back to article Apple's iOS updates brick iPads

Apple's latest iOS 9.3.2 update appears to be bricking iPads. Reports of borked iPads emerged on Twitter thanks reportedly to a hardware issue requiring users to possibly restore their devices or contact support. And people have. Users have Tweeted to Apple Support (@AppleSupport) with complaints their iPads cannot be …

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  1. Hud Dunlap
    Unhappy

    Other weirdness in the upgrade

    When I try to upgrade my 5s it tells me it needs 700MB free in order to upgrade and that I need to adjust my music settings. I have 4.1 GB free so I don't see the problem. I think I will wait a couple of days before I try again.

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: Other weirdness in the upgrade

      My 5S is refusing to update GarageBand (1.1GB) because of lack of free space, but it did this iOS update (88.1MB) no problem.

      When I heard it was bricking iPads, I immediately ran the iOS update on my iPad2 hoping I would have an excuse to replace it. Unfortunately the update worked.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Other weirdness in the upgrade

      I think Apple wants you to adjust your music settings to switch on Apple Music and subscribe to it.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's not a bug, it's a feature designed to allow people to have an excuse for their partners as to why they need a new shiny.

    It's not bricked its just in "Upgrade Cycle Management Mode" and all data is saved to iCloud ready for your new shiny.

    I thought everyone knew this?

  3. Tessier-Ashpool
    Coffee/keyboard

    The Register has sought comment from Apple

    That made me giggle.

  4. VinceH Silver badge
    Trollface

    "The patches (HT206568) also address a low-risk vulnerability that allowed attackers to bypass lock screens"

    The update is working, then. The lock screen can't be bypassed if the device is bricked*.

    * Trollnote: I'm conveniently ignoring that according to the article the vulnerability is on iPhone 6 devices, but it's iPads that are being bricked.)

  5. Duffaboy
    Coat

    Why be so keen to update

    Time and time again we see that the customer is the Beta tester for O/S updates, I sit back and hang fire till I feel the need to do so.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Could it be that the angle used between the device and the phalanges could be misaligned causing it not to work and a realignment could indeed fix the problem?

  7. Xamol

    If it were Microsoft

    There's some reasonable criticism of Apple for releasing a patch that bricks some of it's devices but I can't help thinking that if it had been an MS patch bricking a Surface, the reaction here would be orders of magnitude more outraged.

    This isn't the first time Apple patches have caused this kind of problem. Surely there's only so long that users good will towards them can insulate them from the kind of backlash that MS would be receiving...

    1. Youngdog

      @ Xamol Re: If it were Microsoft

      There's also some unreasonable criticism up there as well - and if MS did brick a similar number of devices the vitriol would be fully justified as it would hit a far higher proportion of users given there are about 10 times as many ipads out there.

      1. Xamol

        Re: @ Xamol If it were Microsoft

        @Youngdog - There's the built in goodwill coming out.

        I never said anything about numbers of bricked devices and your construction of an inequitable comparison in favour of Apple just proves my point. Why do you create a scenario where MS bricks a higher percentage of devices?

        I would expect the level of vitriol levelled at MS to be higher even if MS bricked a smaller percentage of of devices than Apple. That's just my opinion, others will make up their own minds.

        If Apple keeps on behaving as they are, surely they can't expect the good will to last forever. Bricked devices is just one example... Can you imagine if MS came out and simply stated that their devices are only expected to have a life of 3-4 years? There was almost no reaction when Apple did just that.

    2. Duffaboy
      Trollface

      Re: If it were Microsoft

      The reason for the lack of backlash is that these boards are full of Fanbois

  8. Chris Jasper

    Great..........

    ............since I work for a place that exhorts its Apple user base to update their devices the second an update comes out without any testing whatsoever then expects us in IT to fix it.

    I'm going home............

  9. RFC822

    It's a lie

    The story must be a lie, because everybody knows that Apple products just work...

  10. BurnT'offering

    Updated

    Works fine.

    Anecdotal evidence aside, doesn't every update of every OS these days brick at least a few devices? An opportunity for recycling a pre-written story template with blank spaces for device and OS names, and version number. Not that El Reg would sink so low, of course

    1. TVU Silver badge

      Re: Updated

      "Anecdotal evidence aside, doesn't every update of every OS these days brick at least a few devices?"

      Erm, no and we should never routinely expect any update from any OS provider to brick a device. In my case, I use Linux Mint and it just keeps on getting more refined and better and better. You are welcome to join us.

      1. BurnT'offering

        Re: Updated

        I'm not saying that Linux is any more or less brick-prone, but to imply that never happens with Linux ...

        https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu-cdimage/+bug/1040557

        And, good luck installing Mint on an iPad.

        1. TVU Silver badge

          Re: Updated

          Bugs should be expected in any operating system, including Linux and BSD OSes, but bricking ought only to be expected in operating systems that are at the alpha stage of development and certainly not from a supposedly mature and very widely used operating system.

    2. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Updated

      Anecdotal evidence aside, doesn't every update of every OS these days brick at least a few devices?

      Err no! But that is probably what the marketing exec's at Apple, Microsoft etc. would want us to believe. And from your comment, it would seem they have been successful in resetting your expectations...

  11. Eclectic Man

    To be fair ...

    ... it can be difficult to fix one bug without introducing 'minor' issues like making a device totally unusable.

    At a customer site once, I discovered that saving a Word file that contained a DOS command* as ASCII text, with a '.BAT' extension meant the OS treated the file as an executable and did just that. Access to DOS commands was forbidden to normal users. The supplier's 'solution' was simple - stop the users saving files.

    It did sort of work, but the users, and the customer did not fully appreciate the Dilbertesque elegance of the solution.

    (* If you don't know what a DOS command is, you haven't lived. OK seriously, create a Word file with jus the single line of text

    dir | files.txt

    Save it as text file but with a file extension of .bat

    Double click on the '.bat' file and then open the file named "files.txt".

    Now, try it again with the line

    command.com

    But ++only++ if you have permission.)

  12. Marc 25

    The more things change, the more they stay the same

    After 25 years in this business some things in life appear certain....Death, Taxes and bugs in software.

    I would say cut Apple some slack...but hey this is The Register and vultures clearly hold grudges...even after 15+ years!

  13. DerekCurrie Bronze badge
    Go

    Apple's General Response Document...

    Get help with iOS update and restore errors

    Learn how to solve specific iOS update and restore errors.

    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204770

    "If you see one of the errors below, you might have a hardware issue:

    ...56...

    Here's what to check:

    1. Make sure that you have the latest version of iTunes.

    2. Check for issues with third-party security software.

    3. Make sure that your USB cable, computer, and network are reliable. Then try twice more to restore your iPhone, iPad, or iPod.

    4. If you still see the error message, you can check for outdated or modified software or contact Apple support.

  14. pete_witty

    i have an old ipad 2 which i havent updated in years and it still works

  15. Tim036

    I voted on this buy moving from ios 7 to Android

    For me it was international symbols which meant nothing to me ....

    If you accidentally swipe from the bottom up a screen comes up with a load of comprehensible ikons. I had accidentally touched the 'do not disturb ikon

    That caused all incoming calls to go to voicemail.. After several weeks I lost patience with it and put my sim card in a phone that would ring when someone phoned me !

    So if you have a iphone 4 do not upgrade the ios to 7 ! IMHO unless you value the hugely improved compass ! *LOL*

  16. Tim036

    I voted on this buy moving from ios 7 to Android

    For me it was international symbols which meant nothing to me ....

    If you accidentally swipe from the bottom up a screen comes up with a load of comprehensible ikons. I had accidentally touched the 'do not disturb ikon

    That caused all incoming calls to go to voicemail.. After several weeks I lost patience with it and put my sim card in a phone that would ring when someone phoned me !

    On trying to restore a previous backup using iTunes the updated latest version of Itunes no long recognised I'd just plugged by phone into the computer. that followed upgrading my ios to 7 which blew my contact list away...

    So if you have a iphone 4 do not upgrade the ios to 7 ! IMHO unless you value the hugely improved compass ! *LOL*

  17. Nameless Faceless Computer User

    ...discontinues all updates until the word "update" and "brick" does not appear in the same sentence.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Once an Apple believer, now I wish someone would throw a computer at them.

    Updated an Ipod to 9.3,2, wasted 2hrs trying to figure out how to play my long list of podcasts before determining it was just unable to handle all the podcasts I subscribed to, even though it did fine before the update. Then it took more than 4hrs to wipe it and prepare it so I could get rid of it.

    The delay was caused by the OS turning on Location software, adding a password (no I didn't forget it and even if I did I have an algorithm to recover), regularly locking up, backing up and then not letting me delete the back up I didn't want and they still have, and the fact that I don't have that many free hours I want to spent on fighting with software. If I did have that much time I would rather use it to learn new software that I like and does what I want, like the PLC program I was taken away from to fight with Apple.

    And to think I thought they were the company to fight big brother, now I wonder why I ever thought that, oh well that was a long time ago, in a land that no longer exists.

  19. This post has been deleted by its author

  20. tempemeaty
    FAIL

    "It just works"...

    ...is just dead.

    Even OSX El Capitan is a train wreck. I wish I never installed that steaming pile of...

    I honestly think Apple can't do software anymore.

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