Hacking Homebrew app Strange issues with USB detection using Loader GX

MaxBox

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Hey all!

I started modding my Wii for the first time today, and have been running into some weird behavior with Homebrew & GX detecting my flashdrive. Initially, I had both my apps and games on my flash drive, though later saw that you should have your apps and such on an SD card and the games on the USB device.

Firstly, everywhere I read recommends the USB port closest to side of the Wii. When I use this USB port, though, Homebrew didn't detect any apps. Apps on the drive will only be listed if I use the USB port closer to the center. Doing this, I was eventually able to install GX and get it open, where it initially saw the USB drive with no apparent issue. When I tried launching my game (which was listed with no art) (Rhythm Heaven Fever), I got booted back to the Wii main menu. I looked into it and saw that I might require some necessary cIOS files, and tried using d2x to install them (249,250,251). Each time I did, though, d2x had trouble making a connection and kept giving me failure errors for downloading.

Fast forward a bit through that and I ended up following ModMii, installing BootMii, making a NAND backup, installing Priiloader, and installing the 42 included WAD files that ModMii generated. After this, however, opening Loader GX still results in no USB detection.

At this point I now have my apps folder on my SD card and my wbfs folder on my flash drive, though still Loader GX doesn't detect the USB flashdrive on either USB port on the Wii.

Upon discovering how poor USB flashdrives actually perform for this, I've ordered a Bipra 320GB USB 2.0 external HDD. That exact size wasn't on the compatibility chart, but the 200GB model was listed with full green. Should I just wait for the drive and give up on trying to make the flash drive work? The flash drive was initially detected and could see the game file, so a part of me feels like there must be something I can do. Thanks!

Other info in case I'm missing something else:
Current IOS: 58 v6176.
USB Loader GX: 3.0 r1272

SysCheck HDE v2.4.0 HacksDen Edition by JoostinOnline, Double_A, R2-D2199, and Nano
...runs on IOS58 (rev 6176).
Region: NTSC-U
System Menu 4.3U (v513)
Priiloader installed
Drive date: 07.14.2008
Homebrew Channel 1.1.2 running on IOS58
Hollywood v0x11
Console ID: 86923237
Console Type: Wii
Shop Channel Country: United States (49)
Boot2 v4
Found 90 titles.
Found 48 IOS on this console. 7 of them are stubs.
IOS3 (rev 65280): Stub
IOS4 (rev 65280): Stub
IOS9 (rev 1034): No Patches
IOS10 (rev 768): Stub
IOS11[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS12 (rev 526): No Patches
IOS13 (rev 1032): No Patches
IOS14 (rev 1032): No Patches
IOS15 (rev 1032): No Patches
IOS16 (rev 512): Stub
IOS17 (rev 1032): No Patches
IOS20[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS21 (rev 1039): No Patches
IOS22 (rev 1294): No Patches
IOS28 (rev 1807): No Patches
IOS30[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS31 (rev 3608): No Patches
IOS33 (rev 3608): No Patches
IOS34 (rev 3608): No Patches
IOS35 (rev 3608): No Patches
IOS36 (rev 3608): No Patches
IOS37 (rev 5663): No Patches
IOS38 (rev 4124): No Patches
IOS40[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS41 (rev 3607): No Patches
IOS43 (rev 3607): No Patches
IOS45 (rev 3607): No Patches
IOS46 (rev 3607): No Patches
IOS48 (rev 4124): No Patches
IOS50[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS51 (rev 4864): Stub
IOS52[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS53 (rev 5663): No Patches
IOS55 (rev 5663): No Patches
IOS56 (rev 5662): No Patches
IOS57 (rev 5919): No Patches
IOS58 (rev 6176): USB 2.0
IOS60 (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS61 (rev 5662): No Patches
IOS62 (rev 6430): No Patches
IOS70[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS80[60] (rev 65535, Info: ModMii-IOS60-v6174): Trucha Bug, NAND Access
IOS222 (rev 65280): Stub
IOS223 (rev 65280): Stub
IOS249[57] (rev 65535, Info: d2x-v10beta52): Trucha Bug, NAND Access, USB 2.0
IOS250[56] (rev 65535, Info: d2x-v10beta52): Trucha Bug, NAND Access, USB 2.0
IOS251[38] (rev 65535, Info: d2x-v10beta52): Trucha Bug, ES Identify, NAND Access
IOS254 (rev 65281): BootMii
BC v6
MIOS v10
Report generated on 08/18/2021.
 

XFlak

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Flash drive compatibility improves if you format it as wbfs, but then it can only hold wii games and u lose many of the other benefits of fat32.

I think gx has an option to use the other usb port. It may require d2x v10 beta 53 though iirc, and installing this may have unintended consequences.

Probably best to wait for your new drive, but if u want to test something in the meantime you can try wbfs, port1 instead of 0, and d2x v10 beta 53. Just be prepared to roll back the changes if things don't improve, especially the cios
 

MaxBox

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The drive arrived today, and my computer saw it just fine. I formatted it to Fat32 then copy/pasted the flash drive to the HDD, still with just the single game.

There's some new strange behavior now. The HDD came with a mini usb to two USB A cable, so first I tried a single USB plugged in to the incorrect slot near the middle of the Wii. When entering Homebrew, no apps were listed. Pressing 1 showed me that it did see the SD card and the USB drive. I unplugged/replugged the SD card and still no apps appeared. Apps only showed up when I disconnected the HDD, though they stayed showing when I plugged the HDD back in.

From there, I launched Loader GX which still doesn't detect the HDD. I shut down and swapped the USB port to the correct one near the edge of the Wii. When I got back to the Homebrew menu, my apps were listed, though Loader GX still doesn't detect it. I also tried plugging in the other cable so that both USB ports were occupied, but no change.

I also tried downloading WiiFlow 4.2.1 and the most recent community revision. This app did detect the drive and game on it, though when I launched the game I got a brief WiiFlow loading screen followed by about 20 seconds of a black screen, before the Wii seemingly restarted and put me at the start "press A" screen.

I do have Priiloader which normally restarts me on the Homebrew app, so I was surprised to see the vanilla boot screen.
 

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If the drive came with a Y cable, it probably needs to draw power from 2 USB ports. Plug both of them into the Wii, and if it doesn't detect the drive, try switching them. One of them probably provides power+data, and the other just additional power. You want to make sure the power+data line is plugged into port0. This is usually the thicker one, but in any case just try both and hopefully one configuration should work for u.
 
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MaxBox

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Well, via the computer it worked with only the "primary" plug.

Here are the steps that I tried this morning, I'm a little unsure where to go from here. Should I tag the lead dev of Loader GX?
Starting from shutdown (red LED), both USBs plugged in with the primary (thicker/main) cable in port0 (closer to edge of Wii). Priiloader loads homebrew menu, apps appear, homebrew doesn't detect the USB device in the (1) menu. HDD status LED is off. Loader GX launched, no drive detected. Back to Homebrew menu, USB still not detected by HB. WiiFlow is launched, both the drive and game are detected. The game's channel splash art/music displays and plays. Hitting play gives a brief loading screen, then ~15 seconds of a black screen, before returning me to the vanilla Wii startup prompt.

Shutdown, USB plug positions flipped, with the primary now in port1. Homebrew loads, no apps displayed. Wifi icon flashing. (1) menu shows that Homebrew detects both an SD card and USB device, but switching the device to SD card does nothing. No apps displayed unless I disconnect the HDD. Reconnecting the HDD results in the same behavior with Loader GX and WiiFlow as port0.

Is there a cIOS that I'm missing? Could there be an actual hardware issue? I feel like I'm right near the finish line, but can't figure out the final key.
 

CoolMe

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Weird... Does your Y cable and HDD enclosure work fine on PC? And do you hear the HDD powering up when you boot the system?
 
Last edited by CoolMe,

MaxBox

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Weird... Does your Y cable and HDD enclosure work fine on PC? And do you hear the HDD powering up when you boot the system?

Yes, the external HDD works perfectly when connected to my PC via a single USB port of the Y cable.

With the primary cable in port0, I don't see the HDD's LED powering up when turning on the Wii, both from shutdown and standby. Homebrew doesn't detect a USB device, neither does GX, though WiiFlow sees the drive and the game on it.
With the primary cable in port1, the HDD's LED powers up when turning on the Wii. Homebrew doesn't display apps in this orientation but does detect the USB device.
 

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It could be an incompatible drive... with effort and trial and error you may be able to find a configuration that works. You can try different cios versions\bases to see if one makes a difference, and/or try formatting/partitioning the drive as wbfs or wbfs+fat32 (even though generally 100% fat32 is the ideal/recommended set up)
 
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MaxBox

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When you say "find a configuration", are different cios versions the only thing left for me to be tinkering with? I'll also try formatting as wbfs (which doesn't require the wbfs manager, I hope?).

If I was to try the two partitions, on which partitions am I putting the files?

Can you point me in the direction of a relatively cheap drive that's verified as working? I saw the same brand in a different capacity so I figured I was okay. Should I maybe steer more towards an actual external enclosure and drive rather than mine?

I appreciate the support so far, I figure we can get this working at least eventually.

--------------------- MERGED --------------------------- <--- I couldn't post the link until five posts, dummy

Here's a direct link to what I purchased: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004LGM9XU
 
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XFlak

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Different cios versions and/or hdd formats are the main things you could try. Different versions of usbloaders could also have an impact but much less likely than the other 2.

You can format your hdd as wbfs using wii backup manager for windows.

If u need help partitioning the drive, use Modmii's usb loader setup wizard, there's an option to have it partitioned as fat32+ntfs if I recall correctly. Follow that, but as a final step, format the 2nd ntfs partition as wbfs using wii backup manager. Wbfs partitions can ONLY store wii games. It won't even be recognized by windows, it will prompt you to format the drive, say NO! You will be able to view the contents of wbfs partitions on windows only using tools like wii backup manager.

In regards to compatible hard drives, I have had a lot of luck with seagate and western digital drives. If you can find one that offers usb2 and not usb3 even better (save a couple bucks, not a lot of point in paying for usb3 speeds when the wii only supports usb2)
 
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MaxBox

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Well, I started by formatting the drive via Wii Backup Manager and transferred a WBFS file, then synced the cover and such. Loader GX still doesn't see the drive whatsoever, WiiFlow saw the drive and cover, it performed the same as previously, except this time it got to the vanilla Wii start screen then completely froze, not letting any controllers connect and forcing me to hold the power button to shut down.

Starting to think this may be an issue with the drive itself, I guess. I don't know how to pick random cIOS versions either, and would be worried I'd potentially be making a problem worse.

As for looking for a new drive, I barely see any on amazon that are only 2.0. The lower capacity and cost drives are all from bipra (the brand I have now) and other generic nonames. Should I instead aim for an enclosure and pick up a drive separately?
 
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omerfarooq

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hey, i am new to this site and i dont know which is the proper thread for my question. my flash drive (fat32) works perfect with the usb loader gx. and now i want to use my seagate 2tb external hardive(thegreen one). i started by formatting it to nfts defaul allocation and then from wii backup manager formatted it again to be sure. i transferred games like i usually do from the sofatware. when i start usb loader gx on my wii. it prompts with this , select a partition or format. i am stuck at this point as i dont know what to do. if i click the option select on wii it shows 4 partitions with partition 1 only readable with 2080 something gb, the rest parititons are not reabale i selected the first one and it showed no games,(tired dropping the same game directly and what not. then i though of formatting the harddrive on wii in usbloader gx. messed it up too and now it shows 127.8 gb of free space with no games.(i again copied the games and still it said no games and same 127 gb of free space (original 2tb harddrive) i am sorry , i am a bit noob when it comes to computer thing like disc parititons and all. so please if anyone can help me on this. i am currently experimenting with a single game wii sport resort whihc works perfectly through my flash drive.
 

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Right-click "This PC", select "manage", then on the left panel click "Disk Management", then in the bottom\middle portion of the window, scroll down and find your hard drive. It should be a single partition, if you see multiple partitions, right click each and select delete (careful to backup your data first, and careful not to accidentally delete something from a different drive!). Then right click the unallocated space and create a new NTFS partition using the maximum size (default). When this is done, you want to use fat32 gui formatter (http://ridgecrop.co.uk/index.htm?guiformat.htm) to reformat the drive from NTFS to FAT32 (Wii backup Manager can also format drives to FAT32 if you prefer this tool).
 
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omerfarooq

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Hey thankyou so much for the reply man. I think i have done this too .created a simple volume and all the formating and stuff and was again prompted on usb loader gx with the same select or format. When i select it still comes back as empty.
 

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MaxBox

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Are there specific cIOS I should be trying? I've yet to get a new hard drive yet but at this point I'm feeling very lost.
 

MaxBox

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Alright, I'll try that. As for a new drive, any USB 2.0 enclosure is actually more expensive than 3.0 as far as I can find. No one's making 2.0 stuff anymore, I would think. I have a spare SSD that I guess I could also try with an enclosure.
 

CoolMe

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Alright, I'll try that. As for a new drive, any USB 2.0 enclosure is actually more expensive than 3.0 as far as I can find. No one's making 2.0 stuff anymore, I would think. I have a spare SSD that I guess I could also try with an enclosure.
USB3.0 should work, you just don't get any speed benefits and it'll be treated as a usb2.0 instead.
 
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MaxBox

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USB3.0 should work, you just don't get any speed benefits and it'll be treated as a usb2.0 instead.

Oh sweet, I swear I read on some thread during my searching that 3.0 had a chance to introduce some issues and such. That makes things much easier lol.
 
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