How to Dump Your Own BIOS on a PCSX2
By Joshua Solomon
Updated September 22, 2017
“PCSX2” is a PlayStation 2 emulator that allows gamers to play “PS2” classics on the PC. The program will only function with proper “Basic Input Output System” files, more commonly referred to as BIOS files. This data is a copyrighted material of Sony; thus, it is illegal to obtain PlayStation 2 BIOS over the Internet. Instead, players must “dump” the data from their PlayStation 2 consoles. In order to accomplish this task, it is necessary to have a “modded” console, a computer capable of burning discs, a blank CD-R and a USB storage device.
Download the “dumpbios-USB.7z” file from 4shared.com (see "Resources"). Click “Download Now.” After a brief wait, click “Download File Now” to initiate the download.
Obtain WinRAR to open the “.7z” file. Obtain a free trial version of the program from the “Download” page on the official WinRAR website. Click the latest version and choose “Download Now” under “Download WinRAR.” Wait for the download to initiate.
Double-click “wrar401.exe” to launch and install the program. Right-click the “dumpbios-USB.7z” file and select the “Extract to dumpbios-USB” option. Double-click the folder that is created to open it.
Use CD burning software to create a disc from the “DumpBios-USB.iso” file. If you do not already have a sufficient program, download a trial version of Alcohol 120% or Nero Burning ROM from their official websites. Once installed, use the “Wizard” programs contained on both programs to load the “.iso” file and burn it to a blank disc.
Check to ensure that your USB storage is “FAT32” formatted. You cannot dump BIOS with an NTFS-formatted device. Go to “My Computer” and right-click on the drive denoting the storage device. Click "Properties" and you will see “FAT32” or “NTFS” under the “File System” field.
Reformat the drive if it isn't “FAT32.” This process will erase all files on the drive, so you should move any valuable data to another directory before proceeding. Right-click on the drive under “My Computer,” select “Format,” choose “FAT32” under “File System” and click “Start.”
Insert the USB device into your PlayStation 2 console's USB port. Turn the system on and load the disc you burned. If a mod chip has not been installed on your PlayStation 2, the application will not load (see "Resources").
Press the “Select” button on your controller at the “Select: Config” prompt. Press the “Circle” button at the “Default:” prompt. Scroll down to “mass:/” and press “Circle” to display your USB storage device directory. Reinsert the device if nothing happens.
Press “Triangle” on your controller, scroll up to the “cdfs:/” directory and press “Circle.” Scroll down to “DUMPBIOS-MASS.ELF” and press “Circle.” Move to “OK” and press “Circle” once more to dump the BIOS from your PlayStation 2.
Launch "PCSX2" on your computer. The program will walk you through the initial configuration process. You cannot use the program until you place the BIOS file into your “C:\Program Files\PCSX2” directory -- the default installation path -- and browse to its location using the “BIOS Search Path.”
Click “Finish” when you've loaded the BIOS file into "PCSX2." You can now play your favorite, legally owned PlayStation 2 games on your computer.
Joshua Solomon is a writer, blogger and content manager based in West Palm Beach, Fla. He graduated magna cum laude from Florida Atlantic University in 2009, earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts in computer arts in animation.