"Software update failed. An error occurred downloading iOS 9" - weird message after clicking 'Download and install'. Restarting devices didn't help. What's the problem?

  • 2
    Most likely it's just the Software Update servers being busy, try again a bit later. You are not alone: 9to5mac.com/2015/09/16/ios-9-update-issues I already updated my iPhone and currently downloading the iPad update, but I'm using iTunes. Sep 16, 2015 at 17:44
  • @IlariScheinin Wow, I was in the middle of writing my answer, citing the same 9to5Mac article, while you posted your comment. Pretty funny. Sep 16, 2015 at 17:47

3 Answers 3


iOS 9 just came out and since many are trying to update to it, it seems like a server overload on Apple's part, this article from 9to5Mac also confirms this. Unfortunately, all you can do is be patient. I still only see the iOS 8.4.1 update available on my iPhone 5S.

  • Update today's morning, is was the first time issue on my side.
    – k1r8r0wn
    Sep 17, 2015 at 6:57

Golden Rule - don't do the Download & Install at the same time.

Hit "Download only" when iTunes asks you. Saves a lot of heartache in the long run.

It ought to go without saying that you should both sync & backup to iTunes before doing any upgrade.

One very smart thing to do before trying to long-haul any large file is to reboot all your network hardware; modem, router, puter etc.
I got my update first try, but I couldn't for the life of me persuade it to login to iCloud. Power-cycling my WiFi [which had been running for months since its last cycle] simply 'fixed it'.

As with anything so vague as 'switch it off then on again' - YMMV.


Another easy fix is to insure there is enough memory remaining. I had to delete or transfer a lot of photos, videos, music, etc. to get back enough space to download the new iOS.

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