AltStore is an appstore that allows you to install unofficial .ipa files of apps and games.
AltStore works much 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 Windows, iTunes must be downloaded from the official source, not the Microsoft app store; click one of the links below to download.
How to Install AltStore on iPhone:
- Plug your iPhone or iPad into your computer
- Open your browser and click one of the download buttons above to download the AltServer app to your computer
- Mac users – open your toolbar and click AltStore > Install AltStore. Choose your device
- Windows users – 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 device from the list
- Once AltStore has successfully installed on your device, leave AltServer running on the computer and open AltStore on your iPhone or iPad
- Download the apps you want
When you want to use AltStore to download apps to your iOS device, make sure your device is plugged into your computer, and you have AltServer running – the same must be done for any app update.
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 credentials to sign in ( you can use an app-specific password so long as you sign in using the same details as you used to install the app
- Tap on Settings > Account > Sign In and then tap Sign In once you have to input your details
- Tap Browse and tap an app title to see details or tap Free to install it
- 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
- Ensure AltServer is set to automatically launch when you turn on your computer and log in
- Leave your computer in sleep mode when you are not using it, with your device connected. The iOS firmware wakes up background apps when the device is connected but not in use
- AltStore should be opened once a day or so, allowing it to be prioritized by the iOS and ensuring more frequent app refreshes.
- AltStore has been designed is to check your apps frequently throughout the week – keeping your computer on, and your device connected ensures these are done.
AltStore App 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
- You need to use your computer to install AltServer so you can install AltStore on your device. You can enable Wi-Fi Sync on iTunes after, so you get a fully untethered experience
- You must do an ap refresh every seven days to continue using your apps
There are a couple of problems you might come across while trying to install and use AltStore:
- Dmg cannot be opened
Fixing this is simple and occurs on Mac computers. Open your Mac downloads folder and open the 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 Error Message
This tends to occur when you are refreshing the apps and is indicating that AltServer wasn’t found on your Wi-Fi network. Check that you are using the same network; if you are, it is indicating 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 appstore 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?
Riley Testut is responsible for developing the AltStore app, using a feature the 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 three active apps on your device at any given time, one of which is reserved by AltStore – that means you can install two more apps of your choice.
- What Apps will I Find in AltStore
- Delta Emulator
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 they do with 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 developed onto your device to test it. This feature was included with AltStore, ensuring your ID communicates with the Apple servers and let you install the apps you want through AltStore.
- Why Do I Need to Refresh The Apps Every 7 Days?
Because the certificates expire, if you are using a free Apple ID. Those with paid developer IDs do not face this. This is why AltStore tries to refresh your apps regularly; ensuring I can do this at least once per week stops the certificates expiring.
- Is AltServer required to be Running for App Installation or Refresh?
Yes. AltServer must be open and running on the Wi-Fi network that AltStore is on to ensure you can install and refresh your apps. 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 and then leave your computer in sleep mode a couple of times a week. If you are a Windows user, go into your settings and enable Network Connectivity under Sleep Mode.
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