Apps and Wads.. What are they?
Apps.... wads...... I'm a big newbie and have no idea what they are and what to do with them.
Is this you? Are you new and would love to have some of those awesome Homebrew apps and cool channels that have to be installed using a wad..... Ahhhhhh.
--Don't worry, I'm here to help. I see this question come up all the time so I decided to write an article and explain it to you newbies out there. After all, we all have to start somewhere right?
First off I will try to explain the difference between the two.
--A Wii app is a custom application that someone created just for your Wii. There are many, many different apps out there. Some of them are useless and some of them are very good ones. Apps do not get installed into your Wiiís memory. They only exist on your SD card or USB drive. If you donít want them any more you just simply delete them from your card or USB drive and poof their gone. Just like magicÖ. Well not really magic but you get the point. Apps come in all shapes, sizes, types and colors. They come in the form of USB loaders such as USB Loader GX or Wiiflow to silly things like alarm clocks or turning your remote into a level. Just have a look here for a good selection of Wii apps.
OK, that makes sense but what is a wad file? They are applications like USB loaders too right?
--Well, unlike an app, a wad file does get written into your Wii's memory and is just a bit more involved. Wads also come in many different forms but the most common are things like USB loaders, custom games and IOSs. If youíre not comfortable with your Wii softmoding quite yet, you might want to stay away from wad files until you get to know your system a little better because you can brick your Wii.
OK, thatís about as clear as mud. So how do I use them?
Slow down there killer. Iím not done yet. I need to tell you just a little more about how they work.
--An app is usually in the form of a dol file but sometimes they come in the form of an elf file. Most of the time when you download an app it will come with at least two other files. One of them is an xml file and the other is a png file.
What are these files and what do they do?
Iím glad you asked because a lot of people donít know so I will tell you.
--The dol and/or the elf files are the actual application. You donít need the other two files to run it, just the dol or elf. Both types of files however MUST be named boot.dol or boot.elf or they will not run. The png file always goes by the name of icon.png and is, you guessed it, the pretty button you click on to launch it. The xml file is named meta.xml and gives you the text that is written on the button. The folder structure should look like this (I will use the name Wiiflow in this example but the folder can be named anything most of the time).
Thatís all and good but how do I run it?
Well dah.. You start Homebrew after placing the folders in the correct place and click on the button.
Sweet!! I got that working so tell me how to get my wad files to work.
OK, I see you are comfortable with your Wii enough to venture into wads. Before I tell you how to do this, YOU MUST HAVE BOOTMII AND/OR PRIILOADER INSTALLED!!!! If you donít then donítí go any further until you do. There are guides for that. Do not attempt to install wads if you donít. There is a chance of a brick and I Donít want that to happen but if it does you can recover using one of those tools.
--Wad files are installed with Wad Manager (look here if you need help with Wad Manager). All your wad files go into a folder on your SD card called wad (not wads). If the wad you installed was in the form of a channel then you should now have a brand new channel on your board. If it was an IOS then you just either need to trust that it installed or you can use Syscheck to verify that it did.
I hope this write up helped as much as I enjoyed writing it. I know all of this Wii stuff can be confusing at first and I am just trying to do my part to help.