Planning Your Xbox Retirement

xbox cluster

I know this isn’t new, but today is a special day: the new Xbox is going to be officially revealed tonight on everyone’s favorite music-free music channel. This post is about what to do with your soon to be obsolete Xbox.

Xbox-Linux installs have become fairly easy; You no longer have to crack open the case. You can buy or build a simple usb adapter to upload a 2MB file on to the Xbox by using an exploit in MechAssault.  After that you can boot a live Linux cd.  Even after this your Xbox will still be able to play games. 

What you can do with it is up to you imagination. 

The best place to start on this journey is the xbox-linux wiki.

32 thoughts on “Planning Your Xbox Retirement

  1. Just keep in mind that if you choose to soft-mod your xbox with Mechassault (Go for it, it’s easy and painless!) make sure you don’t leave it unplugged for long periods of time, as you will corrupt the Microsoft bios, thereby turning your box into a 130 dollar doorstop until you buy a modchip! I mention this because I really did my homework before I decided to mod mine, but no one warned me about not leaving it off power. Imagine my dismay….

  2. With Xbox Media Center, Xbox will be around for a long time. I have 2 running at home and have modded atleast 20 for friends and the biggest thing people seem to want is the ability to watch things they download off the net, play music files, xlink, etc. In addition to XBMC, A lot of people like the emulators.. I’ve noticed kids who are too young to even have played a snes love the emu and roms. Im looking forward to the day when i can pick up a few more for under $100.

  3. The clockloop problem isnt so much an issue anymore, but back in the early days of softmodding, yes, that was an issue. Basically, once the capacitor that kept track of the time lost all power, the clock would reset. When you would boot it back up, it would try to reset the time, however, with the softmod in place, wouldnt work. I have a newer xbox (1.6) and ive had mine unplugged for days at a time. My girlfriend has a first gen xbox and hers works fine too. Id say if you havea spare usb cable and thumb drive, find a copy of the original mech assault like i did and really unleash your xbox’s potential.

  4. #1… Thats interesting (and sucks as well). I’ve had my xbox unplugged for about 2 weeks before and when I powered the unit on, it went straight to the original xbox dashboard and asked for the time and date. After I set adjusted that, then rebooted the xbox, it put me back into EvoX fine. Not calling you a liar, but damn that sucks about your experience…

  5. DO NOT GET RID OF YOUR XBOX. As much as I respect and love this site, your Xbox will NOT be obsolete if you are a Halo and Halo II lover. Not to mention, XBox’s are easy to hack and there’s ton of stuff out there for them. XBox Media Center… Anyways, why I say all this is because the new Xbox’s [xbox next]are NOT GOING TO BE REVERSE COMPATABLE according to reports (means they can’t play the current games). In addition, there will be no hard drives in them (Flash Drives instead). So, keep your Xbox, and remember that Halo never tends to die for some reason. (And neither does Burnout 3)

  6. keep up to date on the rumors shadowuw, there will be a 20gig drive on it. and it will be detachable for whatever reason, upgrades or simply take the save game to a buddies.

    but i agree dont trash the xbox1 people. with all the homebrew out there it wont die for quite a while.

  7. I’m about to buy an xbox to put either linux or xbox media center on it but i didn’t think myth tv would work because i wouldn’t be able to put a tv capture card in there… are you guys suggesting an external tv capture linked through USB? if so, can anyone suggest any good external tv capture cards?

  8. To #8
    The backwards compatibility hasn’t been announced yet. Some hints have been dropped that the deluxe model WILL play older games. Also, I find it doubtful that it’ll have a 40GB flash drive.

  9. Rak:
    The easiest thing would be to build a mythtv backend, throw it in a closet somewhere, and use some of the xbmc plugins to control it from the xbox. I havent done this myself, but there are people who have done this. I dont have cable, so my media is just streamed from the network. XBMC works perfectly for me.

  10. the best use of the xbox is a gaming console. throw on all your favorite emulators, and copy a bunch of the best xbox games on there (there’s at least 60 games for it now that you could say are “must-haves” for gamers).

    and there are still more games on the way, they say they have 12 more months of new releases. there’s bound to be a half dozen more excellent games coming out.

  11. Seriously, you would have to be completely bonkers to get rid of your xbox.

    In conjunction with Xboxmediaplayer, there simply is no other media playing device that offers as much bang for the buck. It’s a networkable, any format playing little bundle of joy. You will probably want to swap the fan for a larger, quieter one (swapped mine out for an 80mm), but we’re all hardware hackers here, right? If you don’t already have a standalone DivX player or HTPC, this is the cheapest route to go…

    I haven’t even mentioned emulators yet. I actually boxed up my SNES and Megadrive (that’s a Genesis :) and put them back in the attic. Nearly every imaginable platform is well emulated, although it doesn’t really have enough grunt to do a N64 or PSX impression.

    BTW, you can mod it complete free without mechwarrior (or any other exploitable game) if you’re willing to open it up (Torx 20 required) and hotswap the hard disk.

    I plan to pick up a few before they disappear off the shelves completely – you might call me mad, but it’s every retro game console and the perfect entertainment system rolled into one for me.

    The new Xbox won’t be as easily moddable I fear – it’s dissimilarity to PC hardware will probably cripple a lot of homebrew dev :(

  12. thanks for pointing that out, im glad you think I’m an idiot, but dear sir did you realize that on the contrary you my good man are the idiot because that is precicely what i meant. good day to you, dear sir! :)

  13. Won’t be throwing mine out either, XBMC is just too good. I’ll be waiting for the coming hacks of these next gen consoles though.

    Eh hem, sorry to push myself all up in here, but #12/19 you said 4-6 xboxes would equal one xbox according to your comment in post #19………really don’t get that.

  14. #1 The power goin off doesnt corrupt the bios. The mod exploits files neded by the dashboard to load. When it looses the clock it wants to reset that but can’t because the needed files were modified and won’t work. It’s called a clock loop and if you let it sit for a few hours it some times fixes it self. A better softmod is the UDE2. Goto and look in the tutorials and for more up-to-date info ask in the forums.

  15. sorry 21, the 4-6 xbox thing was really not intended to be a pricise calculation. My intention was to overeggagerate the lack of power in these xboxs.

    anyone reading my post was supposed to quickly translate my words to read, “xbox is comparitively slow these days and not really worth clustering because old computer parts would provide more power for less cost”

    Hopefully that finishes my thoughts, im not going to bother with any further clarification.

  16. hey i am deciding to softmod my xbox for halo 2 using action replay and splinter cell. since this is a hacking website, i assume you guys wont be like all the other cocksuckers who want to rid xbox live modding. if anyone knows of any sites that could help me with this, or if you could help me yourself, i would greatly appreciate it………thank you

  17. I finally decided to get an xbox a while back just for the sake of XBMC. With the hdtv connectors and my bigscreen, I can watch hdtv rips of tv shows and nicely upconvert DVDs. $150 for a media center like this is a steal.

  18. hey,i have a problem with my XBMC.
    I tried to change the start.wav with one of my own wav’s,but now my XBMC won’t load anymore… :(
    My xbox starts fine, but then i get a black screen.
    I tried to undo it but I can’t connect to my xbox anymore :s (I use flashFXP)
    I can still play copied games.
    I’ve been searching for 2 months now to fix it but still no progress…
    PLEASE HELP ME!!!!! any ideas or solutions are welcom
    thanks, David

  19. I’v put Gentoox on my xbox (i flashed the TSOP with the cromwell bios) and it runs great.
    (it’s ust sitting there nexst to my tv lately, but the project was realy fun to do).

    anyway thads the story off my xbox

  20. To the guy that replaced his start.wav file in xbmc…

    I did the same thing and had the same problem. For me it was worse because I had setup XBMC as my dashboard. When I did this and got the black screen, the FTP server wasn’t working either.

    To fix this, I booted the Xebian CD, connected to it via SSH as root, mounted the E partition (hda50), my XBMC was installed in e:appsXMBC, luckily I had renamed my original start.wav, so i deleted the new one and renamed the old one back, sync, umount, reboot. Presto!

    I think replacing your start.wav will work if you replace it with another wav file with the exact same specs as the original, but haven’t tried ;)

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