Last night, we regaled you with the jolting tale of our attempt to upgrade an iPhone 4 to iOS 5. Today, the trouble continues with the iPad.
Our new nemesis: error -48. Apple’s iOS 5 upgrade fiasco, by no means unique to our devices, strikes again.
We tried to upgrade this iPad last night, but woke to find that the upgrade had failed with no error message to tell us why. Today, as iTunes tried to upgrade it again, we had to pause the Restore Music and Videos function in order to switch locations — an option that Apple makes easy to select, with no warnings.
When we resumed, we saw the “Error -48″ pictured above, for which Apple advises the following:
Error 48 (or -48): Quit iTunes and discard the .ipsw file. Then, open iTunes and attempt to download again. See the steps under the heading “Rename, move, or delete the iOS software file (.ipsw)” below for .ipsw file locations.
Here we go again. We clicked OK, only to be confronted by more bad news:
Undeterred, we followed Apple’s advice: quit iTunes, delete that .ipsw file, and try again. Scrolling down the page to the Advanced section on Apple’s support page, we note the following:
Rename, move, or delete the iOS software file (.ipsw)
iTunes uses “ipsw” files to restore your iPod or iPhone. If those files are unusable, then try deleting them, renaming them, or moving the file to a different directory. This will cause iTunes to download a new copy of the IPSW. When a restore issue is specific to a user, it is likely due to an unusable .ipsw file. If removing the .ipsw file does not resolve a user-specific restore issue, then the issue is caused by other user-specific security software settings or iTunes preferences. Creating a new user will also cause new .ipsw restore files to be downloaded in the new user. You can find the “.ipsw” files in these locations:
Mac OS X
iPhone ~/Library/iTunes/iPhone Software Updates
iPad ~/Library/iTunes/iPad Software Updates
iPod touch ~/Library/iTunes/iPod Software Updates
Note: The tilde “~” represents your Home directory.
(For other operating systems, you can find the locations here if you scroll down far enough then open the Advanced menu.)
We found the offending .ipsw file and moved it to a different location as Apple requested, so that iTunes can download another one, despite our fear that this will mean iTunes won’t be able to restore our apps, music, and videos. This is all starting to feel very Microsoft.
We fired up iTunes again, and it asked us whether we want to continue to Restore. Of course we do.
The iPad’s screen says “Restore in Progress,” which is hopeful. Sure enough, iTunes says the iPad’s settings have been restored:
We selected “Continue Restore.” This looks good, but we wonder whether our stuff will really return to the iPad, given that we moved that .ipsw file based on Apple’s advice (especially since our music disappeared from our iPhone during last night’s upgrade):
Hey, that’s cool. We’ve seen this error before. All hope is not lost:
Our apps are syncing back onto the upgraded iPad. This is good news — we take it to mean that Apple had already backed up .ipsw to its servers, because otherwise, how would iTunes know what to put back on our iPad? So, in a sense, iCloud has already been handling iOS backups:
Here come the photos:
And “just like that,” we’re done — both iPhone and iPad are now running iOS 5:
Errors 3004 and -48 will continue to haunt our dreams, but we have finally managed to upgrade Apple’s devices to Apple’s new mobile operating system using Apple software and an Apple computer… a mere 22 hours later.