How to Prepare R4 Cards for DS

Written by hilarypost
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How to Prepare R4 Cards for DS
Use a USB-based MicroSD reader to prepare your MicroSD and R4 cartridge. (usb image by Steffi Mueller from

The R4 media cartridge for Nintendo DS allows users to run unlicensed or "homebrew" games and applications on the console without the need for warranty-invalidating hardware modifications. The cartridge contains internal circuitry that mimics the circuit board of a legitimate Nintendo DS cartridge and contains removable internal memory in the form of a MicroSD card. This card is used to prepare the cartridge to be used with Nintendo DS.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • MicroSD card and reader for R4 cartridge (sold with system)

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  1. 1

    Download the latest version of the R4 software from the site in Resources.

  2. 2

    Connect the MicroSD card for your R4 cartridge to the USB port of your computer using the MicroSD reader. Load the card in "Finder" or "My Computer" by double-clicking the drive called "R4" or "No Name."

  3. 3

    Double-click the downloaded R4 software file to unzip. Copy all files and folders within the unzipped directory (named "System") to your MicroSD card.

  4. 4

    Copy game and software files to the MicroSD card. Many sites on the Internet cater to the Nintendo DS home brew community with regularly updated lists of downloadable software; two such sites can be found in Resources.

  5. 5

    Eject the MicroSD card and insert it into the MicroSD slot of the R4 cartridge, with the card's label facing away from the R4 cartridge's. Insert the card into the top slot of your Nintendo DS and turn the system on.

  6. 6

    Launch the R4 cartridge by selecting "R4" from the console's main menu. Tap the name of the game or application you want to launch using the stylus, then press "Start" to launch the program. Press and hold all six action buttons ("A," "B," "X," "Y," "L" and "R") to reset the software and return to the R4 home screen.

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