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readbmr 04-03-2008 06:04 PM

nokia n81 8gb just debranded to latest firmware
Hi just to let anybody no who owns a nokia n81 8gb ive just upgraded my firmware to the latest with no problems, hope im allowed to post this but thought i would let other owners no as there does not seem to be many posts on this issue, if anybody needs product codes let me no or p/m me and i will try and help you, basically my phone was on 02 and now it has been debranded, brilliant now and lots of improvements etc....


fl0r15t 07-03-2008 07:32 PM

I did my N81 8GB (N81-1 RM179) today (on Vodafone). Wasn't exactly problem free!!

Switched code to a generic Euro 2 with Nemesis, ran the NSU to do the v11.0.045 upgrade which went OK. However on re-starting I just got the message: "Phone start-up failed. Contact the retailer". I thought I'd screwed the pooch! Couldn't do anything with it.

Finally manged a system reset by holding down 'green', '*' and '3' on power up. You got about a second to select "offline mode" and I finally got it going (after putting in my lock code - which I had asked to disable before the whole process). From there I was able to reset to "factory" using Settings\General\Factory Settings. Took a good few minutes to reset. From there it has worked fine.

Performs much smoother than the previous v10.0.053 firmware and I'm now very happy. All the APs, Contacts, Apps, etc seem unaffected.

If you are going to do it then remember it is at your own risk and you could end up with something that is next to worthless! It's just a sad that the phone networks/Nokia don't pass firmware updates on more swiftly then we wouldn't have to risk our phones! How long can it take to cripple a firmware to take out IM, Nokia Music Downloads, etc and just add a bit of branding etc...

steven338uk 12-03-2008 10:17 AM

thanks for the post but can you give me the euro product code for my n81 8gig on 02 so i can debrand mine many thanks steven338uk
email is

slawer 05-04-2008 02:14 PM

Just to help people in my situation, I managed to update my N81-8GB (on vodafone) using the following process(codes can be found here also):

I used the code from 0557936(Vodafone) to 0544169(on- site). Following their instructions, and then I had the same problem as fl0r15t:

I got the error message "Phone start-up failed. Contact the retailer", which is a worrying message. Thankfully I had read here before I did, the update and then pressed and held *, 3 and green on startup. Unlike fl0r15t though, all I had to do then was put in the region, time and date. It now works fine, and it is completely unbranded. I can confirm that this will not unlock your phone if that is what you were after, but it does mean that you can enjoy the latest firmware.

I believe the problem in the updating lies in the fact that the update is meant to keep your previous settings and files, but due to the branding... these are incompatible so it needs a hard reset.

Obviously, do this at your own risk, if something should go wrong in the process then I am not sure how sympathetic your mobile operator will be about you bricking your phone whilst trying to remove there services.

A big thanks to fl0r15t for taking the time to post there experience, and helping me to bypass the stupid operator software. The phone works better now, only did it 10 minutes ago, but so far I have noticed the map software loading faster and the navi wheel being quicker.

If you are just looking to get rid of the vodafone live softkey, you can do this in settings->general->personalisation->standby mode, here you can change all of the shortcuts.

Good Luck.

dean1000000 07-05-2008 01:58 PM

hi, could you send me the n81 product code for the 8gb vertion i have it on o2 uk as well.

grumpygrim 08-05-2008 06:35 PM

Hey, could someone basically give me an idiot's guide on how to do this please? I have a N81 8GB branded to the Vodafone network. Thanks

slawer 15-05-2008 02:39 PM

The idiots guide is this:

1) Go here: and change code to 0544169, which it gives as the code for the N81 8GB. This step tricks nokia updater in to thinking you have a generically branded phone, and then updates the phone.

2) After update if you get the message "Phone start-up failed. Contact the retailer". Press and hold *, 3 and green on startup to reset the phone. Then do what it says and you are done.

Additional notes

1)Whatever you do NEVER turn off your phone during updating as this will brick your phone, even if it looks like it has gone bad wait for it to stop.
2)You may lose all information on your phone doing this, so back it up.
4)It will not unlock your phone, just unbrand it.
5)Do not blame me if it goes wrong, it worked for me on Vodafone and that is all I can say, it may not work the same again.

If you have specific problems, post and I will try and help. Do this before you attempt it if you are unsure of what to do.

Dean, I would just read my posts if you need a code. If you still can't find one, then stop trying to debrand your phone.

NOR_Andrsn 02-06-2008 06:05 PM

is the codes on cellomania for english? i need the coode for scandinavia!
thanks in advance!

Micky! 10-09-2008 07:09 AM

Im going round in circles here. Is there a complete lack of support for the N81 or what? I cannot find a single list of product codes for thiis nseries. I guess im too used to the n95, and the support there is available for that.

Micky! 10-09-2008 11:04 AM

Changed product code to 0558072, which the Nokia site says V20 is available, but upon connecting to NSU, it states theres no updates. How on earth do you get V20?

fl0r15t 22-10-2008 01:14 PM


Originally Posted by slawer (Post 372175)
A big thanks to fl0r15t for taking the time to post there experience, and helping me to bypass the stupid operator software.

No problem, glad it was of some help.

Recently I have gone to fw 20.0.056 using NSS again (with prod code 0557872 that I got from a thread). Jumped essentially due to niggling things wrong with the firmware plus I couldn't get Nokia Maps 2.0 to work -I'd gone to 2.0 beta but couldn't get rid of it - had 'memory full' problems trying to install the release version. Tried numerous things with no joy. I have since reformatted thing (after making a backup) using *#7370# (same as the holding down keys method) to get back to the original version of maps (1.x) which I think I preferred on balance. From there the full release of Maps 2.0 will install OK but won't run. Oh well, I give up on that, life is to short! I'll use TomTom or Garmin instead until my contract is up and I can ditch the thing! Only a few months to go! Probably my last Nokia after this experience - I think it's going to be Iphone time!

The upgrade itself this time went a lot more smootly btw, no problems at all. Again the new firmware still has some niggling problems, like some Cisco wireless APs can't be accessed despite putting in all the settings. But it seems slightly smoother (demand paging and flash obviously are pluses). Haven't tried n-gage yet - I think that ship has sailed. Other than that it's early days - maybe I'll find it more stable, performant or feature rich over the coming months of it's life... maybe it'sll be worse. Who knows or cares!?

Micky! 05-11-2008 07:25 AM

Still no V20 available for my N81 8GB, which is still struggling on V11. Come on Nokia, have you forgot about us?

Micky! 21-11-2008 07:30 PM

V21 is now out for all N81 models..

kez66 02-12-2008 08:52 PM

n81 8gb help
can any 1 help, my n81 is on vodaphone i want to debrand it but dont know where to start or what software i need im a noob , some1 plz help is there some sort of step by step guide, thanks in advance :icon14:

shanecr 11-12-2008 03:22 PM


Originally Posted by Micky! (Post 401623)
V21 is now out for all N81 models..

weird, when i check, there is no update available. :con?

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