Leapster Explorer: How To Make a NAND Cartridge
This tutorial documents the steps to follow in order to replace a Leapster Explorer cartridge's One-Time-Programmable memory chip with a rewritable NAND memory chip, create a UBIFS partition/volume on the NAND, and mount the volume in Linux.
Leapster Explorer game cartridge.
NAND chip - a 512MB chip was used for this tutorial (2 GB max)
Soldering equipment (incl. solder paste and wick)
Strongly recommended: A microscope or similar high-powered magnifier.
- Open the cartridge's plastic casing, remove the PCB, and Desolder the OTP part from the PCB
- Clean the OTP pads on the PCB using solder wick
- Apply solder paste to the nand pads, and apply soldering iron on pads to melt solder; the surface tension will draw the solder onto the pads. Clean up excess.
- Place nand onto board on the soldered pads and align the dot with the upper left. (A dot of 'fun-tack' putty underneath the NAND is useful to help keep the part in place)
- Solder one corner pin on each side to tack the NAND down by melting the solder on the pad
- Melt the solder on the other pins to fully solder the nand in place
- Use a continuity checker DMM to verify good contact between the pads and NAND pins. (repair joints as necessary)
- Desolder R4 and R5 and resolder them as pullups on the alternate pads.
- For more info Cartridge Settings
Make sure CartManager is running
Insert the cart and format the Nand with ubi
ubiformat /dev/mtd10 -s 512
Attach the ubifs partition
ubiattach /dev/ubi_ctrl -m 10 -O 2048 -d 2
Create a ubifs volume
ubimkvol /dev/ubi2 -N Cartridge -s 490MiB
Mount the drive
mount -t ubifs ubi2:Cartridge /LF/Cart