I've got several iPads connected to Verizon mifi devices(MiFi460LE)

iOS has a "feature" that automatically downloads OS updates in the background without user input. (You still need to manually install the updates, but the downloads happen automatically).

The 6.1 update may break the functionality of some in-house applications, and I'd rather not hand users an iPad with a flashing self-destruct button that tells users to "download now!"

Is there a specific port that could be blocked to prevent iOS OTA software updates? If that's not sufficient, would blocking hosts from DNS or another way of preventing these downloads be feasible?

  • I read that signing out of iCloud will stop this from happening; I have not tested it myself though. – Tony Feb 5 '13 at 17:32

Without jailbreaking, or using an MDM (mobile device management) solution, you could just block the Apple site at your router. The site URL is appldnld.apple.com. All of Apple's IPSW files come from that location.

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  • I'm going to ask a new question asking for MDM solutions. – bmike Sep 18 '13 at 14:41

The latest update to the evasi0n jailbreak, evasi0n 1.2, allows you to disable OTA updates.

This is a fairly good tailored version of evasi0n considering the fact that it's the second update it received since it was released if you are hesitating about the down sides of jailbreaking on device performance.

Turning off iCloud might be a disadvantage. If you really want to disable OTA updates; I strongly suggest you to jailbreak.

Here is a tutorial for jailbreaking with evaisi0n.

P.S. If you will download evais0n, ONLY download it from evasi0n.com. Do NOT trust other sources.

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Apple's documentation says that the automatic downloads only happen when you are both:

  • Plugged in to power
  • Connected to Wi-Fi

It's not a long term strategy, but I have had people ensure they put their devices in Airplane mode before plugging in their devices to avoid a spike in downloads on release day for sites with fragile connections to the internet where we don't have more advanced options like blocking / throttling certain traffic as would be ideal for this situation.

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Just block the apple software sever...

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