How Do I Update My PSP Firmware?

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Question: How Do I Update My PSP Firmware?

Keeping your PSP's firmware up to date is important if you want to take advantage of all the neat features Sony has included. Many new game releases will also require you to have a certain firmware version to play on your system. Fortunately, updating your PSP's firmware is not difficult, though it can be a little confusing at first.

Keep in mind, however, that if your want to run homebrew programming, updating your firmware might not be the best choice.

If you just want to run official software and games, though, updating is the best choice.

Answer:

Sony offers three different ways to update your PSP's firmware, so you can choose the one that works best for your internet connection and equipment. Because there are three different ways to update, the first step is to choose which one you'll use. Read the instructions for each if you're not sure, and choose the one that fits best for you.

Update Directly Via System Update

The most straightforward way to update your firmware is by using the "system update" feature on the PSP itself. You need to have a wireless internet connection in order to use this method, so if you connect your computer via a cable or telephone connection and don't use the internet on your PSP, you'll need to choose a different option. If you do have wireless access on your PSP, follow the steps below:

  1. Make sure your PSP battery is charged. Plug the AC adapter into the PSP and a wall socket.
  1. Make sure there's at least 28 MB of free space on your memory stick (or on the onboard memory if you have a PSPgo).
  2. Turn the PSP on and navigate to the "Settings" menu and select "System Update."
  3. When prompted, select "Update via Internet."
  4. You will then have to either select your internet connection (if you've already set one up), or select "[New Connection]" and follow the steps to access your wireless internet connection.
  1. When the PSP is connected, it will automatically check for an update, and if it finds a newer firmware version, it will ask if you want to update. Select "yes."
  2. Do not turn the PSP off or otherwise fiddle with the buttons while you wait for the update to download. If you want to check the status of the download and your power-saving feature has shut off the PSP screen, press the display button to brighten the screen again (it's the button at the bottom with a little rounded rectangle on it).
  3. When the update has downloaded, you will be asked if you want to update right away. Select "yes" and wait for the update to install. The PSP will restart when the update is finished, so make sure the install and restart are complete before pressing any buttons.
  4. If you decide to update later, you can find the download under the "System" menu, in "System Update". This time, select "Update via Storage Media" to begin the update. Alternatively, you can navigate to the "Game" menu and select the memory card and then the update. Press X to begin the update.
  5. Once the update is complete, you can delete the update file from your memory stick to save space.

Update From a UMD

The next most straightforward way to update your firmware is from a recent game UMD.

Obviously, you can't use this method on a PSPgo, and it isn't the best choice if you want the most up-to-date firmware, as even the most recent games will only include the newest version they require to run, and not the newest version released. It can be a good strategy, though, if you only want to bother updating when you have to to run the games you own.

  1. Make sure your PSP battery has a full charge and plug the AC adapter into the PSP and a wall socket.
  2. Put a recent game UMD in the UMD slot (keep in mind that not every game UMD will include an update--it will only be there if the game needs a specific update to run) and turn on the PSP.
  1. If the firmware version on the UMD is more recent than the one on your PSP and that version is required to run the game on the UMD, you'll get a screen asking you to update when you try to run the game. Select "yes" to begin the update.
  2. Alternatively, you can navigate to the update data under the "Game" menu. Select "PSP Update ver. x.xx" (where x.xx stands for whatever firmware version is on the UMD).
  3. Wait for the firmware to install. The PSP will automatically restart once the firmware is installed, so don't try to do anything on your PSP until you're sure the update has finished and the system has restarted.

Update Via a PC (Windows or Mac)

If you don't have a wireless internet connection or never use the internet on your PSP, you can also download PSP firmware updates to your computer and update from there. There are a few different ways to get the download data to your PSP via a PC, but once you figure them out, it's not too difficult. The key is to get the update data onto our PSP's memory stick (or PSPgo's onboard memory) in the correct folder.

  1. Make sure your PSP's battery is charged, and plug it into the wall via its AC adapter.
  2. Insert a memory stick with at least 28 MB of space in one of three places: the PSP, your computer's memory stick slot (if it has one), or a memory card reader.
  3. If you put the memory stick into the PSP or a card reader, connect it to the PC with a USB cable (with a PSP, it may switch to USB mode automatically, or you may have to navigate to the "System" menu and select "USB Mode").
  4. Make sure the memory stick has a top-level folder called "PSP." Within the PSP folder, there should be a folder called "GAME" and within the GAME folder there should be one called "UPDATE" (all folder names without quotes). If the folders don't exist, create them.
  5. Download the update data from the PlayStation website System Update page.
  6. Either save the download directly to the UPDATE folder on the PSP memory stick, or save it somewhere on your computer that you'll find it, then transfer it to the UPDATE folder.
  7. If you used your PC's memory card slot, or a card reader, remove the memory card and insert it into the PSP. If you used your PSP, eject the PSP from the PC and unplug the USB cable (leave the AC adapter plugged in).
  8. Navigate to the PSP's "System" menu and select "System Update." Select "Update via Storage Media" to start the update. Alternatively, you can navigate to the "Game" menu and select the memory card and then the update. Press X to begin the update.
  9. Wait for the firmware to install. The PSP will automatically restart once the firmware is installed, so don't try to do anything on your PSP until you're sure the update has finished and the system has restarted.
  10. Once the update is complete, you can delete the update file from your memory stick to save space.