iPhone Goes Into Recovery Mode After Update (Windows)

There has been an issue with the recent iPhone update where it leaves the phone in Recovery Mode. Here are some steps that have been known to fix this problem for Windows users:

1. Disconnect your iPhone from the computer.

2. Restart the computer.

3. Connect the iPhone to the computer.

4. Select Install Drivers Later on the dialog that appears.

5. Hold down the Windows Key and press R.

6. Type devmgmt.msc and click OK.

7. Right-click Apple Mobile Device listed under Other Devices and then select Properties.

8. Select Browse…

9. Point it to C:\Program Files\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support and click OK.

The install should finish and your iPhone should now be all good.


  1. ash says

    it has worked for me on itunes i updated to the latest software available and its allowed me to restore the phone


  2. Meagen says

    Please help me i havent saved any of the pictures or contacts on my phone and i was updating the software and then it tells me to restore and has the ITunes symbol and the cord.. Did i loose all my pictures?
    Meagen :(

  3. megan says

    hey, so i updated my iphone through itunes and now its stuck on a picture with a usb plug to connect with my itunes. but when i connect it my itunes, my iphone does not pop up.. i need some help ASAP! i tried all of the steps listed above but it still says, windows could not find driver software for my device… any suggestions?

  4. Nazrie says

    Basically, your phone has the back up alrd. if ur uprgrading from 4.2.1 to ios5, try disconnecting yr phone frm the driver thats unable to detect the Apple Mobile Support, and connect it to another driver (any other laptop or computer with itunes) once the driver has alrd detects the apple mobile support thingy, connect it to itunes and restore it, once done, disconnect yr phone and on it. follow up with the ios5 procedure, and they will ask u if u wanna back ur phone up from itunes or icloud. plug ur phone in the computer where ur back up is, open up itunes, back it up, and its done!

  5. Ryan says

    im in the same sinking boat as all of you, my iPhone 3GS went into recovery mode this morning after tying to update to 5.0 but now when i try to reinstal the drivers the actual driver folder is gone! i phone apple about the problem and guess what? they dont even know what is wrong with my phone!! they have no clue why this is happening they also have no idea how to counter it..

  6. Leila says

    Hi there,
    This has happened several times to me after updating to different versions, easiest way is to redownload and update on another computer but because I am impatient and couldn’t wait this is what I did:

    For windows 7:
    1) unplug iPhone
    2) make sure iTunes is up to date (update if required)
    3) full computer shut down
    4) start computer
    5) open iTunes
    6) restore again

    Sorry I know this has been covered but I did a restart many times and that didn’t work, I had to completely shut down my computer and start again, something to do with the iTunes updates I think

  7. doug says

    same for me. brand new iphone 4 today, went to upgrade to latest iOS and stuck for hours in recovery mode.

  8. Sam Thiele says

    I have read all the work arounds and problems, this worked for me:

    1.Open the Device Manager and connect your device. Click the View menu and select “Devices by connection”.

    2.Locate the erroneous “Apple Mobile Device (Recovery Mode)” entries. You may need to expand all sections of the Device Manager to see them.

    3.Directly above these entries will be a USB Composite Device entry.

    Depending on your version of Windows, take the following steps to update this driver:
    For Windows XP

    1.Right-click the parent USB Composite Device entry and choose Update Driver from the shortcut menu.

    2.If asked to connect to Windows Update to search for software, choose “No, not this time” and click Next.

    3.Choose “Install from a list or specific location (Advanced)” and click Next.

    4.Choose “Don’t search. I will choose the driver to install” and click Next.

    5.Click the Have Disk button. In the “Install from Disk” dialog, click the Browse button.

    6.Use this window to navigate to the following folder: C:\Program Files\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support\Drivers.

    7.Double-click the usbaapl file, which is listed in this folder. Click OK on the “Install from Disk” dialog.

    8.Click Next and finish the driver installation steps. Open iTunes to verify that the device is recognized properly, and continue restoring your device.

  9. rienzi says

    I tried to follow the instructions but I could not find step 7. instead I found apple iphone at image services and I could not find a browse bar after i click properties.

    please help.

  10. RJ says

    @S May
    Were u able to restore back your iphone.
    i am in the same state.
    can you post some help

  11. S May says

    I have an iphone 4 not jailbroken that I updated to 4.3 using iTunes. It got stuck in recovery mode. I tried Recboot, Tiny Umbrella, and finally FixRecovery, in an effort to save my media (didn’t have a service agreement then). Nothing worked. So I tried to restore it and it still won’t work, just gives error messages (1013, 20000, 14, 1603, 1604)at the point of “restoring firmware”. Since I used FixRecovery and it appeared to have written pages of commands to C prompt but it literally gave up and didn’t finish, does that mean that all of those commands are still on there? Will it appear jailbroken if I take it to an Apple store? After all of this and I still don’t have a useable phone, I talked to the guys at tech support (without mentioning Recboot, Tiny Umbrella, or FixRecovery, of course), they were stumped and told me to take it to a Apple store. If it doesnt’ appear to void the warranty, they’ll switch it out with another phone for me but I don’t know if what I’ve done already will show up and void the warranty. I don’t necessarily want to jailbreak it to fix it except as a very last resort (as in the warranty is voided). I don’t think I’ll EVER update again. I’ve had it all of three months and this was the first update I’d done (and probably the last!).

  12. Tom E from Joppa says

    Travis Joles from October 6th was right on the money.
    With the latest update Apple made my ITouch locked up. I am using Windows Vista and it looks like they replaced the Apple Mobile Device USB Driver with an old 2006 version.
    The steps you need to take is go under the Universal Serial Bus controllers and highlight the Apple Mobile Device USB Driver and go to Update Driver Software. If it is not there right click your and “Scan for Hardware Changes”. Once completed your ITunes will see it and start the recovery.

  13. MArwa says

    the problem at my end, is that the PC itself ca n recognise it as a new hardware when plugged in and says “apple mobile device (recovery mode)” and prompts me to install it by either looking for an update online, or installing automatically or manually as an advanced option, either way, it wont install or find the required software as it says at the end.
    and during all this time, itunes cannot see the iphone.

  14. Walter Jones says

    I have the same problem as you. Only in my situation my itunes recognizes my iphone. I can restore it, however I have 7 gigs worth of media on my phone and I am afraid of losing it. I noticed you were able to recover your contacts, but were you able to restore your media?

  15. Travis Joles says

    Hi. here’s how I fixed mine, when it got stuck during an update. I’m pretty good with a computer, but for those who aren’t, I’ll try to explain this in a very simple fashion.

    My Iphone 4 got stuck just a few minutes ago, after doing an update from 4.1 to 4.2. It gave, I believe, an error message of 1602. It was displaying the “Connect to Itunes” logo on the Iphone screen when the download failed, and that logo was stuck on the screen, and would not come off. I tried a hard reboot by holding the home button, and the On/Off button until it rebooted, but it kept rebooting as the “Connect To Itunes” logo. When I plugged it back in to my computer, and opened Itunes, it did not recognize my Iphone at all, and no USB pop-ups appeared recognizing it as well. I am running Windows XP just to clarify. I hit the Start button, right clicked on My Computer, and then clicked Manage. Some people have to click “Start”, then right click on “My Computer”, then click “Properties”, then click “Hardware”, then click “Device Manager”. Once in the device Manager, I opened “Universal Serial Bus Controllers” at the very bottom by clicking the + sign to the very left of that name “+ Universal Serial Bus Controllers”, and saw that there was no USB logo followed by “Apple Mobile Device USB Driver” anywhere in the current driver listing.

    I then right clicked on the main “+ Universal Serial Bus Controllers” wording (the same wording that has the + sign next to it you click to collapse it down, and show all your current drivers), and clicked “Scan For Hardware Changes”. Within a few seconds it found the driver for the Iphone, and then Itunes picked it up, and then told me the Iphone was stuck in Recovery mode. Once I clicked OK, my only option was a restore back to the original setting. I clicked restore, and it worked! Back to life again. :) Once it was restored, I was able to reset to my last restore point, and I got all of my contacts back, but I did lose my apps, so I had to re-download them. I didn’t mind as much as losing my Iphone, and having to swap it for a refurbished one, which is the only option, if you can’t get out of the locked screen. Hope this helps someone else, if Itunes won’t recognize your Iphone once it get’s stuck in recovery mode. Regards, Travis Joles

  16. steph says

    hi can someone help me i am having similar problems, i tried to update my 3gs to 4.0.1 on windows 7 and it has gone into recovery mode. i have tried to reinstall drivers and also tried it on another computer which is a Mac but with no joy its continuously coming up with error code 29 saying it cant be restored. please help!!

  17. Butch says

    It happened to me twice (4.0.1 & 4.1).
    The best solution in any case is to use another PC (some USB controller seem to be not compatible with iBoot recovery mode driver). This will avoid wasting hours in trying itunes re-installations and drivers download.

    @ab : I am afraid you can’t (at least without blood and tears :-)). But try another PC (preferably known as supporting recovery mode USB driver) and everything should return OK.

  18. awais says

    Hey guyz give me an answer

    I have iphone 3gs and i am from Pakistan

    her no sim card support itunes

    3.1.3 is running in my iphone

    i want to update it 4.0.1

    tell me when i will start to update my iphone

    will it go on recovery mode after completing updating

    plz give me answer of it

  19. Ary says

    I had the same problem and I fixed it.
    I had to use other computer. I´ve installed Itunes 10 and made a System Restore to my Ipod Touch. Then, with my Ipod Touch clean, I`ve conected it to my computer. The problem was fixed but I lost some information that doesn´t have backup (score`s games, some programs records, etc).

  20. Michael says

    I just had a similar problem as this, turns out that WindowsXP was getting itself in a knot with the drivers that were required for the iPhone when it’s in recovery mode (which are different to those for it in normal mode).

    Answer was as below – I found it helpful to keep the device manager window open until I was up and running again as I also had to re-install update the driver for the phone in normal mode before everything was back to “normal”.


  21. Huyen says

    I’ve just bought my iPod touch 3g today… and after I had made an update it went to recovery mode… I did all you said.. I won’t help.

  22. Sam says

    I NEED HELP!!!!This is the secand time my ipod went into recovery mode and last time i had to restore it!!I tried everything and got angry so i just restored it!!I don’t want to do that again.PLEASE HELP

  23. Andy says

    The fix for this is on the apple website:


    Easiest way seems to be to restore the iPhone just by plugging it into another computer that has iTunes installed. Once restored, the iPhone will work fine with the original computer.

    Worked for me last night, updating a 3GS to OS4!

  24. sultan says

    hello im from saudi arabia, i need your help!!! i have unlocked iphone 3g a gift from one of my friend without my knowledge i tried to update to version 4.0 via itunes. i left my iphone while updating. when i came back i saw my iphone screen the itunes logo and the iphone cable which emergency call can be allowed. i tried many times to reset it, go to recovery mode and reset again, restore via itunes but goes back to the itunes logo and cable,i tried ireb to out from recovery mode but failed,until i fade up. pls anything you can say? pls help. ty

  25. Hayleigh says

    I’ve got this same issue. I updated my iPhone 4 to 4.0.1, and I went through these steps. However, the device isn’t being recognised, and the 5th step comes up with a “windows cannot find driver software for this device”. Is there any specific file I could use that I could direct to? I use a Windows Vista operating system, and need help asap.


  26. FSK says

    I had the same problem and my laptop could not locate the correct driver (Iphone 4 Recovery mode), after 4 hours of researching, both forums and apple help nothing worked. I even downloaded Recboot, that didnt work either. I tried on my home pc and that didnt work, finally i tried it on a friends laptop and it worked on that. I believe some laptops / pc’s are unable to locate the recovery mode driver. If you really get stuck just pop down to any Apple store.
    Hope this helps

    Ps: Both my laptop and pc are AMD processors, and my friends laptop where the update worked was a Intel Centrino.

  27. Ramsden33 says

    same problem with my touch. desktop is xp and laptop is windows 7 and just plugged it into the laptop and looks like its restoring itself and gonna be alright

  28. umbecki says

    my computer runs XP and as most of you i bricked my iphone on the os4 update. i tried everything above, nothing worked, i then tried plugging it into my daughters net book (windows 7) and it recognised the recovery mode straight away.

  29. Hemant says

    Its been frustrating for me to search for an appropriate solution in getting my iPhone usable since I tried this dreaded OS4 update. The iTunes screen has just stuck on the phone for eternity while all recommendations from the web have been tried… I even downloaded the dlls mentioned in one of the strings above, but the iTunes icon wouldn’t budge… can someone please help?

  30. Jon says

    For those running Windows XP and having issues with the device asking for recovery mode drivers, try a different computer.

    I bricked my Touch doing the OS4 update and couldn’t restore using the desktop. Decided to try it on my laptop and it was recognised as a recovery mode device straight away.

  31. ES says

    Keep in mind that the “Connect to iTunes” icon on your Apple device probably means that the damage is done and a restoration is in order. And there ain’t any way to go back from that. You’ll have to restore, hopefully off of an existing backup. The good news is, the update may have already downloaded and will install itself once you restore. That’s what happened to me.

  32. Jeni says

    For those of you whose iphones went into recovery mode after trying to update to iOS4…try this.

    Create a new user on your pc, log in as that user and open up itunes. Plug in your phone. The restore should work from there. This is apple’s work around.

    If itunes is not recognising your phone at all (as it didnt with mine) first try unplugging the phone and then plugging it in again. If that doesnt work you need to uninstall and then re-install itunes. This has to be done in a specific order. If you have a look on http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1923, that gives you the order to do things.

    Worked for me.

  33. Alex says

    Hi. Same problem here. I’ve got vista 32bit, no driver found, iPhone stuck in recovery mode. Help please!!!

  34. julie says

    Can someone pls help?? My phone is stuck in recovery mode and I can seem to follow the above steps. I dont have the option to reinstall drivers!

  35. Julie says

    Can someone pls help!! My phone is also stuck in recovery mode with a pic asking me to plug it into itunes.. Ive tried folling the instructions but as im a bit daft when it comes to these things i dont understand them.. Can someone pls explain in simple terms how i can fix my phone?? I have windows xp also no windows button on my keyboard so i was lost right away!! Thanks

  36. Aseem says

    I got the same problem. I tried to update my ipodtouch 3.1.3 to 4 but suddenly it went to recovery mode. I tried reinstalling the driver but it is not working. Kindly help.

  37. ES says

    First remove iTunes, QuickTime, Bonjour and all related
    Apple programs listed in “Add/Remove programs”. Then reboot your pc. Then reinstall iTunes. At any time when the “Found New Hardware” wizard pops up manually search for the drivers mentioned above using the above path. The two drivers, usbappl.sys and usbapplrc.dll should either be/and be in the Windows/system32 folder. That should work.

  38. I hate os4 says

    I just tried unsuccessfully to upgrade to iOS4 on my 3Gs but it got stuck I’ve tried the direction but it didn’t work can some please help me

  39. yazdissapointed says

    sigh….i got the same prob yall…tried to update my ipodtouch 3.12 to 4 but suddenly went to recovery mode…my ipod screen now only shows the usb -> itunes picture…tried the above method but they say they cant find the driver software for my device…please anyone anyhelp….i really stressed out bout it

  40. amber says

    Hey, I’ve tried this about five times and it doesn’t work for my iPod Touch. I have Windows Vista and when I try it always says “Windows could not find driver software for your device” Is there possibly another solution? My sister brought this to the Apple store yesterday because I had this problem and they gave me a new one, but as soon as I upgrade it, i get the same thing.

  41. b@r says

    hei..i have the same problem also.. stuck in recovery mode when updating ipod touch software.. please help!!!

  42. james jon says

    i’m using XP and using itunes lates update but i cant find C:\Program Files\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support

  43. Rob says

    What a hopeless bit of software! Cannot see my brick iphone. USB no longer shows the device as available. Apple could learn a trick or two from snom – they upgrade their phones all the time and never a problem, fall back works if there are download problems.
    Now I have a $200.00 paper weight!! – disgusted, no idea how to fix, I guess a trip to AT&T and see what they can do.
    I’ll be real pleased if all my data is gone!! NOT
    Where does itunes hide all the stuff they download?
    Why do you need itunes to deal with iphone? never did want itunes it splashes itself all over the computer, tries to take total control over all my sound and music – and all I want is to backup my iphone and get the latest upgrade to my iphone.

  44. Darrylemoonman says

    Hi i tried the steps above, my iphone is still stuck in recovery mode, and when i select the above folder to search for with the drivers, it still cant find any, is there some where i should download these drivers from ? or some other steps that need to occur ? more information would be greatly appreciated

  45. mostafa says

    hey i fixed it just update ur itunes player and then restore with the 3.0 firmware it will work :)

  46. mostafa says

    i have the same exact problem when i updated my iphone 3g to os 3.0 i got stuck in the recovery mode with the connect to itunes on the iphone screen and i cant seem to find anything that works … except i read on a certin site that in order to update the 3.0 firmware u have to be using itunes 8.2 so im gona give it a try and let u know if it works :-)

  47. cardsdrummer says

    I also have this problem. The above steps didn’t work though. I would appreciate any additional help.

  48. Stuart says

    My iPhone 3G is stuck in recovery mode with the iTunes logo fixed on my screen asking to be connected. I tried the steps above but got stuck at the first part as there wasn’t a dialog box asking about the drivers…. help!! :(

  49. pinoyka says

    did anybody find a solution? my iPhone is stuck in Recovery Mode.
    When I follow the steps: b) After you enter the Apple Mobile Device Properties window, click ‘Reinstall Drivers’, then click ‘Browse’
    c) The Drivers are actually located in C:Program FilesCommon FilesAppleMobile Device Supportdrivers

    Windows Visa doesn’t find any drivers….

  50. Bryana says

    i upgraded mine today – and it wasnt jail broken – now it just sits there with the itunes logo – it keeps asking to install a reovery driver – what do i do?

    i really need this fixed

  51. Bryan says

    i upgraded mine today – and it wasnt jail broken – now it just sits there with the itunes logo – it keeps asking to install a reovery driver – what do i do?

  52. J Cooke says

    You missed a couple substeps that the “average user” may not know how to catch:

    Under XP:
    a) Hit ‘Cancel’, there is no “Install Drivers Later” option
    b) After you enter the Apple Mobile Device Properties window, click ‘Reinstall Drivers’, then click ‘Browse’
    c) The Drivers are actually located in C:\Program Files\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support\drivers

  53. Ugg Bootsfind the necessary software" says

    I tried the above solution and I still have no joy – it says “the hardware was not installed because the wizzard cannot find the necessary software”

    Any Thoughts?

  54. suzy says

    Are there instructions to achieve the same result on a Mac? My phone is stuck in recovery mode after an iYunes update.

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