How To Update to iOS 4.3 From iTunes/Manually

Apple released the iOS 4.3 update for the , and earlier today and it includes a lot of new and exciting features (Read: What’s new in iOS 4.3). Upgrading to iOS 4.3 is a easy task and you just need to connect your device to the PC and check for updates.

iOS 4.3

If you are unsure on how to update your device to iOS 4.3 here are the simple steps to update to the latest OS from Apple.

How To Update to iOS 4.3 Through iTunes

Step 1: Connect your device to iTunes using the USB cable.

Step 2: Once iTunes has detected your device, click on the device name in the left hand menu and click on the “Check for Update” in the device description box.


Step 3: Apple will show you a popup message as seen above if an update for your device is available. Click on the “Download and Update” button.

Step 4: Apple will download the iOS 4.3 update and install it on your device. It is important that you DO NOT disconnect the device from the computer during the process. It is also recommended to keep your computer plugged in to the power outlet during the process.

That’s it. The process might take around 10-30 minutes depending on how long it takes to download the update to your computer and install it. Once iOS 4.3 is installed, iTunes will sync your device and you can use it again.

How To Update to iOS 4.3 Manually

In some cases, the iTunes update process might not work for you for several reasons. In those cases, you can also update your device to iOS 4.3 manually. Here are the steps to manually update your device to iOS 4.3.

Step 1: Download the iOS 4.3 IPSW file for your device using the iOS 4.3 IPSW direct download links.

Step 2: Connect your device to the computer using the USB cable and wait for iTunes to detect it.

Step 3: Once your device has been detected – follow the steps given below for different OS.

  • For Windows – Hold the Shift key and then click on the “Check for Update/Update” button.
  • For Mac OS X – Hold the Option key and then click on the “Check for Update/Update” button.

Step 4: In the next dialog browse to the file that you downloaded from Step 1 and select the IPSW file.

Step 5: iTunes will now use the IPSW file and update your device to iOS 4.3. The process should take around 10-20 minutes.

That’s it. Your device will be updated to iOS 4.3 with ease. Please feel free to post your questions in the comments box below.

Published by

Keith Dsouza

I am the editor-in-chief and owner of Techie Buzz. I love coding and have contributed to several open source projects in the past. You can know more about me and my projects by visiting my Personal Website.I am also a social networking enthusiast and can be found active on twitter, you can follow Keith on twitter @keithdsouza. You can click on my name to visit my Google+ profile.

  • Daniel

    i have jailbroken my iphone 4 with ios 4.2.1. And now i want to update it to ios 4.3… can i just update manually through itunes? because i am scared of my phone being bricked…pls let me know how to update jailbroken 4.2.1 to 4.3 without losing any data like non-jailbroken iphone.. thx.

    • Jereme Claussen

      You must wait for a jailbreak for iOS 4.3 to arrive. If you attempt to update before a 4.3 jailbreak is on the market, your phone will no longer be jailbroken and any apps you installed through Cydia will be removed or rendered unusable.

  • Dan J

    I have a iphone 3gs. I did everything you said and got the error message “XXXX Iphone cannot be restored (or updated) because the firmware file is not compatible.” What does that mean?


    • anonymous

      i got that too, except mine is the third gen ipod. help!?

  • Srihari Murali

    Thanks man… the shift trick for manual update was really useful! way to go…!

  • Lindsay

    The IPSW file is big – do I need to go find it and delete it after completing the manual update?

    • @Lindsay – You can delete it after you have verified that it is working fine. However, it is always good to store a backup just in case something goes wrong.

  • Matt

    That is awesome. Thanks you. My 3Gs wasn’t recognizing the 4.3 OS but this worked perfectly.

  • samol

    how to unlock ios 4.3 without wifi

  • HHK

    This is not the jailbroken version right?Is it true copy of ios 4.3 from apple website?

    • @HHK – Yes this is a direct download from Apple’s website

  • chauvlog

    hi, i followed everything but i get an error when apple is verifying the ipsw file. error 3194 i think.

    i tried restore and update to 4.2.1 and 4.3.

    help please

  • Desiree

    I followed the directions but I still go an error message at the end. “Unknown error occurred (3194).”

    • Rae Kozloff

      I got the same error message when trying to restore. Itunes extracted the file, then when verifying with Apple, this error comes up.

    • sean

      im getting this error code also……“Unknown error occurred (3194).” – anyone know why??? or what to do???

  • Peter

    I have the correct downloaded file, but… on Windows 7 / iTunes, holding down the Shift key when clicking on Help / Check for Updates has no effect … always wants to download the file.

  • Joe

    I downloaded the file from the link, but it is a .zip file not IPSW. I’m using windows 7. Even extracetd all filed from the .zip and searched for a IPSW but found nothing. I tried changing the file extension to .IPSW but then iTunes said it was unsuported file (or something similar, I cant remember the exact warning). What am i doing wrong?

    • husainibaharin

      just rename the .zip file to .ipsw,, no need to extract

  • Alex

    Thanks, worked for me on my Snow Leopard MacBook. iTunes kept failing to download the file itself (would annoyingly download the whole thing, hit and error and then toss it).

    After 3 failed attempts I used wget to grab the file manually and it worked first time. Many thanks!

    • could you tell me how did you do that ? in wget usage instructions, they ask to find the url for the itune item first. However i dindnt know how to find that for an OS download ..

  • Ab Murz

    I had experienced so many 1604 and 1603 errors updating my 3rd gen ipod touch before…
    I’m a little scared about updating, but this method is a little newer for me…
    Any comments about sync errors?

  • Misael

    I have a question, I know that if I press shift+restore it will restore my ipod (and delete verything.) and update it. If I press update instead, will my stuff be deleted? I think I read somewhere that if I update it that way, it updates and once it’s finished, all my stuff will be there without having to re’sync all the data into my ipod. I have it jailbroken and ofcourse I think I’ll wait for the jailbreak to arrive, but I still want to know just to be sure.


    • @Misael – Both Update and Shift+Update delete all data and then restore it again. The only difference between the two is that Shift+Update allows you to choose a file.

      • He asked to difference between “shift+restore” and “shift+update”. Not between “update” and “shift+update”. Can you answer again to his questions? I want it too. Thank you.

  • s w

    It sounds all so simple but you don’t mention whether this will work if you don’t want to lose any apps or data. I have an iPad that has many more apps than are on my computer as a friend put them on it for me. I have done a device backup in iTunes and I was wondering if anyone has updated the ios which would lose all my apps, then done a restore from backup and successfully put them back? or is this impossible to update my ios without losing all my stuff?

    • Cody

      You will lose everything at the update but it will restore from the backup just the way you left it. Give the update time if you have a lot to sync back. What it does is it wipes, updates, and then re-syncs according to the backup you choose once the update is done.

    • anonamous

      If you have backed it up it shouldn’t delete your apps. But I have never restored it before but I assume that backing up means. hope this helps. XD

  • anonamous

    what is the option key? please tell me because other wise i can update thx. XD

  • Paige

    does this update delete everything you currently have on your ipod touch?

    • @Paige – iTunes will backup your data before updating the OS and then restore it to that version

  • kimmieg

    Does this link to update to 4.3 work with iPhone 4?

  • Sam

    I experience the update error after chose the IPSW file 4.3.3, it show “unsxpected error 3194 when update” in Chinese, can you help ? many thanks

  • Ling

    My iPhone is quite old (model: MA712LL), not 3G. Currently using IOS 3.1.3. When I sync my phone in iTune it didn’t pop up any IOS upgrade message to me, is my phone still allowed to upgrade to IOS4.0 above?

    • @Ling – Older models of iPhone are not supported by iOS4 and above so you might not see the iOS upgrade message

      • wildchild

        Keith,I have an ipod 4g running ios 4.2.1. I have the 4.3 ipsw file downloaded. I’ve followed the instructions accurately but I am getting an error
        with code 3194. The solution in apple support says, itunes should be updated to the latest build, which I did but even after that I am getting the same error 3194.

        Can you please help??

  • kevin

    it doesnt work for me. i have ipod touch 3rd gen.

  • B White

    When i check for my update on my iphone 4 (4.2.1) it says my phone is up to date? and when i do the direct download it says the file is not compatible? PLEASE HELP

    • @B White – Which device are you using currently? Older iPhone/iPod Touch devices are not compatible with iOS 4 and above.

      • Eric

        m gettin error 3194 wat m i 2 do

        • Karen

          I have been to multiple places to try to manually download, but all of the files I have found download as zip files. I saw someone say something above about “renaming” but how did you do that?

          • Karen

            OK, I can’t get this to work. I’m running ITunes 10.4 and have what was originally and IPod 3g but was updated to ios 4.2.1. Running windows 7 on my computer. tried renaming but didn’t work – now i am getting the message that it’s not compatible. Should I be downloading the file for the 3g or for the more recent version?

  • Richard

    I have try this way too, but also i get same error it said “Unknown error occurred (3194)”, what i should to do?

  • Dr FeeQ

    i tried updating my iphone 4 from 4.3 to 4.3.3, but it always stops at the verifying part and gives me error 3194. d same thing occurs when i try updating to 4.3.4 and 4.3.5 as well.haven;t jailbroken my phone, running itunes on win 7..i’ve even tried restoring to 4.2.1, 4.3, 4.3.1, changed 3 laptops, but the error message jz keeps coming up..plz help..

  • Abdullah Al Mamun

    I had tried to update manually my iPhone 3gs but the message is showing on the screen
    “The iPhone could not be updated  An unknown error occurred (3194)”