Adding Custom Firmware To Nintendo 3DSXL

This tutorial assumes that you already have Luma3DS installed to the MicroSD card in the 3DS. From here, you will install Luma3DS to the internal memory as well as several other pieces of software to enable the extended functionality of a custom firmware setup. Before proceeding, download the latest versions of ctr-no-timeoffset, FBI (3dsx and cia files), DSP1 (just the cia file), GodMode9, Homebrew Launcher Wrapper, Universal Updater (cia file), Checkpoint 3.7.4 (cia file), and Anemone3DS (cia file).

Preparing Custom Firmware For 3DSXL

With the 3DS powered off, remove the MicroSD card from the console and insert it into your computer. In the root folder of the MicroSD card, create a folder called 3ds and one called cias.

Copy ctr-no-timeoffset.3dsx and FBI.3dsx to the 3ds folder. Copy Homebrew_Launcher.cia, FBI.cia, DSP1.cia, Anemone3DS.cia, Checkpoint.cia, and Universal-Updater.cia to the cias folder.

Create a folder called payloads within the luma folder on the MicroSD card. Unzip the GodMode9*.zip archive and copy GodMode9.firm to the /luma/payloads folder. Copy the gm9 folder to the root of the MicroSD card. Eject the MicroSD card and reinsert it into the 3DS console. Power on the console and verify that it has the latest updates. If needed, navigate to System Settings > Other Settings > System Update.

Installing Custom Firmware On 3DSXL

From the 3DS main menu, launch the Download Play application. When you see the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS buttons, press L + DOWN + SELECT at the same time to open the Rosalina menu. Select “Miscellaneous Options” from the menu, then “Switch the hb. title to the current app”. Press B until Rosalina exits, then press HOME and close Download Play.

Launch Download Play again. This time, the Homebrew Launcher application will launch. Select ctr-no-timeoffset from the list. Press A to set the offset to 0, then press START to return to Homebrew Launcher. Select FBI from the list. In the file directory, navigate to SD > cias. Select <current directory> then “Install and delete all CIAs” and press A to confirm. Press HOME and close Download Play. Your home screen will now display icons for Homebrew Launcher, FBI, DSP1, Anemone3DS, Checkpoint, and Universal Updater.

Install DSP so homebrew applications will have access to sound

Launch DSP1 from the home screen. Once completed, press B to delete the app and return to the home menu.

Install Luma3DS to CTRNAND

Shut down the 3DS console. Press and hold START while powering the 3DS console back on to launch GodMode9. Create the essential files backup and fix the date and time if prompted, then press A to continue. Press HOME to open the action menu, then select “Scripts…” > “GM9Megascript” > “Scripts from Plailect’s Guide” > “Setup Luma3DS to CTRNAND” and press A when prompted, then follow the on-screen instructions. When you’ve returned to the action menu, select “Cleanup SD card” and follow the on-screen instructions.

SysNAND Backup

From the GodMode9 action menu, select “Backup Options” > “SysNAND Backup”. Once completed, press B to return to the menu, then select “Dump Options” > “Dump Boot9.bin & Boot11.bin” and follow the on-screen instructions. Once finished, exit and navigate to [S:] SYSNAND VIRTUAL and select essential.exefs then “Copy to 0:/gm9/out”. Once completed, press HOME to return to the action menu and select “Poweroff system”.

Once the console is shut down, remove the MicroSD card and insert it into your computer. Copy the contents of the /gm9/out/ folder from the MicroSD card to your computer for safe keeping. After copying, delete <date>_<serialnumber>_sysnand_###.bin and <date>_<serialnumber>_sysnand_###.bin.sha from the /gm9/out/ folder. Eject the MicroSD card from the computer and reinsert it in the 3DS console.

Custom Firmware Applications

You now have access to several custom applications from the home menu with the option to install many more. The installed applications are as follows:

  • Homebrew Launcher lists and launches homebrew applications with the .3dsx file extension.
  • Universal Updater is the 3ds homebrew app store.
  • Checkpoint backs up and restores save files for DS/3DS games.
  • Anemone3DS is a custom theme manager for 3DS.
  • FBI installs games and applications with the .cia file extension.
  • GodMode9 is a root access file browser for 3DS. It can also dump cartridges to MicroSD and create *.cia files for installing via FBI.

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