Thou shalt not have unapproved fun on thy Nintendo Switch

Subject: General Tech | July 11, 2018 - 01:40 PM |
Tagged: Nintendo, Nintendo Switch, hack

If you are looking at picking up a Nintendo Swich for the purpose of installing a boot loader so you can play with the NVIDIA Tegra inside you might want to look for a used model.  Nintendo have patched the ROM on new devices to block USB recovery mode overflow errors and coldboot exploits such as Fusée Gelée, preventing you from unapproved entertainment.  Ars Technica offers details on the software versions which will prevent loading your own code, as well as the theory that the new Mariko Tegra may be preventing this at a hardware level in the newest devices.

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"These boot-ROM iPatches are relatively simple for Nintendo to implement in the factory when the system is manufactured, but they are impossible to load onto the tens of millions of Switch units that had already been sold before the exploit was made public."

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Source: Ars Technica

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July 11, 2018 | 02:06 PM - Posted by Isaac Johnson

This is a fix for a serious security flaw (in Nvidia's hardware), but it's being spun as Nintendo being control freaks. I've never understood why Nintendo haters seem to have an extra level of hatred for Nintendo than they do for anyone else. Maybe Nintendo touched them in a bad place. Or maybe they didn't get enough hugs from Nintendo when they were children. I dunno, haters/fanboys in general are ridiculous but it's always seemed the Nintendo haters try to outdo everyone else.

In case anyone is confused - hardware level exploits + always connected to the internet = very bad and needs to be fixed as soon as possible. Let's not criticize the companies that actually do fix their stuff, especially considering how many devices (eg: mobile phones) are never fixed.

July 11, 2018 | 02:10 PM - Posted by Isaac Johnson

By the way, this wasn't really directed at you, Jeremy, just the tech press in general. Although I know attacking pretty much everything you post has become a popular hobby here for some reason.

July 11, 2018 | 06:18 PM - Posted by Jeremy Hellstrom

Nothing new there ... nor that you didn't grasp what I was talking about.

The picture I showed was a Switch modified to play old PS games -

There is a whole reddit on playing with your Switch and getting all sorts of things

Even NES Golf -

Ubuntu -

or Arch (but check the repository) -

Those are the hacks I speak of; not sure what you are on about.  Someone stealing your Pokemon or something? 

July 11, 2018 | 07:09 PM - Posted by Isaac Johnson

Or stealing credit card and any other personal info stored on the thing (but keep your hands off my Pokemon too!). I know the hacks/mods/exploits/whatever you're talking about here, but those are mostly possible due to security flaws in Tegra. My point is that security flaws need to be addressed first, even if that has a negative impact on 'oh, cool, I can play PS1 games on my Switch!'.

I just don't understand the increasingly flippant attitude most people seem to have towards privacy and security issues in our 'internet of things' world.

July 11, 2018 | 10:04 PM - Posted by Jeremy Hellstrom

why would you save credit card info on a Switch?  that's crazy talk!

July 11, 2018 | 10:22 PM - Posted by Isaac Johnson

I wouldn't, and it is, but I hear there's people who do and other people who would want to steal it.

July 11, 2018 | 02:31 PM - Posted by Rick C (not verified)

In this case, taking advantage of the Switch exploit requires physical access to the hardware, so "needs to be fixed as soon as possible" isn't really true.

July 11, 2018 | 02:40 PM - Posted by Isaac Johnson

Even if/when you need physical access for an exploit you're talking about physical access to a mobile device. Last time I checked that's extremely easy to accomplish, Mr. Not Verified.

July 12, 2018 | 01:11 AM - Posted by collie

When can I use an exploit to turn a Nvidia tegra tablet into a switch? Buying 2 controllers and a used shield to make a switch, even if it cost me a little more than just buying a switch, that is something the teen inside me would blow a load over

July 12, 2018 | 11:41 AM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

Exactly this! Now that Nintendo has blocked this particular exploit on new hardware it makes a lot more sense to just get a Shield and mess around with that. Or, better yet, if people want PlayStation games on the go, there's this thing called a "Vita" that I seem to recall....

July 12, 2018 | 02:37 PM - Posted by Isaac Johnson

Wait, you mean get a Playstation to play Playstation games? Get outta here with that nonsense.

July 12, 2018 | 03:37 PM - Posted by collie

That's insane, that would be like nut you can play outside. Insanity

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