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This frequently asked questions page lists the most common problems associated with using Wii U homebrew and does its best to provide solutions for you the reader. If you are having problems, chances are the solution to your problem(s) is present in this guide. Please at least skim through this guide before you ask your question to other people. Because, like I said before, the answers to your problems are most likely in here.
- 1 Before Installing Homebrew
- 1.1 What does this word mean?
- 1.2 Does Homebrew cost money?
- 1.3 Will using the Homebrew Launcher hurt (brick) my Wii U?
- 1.4 Is it illegal to use the Homebrew Launcher?
- 1.5 Will you help me install my modchip?
- 1.6 What kind of an SD card should I use?
- 1.7 What is the root of my SD card?
- 1.8 In general, how do I run homebrew?
- 1.9 Does Homebrew work on the Wii U?
- 2 Wii U Specifics
- 3 Wii to Wii U transfer
- 4 Homebrew on the Wii U
- 5 Homebrew Channel Questions
- 6 After Homebrew Installation
- 7 For Even More Help
Before Installing Homebrew
What does this word mean?
We have a glossary of terms here: Glossary
Does Homebrew cost money?
No. Everything is absolutely free. If you have paid for homebrew, you have been scammed.
Will using the Homebrew Launcher hurt (brick) my Wii U?
There is rare chance to brick (when you are patching IOS , for example) , Dimok and others may not be held responsible.
Is it illegal to use the Homebrew Launcher?
No, and it usually doesn’t even void your Wii U’s warranty, because it does not make any permanent changes. However, some homebrew, such as Haxchi, may void your warranty. Always read the disclaimers.
Will you help me install my modchip?
No. Modchips are not supported here.
What kind of an SD card should I use?
As long as they're formatted to FAT 16 (FAT) or FAT 32, most SD cards should work for you. All SD cards smaller than 256mb will not work for you because they are too small to be formatted properly. If you are still unsure which type of card to use, this page may help you: SD/SDHC Card Compatibility Tests. Also note that some exploits only work from a plain SD card.
What is the root of my SD card?
A place on your SD card that is not inside any folders.
In general, how do I run homebrew?
First, you run a browser exploit. The exploit crashes the Wii U and runs the Homebrew Launcher, assuming it can be found. Then, you are free to launch anything you want.
Does Homebrew work on the Wii U?
Wii U Specifics
How different is the Wii U from the Wii? Why is it not hacked yet?
Much about the Wii U is not known yet. If you want to know more about about the hardware, check the Wii U page. There are no exploits for Wii U mode as of yet. No one has found one.
What about the controllers?
The Wii U gamepad uses a form of Wi-Fi Direct (Wi-Fi P2P), likely something similar to Miracast, to provide low latency communication with the console. There is currently no way to interface with the gamepad. The Wii U Pro controller uses bluetooth, it is possible to use it on a PC with WiiNUpro (http://www.wiinupro.com/) Wii U GamePad / Wii U Pro Controller
Can Wii U Save files be modified to create a new exploit for the Wii U?
Maybe , Wii U Save files are accessible with Cafiine , WUPServer but there is actually no save exploit discovered. While the Wii U can store save files and programs on external storage, the external storage devices cannot be read because they are either encrypted and use a propritary filesystem.
Wii to Wii U transfer
How does the Wii to Wii U transfer work?
In a nutshell, the process goes like this: (1) Insert an SD card into the Wii U and prep it using the Wii Transfer tool which can be downloaded from the vWii Shop Channel. (2) After that's finished, take the same SD card and put it into the Wii. Run the Wii Transfer tool, which can be downloaded from the Wii Shop channel. (3) After that's finished, take that SD card and put it in the Wii U. Select the next button to copy the data from the SD card to the Wii U. The data will then be deleted from the SD card. So that's Wii U -> Wii -> Wii U.
Well, the first thing that happens is that the Wii U prepares the SD card by creating a file, /private/wii/app/HTCE/data/content00.bin. This file probably contains information about the target Wii U console; it averages about a megabyte in size. Then, when the wii runs its transfer tool, it creates a file in the same directory called content01.bin. This contains all the data from the Wii, such as save files, Virtual Console games, and other things. It is moved from the system memory onto the SD card. Its size ranges, depending on the amount of things to be transferred. Now, after inserting the SD card back into the Wii U and continuing the process, the Wii U copies the data from the file content01.bin onto it's memory. Finally, the Wii U erases the transfer data from the SD card.
Is it safe to transfer data to my Wii U if I have homebrew on my Wii?
Yes. So far the transfer tool only moves legitimate data from the system memory to the SD card. The Homebrew Channel and other such data will be left behind, and the transfer will go smoothly.
Homebrew on the Wii U
How does homebrew on the Wii U work?
They were loaded by the web browser directly (browserhax) , in MP4 Files (using the stagefright 5.4/5.5 exploit) Now , there are launched by the Homebrew Launcher , an homebrew similar to the Wii's Homebrew Channel which can be loaded by web browser or home menu (using haxchi)
How can I install homebrew in Wii mode?
You must use a savegame exploit, like Smash Stack of Bathaxx or use Wuphax , to run code. You can run the hackmii installer to install the Homebrew Channel using one of these exploits.
How safe is it to install Homebrew in Wii Mode?
Well, as of right now, there are no problems installing or running standard homebrew applications or the Homebrew Channel in Wii Mode. Be very careful, though. Do NOT install any applications which modify the NAND unless you KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING. Because Wii Mode differs slightly, some modifications that worked on the Wii will not work in Wii Mode. Unless you know what you're doing, it would be best to avoid the risk of bricking Wii Mode altogether. Better safe than sorry.
Is there any brick protection for Wii Mode, like bootmii or priiloader?
No, no brick protection exists for Wii Mode. There is no bootmii for Wii Mode, and Priiloader doesn't work with Wii Mode - it will cause a brick. On the upside, if Wii Mode is bricked, the normal Wii U Mode will still work, even though Wii Mode won't load. If you want to avoid a brick, don't use any homebrew which modifies the NAND, plain and simlple.
Is there a list of compatible exploits for Wii Mode?
Yes, take a look at the Wii Mode page.
Homebrew Channel Questions
When installing the Homebrew Channel it fails to find boot.elf or boot.dol
Make sure the Homebrew Channels boot.dol file is in the root of your SD card. If that still does not solve your problem, try a different SD card. Some SD cards are simply not compatible with exploits. SD Cards smaller than 256MB will not work. Note: SDHC cards cannot be used to install the Homebrew Channel from an exploit if the Wii itself does not support them.
Where are my apps? The Homebrew Channel is only a screen with bubbles.
Make sure that you have these three basic things set up for apps on your SD card:
- There is a folder in the root of your SD card named apps. NOTE: apps is case sensitive. It can not be named APPS, aPpS or anything else other than apps in all lower case letters.
- Make sure that no more and no less than one folder is between the apps folder and the boot.dol or boot.elf file of an application.
- Make sure that each of your applications have a path that looks like: /apps/afolder/boot.dol or /apps/afolder/boot.elf
Also, make sure you are using a correctly formatted SD or SDHC card or USB device. (The card you used to install the Homebrew Channel will also work to run apps from).
Invalid Wii App
Convert the .elf file of the application to a .dol file with the ELF to DOL Converter.
I have another question...
Read the official HBC FAQ to find your answer.
After Homebrew Installation
Is it safe to update my Wii U?
It is recommended to block system updates on your Wii U by changing the DNS server to something that blocks updates, as Nintendo might patch browserhax or Haxchi in an update.
I am looking for an app that...
Please refer to the complete list of Wii U Homebrew Applications here: Homebrew Applications List If you can not find an application that does what you are looking for it is either 1) Not supported by WiiBrew or 2) It doesn't exist. NOTE: New applications are being created just about every week so check back often.
Downgrading is not recommended. Every Wii U system menu version will work equally well with homebrew at the moment and the risk of downgrading is not worth the reward.
For Even More Help
This FAQ stinks! It didn't solve my problems!
Please refer to all of these WiiUBrew pages for further assistance:
I still have problems/questions/concerns
Please post a topic in our WiiBrew Forums and you will be assisted shortly after.
I don't have time to read! I need help NOW!!! Like, this-instant NOW!!!
Please go to the IRC. The server is EFNET (irc.efnet.org) The channel is #wiihelp. If you do not have an IRC client you may use mibbit to access the IRC with this link: Mibbit WebIRC. When you get to the channel, please remember to read the rules by typing "!rules" without quotes in the channel.