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PS Vita VHBL for Motorstorm Arctic Edge is Now Available!


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147w ago - As previously reported, PlayStation Vita developer wololo has now released the PS Vita Half Byte Loader (VHBL) and updated the source code for the Motorstorm Arctic Edge buffer overflow exploit according to plan!

Download: [Register or Login to view links] / [Register or Login to view links] / [Register or Login to view links] / [Register or Login to view links] / [Register or Login to view links] / [Register or Login to view links]

To quote: If you are lucky enough to be one of the few owners of Motorstorm Arctic Edge, VHBL is now available for download.

Please report Success/Failure here or on our forums (wololo.net/talk). As you will see, installing homebrews is a bit of a pain, so if you’re a good hearted guy who understands my explanations in the readme, please feel free to share homebrews packaged “correctly” for VHBL.

Note: you can have several homebrews in one “install” file. For example if you zip all your PSP/GAME folder, all the homebrews in there can be installed at once by VHBL.

Credits

HBL port to the KR/US/EU/JP versions of the exploit by Wololo. Thanks go to:

  • Teck4 for the Motorstorm exploit
  • All the devs who made HBL what it is today, in particular m0skit0 and JJS
  • Mamosuke, j416, Some1, and all the other devs who kept the secret, that’s much appreciated guys
  • Monsieur2T2R for the cool VHBL icons/wallpapers

For now, I’m off to bed, but I'll be sure to post more in the days to come, with updates, tutos, technical explanations, etc...

Vita Half-Byte Loader

Vita Half-Byte Loader is a project to port the PSP homebrew loader HBL to the Playstation Vita, through the PSP emulator on the Playstation Vita.
For the latest news about Vita Half Byte Loader, check the VHBL Category on this blog.

Half-Byte Loader (HBL) is an open source Homebrew Loader for the Sony PSP and the PS Vita. It allows to play fan-made games on any PSP up to firmware 6.60, and on the Vita up to firmware 1.61. HBL allows to run emulators for the Game Boy, Nintendo 64, Sega Megadrive, NES, Super NES... and many other applications.

Disclaimer

  • VHBL does not technically allow you to play any pirated PSP or Vita games.
  • Although VHBL is free and open source, the current version relies on a vulnerability in a specific PSP game (Motorstorm Arctic Edge) that you need to buy from the PSN. VHBL comes with no guarantee, especially I cannot guarantee it will work on your Vita, so remember that you pay for a PSP game, and not for anything else. I do not do refunds for the money you gave to Sony
  • It is super easy for Sony to patch the vulnerabilities used by this tool, given the amount of control they have on the PS Vita. VHBL runs fine on firmware 1.61, but for all I know it is possible for Sony to patch the game’s vulnerability without a firmware update. So, once again, before buying the game and downloading VHBL, you need to understand that you pay for the game, and VHBL is a bonus that might or might not work

How to Install and Run HBL

  • It is *strongly* recommended that you turn of all wireless connections on your PS Vita, and that you use OpenCMA (wololo.net/downloads/index.php/download/1252) on your PC instead of the regular CMA. This is recommended because otherwise your console has a way to force you to upgrade the firmware even before you get a chance to use the exploit.
  • Extract this HBL archive in your CMA PSP Savedata folder. It is a folder on your PC named PSSAVEDATA/[lots of random characters here]. If you don’t know where it is, check your settings in CMA
  • Connect your PS Vita to the PC through the CMA, it should give you the possibility to copy the savedata from your PC to the Vita. If not, you probably extracted it in the wrong folder. (Note: You will also want to install some homebrews with a similar technique, read the section below)
  • To run HBL, start the Motorstorm game, select “Load” in the savegame menu, open the HBL savegame, then go to “Wreckreation > Time Attack” and select “No”. At this point, HBL should start. See the video below for details:








Motorstorm Arctic Edge VHBL r141 Changelog:

  • Games using the Quake Engine such as KurokPSP (and probably Quake itself) now work!
  • Geometry Wars Portable, which was also not working for some reason, is now working fine.

How to Install and Run Homebrews

Installing homebrews on the PSP was an easy task. On the Vita, until better solutions are provided, it’s quite a pain in the ass.
The CMA will only let you copy savedata, and will not recursively browse folders.

To address this, HBL comes with a tool that can extract archives with a specific structure.

Packaging the homebrew for installation on the Vita:

1) download PSP homebrews from your favorite Web site (wololo.net/downloads)
2) extract the homebrew somewhere on your hard drive, and with your favorite utility, zip it again with the *store* setting (no compression), in a file that you will name “install.zip”
3) take any PSP savedata (but not the one used for HBL!), and add the “install.zip” to that folder, in your PC CMA folder. so your PSP Savedata will look something like this:

in folder PSSAVEDATA/1a2b3c4def5678/UCUS12345000/ (or something like this) you will have the following files:

  • ICON0.png
  • PIC1.png
  • DATA.bin
  • PARAMS.SFO
  • install.zip

Here you can download an example of packaged homebrew: Doom ([Register or Login to view links])

Installing:

1) run OpenCMA on your PC, and CMA on your Vita
2) copy the previously packaged SAVEDATA (see above) with your homebrew in “install.zip” on your Vita
3) run HBL (how to run HBL is explained in the previous section)
4) navigate with the HBL menu to the SAVEDATA folder, then go to the folder you just downloaded (in my example, UCUS12345000), and clikc cross or circle on it
5) At this point, the HBL menu should ask you if you want to install the homebrew. select yes, and wait until HBL is done extracting your homebrew
6) The homebrew is now installed, and you can run it by going to the GAME folder, if everything went well, a new subfolder with your homebrew has been created here, and you can run the homebrew

More

OpenCMA is strongly recommended to install if you want to use VHBL. Open CMA is a tool by Virtuous Flame that allows you to copy files from and to your vita without being connected to the internet. This is useful, especially if you don’t want Sony to forcefully update your firmware.

Looking for homebrews that run on VHBL? Check this list (wololo.net/wagic/2010/07/18/15-essential-homebrews-that-run-on-half-byte-loader/) of 15 essential homebrews that run fine with VHBL.

Quick Installing/Using VHBL FAQ

As you might have noticed, using HBL on the PSP wasn’t easy, but on the vita it’s even worse. That’s partially because of the many limitations enforced by Sony’s CMA, but also because I was too lazy to make too many improvements to HBL and the wMenu (mostly because I didn’t want to spend too much time on a tool that people might ditch at the next Firmware update)

Anyways, here are quick answers to the most frequently asked questions I got over the past 3 days

Do I really need to have Motorstorm Arctic Edge in order to run VHBL?

For now, yes. Later versions of VHBL (if any) might rely on other games, but for now, MAE is required.

I don’t have Motorstorm Arctic Edge, and I can’t find it on the Store, where do I buy it?

You can’t. Sony removed the Game from their store on March 2nd.

Is there a way to install Motorstorm Arctic Edge even if I didn’t buy it in time? By sharing my account with somebody, or downloading it from somebody’s server?

No. Each copy of the game is tied to the account that bought it, and Sony made it so that the game cannot be re-downloaded for now, even for those who bought it.

I tried to copy the exploit savedata, but The Vita tells me the data is corrupt, and refuses to copy it?

This seems to be happening mostly with the JP version of the VHBL exploit. Some sites have reported that if you mark all files in the savedata to not be read only, this will work. I’ll see if I can fix that in a future release.

I put a homebrew in “install.zip” as you explained, but the HBL menu isn’t able to install it. I’m pretty sure I did things right the “install.zip” file has to be a zip with “no compression” (also known as “store”. This option is available in most compression tools. I recommend 7zip.

I installed an emulator (or a Book reader). Now I want to install roms (ebooks) for it, do I have to reinstall the entire emulator?

In theory no, if you put the full path in your install.zip archive. For example, if you have a rom named “wololo.bin”, and want to put it in PSP/GAME/Snes9xTyl, just create all those folders, put the rom in it, and create an install.zip that will contain your rom (install.zip/PSP/GAME/Snes9xTyl/wololo.bin).

Practically, that can be difficult to remember, in which case the best is indeed to re-install the full homebrew with the roms in it. The benefit of this technique is that the HBL menu will detect the EBOOT file in your archive, and automatically understand where you want to install your stuff.

Note: you can have many homebrews in one install.zip, as long as they are in different subfolders. I personally simply zipped my entire PSP/GAME subfolder from my PSP Go, and installed the result on my vita)

How do I delete homebrews?

The easiest way is to go in the CMA on your Vita, and delete from there. Unfortunately it makes it difficult to know what you’re deleting. An alternate way is to install PSPFiler and use it to delete. I’m hoping to see some volunteer devs out there to provide alternatives if possible






Stay tuned for more PS3 Hacks and PS3 CFW news, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and be sure to drop by the PS3 Hacks and PS3 Custom Firmware Forums for the latest PlayStation 3 scene and PlayStation 4 scene updates and fresh homebrew releases!

Comments 191 Comments - Go to Forum Thread »

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#151 - Neo Cyrus - 153w ago
Neo Cyrus's Avatar
Quote Originally Posted by ModderFokker View Post
I hope a couple of exploits are kept secret until we actually can buy the damn thing.

(Not talking about import ....)

Meh, it's going to be a game of cat and mouse as usual. They're going to constantly tighten their draconian grip around the throats of their customers while more exploits to free the hardware keep getting released, an endless cycle like always.

As I said before I'm not even considering buying one until it's cracked wide open and until there are Micro SD to whatever-it's-proprietary-nonsense-is-called adapters. There will be for sure, just as there were 2 Micro SD to Pro Duo adapters.

#150 - moja - 153w ago
moja's Avatar
I wouldn't be surprised if the US launch saw an even later firmware (1.6?). Hopefully the scene for Vita stays motivated and finds some reliable homebrew.

#149 - Prince Valiant - 153w ago
Prince Valiant's Avatar
Indeed, at least he didn't reveal them specifically. I hope the launch firmware isn't very high for the US.

#148 - ModderFokker - 153w ago
ModderFokker's Avatar
I hope a couple of exploits are kept secret until we actually can buy the damn thing.

(Not talking about import ....)

#147 - PS3 News - 153w ago
PS3 News's Avatar
Since reporting on his last flaw uncovered, PlayStation Vita hacker SKFU has found a few new vulnerabilities in Sony's PS Vita handheld gaming system.

To quote via [Register or Login to view links]: Few hours ago, developer SKFU (known for his work on the PS3, but also recently for some investigations on the Vita security) posted a screenshot of his Vita showing some HTML in what is supposed to usually show official messages from Sony’s updates or packages.

Knowing SKFU's passion for everything network-related, I'm assuming he's doing some tests using some local DNS changes... or maybe he managed to put some of his own files in an official package? That would be exciting.

In previous tweets this week, he mentioned he found 2 potentially usable vulnerabilities on the Vita

VITA is back to life, since last tweet found 2 new possibile vulnerabilities. If it runs good, news in blog this evening!

That was, however, 2 days ago, and his blog wasn’t updated since then, so I’m assuming he ran into a few issues. (the “back to life” comment refers to the official 1.52 firmware which bricked his Vita…or appeared to do so... which turned out to be that the battery had to charge for almost 24 hours before the Vita accepting to turn on, for some reason)

Obviously lots of this experimentation will probably not lead to anything, but for now, every bit on info on the internals of the Vita is interesting. Let’s keep digging

Also from SKFU (linked above) is an update on the recent PlayStation Vita 1.52 Firmware status below, as follows:

Ok guys we tested the possibilities on firmware 1.52 for a few days now. What I can confirm is the following:

  • Tech4's exploit still works
  • Wololo's HBL still works
  • Everything I research atm didn't change from 1.50 to 1.52

If that is fine for you, there's no reason not to update. Anyways, I have to mention that this can change without a firmware upgrade!

If you are online with your PS VITA, it can download and install silent updates for any application which runs in usermode and has nothing to do with system critical modules.

The good is, those updates are removed once the system is restored to the current firmware, so it would not be a major problem to remove a fix.

- SKFU

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