nds-bootstrap loader: Run commercial NDS backups from an SD Card

nds-bootstrap:

Thanks to the work of ahezard, Gericom, Apache, Robz8, _catcatcat, and shutterbug2000 and other contributors, we can now load NDS games from the SD card, without any flashcard/SLOT-1 card.

Don't expect high compatibility, but do expect many, many updates.

:arrow: Compatibility listing:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1LRTkXOUXraTMjg1eedz_f7b5jiuyMv2x6e_jY_nyHSc/edit#gid=0

:arrow: The official Discord server for nds-bootstrap:
https://discordapp.com/invite/7bxTQfZ

:arrow: The thread for the recommended loader (by Robz8):
https://gbatemp.net/threads/twloader-ctr-mode-nds-app.448375/

:arrow: SRLoader for softmodded DSis (by Robz8):
https://gbatemp.net/threads/srloader-nds-app-for-dsi.472200/

:arrow: If you're more of a forwarder person:
https://gbatemp.net/threads/nds-forwarder-cias-for-your-home-menu.426174/

:arrow: Link to the releases page:
https://github.com/ahezard/nds-bootstrap/releases

:arrow: Anti-Piracy patch list by Robz8
https://gbatemp.net/threads/ap-patch-preservation.477536/

Also, thank you to our testers:
Historian
JoshuaDoes
thejsa
Alerdy
PokeAcer


Also, a video thanks to Robz8:

And another thanks to Alerdy:
 
Last edited by shutterbug2000,

BessieBess

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Actually, that's the correct ID.

Did you get a message about Anti-Piracy, when launching the game?
Either way, I don't know why the patching won't work.
I did! I made sure both nds bootstrap and twilightmenu++ were fully updated

Edit: if anyone was wondering about the conclusion to my thrilling saga: I patched it manually myself and it works just fine now! Hooray!!! Thank you for your quick responses. They were much appreciated :3
 
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Olivil

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I am trying to run some homebrew (Castle Wars DS 0.9) that is crashing on the title screen. I have tried running it in DS mode with no success... Is there anything else I can try to make it run? The game is not in the nds-bootstrap homebrew compatibility list.

I am using a DSi XL with the latest Twilight/nds-bootstrap. The game works fine on my flashcart.
 

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I am trying to run some homebrew (Castle Wars DS 0.9) that is crashing on the title screen. I have tried running it in DS mode with no success... Is there anything else I can try to make it run? The game is not in the nds-bootstrap homebrew compatibility list.

I am using a DSi XL with the latest Twilight/nds-bootstrap. The game works fine on my flashcart.
If you already tried with direct boot turned off, then you'll have to run it on a flashcard for now.
 

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I am trying to run some homebrew (Castle Wars DS 0.9) that is crashing on the title screen. I have tried running it in DS mode with no success... Is there anything else I can try to make it run? The game is not in the nds-bootstrap homebrew compatibility list.

I am using a DSi XL with the latest Twilight/nds-bootstrap. The game works fine on my flashcart.
Use a RAM disk and run the game in DS Mode
I played it, had no idea what to do at first, and didn't realize that reaching 100 would also lead to victory... I was at 97 :cry:
 

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v0.46.3

Included in TWiLight Menu++ v21.5.0

Improvement
  • (@Pk11 and various) Updated in-game menu translations.
Bug fixes
  • (@Pk11) Fixed freezing when taking screenshots in G5 Pokémon.
  • (@Pk11) Slot-1 is now enabled for Pokémon Typing DS.
  • Fixed sound not playing correctly in Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, while running in DSiWarehax or forced DSi mode.
Known bug
  • Saving currently doesn't work in Pokémon Typing DS.
 

RocketRobz

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v0.47.0


The above screenshots are taken straight from real hardware, without a capture card or an emulator!​

Included in TWiLight Menu++ v21.5.1

What's new?
  • You can now access the in-game menu, while running DSi-Enhanced/Exclusive games in DSi mode!
    • Take screenshots, alongside changing the clock speed and VRAM boost settings to their DS versions.
Bug fixes
  • The patch offset cache from the previous nds-bootstrap version for each launched ROM should now be properly cleared without having to manually delete the `patchOffsetCache` folder in `sd:/_nds/nds-bootstrap/`.
  • Fixed an overlooked bug that broke some homebrew compatibility.
 
Last edited by RocketRobz,

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I have a separate thread about this but was recommended by one of the people there to post about it on an official thread as well, so here goes.
Long story short: i get terrible slowdown while playing Sonic Rush through nds-bootstrap but it runs perfectly fine from a real cartridge.

- new 2DS xl, Luma 3DS, everything up to date.
- I'm running everything from an SD card, don't own a flashcart. Also, the SD card read speed is ~35mb/s.
- The only other game with this problem i've found so far is Sonic Rush Adventure, so it could have something to do with that specific engine.
- Og Rush only lags on NTR speed, but is very unstable on TWL speed, so i'm stuck with NTR. Clock speed seems to have no impact on Rush Adventure.
- Someone on my thread tried running the game also through nds-bootstrap and had no issues.
- I could only find one other instance of someone mentioning this issue.
- [og Rush] The game lags consistently in specific parts of each stage, most likely trying to load the next section of the stage.
- [og Rush] The game lags often throughout bossfights, which take place on small static arenas and are mechanically repetitive, so that part doesn't seem to be loading related.
- [Rush Adventure] This one seems to only lag during the intro sequence, consistantly when cutting to Tails and Marine on dolphins, you can see footage of that here.
- Reinstalling nds-bootstrap and TWL menu (and again, both are up to date).
- Reformatting the SD card with different allocation sizes.
- Trying different ROMs, from different regions.
- Messing with every concievable setting in TWL and Luma.
 

RocketRobz

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I have a separate thread about this but was recommended by one of the people there to post about it on an official thread as well, so here goes.
Long story short: i get terrible slowdown while playing Sonic Rush through nds-bootstrap but it runs perfectly fine from a real cartridge.

- new 2DS xl, Luma 3DS, everything up to date.
- I'm running everything from an SD card, don't own a flashcart. Also, the SD card read speed is ~35mb/s.
- The only other game with this problem i've found so far is Sonic Rush Adventure, so it could have something to do with that specific engine.
- Og Rush only lags on NTR speed, but is very unstable on TWL speed, so i'm stuck with NTR. Clock speed seems to have no impact on Rush Adventure.
- Someone on my thread tried running the game also through nds-bootstrap and had no issues.
- I could only find one other instance of someone mentioning this issue.
- [og Rush] The game lags consistently in specific parts of each stage, most likely trying to load the next section of the stage.
- [og Rush] The game lags often throughout bossfights, which take place on small static arenas and are mechanically repetitive, so that part doesn't seem to be loading related.
- [Rush Adventure] This one seems to only lag during the intro sequence, consistantly when cutting to Tails and Marine on dolphins, you can see footage of that here.
- Reinstalling nds-bootstrap and TWL menu (and again, both are up to date).
- Reformatting the SD card with different allocation sizes.
- Trying different ROMs, from different regions.
- Messing with every concievable setting in TWL and Luma.
The slowdown will be fixed in the next nds-bootstrap version.
 
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RocketRobz

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v0.48.0

Included in TWiLight Menu++ v22.0.0

NOTE: The .ini settings listed below can be set using TWiLight Menu++, if installed.

What's new?
  • When starting a DSi-Enhanced game in DSi mode in DSiWarehax, a DSi-Exclusive/DSiWare title set as a donor ROM (.ini setting: DONOR_TWLONLY_PATH) will now be used in order for the game to boot!
  • When starting a DSi-Exclusive/DSiWare game from a CycloDS iEvolution running in DSi mode, a DSi-Enhanced game set as a donor ROM (.ini setting: DONOR_TWL_PATH) will now be used in order for the game to boot!
    • Please note that DSiWare will run the same as when support for it first got added in nds-bootstrap, so saving will not work, except in the DSiWare version of Advance Wars: Days of Ruin.
  • DSiWare now boots in DSiWarehax (without Unlaunch, in other words)!
    • If using Memory Pit, some titles may not work or will crash later on. The TWLMenu++ version listed above contains a list of incompatible DSiWare for Memory Pit, and will prevent launching, if incompatible title is found.
    • WiFi will not work with Memory Pit as well.
  • A new MPU configuration is now in use for DS mode, and is the same one used in DSi mode!
  • SWI Halt hooking can now be disabled! (.ini setting: SWI_HALT_HOOK).
    • Disabling will fix slowdown that occur in some games, such as Mario Kart DS, Sonic Rush, and more.
  • If a ROM gets pre-loaded to RAM, the unpatched ARM9 and ARM7 binaries will now be placed in the DS debug RAM area, in order for more of the ROM data to be loaded.
  • The in-game menu is now accessible in B4DS mode!
  • When booting a game in DSi mode from a CycloDS iEvolution, the TWLCFG is reconstructed, as the flashcard clears it from RAM when it's menu opens.
Improvements
  • 3DS/2DS: For SDK1-4 games, the last 24MB of RAM is now used again for card data cache.
  • (@Pk11 and various) Updated in-game menu translations.
  • Other minor improvements.
Bug fixes
  • The RTC glitches that occur on DSi are finally fixed!
    • No need to hear the bell over and over in Animal Crossing: Wild World!
    • Face Training can now be played properly.
    • The quick day/night swap and the crashes will no longer occur in the Gen 4 Pokémon games!
  • (@Pk11) Fixed bugged pixels appearing in DSi mode screenshots.
  • Fixed some DSi mode games not running from a flashcard on 3DS.
  • Forced DSi mode now works again!
  • Fixed broken sound in some games running in DSiWarehax or forced DSi mode.
  • Fixed SDK5 games loaded into RAM rebooting the console when trying to open in-game menu.
  • Fixed flashcard games running in DSi mode rebooting the console when trying to open in-game menu.
  • Fixed games not starting if EZ-Flash 3-in-1 is inserted.
  • Other minor fixes.
Known bugs
  • Due to the new MPU configuration, a few SDK2 games may not work. The few that didn't work such as Trauma Center: Under the Knife and Lost in Blue have already been fixed.
  • The B4DS in-game menu will not work in some games.
 

RocketRobz

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Are there any downsides for disabling SWI Halt hooking?
Disabling it fixes slowdowns in The World Ends With You.
The only known downside is that it breaks a few games that rely on card read DMA, such as Army Men: Soldiers of Misfortune.
As I imagine not many people play said game though, it's why SWI Halt hook isn't in the per-game settings menu.
 

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v0.49.0

Included in TWiLight Menu++ v22.1.0

What's new?
  • Another DSiWare title, Glory Days: Tactical Defense (from the devs who made Pop Island and Pop Island: Paperfield), is now playable on original/lite DS models!
    • To play it, a DSi-Enhanced ROM needs to be set as a Donor ROM.
Improvements
  • Replaced CycloDSi check with an arm7 MBK check, should there be any more future DSi mode flashcards.
  • (@Pk11 and various) Updated in-game menu translations.
Bug fixes
  • Fixed DSi mode WiFi only working on regular DSi models, if using a DSiWare exploit containing MiniTWLPayload (ex. Memory Pit, Flipnote Lenny), or a CycloDS iEvolution flashcard, so DSi mode WiFi will now work on all DSi and 3DS models!
    • (In case you're wondering, this does not make DSi mode WiFi work in original DS/NTR games.)
  • The sprite glitch + crash bug should now be fixed in Pokémon HeartGold & SoulSilver Versions!
  • Fixed WarioWare DIY not booting on 3DS in DS mode.
  • Fixed AP-patching not working properly for ROMs pre-loaded into RAM.
  • (Untested!) Fixed soft-resetting for forwarders in hiyaCFW.
  • Fixed nds-bootstrap logo always showing in B4DS mode, if the patch offsets for set ROM are already cached.
Known bug
  • In Glory Days: Tactical Defense on DS/DS lite (B4DS mode), sleep mode will cause the game to crash.
 
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Homebrew DLDI compatibility is pretty good with the boostrap loader, but there's actually some games that worked with the older 0.5.1b version that haven't worked in any version since then. Notably Tetris The Grand Master, but I've encountered several. They just act as if they can't access FAT.

I can still use the old hb-menu with bootstrap v0.5.1b to load these games, but I'd really like to be able to make forwarders for them.

For some reason even renaming v0.5.1b of the bootstrap to 'nds-bootstrap-hb-release.nds' still doesn't work with forwarders. I'm not sure why, but it just gives black screens when trying load a homebrew.

Any chance of seeing improved DLDI support in the homebrew version to support these games that used to work?
 
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RocketRobz

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Homebrew DLDI compatibility is pretty good with the boostrap loader, but there's actually some games that worked with the older 0.5.1b version that haven't worked in any version since then. Notably Tetris The Grand Master, but I've encountered several. They just act as if they can't access FAT.

I can still use the old hb-menu with bootstrap v0.5.1b to load these games, but I'd really like to be able to make forwarders for them.

For some reason even renaming v0.5.1b of the bootstrap to 'nds-bootstrap-hb-release.nds' still doesn't work with forwarders. I'm not sure why, but it just gives black screens when trying load a homebrew.

Any chance of seeing improved DLDI support in the homebrew version to support these games that used to work?
Hmm, are you sure those homebrew have stopped working in v0.6.0?
I see no difference in the code related to homebrew loading.
 
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Sweater Fish Del

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Releases 0.6.0 through 0.14.1 didn't include binaries for homebrew support. They all just say to see release 0.5.1b.

Homebrew support was included again with 0.15.0 and that was when some games stopped working. Another game that used to work, but no longer does is DSAllStars.
 

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Releases 0.6.0 through 0.14.1 didn't include binaries for homebrew support. They all just say to see release 0.5.1b.

Homebrew support was included again with 0.15.0 and that was when some games stopped working. Another game that used to work, but no longer does is DSAllStars.
Unfortunately, the homebrew loading code was in a different branch then, and later got removed, so I'm unable to see what could've broke support for some homebrew, although I remember fixing it later on.
If there's a fix for the others though, then it's probably a simple one, and I don't know about it yet.
 
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Pk11

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Unfortunately, the homebrew loading code was in a different branch then, and later got removed, so I'm unable to see what could've broke support for some homebrew, although I remember fixing it later on.
If there's a fix for the others though, then it's probably a simple one, and I don't know about it yet.
Some old forks still have the hb branch, such as this one: https://github.com/Iam2smart/nds-bootstrap/tree/hb
 
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