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Dumping Save Data from a 3DS Console
How to Transfer 3DS Save Data to Citra
There are multiple ways to transfer 3DS save data to Citra in a usable form, but the important thing to note is that whatever tool used to get the save data off of the 3DS supports exporting expanded save data. Save data lives in Citra’s emulated SD card directories (
threeSD is a tool written to help import data from your 3DS for Citra more conveniently. It is currently in early development, so problems may occur. Should that happen, report them in our Discord server. Then, you can use an alternate way to dump your files such as Checkpoint.
Refer to threeSD Quickstart Guide for importing your installed titles, updates, DLCs, save data, extra data, system files, etc. Note that you’ll still need a hacked 3DS with GodMode9 to obtain your keys so that threeSD can decrypt the data on your SD card.
As the supported way of transferring save data, Checkpoint is easy to install and use.
- A 3DS with boot9strap installed
- SD card reader (preferred), or a way to use wireless file transfer
- Download Checkpoint from the link above.
- For cia installation, transfer the cia file to the SD card and install it with a cia installer such as FBI. For Rosalina-based Homebrew Launcher, transfer the 3dsx file to
/3ds/on the SD card. Hax-based Homebrew Launchers are not supported by Checkpoint.
Transferring Save Data
- Open Checkpoint. If this is the first time launching Checkpoint, it may take a considerably longer than usual depending on the amount of installed titles.
- Highlight the game you want to dump by navigating to it with the D-pad.
- Press A and select
Backupon the bottom screen. You will be prompted
Yesby pressing A.
- You will have the option to name the save folder. Name it whatever you want or use the name given to it. Press
OKon the bottom screen.
- The top screen will flash a message
Success! Progress correctly saved to disk. Exit out of Checkpoint.
- Transfer all files located in
/3ds/Checkpoint/saves/[Game Name]/[Folder created in Step 4]to the computer.
- Place the files in Citra’s emulated SD card’s save directory. You can open the save directory by right-clicking on a game in Citra and clicking "Open Save Data Directory". If the directory doesn’t exist, start the game once and the directory will be created.
Example diagram showing the correct location of New Super Mario Bros. 2 save data in Citra’s User Directory.
"User directory" └── sdmc └── Nintendo 3DS └── 00000000000000000000000000000000 └── 00000000000000000000000000000000 └── title └── 00040000 └── 0007ae00 └── data └── 00000001 └── BigRedSave.dat