Hack PSVita and PSTV FW 3.69/3.70 using Trinity Exploit to run Homebrew

Hack PSVita
Vita

Sony has officially stopped support for PSVita, an ambitious handheld console that deserved better. It seems that the only content keeps it alive are Japanese RPG titles and the console being an excellent device for emulation and hacking. If you’re on the fence about the emulation and hacking bit, here’s how you can hack PSVita as the exploit for the latest firmware is now available as well.

Hack PSVita and PSTV FW 3.69/3.70

The Trinity exploit is the last exploit that is available to hack the PSVita and PSTV, even if those are on the latest firmware. This exploit allows you to run PSP games, plugins and homebrew on your PSVita.

We will walk you through all the steps and phases of this method as it slightly more complex and requires multiple readings of the steps.

Preinstall Requirements and Details

Here’s everything you need to know before you choose to install these exploits to use your device to it’s fullest capabilities

  • This exploit runs in the PSVita’s ePSP emulator which means you need some PSP content on your device, which could be a game, demo or mini.
  • Trinity needs to be applied every time you perform a cold reboot because FW 3.67+ don’t support HENkaku Enso.
  • It works on all PSVita models including PHAT, Slim, and PSTV, though you’ll need a memory card on the PHAT model since it doesn’t have internal storage that is accessible by the user.
  • You can run the native PSVita homebrew through it since this isn’t exactly a traditional hack.
  • Some plugins will not work with the exploit initially but with time support will be added for newer firmware.

Preparation

Now that you know the basic requirements for the exploit to be installed, here’s what you need to start the process

Firmware 3.69 Options

In case you’re on Firmware 3.69, you can opt for the following things

  1. Update to 3.7 by going to Settings > System Updates
  2. Head over to Settings > Network > Wi-Fi Settings > Your access point > Advanced Settings and set DNS Settings to Manual and Primary DNS to 212.47.229.76

Setting up PSN Account

With that out of the way, you can now move forward to setting up your PSN account

Register a PSN account from the following link, and make sure not to have more than 3 accounts on a single device

Installing a PSP Game/Mini/Demo

Download either a game or a demo and install it on your device. Make sure it’s a demo for a PSP game, and not PSVita or PS Classic.

Verify your PSP Game/Mini/Demo

To verify that you have installed a correct game, follow the steps below

  • Hold the PS button on your device
  • After a few seconds, a quick menu will appear with a Settings option
  • Here you can set the game’s bilinear filter and various other settings
  • If this option is not there, you didn’t download the correct game

How to Install the Trinity Exploit and hack PSVita

This isn’t exactly as straightforward as most exploits are so we urge you to make backups as you proceed.

  1. Download and install qcma and psvimgtools.
  2. Start qcma and within the qcma settings set the option Use this version for updates to FW 0.00 (Always up-to-date)to spoof the System Software check.
  3. Launch Content Manager on your PS Vita and connect it to your computer, where you then need to select PS Vita System -> PC, and after that you select Applications. Finally select PSP™/Other and click on the game that you want to turn into the Trinity exploit. If you see an error message about System Software, you should simply reboot your device to solve it (if this doesn’t solve, then put your device into airplane mode and reboot). If this does still not work, then alternatively set DNS to 212.47.229.76 to block updates.
  4. Transfer the game over to your computer by clicking on Copy on your PS Vita. After copying, you go to the folder /Documents/PS Vita/PGAME/xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx/YYYYZZZZZ on your computer, where xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx is some string corresponding to your account ID and YYYYZZZZZ is the title id of the game that you’ve just copied over. You can look at the image at YYYYZZZZZ/sce_sys/icon0.png to verify that it is indeed your chosen game. Furthermore, the YYYYZZZZZfolder should contain these folders: gamelicense and sce_sys.
  5. Before you attempt to modify the backup, you should make a copy of it. Just copy YYYYZZZZZ somewhere else, such that if you fail to follow the instructions, you can copy it back and retry.
  6. Insert the xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx string here. If the AID is valid, it will yield a key that you can now use to decrypt/re-encrypt your game.
  7. Decrypt the game back up by executing the following command in your command line/terminal (make sure you’re in the right working directory. On Windows, you can open the terminal in the current working directory by typing in cmd in the path bar of the file explorer. Also, if you haven’t installed psvimgtools yet, then just place them in the YYYYZZZZZ folder):
    psvimg-extract -K YOUR_KEY game/game.psvimg game_dec
    

    If done correctly, you should see an output like this:

    creating file ux0:pspemu/temp/game/PSP/GAME/YYYYZZZZZ/EBOOT.PBP (x bytes)...
    creating file ux0:pspemu/temp/game/PSP/GAME/YYYYZZZZZ/__sce_ebootpbp (x bytes)... 
    all done.
    
  8. Download Trinity and copy the PBOOT.PBP file to game_dec/ux0_pspemu_temp_game_PSP_GAME_YYYYZZZZZ/PBOOT.PBP (the files EBOOT.PBP__sce_ebootpbp and VITA_PATH.txt should exist in this folder). If PBOOT.PBP does already exist there, just overwrite it.
  9. Now re-encrypt the backup similar to above by typing this in your command line/terminal:
    psvimg-create -n game -K YOUR_KEY game_dec game
    

    If done correctly, you should see an output like this:

    adding files for ux0:pspemu/temp/game/PSP/GAME/YYYYZZZZZ
    packing file ux0:pspemu/temp/game/PSP/GAME/YYYYZZZZZ/EBOOT.PBP (x bytes)...
    packing file ux0:pspemu/temp/game/PSP/GAME/YYYYZZZZZ/PBOOT.PBP (x bytes)...
    packing file ux0:pspemu/temp/game/PSP/GAME/YYYYZZZZZ/__sce_ebootpbp (x bytes)...
    created game/game.psvimg (size: x, content size: x)
    created game/game.psvmd
    
  10. Remove the game_dec folder (and PSVimg tools if copied here) and select Refresh database in qcma settings.
  11. Now you need to copy back the modified backup to your PS Vita: Launch Content Manager on your PS Vita and connect it to your computer (if it’s already open, just go back to the first menu), where you then need to select PC -> PS Vita System, and after that you select Applications. Finally select PSP™/Other and click on the modified game. Perform the copy operation and exit Content Manager.
  12. In the live area, the game should now have a different icon and should now be called Trinity (eventually you have to rebuild the database in recovery mode to make the bubble change its look). If not, please re-read the instructions more carefully and begin from fresh.
  13. Turn on Wi-Fi, then reboot your device and straightly launch Trinity. Do not do anything else, otherwise, the exploit will be less reliable. It is very important that you do not have any running downloads in the background.
  14. Enjoy the exploitation process and wait until it launches the Construct. If the exploit fails, simply rerun Trinity.
  15. Within the Construct, select Download VitaShell, then Install HENkaku and finally Exit.
  16. Congratulations, your device is now able to run homebrews. It is highly suggested that you downgrade your device to either firmware 3.60 or 3.65/3.67/3.68 using modoru. On 3.60, you can use HENkaku and on 3.65/3.67/3.68 you can use h-encore. If you don’t downgrade your device now, you may lose the ability to launch Trinity later and therefore not be able to hack your device anymore.

All credits go to the author of the exploit TheFlow and none of this could’ve been achieved without him and the community.

If you have any questions you can refer to the FAQ here.

PSVita and Sony’s Treatment of its Device

PSVita is one of the best pieces of handheld hardware for gamers and it’s been supported very poorly by Sony and it’s run didn’t last too long. It’s a small library of first-party games and lack of interest by other developers resulted in being a disappointment overall.

Hack PSVita

However, due to its technical specifications, it’s an absolutely excellent device for homebrew users, hackers and people that want to develop plugins and utilities for it.

Hack PSVita

The PS TV or the non-handheld variant of the PSVita follows the same legacy and treatment as it shares the same content, but with the way the community has been able to use these devices to their best is remarkable.

What do you think about the new exploit to hack PSVita? Are you going to give it a shot? Let us know in the comments below and share your thoughts.

 

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