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Glory be to hackers

12/23/06 @ 11:38:27 pm, Categories: Baka-chan on Games, 657 words, 2102 views  

A couple days ago, recently prolific PSP hacker 0okm released a proof-of-concept for a kernel access exploit under PSP firmware 2.80.

Now, for those who don't understand what that means... Most exploits, like the current TIFF exploit, can only gain user-level access to the PSP hardware... Access enough to run various things like little games and ebook readers with the help of something like eLoader... But not enough to access the flash or UMD subsystems, which means no firmware downgrading and no UMD emulation. (Read: Playing backed-up ISOs off the memstick.) Kernel access is the real magic of PSP hacking, it lets you do ANYTHING with the PSP.

With kernel access in 2.80 a reality, everyone knew it would only be a matter of time before we had a downgrader. This is exactly the moment I myself was waiting for when I swore I'd stop updating my firmware at 2.80...

Sure enough, 0okm delivered today, releasing a 2.80 to 1.50 downgrader. Reports however, were mixed... "It works!" "It's a fake!" "It bricked my PSP!" Eventually, as the community as a whole took a deep breath and stopped acting COMPLETELY INSANE, the truth started to come together; while it was a somewhat rocky release, it was real, and it worked. (Apparently, to get it out fast, 0okm put the downgrader together without the typical failsafes that prevent you from fucking up if a file isn't in the right place, and raving noobs were bricking their PSPs left and right from not being able to follow directions...)

Downgrading to 1.50 is great on its own, being the mainstay of homebrew and backup runners everywhere... But there's another part to this story that makes the 2.80 downgrader extraordinarily awesome.

See, the 1.50 firmware is missing a hell of a lot of features... It doesn't even have the web browser! Even 2.80 is missing a handful of nice features compared to the likes of 3.00 (The last feature update before the three 'security' updates 3.01-3.03)

This is where one of the other prolific PSP hackers, Dark_Alex, comes into play. He released custom firmware 3.02 OE-A just a little while ago.

This custom firmware gives you all the latest features the PSP has to offer, compatibility with all the latest games, the ability to run homebrew for ANY firmware version, AND the ability to start homebrew and ISO images directly from the Cross Media Bar as if they were normal software. (On top of that, it cracked the DRM on the PSOne game emulation, so you can share games and whatnot.) The catch is, custom firmwares can only be installed from 1.50, so anyone with a firmware higher than 2.60 (The highest previously-downgradable firmware version.) were out of luck.


Now, I don't support piracy. I don't believe in downloading games for the sake of never paying for them, no. I believe in downloading games for the sake of knowing if you WANT to buy them or not.

I believe, that the kind of people who pirate something for the sake of not paying for it, never would have bought it in the first place, so it's kind of a moot point. Anyway, I like being able to thoroughly test something before I buy it, especially with prices being what they are.

I tried an online rental site a couple weeks ago, GottaPlay... Tried to rent Every Extend Extra, Lumines II, Metal Gear Solid Portable Ops, Metal Gear Acid, Metal Gear Acid 2, Metal Gear Solid Digital Graphic Novel, and Ace Combat X.

In the course of my two week trial, they managed to get me Every Extend Extra, which was nice, and worked (Which is a bigger consideration than I had imagined...), and Ace Combat X, which told me to update to 2.81...

So yeah, I did it. And it worked. I had a 1.50 firmware ceramic white PSP... (Which was a stock 2.50 PSP when I bought it a year ago.) And then I had a glorious divine portable device of unlimited potential, running custom firmware 3.02 OE-A.


nani sore?
A peek inside the mad, mad, mind of Baka-chan. Animator, artist, hater of stupid people, and evil genius. Look upon the undoing of all order in the universe, and tremble.
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