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PSP Emulators and ISOs: Playing Games from Other Consoles and Backing up Your UMDs

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The PSP has no equal when it comes to handheld gaming: beautiful graphics, intuitive controls, and releases that put many console systems to shame. While Sony did a good job with the available gaming options, we are glad to inform you that there is so much more! For example, did you know it is also possible to play games from the Game Boy Advanced, NES and SNES, Sega Genesis, and other consoles? What about playing PSP games like Lumines — without the UMD? With the use of emulators and ISOs it is possible. If you are a PSP owner, you really can't afford to miss this article that shows you how to set up an emulator and create backups of your UMDs to play directly from Memory Sticks.
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The PSP is the hottest handheld device ever released. It does movies, pictures, songs, gaming, and it does them with pizzazz. Beautiful graphics, an intuitive design, and a flare that you would expect from Apple all have helped make the PSP this year's greatest little gadget.

Despite the fact that the PSP already outperforms all other handheld consoles, there are many people in this world who looked at this device at its launch and wondered, 'I wonder what else it can do?' Answers to this question started to roll in within one week of the US release, and they haven't stopped. As of this article's writing (late August, 2005), it is now possible to surf the net, play thousands of emulated games, run Linux and Windows, rip the game from a UMD and play it from a memory stick, operate a calculator, view camera images, and more. Just keeping up with the developments is practically a full-time job.

While we would like to look at everything, this article will only focus on one thing: games. (A list of other PSP-specific content on Informit is at the end of this article.) Specifically, we are going to examine emulators that allow you to play games from other consoles systems. We'll also explain how to create backups of your UMD games and play them right from the Memory Stick Pro Duo. If you are reading this and do not own a PSP, then I would hope that by the end of this article you will have found a few reasons to get out and buy one!

Version 1.5 Required

The information contained in this article only applies to PSP firmware version 1.0 and 1.5. If you do not have one of these versions, then you are currently out of luck. Sony 'fixed' the loopholes that allow emulators to run in versions 1.51 and above, and complete changed things around in the latest version 2.0. In the future, remember that you should never upgrade your firmware unless it is absolutely necessary. To determine what version firmware you have installed, follow the steps below:

  1. Scroll over to the main menu on the PSP

  2. Scroll down to System Settings and hit X

  3. Scroll down to System Information and hit X

  4. Note the System Software Version as illustrated in figure 1

  5. Figure 01

    Figure 1: System Information Screen

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