Written by Fanjita Wednesday, 22 August 2007
We told you that we'd be releasing an unbricker for the M33 bricks. But then we got to thinking, maybe that just wouldn't be exciting enough.
Would you like a super special surprise bonus? How about an unbricker for ALL PSPs? Yep, you read that right. We call it "Pandora's Battery".
There's a larger story behind this unbricker, though, and it deserves to be told. It's the culmination of years of behind-the-scenes research and development by some of the top names in PSP hacking, under the name of the Prometheus project. This group of people, from various development teams, was dedicated to developing and releasing PSP hacks and exploits, with the aim of improving the status of PSP homebrew, and making sure that it was kept alive.
For some time this project was highly successful - many releases from Noobz, C+D and others were direct results of this work. The zenith of this success was the development of this unbricker - which required some amazing technical leaps, including:
Reverse engineering of the service (unbrick) mode
Development of a technique to change an ordinary battery into a service mode trigger battery (and back)
Development of custom IPL code along with a technique to sign that code as authentic.
Even more impressive is that all of the above was achieved without any access to the official hardware or software. With careful nurturing, this unbricker and custom IPL was to become the foundation of a whole new homebrew environment.
Unfortunately something happened to shatter the idyll. Somehow, the unbricker was leaked into the wider world before it was ready to be released. Whether this was deliberate, by one of the team members, or accidental via a security breach is still unclear. The fact is that this unbricker appeared on the black market, being sold for huge prices. As far as we know, it is probably very close to the same software that appears in at least some of the 'magic unbricker'/'jigkick' videos.
So, although the time was not right to release this (it would have been wise to wait at least until the PSP Slim release), our hand has been forced. In order to prevent small fortunes being made by leeches, we are giving this unbricker away for free. So - let it be known - if you have paid for an unbricker, then you have been ripped off. I suggest that you take up your grievances with the seller - it should never have been sold. And if you're unhappy about this being released before PSP Slim - then blame whoever it was that leaked or stole it.
It's unclear whether or not this is the end for the Prometheus project - hopefully not, but that is undecided so far. In case it is the end, it is worth a quick roll of honour. In alphabetical order:
Adrahil, Booster, Cswindle, Dark_AleX, Ditlew, Fanjita, Joek2100, Jim, Mathieulh, Nem, Psp250, Skylark, TyRaNiD.
And here are their respective C+D (Create and Destroy) nicknames.
Mathieulh = WiseFellow
Tyranid = bockscar
Fanjita = FullerMonty
Joek = CosmicOverSoul
Dark_Alex = Malyot
Chris = Caretaker
Adrahil = VoidPointer
nem = h1ckeyph0rce
Anyway - make sure to read the readme.txt in this release for how to use it, but in brief it works like this:
You run a program on a homebrew-enabled PSP that will convert a standard PSP battery into a jigkick battery. Note that you can't then use that battery normally - so you should use a spare one.
You run a program to generate the unbricker memory stick image, built from the v1.5 update EBOOT (note that this, and the custom IPL, means the release is completely free of Sony copyright materials).
You run some programs on a PC to install the image to your memory stick.
Now, you have a battery/memory stick pair that works just like the famous jigkick combination (but better) - just insert them into any PSP (even a brick) and the PSP will be reinstalled with the v1.5 firmware. As far as we know, this will continue to work for all future firmwares.