In order to run SMS you will need a working technique to run homebrew PS2 .ELF applications, e.g. a working boot manager such as uLaunchELF. The options you have available to you depend mainly on which PS2 variant you have:
A chubby PS2 (V11 and below) needs one of the following:
A slimline PS2 (V12 and above) needs the following:
If you can't launch .ELF files, you can't run SMS. It is not possible to boot SMS directly from a CD/DVD with an unmodified console. If you've got an unmodified slimline and you still really want to run SMS, as a last resort, you may want to try a disc swapping technique (patience required). Come back to this page when you've got uLaunchELF on your TV screen.
SMS is not an exploit to run ELF files, it needs an exploit or modchip to run. You can't just burn the SMS.ELF file to CD as the PS2 copy protection system will stop you from running it. Please also note that the CDXplorer CD-R method is not a method of starting SMS either. Rather it is a way of supplying media files to SMS once SMS is already running.
Assuming you can meet the above requirements, please select one of the following sections for instructions on how to get SMS onto your PS2: