“Internal Error” or “Unknown Error” Occurred During iOS Install

Oct 12, 2011 - 22 Comments

Internal error during iOS update

While many users have reported trouble free updates to iOS, others are running into a variety of errors in the process. One of the more common is “Error 3200″ or “Error 3002″, the fix for that is fairly simple and we’ve already covered it but nonetheless the error has plagued enough users for it to become a trending topic on Twitter.

As the day has progressed though, more and more error messages are popping up, everything from “An internal error occurred” with no number, to “An unknown error occurred (3004)” or with a wide variety of other error codes, ranging from 1600 to 3200.

The fix for all of these errors? Patience. Just waiting it out and trying again later often resolves the problems, although that isn’t much comfort to anyone who is stuck somewhere in iOS update limbo.

Waiting works because Apple’s servers are absolutely swamped during the iOS IPSW download and update process, as millions and millions of users try to cram through and activate their hardware. The evidence of server failure comes by a newer error message that actually reports this:

“The iPhone (name) cannot be restored at this time because the iPhone software update server could not be contacted or is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.”

Server unavailable error during iOS 5 update

So just wait it out, things should sort themselves out soon enough. The other side to all of this, is that if you haven’t tried updating to iOS yet, you might want to just wait until tomorrow so you can avoid some of these headaches.

Update: Here’s another screenshot of one of these error messages, the same advice is just waiting it out.

“The iPad ‘Name’ could nto be restored. An unknown error occurred (####).”

Unknown error occurred during iOS 5 update

Good luck!

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPad, iPhone, Troubleshooting

22 Comments

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  1. Eric says:

    Please check /etc/hosts. If there is any apple host name in it. If there is, remove it and retry.

  2. Geren says:

    Mine was error -34. After four attempts, it finally took.

  3. Robin says:

    unfortunately I didn’t wait and I restored my phone and lost all of my apps, which pisses me off for the few I paid for.

    • beana813 says:

      if you go to your appstore and click on your “purchases” it will show you your purchases “not on this iphone”. you can download those and won’t have to pay anything, it just takes a bit to load them all back up. hope this helps!

  4. JBG says:

    Robin. You can redownload any apps you paid for. Just got to the purchased tab in the appstore and download them for free.

  5. Arnoldski says:

    A solutions can be to direct connect your iphone to your computer and not use a dock. It worked several times for me.

  6. clasqm says:

    Hey Apple, I took a day off work for this. Now will you switch on that fancy new data center?

  7. clasqm says:

    Struggled all morning, then I found the problem: If you did a direct download, don’t try to point iTunes the file in your Downloads folder. Instead, copy the file to the directory described here:

    http://iphoneza.co.za/forums/Thread-iTunes-Where-are-my-iPhone-iPod-Touch-firmware-files–400

    and in iTunes just click Update normally.

    Updating now …

    Thanks to my fellow appleheads at mybroadband.co.za

  8. Chip says:

    are you guys done hammering the servers yet? i’d like to update my devices this evening ;)

  9. arun says:

    hey mine is something diff:

    the error code is : “there was a problem downloading the software for your iphone. The network connection timed out”
    and then it says:
    make sure your network settings are correct and your connection is active, or try later!

  10. [...] week due to immense demand of Apple’s latest and greatest releases. The first was a series of “internal error” messages related to installing iOS 5, the most prominent being Error 3200 and [...]

  11. Alex says:

    Hey,
    I downloaded iTunes 10.5 and then tried to update iPhone 4 (gsm) to IOS 5.
    the update had failed for no clear reason and from that point on I’m trying to restore it.
    for the past 20 attempts (several on my laptop and the rest on a PC), I get the same error massage:
    “The iPhone “iPhone” could not be restored. An unknown error occurred (-1).”

    I have not jailbroken the iPhone, i only have dozen or so apps, synced it every other day.

    b.t.w
    i tried the DFU mode before connecting it to the pc.
    also, i tried downgrading back and restoring with the following ipsw packages: IOS 4.3.2, 4.3.4, 4.3.5 and 5.
    different error code appears with each ipsw.

    what shell I do now? plz help me.

  12. Hdxjshxbd says:

    Shut your computer down and do a hard reset to your phone. Wait a couple hours, and then try to restart your phone. It should comeup with the iOS new phone screen follow the instructions. You should come to a screen that says “Set up as new phone” “Restore from iCloud” “Restore from computer” something like that. Then plug your phone into the computer, and choose one of the options, and follow the rest of the instructions.

  13. Simon Van Leeuwen says:

    GRRRR…”The iPhone “iPhone” could not be restored, An unknown error occurred (14)”

    Any attempts to restore generate the above dialog box. Any ideas folks? TIA…

  14. hosnia says:

    an unknown error has occurred (-1) can anyone pls help ????????????????

  15. Ola says:

    i was trying to downgrade my iphone from 5.1 to 5.0.1 and with ifaith ipsw while it was loading the phone went of and came back on with a recovery screen and an unknown error occurred (14) on itunes and i tried restore will 5.1 back it not accecpting anything pls what can i do

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