Users who love to jailbreak their iDevices now await iOS 5.1.2 for the battle to begin again, as Apple will likely shut down the platform vulnerability that allows this jailbreak to work. [Note: We still find it difficult to write "new iPad" rather than "iPad 3," but at least "new iPad" is shorter than "third-generation iPad."]
Jailbreaking, for those unaware, allows an end user to get past the restrictions that Apple places on its iDevices, preventing them from running any software that is not available in its curated App Store. Examples of useful features that can be enable by jailbreaking include a useful lock screen. For example, using certain apps in the Cydia App Store for jailbroken devices, an end user can see appointments and a list of emails on their lock screen, and even answer SMS messages without unlocking the device.
Apple has long said that such jailbreaking voids the warranty on any iDevices. However, there are other third-parties who will warranty your device if you sign up, naturally for an extra fee. It's also possible to carefully wipe the traces of jailbreaking from your device before you take it in for warranty repair.
Absinthe 2.0, or really Absinthe 2.0.1 since the so-called Jailbreak Dream Team (the Chronic Dev Team and the iPhone Dev Team) released a quick bug fix jailbreak to fix a hanging issue, offers an untethered jailbreak for all but one device that supports iOS 5.1.1. The exception is the revised iPad 2 that Apple continues to sell alongside the "new iPad." However, the team says a fix for that is forthcoming.
A tethered jailbreak means that every time the device boots, it has to be tethered, that is to say, cabled to a computer and jailbroken again. Obviously, this is a hindrancer, and an untethered jailbreak is preferred, although those desperate for jailbroken behavior will sometimes put up with tethering.
To be clear, Absinthe 2.0 works only on iOS 5.1.1. Those using iPhones can rest assured that the Absinthe 2.0 jailbreak works on all iPhones that support iOS 5.1.1, meaning the iPhone 3GS and later. The iPod touch third- and fourth-generation models are also supported.
Users who have already jailbroken devices running iOS 5.1.1 using a tethered jailbreak can remove the tethering requirement by using the Rocky Racoon 5.1.1 Untether package available through Cydia (just search for it).
Meanwhile, those with still un-jailbroken iPads, iPod touches, and iPhones, who have been clamoring for an untethered jailbreak can download from below; as noted it's actually 2.0.1 as the team released a fix for an issue with hanging:
Note: it's been reported that Absinthe 2.0 will not work if you updated to 5.1.1 over-the-air (OTA); you must restore to 5.1.1 via iTunes first.
Image Source: Wikimedia Commons