We’ve mentioned hacker YifanLu several times on this blog, being that he is one of the handful of people believed to be in possession of a “native” vita hack (I put “native” in quotes here, as I mean per opposition to a hack in the psp emulator, but I don’t want people to assume he has a hack available in the Vita’s firmware code). Today Yifan Lu released a beta version of his new tool: a full open source alternative to Sony’s Content Manager Assistant for the Vita.
The CMA is a tool divided in two parts: a server running on your ps Vita, and a client running on your computer (or your PS3, as a matter of fact). For those of you who just joined us, there are many reasons to hate Sony’s CMA, from a hacker’s perspective but more importantly from a customer’s perspective (see my article on CMA and privacy concerns ). Also, last time I checked, that tool is not available for Linux, only for Mac and Windows.
Nobody else than Sony can fix the fact that you have to use CMA to do anything with your Vita, but we’ve seen initiatives to lower the pain of using this tool. VirtuousFlame’s “OpenCMA” was one of those, a patch that let the CMA client on windows run without having to be constantly connected to the internet.
Today’s release from YifanLu should not be confused with VF’s OpenCMA above. The “Open” here is to be taken literally, as YifanLu’s OpenCMA is a complete open source implementation of the client side code of CMA. Basically, this tool can completely replace Sony’s client, where VF’s OpenCMA was a patch over the closed source tool from Sony.
More importantly, it is the first compiled version for linux ever, so linux users should finally be able to copy content to and from their Vita! (no thanks to Sony. You can’t begin to imagine how messed up I feel typing that it apparently takes a year and a half between the release of a computer device and the possibility to copy files to it, and that the initiative is not driven by the device’s manufacturer themselves. Feels like a 50 years step back to me)
Additionally, and more interestingly for devs out there, YifanLu also released the sources for libVitaMTP, a library for devs who would for example want to create their own content managers for the Vita. Think iTunes for the Vita, or even if you have lower ambitions it shouldn’t be difficult to come up with something that looks a bit more polished than the official Sony client, which does exactly nothing to help you manage your backups and files.
In theory nothing should prevent this code from being ported to Windows/Mac as well, provided motivated devs look into the sources.
To provide feedback, bug reports, and access the source code, check the github pages here. Also check YifanLu’s original article on his blog, and feel free to drop him a line on the thread he opened on our forum here
We are constantly looking for guest bloggers at wololo.net. If you like to write, and have a strong interest in the console hacking scene, contact me either with a comment here, or in a PM on /talk!