Wii Softmod - Play homebrew & backup games without a modchip

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Wii Softmod - Play homebrew & backup games without a modchip

#1 Post by Administrator » Sun Sep 27, 2009 5:56 pm

First of all, I am not advocating the illegal use of playing backup games that you do not own. I suggest you only use backups of games that you already own a legitimate version of.

Additionally, everything here is use at your own risk. Although the chance of harming your Wii are very small, it's still possible (although usually recoverable). About the only real chance of damage is if you cut the power or turn the Wii off while installing software (or other information) to the Wii's NAND (system memory). This will void your warranty.

This is a guide from A to Z and even contains all the software you should need. Believe me, it is a pain to get all of the apps and tools that work well together. I've compiled a "no-fuss" guide and package for you.

A mod chip is not required. It is purely a software mod and is considered "safe". This method and all files here are legal as long as you do not use it to play games you did not purchase. I, and the developers of the software used to accomplish this, do not support that, so please no questions about how to run games you do not own.

  • A Wii with firmware version 3.2 to 4.1 (see here for information on 4.2)
    A SD card formatted as FAT16 (aka FAT) or FAT32
    Some way to transfer files from your computer to the SD card (I used my LG Vu phone w/ USB cable)
    A copy of the software pack provided below
  • An internet connection for your Wii (Saves you time and makes your job easier)
Attached package includes:
  • Bannerbomb exploit (w/ HackMii Installer)
    cIOS rev. 19 custom IOS
    NeoGamma loader r8 app
    NeoGamma loader r8 wad
    Trucha Bug Restorer
    Wad Manager 1.5

Step 1 - Prep. the SD card:
  • Simple enough, download the attachment and extract it. Copy everything to your SD card as-is. Do not modify the directory structure or file/folder names. All files and folders should be placed in the root directory.

    For example, if your SD card is mounted as F:, you should have:
    F:/apps/Cios Rev 14/boot.dol
Step 2 - Install the Homebrew channel:
  • Turn on your Wii and make sure you do not currently have the SD card in.
    Click the Wii button at the bottom left (NOT the SD card icon!)
    Click Data Management
    Click Channels
    Click SD Card at the top-right
    It should now say "Nothing is inserted in the SD Card Slot." This is good!
    Now, push your SD card in and and it should begin loading, then give a popup asking you to load boot.dol. Click Yes.
    You should now drop back to a black screen with white text. Press the A button to continue.
    When at the menu, select "Install Homebrew Channel". You do not need DVDX or BootMii.
    Restart your Wii and you should now see the Homebrew channel at your system menu (main screen).

    Problems? Try looking for more information here.
Step 3 - Restoring Trucha bug (if necessary):
  • If you're using older firmware (3.3 and below), you probably don't need this. If you have errors in the following steps (look for errors like -2011 or -1017), you should probably attempt doing this. I had to do this (w/ IOS15 downgrade/restore) using firmware 4.0. If unsure whether you need this or not, skip to the next step (step 4) until you encounter an error message (if you encounter one at all).

    Open the Homebrew channel and select Trucha Bug Restorer from the menu. When you load it, you should drop back to a black screen that asks you to select an IOS to use. Leave it at IOS36 (which should be the default), and press A.

    The top-most option should be something like "Patch Trucha". Try this first. It should be mostly automated. When it asks you where to download the WADs from, select "Download from NUS" (or whatever that option is named). This requires an internet connection for your Wii; if you don't have an internet connection for your Wii, see step 3B below for instructions on how to manually download and install your WAD files instead.

    Now it should be automated again. If it finishes without error, you're set. Move onto step 4. If you receive an error, see step 3A for instructions on how to patch via downgrading and restoring IOS15.
Step 3A - Downgrade IOS15, then restore.
  • Only do this if you received an error patching in step 3! It probably won't break anything if you do it anyways, but it isn't necessary.

    Again, just for reference, I needed to do this with firmware 4.0. So, if you have 4.0 or 4.1, you probably will need to do this step.

    Go back to Trucha Bug Restorer (TRB). From the menu, select Downgrade IOS15. It will, again, ask you where to get the files from. Select Download from NUS again if you have an internet connection, otherwise see step 3B for manually obtaining the WAD files. It will need to download two files, so don't be confused when it asks you twice. After the installation is complete, restart your Wii.

    After a reboot, load up TRB again. This time, instead of loading IOS36, select IOS15! This is very important. If you leave it at IOS36, you will receive errors patching. You should now be able to run the trucha patch (top option) and install everything without problem (as outlined in step3). When you are finished there, you may restore IOS15.
Step 3B - Obtaining WADs manually
  • Only do this if you were directed to Step 3B from somewhere else!

    The easiest way to do this is to download and install NUS downloader on your computer.

    You will use this tool to download WAD files to place on your SD card. Once you've put the WAD files on your SD card.
    For the IOS15 downgrade you need IOS15v257 and IOS15v266, for the IOS15 restore you need IOS15v266, for IOS36
    installations you need IOS36v3094 and for IOS37 installations you need IOS37v3612.
    I did not use this tool, so I'm not sure about the specifics. You'll have to check the readme files for TBR and NUS Downloader to figure it out.

    Once you've got the files you need where you need them and named properly, you will use "Download from SD card" instead of "Download from NUS".
Step 4 - Installing cIOS
  • Launch the Homebrew channel and load up cIOS installer. Just about everything here is automated again. It's pretty straight forward. If you need to download more stuff and do not have an internet connection for your Wii, see step3 above (you will have to obtain the WAD files yourself and put them on the SD card).

    If you get an install error such as -1017 or -2011, you probably don't have the Trucha bug and it is needed. Refer to step 3 for instructions on how to restore the Trucha bug.
Step 5 - Testing:
  • Assuming that all steps above succeeded, you should now be able to play game backups burnt to normal DVD-Rs, and install custom Homebrew applications.

    If you have a burned DVD to try this with, then put it in the Wii and return to the Homebrew channel (No, you cannot launch the game from the Disc channel (yet)!)

    Open NeoGamma Backup Loader and the top option should be "Launch Game". Try this. Hopefully, the game will at least launch (but you may expect some graphics trouble -- don't worry about this too much yet). If it launches the game, you've done everything correctly, and should continue to step 6 to learn how to install NeoGamma onto your Wii (so that you can remove the SD card, and won't have to go through the Homebrew channel to launch the game everytime).

    If you experience graphics problems (for example, one of my backups was running in black & white/grayscale mode), you should go to Region Options in the NeoGamma menu. Try changing "Force Video" to different options (such as NTSC480p). You might also try playing with Patch Video and VIDTV Patch. Return to the menu, then try loading the game up again. Repeat until it works properly, and remember these settings.
Step 6 - Installing WADs
  • This step allows you to copy Homebrew apps to your Wii so that you do not need to keep your SD card in it to use them. Also, it should add it to your system menu (main screen) for easy access.

    I have included a copy of NeoGamma Loader as a WAD file for you. If you want to install other WADs, place them in the 'WAD' folder at the root of your SD card.

    Open the Homebrew channel, and load WAD Manager. Follow the instructions to install or uninstall your WAD(s). Once complete, you can exit the Homebrew channel and you should now see your app at the system menu. You can remove your SD card at this point. To install or uninstall WADs later, you will again need to use your SD card with the WADs loaded onto it.
That's it. You are now ready to play your backups (via NeoGamma loader) or install your own apps (either copy the .dol files to the SD card or install them via WAD Manager). For a list of Homebrew apps you can install, see here.

If you want to be able to play your backups via the Disk channel (ie. like you would any original game), you can install something called cIOSCORP. This is not recommended since it will modify all IOSs on your Wii. Again, although the chance of something going wrong is slim, it is still a bit more risky and could cause trouble down the line. Also, there are a few games that do not load properly under cIOSCORP so you might need to use NeoGamma anyways. If you want to use cIOSCORP, just Google search for the latest version and install instructions.
cIOSCORP (only) allows your-region backups from the disc channel with 99% compatibility AND the ability to recover from any brick as long as the system menu main DOL (and IOS30) is ok. Requires a SaveMii, SaveMiiFrii, or Starfall with recovery-Y-press installed.
Of course, once you have installed everything, you should be OK to update your Wii's firmware although it isn't recommended (it might remove the patches you've made and make it impossible to re-patch). You do not need anything past firmware 3.2, anyways.
Wii softmod pack, Apr. 17, 2010
For firmware up to 4.2
(9.83 MiB) Downloaded 157 times
Wii softmod pack, Sep. 27, 2009
For firmware up to 4.1
(10.97 MiB) Downloaded 153 times

Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:43 am

Re: Wii Softmod - Play homebrew & backup games without a mod

#2 Post by Wolverine » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:54 am

I've been thinking about doing this softmodding with my Wii.

Thanks for your work. I'll dig into this :D

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