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Does DFU Mode Delete Everything? Get The Facts Right

iPhone DFU mode, also known as Device Firmware Update, often helps solve many iOS software issues, especially when other solutions fail to work. Besides fixing a lot of iOS issues, you can use it to jailbreak, reverse jailbreak, or update from beta.

It basically puts the iOS device into a state that it can interface with iTunes on Mac or Windows without loading the iOS. This way, you can restore the device (no matter the state or form that it is in) and also take additional steps to alter/repair it.

But, does DFU mode delete everything? Well, this is the biggest worry of many iPhone users out there and it’s definitely something you should be aware of.

In this article, we will talk about all this in great detail and also show you how you can put your device into DFU mode and how to restore it without deleting everything. So, let’s jump in.

Does DFU Mode Delete Everything?

The moment your iPhone enters DFU mode, no data on it gets erased. However, when exiting the DFU mode, you have to restore the device which results in deleting all your data. In other words, entering DFU mode doesn’t really erase anything, but it’s the DFU restore that actually deletes everything.

So, if you use the DFU restore, then it will get rid of all your personal data including videos, photos, music, messages, and app,s as well as any previously configured settings. It does this in order to restore your device to its original/factory state. You can then use the mode to change the iOS version of your device, even though all your personal data and changes will be erased.

Now if you’ve been asking yourself, does DFU mode delete everything iPhone, then the answer is absolute no. But, if you wonder, does restoring from DFU mode delete everything, then it’s a big yes!

How to Put Your iPhone into DFU Mode

You need to take some precautionary steps before you put your device into DFU mode. These steps include:

  • Ensure you’ve backed up your iPhone since DFU restore will clear out all your device data.
  • Ensure your iPhone remains connected throughout when iTunes or Finder is still reinstalling the firmware and system software.
  • Get the latest iTunes or macOS version and install it on your Windows or Mac computer.
  • If the device is water damaged, don’t try to restore it using DFU mode as it won’t work.

Note that if you use DFU mode to jailbreak your device or downgrade its iOS system, you may run the risk of damaging the device and voiding its warranty.

That said, you’ll need an original Apple USB cable for you to connect your device to your Windows or Mac PC that runs the latest iTunes or macOS version. The process of entering DFU mode itself involves several key/button combinations and actions that vary depending on your iPhone model. Below are specific steps to put your device into DFU mode based on its model.

If you have an iPhone 8 or a newer model, follow these steps to put it into DFU mode:

  • First, you need to connect your iPhone 8 to your PC using an original Apple USB cable.
  • Once your phone is connected, open the Finder or iTunes program.
  • Now take your phone and quickly press the Volume up button and then release it.
  • Press the Volume Down button, then quickly release it.
  • Next, press the Power button but keep holding it. The screen should turn black after around 10 seconds.
  • While still holding the Power button, press the Volume Down button and hold on to it.
  • After 5 seconds, let go of the Power button but still hold the Volume Down button.
  • iTunes/Finder will then detect that your device is in recovery mode, so once it does so, let go of the Volume Down button.
  • Now, click Restore iPhone on the iTunes app so that a new iOS version can be installed.

iphone 8

In case there’s a message on your iPhone screen that prompts you to connect your device to iTunes, then start the steps above again. Nothing should appear on the screen (should be a black screen) when the iPhone has entered DFU mode.

If you have an iPhone 7, follow these steps to put it into DFU mode:

  • Once you connect your iPhone 7 to your PC, launch the Finder or iTunes program.
  • Press the Power/Side and Volume Down buttons concurrently and keep holding them.
  • After about 10 seconds, let go of the Power button but still hold the Volume Down button.
  • As soon as iTunes/Finder detects that your iPhone is in recovery mode, let go of the Volume Down button.
  • Now click Restore iPhone on the iTunes app to install the new iOS version.

iphone 7

Again, the phone screen has to be blank/black, otherwise, you need to repeat the process.

If you have an iPhone 6S or an earlier model, follow these steps to put it into DFU mode:

  • Launch the Finder or iTunes program after connecting your iPhone to your PC.
  • Press the Power and Home buttons concurrently, and keep holding them.
  • After around 10 seconds, let go of the Power button but still hold the Home button.
  • Once iTunes/Finder detects that your iPhone is in Recovery mode, let go of the Home button.
  • Finally, click Restore iPhone on iTunes to change the iOS version.

iphone se

Your device screen should be entirely blank if you followed the steps correctly. But, should the Apple logo show up or a message informing you to connect your iPhone to iTunes, then repeat the steps again.

How to Restore iPhone without Erasing Everything?

Well, we’ve established above that the DFU restore indeed erases all data on iPhone. So, are there ways you can restore an iPhone without deleting everything? Yes, there’s a way. The best method is using a professional iOS system restore tool such as the FoneGeek iOS System Recovery. With this tool, you can restore your Apple device in either Recovery or DFU mode without deleting any of your personal data. Moreover, the software is 100% secure, plus it won’t interfere with your privacy.

Main Features of FoneGeek iOS System Recovery:

  • Restore iPhone or iPad in Recovery/DFU mode without data loss.
  • Doesn’t need iTunes, hence there are no errors.
  • Fix almost all iOS/iPadOS system issues with a 100% success rate.
  • Entering/exiting the recovery mode for free with one click.
  • Works with every iOS/iPadOS version, even the latest iOS 16.

   

Steps to restore iPhone using FoneGeek iOS System Recovery

  • After downloading and installing the FoneGeek iOS System Recovery on your computer, launch it and then get your device connected to the PC using a USB cable.
  • Click the Standard Mode option from the home page to restore your iPhone without losing any data.

choose repair mode

  • After your iPhone is detected by the program, click Next. If it’s not recognized, follow the displayed instructions to put it into DFU/Recovery mode.
  • From the page showing your device model and its matching firmware packages, select and download the firmware version you prefer. Click the Download option to confirm the firmware download.

download firmware package

  • Once the firmware is completely downloaded, click Start. Give the program a few minutes to finish the process. When it’s done, your iPhone should now be restored and your personal data should also still be intact.

fix now

Conclusion

As you’ve just learned, the answer to “does DFU mode delete everything” is a big no. Entering DFU mode doesn’t erase anything. On the other hand, though, it’s evident that DFU restore does indeed erase everything on iPhones or other iDevices. When you exit DFU mode after performing restoration, nearly all of your personal data and previous settings will get deleted.

Luckily, it’s possible to restore your iPhone without erasing everything and you can easily do this using the FoneGeek iOS System Recovery. This professional tool will certainly help restore your iPhone with a 100% success rate and no personal data or previous settings will get deleted in the process.

Joan J. Mims

Joan J. Mims is interested in researching all tips about iPhone, iPad and Android. He loves to share useful ideas with all users.

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