Complete Wii Softmodding / Hacking Guide, Part 2: Setting Up

Welcome to the second part of my softmodding guide for the Nintendo Wii.  If you have not completely read the first part, please do so before continuing on.  In this part of the guide, we’re going to get all of our files together and prepare the Wii for a proper softmod.

If you have already attempted to hack your Wii to some degree, you will need to do everything you can to put it back to a virgin state.  I can only provide a few suggestions to doing that, as it’s impossible to completely remove all of your hacks once you’ve done something to it.  If you haven’t hacked anything on your Wii before, you can skip all of the following steps. I attribute credit on this part of the guide to Dogeggs, Tona, bsmalley23, and Davi92 of http://www.wiihacks.com.

  1. Download the cleanup tools here and extract them to the root of your SD card. Don’t use an SDHC card.
  2. If you are running system menu 4.0 or earlier, do an official Nintendo update to 4.1.  This will delete a lot of your hacks.  You can also skip step three.
  3. If you are running system menu 4.1, downgrade to 3.2 using cIOS Downgrader 1.2 and then do an official Nintendo update.
  4. If you have preloader or DVDx on your Wii, run NAND Clean (part of the cleanup tools).  Say yes to everything it asks you to delete.  Do NOT run this until you have done an official update from Nintendo.
  5. Now, load AnyTitle Deleter (also part of the cleanup tools) and delete any IOS you have installed with a number higher than 200.  Do not delete any others along with those or you will most likely brick your Wii.
  6. If you have Bootmii, run the installer and uninstall it.
  7. Again in AnyTitle Deleter, go to Installed Channels and delete any channels that you have custom installed (backup launchers, pirated virtual console/wiiware, injected wads, etc.)

As an alternative, if you don’t have Bootmii and are not on 4.1, just delete all of your installed non-default channels (including the Homebrew channel) and then update to 4.1.  The update should overwrite any preloader you have installed (including preloader 0.28 and 0.29) and you should theoretically be clean.

Your previously hacked Wii should now be clean and running System Menu 4.1, but I’m not responsible for any unlikely damage that may result from trying to undo your hacks.  Most likely, everything will still work, as I’ve done this myself.

If you haven’t already hacked your Wii and read over that, don’t be intimidated or overwhelmed.  There’s a lot of material to cover, and that’s why this guide is split into different parts.

The next thing we’re going to do is check the serial number on your Wii to ensure that we can softmod it.  You can find your serial number on the side (or bottom) of your Wii… you’ll know it once you see it.  It’ll look something like this:

Wii Serial Number

Wii Serial Number

The model number in this picture is an LU10.  There are many many different model numbers floating around out there.  My personal Wii, for example, is an LU37, and I’ve seen members on various forums who have had numbers all the way up to LU90. Nintendo released the LU64 line around the middle of March 2009, and since that batch was released, there have been protections in place to stop a hacker from installing a cIOS.  These protections have since been circumvented, but only with about a 50% or less success rate.  The other 50% end up with a bricked Wii, and because of that, this guide will not support LU64+ models.

If you have an LU64+, however, there is still hope.  Your safest route would be to install a no-solder modchip.  As the name implies, these chips do not require any type of soldering and are designed with ease-of-installation in mind.  Plus, you will still be able to do everything that any softmodded Wii can do… you’ll just have to spend money on the chip.  The most popular Wii modchip by far is the WiiKey, but as you can see for yourself in the picture below, they are hardly simple to install and can be rather intimidating to a beginner.  The chip that I would recommend for LU64+ users is the DriveKey, which you can find here for 50$.  Also on this page is an illustration of how easy they are to set up.

An installed WiiKey

An installed WiiKey. Scary, eh?

Okay, now for those of you doing a clean install who have never tweaked your Wii, let’s get prepared:

  1. Back up everything on your SD card to your computer.
  2. Format your SD card to FAT32.
  3. Make sure your network access to your Wii is working.
  4. Disconnect any Gamecube controller or memory card you have connected to your system.
  5. Download the SD Pack I put together by clicking here.
  6. Extract the SD Pack to your empty SD card.
  7. Free up as much memory on your Wii as possible.  I’d recommend having at least 400-500 blocks free.

You can now continue to part three by clicking here, where we’ll finally get our feet wet and start doing some hacking.

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70 Responses to Complete Wii Softmodding / Hacking Guide, Part 2: Setting Up

  1. NeoGeo says:

    Hello,

    I had a question about the serial keys. I noticed you only discuss the US serial keys on this page. However, as an owner of a European Wii, I have a wildly different serial key. Are we Europeans able to use the same step-list for the softmod, or do we need to use different software than listed in this guide or do different steps?

    Regards,

    Me

  2. randomcollegestudent says:

    You probably have one of the LEH or LEF series. From what research I’ve done, everything but LEH24+ and LEF24+ should be hackable, but I would do it at your own risk. If it came installed with any version of System Menu 3, you’re probably okay.

  3. abner says:

    can i play imported games this way? thanks for the guide looks helpful

  4. randomcollegestudent says:

    Yes, you will be able to play games from Japan and Europe (or the United States if you’re in one of those areas yourself) simply by editing some of the settings in Preloader. If you have any questions during the guide, just post a comment or catch me on the Live Chat on the right side of the page.

  5. abner says:

    thanks for the reply. i have a couple of questions if you don’t mind. is it 100% safe to softmod a wii to play imports? that’s all I’m interested in doing this for, and I’ll be ordering the game online too. can you recommend the safest route to accomplish playing imports on wii, software wise?

    Also, can I use an SDHC card for this or only SD card (i don’t know the difference)? Sorry, I’m completely new at this and just want to make sure I don’t mess anything up.

    thanks for your time.

  6. randomcollegestudent says:

    Imports can be played simply by editing a few settings in the preloader. If you edit any settings that cause things to stop working, all you have to do is simply change them back to the way they were.

    If you want to be 100% safe, then you need to use an SD card and not an SDHC card. 4.0+ can read SDHC cards, but lesser versions can’t, and at one point in the guide you’ll have to downgrade your firmware.

    If you have any further questions just catch me on the Live Chat on the right side of the page.

  7. rahul says:

    Hi,
    I have a wii that is at hacked 3.3U and have updated the system to 4.1U. I have followed your instructions and trying to delete ios249 and ios254 using anytitle deleter. I am getting an error 1017. Can you please help. What do I do next..

  8. AK says:

    You mentioned LU64+ are risky to softmod…I have LU64XXXXXX-4, is this okay since its not 64+. Or am I confusing myself?

  9. randomcollegestudent says:

    That’s LU64. Don’t softmod it.

  10. Ove says:

    Hi,

    You said all LEH24+ can not be softmod.
    Does this means all numbers larger than LEH24+ ?

    I have a LEH27xxxxxxxxxx. So this can not be softmod?
    Thanks in advnacew for your answer.

  11. free wii says:

    great guide, but can this wreck the wii?

  12. slipknot says:

    I used this guide to hack my wii with absolutely no problems ,now i’m trying to do a friends and when i try to extract the first sd pack using winrar i keep getting a error message saying file is corrupt or damaged.Is it something i’m overlooking or how can i solve the problem?

  13. slipknot says:

    i couple times i’ve tried redownloading the pack and megamanager gets an error at 3.01 MB everytime.

  14. Ryan says:

    Your computer has an issue then. It downloads fine for me.

    @ Free wii: It can if you don’t follow the instructions.

  15. slipknot says:

    is there anywhere else i can download these exact sd packs because the ones on rapid share aren’t working for me for some reason.

  16. Jamswii says:

    Can you please post the SD pack to mediafire also. I cant download from rapidshare.

  17. tstarksinlb says:

    I am unable to play any PAL games, please advise why and what changes do i have to make to play both NTSC and PAL games? I see many other modded Wii’s that play both. Please help soon

  18. AK says:

    I have installed drivekey on my LU64 serial wii. Is it possible to load backup games from USB drive? If yes, please guide me to the post that shows me how.

    Thanks
    AK

  19. luisfhb says:

    Do official update to 4.1 delete HBC? If so, how am I supposed to load AnytitleDeleter or nandClean?

  20. Sadiyoyo says:

    Hi,

    I have bought a wii console korean version of 3.5,its serial # Starts with LKM107xxx,and i have big problem that the menu is in korean language which unfortunately i tried but helplessly couldn’t be able to figure out how to change the menu into english language,i want to modify it once and for all without needing any update to override any previous modofications i already have applied,

    Please giude me into it and many thanks,

  21. dave says:

    i am a newbie and i was wondering if i can softmod me wii its a lu37 cause i see everyone saying don’t soft mod if you have a lu64+ so im confused because you sed yours is an lu37. any way can i use your tutorial thanx

  22. PsychoMantis says:

    Hi,
    Thanks for this great guide, its the best i’ve seen!
    Everyone be careful from now on because updating through wifi will take your sytem to v4.2, wich isn’t hacked yet and can damage the wii if you already made some modifications..
    The guide should have an offline section on how to update to v4.1.. if this is possible of course..
    Thanks everyone 🙂

  23. Mae Culpa says:

    Hi, when running DowngradeIOS35 the downgrade IOS35 went wrong because of no network. When I want to rerun it it says the title is already run. Any suggestions what to do?

  24. carealot says:

    hi,
    i stumble upon your site when i was looking for steps in soft modding my wii. however, my wii is a jap version, is your guide still applicable for my wii? it has never been modded or opened. I hope your guide works for my wii coz your steps are listed properly and seems easy to follow.

    thanks!

  25. dawz says:

    I have a wii that is at hacked. I have followed your instructions and trying to delete ios249 and ios254 using anytitle deleter. I am getting an error ticket delete failed (no ticket?)-102. Can you please help. What do I do next..

  26. Ron says:

    Hi,
    Great write up!

    One question, how can I tell if my Wii has been prevously hacked? I bought it second hand. It will be obvious if I see the Homebrew Channel but is there other things I should look for? Or to be safe, should I just go through the cleanup tools procedure since I don’t know what the previous owner did.

  27. Esspeez says:

    Is there anyway of downloading the SD pack without becoming a premium member of rapidshare? It wont allow it for free users.

    Bit rubbish that really.

  28. grant says:

    18 november.just downloaded eyerything from rapidshsre for free.

  29. Ben says:

    Hi great guide!

    Am just about to set off on this softmod journey. But before I do, I just wanted to double check about using a Mac. Are you sure you have to use Windows?

    I dont want to have to have Windows on my Mac.
    Thanks!

  30. […] can delete most of the stuff Complete Wii Softmodding / Hacking Guide, Part 2: Setting Up Some Random College Student's Blog If you were to go online and the wii was updated you wont get banned but it will be unlikely that […]

  31. Ibrahiim says:

    hey do you know if this will work with a v.4.2 wii?

  32. Bill says:

    Great Doc. Thx for taking the time to share. I wanted to get started but hit a question on the first step. I am running v4.2U as well. Anyone know if this process will work on v4.2U?

  33. Sizen says:

    My wii says “The data cannot be moved”. So I cannot move my hack files which are on the SD card and start the hacking. I formated my 2GB Sandisk SD card into FAT32 and when that didn’t work I tried something called FAT(default). What do I do?

  34. Sizen says:

    And another thing I want to ask is that my wii in firmware 4.1e. will this guide work. Thank U very much. I’m just going crazy playing only wii sport resort so I want to softmode my so I can play more games.

  35. Xan says:

    is there another site to dl the file on rapidshare? I have been trying for a few days and every time it states I must be a premium member. anyone put this file up on torrent?

  36. Xan says:

    Nevermind… If anyone has this problem, just continue to click on the link. It eventually worked for me!

    Thanks!

  37. Ron says:

    I’ve been trying to dl all day, I hate rapidshare.

  38. ANT2K5 says:

    How do you update to version 4.1? If I update through official updater it will get me to 4.2 which I’ve read cannot be hacked as of yet. Is that true?

  39. Hi all.

    I hope the blogger changes the following in his post. If you currently use the official Nintendo upgrade, you get upgraded to 4.2! This is not what the blog-item/info assumes (it assumes you get updated to 4.1). I found http://www.wiihacks.com/recommended-faqs-guides-tutorials-only/24839-get-cios-4-2-wii.html > so for everyone following instructions and finding themselves on 4.2, you might want to check that out. I’m currently looking into it myself how to proceed, now that, following this blog, i have updated to 4.2 (E, in my case). By the way: HomeBrewChannel (HBC) is still active on my Wii!

  40. Tonic says:

    Hi, i’m confused. i have a black wii which is version 4.2E with serial LEF50XXXXXX can this be softmodded?

  41. Adurna says:

    I need to tell you that your SD Pack installer that you created the link isn’t working. When I click on it, it brings me to rapidshare after I click free member download it took me to the page Error. I think you need to reload that file back. Also same goes for your other SD pack NTSC SD Pack 2,and PAL SD Pack 2, and your SD Pack 3. Can you please upload those files up again onto this website

  42. mike says:

    sorry im new to this do i need a chip to do all of this

  43. trallallero says:

    @Adurna: the SD Pack installer is downloadable from rapidhshare, just done it. I think you have some problem with your browser.

    But I have a LEH 5012xxxx … can it be softmodded?

  44. Keeper07 says:

    i have wii system menu 4.2u and i need to know how to mod it to get dvdx to work so i can download games online and play them. will u please let me no how to do it asap i will greatly appreciate it.

  45. Leif144 says:

    THanks heaps for this guide well written and clearly formatted so far.
    Unfortunatly i have an issue of download the ‘sd pack’ from Rapidshare. it gives me an error and suggests i go sign up and pay 😦
    Can i download it somewhere else? and may i kindly suggest you try using ‘mediafire’ instead. It doesnt give any waiting time and never gives you an problems for being a ‘free user’.

  46. Willio9 says:

    Can someone please let me know if this guide works with a virgin wii with version 4.2E?????

  47. DavZTH says:

    I accidentally ran NAND Clean before updating my Wii. Please help!!! How can I fix my issue!?

  48. DonebenZY!. says:

    HEY GUYS!.. IMPROTANT MESSAGE!!! ANYONE USING THIS TUTORIAL IS NOT GOING TO GET UPDATED TO 4.1 USING WII OFFICIAL UPDATE BUT TO 4.2, BUT DONT BE WORRIED. THERE IS A WAY TO SOFTMOD YOUR WII 4.2 (ANY VERSION “U,E”)
    HERE IS A COOL TUTORIAL I USED TO SOFTMOD MY WII ABOUT 3 MONTHS AGO AND ITS BEEN WORKING EVER SINCE WITHOUT ANY PROBS

    FOLLOW THE LINK AND MAKE SURE YOU DO ALL STEPS AS IT IS SHOWN IN THE VIDEO. IF NOT YOU’LL HAVE TO START ALL OVER AGAIN AND GET IT RIGHT, ITS SAFE AND EASY TO USE.
    TOOK ME 20 MINS TO COMPLETE IT. :D…. MINE IS A 4.2 U
    WANNA CHANGE TO WII HD.

  49. Ben says:

    Hi guys,
    I have a Wii with a serial LAH10330735, Can this type be SoftModed?

  50. Bob says:

    So… I just bought a wii today. It’s serial number is LU81 so I should hard mod it instead, correct?

  51. dj says:

    all i have installed is the homebrew channel. do i really need to do all these steps? arent i going to be installing homebrew again? i just wanna install usbloader now that i have homebrew channel

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