Leapster Explorer: UART Boot

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This how-to will show you how to gain UART Boot access to your Explorer. This involves a hardware hack not for the faint of smd soldering skills, or eye sight. There is two connections that need to be made to some pads that are very very tiny, takes some soldering skills, so be prepared. Also being a hardware hack, there is there is a chance of breaking something important, be careful and be warned.

Programs Needed

Serial Port Terminal (hyperterminal, minicom, etc)

Software Needed

A UART enabled Emerald-Boot.bin/Lightning-Boot.bin (work in progress)


DJHI or similar cartridge for access to UART console

Soldering Iron (with very tiny tip)

Wire (very fine gauge)

82K Ohm Resistor


On Explorer

Leapster Explorer-D6 Pull Down.png

D6 Circled there, is the pads you will be working with. Take your 2 pieces of wire and strip a small amount of insulation off one end of each, and solder them to the pads, watch your heat and where the tip is, so as not to destroy the pad or unsolder the resistor next to it. Magnifier would be a good idea here. Then on one of the wires attach the resistor and on the other the switch, then solder the resistor to the switch. Add a dab of hot glue or some other means of strain relief, put back together and you are done. To test, hold down the button, while you turn on your Explorer, nothing should happen. Try it with out holding down the button, to verify your Explorer still works.


Doesn't exist yet, requires modifications to a current boot loader that are yet to be figured out.

Didj examples of UART Booting, should be nearly the same.

UART Boot Didj with Linux

UART Boot Didj with Windows

Under Windows

Under Linux