appleiphone3GI’ve recently unlocked three 2G iPhone at OS 3.1.2 using a MacBook Pro. I did this because my family are not AT&T customers, and since we’re all talking to each other, we need to be on the same network. I don’t think this process is all ┬áthat helpful to enterprise users since the hassle of unlocking is large enough that it is not scalable for hundreds or thousands of mobile users.

The phones got to OS 3.1.2 by ‘restoring’ the software to factory settings using iTunes 9.0.2.

There are two basic software processes involved – the jailbreak process – and the unlock process. The jailbreak process intercepts the proprietary link between the iPhone, the App store and the iTunes application on the MacBook Pro and inserts an alternative App Store on the iPhone. Called, Cydia, the alternative store enables applications that Apple doesn’t approve of, like the app that disrupts the exclusive network arrangement in the US. Unlocking lets an iPhone customer use the iPhone with another GSM network such as T-Mobile.

The process involves connecting the iPhone to the MacBook Pro using the USB cable which stimulates the iTunes application on the Mac requesting a sync-up. Usually the iTunes notices that the SIM card is not supported or that the iPhone is missing a SIM card and an alert box pops up. Ignoring that makes the iphone fall out of the iTunes window.

I did a ‘jailbreak’ on the iPhone first using the blackra1n utility. Running this application on a Mac, connecting the iPhone via USB and clicking the one button on the app pushes the Cydia app onto the iPhone, bypassing the App Store. Engage Cydia and search for the BootNeuter app.

I set BootNeuter to 4.6, neuter and unlock, chose Flash It and was told that I had to restart the iPhone so that the CommCenter wouldn’t interfere. Restarted iPhone and set BootNeuter to 4.6, neuter and unlock, chose Flash it and was told not to interrupt. A success screen recommended waiting while it checked settings and it hung there for a good 10 minutes.

I restarted the iPhone and it would not accept the non-AT&T SIM card.

I set BootNeuter to 3.9, neuter and unlock, chose Flash It and was told that I had to restart the iPhone so that the CommCenter wouldn’t interfere. Restarted iPhone and set BootNeuter to 4.6, neuter and unlock, chose Flash it and was told not to interrupt. A success screen recommended waiting while it checked settings and it hung there for a good 10 minutes. Restarted iPhone and tried new SIM card. Worked perfectly.

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