1. Telord

    OP Telord Newbie

    Apr 9, 2020
    Hey Guys!

    I know that this issue is not a new one and others have asked similar questions on the forums. Eventhough I've looked for an answer for a few hours, mostly on this board, and a few other pages Google suggested, i couldn't get a proper answer.

    So I have a Nintedo DS Lite with a R4 Flashcard for Slot 1. I don't know the exact version of the R4. It says "R4 Revolution for DS (NDS/NDSL)" on its sticker. It's 'very' old, like somewhere between 10-15 years. I also got an EZ Flash 3-in-1 Card for Slot 2. I also don't know the exact version here, it sould also be around 10 years old. The battery seems to be working. I get a rumble, when i start up 'LameBoy'. I also don't dare to open up the case of the flash card.

    Back then i booted oup GBA games using the GBAExploader Tool. I never really understood, what was going on there with all those options (i'm not a native english speaker) but i could games running. However, it felt like i could 'sometimes' save games and contintue later on with that save state. But oftentimes the save state was lost again and i couldn't find it/boot it up again with the Exploader Tool.

    Then sometime passed and i got the Wood Firmware for the R4. I haven't had it when i was starting with GBA games on the DS. The Wood R4 Firmware alows to boot GBA games right from the menu. So there was no need for the GBA Exploader anymore (i guess?!). With this 'new' method i could also save my files ingame and after starting the game again, the saves were still there. Most of the times. But here is the point. Why just "most of the times"? It seems so random when savestates are lost and when they stay (for a while).

    Does anybody know why this is? Why do saves get 'randomly' lost. And are there any ideas on how to work around this issue? Going back to the Exploader? But honestly i've red the tutorial on how to use the Exploader Tool so many times, but still i don't know what i am doing with it and if i am actually using it properly.

    I love playing GBA games on my DSL. But it's also frusttrating when you played a game for days and weeks, wake up next day just to see that your save file is lost.

    I really hope, someone can help me out. I am so thankful for any tips. Plus i am very sorry if i annoyed anyone. I tried finding an answer on this forums before i was opening this thread.

    Thank you :-)

  2. eddebaby

    eddebaby Newbie

    May 6, 2020
    United Kingdom
    Hi Telord,

    Unfortunately I don't have a solution, but just to say I am having similar issues myself (saves sometimes getting lost). I am trying to find a solution, but I am not there yet - I will try to update when I know more.

    I am using a R4i Gold 3DS RTS with an EZ Flash 3in1 (Version 2 - EZ5C13).

    Here is what I do know about using the 3in1 with Wood R4 (you may know all this, this is more to bring together info on this topic in 2020 for others searching the internet about it):

    • GBA Games less than 32MB are loaded to PSRAM by default (a game can be loaded to NOR by pressing Y on the GBA games in Wood R4 and selecting the appropriate option).
    • GBA Games greater than 32MB are loaded to NORFLASH.
    • The save data (SRAM) of the 3in1 can be backed up from the Wood R4 menu, but it backs up all 512KB of it, not just your current game's data.
    • Having the same game in PSRAM and NORFLASH is not a good idea (separate or conflicting saves?: needs more investigation).
    • Save data is written to the SD card when you change the game loaded in PSRAM/NOR (when you change the game in PSRAM it backs up the previous game in PSRAM to the SD card etc). There does not seem to be another way to save to the SD card.
    • Save data corruption seems to occur when saved to SD (with some games), it seems to be fine when it stays in SRAM on the 3in1.
    • There is an auto save game backup option in the Wood R4 menu, it either doesn't work well, or is just setting up the error in bold above.
    I am personally having an issue with SMSAdvance 2.5 (running Shining Force Gaiden: Final Conflict on Game Gear). I also had an issue with Final Fantasy VI, but that could have been related to having it both in PSRAM and NORFLASH, as I (think I) managed to get it in to a working state eventually.

    These emulators (like SMSAdvance) needed to be patched in the past, but I think that is no longer necessary (?), but I haven't had any luck yet - patches or not.

    Are there any games in particular that have an issue for you? Maybe they need to be patched?
  3. slaphappygamer

    slaphappygamer GBAtemp Addict

    Nov 30, 2008
    United States
    I think, perhaps, your battery is dead/dry in your 3in1. The save gets saved in one area of the cart, then upon next boot, it gets written to another area. If the battery is dead, and if you don’t immediately boot the console back up, then the save gets “purged”. It doesn’t get written to the other area. You should try changing your battery.
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