Hacking Homebrew app Having getting external hard drive to work with homebrew

BigSmellySarah

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Hi! So I'm quite an amateur at this stuff and have been attempting to resolve my issues on my own for a few days, and I figured it might not hurt to reach out for some help. I've found several threads that ask questions about problems similar to mine (some from this very forum) but have found no conclusive answers, and was hoping to find some updated opinions or advice (most of the threads I found were quite old).

I've been using an SD card on my vWii for a few years to run Nintendont without issue, but I wanted to upgrade and consolidate my storage and load up some Wii backups through USB Loader GX as well, so I went out and bought a 1 TB external hard drive. Unfortunately, I can't seem to get it to function with the system. I'll try to lay out my experience as clearly as possible, and what I have tried.

First off, when I try to get the Homebrew channel to detect the drive, the system crashes to an error screen that reads: "Exception (DSI) occurred!" I was going to post an image of this, but it seems to have been uploaded before. It's just a black screen with an error readout. I figured I might just circumvent accessing the drive that way by only using it in conjunction with USB Loader GX, since that's loaded on an SD card and not the HD. Unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be working out either. What usually happens is that the system freezes on the USB Loader bootup screen when it reaches the process of "Initializing USB Device" and needs to be unplugged. So, both of these errors I've been having have happened with the following tests taken: The drive has been tested with and without any files on it, and formatted as NTFS, EXFAT, and of course, FAT32. The drive is connected to the back two USB ports of the Wii U via Y splitter. The result occurs regardless of the USB port I designate USB Loader GX to check (right now I have it set to both). The drive is a Seagate 1 TB Backup Plus Slim, as I've used Seagate before for my Sony devices and never had any issues. Now, one recommendation I saw frequently for this issue was to change the USB Loader IOS to 58. When I do this, I get past the bootup screen and it almost seems like it's going to function, but when I actually get into the program it will not detect any files. In fact, the readout at the bottom says: "0.19GB of 0.19GB free - Games: 0" which is obviously not correct as it's a 1 TB drive.

I guess the most pertinent question to ask here would be if there are simply some external drives that are not compatible with the system. Other than that, I think resolving this issue is going to take some insight into the process of how all this works beyond what I have. If anyone could give me some recommendations for things to try, I would really appreciate it. Thanks!
 

Exidous

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I guess the most pertinent question to ask here would be if there are simply some external drives that are not compatible with the system.
There most certainly are compatibility issues. Bear in mind a drive has to work with the Wii hardware itself, the driver, and whatever homebrew software you want to access it. So compatibility isn't a binary question across all use cases.

This list is largely older hardware, but it's possible it includes your device:

https://wiki.gbatemp.net/wiki/USB_Devices_Compatibility_List

I don't have experience with vWii, but I can say for the original Wii that (older) USB 2.0 drives are safer bets than modern USB 3.0 drives. A lot of 3.0 drives have sleep/wake issues that a softmodded Wii just does not play nice with.

As I recall USB Loader GX will eventually load, even if it fails to detect a HDD (what it sounds like you're describing). But if USB Loader GX itself is hanging indefinitely that's very likely a different issue.

You mention testing the drive with different filesystems, but don't specify you tested them with the Wii U. In my experience USB loaders checking a FAT32 partition will look for a wbfs folder, and if they don't find it they might give up and try checking a different partition. So if you're just plugging a blank drive into your Wii U that could also be causing issues.
 
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BigSmellySarah

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There most certainly are compatibility issues. Bear in mind a drive has to work with the Wii hardware itself, the driver, and whatever homebrew software you want to access it. So compatibility isn't a binary question across all use cases.

Ah, that list is very helpful, thank you. There are notes next to my model that give me some things to try. When you say 2.0, are you referring to the USB cable or the drive itself? If it's something that can be replaced with a new cable that would be much easier.
 

Exidous

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Ah, that list is very helpful, thank you. There are notes next to my model that give me some things to try. When you say 2.0, are you referring to the USB cable or the drive itself? If it's something that can be replaced with a new cable that would be much easier.
The drive itself, unfortunately.
 
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