People have been jailbreaking iOS devices for as long as Apple has been releasing them. But up until today there’s been no way to jailbreak the iPad 2. Now there is. Just point your iPad browser to the JailbreakMe web site and click install and in a few seconds the Cydia store will be installed on your tablet. If you’re using an iPad 2 you’ll need to be running iOS 4.3.3.
JailbreakMe also supports:
- iPad 1 running iOS 4.3 through 4.3.3
- iPhone 3GS running iOS 4.3 through 4.3.3
- iPhone 4 running iOS 4.3 through 4.3.3
- Verizon/CDMA iPhone 4 running iOS 4.2.6 through 4.2.8
- iPod touch 3rd generation running iOS 4.3, 4.3.2 or 4.3.3
- iPod touch 4th generation running iOS 4.3 through 4.3.3
If your device isn’t on that list, it won’t work — although the same security hole is present in iOS 5.0 beta. And if you think you might need to restore your device, make sure to check out the information on the iPhone Dev Team blog before getting started.
Jailbreaking allows you to install software that’s not available in the official App Store — including tools that change how your device looks and works at a system level. For instance you can replace the app launcher, notification system, or even the logo that displays on the screen when you boot your device.
JailbreakMe comes from iOS hacker Comex and it’s taken a couple of months to put together. In a nutshell, he found an security flaw in iOS 4.3 which allows you to download a PDF file containing code that cracks open the operating system a little bit.
Theoretically that security hole could lead others to develop malicious software that could could be used to attack your device — so once you’ve jailbroken you might want to download an app called PDF Patcher 2 from the Cydia store to prevent any other software from using the exploit. Unfortunately there’s no way to install the patch unless you jailbreak your device, although it’s likely that Apple will release a software update soon that will fix the flaw and render the latest version of JailbreakMe useless.
Most Jailbreaking tools require you to connect your device to a computer with a USB cable and run software from your desktop. But JailbreakMe works over the internet. Comex released the first JailbreakMe tool last summer, but Apple quickly sealed the security hole that allowed it to work.
It’s also an untethered jailbreak, which means that you won’t lose the ability to install and run jailbreak-only apps if you reboot your device.
Normally this would be the point where I give step-by-step directions. But honestly, all you have to do is visit JailbreakMe.com, click the “free button,” then the “install” button and then follow any prompts on your device and a few seconds later you’re done. You can check out the video below to see how easy it is.