Q: Where are the iOS updates downloaded to?

When updating your iOS device (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch) the updates are downloaded to your computer so that iTunes may update your device. The file location of these files are only important if you want to make a back up copy of the software or if you are trying to by pass a Error 3002 in iTunes.

Mac OS X

Select “Go to folder…” under the Go Menu in Finder enter one of the locations below.

~/Library/iTunes/iPhone Software Updates
~/Library/iTunes/iPad Software Updates
~/Library/iTunes/iPod Software Updates

Windows XP/Vista/7

Put one of the following addresses in the address location bar in a Windows Explorer window.

%appdata%\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPhone Software Updates\
%appdata%\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPad Software Updates\
%appdata%\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPod Software Updates\

Error 3002 in iTunes

If you are trying to update your iOS device on a day that Apple just release a new version of iOS or a new iPhone, you may not be able to validate your device with Apple due to the high traffic that is affecting Apple’s servers. In this event you may receive a Error 3002 when attempting to update to the newest version of iOS, to by pass this error download the official IPSW files for your device and place a copy into the corresponding file listed above. Then click the “Update” button on your iOS device in iTunes to start the update process.

e.g. If you have a iPhone 4S you would download and copy the IPSW file into the folder named “iPhone Software Updates.” Then click the “Update” button on your iOS device in iTunes to start the update process.

Notice: This has only been tested and works with the full IPSW Restore and not the new delta update releases.

Last Update: October 2011

Last updated on


  1. Where are the update files stored on the device once downloaded from the Internet, specific iOS7 or earlier versions. No matter what I do, can’t find it within the device. Argh.

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