How To Reset The iPhone Password

reset-iphone-passcode.png

What happens if you forgot your iPhone passcode and cannot gain access? Perhaps a friend played a prank on you and changed your passcode, or more simply, applied one when you hadn’t been using one at all. You’re effectively locked out of your device with no means to regain access. The only solution for this is to connect to iTunes, put your device in recovery mode and restore it from a backup. Or is it?

In this article, I’ll walk you through restoring your device and resetting your iPhone password (and your entire device effectively), followed by how jailbreakers are again in luck in a scenario like this.

The Conventional Restore

A conventional method of dealing with forgotten passcode is to bypass the lock screen altogether, put your iOS device in recovery mode and restore to default, hereby losing all your precious data in the process (you can also restore from a backup).

how to reset iphone password

Follow the steps below to restore your iPhone and reset the password:

  • Disconnect your iPhone from the PC/Mac. Make sure iTunes is running on your computer
  • Power off the device by pressing and holding the sleep button until ‘Slide to power off‘ appears.
  • Press and hold the ‘Home’ button on your iPhone and while keeping in pressed, reconnect it back to the computer via USB cable.
  • As soon as USB cable is attached, the phone should begin to boot. Keep holding the Home button until an alert message pops up, confirming the detection of an iPhone in recovery mode.

how to reset iphone password

  • In iTunes, select your iPhone and under the Summary tab, hit the Restore button.

By doing so, you’ll be restoring your iPhone to its factory state, hence removing everything including the passcode. From here on, you can either start fresh or restore from a previous backup, which hopefully you’ll already have.

Resetting iPhone Password Without Losing Data – Jailbreak Only

For jailbroken devices, the root access that comes along with a jailbreak can also be very useful in the case the user forgot the iPhone passcode. The process involves gaining access to the var/KeyChains root directory and deleting the keychain that holds the passcode information.

To achieve this, you’ll need a method of gaining root access into your device, either via wireless SSH or a free program like iPhone Explorer (I personally favor this). Please note that this method will require your device to be already jailbroken and OpenSSH installed if you plan on using wireless SSH. This method may also fail if your device was jailbroken using limera1n and you haven’t reinstalled the afc2add service.

The following steps utilize iPhone Explorer (download here) to remove the passcode lock on your iPhone or iPod Touch without losing data, for both Windows and Mac.

  • Connect your powered-on device to the PC/Mac using USB cable.
  • Launch iPhone Explorer and select Root Directory from the left hand pane.
  • Navigate to var > Keychains

how to reset iphone password

  • Within Keychains, locate the one titled keychain-2.db. Right-click on it and Delete Selected.

iphone passcode forgot

  • Disconnect your iPhone from the computer, power it off and power back on. The passcode lock would be removed without affecting your personal data or settings.

Did this method work for you? Found the tip useful? What do you do when you forget your iPhone passcode? Let us know through your comments and spread the word.

About author
Aatif is a project manager by profession and a gadget-freak at heart. Being a techno-phile since high school, he developed a keep interest in mobile devices and settled with the iOS platform after experimenting through everything else. Being an avid internet user, Aatif likes to brag (tweet) about it through @aatoo
32 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. HI Thank you for your post. I changed my passcode, thought I was sure I knew my new passcode. When I went to enter it, it didn’t work and my phone has been locked and disabled for 2 weeks now. None of the passcodes I’ve tried have worked so I’ve been looking into numerous ways how I can get access back to my phone. Yours seems the most helpful and easiest for me to understand. I was able to take all the steps with no problem, however when my phone turns back on it still has the passcode enter. Yes, my phone is jailbroken but since I didn’t do it myself, I’m not sure how to find out if it was done using the limera1n . If so, how do I reinstall the afc2add service you mentioned?

  2. Thanks for the awesome tip, but i do have one problem. Once i delete the file keychain2-db, it automatically keeps a backup file for it. And i’ve tried tonnes of time on deleting it and restarting my iphone, but it just doesn’t seem to work, my passcode lock is still there. Help me?

  3. Hey Valerie,
    all you have to do is go to the iphonebrowser options ( in the edit tab) and turn on “no automatic backup”. you can either set it to do that for just that run, or every time you run the program. hope that helped

  4. Hey Jesse, thanks, but it didn’t work. i tried again, and again, but it just didn’t budge. i’m thinking of updating it to ios5,and then restoring it. will it remove all of my jaibroken apps?

  5. Well It Resolved My Issue…..
    I Didnt Forget My Passcode
    A Jailbreak Theme Made It Impossible
    To Type
    When I Chose ” aio by krs ” & Hit Respring
    The Keyboard Was tiny
    I mean You Needed Baby Fingers To Use It
    When You Hit “1″ 2,4,5 lit up also
    So I Tried The Software at first I Had the same issue as Valerie
    Then I Saw The Library Tab Went To The Themes Folder & Deleted The Bothersome Theme I Found Other Themes With The Same Lousy effect
    But This Worked Like A Charm It Also allowed Me To Regain Precious Drive Space SIX STARS I Love It

  6. I noticed some people are having the problem where the keychain reappears, so heres my fix, remove the key chain then remove //private/var/keybags/systembag.kb **WARNING** this will break your iphone putting it into restore mode but all you have to do is re-jailbreak your phone i use redsn0w and did’nt have a problem peace out

  7. Thanks alot h0re … i deleted my systembag and now that i try to rejailbreak i get “no successful frimware download after 60000 ms ! giving up” ….
    I got iphone 4 5.0.1 jailbreak w redsnow 0.9.10b5c

    And JESSE , i dont see the automatic backup thingie in edit…

  8. thnx bro …. worked awesome :)

  9. Thanks a ton!! I had issue of password forgot and undergone the similar problem of Valerie. But **h0re** suggestion worked like charm. Thank You!!! by end of the day, going to bed happily after a days of struggle.

  10. I figured this would be a nice change vs using a custom Ramdisk, but as I suspected it didn’t work (iPhone 3GS 5.1.1). Maybe something changed in the latest build of Redsn0w but after deleting the systembag.kb file and running the jailbreak it just goes back into restore mode. Recovery Fix failed to resolve that issue. If I find a successful solution I’ll be sure to post it up on my blog. Cheers!

    • Hi,
      did you find any solution to 3GS with 5.1.1?

  11. why cant i delete the keychain thinggggg

  12. I cannot even go to iExplorer. what can i do? Please!

  13. Im having the problem like valerie can someone pls help.

  14. i deleted the file and rebooted and the file return

    • Deleted and the file still there .. after restart … stil need a passcode @@

  15. When i right click… it is not 2 options i has more than 2 options and none of it is delete selected . So how things going if it’s continue like that ?

  16. i installed everything, went to keychain and wouldnt delete, i paid to have my iphone 3g jailbroken so i dont know whether its the limera1n thingi, what can i do, i need to get into my iphone !

  17. I did everything. It seems somehow can’t be delete when I click delete options.

  18. Thanks soo much!! “h0re”

    I had iPhone 4 CDMA iOS 6 with Jailbreak.
    I just deleted 3 files using iTools software for windows.
    /var/keybags/systembag.kb
    /var/keychains/keychain-2.db
    /var/mobile/Library/Preferences/com.apple.springboard.plist

    then put on DFU mode and re-Jailbreak and then boot tathered.

    IT works AWESOME!!!
    all credits to: h0re !

  19. i have an iphone 3g and wanted to know if there is a reason why my phone isn’t recognized by iphone explorer while on the lockscreen?

  20. is it normal for the kechain to take long when deleting becuz mine has been trying to delete the thingy for about 5 minutes by now please help me

  21. hello again please do not mind my last comment but i seem to have a bigger problem.. i permanently deleted the keychain but when i restarted it again, my iphone 4 was still disabled.. please tell me what to do

  22. also when i redid the process the keychain was there agian….i dont get it! maybe its becuz it was still disabled for 20 minutes but im not sure..please help me

  23. Hello! I actually have the same problem as Valerie and I tried the suggestion of Jesse but the only buttons in my menu is file register help…….. But help me I have important files in my iphone which is jailbroken….. thank you in advance!!!

  24. Hello!

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  27. Usually I don’t learn post on blogs, but I wish to say that this write-up very compelled me to try and do so! Your writing style has been surprised me. Thanks, quite nice article.

  28. Hello!

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  30. Hello!

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