How to Fix iTunes Error 4014/4013 and Upgrade Your iPhone Successfully

How to Fix iTunes Error 4014/4013 and Upgrade Your iPhone Successfully

iPhone users occasionally run into a strange error – the 4014 / 4013 – that prevents you from upgrading to latest iOS version via iTunes. Barring OTA updates, any update that is done through iTunes runs the risk of several errors and one of them, the 4013/4014, is our concern here.

Put simply, the error is hardware related but like all things digital, you don’t really get to fix this one without your share of head-banging. There are a variety of solutions that worked for various people. What we try here is to make sure you don’t go about trying them randomly but in an ordered way. That makes it easier to fix.

How to Fix iTunes Error 4014 and 4013

Before You Start

As always:

  • Use the latest version of iTunes
  • Make sure iPhone has enough space to bring in a new update. A gig or more is recommended.
  • Also make sure the iPhone is not low on battery.

The Real Problem

Error 4014 (or 4013) is usually associated with a hardware problem – a faulty cable, a faulty port etc. On the surface, your iPhone connects to the computer, iTunes recognizes the device but somewhere down the line, iTunes thinks that the cable is not really that good. Or may be the port isn’t.

The first thing you try should be change the USB port to which you connect the iPhone. Next up, change the cable that you use. Arguably, this has worked not for everyone but for a few people.

As an extreme measure, you can also try updating from some other computer which has the latest iTunes installed.

Backing Up and Going Into Recovery Mode

If you are trying to update the firmware without doing a clean restore but running into this error (even after changing the cables), it’s time to cut the chase. This method is usually recommended as the last-thing-to-try but I think it’s easier to get this done with right away.

  • Connect your iPhone to the computer. Fire up iTunes.
  • Backup your iPhone.
  • Now disconnect the iPhone, quit iTunes.
  • Put the iPhone in recovery mode. The short version goes like this: press and hold power and home buttons till the screen goes blank.
  • Open iTunes on PC.
  • Connect the iPhone. iTunes should indicate (through a dialog box) that an iPhone is detected in recovery mode.
  • Now go ahead and restore the device as new. This will erase everything but you will have the backup to restore from.

Some Notes

  • Occasionally, the error seems to vanish when people update to the last iOS 6.x version and then update to iOS 7. (This applies when you are on iOS 6.0, 6.1).
  • Clear out apps and app memory to free up space on your iPhone. Although this sounds very unrelated to this error, it has helped.

  • Jullian Pablo

    Didn’t solve anything to me. I’ve tried all iMac usb ports and switched the cable but it stil get’s me the same error. If i’m running TinyUmbrella it gives me 4014; if i’m not, 3194.

    • http://www.igeeksblog.com/ iGeeksBlog

      Can you confirm these things?

      1. Latest version of iTunes (11.1.1)
      2. Restoring as new iPhone?
      3. Try a different PC/Mac with latest iTunes running on it?

      • Jullian Pablo

        Yep. Tried in Win7 and OS X 10.8.5. I’ve got all kinds of errors.. gor 11, 4014, 3191, 1600 and probably a few others that i can’t remember. I got stucked in apple logo loop after installing a Winterboard theme and now it won’t boot (even if i try safe mode) and apparently won’t restore either. I’ve tried restoring it to 6.1.3, 6.0, 6.0.1 and 5.1.1 .. no luck.

        • http://www.igeeksblog.com/ iGeeksBlog

          If you’re okay with data loss (or if you’ve got a backup already), you could try a recovery mode restore. And I think you’re running into errors because you’re trying to restore to a custom IPSW file.

          A recovery mode full restore might work? Hold down power and home till the screen goes blank. Then, connect the iPhone to iTunes. Don’t do a custom restore. Just let iTunes restore completely to the latest iOS version. At least, you get your iPhone back into working shape again. Really hope this solution works for you.

          • Jullian Pablo

            I don’t really care about data loss.. i have it all backed up in my external hdd or in cloud services, but… Unfortunately, if i do that i’ll lose my unlock that has been hold by my baseband in the past two years. And i can’t even get it factory unlocked (imei) due to the fact that the online services that provide such service, can’t unlock the factory carrier of my iphone (TMN) and the company won’t do it either.

          • http://www.igeeksblog.com/ iGeeksBlog

            Uh oh. Looks like you’re in a serious fix here. I’m afraid that the error throws up because in the latest iTunes version, Apple seems to block custom IPSW restores. And TinyUmbrella is not a way out. We’ll look for solutions in the meanwhile.. Sorry we couldn’t be of any more help here but we’re trying … hope we find something soon and let you know :)

          • Jullian Pablo

            Don’t worry. ;) Also, I just managed to do a restore to 5.1.1 using redsn0w.. is far from what i wanted but a least it’s working for now. And as soon as apple released iOS 7 and the new iTunes i knew that i’d be screwed if i needed to do a restore or something like that..

          • Himansh Pahwa

            You had your SHSH blob file?
            When I tried to restore from redsnow it is asking for the lob file which i dont have.
            I am facing exactly same problem as you faced.

          • http://www.igeeksblog.com/ iGeeksBlog

            Blobs are required to go back to older versions.

  • David

    Need help stuck on restore mode , i dont care if anything delets i tried everything jailbreaking it wouldnt even work. im goo with phones so i’ll understand please help

  • . AKINWALE™

    Hello there,Please i am having a similar problem,First off i’m not very good with technical stuff.My friend helped me jailbreak my iPhone 4s last year,I was going to update to the new iOS 7 when my phone suddenly displayed the connect too iTunes screen,Ive been stuck here for weeks and I’ve got all my contacts on this phone.I’ve tried restoring with my mac but when it’s done downloading,it gives an error message ‘device not eligible for update’..Im using the latest iTunes but i’m not sure about my cord though,Got couple of cuts here and there,But charges the phone fine.Please note that i can’t do anything and i’m stuck on the connect to iTunes screen.

    • saqlain

      did you solve this problem

  • Kwesi

    I followed all the instructions above and nothing seems to work no matter how many times i’ve tried

    • http://www.igeeksblog.com/ iGeeksBlog

      If recovery mode doesn’t work, try DFU. Very little chances of that succeeding but give it a try if you havent.

  • Danae Leslie

    Have tried almost everything – downloaded new version of itunes (twice), restarted computer, used two different cables (not sure if either of them are the original one…), used different ports and about to try another computer in the hope that error 4013 will disappear. I have tried custom 7.0.2 updating but even just the normal restore (at this stage i don’t give a flip about data, i’ve been 28 hours without a working phone) gives error 4013 every single time…obviously i’m updating from the expired beta…

    • http://www.igeeksblog.com/ iGeeksBlog

      I think you should try changing the cable first. If you get the ‘ineligible for upgrade’ error, you’ll need to edit the hosts file (/private/etc/hosts) and remove/comment out the line that has gs.apple.com in it. (Backup the file for safety).

    • http://www.igeeksblog.com/ iGeeksBlog

      Did you try the DFU mode?

  • vijay kumar singh

    in any way trying all those suggested things still I am facing problem. only mistake I did, I tried to update the latest IO7 update. my phone is iPhone 4S and again and again I am getting error 4013 or 4005. I think this problem is created by APPLE. can you help me. with the same computer, itune and cable iPhone 5 is not facing any problem only iPhone 4S is suffering. I find so many people is facing same problem, that can be seen on internet

  • Terry Pterodactyl

    after almost completing a restore I was given an error 37 message, then my phone went into DFU mode. Now when I restore I get 4014 and I cant get out of DFU, Before this happened I was getting error 20, I managed to restore the phone after changing the battery. However after a blackout the computer turned off and the iphone with it, causing it to go back into recovery mode. any idea? id feel a bit easier if I could at least get it out of DFU.

    • Brian

      did you ever get out of dfu mode i got same problem

  • Hila Mashraki

    Hi guys! I resolved the problem.
    I work at repair service for smartphone…. we had that problem with iPhone 5 same error 4013.
    we tried original cable, several computer… everything!
    But then I decided to replace the charging connector flex cable (I thought maybe the connection problem can come from there too-and it did!!) and that help!
    So if you tried everything and it didn’t help – try this.
    send it to repair service and ask them to do that!
    I must say I only tried it once so I can’t guarantee anything.
    Please please I would be happy to hear from you guys if you tried it, work or didn’t.
    just let me know and everybody else..

    • jonathan

      change the flex connector and nothing stays the same fault and with all the computer cable follows the same crap

  • disqus_g4PeGjfhHg

    I had the same problem: error 4013 on iPhone 4s. I had a second iPhone 4s in the house and the update went perfect, all the way with the same cables. After that, I’ve exchanged the motherboards in the iPhone’s and the error went to the other phone. So… In mine case is the cables inside the iPhone. (charging dock, power mutton, antenna and lcd/digitizzer) dont know exactly but I have a guess is the charging dock and flex cable. I’ll let you know after more trials.

    • disqus_g4PeGjfhHg

      ops…. it wasn’t the flex charging cable, nor the lcd/digitizzer . The problem that it was giving me error 4013 was the (Proximity Light Sensor Flex Cable Power Button for iPhone 4s).
      is the shortest flex cable on the top of the iphone after you open it. just turn off the iphone and lift the 3 flex cables from under the rear camera and reconnect them with the exception of the shortest one.
      start the iphone and the power button wont work anymore but the error should be gone. Hope it helps.

  • Ahmed Master

    Hi guys I am a cellphone technician at a shop. I had this same issue with a customers Iphone 5. The solution I found was that you have to change the proximity/front camera flex. Once I did that I restored it through iTunes and everything worked perfectly.

    • LordOfThePhones

      Thank you very much. This idea helped me. To test, just remove the front camera flex camera and do a restore. The restore should go smoothly. After that, reinsert the flex cable and do a power cycle. If the phone boots up normally, then good. If not, power off and change out the flex cable.

  • Alaa Kachouh

    Try this —–>

    For those who suffer from this nasty problem (error 4014), just put your device in DFU mode, then remove and reinstall the driver by going to Device manager–>Universal Serial Bus–>Apple Mobile Device USB Driver. After that try again the restore process, it should work, at least it did for me ;)