How to Update an R4 Card

Written by carlos soto
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R4DS is a rewritable disk drive that allows users to run third-party software applications on a Nintendo DS. The R4DS has given amateur programmers the freedom to create numerous Homebrew applications that can run internet browsers, media players or even user-made games on the DS. Though setting up the R4DS takes little time, some applications require users to install the latest firmware on the R4DS. Updating your R4 card takes only a few minutes.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • PC
  • Internet connection
  • R4DS package with MicroSD card, USB adaptor and DS SLOT-1 adaptor

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    Updating R4DS

  1. 1

    Remove the DS SLOT-1 adaptor from your Nintendo DS. Remove the MicroSD card from the adaptor.

  2. 2

    Insert the MicroSD card into the USB adaptor. Plug the adaptor into a USB port on your PC.

  3. 3

    Open the MicroSD folder, which will appear as a removable disk drive on your PC. If you have any save files or important data on your MicroSD drive, copy them to your PC to prevent potential data loss.

  4. 4

    Visit the R4DS website and download the latest kernel folder (see Resources).

  5. 5

    Open the kernel folder with WinRAR or another decompression program. Extract the folder to your desktop.

  6. 6

    Select the contents of the kernel folder and drag them into your MicroSD drive. Click "Replace All" when prompted to update your MicroSD drive contents.

  7. 7

    Eject the MicroSD drive from your computer and remove it from the USB adaptor. Insert the MicroSD drive into the DS SLOT-1 adaptor and insert the adaptor into your DS.

Tips and warnings

  • Always make sure your R4 drive has the latest kernel update, as some applications might not work on older versions.
  • Do not use your R4DS to download copyrighted games, as this violates U.S. copyright law. Only download user-made applications.

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