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How to locate the serial number of a dead iOS device when all else fails.

In this guide I will tell you how to locate your Apple device serial number. Sometimes you have an Apple device that will not turn on because it's broke (DOH!). That same device might have a serial number on the back of it you can't read, and you have long since thrown away the packaging. So now how the heck are you going to find the serial number? The good news is, iTunes records all the serial numbers for your iOS devices. You just need to get creative!

Let's try the easy way first

Finding your serial number(s) via the iTunes help / about.

1) Open iTunes

2) Click on the help menu and then hold down the control key. Now click "About iTunes".

If successful it should show your device ID's. For me, it had, my iPod Nano and my iPad but It didn't have my iPod Touch, which is the one I was looking for. So I had to get a little more creative.

Next we will go hunting for the all great and powerful iPodDevices.xml

In Vista and Windows 7 this file is located in C:\USERS\(username)\AppData\Local\Apple Computer\iTunes

In XP it should be located in \Documents and Settings\<userName>\Local Settings\Application Data\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPodDevices.xml

18742211j.jpg

Open the XML file with word or wordpad and do a search for the word Serial number. With any luck you should find your serial number in this file. If you have more than 1 iOS device I would recommend trying the first method first, and then take a screenshot the number it screen gives you. Then compare them with the one in the file. That way you can easily tell which serial is the one you are missing.

Hope this helps someone with a dead iOS device, who is trying to locate their serial number before they call Apple support.

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Looks like room for someone to make a small application to find this and display it to a user ;)

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Looks like room for someone to make a small application to find this and display it to a user ;)

For the hell of it, I decided to give making it a shot, and I got a very basic one written, I left it open enough anyone could add to it. I've included the source (C#, .NET 4.0 Visual Studio 2010). If you don't have visual studio, just go to the /bin/debug/ folder for the .exe

Took about 20 minutes, Im sure others may approach it completely different, but basically everything is commented, and done as cleanly as I could in the time I did it.

iPodSerials.zip

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For the hell of it, I decided to give making it a shot, and I got a very basic one written, I left it open enough anyone could add to it. I've included the source (C#, .NET 4.0 Visual Studio 2010). If you don't have visual studio, just go to the /bin/debug/ folder for the .exe

Took about 20 minutes, Im sure others may approach it completely different, but basically everything is commented, and done as cleanly as I could in the time I did it.

Impressive! That little tool will be quite popular. Good job!

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Great Scott!

Impressive! That little tool will be quite popular. Good job!

lol thanks, if anyone has ideas, but not sure how to add them in the code, or doesn't have the tools, let me know and if I have time I can add them. There are a few spots for advancement, but like I don't know all the devices with the familyID's (I used my two ipods to get the Nano 2g, and Ipod Touch 4g) but those are all I have. So instead of saying IPod Touch 3g it would say Ipod Family ID: xxxxxx

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How to locate the serial number of a dead iOS device when all else fails.

In this guide I will tell you how to locate your Apple device serial number. Sometimes you have an Apple device that will not turn on because it's broke (DOH!). That same device might have a serial number on the back of it you can't read, and you have long since thrown away the packaging. So now how the heck are you going to find the serial number? The good news is, iTunes records all the serial numbers for your iOS devices. You just need to get creative!

Let's try the easy way first

Finding your serial number(s) via the iTunes help / about.

1) Open iTunes

2) Click on the help menu and then hold down the control key. Now click "About iTunes".

If successful it should show your device ID's. For me, it had, my iPod Nano and my iPad but It didn't have my iPod Touch, which is the one I was looking for. So I had to get a little more creative.

Next we will go hunting for the all great and powerful iPodDevices.xml

In Vista and Windows 7 this file is located in C:\USERS\(username)\AppData\Local\Apple Computer\iTunes

In XP it should be located in \Documents and Settings\<userName>\Local Settings\Application Data\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPodDevices.xml

18742211j.jpg

Open the XML file with word or wordpad and do a search for the word Serial number. With any luck you should find your serial number in this file. If you have more than 1 iOS device I would recommend trying the first method first, and then take a screenshot the number it screen gives you. Then compare them with the one in the file. That way you can easily tell which serial is the one you are missing.

Hope this helps someone with a dead iOS device, who is trying to locate their serial number before they call Apple support.

Nice tip, you kinda forgot to hide your username in the explorer pane....not sure why you'd want to hide it though, not like it's giving out any personal details :p

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Or.. you know.. look at the back of your iOS device... where the serial is located....

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Or.. you know.. look at the back of your iOS device... where the serial is located....

In this guide I will tell you how to locate your Apple device serial number. Sometimes you have an Apple device that will not turn on because it's broke (DOH!). That same device might have a serial number on the back of it you can't read, and you have long since thrown away the packaging. So now how the heck are you going to find the serial number? The good news is, iTunes records all the serial numbers for your iOS devices. You just need to get creative!

In my case the serial was so scratched up I couldn't read it.

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Just to note that for any cellular network capable iOS devices, the serial number and IMEI are located on the sim card tray.

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For the hell of it, I decided to give making it a shot, and I got a very basic one written, I left it open enough anyone could add to it. I've included the source (C#, .NET 4.0 Visual Studio 2010). If you don't have visual studio, just go to the /bin/debug/ folder for the .exe

Took about 20 minutes, Im sure others may approach it completely different, but basically everything is commented, and done as cleanly as I could in the time I did it.

Forgive me for asking but is there any reason why the software attempts a TCP connection on launch to 2.17.189.15?

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Forgive me for asking but is there any reason why the software attempts a TCP connection on launch to 2.17.189.15?

It doesn't.. the code is right there, feel free to look at it, you will see there is no network code at all.

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It doesn't.. the code is right there, feel free to look at it, you will see there is no network code at all.

Hmm today it tries to connect to a different IP but in the same range :s

ipodserials1.jpg

I unplugged my ethernet lead and with no connection the app throws up a hissy fit and crashes

ipodserials2.jpg

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Hmm today it tries to connect to a different IP but in the same range :s

I unplugged my ethernet lead and with no connection the app throws up a hissy fit and crashes

Not sure what to tell you, the code is right there for you to see, there is nothing hiding. You sure something hasn't attached itself?

Quick google search shows:

IP Address 2.22.77.15

Area Code

Country Code UK

IDD Code 44

Country Name uk.png United Kingdom

Time Zone +00:00

Region England

ISP Akamai Technologies

City London

Domain AKAMAI.COM

Connection Type DSL

Coordinates globe-small.png 51?30'1"N -0?7'34"W

Weather Station Code UKXX0085

Postal Code

Weather Station Name London

as I live in Canada, I'd have no use for anything in the UK, the only thing I could think of is that it might have something to do with the parsing of the XML but I dunno, you sure that's not your IP?

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may I ask why anyone would even need it?If its dead whats the point

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Not sure what to tell you, the code is right there for you to see, there is nothing hiding. You sure something hasn't attached itself?

Quick google search shows:

IP Address 2.22.77.15

Area Code

Country Code UK

IDD Code 44

Country Name uk.png United Kingdom

Time Zone +00:00

Region England

ISP Akamai Technologies

City London

Domain AKAMAI.COM

Connection Type DSL

Coordinates globe-small.png 51?30'1"N -0?7'34"W

Weather Station Code UKXX0085

Postal Code

Weather Station Name London

as I live in Canada, I'd have no use for anything in the UK, the only thing I could think of is that it might have something to do with the parsing of the XML but I dunno, you sure that's not your IP?

Nope that's definitely not my IP. I am not implying there is any rogue code but I'm just a little curious why it needs internet access. Can you try disabling your network connection and fire it up to see if it opens ok for you?

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I'm not at home right now, you could always download reflector, open up the program with that and look for something that seems to be outgoing?

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In my case the serial was so scratched up I couldn't read it.

FYI if you type *#06# into the keypad on mostly every smartphone it brings up the IMEI. Of course that's assuming you can get access to the keypad.

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could also just look on the back of the device (as nominak said )

*Edit - nvm, think thats the model number

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Guys guys, read. Title.

"... of a dead iOS device when all else fails"

Nice tip though.

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It doesn't.. the code is right there, feel free to look at it, you will see there is no network code at all.

I didn't check the compiled exe, but I did browse the source and I didn't see anything making a network connection in there. The code is non-malicious.

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