My younger brother, while playing with my iPad, switched on the restriction passcode for in-app purchase and when asking him he had forgotten the password. I asked some of my friends, they told me that there is no other way than restore. Upon hearing them I was really sad to know that I have to lose all my work.

I will be pleased if anyone could tell me some other way get the passcode than to restoring it. If any thing can be done after jail breaking it, it will not be a problem for me, I'll do it.

If restoring is only the method please tell me about restoring it and what I will lose after restoring my iPad as I do not have any backup.

  • DO you mean the in app purchase - or the passcode to lock - if the firmer go into iTunes store on a computer as follow the instructions for lost password – user151019 Jul 5 '12 at 12:23

The restrictions password can be reset by adding a PIN to the Springboard preferences file in iOS 6. Easier said than done!

The instructions below worked for my iPad - and no jailbreak required.

They are, with a few minor changes, from Apple Support Community starting from about the 8th page:

  1. Download iBackupBot

  2. Connect iPhone/iPod/iPad via USB

  3. Backup device to iTunes

  4. Close iTunes (leave your device plugged in to your computer)

  5. Open iBackupBot - this will open all device backups that it can find

  6. Select your backup from the left column

  7. Sort right hand pane by Path and locate "Library/Preferences/com.apple.springboard.plist" (there may be two files named this; try them both) and double-click to open

  8. Extracted it (and only it) to the desktop. Do this by Checkmark the file, then select the Extract Icon (or File - Export menu), then select the checkbox that says only that file and the other checkbox that says something about Info about the file. Two files will appear on your desktop - one ending in plist and the other ending in .info.

  9. Edit com.apple.springboard.plist with you favourite plist editor (e.g. Xcode)

  10. Look for and change the string for "SBParentalControlsFailedAttempts" to 0

  11. Add in



  12. Save your changes, and return to iBackupBot

  13. Import the modified plist. It is now in the backup!

  14. Exit iBackupBot

  15. Open iTunes and use Restore Backup to your device

  16. After restore is done and phone restarts the password should be 1234.

Amazing! But use at your own risk.

And, just to repeat, I got all this from an Apple Support Community discussion. Nothing is original.

  • I want to say this works!. I just did it on my Ipad3. In fact they have updated Ibackupbot to make it even easier than the above directions. You no longer need Xcode and you can restore the springboard.plist right to your Ipad. After selecting your backup, search for springboard, then edit that file with Ibackupbot's editor and restore that selected file. Works like a charm! – user54301 Aug 1 '13 at 1:42
  • And how can we do it for Linux distributions as far as IbackupBot is only for Windows and Mac? – IggyPass Jul 6 '16 at 0:45

There's a tool that can recover the restrictions passcode from an unencrypted backup, called pinfinder. Download the tool at the pinfinder github page, make an unencrypted backup and follow the instructions.


It is possible, I have done it before on my sister's iPad, the passcode is stored in a plist file in the iPad backup. I will return when I find what the plist file is called.

Also note that synchronising with a computer will create a backup on your computer.

So I have looked it up, this appears to only work in iOS 4. I see a possible way around it in iOS 5 but I have not tested this new method.

  1. Find your backup folder. Windows: %AppData%\Roaming\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup\ and Mac: <your home folder>/Library/Appli­­cation Support/MobileSync/Backup/

  2. Open your iPad's backup - this involves a little guesswork (if you sync more than one device). However, you can check the date of the backup in itunes preferences, then find the backup in the folder with the same date.

  3. If you are using iOS 5 here - see if you have an iOS 4 backup with the passcode. If you have an iOS 5 backup only backup your backup. I have not tested the following method.

  4. Locate the file 662bc19b13aecef58a7e855d0316e4cf61e2642b (no extension). Open with a Property-List (plist) editor - link from Youtube. (Mac comes with a built-in one).

  5. Look for the key SBParentalControlsPIN. Underneath is the 4 digits of the Restrictions Passcode. If you have an iOS 5 backup, you won't find the key and you need to do step 6 instead.

  6. WARNING! THIS MIGHT BREAK THE BACKUP, BACKUP YOUR BACKUP FIRST. I HAVE NOT TRIED THIS, I CANNOT VOUCH FOR IT WORKING: - Locate the key called SBParentalControlsEnabled. Uncheck the box, or change from true to false, or similar. Restore your iPad from this backup. IF IT FAILS, REPLACE THE MODIFIED BACKUP WITH THE ORIGINAL COPY THAT YOU MADE, THIS WILL GET YOUR STUFF BACK.

Hope this helps, and sorry if it doesn't.

Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZaXtrSHfWi8


This works definitely, either by installing the SSH client as in the original message or by connecting with terminal from iMac (at least it worked with my iPad 2 with iOS 6.1.2 that was jailbroken with evasi0n 1.05 and then installed OpenSSH on iPad).

To Manually Reset the Passcode:

  1. Install any desktop software for browsing the iPhone filesystem (iPhoneBrowser/iFunBox/SSH/DiskAid trial version).

  2. Navigate to /var/mobile/Library/Preferences/ and delete com.apple.springboard.plist

  3. Navigate to the directory /var/Keychains/ and delete "keychain-2.db"

  4. Reboot the iPhone.

To give you an idea on how this worked, the com.apple.springboard.plist file contains the setting of your passcode turned-on. Deleting this resets the toggles back to default (after the final reboot) and takes care of that part of the problem. But since a passcode was already defined, the "keychain-2.db"


I don't know for sure if there is any way for jailbroken devices to bypass this.

If you have a backup, you can restore to it. The only things you will lose are any changes you have made since your last backup. However, you will still be able to retrieve any songs and apps downloaded via iCloud.

If you do not have a backup, you will have to start from scratch. Backing up the device after the password was changed will store the password in the backup, so there is no other option.

  • 1
    Aren't you required to enter the restrictions password before wiping/restoring the device? – bassplayer7 Jul 5 '12 at 2:29
  • 1
    Oh, right. But wouldn't putting the device in DFU not require the restrictions passcode? – Tanner Jul 5 '12 at 16:21

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