Supported Wii U firmware versions:

This guide used to cover multiple firmware version (5.5.1, 5.5.2 and 5.5.3), but I decided to drop support for hacking the Wii U on lower firmware. Even if it's entirely possible to stay on 5.5.1 version and fully hack the console, it had some disadvantages: It required more steps and tools to hack it, and at the end you'd had more issues staying on a lower firmware. I think it's better to go to 5.5.3 right away and forget about the problems you'll have if you stay on 5.5.1 (game update not working, game launching giving an error, no eshop access, CBHC removed after updating to 5.5.3).

There's no reason to stay on 5.5.1 anymore. This version was the best for a long time because it had a more stable web exploit, but now a new stable version is available for 5.5.3 !

This guide will give you all the current hacking options and give you a choice on what works best for your situations. Unlike other guides I will not simply give you a set of instructions and tell you to follow it blindly. Read up on everything so you can make an informed decision on what will work best for you.


  • Blank SD formatted to FAT32 (IF you have one that you are using for vWii just copy all your data to your PC first and reformat it to FAT32. You can copy the vWii stuff back after we're done.) Make sure that your SD card is large enough to backup your entire sysNAND. You'll need the next size up from your Wii U internal memory size. For example, if you have a 32gb Wii U then you'll need a 64GB SD card. Windows will not format your large SD card to fat32. You'll need to use a third party tool to do so. I recommend using "GuiFormat" *note* If you don't want to backup your entire nand that's okay. At least get otp.bin and seeprom and you'll be fine.
  • Do NOT give your SD card a name with capital letters. Example: "SD". That will give you problems. Make sure your SD card has no name or you use lowercase letters.
  • A computer capable of reading SD card and internet access.
  • External USB Hard Drive if you want to install and launch titles from USB. Don't use a flash drive. They do work. They are usually just too small for your needs. You will need either a Hard Drive that has it's own power cable or a USB Y cable for hard drives that come with only a single USB cable.
  • Turn off "Standby functions" and "Auto Power Down" inside of your Wii U power settings menu.
  • A Wii U with a firmware no greater than 5.5.3 (5.5.3 is the latest).


There are two levels of hacking on WiiU : user level and kernel level (custom firmware).
With the user level you can launch homebrew from the homebrew launcher, while with the kernel level you unlock the full potential of the console up to installing and launching new unsigned channels. That's probably what you are looking for: Custom Firmware to install and launch games?

With the first user level, you can launch games with the loadiine homebrew, loading games from SD card. Some people are still using that method.
With the kernel level (or CFW), you can install games on your WiiU menu, located on internal memory or a WiiU HDD. This is the most used method.

In order to unlock the kernel level (CFW), you'll have to choose between three methods:
- either you run the homebrew launcher first (user level hacking), and from here you launch a firmware patcher only when you need it.
- either you install Haxchi, and manually launch it every time you want to patch the firmware to CFW directly without going into homebrew launcher.
- either you install CBHC which will patch the firmware automatically at console's boot.

This guide will cover all three possibilities, you are free to follow them in order and stop at the one you want. There is no better solution than other, all three methods give you access to the same features. The only differences are the requirements, how you use them and how different your console behave.

If you are on a lower firmware, update to 5.5.3 (5.5.3 is the latest) officially from the update option in your WiiU settings.

If you are currently blocking firmware updates using any filtering options to stay on any lower firmware version than 5.5.3, you'll need to undo your filtering method first.
If you want help to undo your filtering, you can look in further section "2. install an entry point" and "Blocking update". Find the method you did (dns, router, proxy, nand) and undo it by doing things in reverse, or clearing your settings: DNS auto, delete router's filtering URL, no proxy, etc.
Then come back here to follow the guide from the start.

Note: If your console is already hacked and you already have CBHC installed, do not follow this step to update your console.
Updating the console with CBHC installed will be covered later.

Update to 5.5.3:
  • Be sure you are not filtering any Nintendo's servers to block updates. If you do, disable all filtering.
  • Go into your Wii U settings.
  • Select the update option and perform an official firmware update.
  • Let the console update and reboots.

What is an entry point?
In order to run any kind of homebrew on the system you will need a way to execute unsigned code. This is the initial "hack" that is the gateway or "entry point" to the whole world of homebrew and game loaders. Currently the most popular methods are:

- Browserhax (temporary)
- HaxChi (persistent)
- CBHC, Cold Boot HaxChi (persistent and automatic)

HaxChi is a more reliable entry point than browserhax. It's an offline method using an installed game on your Wii U menu, while browserhax requires a working internet connection. In order to install HaxChi you'll have to use browserhax a couple of times.

Haxchi is also capable of patching your firmware to removes Signature Check, commonly called Custom Firmware (CFW)! This is what you want.
Removing signature check is required to launch installed games or installed homebrew.

If you don't want to use haxchi (or CBHC) to put the console in Custom firmware mode, you can use other firmware patchers directly from browserhax. It'll be covered later in the CFW section.

Installing HaxChi gives you an easy entry point to the world of homebrew. You can use HaxChi to boot to Homebrew Launcher (this is the default), patch the system into CFW, or configure it as a shortcut to launch any of your various homebrew applications located on your SD card with the click of a button. After you setup the initial HaxChi (using a DS game that you have purchased from the eshop), you can then create additional free HaxChi's that exist as icons on the Wii U system menu allowing you to launch whatever you want with one single click or tap (think of vWii channel forwarders as an example).

Latest Haxchi:
If you do not want to install a permanent hack, skip this haxchi step. You can always use browserhax, but it's less reliable.
  1. Put you SD card in your computer if it's not already there
  2. Visit this link on your computer:
  3. Download latest zip file ( is latest right now)
  4. Extract the zip file and copy entire contents to the ROOT of your SD. It should look like this:
  • SD:\haxchi\...
  • SD:\wiiu\apps\haxchi\...
Download the 5.5.3 browserhax payload
  1. Make sure your SD card is still in your PC.
  2. Download the file from
  3. Extract the file payload.elf from the downloaded zip into your "SD://wiiu/" folder.
Download the latest Homebrew Launcher:
Download and install Hombrew Launcher to your SD card.
  1. Make sure your SD card is still in your PC.
  2. Download the latest version of HBL here. Don't download the Channel version, instead download "" (Under the section "Release v1.4").
  3. Extract the zip. Copy the folder "wiiu" from the extracted files to root of your SD overwriting and merging when prompted.
  4. Now you have your SD card setup to launch HomeBrew Launcher.
Download the latest Homebrew App Store:
Download the full Homebrew App Store (HBAS) to your SD card. This program lets you browse and download homebrew to your SD card directly from the console.
  1. Make sure your SD card is still in your PC.
  2. Download the file "" from here.
  3. Extract the zip on your computer.
  4. Copy and merge the folder "apps" from the extracted folder to the "wiiu" folder on your SD. When it's done it should look like this: SD:\wiiu\apps\appstore\...
  5. Now you have your SD card setup to launch Homebrew App Store.
You can use the Homebrew App Store to download other tools that you will need in this guide going forward.
1. Make sure that you have read and followed the instructions in the "SD File preparation" section above before moving on. Insert your SD card back into your Wii U if you haven't already.

2. You will now use the browserhax entry point to launch the Homebrew launcher located on your SD card.
This entry point is not 100% stable and can freeze the entire console when you do it, which is the reason you are installing Haxchi for future homebrew entry point.
Note that 5.5.1 browser exploit had a better success rate than 5.5.2/5.5.3 browser exploit. But a new browser exploit is now available for 5.5.2 and 5.5.3, so you don't need to worry and should really update to 5.5.3 instead of using 5.5.1. This guide only covers 5.5.3!

3. For Wii U Firmware 5.5.2 and 5.5.3 (NEW reliable exploit):
  • Open your Wii U Browser and visit this page
  • When the page loads click on the word "HAXX".
  • Homebrew Launcher (HBL) should show up.
If it freezes or doesn't work, power off your console (unplug the cable or keep the Power button pressed for 6 seconds). Then, try clearing your saved data for your Internet Browser inside the Wii U settings page and try again.

If you want to host the server yourself, learn how to do it here.

4. Homebrew launcher has successfully launched.
You are now in a temporary homebrew enabled console state until you reboot your console.
:!: Performing the "entry point" hack will be needed every time you shutdown, reset your WiiU, access the settings, or exit from vWii mode.
To prevent you from having to rely on the unstable browser exploit every time you reboot the console, it's recommended to install Haxchi (and later even install an auto boot into haxchi). But if you don't want haxchi, you can always use the browserhax instead.

This temporary patched firmware state allows you to launch unsigned programs. This is not a full custom firmware yet, it only allows you to launch unsigned homebrew, not unsigned games.

To prevent you from re-doing the browserhax every time you want to return to the homebrew launcher, the homebrew launcher has been installed into the MiiMaker channel!
If you want to launch Homebrew launcher again, DO NOT perform the browser exploit again or it will freeze and crash the console. Instead, just launch MiiMaker channel.
If you want to access the real MiiMaker channel, choose "exit" in the Homebrew launcher menu.

You can now launch homebrew from the Homebrew launcher.
To install haxchi, you need an official NDS game bought on eShop. After installing haxchi, that NDS game will be unplayable, so choose one you don't want to play.
You can't skip this requirement as you need your first haxchi to be installed over a good-signed game.

Haxchi is a NDS homebrew replacing the internal NDS game ROM inside the installed NDS channel's emulator.
The emulator needs to be good-signed in order to be launched on a "clean firmware", before letting haxchi patch the firmware into CFW and get homebrew entry point.

For European consoles who already connected to eShop in early years of the console, you'll find the NDS game "Brain training" for free!
For anyone else, there are NDS games for less than 10$.
If your country/region doesn't have an official eShop, you won't be able to install haxchi or CBHC, you'll have to do the browserhax method every time you boot the console.

1. **Unplug all USB drives.**
Haxchi MUST be installed on internal console memory (system NAND, or sysNAND).

If you did not unplug the USB when buying the required NDS game or you already have the needed NDS game located on USB, you need to move the game to sysNAND first.
This is important for later steps in the guide.
Access the data management menu in the WiiU settings, and select move to internal.

If you already have the required OFFICIALLY BOUGHT NDS game, skip to step 3.

2. Go to the eshop on your Wii U and purchase one of these DS games.
Make sure to test that the game works by launching it at least once after installing it.

ATTENTION: You NEED to purchase the game officially for your first haxchi channel!
If you use a homebrew method to install the game it will NOT work, and you might brick your console if you later install CBHC over it.
You can use a homebrew installed NDS game for any additional haxchi channels you add on your system, but the FIRST haxchi channel needs to be legit.

  • Kawashima: Motto Nou wo Kitaeru Otona no DS Training [JPN]
    Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day! [USA]
    Dr. Kawashima's Brain Training [PAL]
  • Catch! Touch! Yoshi! [JPN]
    Yoshi Touch & Go [USA]
    Yoshi Touch & Go [PAL]
  • Mario Kart DS [JPN]
    Mario Kart DS [USA]
    Mario Kart DS [PAL]
  • New Super Mario Bros. [JPN]
    New Super Mario Bros. [USA]
    New Super Mario Bros. [PAL]
  • Yoshi's Island DS [JPN]
    Yoshi's Island DS [USA]
    Yoshi's Island DS [PAL]
  • Yawaraka Atama Juku [JPN]
    Big Brain Academy [USA]
    Big Brain Academy [PAL]
  • Sawaru: Made in Wario [JPN]
    WarioWare: Touched! [USA]
    WarioWare: Touched! [PAL]
  • Mario & Luigi RPG 2x2 [JPN]
    Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time [USA]
    Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time [PAL]
  • Donkey Kong: Jungle Climber [JPN]
    DK: Jungle Climber [USA]
    Donkey Kong: Jungle Climber [PAL]
  • Hoshi no Kirby: Sanjou! Dorocche Dan [JPN]
    Kirby: Squeak Squad [USA]
    Kirby: Mouse Attack [PAL]
  • Kaitou Wario the Seven [JPN]
    Wario: Master of Disguise [USA]
    Wario: Master of Disguise [PAL]
  • Star Fox Command [JPN]
    Star Fox Command [USA]
    Star Fox Command [PAL]
  • Touch! Kirby's Magic Paintbrush [JPN]
    Kirby: Canvas Curse [USA]
    Kirby: Power Paintbrush [PAL]
  • Zelda no Densetsu: Daichi no Kiteki [JPN]
    The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks [USA]
    The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks [PAL]
  • Super Mario 64 DS [JPN]
    Super Mario 64 DS [USA]
    Super Mario 64 DS [PAL]
  • Zelda no Densetsu: Mugen no Sunadokei [JPN]
    The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass [USA]
    The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass [PAL]
  • Atsumete! Kirby [JPN]
    Kirby Mass Attack [USA]
    Kirby Mass Attack [PAL]
  • Pokemon Ranger [JPN]
    Pokemon Ranger [USA]
    Pokemon Ranger [PAL]
  • Oideyo Doubutsu no Mori [JPN]
    Animal Crossing: Wild World [USA]
    Animal Crossing: Wild World [PAL]
  • Pokemon Fushigi no Dungeon: Sora no Tankentai [JPN]
    Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky [USA]
    Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky [PAL]
  • Pokemon Ranger: Batonnage [JPN]
    Pokemon Ranger: Shadows of Almia [USA]
    Pokemon Ranger: Shadows of Almia [PAL]
  • Pokemon Ranger: Hikari no Kiseki [JPN]
    Pokemon Ranger: Guardian Signs [USA]

3. Return to Homebrew Launcher

If you rebooted your console after purchasing the game, perform the browserhax section again to go into Homebrew launcher.
If you didn't reboot, launch the Homebrew launcher by launching MiiMaker channel.

4. Install Haxchi
You will now install haxchi over the bought NDS game. It will replace its name and icon to "haxchi".
  • Inside of the Homebrew Launcher tap "Haxchi" and then "Load".
  • You will see the DS game list available to use to install haxchi over. Make sure it is selected then push A then A again to install.

5. Haxchi has successfully been installed.
Go back to your Wii U System Menu to see the Haxchi icon in place of your previous NDS game's icon.
You can now get into Homebrew Launcher by tapping the HaxChi icon in the system menu.

ATTENTION: Launching the homebrew launcher multiple times from Haxchi might freeze/crash your console.
Use the MiiMaker channel instead for further homebrew launcher access until you reboot your console.

Once haxchi is installed, you don't need the haxchi files on your SD card anymore, but you NEED to keep the homebrew launcher on SD card!
The homebrew launcher is always accessed and launched from the SD card, it's not copied to internal Wii U memory (yet).
Haxchi is only a quick shortcut to launch the homebrew located on SD card without using the browserhax.

ATTENTION: Do not delete the User account you used to buy the NDS game, or you'll lose access to haxchi.

It's recommended to learn how haxchi is working and what it really does by reading the following section of the guide.

Blocking Updates:

Now that you updated to 5.5.3, and downloaded the needed NDS game for haxchi if you decided to, you can block future Firmware updates to prevent Nintendo from blocking your hacks by releasing a new firmware. (It's very unexpected to get a new firmware update)

There are four methods to block further unexpected console firmware updates without fully disabling internet access:
  • DNS
  • Proxy
  • Router
  • NAND edition
All methods except the NAND edition can have issues with game updates as it'll also block eShop access.

The DNS method is the easiest and fastest method, but is not the better. It's not 100% reliable but is fine enough for basic update blocking setup on the Wii U console.

This is not reliable because:
1. It relies on someone else's service, which can be changed or removed at any time without notice. (It already happened! be careful)
2. Most free DNS filters solution, when offline, allows all URL access instead of blocking all internet. Nintendo's url would therefore be available and an update will be downloaded if Nintendo ever decide to release one.

  • Go into your system settings menu -> Internet -> Connect to the Internet -> Connections (or press X) -> Select your connection -> Change Settings - > DNS -> Don't Auto-obtain
  • Set primary and secondary dsn as follows: (check for updated IP's)
  • set the Primary DNS = (Los Angeles, USA)
  • Set the Secondary DNS = (Alblasserdam, Europe)
For European users, swap the primary and secondary IP to use the European DNS server first for faster internet access.

This will prevent you from automatically downloading an update from the Wii U servers (if/when it comes out).
For more info on each DNS service and the blocked URLs: TitleDB.

If you don't want to rely on someone else's server, you can do it yourself with the free OpenDNS solution.

Attention, it has the same issue: When offline, all URLs are allowed instead of being blocked.

Proxy filtering requires your computer to be powered and act as intermediate device to filter internet access.
If your computer is offline, or the proxy program not running, your WiiU will not have internet access.
The advantage is that vWii homebrew does NOT use the proxy setting, and will have no problem accessing internet while your wiiU will not update.

Proxy method can be long to setup and understand.

Some internet routers, or internet boxes, have a website filtering option. It can be either further filtered using MAC address to limit filtering to WiiU, or only limited to URLs affecting all your connected devices (3DS, computer, etc.)

This method requires Router technical knowledge, not explained in this guide!
Note: Your router settings page is typically,, or

A. Block by URL Filtering in your router settings (allows internet access)

B. Block your Wii U's MAC Address completely (no internet access at all)
1. Go to Wii U Menu -> System Settings -> Internet -> View MAC Address
2. Type the string you see into your MAC address filter (Ex: b8-ae-4e-48-36-fe)

C. Block only your Wii U's using both MAC Address and URL filtering (allows internet access, doesn't block URL on other devices)
If your router has the option to filter URL only on specific MAC address, specify all needed information.

If your router doesn't have that option, and you want to filter ONLY some urls on the Wii U, it's recommended to follow the Proxy method instead, which has more freedom on MAC and chosen URLs.

NAND Edition (Recommended!)
NAND edition prevents console update reliably without affecting all other internet activities. It looks more dangerous as it will need the user to delete a folder from the console's internal system file, but it's very easy to perform. The advantage is that it does NOT filter any servers from Nintendo and will not block game updates.
This is the recommended method !

If you use any filtering method, you will get a CROSS OVER YOUR DOWNLOAD ICON !
This does NOT mean there is a system update! it means it couldn't access internet's update server and therefore THE FILTERING IS WORKING !

We got already hundreds of threads about it. PLEASE, no more.

Learn how to use Haxchi!
Haxchi is a multi-purpose channel, it contains 4 different features:
- Launch the homebrew launcher ; (default)
- Launch any homebrew located on your SD card ;
- Patch the system menu to CFW (signature check removed, region free, etc.);
- Launch a firmware file from SD card (deprecated!).

To configure the behavior of haxchi and choose one of these feature, you need to edit the file on your SD card (sd:/haxchi/ folder), and re-install haxchi to the same NDS game to push the changes into the console.
The SD files are NOT accessed by haxchi channel, you need to reinstall haxchi if you want the changes to the config.txt file or the icons to be applied on the console.

You can setup HaxChi to launch any homebrew title. This is all handled inside of the config.txt file in the HaxChi folder on the root of your SD. Here is the default configuration with each explained.


  • If you hold "A" when launching HaxChi it will launch a fw.img file from your SD. This being a noob guide I wouldn't worry about that for now.
  • If you hold "B" when launching HaxChi you will boot into a Custom FirmWare (CFW) that is region free and will play all unsigned titles. It will just take you back to the Wii U system menu but you'll know you're inside a CFW if your system version says "99.99.99".
  • The default behavior of haxchi (when you launch it without pressing any button on your gamepad) is set to launch the Homebrew launcher elf file from your SD card, looking as if haxchi WAS the homebrew launcher, but it's only a multi-purpose tool. Please make certain you have the files needed before trying to launch the homebrew it points to.

Feel free to change any of these values around and play with them. You can use HaxChi to boot any elf you want.
It's even recommended to swap the b and default value like this :
You'll have haxchi default behavior set to "patch the system menu to CFW". After launching haxchi without pressing any button, it will return right away to the WiiU menu allowing you to launch any unsigned title (installed games, installed homebrew), or launch Haxchi again but this time keeping the B button pressed to access the homebrew launcher in "CFW mode", allowing you to use homebrew requiring removed signature check (installing DLC with WUP installer for example).

You are not limited to a, b, and default. you can use all the button on your gamepad (x, y, up, down, etc.)

The key thing to remember is that if you change the config file you must re-install HaxChi over the top of the selected NDS game for the changes to apply.
Note: The letters in the config.txt file must be lowercase.

If you want "up" to go to WUP installer:

You can now use HaxChi on your system menu to launch HBL or really anything else that you want. If you want to install non legit titles (like HBL channel or WUP Installer GX2 channel) you will need to first launch haxchi's "sysmenu" to get into CFW.

Once you have haxchi installed on a legit NDS game you bought from eshop, you can now even install additional non legit NDS VC titles and make several HaxChi's icon on your system menu.
Just be careful to NEVER replace your legit bought NDS game where you installed your initial haxchi with a non legit NDS game. NEVER use WUP installer to reinstall your NDS game, or you'll lose haxchi.

Now that you understand how hachi is working, you know you will need to run the haxchi's "sysmenu" option once after every reboot of the console before launching non legit channels.

To prevent you from having to launch haxchi once after every console reboot, you can setup your HaxChi to autoboot to system menu with patches : Coldboot haxchi (CBHC). Read about this in step 5 on the main guide.

If for whatever reason you or someone else ends up bricking your Wii U in the future, then you will need a full backup to repair your console. These steps explain how to get that sysNAND backup safely stored on your PC so you won't have to worry if you need to perform a repair.
  • Make sure that your SD card has enough room to fit your whole sysNAND backup. If you have a 32GB Wii U then you'll need that much free space on your SD. Since not all SD cards are always the exact size they advertise I recommend using at least one size bigger. For example, I have a 32gb Wii U so I will need 64GB SD or bigger to dump my nand.
  • I mentioned in the "what you'll need" section at the start of this guide that you don't necessarily have to backup your entire mlc. This is because the mlc backup is basically all that you see in your sysnand. Your system menu, all your games etc are contained in mlc and as of right now it hasn't proved useful in unbricking or HaxChi injecting in latest firmware. This does NOT mean that down the road you won't need it. That's why I suggested getting everything. If you don't have a big enough SD at least get otp.bin (used in CBHC unbricking) and seeprom (used for injecting HaxChi if you accidentally updated to 5.5.3 and didn't have HaxChi installed before you updated)
  1. Download Wii U Nand Dumper (latest is "Wii U NAND Dumper v0.3")
  2. Copy the extracted files to the root of your SD card using your computer overwriting and merging when prompted
  3. Launch HomeBrew Launcher by using HaxChi or BrowserHax
  4. Launch Wii U Nand Dumper from HBL (it doesn't have an icon. Just white on black text)
  5. Change all options to "yes"
  6. Press A to start dumping. The screen will go white and then you will see Wii U logo on the screen and nand backup process on the GamePad
  7. I have a 32GB Black Wii U and the total folder size with all files dumped inside is 29.1GB
  8. For my 32GB Wii U it took roughly 3.5 hours to fully dump to my SD
  9. Copy the backed up files on your SD over to your computer. You can find the files here: SD:\otp.bin (and other bin files)
Keep your nand tools and nand backup somewhere safe in case you mess something up and need to do a nand restore using a hardmod

If you do need to perform a sysNAND repair, you will need to purchase a Teensy++ 2.0 and follow the steps in this thread to repair.

Explaining SLC, SLCMTTP, OTP, SEEPROM and MLC and importance of OTP

SLC - Includes system configuration such as system.xml, sysmenu.xml and other critical parts of the Wii U (such as boot1)

SLCMTTP - vWii IOS'es, Save files and vWii stuff is stored there. Needed in-case if you screw up vWii to that state that even FTPiiU will not help.

MLC - Includes System Apps such as Wii U Menu, System Settings, Wii U Browser etc. It also includes your installed games, saves and (partial, most of it is stored in SLC) Wii U configuration. I really suggest dumping it in-case if your Wii U menu refuses to work one day. [Keep in mind: Wii U menu is needed to boot Wii U]

OTP - [Quote from WiiUBrew] "The One Time Programmable memory is programmed sometime during the factory process and can never be changed afterwards. The Wii U's OTP is much larger than the Wii's (1KB split across 8 banks of 128 bytes each) and contains an assortment of read-only data, including the console's encryption/decryption keys."
In other words, you need it to decrypt SLC, SLCMTTP and MLC. Keep it mind, you can't decrypt boot1 with it.

SEEPROM - Serial EEPROM, Includes console information, boot parameters and other stuff. It includes some calls to SLC so i guess it might come in-handy when fixing your Wii U.

There are many different methods for loading games to internal memory, SD card, and or USB. I currently recommend setting up HaxChi, then CBHC and then using WUP Installer method to install and run anything.
  • SD Card = Loadiine GX2
  • Internal memory = WUP Installer Method, redNAND, or sigpatched sysNAND (CFW)
  • USB = WUP Installer Method, redNAND, or sigpatched sysNAND (CFW), Loadiine GX2 using latest Mocha
Pros and cons:
  • Loadiine GX2: Great menu system for games. Will play almost every game with updates and DLC and injected VC titles. Cons include things like it taking a few extra taps to get into. It will not allow online play and sometimes games run slow.
  • WUP Installer Method (formally known as "The Brazilian Method"): Games can be played from the Wii U main menu. Allows for online play. Games can be installed on either internal memory or USB. Free DLC is NOT available with this method on unpatched sysNAND but DLC that you've paid for works just fine. VC games are NOT installable with this method unless you use a CFW with sigpatches (CBHC, Haxchi, or redNAND)
WUP Installer Method (Formally called "Brazilian Method")
With WUP Installer Method if you install a game from your region you will not need any CFW to play. If you download unpurchased DLC or custom channels then you'll need to first install any CFW before using WUP Installer GX2 to install then play.

The reason that this was called the "Brazilian Method" is because it was some users in Brazil that discovered this. This is the most popular loading method for games and other titles right now as it puts icons in the main Wii U menu and plays exactly like disc game.

Here's how it works.

Every title downloaded and installed through the eshop are locked to the nintendo ID used to purchase and download the item. This prevents users from installing titles that they purchase on friends and families Wii U. They obviously cannot do this with games purchased at the store on disc which is why you can buy a game at Wal Mart and then take it to your friends house and play. What these Brazilian users discovered is that they can use homebrew to extract the ticket from the disc (the one that works on every Wii U) and inject it to a game downloaded from the Nintendo update servers (eshop).

These tickets that have been extracted from the discs have been uploaded to various sites. The process is a nutshell is to use a PC app to download the eshop title (which will be auto patched with the disc ticket with most PC apps) and then use WUP Installer to install that title to the internal memory or USB.

This method will work on an unpatched Wii U with no custom firmware running. But only for the initial game and update. If you want to install DLC that you didn't buy then you need to be running a custom firmware (CBHC, Haxchi or redNAND)

That's basically it, see below for specific instructions.
Prerequisites: You will need to have a Wii U formatted USB Hard Drive. A Fat32 hard drive will not work.
  1. Visit this link on your PC and download WUP Installer GX2 elf version (will need to be launched from HBL).
  2. Place your Wii U SD card and extract the contents of the zip to the root of your SD card overwriting and merging when prompted.
  3. Use a PC app to download a title from the eshop. I recommend Wii U USB Helper. There are many good ones.
  4. Copy the title that you downloaded to a folder on the root of your SD card called "install".
  5. The file structure needs to look like this:
    • SD:\install\(game name)\(buncha files)
    • example: SD:\install\New SUPER MARIO BROS. U [0005000010101E00]\
  6. Launch HomeBrew Launcher through HaxChi or BrowserHax.
  7. Select WUP Installer GX2 and launch.
  8. Install your title to sysnand (internal memory) or USB.
  9. Play your game.

Loadiine GX2

Loadiine is an older method for loading games from your SD card or USB. I've already listed the pros and cons above in Step 2 so I'm just going to list the steps here.

  1. Place your SD card in your computer and visit this link to download the latest loadiine zip.
  2. You may need to turn off the advanced setting in chrome "protect you and your device from dangerous sites" and temporarily turn off your antivirus to download this version of loadiine.
  3. Extract the zip
  4. Create a folder on your SD card called "Loadiine GX2" inside of your wiiu/apps folder. So the SD should look like this: SD:\wiiu\apps\Loadiine GX2
  5. Copy the three files from the zip into the new folder on the SD (icon.png, loadiine_gx2.elf, meta.xml). Ignore the "www" folder.
  6. Put your SD card back in your Wii U.
  7. Use any method to get into HomeBrew Launcher that you want.
  8. Select Loadiine GX2 and then Load.

Custom Firmware's (CFW)
  • Sigpatched sysNAND CFW (HaxChi or CBHC): With this CFW you can run anything that you can run in redNAND. There are no signature checks so you can install custom channels like HBL, WUP Installer GX2, etc. You can also install all DLC and VC titles. Sigpatched sysNAND also gives you region free patches. Cons are just like running any non emulated CFW on any console, if you start messing with system files you run the risk of brick. If you want to develop new homebrew apps you should be using redNAND as there is no brick risk.
  • Mocha CFW: A good option if you dont want to buy a DS game for HaxChi while on 5.5.1 and you dont mind a few extra clicks to play your non legit titles (Homebrew channels and DLC) . I dont recommend setting up CBHC with Mocha like other guides. This has been known to cause corruption issues. Mocha custom firmware is just like sigpatched sysNAND except that you don't need HaxChi to run it. Its basically for people who want to run a sigpatched sysnand but cant/won't buy a DS game. It requires you to use the Wii U browser to run everytime you want to play a game that doesnt have a valid ticket. You can launch it from HBL or you can launch it straight from the browser. Mocha also adds the ability to run loadiine games from USB fat32.
  • redNAND CFW: Mainly for developers or people that want to play around with system hacking without risk of bricking. I dont recommend this for the common gamer. Region free as well. When using WUP Installer method and redNAND you get all the benefits of sysgpatched sysNAND but you can also install really anything that comes out without the fear of bricking your Wii U. The sysConfig tool is great and much easier to install titles than the WUP installer (think of the FBI app on the 3ds). The biggest con is that that it takes a few extra steps to boot into redNAND on each boot.
Updated 3-15-17: Many users have reported corruption with CBHC + Mocha and Rednand or CBHC + Mocha + Rednand. I still recommend HaxChi CFW alone, Mocha alone, or CBHC with HaxChi for this reason

How to install cfw with sigpatches and region free
There are many ways to launch a sigpatched sysNAND CFW. I recommend setting up CBHC to autoboot HaxChi sigpatched sysNAND. I will describe all three CFW's here so you can choose for yourself. Use the descriptions above for making your choice. You can achieve sigpatched sysNAND by using Mocha, redNAND or HaxChi by itself.
  1. Follow the intrustions in Step 2 to install HaxChi
  2. Setup HaxChi to autoboot to system menu by altering the file in the folder SD:\HaxChi\config.txt. Change the values to look like step 3 below.
  3. a=fw.img
  4. re-install HaxChi from HBL over the top of your HaxChi DS title
  5. Now when you launch HaxChi you are in sigpatched sysNAND
  1. Download Mocha by visiting the OP here.
  2. Copy the needed files to SD and then launch Mocha using the CFW launcher in HBL or by visiting my online page here.
  3. You can also use HaxChi to autoboot Mocha but the author doesn't recommend it. Apparently it is very slow option
CBHC stands for Cold Boot HaxChi. This is the preferred method for auto-booting into a sigpatched sysNAND.

You need to be aware of potential brick risks of using CBHC. CBHC alters a system file to auto boot your wii to the HaxChi install. Then you can set up HaxChi to autoboot anything (I recommend system menu because you will be sigpatched and region free) Because it requires HaxChi to autoboot the Wii U if you somehow delete the HaxChi where you install CBHC you will perma-brick your Wii U. For this reason CBHC prevents you from moving your HaxChi to USB or deleting it but it will not prevent you from formatting your Wii U. If you format your Wii U without first removing CBHC then the Wii U will try to boot to a non-existant HaxChi with no way to recover. Good bye Wii U.

If you read the brick report here, you will notice that all of the issues are user error.
  1. First make sure that you have a working legit HaxChi install (Step 2.)
  2. Next visit this link and download the latest version of CBHC (latest right now is "")
  3. Unplug all USB! Very important step!
  4. Put you SD card in your computer if it's not already there
  5. Extract the zip file and copy entire contents to the ROOT of your SD. It should look like this:

  • SD:\chbc\...
  • SD:\wiiu\apps\cbhc\...
6. Put your SD card back in your Wii U
7. Launch HomeBrew Launcher using HaxChi, HBL Channel or BrowserHax
8. Select CBHC and then click Load
9. Make sure that the eshop DS game that you purchased when you install HaxChi is listed below. DO NOT SELECT A DS GAME THAT YOU DOWNLOADED USING ANY OTHER METHOD BUT ESHOP! You must use the exact game that you bought for HaxChi. If you choose a different one you will brick your Wii U.
10. Press A to install and then press A again to perform the install.
11. You should now notice that your HaxChi logo has changed to a red triangle. Do not try and use this HaxChi anymore. It's now part of CBHC and messing with it will brick your Wii U. I recommend moving the icon over to the far right of your screen and even hiding it in a folder
12. Reboot your Wii U.
13. Notice the gamepad on boot. You will get the CBHC menu. You can get to this menu any time in the future by tapping "home" once when you boot the Wii U and you see the CBHC text on the gamepad.
14. Change the last section so it says "Autoboot: System Menu"
15. Select "Boot System Menu" at the top. Your CBHC is now setup. Reboot to test.

On the next reboot you will see the text on the gamepad screen autobooting into a sigpatched sysNAND

Now you can use the WUP Installer method to install any title and DLC.
CBHC and HaxChi are now one in the same. Don't try and update or remove HaxChi. It will break CBHC. If you want to update HaxChi you will first need to uninstall CBHC. Then you can uninstall HaxChi and start over with the install steps for HaxChi then CBHC.

Let me give you a few tips to avoid bricks. I want you to read this part which is why it's in red. I'm not trying to scare you. Just prepare you. You won't brick if follow these tips.

  1. Do not delete the NNID that you used when you first purchased your DS game for HaxChi. This will break HaxChi and in turn CBHC won't know how to boot your system. You'll be bricked and you'll need to buy a teensy++ and get to soldering.
  2. Move your HaxChi game to a folder on the far right of your system menu. Create a folder and put it in there. That way nobody accidentally deletes it.
  3. Once you have installed CBHC it will change the HaxChi icon to "DO NOT TOUCH". It says this for a reason. DO NOT install HaxChi over the top of itself unless you first uninstall CBHC.
  4. DO NOT download the very same DS game using any of the NUS downloaders that you purchased for HaxChi. For example, if you purchase the Kirby DS game for HaxChi, do not then download Kirby DS game using Wii U USB Helper and install it anywhere on your Wii U (SD or USB). This can confuse CBHC and cause major issues.
  5. DO NOT download a DS game from NUS and use it for CBHC +HaxChi. This is a sure perma-brick. You MUST buy the game from eshop.
  6. Do not format your Wii U without first uninstalling CBHC. You'll perma-brick

Okay that's a lot of terrifying statements. I'm 40 years old and have 5 kids at home that play my Wii U. They push power button and then tap the game they want to play. Done. As long as they don't format the Wii U then I'm good (why would they do that anyway?)

Here are some things that you can do now that you are running a custom firmware

Install and play any titles using WUP Installer Method

Although you don't need to be inside of CFW for WUP Installer Method to work, I just wanted to mention that WUP Installer Method works on any firmware. Regular sysNAND or CFW. Read Step 4 for more info.
Install and play DLC
  • Follow step 4 (WUP Installer Method) and use Wii U USB Helper to download DLC and install it using the same steps for WUP Installer Method (Brazilian Method)
Install HomeBrew Launcher as a channel
  1. If you don't already have WUP Installer GX2 copied onto your SD card then go back to step 4 and follow WUP Installer Method
  2. Browse to this link on your computer
  3. Download the latest HomeBrew Launcher Channel zip file ("" is current latest)
  4. Extract the contents and copy all the files from the zip to the "install" folder on the root of your SD (create a folder called "install" if you don't already have one)
  5. Put your SD card back into your Wii U and launch HomeBrew Launcher through HaxChi, cbhc at boot, or BrowserHax.
  6. Select WUP Installer GX2 and Load
  7. On the gamepad select the name of your folder "install".
  8. Press the square install button on the bottom right.
  9. Click Yes
  10. Where do you want to install? You can select either Nand or USB. It doesn't matter just make sure if you select USB that you have a Wii U formatted USB HD plugged in using a Y cable or external power.
  11. Click OK when the install is done.
  12. Press the home button when you are back at the main WUP Installer GX2 menu to return to HBL.
  13. Press Home button in HBL to return to Wii U System Menu. (depending on how you got into HBL you may now be in Mii Maker. Just exit Mii Maker)
  14. You now have a HomeBrew Launcher channel. Tap it to test it out. If it doesn't work the first time reboot your Wii U and make sure you are in CFW before you launch HBL channel.
Now you will have an icon for HBL in the system menu. This will only work if you are already operating inside of CFW. If you're not inside of CFW then it will just fail to launch.
Install WUP Installer GX2 as a channel
  1. Browse to this link on your computer
  2. Extract the zip package
  3. Extract the contents of the "wup_installer_gx2" folder to the "install" folder on the root of your SD.
  4. Launch HBL using the channel, CBHC, HaxChi, or BrowserHax.
  5. Launch WUP Installer GX2 (if you installed it in the HBL channel section above)
  6. Install the files that you copied to SD:\install (to USB)
  7. Make sure to install to USB if you have a USB HD plugged in. WUP installer GX2 Channel has a bug that won't allow it to run from sysNAND if you have a USB HD plugged in.
Now you will have an icon for WUP Installer GX2 in the system menu. This will only work if you are already operating inside of CFW. If you're not inside of CFW then it will just fail to launch.

RedNAND is not for the common user. It is a "sandbox" where you can play with hacking system settings or menu hack and other things that can generally mess up your Wii U. You can't play vWii while in redNAND and if you have SD issues you will lose everything that you have installed to NAND while in redNAND.

What is the difference between sysNAND and redNAND?

  • sysNAND is the internal memory on your Wii U. When you first boot up your Wii U and you see the menu with channels and apps, this is your sysnand. Think of it like your computer HD. It is where the main operating system is stored and all your data, games (when not installed on USB) and apps.
  • redNAND is an exact digital copy of your sysNAND only it's stored on your SD card instead of an internal memory chip. This copy process takes place during the install of redNAND..
  • In order to use redNAND you must purchase an SD card that is LARGER than the internal memory on your Wii U.

Why do I want redNAND?
  • Running unsigned games and updates, dlc, and homebrew, a.k.a free games without ticket.
  • Risk free sandbox for development and general tinkering (if you make a mistake, you mess up redNAND not sysNAND and the system will still boot).
  • Faster speeds than Wii U sysNAND if using a fast SD card.
  • Ability to install sysConfig tool, which allows for better title installations and general tinkering.
  • Safe NAND backup and restore, if you brick your redNAND, just restore a backup to your SD card.
OK, I want redNAND. How do I do it?

Since I don't recommend this method for the standard user and this is a noob guide, you're going to have to search the forums for a guide on redNAND.