NDS Strangelove, or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The FlashMe

OK. As mentioned, I am now in a position to run WMB roms (arm9 and arm7 code only, runs from iwram) on my Nintendo DS.

Here’s how:

Equipment needed:

  • Nintendo DS. (Duh)
  • Ralink rt2500-based PCI card. Mine’s a Minitar
    which I purchased from some place in WA.
  • GBA Movie Player. I got mine from Lik-Sang.
  • Compact Flash card. I borrowed a 16MB one from Shane. Obviously you don’t need to borrow one from Shane to make this work.
  • Compact Flash card reader.
  • Screwdrivers.

Software needed:

  • FlashMP by Chishm. I tried Version 2, but it seems to have problems with smaller CF cards, so I ended up with Version 1. I’ll describe both.
  • WiFiMe WMB driver, WMB app and WiFiMe data.
  • FlashMe NDS firmware replacement.

After confirming that the NDS could boot the GBAMP, and uploading the e19 updated for the GBAMP from the GBAMP website, I grabbed the WMB and confirmed that I could multiboot the Polarium USA Demo.

I then loaded up and ran the gbamp2.gba file from flashgb2, which seemed to work fine, could run GBA multiboot files, but not WiFiMe’d NDS multiboot files, giving me a pair of white screens. IRC discussion revealed that others had had this problem with smaller CF cards, and that FlashMP2 couldn’t process a FAT12 partition, only a FAT16 partition. Windows won’t let you make a FAT16 partition on such a small device, but Linux was happy to oblige. This however didn’t solve the problem, nor did removing the partition table and making the whole CF card a single filesystem.

Also on IRC it was suggested that flashmp1 did not suffer from this problem. So I grabbed flashmp1, which worked fine, and let me run both DSLinux, demo1.nds from doublec’s tutorial, and flashme.nds. So I decided I’d risk it, and install flashme, which seems to be happily working now.

Current status is that if I put a _BOOT_MP.NDS file onto the CF card, and put the CF card into the GBAMP, and the GBAMP into the NDS, it’ll run the .nds file immediately, without the health-screen warning. So I’m happy, and ready to move on with the rest of doublec’s tutorials.

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