Hacking PS Vita IDU Mode - Everything You Need to Know

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Hello everyone,

In light of the new unofficial CEX -> IDU conversion tool by xyzz, and to help users get a better understanding of what IDU mode is all about, I have taken the liberty to write a quickstarter on all you need to know about the features it brings, what to look out for, and what you need to be careful of.


Understanding the limitations

First of all, note that IDU isn't built for everyday use on a normal Vita, for 2 reasons:
  • Even though there are temporary workarounds, the system will shut down after 5 minutes, meaning it can be extremely disruptive while occupied with the system.
  • And if you have set up update-blocking either incorrectly, or not at all, you are putting yourself at risk of an automatic update on bootup, as IDUs do not notify you that it is downloading an update in the background, nor do they display any sort of license agreements to accept beforehand.
There are also multiple reports of 'softbricks' after installing IDU mode, where users are missing every system app except Welcome Park and the Video app. This is completely normal in IDU consoles, and all you will need to do to (temporarily) switch back to CEX mode, to gain back the apps, is press and hold down L + R + D-Pad Up + Start for a total of 5 seconds. This will remove the Demo Mode watermark and will re-display all of the system apps.



Moving back to the 5-minute shutdown issue; I mentioned that there is a workaround to avoid it. However, it will involve connecting your Vita to a power source every time, and timing every step correctly.
Simply follow the below steps, in order, to disable the shutdown timer:

- Power off your Vita completely.
- Connect your Vita to a power source via the micro-USB cable; it should auto-power on.
- When you are on the home screen, perform the button sequence to get out of Demo Mode and back into temporary CEX mode.
- Now put the Vita into standby mode. Do not unplug the cable from the power source until you see that the blue/green light is completely off.
- After you have unplugged the cable, wake your Vita and you should now be temporarily free of the time limit.


As I have said a few times, this is only temporary until you reboot your Vita, where the system will automatically revert back to Demo Mode again and the shutdown timer will reset/re-activate.

That's pretty much all the limitations there is to IDU mode. I mean, personally it doesn't bother me much, but it only bothers me when I want to use my Vita elsewhere, where I can't access my micro-USB cable. I can see new methods that don't require a charger arising, but not anytime soon, as an actual developer would need to look into it.


The Official ★Package Installer Returns!

A big returning feature when your Vita is in IDU mode is the ★Package Installer app, which allows users to install DRM-free packages such as select demos, trials, and free apps; as well as game/app updates.

2016-08-19-121415.jpg




Additional IDU Settings

IDU Vitas also carry an extra set of options in the Settings app tailored especially for them. These include native X/O button swapping, and content downloading.

Settings.jpg

Below I will give a brief run-down on what each setting does, however do note that I am only explaining these options from experience, and could not find any official documentation on what some of these options' purposes actually serve:


IDUSettingsTopHalf.jpg

  • - O Button Behaviour - Pretty much self-explanatory, allows the user to either make the O Button the 'Back' button, or the 'Accept' button.
  • - Content Downloader - As far as I am aware, allows users to download update (.PUP) files via HTTP links. Serves as another method of manual updating.
  • - Sound Output Device Selection - Choose what audio device to output sound from.
  • - Wait Time to Start Video Playback - IDU Vitas can be set to play a series of video clips installed to the Vita after a certain amount of time, which may explain why the Videos app is always present in Demo Mode. You can turn off this feature though, as you see I have done in the above picture.
  • - Show PS4 Link Icon - Determines whether the PS4 Link bubble is visible on the home screen? I have never really tried this feature, but it's more-than-likely the case.
IDUSettingsBottomHalf.jpg

  • - Format Memory Card for Pre-installed Media - I think this just does the exact same job as formatting a memory card via the normal method. However, do be aware that this option DOES NOT prompt you for a confirmation! Be very careful before you choose this feature, as you may lose all data on your memory card!
  • - Cleanup Unnecessary Files (For XXXXXX) - Not too sure about this one. Although it prompts for an update file to be placed at ux0:data/PSP2/UPDATE/PSP2UPDAT.PUP before it will do anything, but I'm not taking any chances testing that.
  • - Check Memory Card (For XXXXXX) - Not sure what it really "checks" for, but I always get an "unknown folder xmc0:music/" message appear... looking at that result, it most-likely just checks for anything 'unusual' or 'out-of-order' on the memory card, but don't quote me on that.



Conclusion

IDU is a pretty neat mode on the Vita, however speaking from having it installed for about 8 hours on my own system, it's only really good for the extra little settings, Package Installer, and the ability to not get update nags when connecting to CMA on your PC. Other than that, it's just like the normal CEX mode, but with a self-shutting timer which needs to be addressed with a charger every time you turn the system on... You're better off just intermittently switching between the two modes for accessing those extra features.
Additionally, IDU doesn't really enable any privellage escalation apart from gaining the hidden IDU settings and, like I said earlier, PKG installer, but that's about it.



Thanks for taking the time to read this quickstarter, and I hope that this has made your mind up whether you would like to go ahead and install it or not. :)
 

sj33

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The potential for forced updates should really ring alarm bells. It's interesting, but I won't be touching this. Too risky.
 
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Sinthetix

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Is Browser app available in IDU mode, so that I could enable henkaku from an android server for example? In general how to reenable henkaku after vita restarted itself in demo mode?
 
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Is Browser app available in IDU mode, so that I could enable henkaku from an android server for example? In general how to reenable henkaku after vita restarted itself in demo mode?
HENkaku still works in IDU mode. Nothing changes where HENkaku is converned; just hold down L + R + Up + Start while on the home screen and your browser app should re-appear.
 
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finkmac

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Neat. A while ago, I was looking for a way to turn my Demo Vita into a standard retail Vita, but I couldn't, so I just used it as-is.
Now, I think I'll leave it on IDU for the extra fancy features :D
 

dkabot

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Am I able to install IDU mode, change my button config, and then remove IDU and still keep the configuration?
For anyone considering it for this, there's a registry edit that does the same thing without the change to IDU.
There's a VPK that automates the registry change for you; use that instead!

XYZ themself has said that the IDU tool is intended for people that already have IDUs that they want to convert to normal consoles.
The direction stated here is not intended, and you can royally screw your Vita if you don't know what you're doing (3.61 in Demo Mode, anyone?).

I know, IDU has cool features; it's got even more than anyone else on this forum can state (having one for a year makes you aware of the tiny changes).
However, unless you're 150% certain you're not a noob and already know what you intend to do and how to do it, do not try this!

If you just want to install demos, wait for the people who are crazy enough to install and dump them, then you can install them as a VPK or "pkgs" or whatever.
EDIT: We now have multiple ways to run Package Installer; both a mod of the existing one and switching it out with Dev's (I'd recommend the former). That means it's officially not necessary for that, either.
 
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Sinthetix

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Great, installed some demo games through IDU Mode, it seems that you are safe from auto update if you quickly hold down [L + R + Up + Start] at Vita's start and exit demo mode, update blocker doesn't listing anything. That way you probably can stay in IDU mode and use internet and packager without problems, anyway I'm keeping update blocker on in any case.
 

dkabot

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Great, installed some demo games through IDU Mode, it seems that you are safe from auto update if you quickly hold down [L + R + Up + Start] at Vita's start and exit demo mode, update blocker doesn't listing anything. That way you probably can stay in IDU mode and use internet and packager without problems, anyway I'm keeping update blocker on in any case.
Auto update only happens once, on boot, before you even see the livearea.
If you made it there, you already didn't get updated, and update blocker does work.

So long as you stay safe, there's no real danger, it's just that people who don't will try it and then things will go wrong.
 

laharl22

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Hello i need help for installing the package installer for me on SQLite i can only modified tblappicon with foreign keys disabled and when i enter the package installer info and reinject the app.db when i reboot on demo mode it make a rebuild database and always not the package app how to fix please?
 
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Sinthetix

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Hello i need help for installing the package installer for me on SQLite i can only modifiée tblappicon with foreign keys disabled and when i enter the package installer info and reinject the appelé.db when i reboot on demo mode it make a rebuild database and always not the package app how tout fix please?

Try to place the packager's bubble: PageId/pos on an empty place, here's my record from app.db: 5,7,vs0:app/npxs100031/sce_sys/icon0.png, ★Package Installer, 0, NULL, NPXS10031, 5, 0, 0, NULL...
So on page 5, pos 7 I have an empty space, I can place the bubble there...
 
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Deleted member 370671

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Hello i need help for installing the package installer for me on SQLite i can only modified tblappicon with foreign keys disabled and when i enter the package installer info and reinject the app.db when i reboot on demo mode it make a rebuild database and always not the package app how to fix please?
I had the same issue yesterday, and this happens when the Package Installer icon is somewhere it shouldn't be (e.g. in page 11+ or at the same place another app is). What I recommend is to replace the entry of one app you don't use so you're sure everything will work as expected.

EDIT: :ph34r:
 
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laharl22

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The package installer are now installed on my vita but how access to content manager on the app?it say me install cma and connect via USB i put my pkg to package folder of qcma
 

demounit

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I had a demo unit that I never used for years and this tool converted it to normal retail. couldn't be happier.
 

I_love_cake

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Is Browser app available in IDU mode, so that I could enable henkaku from an android server for example? In general how to reenable henkaku after vita restarted itself in demo mode?
If you put in a folder the browser and a game, you can open the folder by putting the game on the PS Vita
Sorry for my bad English:)
 
Last edited by I_love_cake,

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