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Newbie Requesting Softmod Help - May Have Botched It!


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#1 Daring_Doo

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:13 PM

First, please forgive my ignorance on this issues. I've been scouring the net for days on this topic, and only just now located these forums. The methods I used were probably not the best, because I had not found this place yet!

I have an old XBox (got it at launch) and decided to softmod it finally. My Dash version was correct for the SID installer (used Halo 2 a long time ago to update it!). I grabbed the SID 5.10 pack and the Splinter Cell savegame for the exploit method, and transferred these files to a Microsoft standard memory unit using an XBox controller --> USB cable and Action Replay. The transfers went fine. Afterward, I transferred these files to my XBox HDD, and launched Splinter Cell. After loading the savegame, I was able to get into the SID installer without issue.

Once there, I backed up everything I could (Eeprom, C drive, MS), and then proceeded to the Dual Boot installations. I chose the Hacked Dash / MS Dash install option, and choose the RGB option (as I was outputting over RGB cable to a VGA monitor). The installation went without error.

When the installation finished, I was greeted with a message about how I needed to "Shut down the system, remove any DVD, then restart the system", or something to that effect. I may have botched things here - I pushed the eject button to remove Splinter Cell from the tray. Immediately after ejecting halfway, the tray retracted and the system rebooted itself.

After this, I was only able to load a black screen. Powering off the machine and then using the power button to turn it on gives me the blank screen again. Using the eject button to power on the XBox lets me boot to the retail dashboard as normal, and operation seems fine there.

I thought I would re-use the savegame exploit to get back to the softmod installer, run an uninstallation, and try again. Unfortunately, every time I try to launch the Splinter Cell Exploit, the SID installer will not run. Instead, the game loads a level, but doesn't output video. I get a blank screen, but I can still hear and control Splinter Cell. Attempting the savegame exploit with Mech Assault instead of Splinter Cell didn't fair much better - it just reboots the game when trying to load the exploit, and the colors are messed up.

Could outputting over VGA be in any way an issue here? I'm not sure.

At this point I'm wondering (A) where I screwed things up, and (B ) how and if it's possible to recover and try to softmod again. Any input would be greatly appreciated. Again, sorry for the noob topic, but thanks very much for reading!

#2 Heimdall

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:43 PM

Is your Xbox currently connected to your VGA monitor?

#3 Daring_Doo

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:50 PM

Indeed it is! I lack a television, so I've always run my XBox over VGA.

#4 Heimdall

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:54 PM

Home made cable?

#5 Daring_Doo

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:03 AM

It's actually a third party cable. I forget the company, exactly, but it's certainly not anything direct from Microsoft. I believe I had to purchase it direct from the manufacturer many years ago.

#6 Heimdall

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:05 AM

Hold on. Is it a cable, or a VGA adapter?

#7 Daring_Doo

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:09 AM

Oh, duh, I'm a moron. Sorry. It's most certainly an adapter. It plugs into the A/V port on the back of the XBox, and it's a dongle that has both a port to plug in a standard VGA cord, as well as RCA audio hookups.

Sorry! That's my mistake, and I apologize.

EDIT: I found an old review of it here. It's the X2VGA adapter from Neoya.

Edited by Daring_Doo, 21 February 2012 - 12:13 AM.


#8 Heimdall

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:57 AM

That's what I figured (the adapter, not the moron bit - we all make mistakes!). So, the output from your Xbox ISN'T VGA, and never needs to be, and you have screwed your video settings.........

Now, if you're lucky your Xbox is modded, and the fix is easy. Get hold of HeXEn (Google Heimdall's Xbox Engineering Disc). Burn it to DVD-R at 4x or slower. Cold boot the Xbox with HeXEn in the DVD drive. The LED should turn red, wait 40 seconds then the menu should appear.

If it does, select one of the softmod install options - Krayzie 1.1.1 is probably sensible if you have Splinter Cell. Follow the instructions to install a clean softmod.

Edited by Heimdall, 21 February 2012 - 12:58 AM.


#9 Daring_Doo

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 02:25 AM

Currently downloading Heimdall's ISO and hoping for the best. Thanks so much for your help on this issue! If this doesn't work, I'll try the other method for sure.

#10 Heimdall

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 02:27 AM

Which other method?

#11 fallenangle

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 04:37 PM

That X2VGA thing looks like a really nifty bit of kit. I wonder if it is still available.

Presumably it is a Component to VGA converter and so when RGB output from the Xbox was selected it was, obviously, the wrong signal type and/or the wrong Xbox output pins were enabled. Hence blank screen.

I'm interested in two things: why the MS dash on tray out does display - some sort of built in failsafe? What resolution settings have been checked for the MS dash ie. 480p/720p/1080i? Whatever is set I wouldn't touch them until you get this matter sorted.

Secondly why didn't the Splinter Cell exploit work again.? Surely as long as he was using it correctly (Checkpoints, Linux) Daring_Doo should have been able to get to the installer if both exploit/installer game saves are still present.

I don't recall that RGB output option in AID. A retail ie. unmodded PAL Xbox gives you RGB 480i/60Hz or 576i/50Hz when you use a (RGB) SCART cable with an appropriate RGB enabled SCART socket on the TV of course. When you use a Component lead you get 480i/60Hz or 576i/50Hz Component out.

No setting changes are available or necessary to enable either RGB or Component, the cable type being used is all that is required. Same applies to a modded PAL (NTSC or PAL region changed) Xbox to. So why is that apparently not happening here?

Edited by fallenangle, 21 February 2012 - 04:40 PM.


#12 Daring_Doo

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 04:54 PM

For all my ignorance, Heimdall's suggestion and his HeXEn toolkit saved the day! I was able to get everything working perfectly after reinstalling the softmod through HeXEn. There's a bit of an issue where the 1080i default doesn't display correctly over the X2VGA, but that was easily resolved by scaling back to 720p.

Thank you very, very much for the help! This is pretty awesome. I should've softmodded this thing years ago instead of letting it collect dust!

#13 Heimdall

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 06:46 PM

Finger trouble isn't ignorance smile.gif . Anyway, glad you got it sorted, and that HeXEn made it easy for you smile.gif. Make sure you try out XBMC, or the many emulators that are available.




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