Extracting files from the recent HomePod OTA firmwareAugust 01, 2017 · 2 minute read
If you haven’t already heard, Apple accidentally published a prerelease build of audioOS through their public update servers. Whether or not this leak was “intentional” is up for debate, but I personally believe it to be a mistake.
To start off, you’re going to want to fetch the OTA firmware from this direct link. The link is hosted by Apple and has not been tampered with.
UPDATE: Apple has obfuscated the HomePod OTA so that it does not unzip properly. As the original firmware contains copyrighted content, I am unable to share it; please do not ask. The original file had the following hashes:
SHA1: 7b3447ba4bb08efd139f74b23442e52cd19157d1 SHA256: 4d864a6d59d83b2e09ebc54848cf73c07a737d0d602e982e995e7ed45b668a8e
Once you’ve finished acquiring the firmware, go ahead and unzip it. For the sake of brevity, I recommended you rename the folder to something more memorable, like
Let’s open the
firmware folder. We’re looking for a file named
payload. Navigate to
firmware/AssetData/payloadv2 and you’ll find the payload file. Copy this file to your Desktop or to the root of your
Ensure you have the appropriate Developer Tools installed. On macOS, launch Terminal and run
sudo xcode-select --install. I already have Xcode installed, so
xcode-select kindly warns me with the message shown above.
Additionally, you will need to install xz via Homebrew using the commands below:
/usr/bin/ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install)" brew install xz
With the terminal window still open, clone the repository linked above with the following command:
git clone https://github.com/matteyeux/iOS-Utilities
Then, compile the code:
cd iOS-Utilities make
At this point, you probably want to move the compiled binaries to somewhere easily accessible on your system. The following commands will move them all to your Downloads folder:
mv ./pbzx ~/Downloads mv ./ota ~/Downloads cd ~/Downloads
Now, let’s run pbzx:
./pbzx < payload > payload2
This will take a while. Be patient and wait for all of the commands to finish completely.
ota to extract the payload files in all their glory:
./ota -e '*' payload2
When the command finishes, you should see the following new folders. They are highlighted in blue below.
Sifting through the HomePod’s firmware is actually quite simple! Once you figure out all of the steps, everything else is a piece of cake. I encourage you to go and explore what else is lurking in audioOS!