If your iPhone isn’t working and you’ve tried all the other solutions, you might still be able to fix it using DFU mode. Here’s what you need to know.
Most of the faults your iPhone software will develop can be solved with a few tricks or by resetting it using Recovery mode. On rare occasions, however, those options may not work. Before you search for the nearest Apple repair center, you should try to restore your iPhone using DFU mode instead.
What Is DFU Mode?
DFU stands for Device Firmware Update, and this is a special mode built into the Apple mobile operating system (iOS). It is an advanced recovery mode, as it fixes problems that are found in the firmware as well as the software.
Things to know before putting iPhone in DFU mode
- Make a backup of your device on your computer or iCloud (if possible)
- DFU Restore will also update your device to the latest applicable iOS or iPadOS version
- Don’t try DFU Restore if your device is water-damaged. It may cause more harm than good!
- If your Mac runs macOS Catalina or later, use Finder. If you’re on an earlier version of macOS or Windows PC, use iTunes.
- Use the Lightning or USB-C cable that came with your iPhone or that is certified by Apple.
How to put iPhone 8 or later in DFU Mode
The flagship iPhones like the iPhone 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, and X series have Face ID. Others, including the latest iPhone SE (2020, 2022) and iPhone 8/8 Plus, have a Home button. Still, the process of entering DFU mode is the same on these devices. Here it is:
- Connect your iPhone to a Mac or PC with the USB-C or Lightning cable that came with the device.
- Press and then release the Volume Up button.
- Immediately press and release the Volume Down button.
- Now, press and hold the Side button for 10 seconds.
The screen will go black.
- Keep holding the Side button, and now press the Volume Down button for 5 seconds.
- After 5 seconds, release the Side button but keep holding the Volume Down button.
- Continue pressing the Volume Down button for another 10 seconds.
All this while your iPhone’s screen is black.
- Let go of the Volume Down button after you see a popup in Finder or iTunes that says ‘Your Mac has detected an iPhone in recovery mode. You must restore this iPhone before it can be used.’
- Now, click OK in the pop-up and click Restore iPhone.
Note: If you see the Apple logo or your iPhone restarts, that means one of the steps was not followed correctly. In such a case, carefully read and repeat the process.
How to put iPhone 7 or earlier in DFU Mode
- Connect the iPhone to a Mac or PC with a Lightning cable.
- Press and hold the Power/Sleep button and the Volume down button together for 8–10 seconds.
Note: If the Apple logo appears on the screen, you’ll have to restart the process. Make sure not to hold them for too long.
- Now, release the On/Off Button but keep holding the Volume Down button for about 5 seconds.
Note: If the Plug into Computer notification appears on the screen, you’ll need to start again. Make sure not to hold it for too long.
- Your iPhone will now be in DFU Mode. The screen will be black. You will get an alert from iTunes or Finder saying it has detected your iPhone.
- Select Restore iPhone.
How to exit DFU Mode on any iPhone or iPad
If you change your mind and want to exit DFU mode midway, here’s how to exit DFU mode on the iPhone and iPad.
- To exit DFU mode on iPhone 15, 14, 13, 12, SE 2022/2020, iPhone 11, X series, and iPads with Face ID: Press and then release the Volume Up button. Immediately press and release the Volume Down button. Finally, press and hold the Power/Side button (Top button for iPad) until you see the Apple logo appear on the screen.
- To exit DFU mode on iPhone 7 and 7 Plus: Press and hold the Side power button and the Volume Down button together. Leave both buttons when you see the Apple logo on the screen.
- To exit DFU mode on an iPhone 6s and earlier or an iPad with a Home button: Press and hold the Home button at the front of the device and the Side power button (Top button for iPad) together. Leave the buttons when you see the Apple logo.