New proof-of-concept lets users install VPN profiles on Apple TV

In what comes as a recent development, hacker Kevin Bradley has developed a new method to load VPN profiles on tvOS. This breakthrough aims to bring VPN and firewall support to all Apple TV devices.         

VPN support coming soon to tvOS   

A new proof-of-concept by Kevin Bradley aka nitoTV allows users to install a VPN on Apple TV.

It grants users the ability to generate VPN authentication credentials and share mobile configuration files from the Guardian iOS application to other platforms.

For the uninitiated, Bradley is an accomplished Apple TV hacker. He has developed countless tvOS jailbreaks and tweaks. Most of his research revolves around enabling iOS features on tvOS.  

Interestingly, tvOS does have the necessary code in place to handle VPN connections. However, this functionality is reserved for “internal” testing purposes.

Apple employees use this feature to connect to AppleConnect. Unlike iOS, Apple does not allow the average user to install a VPN configuration profile on tvOS.

This setting is accessible through a hidden menu on all Apple TV models. 

Apple TV hidden VPN profile

The stock tvOS operating system does not allow users to load their custom VPN profiles.

When Kevin tried to install without modifications a profile through Apple Configurator 2, the app immediately threw errors. The mobileconfig profile was then loaded via code. 

How VPN Installation works on Apple TV

Here’s a video demonstration of Guardian VPN and firewall running on tvOS.   

Kevin shows how the mobile configuration file generated from the Guardian app on iOS can be used to tvOS.

He then installs the Guardian app, which sends all internet activity through a secure IKEv2-based VPN tunnel.   

If you’re worried about App Store blocking VPN users, don’t – the App Store stills remains accessible.   

Since this method requires additional privileges, your device must run a jailbroken version of tvOS firmware.

If you have a checkra1n-compatible model, you should be good to go. For those still using an older OS, tools such as ElectraTV should suffice.

Release Date ETA

Kevin and his team have not shared a public release ETA yet. There’s still some work to be done and, of course, the team doesn’t want to release a half-baked product to the public.   

According to Will Strafach aka Chronic – the founder of the Guardian app, multi-platform support (tvOS, macOS, etc) is on the roadmap.

Users will soon have the ability to run the Guardian Firewall app and load VPN profiles on Apple TV. The average user will be able to install third-party profiles through nitoTV.      

This is a watershed moment for the Apple TV community!

As of now, this proof-of-concept has been tested on tvOS 13 and 14, but it should work on tvOS 12 and 11 as well.        

The ability to load and install custom profiles will allow millions to unlock the full potential of this device. Users will be delighted to have AdBlock on tvOS.   

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