5 Ways to Reset Disabled iPhone with or without iTunes

by Lorena Hill

Updated on 2024-02-27

5min read

Got the prompt “iPhone is disabled, connect to iTunes” on your iPhone screen after many wrong passcode attempts? This generally occurs when you forget the passcode unluckily. In such a case, you can try to connect the iPhone to iTunes for restoration so that you can unlock it. Sometimes, you may want an alternative way to reset the disabled iPhone because iTunes doesn’t work for you or simply need another solution. Next, we will tell you how to reset a disabled iPhone with or without iTunes. Ready to learn how this is done? Read on!

Part 1. Reasons Why iPhone is Disabled

As what above says, your iPhone is disabled for no reason other than wrong passcode attempts. When you enter the wrong screen passcode on your device at least 5 times, Apple automatically disables the system for some minutes, then gives you another chance to try again. Should you fail to provide the right passcode for the 10th time, then the iPhone becomes disabled forever with no option to retry your passcode again and shows you “iPhone is disabled, connect to iTunes”.

Part 2. How to Reset Disabled iPhone with iTunes

iTunes, suggested on the disabled phone screen,  is a useful tool to reset a disabled iPhone. You can reset a disabled iPhone in normal state or Recovery Mode and here is how to get it done.

Way 1. Reset Disabled iPhone via Synced iTunes

Firstly, we advise that you reset your disabled iPhone by connecting it to an iTunes app you’ve synced with in the past. The reason for this is that a disabled device can’t connect with any software without requesting permission.

You have to grant the software access to your iPhone before any operation/action can be performed on it. In this case, that’s not possible since the device in question is disabled. So if you have a computer with iTunes that you’ve synced with previously, then use the stepwise guide below to reset your disabled iPhone:

Step 1: Launch the iTunes app on your computer and connect the disabled iPhone to it via a USB cable. Head to the upper left-hand panel, and click on the Device icon.

choose disabled iPhone | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 2: Next, a flyout menu will come up. Select Summary from the list to proceed.

click Summary | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 3: Now, navigate to the right-hand panel and click on Restore iPhone.

click Restore iPhone | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 4: Hit Restore in the pop-out to confirm your operation. Once the restoration is completed, proceed to set up the device for usage.

confirm with Restore button | Reset Disabled iPhone

Way 2. Reset Disabled iPhone in Recovery Mode

In case you haven’t synced your iPhone with iTunes in the past, establishing a connection between your device and iTunes may be difficult. However, there’s a way forward and that’s via recovery mode. This solution is easy to apply but must be done with caution as any mistake can compromise your system.

Use the following stepwise guide to reset your disabled iPhone via recovery mode:

Step 1: Make sure the iTunes app you have on your Windows computer or Mac (strictly macOS Mojave or older versions). Launch the app, and proceed to enter recovery mode on your disabled iPhone.

Step 2: Here’s the guide to activate recovery mode for the different iPhone models:

iPhone 8/X and Newer Models

  1. Hold the Volume Up button down and release it.
  2. Proceed to perform a similar action on the Volume Down button.
  3. After that, hold the Side button down till you see the recovery mode screen.

iPhone 7/7 Plus

  • Holding down the Volume Down and Power buttons together at the same time till the recovery mode screen comes up.

iPhone 6 Series and Older Models

  1. Press the Home button + Power button together.
  2. Release both buttons when the recovery mode screen is displayed.
  3. out iPhone into Recovery Mode | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 3: Hold down the last key for the iPhone model you are using, then connect your device to the computer using the right USB cable.

Step 4: Without delay, iTunes will detect your iPhone in recovery mode, and then suggest you restore or update it. Click Restore and iTunes will return your device to factory mode in no time. Once that is completed, you can now set the iPhone up as new and use it without the disabled screen.

restore iPhone in Recovery Mode | Reset Disabled iPhone

Part 3. How to Reset Disabled iPhone without iTunes

For folks who have an issue connecting to iTunes, for example, iTunes can’t detect the disabled iPhone and you fail to put the disabled iPhone into Recovery Mode, here are 3 simple solutions you can use to reset your disabled iPhone without iTunes:

Method 1. Factory Reset Disabled iPhone without iTunes with Computer

A simple yet safe way to reset your disabled iPhone without iTunes on a computer system requires the installation of a professional iOS unlocker like Passixer. Passixer can factory reset the disabled or unavailable iPhone and then turn you back an accessible iPhone without passcode. It’s extremely helpful when you forget the screen passcode to your iPhone or your second-hand iPhone is locked with the previous owner’s password. This powerful tool applies to iPhone/iPad/iPod and supports iOS 17 or earlier.

Key Features

  1. Reset your disabled iPhone/iPad without iTunes and iCloud in 3 steps.  
  2. Remove Face ID, Touch ID, 4-digit/6-digit passcode on your iPhone/iPad.
  3. Recover or remove the Screen Time Passcode on your iOS device with minimal hassles.
  4. Remove MDM restrictions without credentials to get full control of your iOS device.

Steps to Reset Disabled iPhone without iTunes Using Passixer

Step 1: Run the Passixer software on your PC/Mac and click on Wipe Passcode.

click Wipe Passcode | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 2: Plug the disabled iPhone into your PC/Mac using the right USB cable.

Step 3: Should all go right, Passixer will detect the phone. Cross-check the info displayed about your iPhone and click Start if satisfied. Without further ado, the software will commence the firmware package download.

click Start to download firmware | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 4: Once done, you get a screen with an empty field where you enter 0000. After that, click on the white Unlock button and Passixer will reset your disabled device immediately.

confirm iPhone unlocking | Reset Disabled iPhone

Method 2. Factory Reset Disabled iPhone without iTunes and Computer

Don’t want to install a third-party tool or have a computer in your possession? Here are 2 other solutions you can try out to reset your disabled iPhone without iTunes on a mobile device:

Option 1. Through iCloud on Another Mobile Device

You must have activated the Find My iPhone and remember the Apple ID signed on the disabled iPhone for this way to work.

Simply apply the stepwise guide given down here to factory reset your disabled iPhone via iCloud:

Step 1: Visit iCloud.com on another mobile phone or tablet and click on the Sign In button at the bottom of your screen.

login iCloud | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 2: Type your Apple ID and the password in the fields provided and click the corresponding icon to log in.

enter iCloud account | Reset Disabled iPhone

Tips: In case you have 2FA enabled, you will receive a code on one of the devices connected to your Apple ID details. Copy and enter the code in the space shown to proceed.

Step 3: When your iCloud profile loads up, click on Find My.

select Find My in iCloud | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 4: On the left-hand side of the interface shown, select your disabled iPhone.

select disabled iPhone | Reset Disabled iPhone

Step 5: Next, click on Erase This Device and provide your Apple ID password once more for verification. After that, your iPhone will be erased immediately and you can now access your device without any security hindrance.

erase the disabled iPhone | Reset Disabled iPhone

Option 2. Use Find My App in Another iPhone/iPad 

If you have another iPhone or iPad, you can use the Find My app in it to reset your iPhone. Using Find My App to reset your iPhone is super easy but you need to fulfil some conditions for that to work. This condition is:

  1. Ensure you have Find My Phone enabled on the disabled iPhone.
  2. You have the Apple ID linked with the disabled iPhone.

Once you have the above set, apply the steps below to erase your disabled iPhone:

  1. Launch the Find My App on another iPhone/iPad.
  2. Sign in your Apple ID details and click on the Devices button located at the bottom of the screen.
  3. Choose your disabled iPhone to proceed.
  4. Next, select Erase This Device and your iPhone will be wiped in no time.

erase disabled iPhone in Find My | Reset Disabled iPhone


We’ve described the top ways to bypass your disabled iPhone screen without stress. However, mind you, Passixer offers the highest iPhone bypass success rate. So it’s our most preferred choice from the solutions provided to reset a disabled iPhone without iTunes.

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