AltStore is an app that allows you to install .ipa files on your iPhone.
AltStore works just like Cydia Impactor and allows the sideloading of unofficial apps and games.
Things to Know:
- The initial installation of AltStore requires a Windows PC or Mac computer.
- For those using a Windows computer, the iTunes app must be downloaded from the official source linked below, and not the Microsoft appstore.
How to Install AltStore on iPhone:
- Plug your iPhone or iPad into your computer
- Open your web browser and click one of the download buttons above to download the AltServer app to your computer.
- Mac Users – after installing the .dmg file, go to the toolbar on your desktop and click AltStore > Install AltStore. Choose your device
- Windows Users – after installing the .exe file, open your icon tray ( bottom right of the screen ) and click on the AltServer icon. Hover your mouse cursor above Install AltStore and select your connected iOS device from the list
- Once AltStore has successfully installed on your iOS device, leave AltServer running on the computer and open the AltStore app on your iPhone or iPad.
- Download and install the .ipa file of apps you want
Note: Make sure your computer has AltServer running when re-signing and installing new apps or app updates.
How to Use AltStore App:
- Launch AltStore on your iPhone or iPad
- If you get an Untrusted Developer error, open Settings > General > Profiles, find the developer name, and Trust it.
- In the AltStore app, use your Apple login details to sign in
- Tap on Settings > Account > Sign In with Apple ID and then tap Sign In once you have to input your details
- Once installed, the app is available to use in the same way as any other app.
How to Install IPA Files using AltStore:
- Find the IPA file you want from the internet and download it to your iPhone or iPad.
- Open AltStore and tap the app to sign and install it
- If that doesn’t work, find and tap the icon shown below
- Use AltStore to open and install the app
- Alternatively, open AltStore and go to the top-left of the screen; tap the “+” icon and go to downloads.
- You should see all downloaded files, tap the one you want, and tap Install. The app will show in the My Apps section as Sideloaded.
AltStore Pros and Cons:
These are the main advantages and disadvantages of using AltStore:
- You do not need to jailbreak to use AltStore
- Because you are creating and owning your own developer certificates, the apps cannot be revoked by Apple.
- Works to sideload apps the same way as Cydia Impactor does
- You can only have three active apps at any time ( i.e., Altstore + 2 more )
- You need to use your computer to install AltServer so you can install AltStore on your iOS device. You can enable Wi-Fi Sync on iTunes after, so you get a fully untethered experience.
- You must do an app refresh every seven days to continue using your apps
- Dmg cannot be opened
Fixing this is simple and occurs on Mac computers. Open your Mac Downloads folder and open the .dmg file from there.
- File Installation Failed
You may get one of the following error messages:
- “Installation Failed; you are not a member of any development team.”
- “Incorrect Apple ID or Password”
- “Your development team has reached the maximum number of registered devices.”
No matter which error message it is, you can only fix it in one way. Open https://appleid.com and generate an app-specific password. The errors occur because you have enabled two-factor authentication.
- Could Not Find AltServer
This occurs when you are refreshing the apps and indicating that AltServer wasn’t found on your Wi-Fi network. Check that you are using the same network; if you are, it indicates that your firewall or the network itself is blocking communication. Try reconfiguring your network, allowing device discovery.
Frequently Asked Questions:
We also get asked quite a few questions about AltStore. Some of these questions are answered below.
- What is AltStore?
AltStore is an alternative app installer for the iPhone and iPad that doesn’t require a jailbreak. It also does not rely on enterprise developer certificates as other alternative app stores do and, as such, cannot be revoked by Apple.
- Is AltStore a Jailbreak?
No, AltStore is not a jailbreaking app. AltStore is an installer that allows IPA files to be sideloaded and signed on your device, something that cannot be done with the official app store.
- How Does AltStore Work?
AltStore app uses a feature the Apple app developers use for testing apps before they go to the Official iOS appstore. The apps are self-signed on your computer rather than using enterprise certificates. However, you are limited to no more than 3 active apps on your device at any given time, 1 of which is reserved by AltStore – that means you can install 2 more apps of your choice.
- What Apps will I Find in AltStore
As you can see, there are few apps available right now, but this number will increase over time. You also have the option of downloading external IPA files and installing them.
- Can the AltStore Certificate be Revoked?
No. AltStore doesn’t use Enterprise Certificates, so Apple cannot revoke them and shut the apps down like other alternative app stores. Each user “Signs” their own apps with an individual certificate that cannot be revoked.
- Why is my Apple ID Required while using AltStore?
So long as you have a valid Apple ID, Apple allows you to install any app you have onto your device to “Test” it. This feature was included with AltStore, ensuring your ID communicates with the Apple servers and lets you install the apps you want through AltStore.
- Why Do I Need to Refresh the Apps on Altstore Every 7 Days?
Because the certificates expire every 7 days if you use a free Apple ID. Those with paid developer ID do not face this and it cost $100 per year. This is why AltStore tries to refresh your apps regularly; ensuring you can do this at least once per week stops the certificates from expiring.
- Is AltServer required to be Running for App Installation or Refresh?
Yes, the AltServer app must be open and running on the same Wi-Fi network that AltStore ensures you can install and refresh your apps on your device. You don’t need it running permanently, though; simply ensure it is active regularly, and your device is connected, and your apps will be refreshed – do this at least once a week to stop the apps expiring.
The easiest way around this is to have AltServer set to run automatically when you log in to your computer. If you are a Windows user, go into your settings and enable Network Connectivity under Sleep Mode.