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WiiU Homebrew Launcher

The Homebrew Launcher is a WiiU homebrew that lists homebrew applications located on a SD card and permits launching them (similar to the Homebrew Channel of the Wii).


To use the Homebrew Launcher (or HBL, for short) you must copy homebrew_launcher.elf into SD:/wiiu/apps/homebrew_launcher/homebrew_launcher.elf, and run the installer throught your WiiU browser.

The apps that will be listed are should be in the following path /wiiu/apps/homebrew_name/some_elf_name.elf on the root of the SD card. A meta.xml and an icon.png (256x96) are optional. Here is an example:

  • sd:/
    • wiiu/
      • apps/
      • homebrew_launcher/
        • homebrew_launcher.elf
        • meta.xml
        • icon.png
      • loadiine_gx2/
        • loadiine_gx2.elf
        • meta.xml
        • icon.png
      • ddd/
        • ddd.elf
        • meta.xml
        • icon.png
      • ftpiiu/
        • ftpiiu.elf
        • meta.xml
        • icon.png

Building the Homebrew Launcher

To build the main application devkitPPC is required as well as some additionally libraries. If not yet done export the path of devkitPPC and devkitPro to the evironment variables DEVKITPRO and DEVKITPPC.

Some can be found in the "libs" folder of this repository. Extract the "" into your devkitPro directory. This package includes:

  • zlib

In order to build this application you need serval libs:

Install them (in this order) according to their README's. Don't forget the dependencies of the libs itself.

All remaining is to enter the main application path and enter "make". You should get a homebrew_launcher.elf and a homebrew__launcher_dbg.elf in the main path.

To compile the installer application enter the "installer" path on the source code and type "make".

Building using the Docker

It's possible to use a docker image for building. This way you don't need anything installed on your host system.

# make 
docker run -it --rm -v ${PWD}:/project wiiulegacy/hbl_builder:0.1 make

# make clean
docker run -it --rm -v ${PWD}:/project wiiulegacy/hbl_builder:0.1 make clean

Building an application / homebrew (ELF) for the Homebrew Launcher

For an example on how to build an application for the HBL check out the Hello World example application or the port of the libwiiu application Pong for HBL.

Meta XML

The meta.xml is optional and can be put in the same path as the homebrew ELF file to display additional information about the homebrew.

Here is a XML example:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" standalone="yes"?>
<app version="1">
  <version>app version</version>
  <release_date>app release date</release_date>
  <short_description>short description</short_description> 
  <long_description>long description</long_description> 

Icon PNG

The icon.png has to be of the resolution 256 x 96 and can be placed in the same path as the homebrew ELF file. This file is optional and shows an icon for the homebrew inside the homebrew launcher.