About MobileDevice

Created: Modified: Knowledge Base

GroundControl uses an Apple library called MobileDevice for certain operations, specifically iOS Updates. This library is built into macOS. On Windows, GroundControl links to a copy of MobileDevice bundled with Apple iTunes. Apple will update MobileDevice from time to time to support new devices or a new version of iOS / iPadOS.

iOS VersionMinimum MobileDevice VersionMinimum iTunes VersionNotes
iOS 14MobileDevice 1253Win64 | Win32Use these links for GroundControl 4.10.2+
iOS 14.5MobileDevice 1253.100Win64 | Win32
iOS 15MobileDevice 1253.100.1Win64 | Win32
iOS 15.1MobileDevice 1351.1Win64 | Win32

Check your version of Apple MobileDevice

GroundControl displays the version of Apple MobileDevice in the Launchpad and in the admin console’s Launchpad Detail page. Click the triangle next to the Launchpad version display to show the OS version and the MobileDevice version. You can also export this data via Launchpad actions.

Obtaining MobileDevice from iTunes

Apple distributes iTunes on the Windows Store and as a standalone installed. GroundControl requires the components bundled with the standalone version of iTunes. You may download these from apple.com using the link in the table at the top of this page.

Once downloaded, extract the MobileDevice libraries from the installer for silent iTunes-free installation. Please note installing MobileDevice requires a PC restart in order for the change to take effect.

How to extract DLLs from iTunes

32-Bit

  1. Download the Windows iTunes installer
  2. Extract the iTunes installer with a tool such as 7-zip
  3. Locate and install the following MSIs in order:
    • AppleMobileDeviceSupport.msi

64-Bit

  1. Download the Windows iTunes installer
  2. Extract the iTunes installer with a tool such as 7-zip
  3. Locate and install the following MSIs in order:
    • AppleMobileDeviceSupport64.msi

To silently install the MSIs, please install with the following command, modifying the .msi file name if installing the 32-Bit file version

msiexec /i AppleMobileDeviceSupport64.msi INSTALL_DRIVERS=1
Update MobileDevice

New versions of iOS may require new versions of MobileDevice for updating or restoring devices. See the chart at the top of this page for versions. However, Apple doesn’t distribute a standalone package for updating MobileDevice.

Windows

Download the latest iTunes using the links at the top of this page, and extract the DLLs again, using the process described above. Distribute the new DLLs using your software distribution method of choice.

Mac

Mac OS 10.15 or later:

  1. Navigate to about this Mac> System Preferences> Software Update
  2. Under “Other updates are available”, click on More Info…
  3. Select Device Support Update and Click Install Now.

Mac 10.14 or earlier

The only known way to update MobileDevice on Mac 10.14 or earlier is to perform the following steps:

  1. Over the air, update one iOS device to the latest iOS version. This can be a personal device or corporate device.
  2. Exit the GroundControl Launchpad app.
  3. Plug in the updated iOS device to your Mac. The Mac should prompt you to update your MobileDevice software
  4. Click Install, which begins an update mechanism for MobileDevice.
  5. Disconnect your device.
  6. Resume using the Launchpad app.

Unfortunately, this process can not be automated across many Macs.

Troubleshooting MobileDevice

If your PC is having issues recognizing devices or the Launchpad will not start up, please try the following:

1. Please uninstall all Apple support components from Programs & Features, and iTunes, if installed

2. Reinstall MobileDevice using the instructions above

3. There is a known issue on Windows that may cause devices not to appear as connected on Windows. Please see this support article for additional information.