Gadget How To: iPhone Tethering Without Jailbreaking

iphone-tethering

If you’re anything like me you’re not willing to Jailbreak your iPhone for the opportunity to tether the device to your computer for go any where Internet surfing.  Additionally, the folks at iPhone-Dev have yet to figure out how to Jailbreak the iPhone 3GS, although word on the street is that it’s coming any day now.

Well, fortunately there is a work around that requires no Jailbreaking or messy hacking to Tether it up.  Just follow the below instructions and you’ll be tethering with your iPhone 3GS or 3G running iPhone 3.0 software in no time flat.

  1. Point your iPhone’s browser to help.benm.at
  2. Scroll down to the blue button that says “Mobileconfigs’ and click it
  3. Next select your country
  4. Then choose your carrier
  5. You’ll then be prompted with a profile install which you should do
  6. Once that is complete click the iPhone’s Home button>Settings>General>Network>Internet Tethering>On
  7. Select USB or Bluetooth (I choose USB)
  8. Then plug your iPhone into your computer
  9. Those on Macs, your Network settings screen should automatically pop up under system preferences
  10. Select the iPhone (called Ethernet Adapter (en2) ) and the system will configure the DHCP info accordingly (this will probably happen after you click apply) and click Apply
  11. Surf the net!

Note, we still don’t know what kind of action AT&T will take against those who perform heavy Internet surfing on a tethered iPhone, or any tethered iPhone as it’s completely unsanctioned and may either break the contractual terms or cost you some serious dough.

Update: Many people seem to be having trouble getting this to work.  If you’d like some help please email info [at] www.gadgetreview.com.

Update 2: A German iPhone user on T-Mobile just wrote in and said this is what he/she had to do to get it working: “you have to install the mobile config, restart, delete the config, install the config, restart and then you can use it!”.  Interesting that you should have to install it twice, but who knows and if it works so be it!

Update 3: This hack no longer works if you’ve updated your iPhone’s OS in the last 6-8 months.

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Christen Costa

Grew up back East, got sick of the cold and headed West. Since I was small I have been pushing buttons - both electronic and human. With an insatiable need for tech I thought "why not start a blog focusing on technology, and use my dislikes and likes to post on gadgets."

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48 Comments

  1. it is not stopped it just that Apple changed some properties on the OS in 3.1 that disable the use of this hack in un-jailbroken iPhones. the only way around it for now is to jailbreak it, but in the site help.benm.at (where you download this) says that in this month he will put in the new mobilconfig for 3.1.2 for every iPhone. I recommend that you put help.benm.at in your home screen and check it every day.

  2. I’m using the original iPhone and downloaded it tried restarting my phone and what the person from Germany tried. I’m running 3.0 but the option to tether won’t even show up In my network settings. Anyone have any ideas?

  3. hi there i have a new iphone 3gs v3.1 i i want to tethering to xp window i try to install the mobilecofig but when i go to genral ,network, i do not see tethering on or off , can you please help me thanks

  4. I’d love to hear some feedback on whether anyone got busted by at&t….I’m considering switching my AT&T 5gig internet pkg to an iphone instead of my netbook, but want to be able to tether to netbook too…anyone else successful? Some crazy high bill or breech of contract cost is a worry to me!

  5. I cannot get windows network connections to see my iphone on my laptop. Ive plugged into2 diffetent desktops and got it to tether no problem. Any suggestions? My laptop is running windows xp home addition with svc pack3. ive tried re-booting, turning tethering off and on with no success. Any help that anyone can give is appreciated. im still running 3.0 on my iPhone mainly to keep the tethering.
    thanks!

  6. I had previously installed internet tethering and worked great, then I updated to 3.1 and went to tether last night, went to start tethering and the whole option under networks disappeared. Are there any fixes for this issue?

  7. I too recently upgraded to 3.1, and the tethering option is not showing up under the network options…. Anyone know what I’m doing wrong or if 3.1 found and stopped this loophole?

  8. I installed the profile with firmware 3.01, and tethering was flawless.

    Unfortunately, I “upgraded” to 3.01 today, and now the tethering no longer works.

    Do you have any advice?

    thanks,

  9. I have correctly installed the right profile for my iPhone. I live in the UK and am with O2 so used O2 Vertigo config. The iPhone seems to be working correctly and I have turned Internet tethering on. However, on my windows xp laptop when I plug my iPhone in all that comes up is about getting the photos from my iPhone. Nothing about using the Internet through it or it being an Ethernet device?!

    Any help would be gladly appreciated!

  10. OK, now that 3.01 is out, does anyone know if 3.01 disables this, requires a re-install, or what?

    Dylan, in Windows, after Step 8 in the instructions, go look at your networks under the control panel. You should see a new active network connection – on mine it says LAN2. If you disable your wireless network connection you should also see this active connection in the tray. It works without any further setup.

    1. I was wondering the same thing but haven’t had time to do the research on it. I know the next software update, the next big one that is, will disable the tethering. Hopefully they’ll launch something official at that point, though.

  11. Hi I can’t seem to get it working on windows xp. I don’t know where to find the connection/how to set it up.

  12. it works really – thanks so much!

    one question:
    if I’m a t-mobile user (germany), it is possible to make tethering also in UK or in other countries?

  13. For those of you having problems getting this to work on windows. You will need to disable all other networks for your iPhone network to be useable. Just have to click on any other connection you might be using and disable them.

  14. Logged off my PC and restarted, internet tethering started again. What is the best way to end the internet tehtering session: unplug iphone or PC, logoff of PC?

  15. Works great for me. Only problem that I have was trying to pair via bluetooth. PC ass for drivers for “peripheral devices”. A little help please.

  16. Mine isn’t working yet. Apple 3gs, install the profile, connect to XP Pro computer. Looks for an Apple Mobile Device Ethernet then comes back with a message “there was a problem installing this hardware Applie Mobile Device Ethernet. An error occurred during the installation of this device. Fatal Error during installation. Click finish to close the wizard.”

    Suggestions?

  17. This worked awsome. I am using windows xp and it recognized the settings once I plugged it in. The 3G is fast.

    1. Caleb,

      I tried to connect it to my Window XP, not luck. I checked all connection, it did not show up. Any advice?

  18. This rocks!! I tethered in less than 2 mins. Configured BlueTooth, and was up and running. Speed test on 3Gs Edge Network in San Francisco w/ OSX 10.5.7 was 1022 kbps down and 131 k up. Awesome!!
    Thank you thank you thank you.

    1. How did you set up the bluetooth? The USB works great for me, but I can’t seem to get the bluetooth set up correctly. Im running a black macbook pro and an iPhone 3Gs

  19. I’ve been using this for a week or so and it’s very nice — I love being able to jump online when I need to.

    I pay for 5GB data transfer per month on my iPhone, so if I don’t go over that AT&T shouldn’t have SQUAT to say about it. The bytes come into the iPhone the same way, don’t they? Just with tethering they don’t stop at the iPhone screen.

    If AT&T charges extra for tethering I’ll be pissed. It should be included in the data charge.

    Jay Jennings

  20. Thanks so much!

    This worked almost perfectly with my new 3Gs on AT&T and Win7 but steps 9 & 10 were confusing. The connection actually just shows up in the tray as an active LAN connection, and it isn’t obvious if your wireless connection is active at the same time. No setup was needed (although there may be a popup that asks what type of network it is – Public, etc.). At first I was looking for it in the wireless list – of course it’s not there. In the Network & Sharing Center it shows up as Local Area Network 2 under Active Networks.

  21. Iave am running this on a note book and do not have an option in my newtork connection to select the iPhone (called Ethernet) as its none existant.

    Please help.

    Adam

  22. the web page link you listed above does not seem to work for me. could you possible e-mail me link. i am most interested in teh teathering feature and like you dont want to jailbrea my phone just to teather. i am in the us and use ATT for service. any help is apreciated

    thanks

    1. I got that at first also but I went back and then into network again and it showed up. Works great with bluetooth and USB. BTW, I did this on my T-Mobile Germany phone.

  23. Hey, I tried this method but I don’t get an option to select Internet Tethering under the Network menu. Ideas?

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