Hardware Hacking N3DSXL Unable to mount CTRNAND, Godmode9/luma payload is corrupted error, black screen with static blue light error

lordbowser85

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Hello, all! This is my first post on the site, but I've been a longtime lurker here for years. I've been having some problems regarding my hacked N3DSXL. I hacked it a few years ago, and it went off without a hitch without any problems whatsoever. However, back in January of this year, I ran into a problem. I booted my console up like normal just as I always had, but it wouldn't turn on. Instead of booting to the home menu, the power led would either flash blue briefly and turn off, or the power led light would remain static until I either turned it off by holding the power button or removing the battery. Not too long after that, the console began displaying the "Unable to mount CTRNAND or load the CTRNAND Firm" error. I was aware that my system was suffering from the common "black screen of death," so I did some researching and troubleshooting, and determined that I needed to update the system in recovery mode (R+L+A+(D-PAD)-UP). It solved the problem, and afterwards, my console worked fine just as it had before. However, this leads me to one of my current problems. Back in May, I ran into the same error as before, so I tried to update my console again via recovery mode. However, I ran into a problem. The console is able to load to the update screen, but it's always frozen, so I can't physically select the commands and complete the update. I do have the latest CTRTransfer image for my console, along with a NAND Backup, so I decided to try a CTRTransfer, which leads me to another error I've been having.

I can't attempt the transfer because of an issue regarding gm9. Whenever I hold "start" to load the luma chainloader and select gm9, it gives me the error "the payload is invalid or corrupted." I've tried different versions of gm9 and re-downloading and copying the new files to my sdcard, but it stills gives me the same error. For context, I have 3 sdcards (128gb Sandisk, 16gb Centon, and the stock 4gb Toshiba that came with my N3DSXL), and it gives the same "payload is invalid" error on all three. I made sure the folder name was spelled correctly, which it was. I also ran H2testw on all three sdcards, and the results show that test found no errors and that they all work fine. I ran it a second time to be sure, and the results were the same. I then copied the gm9.firm file to the root of my sdcard and renamed it to boot.firm to auto boot to gm9. It boots and says the RTC date and time are wrong and ask if I want to fix it. I always click yes, and two things always occur; either the bottom screen displays "Exception: Data Abort or the gm9 text will glitch (E.g. bottom screen will have cutoff text, scroll randomly, and the top screen will display qr codes and other glitches. Again, I tried all three sdcards and the results were the same. I then ran into yet another error, though I've only encountered it once, which happened to be yesterday. That error being "Processor: Arm9/Exception type: prefetch abort (svcBreak). To my knowledge, I believe that Arm9 errors are more serious than Arm11 errors, so I'm at a complete loss here. I've done a lot of researching via here, Reddit, Google, and IFixit, but none of the solutions have worked. If anyone can help me out with these issues, I'd greatly appreciate it. If all else fails, I'll try the Discord. Below is a summary of what the hardware is, what all troubleshooting methods I've attempted, and pictures/documents of the errors. I apologize in advance for all the photos. I wanted to be as thorough and concise as possible in order to receive the best results and make things easier. Thanks, everyone. Have a great day:



  • I'm not new/inexperienced when it comes to hacking. I've also hacked my Switch, Wii, and Wii U, in addition to my N3DSXL
  • Hacked N3DSXL console a few years back following the recommended guide (Plailect's)
  • Console is a USA special edition N3DSXL
  • I own three sdcards for my N3DSXL. 128gb Sandisk (main sdcard for the console), 16gb Centon (backup sdcard), and the stock 4gb Toshiba that came with my N3DSXL (backup sdcard). The 128gb sdcard has been properly formatted to FAT32 and allocated via guiformat
  • I have ran H2testw on all three sdcards twice, and both times the results on the test found no errors
  • I have the latest version of luma installed on both the sdcard and CTRNAND
  • I have the latest CTRTransfer image for my console and region
  • I have a SysNAND Backup
  • I tried updating console in recovery mode (the console loads to the update screen, but it 's always frozen, so I can't physically select the commands and complete the update)
  • Attempted to try a CTRTransfer, but whenever I try to load gm9, it always says that the payload is corrupted or invalid even with downloading different gm9 versions, trying on different sdcards, and renaming the gm9.firm file to boot.firm and placing it on root of sdcard
  • tried the battery trick
  • haven't deleted import files on console or tried to uninstall cfw
  • tried numerous troubleshooting errors via the 3ds guide website such as clearing the home menu extra data, along with trying all the steps listed for the black screen of death with a static blue light

 

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Last edited by lordbowser85,
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KleinesSinchen

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I'm afraid I can't provide anything useful here: GodMode9 crashing immediately sounds like hardware damage.
The same for "It wasn't used for some time, put away in working condition… and now does not work anymore".

Shot in the dark: Not something I would associate with peripherals. Could be NAND chip going bad (although I thought GodMode9 would work even without the NAND present at all if booted via ntrboot).
===========

Thank you for providing such a detailed description! You have ruled out pretty much all simple things.
 
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CoolMe

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The console is able to load to the update screen, but it's always frozen, so I can't physically select the commands and complete the update.
I do have the latest CTRTransfer image for my console, along with a NAND Backup, so I decided to try a CTRTransfer, which leads me to another error I've been having.
@lordbowser85 I went through the same thing with my N3DSXL, it used to freeze in the recovery mode or display an ARM11 error. And that's when it boots, which was just random, most of the time was just the static/fading blue power led, or nothing at all.
Also in GodMode9, again when the console actually boots after many attempts, it used crash in GodMode9 at random, could be just a few seconds after boot, or during a CTRTransfer, nand restore etc. It wouldn't matter, and even if it did complete the nand restore or ctrtransfer it wouldn't fix anything, because that was not the issue to begin with!

Unfortunately it's your sd card reader, you need to get new replacement. How i discovered that it was the sd card reader in my case, i accidentally applied some pressure to the sd card reader area on the back of the system with the back plate off, and it booted to the home menu. At the time, i haven't seen the home menu in quite some time - since during troubleshooting it was mostly just Arm11/Arm9 errors etc.- so when it happened, i knew something is up with the sd card reader. And the moment i stopped putting pressure on it it froze.
So i disassembled the system, put a folded square-shaped piece of paper on top of the sd card reader, assembled it together and boom it booted to the home menu! Soon after that i replaced it..
 
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KleinesSinchen

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@lordbowser85 I went through the same thing with my N3DSXL, it used to freeze in the recovery mode or display an ARM11 error. And that's when it boots, which was just random, most of the time was just the static/fading blue power led, or nothing at all.
Also in GodMode9, again when the console actually boots after many attempts, it used crash in GodMode9 at random, could be just a few seconds after boot, or during a CTRTransfer, nand restore etc. It wouldn't matter, and even if it did complete the nand restore or ctrtransfer it wouldn't fix anything, because that was not the issue to begin with!

Unfortunately it's your sd card reader, you need to get new replacement. How i discovered that it was the sd card reader in my case, i accidentally applied some pressure to the sd card reader area on the back of the system with the back plate off, and it booted to the home menu. At the time, i haven't seen the home menu in quite some time - since during troubleshooting it was mostly just Arm11/Arm9 errors etc.- so when it happened, i knew something is up with the sd card reader. And the moment i stopped putting pressure on it it froze.
So i disassembled the system, put a folded square-shaped piece of paper on top of the sd card reader, assembled it together and boom it booted to the home menu! Soon after that i replaced it..
Dang! I completely forgot about this. You mentioned it before.

Very much worth trying!!
 
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CoolMe

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Dang! I completely forgot about this. You mentioned it before.

Very much worth trying!!
Also, don't think it's a failing nand issue. In my case, i have created an Emunand on pc (before i knew the cause), i set it up properly in my sd card. The system behaved exactly the same as before with sysnand..
I used to think it was the nand and i needed to swap the mobo to fix it, even after i tried ctrtransfer type D9 and the nand test was fine.. I still wasn't convinced, because i didn't think any other component other than the nand/mobo could cause such an unfixable issue..
 
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