TWL missing in action; read all about it: other options to try?

Discussion in '3DS - Flashcards & Custom Firmwares' started by Nepsquare, Feb 27, 2017.

  1. Nepsquare
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    Hiya,

    Disclaimer:
    To my surprise I DID NOT have an account here. Although visiting this and similar sites for years, I think I either forgot to register or I might’ve been wiped after many years of down-time. I have been in multiple console (emulation, modding and homebrew) scenes since the MS-DOS days and I kind of lost track of things. But luckily because of this my username was free to take, so here I am.

    Back on topic:
    On my 2DS, my TWL firmware is in questionable status, after “successfully” soft-modding it by following the Plailect guide. The guide is perfect, though I’m not. My current status is a a9lh/luma3d modded system on 11.3 which DOES NOT play DSi or NDS titles anymore. Card slot1 included. As you might wonder, this means that EVERY nds/dsi title, blocked/compatible or not, results in a black-screen on load.

    My original setup was a 2DS on ofw11.2, I had done the following procedure: Soundhax > Fasthax > Safehax > NAND “Backup” > 2.1.0 downgrade > created otp.bin > Browserhax > NAND restore impossible (1.3Gb NAND.bin not a 950Mb NANDmin.bin) > Upgraded to 11.3.

    How I got there:
    As I mentioned I followed the Plailect guide, but I had not read the part that my NAND backup size was wrong and also when creating the backup, I found it was weird I couldn’t use the expected NANDmin.bin name but could create NAND.bin. Still, I carried on.
    (Went back to the guide today, the backup size simply wasn't mentioned at all, it was mentioned on the forums though, I had to google it.)

    THIS is the reason I couldn’t restore my NAND with Hourglass. Because from what I have read/understood is that the actual full backup is modified by either hourglass/decrypt9(I’m not sure which at this point), hence it’s impossible to restore. It is however, the only backup I have with a fully working TWL and I have tried most things mentioned on forums which I deemed safe. I went back to the guide today

    What I have tried:
    - Installed patched TWL_FIRM to NAND.
    - Restored orignal TWL_FIRM to NAND.
    - Redirected Luma through custom path. Not knowing if this will fix anything, but it works non-the-less.
    - Using forwarders to load NDS roms. Tested also "Four Swords.cia”, all these methods result in the same.
    - Installed TWL loader, installed bootstrap.bin through nds-bootstrap loader. Release and Original have similar effects.
    - Installed NTR “CFW” successfully, but just like Luma redirection, I don’t know what this fixes, it should enable cheats and savestates though..
    - Installed Corbenik “CFW”, but can’t seem to run the firmware, but I can boot into the settings/patches part. I will take this out again. (I was only interested in this, as I was in CakesFW, because these two could redirect loading twl/gba firms by supplying the correct firm files)
    - Made a current backup of my system (NANDmin.bin) for getting back to this stage.

    What I’m willing to try:
    - Go back in time. I will tell you in future about it.
    - Rebuild TWL partition on nand with other methods I don’t know about yet.
    - Read comments, try suggestions.
    - End up bricking my console with the method below.

    What I will do if desperation takes control:
    - Try every form of sysupdater, sysdowngrader, hourglass, decrypt9, Godmode etc to restore my original 1.3Gb NAND.bin and start all over again. So far I have pondered on this idea, but bricking my nand seemed very possible, if not immediate.

    Can anyone spot my error? Most threads online cover the issue, then re-directs the person to Plailect’s guide. Surrounding the custom path setting, which I tried but haven’t seen the benefit of it yet (I did remove my arm9xloader on NAND to test).

    Does anyone have the similar status of the TWL, probably due to also having no usable backup, and managed to fix it? Or did anyone try to restore the modified NAND.bin successfully? Let me know please!

    Gr,

    Nepsquare
     
  2. V0ltr0n

    V0ltr0n GBAtemp Fan

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    If your nand backup is bad, it is gone for good. Only thing i can think of is try ctr transfer to 9.2. If it works, then system update. Someone feel free to correct me if im wrong.
     
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  3. HyperT

    HyperT GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Have you tried restoring the 1.3gb with hourglass?

    If it's 1,300,234,240 bytes then it's a valid full dump. Make another dump before flashing it if you are unsure about it.
     
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  4. Dimensional

    Dimensional GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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  5. Nepsquare
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    Nepsquare Newbie

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    I was thinking about that, but I don't think downgrading to 9.2 will fix TWL, it will just downgrade the unprotected parts of my NAND, correct? Because if I try to update from 2.1.0 (to 9.2 OR OFW) TWL stays f%cked. I will try again though, thx!

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

    I just checked, on my MAC: 1.300.234.240 bytes (1,3 GB on disk), Hourglass will accept this? I will confirm checksum again! Cheers!

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

    Thanks! I spot it now, but a bit late. I now realise my NAND backup IS proper after all. Decrypt9 just doesn't want anything to do with it. I will try Hourglass as suggested and then start over again.

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

    Thanks all for the suggestions! I will try to restore my old backup first though Hourglass. Can I actually use Hourglass to restore my 11.2ofw backup onto 11.3cfw? Or is it better to drop to 9.2 first?

    Cheers all!

    Neps
     
  6. The Real Jdbye

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    NANDmin.bin is just a trimmed NAND.bin. Other than that, they're identical.
     
  7. HyperT

    HyperT GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    There should be a .bin.sha which is used to validate the .bin - restoring straight to the 11.2 backup would be recommended.

    Decrypt9/hourglass9 should work the same, maybe the options are different - it's a full nand restore [keep a9lh] - if that's an option there.

    And make sure you're using the .bin via a9lh rather than .3dsx via hbl
     
  8. Dimensional

    Dimensional GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Restore the nand using Hourglass9 if it allows it, but be sure to select the option to keep A9LH. You must be careful and pay attention to what you select when restoring/injecting a nand backup. After that, just make sure your CFW file, most likely Luma, is up to date before you update to 11.3. Luma will keep A9LH installed, and by extension itself, so you keep CFW even when you update
     
  9. Nepsquare
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    Nepsquare Newbie

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    While using Luma's (chainloader?) to get to Hourglass, I get the following error with my NAND.bin/NAND.bin.sha:
    - NAND header not recognised. (my reaction was leaning against WTF, but I remember this error from before sadly.)

    Will try the other NAND restore options.. Dawnit, I got the right size of the backup with it's bin.sha checksum, am I missing something?
     
  10. Dimensional

    Dimensional GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Try booting without chainloading? Rename Luma's payload to something else, and then move and rename the hourglass payload to arm9loaderhax.bin in the root directory, and see what that does. All else, use the restore guide I linked to earlier.
     
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  11. Nepsquare
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    Hmmm, interesting! I thought I could only use Luma/Cor bins to boot. Makes sense if you can already hook to them at boot. Will try, thanks again!

    EDIT: Tried it with both Hourglass9 and Decrypt9, they will simply not boot unless they start AFTER Luma. Will try to chain load again, just to get them working again.
     
    Last edited by Nepsquare, Feb 27, 2017
  12. HyperT

    HyperT GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Only thing I can think is to make sure the decrypt9wip.bin/hg9.bin is the latest.

    The forced restore option just bypasses the sha check iirc - so wouldn't help.

    Could you post the decrypt9.log
     
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  13. Nepsquare
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    Could you post the decrypt9.log[/QUOTE]
    GUYS YOU ARE GREAT!!! I would've posted my log, but as Dimensional suggested, I checked his link to the guide in the meantime. Since I missed the NAND size backup in the English translation, I also missed the part below when following Phailect's guide in the help section:

    That was the only thing I needed to do, after all other CFW / patched /un-patched TWL_FIRMS / Re-dirs, this is what helped my 2ds after you guys helped me. I focussed too much on TWL_FIRM through google, and tried every option extensively, without progress. Thanks so much!! I applied these cias above with FBI on a9lh/luma on ofw11.3 and it worked straight out of the box. For the DSi Ware at least. I hope this can help others too, just know you can't bulk install this, you have too install cias manually one by one.

    I will, of course, make two full new backups! Thanks again!
     
    Last edited by Nepsquare, Feb 27, 2017
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