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How to Unlock an iPhone Without the Passcode

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You might need to reset your iPhone’s factory settings if you forget your passcode. You would lose all your data including phone numbers, photos and saved passwords. This is how to unlock your iPhone if you forget your passcode.

What do you need?

  • A desktop computer or laptop computer (Mac OS, Windows or Linux).
  • Lightning cable. It is recommended to use a lightning cable that was made for iPhones.

Once you’ve backed up your data, determine which iPhone model you have. Follow the steps below to restore it.

How to unlock your iPhone

  1. Open iTunes on your computer. Before you do this, ensure that your iPhone isn’t connected to the computer.

    Download iTunes from Apple to install iTunes on your computer. Open the program once it is installed.
  2. Connect the cable to your computer but not to your iPhone. The cable’s end should be near your iPhone. It will be necessary to plug it into your iPhone within a matter of seconds.
  3. Start Recovery Mode on your iPhone. You can do this in a variety of ways depending on the iPhone you have.
    • For unlocking a newer iPhone, such as the iPhone X or later and the iPhone 8/ iPhone 8 Plus, hold down the power and one of the volume buttons.
    • If you have an iPhone 7 Plus or iPhone 7 Plus, hold down the Power button and “Volume Down” buttons simultaneously.
    • If your iPhone 6 is equipped with the Home and Power buttons, press and hold both of them simultaneously.
  4. Press the buttons on your iPhone to activate the power off slider.
  5. Hold down the volume down, power, or home buttons until the recovery mode screen displays. The screen looks similar to a lightning cable and has a plus sign beside the iTunes logo. You will also see text at the top of your screen that says support.apple.com/iphone/restore.
  6. Click on Restore to open the pop-up window. Click OK if you get another pop-up message saying “Couldn’t connect to the device”.
  7. Click Restore & Update if you receive another pop-up message. Select Next to download any updates.
    Please note that this download can take up to 15 minutes depending on the speed of your internet connection. Your device might exit Recovery mode if the download takes more than 15 minutes. Wait for the download to complete, then go back to Recovery mode.
  8. Wait for the restore process to complete. This is because your laptop or computer is extracting files from software. It is very important that the computer is not left alone. You will see the following message appear on your computer screen:

    Your iPhone has been reset to factory settings and is now ready for use. Your iPhone must remain connected. After it restarts .”, it will be displayed in the iTunes window. Click OK or wait for it to disappear, and your iPhone will start booting up.
  9. Start setting up your device. Once everything is set up, you can use your device again and create a new passcode.

Notice: You must remember the passcode you have set up when you create a new one. Otherwise, you will need to repeat all of the above.

You can restore your user settings and data if you have a backup copy (in iTunes or iCloud). This link will show you how to recover your iPhone backup.

You can also unlock an iPhone with apps. This route is not recommended. You could end up with a damaged iPhone even if the app was downloaded from the App Store.

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