You will need to download firmware 3.80 from Sony's official website in order to use this installer. Please note that use of any hacks to your system will void its warranty. Do not attempt installing custom firmware without carefully reading all instructions. This update will not work on PSPs with official firmware.
With the release of 3.71 M33, the team continues to provide homebrew users with all the features of Sony's recently released official firmwares. According to the Dark_Alex website, though, the main coder for the project is none other than the supposedly "retired" hacker.
Regardless of the drama surrounding the team, it appears that they've been consistently able to provide releases that match Sony's quite rapid schedule.
[Thanks to everyone that sent this in!]
Bringing downloadable games to PSP is one of the next things to tackle for Sony. echochrome was originally meant to be a downloadable PSN game for PSP, but it became much larger than anticipated. "It was initially going to be a download-service-only game," Koller said. "We changed it to a UMD because it's a very rich game. That's where their mind is. They're developing that kind of game." Thankfully, other downloadable PSP games are in the works. When can we expect them? In the next six to eight months.
In regard to the homebrew scene, Koller says that there were no talks between Sony and Dark_Alex, saying that "I think he's taking a hiatus." For even more, please visit MTV News for more.
Certainly, this is an unexpected twist in PSP development. How will the homebrew scene be affected by this loss?
[Thanks, Sergio and everyone else that sent this in!]
Not really. As reported by MaxConsole, the psuedo-celebrity programmer is currently taking exams, delaying progress on 3.50 OE. Supposedly, Sony has also made the latest firmware a bit more difficult to work with "because SCE changed the prx format those are now elfs marked as 0 sections. This means that current tools cannot disassemble those and thus it will be harder to reverse." Hmm ... sure.
Gamers that rely on Dark_Alex's open edition releases will have to be patient for the next release. However, considering the latest update focuses mostly on PS3 connectivity, will these release matter much for the homebrew community?
Q: Does Andrew hand-select his emails for Ask PSP Fanboy?
A: Yes. Some questions simply can't be answered, while others aren't worth answering at all.
Q: How many people have installed custom firmware on their PSP systems?
A: This is probably an impossible question to answer. There's no way of tracking all the PSP systems out there, nor is there a fair way of evaluating it. If we polled the PSP Fanboy community, it will be more likely that we'll have users of custom firmware -- but will a casual player even know about homebrew? Most likely not. The one thing we can say, however, is that custom firmware is becoming increasingly popular. A look at dark-alex.org's alexa stats reveals the incredible growing demand for custom firmware.
Some improvements include a crucial patch that resolves a memory writing bug that has been plaguing recent releases of Dark_Alex's custom firmware. The potential for bricking has also been reduced. Download the latest update from Dark_Alex's website.
Interested individuals can go to PSP Gen to download the upgrade file.
"3.30 OE at first will not have any innovation except the fact of being 3.30. It will take time due to problems with the hardware. Right now the priority for the future is to radically change the core of OE, to eliminate the instability of the programming (that is especially evident in 3.10) and to gain some more space for the ram. But this probably will take several versions before it is finishing, due to the complexness of the process."
While homebrew users wait for the "next big thing," will Sony be able to provide a truly worthwhile feature in their upcoming official releases? Free wi-fi was just one step in this continuous battle between Sony and the homebrew community.
[Update: DCEmu reports that Dark_Alex may have broken his PSP. Whoops--he's purchased a new one and is going to continue working soon.]
3.30 OE may not be as fully-featured as previous editions of the custom firmware. It appears that if Dark_Alex's team prepares the OE within the next 72 hours, it will be void of any extra functionality. Working on a more fully featured release will take a longer time--but the team notes that they are running the risk of running out of internal flash memory if the firmware becomes too large.
So, the homebrew coders are asking: to release 3.30 OE or not to release 3.30 OE? Some may want it now, but others may want a better version in time. We believe that, because 3.30 isn't supported by any retail games yet, that the team take their time to make a stronger, more feature-loaded firmware.
DCEmu is reporting that Dark_Alex already has a custom firmware version of 3.30 in the works. He's only just begun to decrypt the newest Sony firmware, but seems to think that it will be an easy nut to crack. Dark_Alex seems to think we won't have to wait long for a new custom firmware. This is good news for me and other PSP owners who currently run custom firmware. Let's just hope it comes out before the next big title that requires 3.30 firmware.
[Update 1: Fixed firmware list errors]
Dark_Alex, a student from Spain, shares a similar sentiment. "I think it is up to users to make the correct decisions about how to use my software," he said. "I believe in the presumption of innocence, unlike the media companies."
Read more about these two famed hackers in the complete BBC report.
Like many PSP owners, I like the added functionality of Dark_Alex's custom firmware. What I didn't like though was how Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters didn't work on my PSP because of it. Luckily, the fine folks at DCEmu have come up with a solution. Let me run you through it step by step, so you too can get Ratchet swinging his wrench on your custom firmware.
- First, totally turn off your PSP (not sleep mode)
- Now, hold down the right trigger and turn it back on
- This will bring you to recovery menu where you can change several options
- Configuration: Game folder homebrew (currently:3.XX Kernal), Use NO-UMD (currently:disabled), Fake region (currently: America), Free UMD region (currently:enabled)
- Advanced configuration: Plain modules in UMD/ISO (currently:enabled)
- CPU Speed: Speed in UMD/ISO (currently:266)
- Plugins: All disabled
And that should do it. Now you can play the greatness that is Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters. Thanks again for the great fix DCEmu community!
This is quite a novel idea. Dark_Alex has been following Sony every step of the way, releasing a new version of his Open Edition firmware almost immediately after Sony releases their official update. Now, homebrew users have a pretty ingenious way of finding out if there's a new version of Dark_Alex's homebrew-enabled firmware: use Network Update! Long considered vile by homebrew users, Xandu and Team 280 have created a plugin that allows you to use PSP's firmware checker to download Dark_Alex's latest. Ironic, no?
Check out installation details at DCEmu. Of course, be warned: tampering with the BIOS of your system can lead to a brick. Also, the general success rate of this app hasn't been too high: only about 2/3 of users seem to be able to successfully connect to the Updater.