How to put iPhone in DFU mode: A simple guide

Putting your iPhone into DFU (Device Firmware Update) mode can be your last hope to get it back on track.

how to put iphone in dfu mode

This is a step-by-step guide on how to put iPhone in DFU mode.

People that have problems with their iPhones tend to do two things:

First, they’ll do a hard reset that can fix problems like iPhone frozen screen.

Second, if they’re tech savvy, they’ll perform a DFU restore on their iPhones to update or change the firmware and iOS.

But you’re probably wondering:

“How do I put my iPhone into DFU mode?”

Whether you want to jailbreak, restore from firmware, or troubleshoot an iOS device from DFU, this step-by-step guide will walk you through the steps.

What is DFU mode?

DFU mode, which stands for Device Firmware Update, is the last step to troubleshooting any problems your iPhone may have—from your iPhone charging issues to when your iPhone won’t power on, etc.

iPhone detected in recovery mode
Screenshot: Herby Jasmin/Gotechtor

DFU mode is available on any iOS device, which includes the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Look you can’t change the firmware or operating system on the device while it’s running. That’s where DFU mode comes in handy because the OS is not booted on the device even though it’s powered on.

You should note this process may vary depending on what version of iPhone you’re using. iPhones have evolved over the years, some have a Home button, others don’t. Whether the iPhone has a Home button will determine what route you should take to enter your iPhone into DFU mode the right way.

Warning: A DFU mode will erase all the data on your device, that’s why it’s critical to backup your iPhone to iCloud or iTunes before you start with this procedure. Without further ado let’s dive in.

How to put iPhone in DFU mode

iPhone SE connected to Mac via lightning cable

You’ll need a few things before you can put your iPhone into DFU mode:

  • Mac or Windows PC with iTunes installed on it
  • Lightning to USB cable
  • Your iPhone

Now connect your iPhone to your computer using your lightning to USB cable and open iTunes. Make sure you’re using the latest version of iTunes on your PC or Mac. Your iPhone doesn’t have to be off, it’s unnecessary.

On iPhone SE, 6s and earlier

Apple iPhone 6s
  1. Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button and the Home button for about 8 seconds.
  2. Now let go of the Sleep/Wake button while continuing to hold down the Home button until a dialog prompt appears on your computer saying “iTunes has detected an iPhone in recovery mode”.

On iPhone 7, 7 Plus

Apple iPhone 7
  1. Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button and the Volume Down button.
  2. Keep holding both buttons for about 8 seconds.
  3. Finally, release the Sleep/Wake button while continuing to hold down the Volume Down button until iTunes says “iTunes has detected an iPhone in recovery mode”.

On iPhone 8, 8 Plus, X, and Newer Devices

Apple iPhone 11 Pro
  1. Quickly press and release the Volume Up button
  2. Quickly press and release the Volume Down button
  3. Press and hold down the Side button until the screen goes black.
  4. Hold down the Volume Down button while continuing to hold the Side button
  5. After 5 seconds, release the Side button while continuing to hold down the Volume Down button until your iPhone shows up in iTunes
  6. As soon as your iPhone appears in iTunes, release the Volume button

At the end of this process, your iPhone screen should be completely black. A black screen is how you’ll know your iPhone is in DFU mode.

If you see the “Connect to iTunes” logo, Apple logo or anything else, you will need to retry these steps because your iPhone is not in DFU mode. You probably have held the buttons too long. When your iPhone enters DFU mode, they will be nothing on the screen.

If you learned how to put your iPhone into DFU mode, please share this article on your favorite social media, so your friends can benefit from it too.

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