After 4 months of seeding developer betas, Apple finally released iOS 5 to the masses last week. The update introduced over 200 new features, including several that closely mirrored jailbreak utilities.

But instead of being discouraged by Apple’s efforts, the jailbreak community has stepped up its game. Not only are there several iOS 5-compatible packages available, but a jailbreak for the software has been around since day one…

The state of the iOS 5 jailbreak can be quite confusing for some folks, so we decided to clear things up.

Can iOS 5 be Jailbroken?

Yes and no. Yes for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod touch, and original iPad owners. No for iPhone 4S and iPad 2 owners. The latter two devices have A5 processors and other components that keep them from participating in the exploits.

There is no word on when A5 devices will be jailbreakable. But the other devices, as long as they support iOS 5, can be jailbroken using either Sn0wBreeze or the Dev Team’s popular RedSn0w utility.

Keep in mind that the iOS 5 jailbreak is still a tethered exploit, so users must connect their device to a computer after every restart to maintain the jailbreak.

How Do You Jailbreak iOS 5?

There are a couple of ways to go about jailbreaking your device on iOS 5. The only pre-requisites are that you have a compatible device (meaning it is capable of running iOS 5, and it’s not the iPad 2 or the iPhone 4S) and a computer. You’ll need a computer for two reasons: 1) because jailbreaking iOS 5 requires it, 2) because it’s a tethered exploit, meaning you’ll need a computer after every device restart.

There are two tools you can use to jailbreak iOS 5, Sn0wbreeze and RedSnow. Need help jailbreaking? We have full step-by-step tutorials for both tools. Click here for Sn0wbreeze and here for RedSn0w.

Is it Worth it to Jailbreak iOS 5?

The current jailbreak, as aforementioned, is a tethered one. You basically have to re-jailbreak your device after every restart (how often do you restart your device, though?). It’s also worth noting that some folks have found the iOS 5 jailbreak to be a bit buggy.

So, if you depend on your device running smoothly, you may want to think twice about it. The good news about the iOS 5 jailbreak is that several of your favorite jailbreak apps and utilities have been updated to support the new software.

iOS 5’s new features, like the Notification Center, also make jailbreaking worth it. Developers have designed dozens of widgets to take advantage of the open space in its drop down menu.

When Can We Expect an Untether?

Interestingly enough, the iOS 5 jailbreak is untethered for folks with an iPhone 3GS on an older bootrom. But for everyone else, we have no idea when an untethered jailbreak will be released. We do know, however, that it is being worked on.

Members of the Chronic Dev team told folks at JailbreakCon last month that they had multiple exploits for iOS. In addition, i0n1c (responsible for the iOS 4.3.1 untether) told the Twitter nation a few weeks ago that the iOS 5 untether was “covered,” suggesting that he knew of people working on it. In addition to the iOS 5 untether, we have no idea when an iPhone 4S jailbreak will be available. But as soon as we hear about either we’ll let you know.

The bottom line is that the iOS 5 jailbreak is leaving the early beta stages and is coming full circle. Expect even more utilities updated with iOS 5 compatibility.

Any questions?

  • anthony

    So on ios 5 jailbreak you can respring and be ok? you just cant reboot. Is that correct?

    • Pl0xs

      Yes. With a tethered jailbreak you can respring, get in/out of safe mode and restart your springboard and it’ll be ok.

  • tamim

    i don’t know if i am doing well or not i try to jailbreak the iPhone 4 unfortunately when i Finnish the jailbreak after installing instal us the phone freezes would you mind if tell how to fix this?

  • Jeremy

    Greetings. So, I’m not sure if I have this right. I have an iPhone 4, iOS 4.3.0, bb 4.10.01, SHSHs saved: only 4.3.5. I need to preserve the possibility of a Gevey Ultra unlock. I’m interested in an untethered jailbreak for iOS 5. Can I use PwnageTool to custom cook a ISPW iOS 5.0? I also understand that the new RedSn0w for mac allows custom cooking IPSWs while preserving base bands, but I’m scared, as the DevTeam blog doesn’t spell it all out.

    Can I use PwnageTool to custom-cook IPSW iOS 5.0? And if so, would this be tethered or untethered, since I’m starting with 4.3.0? I don’t understand if the tethered issue is only for those starting at iOS 5 or anyone trying to get to iOS 5.

    Gevey Ultra supposedly works on iOS 5.0 with my baseband, so they say (though it’s not published on their site), so I’m thinking this is the only option (because Gevey Ultra does not work on 4.3.5). I’ve tried to run iFaith to retrieve my current iOS 4.3.0 blobs, but it hasn’t worked with my device. Thoughts?

    Thanks! ~Jeremy

  • Alex groat

    When does it come out because I recently had a 3.1.3 jail broken iPod but it kept on stuffing up therefore I updated to 5.0. I lost most of my apps and I am not happy. Please leave answer below

  • Mark

    Hello Everyone,

    I am new to this Jailbreaking Thing. I am intereseted in jailbreaking my Iphone 4 running IOS 5; however, i was wondering what happens after my phone restart and I don’t have any available PC near me. Would i still be able to use my phone when it starts? or Would i really need to have a PC to boot the Phone. This is so confusing for me. 🙂

    Thanks for all the help

  • IpodBoy

    hello ive jailbroken my ipod touch 4g running ios 5 and it started fine but now if i install a jailbeak app it goes into a safe mode loop, i can get it out of safe mode but i have to uninstall the app and fix it with terminal. can anybody help me stop it going into safe mode?

  • Matthew

    What is this older boot rom version on 3GS you refer to in your article. I am using a 3GS purchased almost 2 years ago. I believe I am running boot rom 05.16.05

  • AppleBlowz

    Wow.. I mean Apple is a bigger tyrant than Microsoft has ever been…

  • Ok. @jeremy, there is no current untethered jailbreak for ios5 so pwnagetool doesnt support it.
    @mark, the device is useless until you can boot with a computer. it will be stuck on the apple logo forever if you dont.

    • Jeremy

      Thanks, Charles, much appreciated.

  • Ipoduser

    hi.ive jailbreaked my ios 5 with the tethered one. the problem was when i played with cydia’s iTweaks that need the system to reboot. n of course, with the unstable tethered version, my ipod 4g went into the safe mode. ive tried so many times to restart with ibooty, but my device keep on running in the safe mode. is there any solution to that?

    • easty

      it may run into the safe mode, if u instaled winterboard without fix it, if so, then get winterboard fix tool in cydia and then should be ok

  • Joe Govreau

    How do you untether jailbreak iPhone 3gs like you said you could do in the article due to the older boot rom