Thanks n1ckn4m3 for the reply. Good news and bad news regarding this. The good news the phone is up and running again with 4.1 firmware and 6.15.00 baseband. Jailbroke and unlocked obviously. The bad news is I had to take it to someone else to fix it so I will never really know what I did wrong even though I tried to ask where I had it fixed. The person that did the actual fix wasn’t in when I picked it up but I was told that they had to make a custom program to get it working again (what ever that means).
1.Regarding your reply, didn’t know that about the DFU modes regarding downgrading using SHSH. Not using pwned DFU during the factory attempts did seeme kind of obvious to me. In my defense, after the first day the phone never had the screen on so I really never had a clue to what DFU mode or not I was in.
2. As for the Hosts files, I checked these more than once and did have to edit them but that never changed anything.
3. Bet your right on this one but as stated it’s fixed and there is no way of checking this out now.
4. The SHSH is still the most confusing part of this whole process for me. Not for what it does via Apple but how TU associates it to my particular iphone when I’m trying to jailbreak it. Or when using Redsn0w or Sn0wbreeze with their SHSH options. Did finally figure out what your saying about the versions have to be specific towards the firmware version though. As of today I still have not found any good instruction on how to use the TinyUmbrella program. Bet the most damage I did was during this process.
5. From the start I always used the Redsn0w or Sn0wbreeze programs with the compatible firmware. Even with all the attempts I made they always matched.
So with that I guess this iphone nightmare is finally over until my apps stop running on 4.1 or they get an unlock for 5.0.1. By then maybe I will have better knowledge then I have had this time. There is still one BIG thing that bothers me about this whole event however. That’s if the firmware 4.3.3 was not supported by Apple then how the heck did I get the phone up and running the first (day) jailbreak attempt I made? And like I said before I even was able to make phone calls on it after unlocking??? That one will always bother me.
Thanks again for the assistance.
Yeah, from some of your questions it seems like you don't really have a handle on what SHSH are, when they apply, how you get them, and what their restrictions are. I'll try and elaborate but as I've said a lot of this before I'll keep it somewhat brief.
When you go to restore a version of iOS, iTunes determines the version of iOS you're restoring by reading the .IPSW, and sends it as well as a specific hash of data about your iPhone to Apple, asking them to validate the restore. If it is a current version of iOS (presently, only iOS 5.0.1 is being signed for the newer phones), Apple's signing server will reply with a 'Yes, allow the restore'. This 'Yes, allow the restore' response is personalized to the version of iOS and to the phone you're requesting it from (it uses both random numbers and the unique ECID/UUID of your phone to generate the hash initially). The "SHSH" is this actual reply from Apple, captured and stored. Back in the earlier days of SHSH, saurik (author of Cydia) set up an SHSH caching server, that would store the SHSH responses from Apple on your behalf, so that you could use a hosts trick to point to his server, and if you had logged in to Cydia when Apple was signing the version of iOS you wanted to restore to, Cydia cached your SHSH and would return it to iTunes when requested even if Apple wasn't presently approving the version of iOS you wanted to restore. This was before TinyUmbrella existed.
In general, this means that if Apple doesn't want anyone to restore version x.y.z of iOS anymore, they just stop replying 'Yes, allow the restore'. When iTunes does not get that response, the restore fails immediately and you get the "3194 - Device is not eligible for requested build" error. This allows them to police the versions of firmware that people are restoring onto their devices, thus making it harder for people to continually jailbreak, as it is no longer easy for users to downgrade.
TinyUmbrella does two main things -- one is that it pulls the SHSH files from Cydia's server and caches them locally, and the second is that it acts as a "TSS Server", which intercepts requests to Apple's signing server, evaluates them, and if it has the appropriate SHSH, returns that information to iTunes. This allows users to restore iOS 3.x to 4.x on their 3GS/4 so long as they have the SHSH files stored for them, even if Apple is not signing the version anymore -- because the TSS server is sending the proper response to iTunes, it has no idea that it's not coming from Apple.
It's worth mention that since iOS 5 added a random number (generated at every phone reboot) that SHSH files cannot presently be used to restore iOS 5.0.0, as after a single reboot, the SHSH created would be invalid, as the random number that was being included in the hash would have changed. This means that you actually cannot use TinyUmbrella to restore iOS 5.0.0, even if you have an SHSH on file for iOS 5.0.0.
So, nothing stopped you from restoring 4.3.3 and jailbreaking it originally because Apple was signing iOS 4.3.3 at the time that you restored, and jailbreaking a phone running the version of iOS you want to jailbreak doesn't require SHSH -- the only thing that requires SHSH is the actual restore of the version of iOS that Apple isn't signing.
Then, I'll touch on everything else in order:
1) Fair enough, I wasn't trying to dog you for it, though I do always recommend people do more research up front when they start doing things. It's always daunting to look at things that seem as complex as this and jump right in to learning, and sometimes messing things up teaches you a lot about how to fix them -- it's how I ended up moderating here, for example. Started out playing with a beta of iOS 3 and posting on the forum, etc., then over time it just kind of snowballed.
2) OK good. Having a line in your hosts file for gs.apple.com would cause error 20 or 21 when trying to restore iOS 5.0+.
3) Yup, no way to really check now, but hey, since it's fixed.... :)
4) Yea, SHSH are confusing, but I think that's because people think they're more complex than they really are. If you wrap your head around what I said above, you'll realize it's actually a pretty simple challenge/response system that Apple set in place (clever, I might add), and a method of breaking that protection (also quite clever, imo).
5) OK good, a lot of people don't know this as it's not normally how software works, so I see people all the time trying to jailbreak iOS 4.x with the 0.9.10b3, and similar.
Glad it was fixed, sorry you had to go somewhere to get it fixed, but hopefully this sheds enough light onto things that you'll understand better in the future.