A DFU restore is the deepest type of restore that you can do with an iPhone, and it’s the last resort for any Apple technician when there’s some software problem that they can’t solve.

If you think there’s a hardware problem with your iPhone, it’s a good idea to DFU restore it first. If you are reading this article, you’re are probably trying to jailbreak your iPhone, which is totally fine. Or maybe you just want to put a different version of iOS onto your iPhone.

What You Need to Know About DFU Mode

Before putting your iPhone into DFU mode, make sure you backup your iPhone first. What you need to know about DFU restores is that the process is a little bit different for the iPhone 6s and below and iPhone 7 and above.

On the iPhone 6s and below, you need to use the power button and the home button. With the iPhone 7 and above, you’re going to be using the power button and the volume down button.

That’s because, with the iPhone 7, Apple created a new home button that isn’t a physical button. So they needed something that they could actually click in order to turn the phone off.

Put an iPhone 7 & Above into DFU Mode

1. Connect your iPhone to a PC

2. Hold the power button and the volume down button together for 5 seconds until the screen goes black

3. If you see the Apple logo, you’ve held them too long and will need to start again

4. Then, let go of the power button and keep holding the volume down button

5. If you see the “Plug into iTunes” message, then you’ve held it down for too long and you need to start again

6. If the screen stays black, your iPhone is in DFU mode.

Put an iPhone 6 & Below Into DFU Mode

1. Hold the power button and the home button-down together

2. Then, let go of the power button and keep holding the home button

3. If you see the Apple logo, you’ve held them too long and will need to start again

4. Then, let go of the power button and keep holding the home button down together

5. If you see the “Plug into iTunes” message, then you’ve held it down for too long and you need to start again

6. If the screen stays black, your iPhone is in DFU mode

On your PC, you’ll receive a pop up which says “iTunes has the iPhone in recovery mode, you must restore the iPhone before it can be used with iTunes”.

Remember, if you see anything on your iPhone screen (iTunes logo) apart from a black screen, you’re not in DFU mode.

The only way to be sure that you’re in DFU mode is if it shows up in iTunes. It says it detects an iPhone and your screen is completely black. There are no exceptions to this rule.

How to Update Your iPhone in DFU Mode

If you just click the restore button, and this is probably what most people want to do, iTunes will ask if you sure you want to restore your phone to its factory settings. If you proceed, everything will be erased and then the newest version of the iPhone software will be installed onto your iPhone.

iTunes will go to Apple servers and it download the most recent version of the iPhone operating system. This can take 10-20 minutes depending on your internet connection and then it’ll DFU restore your phone for another 10-15 minutes, depending on your phone.

How to Restore Files in DFU Mode

If you’re jailbreaking your phone, doing something nefarious, or you’re running a beta of iOS, you need to do something a little bit differently.

You’ll need to go ahead and download the restore file by itself from the Apple server.

There’s a little trick for Mac and a little trick for PC to restore files.

1. On a Mac, hold the option key. On a PC, hold the Shift key

2. While you’re doing that, click on restore iPhone and instead of popping up with the iTunes little box, it asks if you want to restore it their way

3. Your file explorer will open so choose the file from here

You’ll receive another pop up saying “iTunes will erase and remove your iPhone to iOS and will verify the version with Apple”. Hit restore.

This is going to take a while to bear with it. Once the restore process starts, you’re going to see the Apple logo appear on the screen with a little status bar progress bar in the bottom.

Don’t get your hopes up when the progress bar finishes because another progress bar will pop up. Once this is done, your phone will turn on and it will be on the welcome screen.