Vita hack: what’s after VHBL?
Many of you have noticed that VHBL is far from being a full vita hack. Not only is it only impacting the PSP emulator, Sony was fast enough to remove Motorstorm Arctic Edge from their store before the hack became mainstream. Many people have asked me if I have other plans for the vita moving forward, and the answer is that, of course, I do.
But readers should actually focus their attention on the work of some other hackers, far more skilled than me. For example, as I was “entertaining” Sony with some Child Play, significant progress was made on reverse engineering the CMA client by Yifan Lu (of Kindle hack fame). His work is paving the way to a truly open source PC client for copying files to and from the vita, which could to some extent allow us to copy files without being constantly connected to the net (in the meantime, Windows users have open CMA)
He’s not the only hacker who started looking into the Vita. It seems Sony managed to unify their portable and home console ecosystems: the Vita seems to be the bridge between the PS3 and the PSP, not only for Sony, but for hackers as well, as we see both the PSP scene and the PS3 scene taking lots of interest in the PS Vita. It seems to me now that every possible vector of attack is being analyzed by several hackers. We all put our attention on the stuff we know of course, this is why our community has been focusing a bit on the PSP emulator, but people like SKFU are looking into the network communications of the Vita, and I’m sure hardware hackers all over the world are hard at work to start being able to read those “proprietary” cards.
A new device is always extremely exciting, for those of you who have never hacked and might be interested, this is the best time to give it a try, when everybody is basically a noob. If some of you are interested, this page gives a few pointers, which, despite being psp specific, might help you getting the basics of “playing” with a device. I’m sure we all try with the techniques we “know”, but most likely, Sony is not repeating their errors from the past.
As far as I’m concerned, I might or might not port VHBL to other PSP game exploits if I have time (either helping people who have an exploit – contact me if you do and need help with HBL -, or working on some of the old game exploits I still have that are lying around), improve the existing VHBL for motorstorm, and/or start digging into actual Vita research.
The reason I’m not sure I will immediately put more effort in VHBL is because Sony will most likely patch the most obvious vulnerabilities of CMA in their next update, making VHBL more or less useless. Of course, let me remind everyone that VHBL is open source, and if you feel like creating your own menu, or want to help improving homebrew compatibility, please feel free to do so!
On a side note, I’m getting reports on a Vita “hack” going by the name of N3rOS4T. This is an obvious fake, which aims at getting money from ads click, and will give you at best a huge waste of time to answer a survey (and give these guys money), and at worst a virus. Spread the word on this one. One good thing is to report their videos as scam on youtube when you stumble upon them.
Some people have contacted me to donate for my past and future work on VHBL. Many thanks to those who already did. If you want to donate for my work, please donate your money to the Red Cross (google for them, they have a website in pretty much every country).
I also want to apologize to the many people who have contacted my in PM, by email, or on youtube: I don’t have the time to reply to everybody, but I do read every message, even (especially ?) when they come from people who disagree with the idea of hacking. For those of you who asked for help about how hacking is done, or sent me suggestions on how to further hack the vita, please feel free to discuss on our forums.