Switch EmuNAND Setup - Use CFW and Stock OS without Ban Risk
This guide will show you how to setup EmuNAND on your hacked Nintendo Switch. This means using a portion of your SD card as the internal storage (NAND) for your Switch while its running custom firmware. This will be undetectable from the Switch’s stock firmware and will essentially keep your stock and custom firmware environments physically separated.
If your goal is to play your legit games online with the clean SysNAND and enjoy custom firmware with the EmuNAND, this guide will help you set that up.
discretion. Do not setup any internet connections while using an unclean SysNAND or EmuNAND without setting up Incognito first.
Unpatched Nintendo Switch
- Not all Nintendo Switch consoles can be hacked; your Switch must be an earlier model (determined by the serial number) that is vulnerable to the fusee-gelee exploit
- Visit ismyswitchpatched.com and enter your Switch’s serial number (found on the white strip next to the USB port) to check if your Switch is hackable
- The serial number can also be found from the Nintendo Switch Home menu in [System Settings] -> [Settings] -> [Serial Information]
- A RCM Jig is required to enter your Switch into RCM mode (Recovery Mode)
- They are relatively cheap and easy to acquire online
USB-C to USB-A Cable
- A USB-C to USB-A cable is required to connect your Nintendo Switch to your PC
- USB-C to USB-C cable can also be used if your computer features a USB-C port
MicroSD Card (64GB or larger)
- An SD card (and reader) is required to install and launch homebrew on your Nintendo Switch
- Your SD card must be formatted as FAT32 if your Switch does not have the ExFAT driver installed
- If you are unsure, use FAT32 to avoid errors.
- The ExFAT driver can be installed manually without updating firmware after successfully hacking the console
- 64GB or larger is required to make a full backup of your Switch so it is highly recommended over 32GB
Creating EmuNAND Partition
- Insert your SD card into your PC
- Backup all of the files on your SD card to a safe place
- On your PC, open Run and type
diskmgmt.mscopen the Disk Management application
- Identify your SD card from the drives displayed
- Right-click your SD card and select [Delete Volume…] -> [Yes]
- The SD card space should now display “Unallocated“
- Right-click the SD and select [New Simple Volume…] -> [Next]
29856from the [Maximum disk space in MB]
- Enter the result as the [Simple Volume Size in MB]
- Assign a driver letter then select [Do not format this volume] and click [Next]If you intend on using an exFAT SD, you should format this partition to exFAT and skip steps 17 to 21.
- Cancel any errors or prompts to format the disk drive, do not format
- In Disk Management, Right-click the remaining allocated space on your SD and select [New Simple Volume…] -> [Next]
- Allocate the [Maximum disk space in MB] as the [Simple volume in MB], the value should be
- Assign a driver letter then select [Do not format this volume] and click [Next]
- Cancel any errors or prompts to format the disk drive, do not format
- Once complete, ensure both partitions are assigned drive letters and close Disk ManagementRight-click the partition and select [Change Drive Letter and Paths] -> [Add] to assign a drive letter. Close and re-open Disk Management if an error persists.Skip to step 22 if you have opted to format the main SD partition to exFAT in step 10.
- Install MiniTool Partition WizardPay attention during installation and ensure that you click [Decline] any additional software installs
- Once installed, identify your SD card in the MiniTool Partition Wizard main window
- Right-click the first partition you created (NOT 29.1 GB) and select [Format]
- Name the partition and set [File System] to FAT32, this will be the main partition of your SD where your files are stored
- Click [Apply] and close MiniTool Partition Wizard when the process is complete
- Your partition will now appear as a working SD card drive in Windows
Enter RCM and Boot into hekate
- Copy your backed up files back to your SD cardIf you wish to create the EmuNAND from a NAND backup, copy your
/backup/folder to the root of your SD card.
- Copy the
bootloaderfolder from the hekate
.zipto the root of your SD card
- Extract the Atmosphere
- Go to the
/atmosphere/folder from the extracted
/bootloader/payloads/folder on your SD card
- Go to the
/bootloader/folder on your SD card
hekate_ipl.iniin Notepad and add the following lines to the file then save
[Stock (SYSNAND)] fss0=bootloader/payloads/fusee-secondary.bin stock=1 emummc_force_disable=1 icon=bootloader/res/icon_switch.bmp
- Create a folder called
payloadson your PC
/payloads/folder on your PC
- Insert your SD card into your Switch but do not power it on yet
- Install TegraRcmGUI and the APX driver when promptedIf you are not prompted to install the APX driver, go to the [Settings] tab and click [Install Driver]
- Connect your Switch to your PC via USB and ensure it is powered off
- Enter RCM on your Nintendo Switch
- Insert your RCM Jig into the Right Joycon slot, sliding it all the way down
- Hold down the [Vol+] button and press the [Power] button, the Switch will now enter Recovery Mode (RCM) but the screen will stay off
- The icon in TegraRcmGUI should now read [RCM O.K.]
- Select the
hekate_ctcaer.binfile from the
/payloads/folder on your PC and click [Inject payload], your Nintendo Switch should now boot into Hekate
Congratulations on successfully entering RCM and booting into hekate. If you’re new to Switch hacking, consider enabling Auto-RCM to avoid needing the RCM jig in the future.
Setting Up EmuNAND
This method is for creating the EmuNAND from your current SysNAND (Switch Internal Storage). Follow these steps if you wish to create the EmuNAND from a previously made NAND backup.
- From the hekate main menu, select [emuMMC]
- Select [Create emuMMC]
- Select [SD Partition]
- Select [Continue] if an applicable partition is found
- Once complete, select [Close]
- Select [Change emuMMC]
- Select the [SD RAW1] partition
- Your EmuNAND is now [Enabled!]
Boot into EmuNAND CFW
To boot into EmuNAND running custom firmware, simply push your CFW payload with TegraRcmGUI. The Switch will always boot into the EmuNAND CFW as long the
emunand.ini file is present in the
/emuMMC/ folder on your SD card.
Your EmuNAND will use the
/emuMMC/ folder as the location for your CFW’s Nintendo folder. This means content normally stored in the
/Nintendo/ folder such game backups installed to SD and Album images will be stored in the
/emuMMC/RAW1/Nintendo/ folder while running the EmuNAND.
The Stock SysNAND will use the
/Nintendo/ folder on the root of your SD card as normal, this keeps them separated.
If this is your first time hacking your Nintendo Switch and wish to finally set up your custom firmware, follow this guide on installing Atmosphere + Tinfoil / HBG Shop so you can install games directly to your Switch without a PC.
Boot into Stock SysNAND OFW
To boot into the Switch’s stock official firmware, you must use the hekate payload with TegraRcmGUI.
Select [Launch] -> [Stock (SYSNAND)] from the main menu to boot into your console’s stock firmware without any hacks.
If you are converting your SysNAND CFW to EmuNAND CFW and wish to clean your SysNAND to run completely stock, follow this guide on cleaning your NAND of custom firmware files and restoring it to stock Horizon (Switch) OS.
If your Switch’s internal storage (NAND) is completely clean, you an “safely” go online, browse the eShop and update your firmware normally*. Your EmuNAND will be unaffected by the changes, you can update your EmuNAND’s firmware with the ChoidujourNX homebrew if you ever wish to do so.
Congratulations on setting up EmuNAND on your Nintendo Switch, you will now be able to use the Stock SysNAND and CFW EmuNAND concurrently. In short, you’ll now be able to play online on the Stock SysNAND with far less risk of being banned while still having access to the custom firmware benefits with EmuNAND such as game backups and homebrew.
You may wish to change one of your EmuNAND / SysNAND themes in [System Settings] to help you distinguish the two and prevent confusion.