Hacking vWii USB Loader GX doesn't show games

Gruphius

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@Cyan I've read multiple times that you're the guy to help people out with problems like this (anyone else reading this can, of course, help too; any help is appreciated):

So basically after I set everything up I installed a few backups of some of my games I made on my family's Wii a while ago via the Wii Backup Manager and started my Wii U, went into the vWii and wanted to test if everything ran, but the games didn't show up. At this point I already ran through a ton of troubleshooting due to other issues before that, mainly USB Loader GX not starting, not detecting the stick, hardcrashes everytime I started a title from USB Loader GX, etc. And at this point everything worked. The stick was detected and working and I was able to start software (at least the software that showed up, so only the software installed on the nand). Or at least I thought so until I realized that no games installed on the stick showed up. I started troubleshooting again and one of the things I tried was installing a game from a disc to the USB. It worked, but got stuck at 30% and softlocked my console as I was unable to cancel the operation (the button simply didn't work) and I was unable to restart the console (besides the hard shutdown when pressing the power button for longer than 4 seconds). Then I went back into USB Loader GX, tried to install the game from the disc again, but USB Loader GX said the game was already installed, despite not showing it. Then I deleted the game from the USB, installed it from a older backup via Wii Backup Manager, put the USB back and tried installing the game again. Again the game didn't show up, but the loader said it was already installed.

I might also have to add a few things. I can play games from disc totally fine, I'm using a HDD for the Wii U (which is my only external HDD, so I'm not able to use another HDD for the vWii), I'm running USB Loader GX on my family's old Wii with a stick too and without any issues and I'm using a micro SD with a adapter as USB stick, since it's my only external drive which is bigger than 32 GB (besides the HDD and another stick, which is used for backup on my PC).

Yeah, this might be the stupidest setup you've ever heard of and I am totally sorry that I'm abusing USB Loader GX in that way, but since I really don't have much money I don't really have a choice but to find creative ways of solving problems with the stuff I have at hand.
I hope you can help my anyways and thanks in advance!
 

Cyan

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hello,

It can be a lot of things, from hardware to incorrect settings.
Seing you can launch the install process, and it tells you it's already present makes me feel like a setting problem, like the game is there, but you didn't set the display options properly.
Or because it contains a partial incomplete file, so it says the file exists, but it can't be read/open/displayed. you should either delete it (faster!) or verify the ISO with wiiBackupManager (you should do that anyway)

freezing at 30% is because of flashdrive !
flashdrives work correctly only in read mode. (when it works. sometime it doesn't even work in read mode!)
If you write anything, it'll freeze !
Just don't install disc to USB, don't download covers, don't download cheatcode, and beware using nintendont because when it'll create or save to the memory card when exiting a game, it can freeze too, and corrupt your entire FAT table ! you'll lose all your data on that partition !

Hardware:
- First, what godreborn said is true. You should avoir USB sticks completely on Wii.
Unless you format it to WBFS partition, it won't work correctly and will (at best) randomly freeze or (at worst) not be detected.
Of course, formatted as WBFS it will only be used for Wii games, no emulators or nintendont, but using the flashdrive with them would end in corrupted partition anyway, so why would you want that ?

- Second, still on hardware, the slot you use has its importance depending the IOS you use at the time you access the drive !
If you use IOS58, it will look at the USB port in different order than if you use cIOS, and if you use cIOS it will look only at ONE at a time, maybe the wrong one ! NEVER enable "dual port" option if you don't use or need it or understand its consequences.

To be safe, always plug on USB Port 0 (the one near the bottom on Wii, or at the back-top on WiiU)


- if you use a mixed SD/USB, be sure you have the settings only on SD !
Don't put USBLoaderGX dol file on USB ! never. it'll prevent you going insane. If you don't have an SD, buy one.

If you plug multiple vWii compatible USB drives at the same time.... just don't.
(not counting the WiiU formatted drive, this one is skipped automatically by the loader)

- stick shouldn't require more power, but if it's a real HDD, remember that you need a Y-cable, or an externally powered drive.


Software:
If the loader can't see the game, there are lot of possibilities too : the way you install the game (path, filename, format), but mostly your settings.

the used IOS or cIOS and the way you launch the loader (hbc, priiloader, channel, etc.), you might have AHB access disabled (though it shouldn't affect usb file listing, but better safe than sorry. one proper setup mean less possible cause to debug)

if you enabled "favorite" but didn't add any games to your favorite list, you won't see any game !

If you enabled parental control, but the game is higher level and is not suitable for the chosen age (or the default if you didn't choose any), it won't display either !

If you enabled any "category filtering" and either didn't set a category to the game, selected one wrongly (there are different positions!), or display one that is not part of the game you want, it won't display too.

If your device has multiple partition (even hidden ones), and you selected to display the one where you don't have games.... well... you know the result too :P




what I recommend for a fast fix (not detailed one in expectation of finding the exact problem):
1- don't use flashdrive
2- use WiiBackupManager and follow this guide to "fix" the path&folder&filename automatically to match what the loader expect.
3- reset the settings completely (settings > reset), or delete everything from
https://gbatemp.net/posts/7592791


If you insist on using flashdrive :
1- do NOT install games using the Wii. Write mode will freeze ! (and can corrupt your partition)
2- always use Wii Backup Manager to install an ISO to the drive using the guide above. using a PC, it works fine in write mode. Yeah, I know, you can't dump your game on PC and you need to "find it" elsewhere.
3- you might want to consider using WBFS partition format instead of FAT32 or NTFS. in WBFS, you can dump disc to USB using the loader, or use WiiBackupManager (nothing different there).
 
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Gruphius

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Your issue is using a flash drive.
Well, after some more research I get the feeling that that is a bigger problem than I thought...

Unless you format it to WBFS partition, it won't work correctly and will (at best) randomly freeze or (at worst) not be detected.
Of course, formatted as WBFS it will only be used for Wii games, no emulators or nintendont, but using the flashdrive with them would end in corrupted partition anyway, so why would you want that ?
Since my Wii drive (which works fine on my Wii) is WBFS, while my vWii drive (which has issues on the vWii) is NTFS that could be the problem. I'm testing that right now.

Second, still on hardware, the slot you use has its importance depending the IOS you use at the time you access the drive !
If you use IOS58, it will look at the USB port in different order than if you use cIOS, and if you use cIOS it will look only at ONE at a time, maybe the wrong one ! NEVER enable "dual port" option if you don't use or need it or understand its consequences.
I don't have dual port enabled and I'm using the IOS58, since the cIOS didn't even detect my drive and came back with "waiting for HDD" everytime I started the loader.

To be safe, always plug on USB Port 0 (the one near the bottom on Wii, or at the back-top on WiiU)
The one on the top on the Wii U? That's interesting since I have to use the bottom one, since everytime I put it in the top one it comes back with "waiting for HDD". Are you sure the top one is USB 0? Or is that because of the IOS?

if you use a mixed SD/USB, be sure you have the settings only on SD !
Don't put USBLoaderGX dol file on USB ! never. it'll prevent you going insane. If you don't have an SD, buy one.
I have both, SDHC and USB. USB Loader GX is installed on the SD and uses the SD for its files.

If you plug multiple vWii compatible USB drives at the same time.... just don't.
I wasn't planning on doing so, but good to know.

(not counting the WiiU formatted drive, this one is skipped automatically by the loader)
Okay, that's good to know, thanks. That's one less thing to worry about while trying to fix the issue.

stick shouldn't require more power, but if it's a real HDD, remember that you need a Y-cable, or an externally powered drive.
I'm using a Y-cable on my HDD, but that's only for the Wii U.

the used IOS or cIOS and the way you launch the loader (hbc, priiloader, channel, etc.), you might have AHB access disabled (though it shouldn't affect usb file listing, but better safe than sorry. one proper setup mean less possible cause to debug)
I'm using IOS58 and I'm launching the Loader directly from the vWii. I can start it either through the Homebrew Channel or (and that's my preferred method) the forwarder for vWii linked on the German site wiidatabase (I can't provide a link, since I'm a new member, but you can google "usb loader gx wiidatabase", click on the first result and in the second blue box there ís a link called "Wii-Modus der Wii U", which leads to the download page for the forwarder).

If you enabled parental control, but the game is higher level and is not suitable for the chosen age (or the default if you didn't choose any), it won't display either !
I haven't enabled parental control. Also even games for ages 0+ don't show.

If you enabled any "category filtering" and either didn't set a category to the game, selected one wrongly (there are different positions!), or display one that is not part of the game you want, it won't display too.
I haven't emabled any filtering. I just started USB Loader GX and the only settings I changed were settings like changing the cIOS to the IOS.

If your device has multiple partition (even hidden ones), and you selected to display the one where you don't have games.... well... you know the result too :P
My USB has only one partition. And I chose the correct partition in the settings (it's the only one with 64 GB).


Thanks for your help and patience with me. I'm positive you guys can help me! :D


Edit: Formating the drive to WBFS didn't do the trick. The games are still not visible. Putting the USB stick into the upper port also didn't do the trick. It just made the whole stick invisible for USB Loader GX. So all the games are still invisible and I have to use the lower port for my USB stick.
I might be able to get my hand on a cheap external HDD or to swap my 2.5" HDD in my PC for a SSD on black friday, cyber monday and all those shopping excuses. But if I could get the stick working I could save myself that money.
Oh, and by the way, does the Wii U and/or vWii work with an external SSD? In that case I might not need a Y-cable to power it and could swap my HDD for a SSD in the long run and power 2 SSDs (one for the Wii U and one for the vWii) on the 2 ports on the back without having to swap them.
 
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Cyan

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wbfs didn't help ? maybe that flashdrive doesn't even work with that partition format.
try another flashdrive if you can, or like you said you already have a "wii drive" for the wii. just use the same one.
Wii drive or vWii drive are the same.

I'm 100% sure, you need to use the back-top port (which is USB0).
the bottom one ONLY works with IOS58, that's why you can see the content/drive with 58, but you won"t be able to launch any Wii game which requires a reload to cIOS (and losing access to port1. Only Port0 works with cIOS)
(well, it's more complicated than that, all depends on the IOS and port order, but to make it simple : back top with no other USB plugged (not even wiiu drive) to test until everything works fine)

External SSD should work, unless they are using the same "USB interface" than a flash drive.
but you will pay more for an SSD at risk that it doesn't work.

"WD element" HDD is recommended.
 
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godreborn

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I use wd elements for my wii u hdd; think the one for the vwii is a wd blue drive. wd elements is one of the best drives I've seen, so I've bought at least 10 of them over the years for different consoles.
 
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Gruphius

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wbfs didn't help ? maybe that flashdrive doesn't even work with that partition format.
try another flashdrive if you can, or like you said you already have a "wii drive" for the wii. just use the same one.
Wii drive or vWii drive are the same.
I didn't want to try the Wii USB so far, since I still need it in the Wii and don't want to take any risk at corrupting it. But if you say it's safe I could use it to try if I can get USB Loader GX to run on my Wii U with a USB stick at all.

I'm 100% sure, you need to use the back-top port (which is USB0).
the bottom one ONLY works with IOS58, that's why you can see the content/drive with 58, but you won"t be able to launch any Wii game which requires a reload to cIOS (and losing access to port1. Only Port0 works with cIOS)
(well, it's more complicated than that, all depends on the IOS and port order, but to make it simple : back top with no other USB plugged (not even wiiu drive) to test until everything works fine)
Okay, that will most likely take a while to test out, since I wasn't able to get the stick running in the upper slot at all so far.

External SSD should work, unless they are using the same "USB interface" than a flash drive.
but you will pay more for an SSD at risk that it doesn't work.
As far as I know they don't. But they don't use the same interface as a HDD either. And it will probably be even cheaper, since a 64 GB SSD costs not that much more than a 64GB stick, since they are way to small for most applications. And a external USB case for the SSD doesn't cost that much either. I also have already one 120GB SSD in my PC which I wanted to swap for a bigger one anyways.
 

Gruphius

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I just tried a few things. One of them is unplugging the Wii U HDD when in the vWii menu. That one lead to the stick being found in USB port 0 and not only in port 1. However when I plugged the Wii U drive in the front ports (since I read on another thread that the vWii has no access to them) the stick wasn't found anymore. I also tried out the Wii stick (which works 100% without problems on the Wii). But everytime the stick is found I can't see any games, despite the free space and maximum capacity shown correctly. So I guess it's either a hardware or a configuration issue.
 

godreborn

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like I said, your problem is your using a flash drive. the wii may not care, but I can assure you the wii u will have lots of problems with one.
 
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Gruphius

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@Cyan @godreborn Yesterday I finaly upgraded my PC with a 3.5" HDD replacing a 2.5" HDD. I decided to use the old HDD as drive for the vWii. I formatted the drive as NTFS, put my games on it and pluged it into my Wii U. USB Loader GX still doesn't show any games (despite it recognizing the HDD and it being chosen as used partition in the hard drive settings). However WiiFlow works now as intended (after I set it up to use the correct directory (which is HDD -> wbfs)). I'd prefer to use USB Loader GX though. Do you guys have any ideas?
 

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Did you try to use cIOS for the loader's IOS instead of IOS58 ?
which version of d2x cIOS did you install ? and which slot is used in usbgx ?

how are you launching it ? from HBC or from a forwarder ?

which revision of USBLoaderGX are you using ? (written on boot screen)

if you use Blackb0x modded version, there is a "Title cache" option to load faster by "not loading games list from the HDD but from the cache". if your cache is empty.... no game will be listed and loaded.
You need to actively force a refresh of the game list to read them from HDD.
or disable the Title Cache option.
I don't know how that cache option is working on first run, or when adding game, whether it force a refresh of installed games from HDD or not.

did you try to reset every settings ? (clean reinstall of the loader, only the 3 files in the apps/usbloader_gx/ folder)

which is HDD -> wbfs)
this is not enough. the full path, file name, file extension and the file formats are important too.
USBGX is not compatible with all existing path layout, but a lot are supported. https://gbatemp.net/threads/usb-loa...ck-to-hbc-for-some-games.386627/#post-5455832
usbgx is not compatible with ciso.

Though, it also didn't work when the hdd was formatted as wbfs, which doesn't have any file format/extension issue.

sorry, I exhausted the ideas :P
 
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Desraptor

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I hope u didnt mix something with Wii and vWii to softmod it.
I was fighting once with my vWii and gx Loader, too.
I think u are using cios v52 in ios 249,250,251. And I installed the trucha bug in ios 236, it opens the hardware for homebrew.
Then i use a gx loader mod, wich first loads ios 58 to initialize USB. Then automatically change to 251 for gx loader.
Then normaly its up to the used drive and choosen format, if gx loader likes it or not.
 

Cyan

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I installed the trucha bug in ios 236, it opens the hardware for homebrew.
It doesn't really open the hardware if homebrew don't explicitly run on IOS236, which no more homebrew does.
They are now all using IOS58 with AHB access instead of relying on an old signature bug in IOS36 (installed in 236)
 
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