Here is a list of frequently asked questions and, obviously, an answer to each of them. What you want may already be listed on the official Lakka FAQ so check it out aswell.
Does Lakka still have [insert standard Linux issues here] ?
The battery bug has been fixed as of the 02/07/2018 update. Be sure to apply the fix from Hekate 3.0 first !
The known side-effects of using Linux on your Switch are :
- RTC (Real-Time Clock) desynchronization - this will break the date and time in Horizon. To fix that, just stay online in Horizon or reset the time manually after each time you run Lakka.
Will it brick my Switch ? Will it replace my system ?
No. Lakka boots from the SD card, it never touches the NAND of the console. It’s a “dual boot”, if you prefer. However, using Lakka does have side effects, listed in the above question.
What currently works ? What doesn’t ?
See this tiny table for a summary of what works and what doesn’t :
|Wi-Fi||Internal speakers & jack port|
|Bluetooth (partially)||Sleep mode|
|Touch screen||Graceful shutdown|
|Hardware graphics acceleration||USB Host|
|Wired Joy-Cons (it means attached to the console)||Dock support|
|GPU Profile Selection||Wireless Joy-Cons|
|Audio through Bluetooth (A2DP) and AirPlay|
|Screen brightness control|
Which consoles and systems are currently supported ?
- Amstrad CPC
- FB Alpha
- Bandai Wonderswan
- Microsoft DOS
- GCE Vectrex
- Handheld Electronic
- Magnavox Odyssey 2
- MSX / SVI / ColecoVision / SG-1000
- PC Engine
- PC Engine SuperGrafx
- Game Boy Color
- Game Boy Advance
- Virtual Boy
- Genesis / Megadrive
- Master System
- Sharp X68000
- Sinclair ZX 81
- SNK Neo Geo Pocket
- PlayStation Portable
Which standalone games are currently included ?
- Cave Story
- PrBoom (Doom 1 rewrite)
- Mr.Boom (Bomberman clone)
- TyrQuake (Quake 1 rewrite)
- XRick (Rick Dangerous rewrite)
Which miscellaneous cores are currently included ?
- ChaiLove (2D game framework)
- Game Music Emu (video games music player)
- Lutro (LUA game engine)
- PocketCDG (karaoke music player)
- EasyRPG (RPG Maker 2000/2003 engine)
- Remote RetroPad (use your Switch as a joypad for your PC)
How do I change my Wi-Fi MAC Address ?
The MAC Address should be written in the chip in the factory, but for some reason Nintendo didn’t do that. As a result, the MAC Address is software controlled, which means that Horizon has to manually set the address… and Lakka too. As we cannot pull the Horizon MAC from the NAND for now, Lakka uses a random address and writes it to
/storage/.config/macaddress. If you want to use the same address as Horizon, you can by editing this file and rebooting.
Where can I see the IP address of the Switch on my network ?
From your Switch, you can see this in the first tab, Information > Network Information. From your host PC, various methods are listed there.
How do I add games to the system ?
You need to copy your games to the
lakka/storage/roms/downloads directory on your SD card.
Once your games are copied, go to the tab which icon is a plus sign (on Lakka, on the Switch) and scan the directory where you added your game (you can just scan the top-level directory, it will go through everything recursively). If your games were recognized, new tabs will appear (one for each console) with them listed inside. If not, you can still load the game manually from the first tab.
How do I setup Bluetooth audio ?
- Enable Bluetooth in Services
- Pair your headset using SSH : (use Putty on Windows, credentials are
- Wait for your headset to show up and see its MAC address
pair XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX, put the correct MAC address (protip : use tab-completion)
- If the audio is choppy, make sure to update the boot/tegra210-nintendo-switch.dtb file on your SD card (take the one from the latest update archive). If it doesn’t work at all, make sure that Audio driver is set to pulse and Audio and Audio sync are enabled.
Why doesn’t my Bluetooth speaker automatically reconnect when rebooting ?
Ask the developers of BlueZ why they used
: in file and folder names for their config. Hint: it’s an illegal character for both ext4 and FAT32 filesystems, but FAT32 happens to totally reject it while ext4 allows it if escaped. We use FAT32.
How do I setup AirPlay audio ? (thanks to @rd for this guide)
Open SSH and run the command
pactl load-module module-raop-discover. This will discover all AirPlay receivers on your network and add them as PulseAudio sinks. Then, use
pactl to select the sink corresponding to the desired receiver. You can also use the module
module-raop-sink to directly connect to the right receiver, given its IP (see full command below).
You can use your Android device as an AirPlay receiver by using the AirBubble app.
If you want to use your Android device’s own hotspot with AirPlay, you will need to use this command :
pactl load-module module-raop-sink server=[192.168.43.1]:5000 protocol=UDP encryption=RSA codec=ALAC channels=2 format=16 rate=44100 latency_msec=2000
192.168.43.1 is the IP of your Android device. You shouldn’t need to change this, as all Android devices have the same local IP on their own hotspot : 192.168.43.1. Should it not be valid, use
ip route on Lakka : the default gateway IP will be the one to use (assuming you’re connected to your hotspot).
How do I shutdown my Switch from Lakka ?
Short answer : you can’t, reboot to Horizon then shutdown. Long answer : the shutdown option in Lakka was removed for safety reasons ; to shutdown, reboot to RCM then press the POWER button for twelve seconds. It is a good idea to boot in Horizon to shutdown properly from here.
My Switch doesn’t turn on anymore / won’t turn on unless it’s docked / it’s bricked
Don’t worry, your Switch is not bricked. You most probably left it in RCM mode for a prolonged period and it ran out of battery. Plus, the calibration may be wrong.
First, hold the POWER button for twelve seconds to make sure that the Switch if off, then place it on the dock and wait for it to charge at 100%. Don’t forget that the battery is decalibrated !
I have black squares everywhere, the font is ugly and nothing works
Your RetroArch configuration file somehow got corrupted. Delete the
lakka/storage/.config/retroarch/retroarch.cfg file on your SD card and try again. If doing it over SSH, don’t forget to stop RetroArch first :
systemctl stop retroarch && rm -f /storage/.config/retroarch/retroarch.cfg && systemctl start retroarch.
Next time you power off your Switch from Lakka, remember to reboot to RCM first !
My games are always freezing
Enable Advanced settings in User Interface then disable Threaded Video in Video settings. It may enable itself again in the future so be careful.
I have a black screen when trying to boot (hekate works)
It happens sometimes : it boots but the LCD stays black. When it happens, wait a bit for RetroArch to launch (to prevent corrupting the configuration file) and force shutdown by holding the POWER button for twelve seconds. Try to boot again. If it still happens, reboot to Horizon before trying again.
Sometimes however it will not boot at all, giving a black screen everytime you try. This is a know issue, and there is currently no known solution.
Do my Joy-Cons charge when using Lakka ?
Short answer : no. Long answer : while the driver is currently not capable of charging Joy-Cons, this is a feature that’s being worked on.
How do I overclock or underclock the GPU ? What is the GPU profile setting in the first tab ?
This setting allows you to underclock or overclock the GPU of the Switch. At each reboot, the non-docked profile is applied.
While underclocking the GPU can allow the battery to drain slower, be aware that higher profiles may cause power failures when the Switch is not docked. Plus, the Switch was not made to exceed the docked profile : use at your own risk.
How can I see the logs of RetroArch ? How can I troubleshoot Lakka ?
See the official Lakka documentation for a guide on how to access RetroArch logs from SSH (among others).
The time and date are wrong, how can I fix that ?
See the official Lakka documentation for a guide on how to set the correct timezone in Lakka.
How to resume playing after I got back to the menu with the HOME button ?
The Resume option can be reached in two ways :
- First tab > Quick menu
- Current game entry in your playlists (aka “console” tabs)
Lakka is slower than usual / video is choppy while it normally isn’t
Just reboot then !
PPSSPP (PSP emulator) doesn’t work / displays a black screen
To make PPSSPP work you first need to copy the assets in the system directory :
- Download this archive
- Using the method of your choice, extract all the content of the
assetsdirectory in the
lakka/storage/system/PPSSPPdirectory on your SD card (create it if it doesn’t exist)
Touchscreen doesn’t work in DeSmuME (DS emulator) / games are slow
Press HOME, open the core options and set the pointer type to touch. While you’re at it, set frameskip to 1 and CPU cores to 4.
Can my console be banned because I used Lakka ?
Can I update my console and still use Lakka ?
Can you ? Yes. Should you ? No.
Where can I donate ? Can I buy you a beer ?
Don’t buy me a beer. Buy libretro a beer.
I can’t access the Online Updater on Lakka, why ?
Lakka on Switch is not upstreamed yet so the buildbot is not configured for the Online Updater. It will be added back if / when the Switch project is merged with the original Lakka repository.