Vita Custom Firmware for dummies

You just got yourself a new Playstation Vita, and are looking for a Custom Firmware solution? Then bookmark this page, as it will be kept up to date with the latest, greatest, and simplest solutions available.

Although there is currently no “native” CFW solution for the Vita, solutions exist inside the PSP emulator of the Vita, which give you various levels of homebrew/backup access.



If you are lucky enough to own the right game and be on the right firmware (currently 3.01 or less), then Total_Noob’s “CEF TN” or Pro Team’s “ARK” are for you. You can download CEF here, and ARK here. CEF and ARK are basically Custom Firmwares for PSP running in the PSP emulator on the Vita. They offer optimal homebrew compatbility, as well as iso support.

If you can’t run any of those (either because you don’t have the right game, or because you have a recent firmware), an alternative to Custom firmwares is VHBL, assuming you are lucky enough to grab the exploited games when they get announced. VHBL is only a partial solution, as it only allows you to play a subset of PSP homebrews on the Vita.

One drawback is that all these solutions require you to purchase an “exploitable” game on the PSN when it gets announced. We regularly announce names of new exploitable games on this blog, so stay tuned if you didn’t get the games in time. In 2012 alone, 8 such game exploits were released.

  1. LordChicken’s avatar

    question : does the vita have enough power to emulate gamecube/ps2 ?
    i know that you need like 5 times more cpu than the console that you want to emulate, but i was just wondering….

    Reply

    1. Sai’s avatar

      “i know that you need like 5 times more cpu than the console that you want to emulate, but i was just wondering….” Clearly have no understanding of emulation… what makes you think you need 5 times the power… I will post Rosetta as an example which ran PowerPC Bins on X86 hardware… Whilst it wasn’t 100% transparent, it was not dependent on having a CPU 5x more powerful…

      Reply

      1. Chris’s avatar

        He was clearly just asking whether it was possible.

        How did you manage to take every detail of what he was saying as literate?

        In short to the OP, it’s not possible currently and likely won’t ever be.

        Reply

        1. James’s avatar

          Just for educational purposes “literate” is able to read, “literal” means at face value without using context. It is possible that autocorrect was your demise there. Either way I agree with you, OP was not asking the question that Sai answered.

          Reply

      2. Ceras’s avatar

        You’re a dick.

        Reply

    2. Matt’s avatar

      Well I’m not the biggest emulator guy, but if it could run remote play games fine, I think it could run Gamecube games. Might no though, because emulation is a whole other thing.

      Reply

    3. theman’s avatar

      No LordChicken, the vita cannot emulate gc/ps2 games, its about the hardware and seeing if it can, like it has a psp emulator emulate the psp games, but it cant do ps2 or any of that, but you can use a computer to emulate gamecube/ps2

      Reply

      1. Submissus’s avatar

        Actually, it’s not about that – there’s a wide array of Emulators for Android, and Android, as we all know, uses ARM CPUs. So does the Vita. The hardware supports emulation, someone just has to code the application – and that is the tricky part.

        Reply

  2. Pnut’s avatar

    Lick My Nut LordChick, then you will see TRU POWA!

    Reply

  3. Clear_Condom’s avatar

    gooo..bwwaahhh

    Reply

  4. Zech’s avatar

    can someone educate me if the CFW at [link removed by mods] is real or fraud?

    Reply

    1. M’s avatar

      It’s a fraud.

      Reply

      1. wololo’s avatar

        yes ps3cfwfix dot com is 100% scam

        Reply

  5. DeeZaster’s avatar

    Hey all, could you please give me some information as I’ve asked in a couple forums and nobody there seems to give a $ ][-][ ][ '][' any more.

    So my issue is I had v1.61 firmware and waited month or two for any info or replies on if I could get the CFW for PSP side on the vita with this ofw. I then played Persona 4 GOLDEN and it forced me to update to 1.8 to play it. So this is now where I am, v1.8.

    Is there any way atm if I can get the cfw to play my old isos from my psp on this v1.8 firmware or any v1.8+ ofw? I don't know if any games beside UNO which is now obsolete from the playstation store, so is there a physical game I could still buy from walmart or ebgames, ebay etc... to get the CFW installed onto the ViTA? Is there a way without these games too?

    If someone could please give me their advice on the best method to go with (including just updating to 2.12 and waiting for the new game to be announced), then I would be truly grateful and I could most likely help you in return to show my thanks.

    Thanks all,
    DeeZasterous FartZ

    Reply

  6. poof’s avatar

    i just wanna know shuold i buy a ps vita or not, i mean is there is a way to get pirate games like psp? or its impossible??????

    Reply

    1. Submissus’s avatar

      You should buy a Vita either way.
      If you like the machine, support PlayStation by acquiring your games in a legal manner. That way the Vita stays alive.

      Reply

    2. James’s avatar

      If you just want to pirate, why don’t you buy a nice android device and pirate android games?

      Reply

    3. ANDROID’s avatar

      Heres my valued advice, DO NOT BUY A VITA, it will never be hacked like a psp
      and games are very expensive, I had a vita on its release and sold after 6 months at a huge loss, and bought an android tab which i still have and enjoy playing APKS are free to download even paid ones on the net, vita games
      such as the walking dead also available with same quality graphics, so thats it
      save your money for a android tab with a bigger screen or go for the project shield by nvidia..Choice is yours my friend…

      Reply

  7. Dalaxsis’s avatar

    Hey I thought you should know, or maybe if you don’t already know. But I was almost able to get inside the PS VITA by it’s serial port(SSP) as this is apart and what controls the vita’s various integrated circuits, and EEPROM etc.
    If your wondering how I was able to discover this out, well lets just say it was by complete luck. I found that you can communicate with the devices various innerds by using a universal bluetooth adapter, have the ps vita connected directly via usb, and finally enabling it’s serial port ssp
    in the vitas bluetooth services. If you need more info email me at dalaxsis@gmail.com

    Reply

  8. rick’s avatar

    i need someon`s help i have 2.1.2 psp vita updat but dont works with emulators and jailbreaking things here is my skype :rick281194

    Reply

  9. NotBuyingSony’s avatar

    Need video play on Total_Noob’s “CEF TN”, but at least music playing works. Video is #1 priority, #2 is music. My 2 cents only.

    Reply

  10. N00B’s avatar

    Im a noob, can I use the USB mode in the PSP XMB of TN CEF? So I can easily put stuff in the PSP to play (Like my backed up games and emulators?)

    Reply

    1. 1998adam8991’s avatar

      I’m not sure, I used to run the 1.81 Urbanix TN-A exploit and then I updated, so I didn’t get a chance to run TN-V and its PSP XMB emulator, but I think you’ll still have to prepare those ZIP files, I’m not sure.

      Reply

  11. My friend is gay’s avatar

    I bitches my friends gives you a free blowjob if you do a cfw for the 2.12

    Reply

  12. WTFWONG’s avatar

    I have 1.80 PSV version.
    What should i do now?
    Is it impossible to buy the exploitable games from PSN without upgrading?

    Reply

  13. Matthew Concepcion’s avatar

    how to run the exploit of urbanix i cant even get any psp games yet on my vita

    Reply

  14. JEFRY’s avatar

    Can someone make an easy toturial how to play psp iso/cso on ps vita clearly, there’s to many but i don’t know with is the better.

    Reply

    1. JEFRY’s avatar

      CORRECtiON!!! -there’s to many but i don’t know which one is the better~

      Reply

      1. dmaskell92’s avatar

        “there’s too many”. Good job webster.

        Reply

  15. nigth rider’s avatar

    hey guys i wonted to say i find a new way to hack your ps vita you know that we still have accece to are ps vita mamory card just get a psp adapter so it can convert to a psp memory card there for you can accece your vita data on to a pc whit a mamory card reder so you can open your vita data like that and yea so now only what you can do is make a homebrew 2.61 hack again to play iso cso ect and hope to see pro b to come out agqin for vita plz send me a email whit info devilskeess@hotmail

    Reply

    1. JEFRY’s avatar

      Please fix ur english~

      Reply

      1. aaaarg’s avatar

        Because “… which one is the better” is English?

        Reply

  16. simon’s avatar

    where i can get urbanix exploit, i followed the procedure how to put vhbl but it doesnt work.

    Reply

  17. simon’s avatar

    i have psvita ver. 2.61 i want to play some psp games, what should i do?

    Reply

  18. Josh’s avatar

    I am a noob at this custom firmware stuff. all i want to know is how to emulate psone game for free kinda like ePSXe for pc. i found nothing on the internet so far but forums where people argue off track and against each other. cmon guys help-a-fella mod his vita. hell, how about a step by step so i cant fuck this up. secondly, wheres the ps2 emulator? Tekken series is all im worried about. help me ISO tekkens 3-5. pwease?????!!!!!!

    Reply

    1. wololo’s avatar

      There’s no ps2 emulator for the vita yet. For your PS1 games, the latest and greatest hack to do that was available on firmwares 2.02 and below, and it wouldn’t let you play PS1 games with sound, which made the experience quite limited. But the best way to ensure you’ll have it when it’s released is to follow this site daily, in particular news about TN-V and Ninja releases. Exploits on the vita are rare and easily patched, you typically have a window of a few days to get the exploit in time. Check: http://wololo.net/talk/viewtopic.php?f=53&t=11307

      Reply

  19. Goemon12’s avatar

    Hi I just wanted to ask a question regarding my PSP vita profile as I have firmware 3.00 on my main PSP now what im wondering is if I was to purchase a new PSP vita but use the same profile i am currently using on my psp wit firmare 3.00 would it automatically update my new psp vita to 3.00 if I wanted to download my already purchased games, I would be really grateful if someone could answer this thank you

    Reply

  20. Goemon12’s avatar

    As i really wish to play my original PSP backups on my vita I have open-CMA active but on the off chance I can use my original account from my other PSP Vita I don’t know if you would recommend updating too 2.61 to use with field runners which seems readily available at the store or another alternative as I don’t want too waste 120 pounds on another Vita just to mess up the process thanks again

    Reply

  21. trrsmgl’s avatar

    Question….im still on 2.12 running tnv2 I thibk I cant remeber but anyways can I still play newer games without being required to update I havent tried yet due to fear of losing cfw

    Reply

  22. Lawlcrackas’s avatar

    Okay help me understand.. so when a CFW becomes available he will announce a game to buy so we can do the exploit and then sony will patch it soon. That means we cant hack the vita now is that the only way we can hack it? I see some guides here but arent they already patched? even if you have 2.12 or 1.8?

    Reply

  23. Thanh Duong’s avatar

    when you have a hack for ps vita 3.00 ??? please help me !!!

    Reply

  24. fate1122@yahoo.com’s avatar

    So im new too all this but once i buy the game and im on fw 301, will i still be able to play psp games? is there instructions on how too do it?

    Reply

  25. Rick’s avatar

    wololo..
    sorry..
    can you help me??
    i wanna know..
    so..CFW like TN-V1,2,3,and 4..can play PSP ISO game??

    Thanks :D

    Reply

  26. bob’s avatar

    I’m not sure I understand all of this right so I’ll just ask what I need to know.

    Can you still use the CEF or ARK to play pirated PSP ISOs?
    And can using the PSP emulator running CEF or ARK still play ad hoc with regular PSPs?

    A friend of mine has a PSP1000 and a Vita and I can’t find any hacks or homebrews that will let his 1000 play ad hoc on games that disable it (although I hear they exist) so I’m considering having him use his Vita if it’s possible.

    Reply

  27. pisson’s avatar

    Hello,
    So fresh to play SNES on Large screen of PsVita with TNV6 !! Thank you very much Total Noob !!
    But is there someone to tell me how to return to home menu like on the PSP ?
    Thank you very much and Merry Christmas !!

    Reply

    1. Rah’s avatar

      Hold down the PS button until the Vita toggle thingy screen pops up. Press the ‘x’ and you should see the standard PSP ‘Do you want to quit the game’ screen under it.

      Reply

  28. zenkie’s avatar

    im just a newbie guys..just want to ask how to know if the game is exploit and do i need to buy that game to be able to use CFW? thanks

    Reply

  29. dreizwanzig’s avatar

    Hello!

    Is there any disadvantage if I install the CFW? I mean like if I make an RGH on my xbox, I can not play online and can not go to the live to download contents?
    Is there any disadvantage on PS vita also?
    Because my plan is to have PSN+ subscription and play with PSN+ games and play PSP games with the emulator. Is that possible?

    Reply

    1. inicuo’s avatar

      Since Sony doesnt lunch a new OFW (Official firmware)there are no disadvantages, but once they lunch it, you will have to update in order to keep enjoying PSN

      Reply

  30. bruno’s avatar

    can some one make newbie tutorial for 2.12verssion to run emulators and rooms

    Reply

  31. pkg pavita’s avatar

    hello someone like me can install a desir. psvita PKG without a ps3? bone by pc. Esque have several games. PKG and install but I do not know how. SOMEONE HELP ME?

    hola alguien me puede desir como instalo un .PKG en una psvita sin tener ps3 ? osea mediante pc. Esque tengo varios juegos .PKG y los quiero instalar pero no se como. ALGUIEN ME AYUDA?

    Reply

    1. inicuo’s avatar

      NO HAY SOPORTE PARA PKG, es decir, los juegos que NO son en ISO o en CSO NO PUEDEN reproducirse.

      Reply

  32. Shinji’s avatar

    Are games that are pulled out but then brought back still exploitable?

    Reply

    1. neo48’s avatar

      They are exploitable as long as you are on the firmware for which they were announced. However if you update to the latest firmware, then you’re out of luck and you’ll have to wait for the next exploit.

      Reply

      1. tiger’s avatar

        im kinda confused about something the latest ps vita ofw is 3.01 and the newest exploit can use 3.01 and under so why does it sound bad for people who have the newest ofw?

        Reply

  33. jaffopunx80’s avatar

    hi wololo i’m waiting for the next eploitable game coming out but with a ps3 can i wait for the next firmware upgrade and then download the old kingOP or Megamix with the ps3 and pass it to the vita?am i right??or i misunderstand and isn’t possible?thx for your great work u’r the best!!!!

    Reply

    1. jaffopunx80’s avatar

      obviously i don’t upgrade the vita before buy the exploitable game

      Reply

  34. sssss’s avatar

    Do I have to create a U.S. PSN account in preparation for the next exploit? I live in Canada, and I didn’t realize that the Canadian PSN store is fundamentally different from the U.S. PSN store until after I created my ‘main’ PSN account (the one I have linked to my sole memory card).

    Anyway, I only have one memory card so if I want the next exploitable game, whenever it becomes available, I’ll have to create a U.S. PSN account in order to access the game, which will most likely NOT be available in the Canadian PSN store, or I wouldn’t count on it, at least. A good deal of Vita/PSP titles are exclusive to the U.S. store because of various legal issues (for example, NIS America and Black Rock Shooter).

    I may need to make use of my PS3–download the exploitable game on the PS3 and then transfer it to my Vita from there. But if I use this method, I’ll have to format my memory card, because I’m guessing that in order to put the game on my Vita, I’ll need to be logged into the same PSN account on both the PS3 and the Vita in order to use Content Manager…

    Or just format the PSV and redo everything (around the U.S. account) so that I never need to use my Canadian account again. Or just buy another memory card to use as a designated ‘U.S.’ card. I really don’t want to have to do that, though. Then again, I really could use a nice 32-64 GB card.

    Reply

  35. eddie’s avatar

    Is it possible to use a downloaded psp iso converted to a pkg for cfw ps3 and then transfer it to the vita?

    Reply

  36. tiger’s avatar

    i just got a ps vita so ill be back here to look for the latest game exploit so please list something new if it comes up

    Reply

  37. matt’s avatar

    i dont understand you have to buy a exploitable game for install CFW????

    like how does this work???? i just want to install the CFW on My vita (running 3.01 OFW) install the PSP emulator and download and install the PSP Back-ups.

    can someone lend me tips of advice or clarification??? i dont realy understand the this article isnt that through for a CFW NOOB. if anyone want to help feel free to email at matthro555@shaw.ca

    Reply

  38. motherfuck’s avatar

    how to download unity web player on ps vita or download gta 4 and minecraft plz tel me i realt wont to know

    Reply

  39. Axello’s avatar

    Hi,
    I would like to know if the PSN download is mandatory or if I can just by the game (disk version of the game) in a shop if the hard version exists.
    Thanks,
    Axello

    Reply

  40. Raih4x0r’s avatar

    Can I use TN-V to play psp games that I downloaded from PSN or does it have to be an ISO/CSO?

    Reply

  41. nick’s avatar

    android phone or tablet run snes gba sega ps1 ps2 and using wireless controller like the wiimotes and wiitroller works very well had over 3000 games on my shitty phone.still have none on vita ive gotten as far as the homebrews saved on my mem stick but cant get hbl to work dont understand the exploit thing why not hack it the right way and make a crack so the vita just believes your starting a system addon like a calender or clock is it that hard.damn i remember playing ps2 on windows 95

    Reply

  42. Carlzon’s avatar

    I just bought new PS Vita last week and i want to play games by ISO. Can anyone help me to the First step in doing stuff? I mean the first step in order to play iso on my New PS Vita? Please….

    Reply

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