Jump to content


Photo

Xbox360FanBoy: The hypervisor and its implications


  • Please log in to reply
29 replies to this topic

#1 XanTium

XanTium

    Xanta Powa!

  • Admin
  • 3,110 posts
  • Location:Solaris
  • Xbox Version:v1.0
  • 360 version:v1 (xenon)

Posted 29 November 2005 - 10:12 PM

Xbox360FanBoy: The hypervisor and its implications-- Posted by XanTium on November 29 16:12 EST
From xbox360fanboy.com:


We're taking an in-depth technical look at one of the Xbox 360's features, its hypervisor. The Xbox 360 contains a hypervisor which provides security for the system--good news for Microsoft, bad news for hackers, as Microsoft has included it as part of its plans for a hack-proof 360. What are the implications of this for gamers and for those who wish to experiment with their console?


Go read the whole article on xbox360fanboy.com.



#2 crystalgeek

crystalgeek

    X-S X-perience

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 332 posts
  • Location:London, UK
  • Interests:Computers, Electronics and anything I can undo with a screwdriver
  • Xbox Version:v1.6
  • 360 version:unknown

Posted 29 November 2005 - 10:36 PM

wow that sounds interesting, the possibilities. wow

#3 kencix

kencix

    X-S Young Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 37 posts

Posted 29 November 2005 - 10:41 PM

everything is possible to crack wink.gif.. nothing is impossible..

#4 Artifex

Artifex

    Kitten Beware...

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 415 posts
  • Xbox Version:unk
  • 360 version:unknown

Posted 29 November 2005 - 10:50 PM

That article contains so innacurate, speculative, uninformed BS that I'd be ashamed to quote it.

I understand that X-S is just doing it's job, reporting the news.... but c'mon... that's not news, it's just some chick rambling about something she obviously knows nothing about. I've always respected the high standards X-S has set for links to external stories, but this is dissapointing.

Just my humble oppinion... I could be wrong.

--Arti

#5 Lamer123

Lamer123

    X-S Genius

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 967 posts
  • Location:Lake Zurich IL USA
  • Interests:Games
  • Xbox Version:v1.0
  • 360 version:v1 (xenon)

Posted 29 November 2005 - 10:51 PM

QUOTE(kencix @ Nov 29 2005, 03:48 PM) View Post

everything is possible to crack wink.gif.. nothing is impossible..


Yeah but can it be done in a reasonable amount of time ?? Look at SHA-1 we still cant burn unsigfhned code now can we and that has been around for like 6 years .

QUOTE
hat article contains so innacurate, speculative, uninformed BS that I'd be ashamed to quote it.

I understand that X-S is just doing it's job, reporting the news.... but c'mon... that's not news, it's just some chick rambling about something she obviously knows nothing about. I've always respected the high standards X-S has set for links to external stories, but this is dissapointing.

Just my humble oppinion... I could be wrong.

--Arti


Agreed

Edited by Lamer123, 29 November 2005 - 10:52 PM.


#6 xboxr

xboxr

    X-S Young Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 47 posts

Posted 29 November 2005 - 11:53 PM

Enemy, I know thy name - Hypervisor!

Other than the name, that article wasn't very useful or insightful. Is this hypervisor system implemented in anything else yet?

#7 cONEction

cONEction

    X-S Expert

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 602 posts

Posted 30 November 2005 - 12:08 AM

For more information about the sHype read :

http://domino.watson...ile/rc23629.pdf

You can get an idea of what exatcly sHype is smile.gif

#8 kronas

kronas

    X-S Enthusiast

  • Members
  • 17 posts

Posted 30 November 2005 - 01:02 AM

QUOTE(cONEction @ Nov 30 2005, 01:15 AM) View Post

For more information about the sHype read :

http://domino.watson...ile/rc23629.pdf

You can get an idea of what exatcly sHype is smile.gif


erm my head hurts already trying to get around that article then the long document, so lets see..

basically hypervisor is a virtual system which runs in kernal mode directly to the hardware, it controls security to the xbox360, the operating system of the 360 is seperate to what hypervisor is when it runs ?

right ? huh.gif

#9 Ace25

Ace25

    X-S Hacker

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,759 posts
  • Location:Somewhere in California...
  • Interests:Modding anything I can...
  • Xbox Version:v1.0
  • 360 version:none

Posted 30 November 2005 - 01:53 AM

Hypervisor seems like VMWare by the sounds of it. It is just a piece of software to make a virtual PC. In the Server world you would use the software to load balance CPUs or use multiple CPUs for a single process (ie. rendering a movie). The article is nothing but speculation and nothing technical at all.

If my understanding is correct, the xbox360 works like this:
1. x360 hardware
2. Hypervisor loads to make a virtual PC out of the hardware + add security
3. x360 then decides how it needs to boot (360 OS or Emulator for x1 games)

So, my thinking is since we are talking about MS here, software is going to be the first hack. MS cant secure or debug their s/w to save their lives. I am thinking something along the font expoit trick (some flaw in a type of file that can be expoited) to make the Hypervisor think its running legit software. All speculation at this point of course.

#10 eDeus

eDeus

    X-S Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 77 posts
  • Xbox Version:v1.1
  • 360 version:unknown

Posted 30 November 2005 - 02:52 AM

QUOTE(Ace25 @ Nov 30 2005, 02:00 AM) View Post

So, my thinking is since we are talking about MS here, software is going to be the first hack. MS cant secure or debug their s/w to save their lives. I am thinking something along the font expoit trick (some flaw in a type of file that can be expoited) to make the Hypervisor think its running legit software. All speculation at this point of course.


Please dont make such blinded sensational comments.

I agree with your thinking however smile.gif Software is obviously the easiest way to go - shame it will be near xbox 720 when the 360 is cracked wide open though.

#11 soulglo83

soulglo83

    X-S Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 68 posts

Posted 30 November 2005 - 03:31 AM

the hypervisor in that article is intermediary to all pc components and the processor (including event channels, and i'd imagine usb/firewire, much smaller chance breaking this open with a dma hack). to be blunt, this hypervisor still has to be circumvented, even if we manage to get an unsigned application into the system's memory, and say we pass measures in the onROM dash to try to execute an unsigned binary, then what!? im not suggesting cracking the hypervisor will be impossible, and seeing as how it appears to piggyback the main cpu, it must not contain that much code. the problem will be decrypting its code, and god how will someone unmount it and leave any pins intact!? let alone dumping it, wow. we dont even have a dump of the flashrom that holds the os, so of course checking of unsigned files to manipulate hasn't been done (not publicly). does anyone know if the onboard flash is writeable? like say, to save configuration info or game saves? does anyone know if bunnie has a box yet?

Edited by soulglo83, 30 November 2005 - 03:44 AM.


#12 BCfosheezy

BCfosheezy

    X-S Freak

  • XS-BANNED
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,668 posts
  • Location:Southern Illinois
  • Xbox Version:v1.0
  • 360 version:v1 (xenon)

Posted 30 November 2005 - 03:38 AM

QUOTE(Ace25 @ Nov 29 2005, 07:00 PM) View Post

Hypervisor seems like VMWare by the sounds of it. It is just a piece of software to make a virtual PC. In the Server world you would use the software to load balance CPUs or use multiple CPUs for a single process (ie. rendering a movie). The article is nothing but speculation and nothing technical at all.

If my understanding is correct, the xbox360 works like this:
1. x360 hardware
2. Hypervisor loads to make a virtual PC out of the hardware + add security
3. x360 then decides how it needs to boot (360 OS or Emulator for x1 games)

So, my thinking is since we are talking about MS here, software is going to be the first hack. MS cant secure or debug their s/w to save their lives. I am thinking something along the font expoit trick (some flaw in a type of file that can be expoited) to make the Hypervisor think its running legit software. All speculation at this point of course.


I don't mean to be technical because you're right, but really it's firmware. The hypervisor is embedded in the cpu. Getting at this so-called insecure software is going to be extremely difficult. I'm not saying it won't be done but I am saying that it should not be taken lightly. It was inevitable that security advance from console to console but this is slightly more sophisticated than a "next step". This is a pretty big advancement in security. I personally like the fact that they went with this approach because it seems to be getting a lot of attention and there are a lot of people out there that already wanted to be the "next Bunnie" but this time it's that much sweeter since the security is so tight. The hypervisor is a double-edged sword though because while it secures the system pretty completely while it's used as intended, if anything else were able to control it or take the place of it all security goes down with it. Since it is implemented at the hardware level I think a modchip with have to be put in place to either disable this hypervisor and run an almost identical one minus the security and have unrestriced access to the cpu and ram.



#13 ebrunn

ebrunn

    X-S Senior Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 215 posts
  • Xbox Version:v1.0

Posted 30 November 2005 - 05:47 AM

thats some hardcore protection. damn

#14 Burgleflickle

Burgleflickle

    X-S Young Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 41 posts
  • Location:MN
  • Xbox Version:unk

Posted 30 November 2005 - 09:30 AM

Software/programming definitely sounds like the way to go. It sounds like the digital signature has to be cracked. Every post I've read keeps coming back to signing. Hypervisor sounds like it's too intertwined into the cpu to be easy for any joe sixpack to mod. I might be way off, but I think I'm noticing a pattern. The only other thing I can think of is attacking the emulator on the hd--even then, checks/security puts up roadblocks.

#15 Avenger 2.0

Avenger 2.0

    X-S X-perience

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 385 posts

Posted 30 November 2005 - 06:59 PM

QUOTE

Hypervisor

A security 'feature' of the Xbox 360.

There is nothing that suggests this is the "real" kind of hypervisor that can be used to run multiple operating systems in parallell. This thing is probably called the hypervisor just because it supervises and checksums the OS in realtime.





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users