:53 p.m. (reply...)


Duped as rdar://11104996

I had to actually take an app from the store since you can't test in the simulator under 3.x anymore and my only device still running iOS 3 died recently. The video APIs have changed a lot since 4.x so it was just impossible to maintain. This app was especially made for slower older devices since the full version of that app requires quite some horsepower.

But Apple is in a constant battle with the jailbreak community and might even be contractually required (with their contracts with the carriers) to prevent older hacked versions of iOS be available.

Duped as rdar://11104312

We've needed to be able to do this for a long time, since our primary market is retro games and users on older devices.

Agreed. Please add.

By bubba.spam at March 22, 2012, 8:03 p.m. (reply...)

Duped as rdar://11101492

By abrahamvegh at March 22, 2012, 7:03 p.m. (reply...)

Duped as rdar://1109225

Hope this gets fixed

By truehybridx at March 21, 2012, 6:52 p.m. (reply...)

Duped as rdar://11090208

same need here!

Yes. Sometime I want to test on old iOS version.

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