|Developer(s)||iPhone Dev Team|
|Preview release||0.9.15b3 (Windows, Mac) / 1 November 2012|
|Operating system||Windows, Mac OS X|
redsn0w is a free iOS jailbreaking tool developed by the iPhone Dev Team, capable of executing jailbreaks on many iOS devices by using low-level boot ROM exploits and additional exploits. It is a desktop application that enables users to jailbreak an iOS device (connected to the desktop computer with a standard USB charging cable) by clicking a series of buttons.
Like other jailbreaking tools, using redsn0w to jailbreak a device enables the user to have root access on their device and removes Apple's restrictions on installing software outside the App Store. Jailbreaking with redsn0w includes an option (enabled by default) to install Cydia, the popular third-party software installer.
redsn0w supports many iOS devices; it is updated when the Dev Team develops new exploits and features. Depending on the device and the iOS version, redsn0w provides either a tethered or untethered jailbreak (or no jailbreak); "tethered" means that if the device reboots, the user must plug the device into a computer and use redsn0w to boot the device.
To execute a jailbreak on a device, redsn0w reads a copy of the stock firmware file from Apple and then runs the exploit payload directly on the device in the form of a RAM drive. redsn0w uses many exploits including limera1n, 24kpwn, Pwnage, and Pwnage 2.0.
Boot ROM exploits such as limera1n mean that supported devices are permanently able to be jailbroken tethered (including iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod touch 3rd and 4th generation, and iPad 1st generation), since iOS updates from Apple cannot update the devices at the boot ROM level, although redsn0w usually needs to have minor updates to explicitly support each new firmware version. redsn0w uses additional exploits (specific to each firmware) to produce untethered jailbreaks on those devices (and also on other devices that do not have boot ROM exploits available).
redsn0w also includes extra features that allow a user to enable multitasking, wallpaper, and other features on certain iOS devices that do not officially support those features.
In early versions of redsn0w (prior to 0.9.9b1), the user selects the appropriate iOS IPSW (firmware file) for the connected device and firmware — which can be downloaded from iTunes or from various locations on the internet, since iTunes deletes old firmware files.
A command line version of the same tool, called cinject, is also available.
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