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Posts with tag dark_alex

3.03 OE-B firmware unlocks full-res video

Dark_Alex's "Open Edition" firmware has all of the functionality of Sony's official 3.03 firmware ... and then some. Previous versions of this homebrew-friendly firmware allowed for playing back illegal copies of ISO files. While we don't support such piracy at PSP Fanboy, we do have to commend Dark_Alex and the latest revision of his hacked firmware: it plays back full resolution (480x270) AVC video, something Sony has been very reluctant to support (with P-TV being one key exception).

If you're running a homebrew-capable PSP, you may want to consider upgrading to this hacked firmware. Downgraders are available for PSPs, firmware 2.71 and below, for those of you interested in downgrading, and then upgrading to this hack. I personally hope that Sony realizes that this is a major blow, and seriously considers officially unlocking the PSP's video capabilities in a future firmware upgrade. Until then, one of my PSPs will be running 3.03 OE-B.

Non-bricking TA-082 downgrader released

Homebrew enthusiasts know that there's a special kind of PSP that can't downgrade... until now. Some PSPs have a TA-082 motherboard which prevents downgrading to a homebrew-capable firmware, but whiz-kid Dark_Alex seems to have worked his programming magic yet again and has created a downgrader for y'all running firmware 2.71. Considering the technical proficiency this guy is capable of, shouldn't he be hired by Sony by now?

[Thanks, ldd. Via MaxConsole]

See also:
Fake downgrader angers homebrew community

Hot tools for the PSone emu user

Dark_Alex's hack of Sony's official PSone emulator has really revamped the PSP homebrew scene. There are two new programs available for those of you that are converting your own PSone games. First is the PopStation GUI creator, which allows you to make those nifty loading screens that appear in the XMB before choosing a PSone game. It's a simple, and whole-heartedly welcomed program.

Next up is an updated version of CW Cheat, which allows you to play around with various cheats and hacks in your favorite PSone games. Not only will it let you cheat, but it'll also let you take screenshots in-game, adjust the clock speed, and shoot fire out of your mouth more.

While these programs will enhance the experience of PSone games on the PSP, they're almost useless for people like me that have lost the original discs--Sony's official PlayStation Store is where I'll have to get my fix. C'mon, Sony! Don't let the homebrew scene outdo you yet again!

Using your own PSone games for emulation [Update 1]

That Dark_Alex kid is up to it again. His custom firmware currently cracks the protection that PSone games from the PlayStation Store utilize. However, it looks like the next revision, called 3.02 OE-B, will support the ripping of ISO files and turning them into EBOOT files to launch via XMB. This means almost any PSone game you own can be transferred to your PSP. You'll see Castlevania: Symphony of the Night at work in this YouTube demo. Amazing, isn't it? Hopefully, this will convince Sony to release their PlayStation Store games at a much less craptacular rate.

[Thanks, jamie!]

[Update 1: Now available for download at MAXCONSOLE.]

PSone games hacked in custom 3.02 firmware

It looks like Dark_Alex has done it again. His latest custom firmware release will allow your PSP to emulate the 3.02 firmware while running homebrew as if you have a very homebrew-friendly 1.50 PSP. Of course, the custom firmware goes even beyond that: it'll strip region encoding off of UMD movie playback, and more importantly, it'll get rid of the DRM protection of the current lineup of downloadable PSone games. The 3.03 firmware most likely protects the system from such vulnerabilities, but it's clear that the homebrew community is furiously fighting Sony.

There's no doubt that this is a very huge and crippling blow to Sony's anti-piracy efforts. While we don't support piracy here at the Fanboy, we can understand the huge frustration of the gaming community with Sony's PSone download efforts: stop making a PS3 required, please?

[Via Opposable Thumbs]

Homebrew impostor will brick your system

One of the dangers of using homebrew is that there's always a chance that something bad will happen to your system, causing it to be completely useless, or "bricked." A user of the MaxConsole forums has discovered an impostor pretending to be Dark_Alex, one of the homebrew community's most prominent members. His site,, is a complete replica of the original programmer's site, but features some very malicious files. Unfortunate users that download a file from the impostor's site will discover that their system no longer works. It's unfortunate to see such malevolent intentions on the internet ... be careful!

[Via DCemu]

Homebrew developer Dark_Alex expresses confidence for 3.0

Dark_Alex is one of the most prolific homebrew developers out there. He's the man behind the incredibly popular 2.71 custom firmware, and in a recent interview, he expressed his confidence in keeping up with Sony's firmware upgrades. With 2.80 being able to launch homebrew, it seems like the coding community is ready to face the challenge of Sony's upcoming 3.0 firmware. "No matter how difficult they make it, it's just code that can be decompiled. They cannot make magic, their archives must decrypt somehow, and that way is somewhere in their code."

Because of his familiarity with the PSP hardware, Dark_Alex places some doubt on the possibility of full-speed PSX and N64 emulators: "One for the Playstation could be made if somebody dedicates a long time to it(months). And for N64...well, I do not believe that it can go full speed unless it is made for a specific game."

See also:
Creator of GBA emulator speaks out
More interviews with more homebrewers

[Via PSP Home]

Custom firmware allows the best of both worlds [Update 1]

Super-programmer Dark_AleX continues his amazing work on the PSP by releasing a "Special Edition" firmware that combines 2.71's functionality and 1.50's homebrew compatibility. It's not the easiest process in the world, though (and it won't work on TA-082 PSPs). You'll have to create a DXAR file, and copy some complicated-looking files around. Once you install the custom firmware, you'll be able launch homebrew from the XMB, run ISOs, and legit games too. It's like having your cake, and eating it too.

[Thanks bumpi, Via PSP Hacks]

[Update 1: An easy installer has just been released.]

2.71 downgrader now available [Update 3]

Downgraders allow people who regret having upgraded their PSP firmware to take a step back in time. Previous downgraders only worked up to 2.5 firmware, but today's downgrader will work with PSPs, firmware 2.71. This program takes advantage of the libtiff exploit uncovered a few days ago and is provided by Dark_Alex, with the help of Mathieulh. As long as you follow the directions, your system shouldn't be bricked, but as is the case with any program that alters crucial system software, you should run the program AT YOUR OWN RISK. It's not going to be easy, but if you're determined, this is the key.

See the development website to get the file. Before you begin, make sure you do not have a TA-082 PSP. Check the picture to the right to see how to identify your system. If you see that text in your UMD reader, you're out of luck... for now (the homebrew community is hard at work for you too!).

[Update 1: Links to the original source of the downgrader. You gotta give credit where it's due! Thanks, DCEmu!]
[Update 2: QJ reader Mr. Dank has provided a video of the process. Watch after the cut.]
[Update 3: Just visit this page to see a really easy way of using this software.]

Continue reading 2.71 downgrader now available [Update 3]

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