Forgetting your iPad passcode can be a hassle. You could easily get locked out of it because there’s also a limit to how many times you can enter a different four- and six-digit combo. Once you hit that limit, your iPad is disabled.

Even if you’re careful enough not to abuse the limit, your iPad is still unusable if you don’t remember the passcode. In that case, your only option is to use a PC or Mac to put your iPad in recovery mode and then reset it.

Keep in mind that this will delete everything on your iPad from data to settings preferences and even passcode. It makes your device brand new again, allowing you to set it up from scratch. You should have nothing to worry about if you have a recent backup that you can use to restore your data and settings. If you don’t, your only resort is to go ahead with the reset and later recover whatever is saved in iCloud.

If you’re using a PC for the process, make sure that it has 1) Windows 10 or later and 2) the Apple Devices app or iTunes installed. You also need a cable that can connect your iPad to the computer.

Begin by turning your iPad off. Here’s a detailed guide on how to turn your iPad off regardless of its model.

Then, put your iPad in recovery mode. If you’re on a Mac, begin by finding out which MacOS you’re using. If you’re on macOS Catalina or later, open a Finder window. If you’re using macOS Mojave or earlier, open iTunes. Close and reopen iTunes if it’s already open. Open the Apple Devices app or iTunes if you’re using a PC.

Then, connect your iPad to your computer via a USB cable. While it’s connected, press the following buttons according to your iPad model. Your iPad is going to have a home button if it’s an iPad Pro from 2017 or earlier or an iPad Air, iPad Mini, or a standard iPad from 2019 or earlier.

If your iPad doesn’t have a home button, press and quickly release the volume button that’s closest to the top button, then press and quickly release the volume button farthest from the top button, and then press and hold the top button. If your iPad has a home button, press and simultaneously hold both the home and the top (or side) buttons. Keep holding until you see the recovery mode screen on your iPad. Release once you see it.

If you’re unsure about which button is which, this Apple Support guide can help.

The last step is to restore your iPad. Do that by looking for your device in the Finder, iTunes, or the Apple Devices app on the computer that it’s connected to. You’ll see an option to either Restore or Update. Choose Restore.

Your computer will take around 15 minutes to download software for your iPad and start the restore process. Wait for it to finish, and disconnect your iPad from your computer once it’s done. You should be ready to use your iPad now.

Need More Help?

How to Factory Reset an iPad
How to Reset an iPad
How to Restart an iPad
How to Take a Screenshot on an iPad
How to Connect Your Apple Pencil to an iPad

Want more of Gizmodo’s consumer electronics picks? Check out our guides to the best phones, best laptops, best TVs, and best headphones. If you want to learn about the next big thing, see our guide to everything we know about the iPhone 16.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *