What Would Matt Do

I reckon I aim to play some games.

Wii update 4.2 may brick your console. Is it worth it?

with 14 comments


From /. games:

Now, Nintendo has pushed a boot2 update to all Wii users, and the results are what was expected: users are reporting bricks after installing 4.2 on unmodified consoles. Nintendo is currently attempting to censor posts and remove references to homebrew. It is worth noting that the new boot2 does not attempt to block anything or offer any additional protection or functionality. Its sole purpose is to simply replace current versions which may or may not have been modified with BootMii. Another interesting tidbit is that Nintendo is not believed to have any method to repair this kind of brick at a factory, short of replacing the entire motherboard."

So in their haste to combat those .01% Wii users (my guesstimate of homebrew users), they are releasing code that could brick a Wii AND they may not have anyway other than sending in the system to get it fixed?


Why is it all right for regular users to suffer to combat a very small percentage of the users that do things with their console that Nintendo doesn’t approve of? We all know, even Nintendo knows, that you can’t stop piracy/homebrew/etc with mere software updates. The pirates are crafty and will just release a new version of their software. So why does Nintendo spend so much time working against them, at the expense of their bigger customer base?

I don’t know. I hope Nintendo knows. Because this is irresponsible at best.


What Would Matt Do: Wonder why Nintendo is so headstrong to get pirates when they represent such a small part of their console owners… I mean, I know companies don’t like it when people steal their shit. That’s a given. But is this course worth it? What next, Nintendo will start releasing updates that make your promise you’re not a pirate before you use console? Because that’s about how effective these updates are, except regular paying customers are also being hit with the flack.

Written by Matt

October 1st, 2009 at 11:46 am

14 Responses to 'Wii update 4.2 may brick your console. Is it worth it?'

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  1. I bit the bullet and installed the 4.2 update. It did take a while to get started, and it took a long time to finish, too. I don’t know how long (I didn’t time it) but it took long enough that I was starting to get concerned, and every now & then I’d find myself compelled to stare at the progress bar until it advanced a little bit. Phew. Still going. Okay then.

    I think the bricking of unmodded systems probably occurred when people freaked out because the update took several minutes to start, or just took so long to complete, and they foolishly pulled the plug on their system midway through the update. Oops.

    I do agree with your main point though. Given that this update was designed with no purpose other than to take out the people who’ve modified their Wii, it was not only a blatant waste of time, it was bad publicity (yes, there is such a thing).

    Modding a Wii (or any console for that matter) is not an easy process and your average Joe Plumber is not going to do it. The average modder has his finger on the pulse of the warez & modz community so when a patch comes out which is targeting the modders, he knows about it long before Joe Plumber does. So while Joe Plumber starts the anti-modder patch then shuts his Wii down because it seems to be taking too long, the Modders sit tight and wait, and before too long someone in the Modder community comes through with a fix that defeats 4.2, because they’re that damn good.

    Meanwhile, back on the ranch, Joe Plumber and his brethren are staring at their bricked Wiis wondering why they’re not working. Eventually, maybe, they’ll call Nintendo, who’ll repair the damage they’ve done, for free of course, which really means it’s costing Nintendo even more money to fix the problems they caused when they waged and lost a war against the Modders.

    Nope. This patch was not a good idea.

    Capn John

    15 Oct 09 at 1:21 pm

  2. the wii 4.2 update bricked my wii!!!! and i dont even run homebrew!!!!!! no i’ve got no clue why it fucked up! … the update was completed…

    and now my wii wont boot… thank god i could get the game out of the wii


    15 Oct 09 at 10:27 pm

  3. [...] Wii update 4.2 may brick your console. Is it worth it? « What … [...]

  4. Now I’m not saying what kind of Wii I own, other than Nintendo brand, obviously! But were someone so inclined, they’d just keep their stupid wi-fi turned off and never update their Wii. If they had updates they needed to make, they could do it through usb or sd card direct to the memory install. Just saying.

    I feel bad when Wii’s die. I wonder if this has since been resolved?

    Tiffany Martin

    5 Nov 09 at 2:20 pm

  5. Okay. So my kid’s friend did this update on his system, not understanding that it was going to brick his system, which is not modded in any way. I got volunteered, through my son, to sort it out. Here’s what I’m thinking, and please let me know if I’m limping down the wrong path. This firmware is probably on an eeprom type chip that is in a socket or hard soldered straight to the mainboard. Has anyone looked into methods of re-flashing the chip with an eeprom reader/writer?


    29 Nov 09 at 7:41 am

  6. Greetings… has anyone tried the savemii dongle?
    Try to google it and see if works! :)


    16 Dec 09 at 6:36 am

  7. i love my Nintendo wii, i almost use it everyday because i am a video game addict. love the nice features.-;”

    Isaac Gonzalez

    12 May 10 at 12:38 pm



    3 Nov 11 at 5:49 am

  9. Excellent points altogether, you simply received a new reader. What might you suggest in regards to your submit that you made a few days ago? Any sure?

  10. [...] after realizing people were installing software to pirate games on the Wii, released an update that would brick the system upon installation. Microsoft, meanwhile, will merely permanently ban your console from connecting [...]

  11. The homebrew community is much much larger than you want to believe.


    15 Feb 12 at 11:55 am

  12. I had my system bricked and I never modded it in the slightest, I pretty much only used it to play smash bros. When I called nintendo, they appoligized for the inconvenience and said that it was a known problem and they said I would have to pay for the cost of repair. The cost of repair was more than the cost of buying a new system.

    WTF nintendo?

    Johnathan Briggs

    16 Feb 12 at 6:02 am

  13. My Wii died last year (which is pretty sucky for a 5-year old system, given that we have an N64 and a Gamecube and both still work) and when I called Nintendo I found out, as Johnathan Briggs did, that it would cost me almost $100 for the “Nintendo-approved” repair.

    However, Johnathan, it’s interesting that you should mention Super Smash Bros. Brawl (SSBB) because, as you also mentioned, it is a “known issue” and when I generated a repair request through Nintendo’s website, versus calling and talking to a live person, and I selected the problem as being due to SSBB (available through their drop-down menu) I got a repair quote for zero dollars, including free shipping via Fed-Ex.

    The caveat was I needed to send in both my Wii (sans cables) AND the SSBB disc. Which i did because we did have SSBB and the Wii did die while my son was playing it. Oddly enough he had been playing SSBB for almost a year, problem-free, then Bam! Just like that, a dead Wii.

    So I packed up my Wii and sent it off with the SSBB disc and less than 7 days later got my own Wii back, in working conditiong. It was not a refurb, it was identifiable through certain scratches on the case. Yes, I also got back the SSBB disc, although maybe it was a new disc. I also got a new 3-year warranty period in the event that it dies again.

    All for free through their online form by identifying SSBB as the cause of the problem.

    Capn John

    16 Feb 12 at 8:10 am

  14. You will find certainly a couple more details to take into consideration, but thanks for sharing this information.

    DJ hay

    16 Jun 13 at 1:11 am

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