Apple iOS 4.3.1 Fixes Graphics Glitches, Mobile Connections

Apple fixed graphics and mobile-connection bugs in the latest iOS 4.3.1 update, but it's not yet clear whether the iPad 2 jailbreak or the Pwn2Own exploits have been closed.

Apple released a minor security and maintenance update for its iOS devices a few days earlier than expected to fix mobile connections, graphics and Apple TV bugs.

Apple's iOS 4.3.1 update, issued March 25, included a handful of security and maintenance fixes for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. The update comes as Apple prepares to roll out the iPad 2 to 25 additional countries.

Within hours, a jailbreak was available, according to Ultras Now, a jailbreak site.

The latest update covers the iPhone 4, third and fourth-generation iPod Touch, iPhone 3GS, iPad 2 and the regular iPad, according to Apple. The update is available for AT&T's GSM-based iPhone, but not for Verizon's CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) phones.

Verizon customers are still on iOS 4.2.6, which was released in January.

Apple has resolved bugs related to activating and connecting to some cellular networks and addressed authentication issues with some enterprise Web services, according to its release notes. The maintenance release fixes image flicker that may be present when using the Apple Digital AV Adapter with some TVs. The update also fixes various occasional graphics glitches on the fourth-generation iPod Touch.

In the release notes, there is no mention of battery issues that some iOS 4.3 users complained about, nor does it mention whether the security hole Charlie Miller exploited to win the recent Pwn2Own hacking contest at CanSecWest has been closed. The issues may still be open or may be covered under "general bug fixes."

Miller reported on Twitter that the Mac OS X vulnerability he found for Pwn2Own was fixed in the 10.6.7 update. With iOS 4.3.1, he has yet to comment on whether his bug has been fixed.

The jailbreak is a "tethered jailbreak" and is available currently for the iPad and iPhone 4. Other versions are expected soon. The user will have to use PwnageTool 4.2, Universal Ramdisk Fixer and tethered boot utility to build a custom firmware image and then restart the phone in "DFU" to run the boot utility before using iTunes to install the jailbreak, according to detailed instructions available online.

DFU, or Device Firmware Upgrade, mode is a state into which you can put your iOS device that allows a jailbroken device to interface with iTunes, but does not load the iPhone operating system. A tethered jailbreak means the device has to be loaded into DFU mode every time it reboots.

Users with jailbroken devices should not download the official 4.3.1 download, as it will make them lose the jailbreak, according to a Twitter post by an iPhone hacker who writes for the Dev-Team blog. He also said iPad 2 jailbreakers should wait, but he didn't think Apple had fixed the iPad 2 jailbreak, either.

The iOS 4.3.1 release was expected within two weeks, Boy Genius Report, a site that focuses on communications and consumer electronics, said March 21. Based on that rumor, this release landed a little sooner than expected.

Apple also released a minor update for Xcode, with version 4.0.1. The latest code fixes bugs that prevented indexing of some projects, related to nil settings in the Core Data model editor, prevented automatic download of iOS documentations, and made the "Install" to hang at 99 percent complete. There were additional bug fixes to the compiler for iOS projects and stability improvements made.