Non-booting switch, not sure if hardware or software after extensive tests.

Discussion in 'Switch - Console, Accessories & Hardware' started by GrimDim, Aug 16, 2019.

  1. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

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    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    UDPATE: I think @microtsip might be right, and I'm starting to lean towards a defective wifi chip :O

    None of the linux-based OS I tried have functioning wifi, but oddly enough bluetooth is working perfectly, even though the BCM4356 is a combo chip o.O
    - Lakka: no available networks
    - LineageOS: doesn't really turn on when hitting the toggle
    - L4T Ubuntu: here the OS doesn't even pretend there is any wifi, and there is no icon or setting for it (where there should be one)

    -----------------------------------------

    Hello everyone,

    I need help identifying what the problem with my switch is. At this point I'm not even sure whether it's a hardware or software fault.

    In a nutshell, my switch is stuck at boot on the switch logo, ever since it randomly froze on a white screen (with slight orangy tint) while waking it up from sleep in the dock. Note that at this point I had never used any hacking on it.

    The weird thing is, it can boot into Linux fine and all the hardware seems to work there. But I cannot boot into any CFW (well I haven't tried SX). I also tried reflashing the official OS via ChoiDuJour on PC: 8.1 to 6.1 and then 5.1, neither of which boot.

    Any help or idea is greatly appreciated! Here is detailed log of what I've done:


    Symptoms:
    - Switch is stuck on boot at switch logo.
    - Joy-Cons sync up immediately when powered on.
    - Charging via official charger works.
    - When docked the green light quickly flashes and then stays dark. No HDMI output, built-in screen remains on.
    - Screen, Joy-Cons, Touchscreen, Sound, USB-C port, SD-card reader, etc. all works.
    - Never used any third-party dock or charger, no water, no falls.


    What I've tried:
    (Basic)
    - Hard reset via power button
    - Completely discharging and recharging it
    - Entering recovery mode -> not possible, since it gets stuck on switch logo before
    - Entering safe mode -> this is actually possible but it doesn't seem to do anything (the square rotates but the progress bar stays empty for hours)

    (Hardware)
    - Opening it up and checking for shorts on some of the capacitators around the backfacing ICs. -> nothing

    (Software)
    - RCM mode, payloads, and Hekate work fine.
    - Full NAND backup/restore works.
    - CFWs do not boot, neither in SysNAND nor emuNAND. They are stuck at the same place as the OFW.
    - Linux with Retroarch works flawlessly as far as I could tell from a quick test.
    At this point I'm thinking the hardware is fine, and it's just the OS that messed itself up somehow, also affecting the CFWs since they are not independent (if I understand correctly). So
    - I flashed two different official firmware versions (6.1 and 5.1) using ChoiDuJour (PC) thinking that would fix it, but neither of them were able to get past the switch logo either.
     
    Last edited by GrimDim, Aug 19, 2019
  2. Agilato

    Agilato GBAtemp Regular

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    Jun 21, 2019
    United States
    Check it with briccmii
     
  3. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

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    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    What do you mean exactly? If I'm not mistaken, briccmii simply enables/disables AutoRCM (which I had enabled while doing the CFW stuff).
     
  4. Agilato

    Agilato GBAtemp Regular

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    Jun 21, 2019
    United States
    Also checks (and restores) proper keyblob into customer_data of said BCT, if requested.
     
  5. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

    Newcomer
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    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    Thank you for your suggestion! I tried the following, but unfortunately it still doesn't boot:
    - With the Switch in it's original non-booting state (from NAND backup I made before trying any CFW stuff), I launched briccmii and it told me (pubkey -> CORRECT, cust_data -> CORRECT). So no change there.
    - I retried flashing official fw 5.1 via ChoiDuJour (for which I enabled AutoRCM), and after installation I launched briccmii again and this time I get (pubkey -> INCORRECT, cust_data -> INCORRECT). I hit + and briccmii fixes the cust_data giving the state (pubkey -> INCORRECT, cust_data -> CORRECT). But it still doesn't boot past logo.
     
  6. microtsip

    microtsip Member

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    2
    Dec 16, 2006
    Similar issue with a friend of mine. He had it repaired and the cause was a faulty Power IC M92T36.

    — Posts automatically merged - Please don't double post! —

    May also be caused by a faulty Wifi IC. Needs to be checked by a tech first to know which one is defective.
     
  7. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

    Newcomer
    1
    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    Thanks for the tip! I hadn't looked at the wifi module before, so I inspected the caps around it and everything seems normal.
    However, I did go back into lakka and noticed I couldn't detect any wifi networks there. Same thing on LineageOS, so maybe it is the wifi chip. (bluetooth did work however in android)
     
    microtsip likes this.
  8. Retroboy

    Retroboy GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    May 28, 2015
    have you ever used emunand, ran a firmware update then removed emunand.

    if so, your fuses burn when doing a firmware update, so if you removed emunand the fuse count on your console wont match the fuse count on your nand (as its emunand you updated) and your console wont boot.
     
  9. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

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    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    No I have never done this (I hadn't done any CWF stuff on my switch before it broke).
    I only tried to boot atmosphere from emuNand once to see if I could get the switch to boot that way.

    True, but with hekate you should be able to boot anyways right, bypassing the fuse check.
     
  10. Retroboy

    Retroboy GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

    Member
    9
    May 28, 2015
    so you have installed cfw and emunand prior to your console breaking.

    if you have updated without preventing fuse burn and removed emunand or changed sd card your nand fuse wont match and wont boot.

    this is one thing i hear of loads of times, people set up emunand, then delete it not realising then get stuck because the fuse burn problem.
     
  11. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

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    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    Nono, as I said, I had *not* done any CWF/hacking before my switch broke. I only started using these tools afterwards, to diagnose the issue.
     
  12. Retroboy

    Retroboy GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

    Member
    9
    May 28, 2015
    im confused.

    your saying your console is not booting, yet how are you able to set up cfw?

    so your able to boot RCM, then cfw, yet official firmware wont boot?
     
  13. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

    Newcomer
    1
    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    So my console is not booting, neither in CFW nor OFW. The only thing that does boot is Linux, Android, etc...

    When I mentioned I tried emuNand once, that was a test (after it broke), which was not successful and did not boot either.
     
  14. Retroboy

    Retroboy GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

    Member
    9
    May 28, 2015
    i still dont get if your saying you havent modified it.

    how are you able to try cfw/emunand, android ect.

    clearly you have modified the system in order to have android and linux, you say is working?

    clearly you have done damage to the system, did you create a nand backup before messing?
     
  15. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

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    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    Sorry if I didn't express myself clearly, this timeline should clear things up:

    new clean switch -> buy & play games -> switch breaks (bootloop) -> boot rcm for 1st time -> make nand backup in hekate -> try to boot CFW: atmosphere/reinx, sysnand/emunand, nothing works -> try to boot linux: works

    So yes, I have a nand backup from before I started messing around, but it's not very useful as the switch was already not booting.
     
  16. microtsip

    microtsip Member

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    Dec 16, 2006
    Bluetooth may still work if the WiFi part is faulty. It may just encounter intermittent disconnections at times.
     
  17. Alschepmist

    Alschepmist Member

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    Aug 29, 2019
    Germany
    You can try a wifi chip reflow i had same problem and solved
     
  18. Artemis-kun

    Artemis-kun Advanced Member

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    Mar 1, 2015
    Canada
    Toronto, ON
    OP, did you have any success in solving your issue? I have run into the exact same problem with my Switch in the exact same conditions and circumstances. I haven't gone as far as to try cfw or Linux or anything like that yet, though I know my model is exploitable and I could.

    But, I think I might have some more info that might lend weight to the suspected issue. Before my Switch ended up in the same bootloop state as yours, I had been having some intermittent wifi issues; it refused to find wifi for a time and would not connect to any, but eventually it started working again until the bootloop occurred.

    One other step I can note is that if I leave it powered off for around 30 hours or so, it will power back on for a while, but as soon as I put it to sleep or power it off, it stays stuck in the bootloop.

    I sadly am not skilled with repairs of this nature, but I am going to take my Switch to a local place to does electronics repair, see if they'd be willing to check it out and see if they can replace the chip.
     
  19. GrimDim
    OP

    GrimDim Member

    Newcomer
    1
    Aug 16, 2019
    Germany
    Hi Artemis,

    I've had to leave this alone for a while but I'm looking back into it and was actually gearing up to replace the chip. Today I decided to charge up the Switch again and see if everything was as I left it. Booting into Linux, the first thing I notice is that it's detecting wifi networks now. So I try to boot into the Switch OS and behold, it's working again :O
    I'm fairly certain now that the wifi chip is indeed causing the issue. If it ever pops up again, I will reflow and/or replace the chip then.

    My situation, especially now, does sound quite similar to what you describe! There is of course a small chance that your wifi troubles are independent of the rest, since the bootloop can have multiple causes.
    Did you end up bringing it into a shop?
     
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