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Newbie Welcome Guide + Additional Rules. <- READ


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#1 N00bvin

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Posted 02 December 2002 - 01:07 AM

There has been a growing feeling with the MODS that we should start "cracking down" on piracy talk...

1. Most of the talk is the influx of newbies not knowing better, we want to "educate".

2. With the recent events of LIVE banning, plus the past attack on Lik-Sang shows that M$ might be getting "serious" in stopping this kind of thing, and we will not risk these forums with "loose talk" of piracy.

Do not ASK where to get: Games, Programs made with the XDK, or anything else that might be deemed "illegal".

Do not talk about the game you "downloaded" and how to burn it!!!

If you OWN a game and want to back it up (which is STILL shakey legal ground at this point... but acceptable so far) because you want to preserve your original that you spent your hard earned money on... THAT'S what this forum is for. If you want questions on media to use... that's okay too.

Just be VERY careful on your wording, and don't be upset if I edit or even delete your post in the interest of these forums.

We can have fun still, just be smart.


#2 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 04:02 PM



1) WELCOME MESSAGE - NOOBVIN
2) SEARCH BUTTON – Make it your friend! - HSDEMONZ
3) TUTORIALS SECTION – collection of walk-throughs! -HSDEMONZ
4) WHICH MODCHIP/BIOS SHOULD I GET? – HELIUM
5) WANT TO PLAY/MAKE BACKUPS of GAMES? – HSDEMONZ
6) XBOX MODDING GLOSSARY – What they mean… - HELIUM



---[ WELCOME ]---

Updated 4/11/03




Welcome to XBOX SCENE..

On behalf of me and all of the other members of the Xbox-Scene, we plead with you to please read the tutorials before asking ANY questions.

If you absolutely MUST ask a question... use the "search" function of the forums to see if your question has been asked before! If not, expect a possible flame or a the very least a humorous quip about your question (Dark Schneider and myself will try to cover that as much as possible).

We ARE willing to help with legit questions... questions that ARE NOT legit:

1. What is Evolution X
2. How do I connect to my PC with my Xbox
3. How do I install a hard drive
4. Where can I download ________? (insert any possible program)
5. How do I copy games?
6. What brand of CD-R should I use? (you CAN'T use CDR!!!)
7. I fucked up my ________ because I'm a retard monkey and I didn't read the tutorials... what do i do?
8. Your name is GTac01 (sorry, pal, I couldn't resist)


I'm sure opjose, Dark Schneider, BIOYAM, The Legendary Rob, the ever drunk kkattfish, ferrell, retard monkey, the omnipresent Xantium and MANY MORE I didn't mention... will have more invalid questions that can (but should not) be asked... and they can add if they wish...

Please... do some research and try ONE PROJECT at a time!!! Do NOT try to replace your xbox dashboard with evox, make a reset switch and install a new HDD all in one day... you’re your time... PLAY your games and have fun!!!

This is a newbie section, but we are not automated people who answer the same questions over and over all day... it gets old, even though we really want to help. I know it's a lot of info to digest, but give it a shot...



N00bvin – HEAD MODERATOR
Original Source Oct 10 2002 -
Attention All Newbies..., PLEASE READ THIS IMPORTANT!!!

Edited by HSDEMONZ, 31 July 2003 - 04:05 PM.


#3 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 04:03 PM

---[ SEARCH BUTTON ]---

Well.. what can I say that NOOBVIN didn’t.. well.. how about where to start looking for all of this wonderful information that we have available to you.

We have the SEARCH button… Near the top of the screen.. where it says HELP / SEARCH / MEMBERS / CALENDAR.. is the important SEARCH button. Click SEARCH to search the past and recent posts of well of 30000 members. A wealth of information is at your fingertips!

Currently.. SEARCH is limited to a minimum of 3 characters in a SEARCH.

So.. a search for x1 will result in…

ERROR MESSAGE: “One or all of your search keywords were below 3 characters, please go back and increase the length of these search keywords.”

However.. a search of XECUTER will find many dozens of HITS!

Join keywords with AND, OR to help define the search, improving the odds of finding the info YOU want..

matrix AND flash” without the quote will improve your odds of finding MATRIX FLASH details and instructions.

I’d also recommend spending a little time familiarizing yourself with the SEARCH function. This will help you to find info faster in the future, and to avoid getting FLAMED by the regulars!

TIPS: Turn on the SEARCH POSTS FROM to ANY DATE.. as this will reveal more HITS!

Edited by HSDEMONZ, 11 April 2003 - 04:27 PM.


#4 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 04:03 PM

---[ TUTORIALS SECTIONS ]---

The main site www.xbox-scene.com has a number of sections with valuable information. The one you will likely want most.. being new to the site/scene.. is the TUTORIALS section. It contains over 100 detailed GUIDE and WALK-THROUGHS on just about every conceivable XBOX related topic.

Most include Pictures, and detailed step-by-step instructions.

So.. if you know what info you want.. take a look to see if we have the GUIDE you are looking for in the TUTORIALS
Section.

NOTE: Not every great tutorial is in the TUTORIALS section… some are right here in the forums… for example… these great NEWBIE guides…

Matrix Newbie Step by Step Installation and Evox Setup By TYRANT!

Good Networking Guide for FTP / Connection Problems by W M Z

Edited by HSDEMONZ, 11 April 2003 - 04:26 PM.


#5 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 04:04 PM

---[ WHICH MODCHIP SHOULD I GET? ]---

wrote this in response to all the threads asking this very question.. so people with other, more legit questions could have theirs answered instead of bein engulfed

first of all, see the modchips section at xbox-scene.com, generation 3b.

READ theres alot of confusion about what exactly a modchip does. a modchip is a memory chip that holds hacked BIOS for the xbox. any generation 3b modchip can use any bios. the bios decides what the xbox can do, NOT the modchip.

really choosing your chip is a matter of experience and cost.
if you've got technical savy, then you can even try and build your own cheapmod. tutorials on xbox-scene.com.
every chip has just about the same functionality. x2pro and matrix come with their own programmers. these make the chip pretty immune to bad flashing, as u can just reflash it

CheapMod: Wires
x2(either): wires and header, can purchase pogo addon
matrix: comes with pogo pin addon, you CAN solder it with some modification

SWITCHES (to get on xbox live, and switching bios on 1meg chips)
cheapmod: you gotta make the whole chip... switches included
x2pro: switches included with parallell port, attaches to the back of your xbox
x2lite: fairly easy to make your own
matrix: has a fairly interesting "mode3" in which you put an original game in and eject it to turn off the mod, do it again to turn it back on.


Other then the features listed below and above, all modchips do just about the same thing.


MODCHIP COMPARISON
x2pro
PROS:

1 mb bios (allows you to switch between 4 regular bios or fewer large bios)
uses parallell cable, dont have to remove it from the xbox to flash

CONS:
doesn't usually come preflashed, but thats what the programmer is for
cant flash out of box (dont see y you would really want to but yeah)
cant use too long a parallel cable (sometimes too long a cable wont let you flash)

x2lite
PROS:

1mb bios

CONS:
no included pc programmer, but comes preflashed (use evox to reflash it)
if you mess up the flash, you need a friend with a modchip to fix it..
(BJ: Actually, Team Xecutor has schematics to build a programming cable cheaply)

matrix
PROS:

said to have an idiot-proof UI
comes with pogopin adapter (whether you want it or not, no choice given..)

CONS:
only 256 bios (can only use 1 regular bios)
not all pcs work with the PC programmer
must connect directly to PC
DOES NOT WORK ON A 1.2 (newer) BOX (It's possible... see pogo pins section)

cheapmod
PROS:

cheap.. as the name implies
its good for electronics experience

CONS:
you gotta build it yourself, including the switches and pc programmer (if u want that)
your only practical option is the wires method, or a makeshift header



CONNECTIONS

Wires
PROS:

v1.0 boxes have prefilled LPC holes, meaning u just gotta heat them up and stick the wire in
(you still have to solder d0 point with your own solder)
very very sturdy
can be done without removing motherboard (i removed it anyway)

CONS:
requires more soldering on 1.1 boxes
more permanent than other installs
you can potentially mess your box up if you horribly mutilate the solder job... very hard to do

Header Pin
PROS:

extremely easy on 1.1 boxes
only requires you to do a wire to d0

CONS:
slightly less stable then wires but still very sturdy
solder must be removed from LPC holes on 1.0 boxes
must solder pin on back of motherboard to keep it put (just to fix it to the board)

Pogo Pins
PROS:

no soldering required
easy to remove
easier TSOP flashing (see below)

CONS:
unstable compared to other installs
may require adjusting from time to time
been a snap to install for some people, a long time pain for others
current models won't work on new v1.2 boxes without soldering a wire to d0, making them pointless

(BJ: One of the problems here with pogopins, at least for the Matrix version, is that the Matrix Alignment Aid, the LED, does not behave the same on 1.1 Xboxes like it does on 1.0... it 'flickers' on green breifly when a connection is made. Knowing this is half the battle, but it can be more difficult to install on a 1.1 Xbox because of this)

If you're new, practice soldering on old circuit boards first, then u should be fine soldering. But if you dont want to take the risk pogo pins r easy too.

about soldering:
d0 is the hardest point, i reccomend the whole tinning the wire deal, its what i did:
put solder on the end of the wire (not too much), and put the wire just over the point. then heat right above the tip of the wire, so the solder melts and flows to d0

if you want to play it safe, you need a longer wire (you can solder another wire to the original wire, its grey for a x2) and to use the alternate d0 which is much bigger on the bottom of the motherboard. this requires you remove the motherboard. tutorials on all that are at xbox-scene.com


other then that, its NOT that hard.
wires r a snap for a 1.0 box, and header pins a snap for a 1.1 box. headers prolly wut you should use for a 1.2 box too

POGOS WILL NOT WORK ON A 1.2 BOX

TSOP FLASHING this is for knowledge only! you are most likely too new for this to be any use
this is possible with wired solutions, but easiest with pogopins...
i personally dont reccomend this, as there is alot of risk involved. if you are new, please dont try this...
using a pogopin chip such as the matrix, or an x2 on a pogopin adapter and a little soldering on the motherboard (not on the chip), you can use your chip to flash a friends tsop (the bios chip on the mother board) with new bios, effectively modding the box for nothing at all.. this is RISKY and can be irreversable if you mess up (for now anyway), your better off telling them to build or buy a cheapmod

HELIUM – MEMBER
SOURCE Mar 11 2003
Which Chip Should I Get?

For the complete GUIDE and Details of MODCHIPS and BIOS.. following these links…

http://xbox-scene.com/modchips.php


http://xbox-scene.com/bios.php

Edited by HSDEMONZ, 11 April 2003 - 04:22 PM.


#6 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 04:05 PM

---[ WANT TO PLAY/MAKE BACKUPS of GAMES? ]---

Well.. one of the big reasons to MOD and XBOX in the first place.. is to BACKUP your existing GAMES.. (protecting your investment) and playing from BACKUPS you can make with your CD and DVDR Burners.

Well… this is a Huge Topic.. one that won’t be covered here. However.. this will help get you started…

You will need a Burner.. preferably a DVD –R or +R or combo unit.. this way you will have the option of burning your backup to the DVD size Media. 93% of all XBOX titles require DVD-R or DVD+R sized media to make a Backup!

You will also need software.. PC Burning Software, XBOX Dashboard software, etc.

For a more thorough and detailed guide to backing up your games.. click on..

The Complete Guide To Producing, Extracting and Burning XBOX Backups! Updated Forum Thread

or

HTML VERSION

More Guides available in the TUTORIALS section!

Edited by HSDEMONZ, 11 April 2003 - 04:16 PM.


#7 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 04:06 PM

---[ XBOX MODDING GLOSSARY – What they mean…]---..

1.0,1.1,1.2,etc. XBOX Version

Bios - tells your xbox how to work! A hacked bios can allow unsigned code (backups and homebrew software) to run, as well as various other features

Crossover - the kind of cable you need to connect an xbox DIRECTLY to another computer or xbox. if you are using a router, hub, or switch this is NOT necessary and will not work. use a regular cat5 for that. the xbox system link cable is a crossover cable

d0 - an install point in 3rd generation mods, to the right of the LPC holes. if this is not connected right the xbox will boot to the original bios like there is no modchip there

CODE
CODE
 *
*    *
*   * <- d0 (look for the pentagon, its the point slightly out of place)



Dashboard - the program first run when you start your xbox up with nothing in the drive. the default MS dash is the familiar menu for dealing with game saves and audio cds

Eeprom - information about your xbox, can be backed up and restored. this is what is banned by xbox live. stores the hard drive lock key, region code, video mode etc.

Eject Fix - bios fixed so that opening the dvd drive DOESN'T reset the xbox, letting you load a cd with, say, a media player, then putting a video cd in

EvolutionX - the most popular custom dash, has a boot menu for homebrew software, and custom skins etc.

Evox - (credit to shanafan) this is a bios made by the evolutionx team.

Flashing - putting a bios on a bios chip (modchip or TSOP)

FRAG - when you try to boot up, the light on the eject button flashes red and green. means there was a problem with installation.

FTP - file transfer protocol - lets you access your xbox hard drive from the pc (or from another xbox) when it's running evox or another ftp server. you can do anything you could with a drive attatched right to your pc

HDD Swap - Switching the xbox hard drive with another, usually a bigger PC harddrive

IGR - In Game Reset - pressing buttons on controller (usually both triggers + start + back OR triggers + black) to either reset the xbox (evolutionx igr) or return to dash without resetting (x2 bios IGR)

Locked - Xbox hard drives, like laptop hard drives, are locked. You must unlock it to use it in another xbox or pc, and it must be locked to be used without a modchip. You can lock a hard drive on any box, but you need the xbox that locked it to unlock a hard drive. unless you have the eeprom

LPT - printer port, used for external programmers

LPC - points in a 3rd generation chip install, 2 collumns. filled with solder in a v1.0 xbox

Media Flags - each game has a value according to what media it is on. retail games have flags for dvds, so you have to patch it to run off the hard drive (change the media flag)

Modchip - holds bios, makes xbox boot to the bios held instead of onboard bios... kinda odvious... check HERE or HERE

NexGen - another custom dash, early in development. shows potential, beta is a bit too buggy for some

Parallel - see LPT

Patching - retail games need to be patched to run off the harddrive. x2 bios all automatically patch older games for you on the fly, and x2 version 4975 does the new ones as well

Programmer - any way to externally flash your modchip, using a pc

TSOP - the onboard bios chip, can be flashed with a hacked bios as a cheap alternative to a modchip. switches can even be installed. dangerous though, you might ruin your xbox

Ybox - a bios version that looks for yboxdash.xbe when booting up, so you can keep your original dashboard intact. most bios search for evoXdash.xbe now, so it usually isnt necessary

HELIUM
Source Mar 21 2003
XBOX Modding Glossary!

Edited by HSDEMONZ, 23 July 2003 - 04:16 PM.


#8 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 11 April 2003 - 04:17 PM

---[ THANKS! ]---

I’d just like to take the time to say thanks to all of the original contributors to this guide… those individuals who took the time to write POSTS and MINI GUIDES that were originally PINNED here in the NEWBIE SECTION.

They were getting pretty unmanageable.. and caused far to many to not even see the top posts of the day.

Thanks to NOOBVIN, FUZZY, SHANAFAN, and HELIUM.

#9 wonderdog

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Posted 22 July 2003 - 08:49 PM

Hello newbies, welcome to the xbox mod scene. I'll be your guide, so listen close, and stay quiet, and you might learn something!

Part 1


1. Starting out

So you want to mod your xbox. Yay. Good for you. The Xbox is a fantastic piece of hardware. It is packed with powerful and useful technology, very similair to that found in modern PC's. It has a hard disk, a DVD drive, an Intel processor, an Nvidia graphics chipset, USB compatible controllers (albeit with a funny shaped plug) and very importantly, a network card built in.

Lots of people have looked at the spec of the xbox and realised its potential as a multimedia centre. A standard unit which can be used for many tasks, playing games, watching movies, basically everything your very expensive desktop PC can do, but for under $200/£150, and without all the hassle of making sure you setup is "compatible" or "up to spec" for the software you wish to run. A Universal standard which can be embraced for the greater good if you will.

Unfortunately, MS (from here on lovingly referred to as M$) decided to lock up many of these useful features in order to control what you can and can't do with your machine, in order to maintian thier control over the software development and release structure of the system. Thats why the mod scene has sprung up. Modders and coders, by numerous methods be it hardware , are bringing back this functionality and usability. They want to make full use of the hardware they've purchased, and dont want to have to ask M$'s permission to do so.

Well, thats it. Here we are, now, with a wide variety of confusion Jargon ready to beset you as you take your first tentative steps into the Mod scene.

Chill, its not that scary once you get a grip on the basics, and thats where we'll start.


2. The Basics


Whether your an independant coder, who wishes to add funtionality to the xbox by way of clever emulator software, or a university hardware purchaser who wants to run 100 xbox's with linux as cheap workstations, or just a punk who wants to play the odd back-up game, you need to mod your box in some way.

Back in the day, this was only possible by opening up the box. and carefully soldering in a small circuitboard (modchip) with about 10 dozen wires on it. Ouch, not a job for an amateur. This was necessary as it was the most straightforward to bypass the lowest level of securtiy on the xbox, which is stored on the BIOS EEPROM (Electronically Erasable Programmable ROM chip), basically a little bit of memory which holds all the basic "how to's" which translate what a program wants to do, into what the hardware itself does.

This allowed mod'ers to use thier own modified Bios's instead, stored inside an EEPROM on the modchip. Most of these bios's were (and still are) illegal, as they are based upon the original M$ Bios code, extracted from the original EEPROM (by a long and complicated process! just accept it!) and modified to disable the parts which deal with copy protection while still allowing for the basic things like loading disks and making the controllers work (which we still want to work obviously). Obviously, M$ take a dim view of modifications to thier code in this way, and see it as an infringment of copyright, which is one of the reasons it is so difficult for newbies to find this software (its hidden for the protection of all involved).

An exception to this rule is the Cromwell (linux) bios, produced by the Xbox Linux team. This bios is all homebrew code, which M$ has no legal claim on, and so is powerless to squash. Unfortunately, since it is being built from the ground up with no help from M$ it is under constant development, and while new and improved funtctionality is being added all the time it is still far from perfect and is altogether useless to many people looking to mod thier box (as it is not compatible with retail xbox software in any way, so cant be used to play backups).

This concept of modifying the bios, or at least the information passed to it, is still used in one way or antoher in every mod and exploit you'll find today.


3. Homebrew code

Homebrew code, as the name suggests, is software produced for the xbox by programmers without the backing of a software house or M$. However, much (if not all) of this software is produced or at least tested using the official M$ XDK (Xbox software Development Kit) which is a compiler which runs on a Desktop PC and transforms raw code into the .xbe executables (similar to the .exe files on your PC) which the xbox can run. There is a development kit in production at the moment which aims to allow programmers to develop (and thus be able to distribute) homebrew software legally, but as with the Linux bios, its progress is impeded because M$ isn't interested in helping out, so its a lot of trial and error getting functions to work.

Still, there is a ton of homebrew software available on the net, from media player for watching DiVX movies on your box, such as XBMP (Xbox Media Player) to emulators which allow you play games from other gaming systems by simulating them on the xbox (like xSnes9x). this software s often distributed as what is known as "Source Code", rather than as a "Binary". The differance is that "source code" is what the programmer actually creates, it is the instructions on how to build the xbe executable for the xbox to run. The official M$ XDK is effectively a factory which builds (compiles) the final product or "binary" executable file from this source code.

The reason source is often distributed, is because there is no illegality in it, but to distribute binaries would mean admitting to having an illegal copy of the M$ XDK, and would expose the programmer to M$'s lawyers! That said, there is no shortage of pre-compiled code on the net. It is technically illegal though, but that doesnt stop many, many, many people using it on thier xbox's.


4. Most common type of Mod:- ModChips

The hardware modchip is the most widespread modification to the xbox. The days of the 100 wire chip I spoke of above are long gone. Modern chips utilize only a few soldered on wires (if any, some such as the Matrix Modchip or certain versions of the X-ecuter mearly screw onto the motherboard and make thier electircal contacts with carefully placed pogo-pins). They still work in the same way as the old chips though, by containing an alternate bios of some kind in order to bypass the M$ protection systems. Most modern chips can be "Flashed" (programmed) with a wide variety of bios's, legal or otherwise!

These Mod-chips are currently the core of the Mod scene. They offer the most features, highest level of stability and best compatibiltiy with games etc. However, they have problems too. If you open up your xbox, and modify it in any physical way (like by soldering on a great big bit of circuit board!) you will invalidate the warranty. So if your box goes pop a week later during a thunder storm, tough. They also require a certain level of skill to execute correctly. It can be damn tricky work soldering all those wires in the right place, and its easy to make irrepairable mistakes. Mod-chip fitting should only be attempted by someone who has a good funtcional knowledge of electronics and solderingg. Many people have them fitted by someone who knows what thier doing, or buy a "pre-modded" box, with the chip already fitted (generally not available from major vendors!).


4.5 Flashing the original TSOP


I should note here, that at manufacture, the EEPROM which holds the original M$ bios is not writable too, but by soldering a single point on the motherboard, t is possible to flash the chip with your replacement bios thus removing the need for a mod chip. This is can be achieved by several methods, all Hardcore and very risky, and not for a newbie to be fannying around with!


5. The new and exciting mod method!

The second, and highly exciting type of modifications are the software only exploits which have appeared on the scene in the last month or so. A mod which requires no physical alteration the the xbox is theoretically fully reversable, and has no impact on most hardware warranties. It all started when a guy called Habibi working on the xbox version linux came up with a clever way to trick the Xbox into running code which the M$ bioses copy protection thought was proper M$ certified code. He did this by using a flaw in the savegame system of the game 007:Agent Under Fire. By hiding the program he wanted to run inside a modified savegame, and then exploiting a flaw in the way the game read the savegame when it was loaded, he could trick the xbox into running the inserted code, which he had "signed" to make look like a part of the game. This flaw was soon shown to exist also in M$'s own Mechassault game.

Originally, the exploit was released only as a technical demo which displayed a nice Linux penguin on the screen (just so Habaibi could prove it worked). However, the protection Habibi wrote into his non-malicious demo was quickly broken by other coders, and his exploit was modified to run just about anything. The encryption key discovered and used by habibi (now known as the -habibi key in most places) can now be used to disguise other programs (using a program called xbedump) which can then be activated by loading them through the modified savegames. Specialist Dashboards (the Xbox equivelant of the windows desktop, i.e., that thing which pops up if you switch on the xbox without a disk in) which allow FTP access over a network to the Xbox's disk drives are now commonplace. If you look in the "usual places" you can find zip files for savegames for both mechassault and 007:AUF which load a version of the popular Evo-X dashboard (signed with the habibi key of course!).

Once software access to the disk drives was gained, the software only exploit dream became a reality. It was now possible to copy and run programs from the xbox hard drives directly, without ever having to fit a mod-chip or run an illegal bios. There were limitations though, all these programs had to be correctly signed using the -habibi key before they would work (which takes time!), and they where still all ran by the long winded process of tricking the xbox into thinking an alternate Dashboard was part of 007 or MA, and running these further programs through that dashboard once you had access to the HD. Also, you couldn't run a backup game from a disk, as the xbox bios would reset the xbox when you ejected the 007/MA disk.

The Complex!Loader came to the rescue though. this program didn't actually replace the bios (as modchips would) but actually made minor changes to it while it was running. This allows you to disable reset on eject, etc, meaning you can load unsigned code or backups from disks! Unfortunately, the Complex!loader is only compatible with selected bios verisons, so its hit or miss whether it will work for you.

To counter all these limitations, a bloke/gal/group of blokes and gals/heamaphrodite (no-one really knows, as they've kept thier identity secret) called Free-X revealed that they had discovered a flaw in the xbox loading sequence, which would allow the operation of the xbox to be compromised even before the protection systems could kick in (I'm not even going near the poop-storm surrounding his/her/thier reasons for this!). The flaw was in the fonts files loaded on startup, which were for some unknown reason not subject to the protection found on just about every other Xbox file. By making modifications to these font files, it was discovered that a modified dashboard could be loaded on bootup instead of the original M$ Dash using a key... thus totally circumnavigating any protection systems, and allowing you to do whatever the hell you want with the xbox (provided the dash you loaded supported it!). There are currently problems with this system though, mainly related to the clock. If you leave the xbox unplugged for too long, you have to reset the clock on statup right? well if the fonts have been modified, this process goes tits-up, and sends the xbox into a constant reboot cycle. Updated fonts such as bert and ernie reloaded and Big-fonts have been released to try and combat this, but they dont really prevent it, rather they just allow the problem to fix itself within a reboot or three (dozen).

Obviously this is not a perfect solution, and everyone is trying very hard to resolve this problem.

As an aside, the font exloit also exists in a part of the audio code loaded at bootup (the ST.DB flaw/exploit), and this can be exploited in the same way. hopefully this will provide a solution to the clock based failings of the font exploit at present.

The most recent development in this area, and the one which could sound the final death nell for the hardware modchips is the Phoenix bios loader. The bios loader, which can be run either by the 007/MA exploit or through the font/audio hack is a cracking bit of software which replaces the whole BIOS kernal loaded into memory on startup with another Bios (for example, any of the illegal ones available). This means you have ALL the functionality of a hardware modchip, but without any hardware modding! This is possibly the most promising and useful advancement in the mod scene since the original homebrew mod-chip, and once the creases are ironed out of the font exploit and some minor issues with reset on eject and the number of bios's it can use at current, it will probably be the direction the whole mod scene takes in future.


6 The Xbox Live issue.


A common question from newbies is "Will my xbox still work with xbox-live if I use this mod/exploit?" The simple answer is... probably not.

When you connect to Live, M$ scans your hard disks and checks the BIOS that is running. If it finds anything dodgy going on, it locks your account and crashes. Ouchy. Also remember that you will never, ever be able to run backups on live, because theres no way in hell anyone is going to find the M$ xbox private/public hash keys anytime soon, resigning with a known key (eg Habibi) doesnt work, they will know, and hump you for it.

However, there are work arounds. Apparently your account itself isnt locked out, just the modded xbox you tried to access it from. It should still be able to work from another non-modded xbox, or if you restore a backup of your hard disk.

It is believed that MS scans the C: drive quite thouroghly for any changes or modifications, however checking of the E: is less stringent (since it is there to hold a wide variety of updates and crap, and even M$ cant keep tabs on what should and shouldnt be there). The best place to store all you nefarious software though is the fabled F: drive. the F: drive is only available to those who have fitted a bigger HD, or to those lucky enought the have an Xbox with an HD suplied by Seagate (later model Xbox's mainly). If this is the case, it is possible to format an extra 2+ gigs of unused space on the HD. MS has no reason to check this drive as it is not enabled in retail xbox's, so is the safest place to keep your stuff so the Live checker cant find it.

Note however, that theres no point hiding it here if your using all the font exploits on the C:, because Live WILL spot them and ban you. Its only really "safe" if you boot everything thorugh the 007/MA patch.


7. Summary


Well, thats it, a brief rundown of the scene for newbies, and it might stop you having to ask some of the questions that seem to annoy some of the touchier regulars around here so much! The Software only Modding scene especially is a very exciting field, and given that it only really got underway a couple of months ago, great advances have been made and will continue to be made.

If I were you, I'd Watch this space folks, because its gonna be big... (and cheap!)

If You see anything wrong, or if you think anything deserves and update, let me know. I'm only human (except on weekends, when I cover for God)

#Wonderdog

#10 vidgms4me

vidgms4me

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Posted 27 July 2003 - 09:43 PM


This is a compilation of the questions that are answered daily and *will* be locked. Check this before posting anything. This is written due to the fact that many people ignore the FAQ.

==============================
Misc
==============================

I can't find files!
http://xbox-scene.co...icles/xbins.php

Where are the almighty tutorials people keep mentioning?
http://xbox-scene.com/tutorials.php


==============================
Backing-Up Games/Burning
==============================


How can I burn backups?
http://forums.xbox-s...ST&f=11&t=15130

I can't run new games! They just hang at loading screen/give me a dirty disc error!
Run ADR patcher and patch the default.xbe file, or upgrade to a newer bios, such as x2 4977.

What tool can I use to backup things to my hard drive?
Dvd2xbox by WiSo is currently the best (in my opinion) tool to backup games to my hard disk.

How can I download games/pirate games/etc?
No piracy/downloading games talk. Any piracy talk is liable to get you banned.

I am having problems with Yursoft's xiso!
Don't use xiso. It is known to create bad ISO's. SimplexISO and Craxtion are the best iso creation programs at the moment.

What DVD drive do I have?
http://homepage.ntlw...innis/xbox-dvd/

Can the xbox read CD-R's, cd-rw's, etc?
This all depends on your dvd drive. The samsung is known to have a high success rate with cd-r, cd-rw, dvd-r, and dvd-rw. There is a lower success rate with dvd+r and dvd+rw on samsung drives. The philips drive is known to have a similar success rate to the samsung, except it may have a better chance or reading dvd+ media, and a lower success rate of reading cd-r. The thomson drives have a very low success rate with cd-r. Please note that all of these factors can vary depending on the media you use/how you burn, etc.

I'm having problems and getting OCX errors with Craxtion!
http://users.bestweb...on/solution.rar

==============================
Networking/Xbox Live
==============================


How can I put stuff in the xbox?
The easiest way to access xbox files is to "network" the xbox and install via ftp. A basic guide to "networking" the xbox can be found here.

Can I use a modchip with xbox live?
You must turn the chip off, turn the xbox off, and then on. So in other words, yes, but your chip must be turned off.

What can I play backup games on, similar to live?
XBConnect.

==============================
Hard Drives
==============================


How can I install a new hard drive into my xbox?
http://xbox-scene.co...dd-install2.php

Does this hard drive need to meet any requirements?
If you wish to use the xbox with the chip turned off, or want to use xbox live, the hard drive must be lockable. Lockable hard drives

I get error 5 when I turn my chip off!
If you replaced a hard drive and didn't lock it, it must be locked with configmagic.

Will my xbox hard drive overheat?
There is a lot of talk about this. Some people have trouble on 7200rpm drives with this, while others don't. Some put an extra fan in to cool the xbox down. Ususally it is NOT needed.


==============================
Xbox Software
==============================


How do I install xbox software?
Xbox software is "installed" by simply UnRAR/Ziping and by placing it in the correct folder. Most dashboards are set to add menu entries for games and apps placed in F:\apps, F:\games, E:\games, or E:\apps.

I'm trying to read an .nfo file, but it says it is corrupt!
NFO files must be opened in notepad. They are just text documents.


==============================
Mod chips/BIOS
==============================


My xbox is flashing Red/Green and rebooting! What to do?!?
Your xbox is fragging. This is probably caused by a bad flash/bad lpc point soldering/misaligned pogopins/ soldering d0 as wrong point, etc.

What version xbox do I have?
http://xbox-scene.com/versions.php

Can I use a modchip on the v1.3 xboxes?
Both the x2.2 series modchips and the Chameleon mod chip work on a 1.3 xbox.

Should I use pogopins on my xbox?
People often have problems with pogopins. It is reccomended that you solder, as it will cause you much less stress in the end. Please note that this is a matter of opinion, and this thread should not become an argument about it.

How can I Flash my BIOS in evox?
Put a bios of the correct size in the C:\bios folder (1mb for the x2 series, 256k for matrix/cheapmod) and go into system utils-->flash bios.

Should I use the Evox Bios for evox dashboard?
The evox bios is completely seperate from the evox dashboard. In addition, the bios you use isn't dependant on the chip, so you can use the x2 bios on a matrix chip, for example.

What's the latest and greatest bios?
The x2 bios is the latest and best bios. It can be used on any gen3b chip, and does not require the x2 chip. It solves the media check problem, and has all of the latest features. The x2 4977 bios is reccomended for all chips, except you must use the x2 4976.02 bios in order to use mode 3 on the matrix modchip.

I'm flashing my chip with the FlashBIOS and I have the bios.bin file on my cd. Why won't it read?
It could be several things. First, remember to name it correctly. Use BIOS.BIN (all caps) for the x2 flashbios, and LINUXBIO.BIN (thanks to Xeero for the info) for the Chameleon-variation of the flashbios. Next, you might have to include a dummy file, or a bunch of big files that take up space. Finally, you may need to try a different brand cdrw.

==============================
Exploits
==============================


Are the exploits worth it? Are they better thatn a mod chip?
This is purely a matter of opinion. Let's leave it at that. There have been plenty of flame wars over this, and there are no need to create more. It's a matter of opinion, and let's keep it at that.




Please post any other questions you see locked or frequently asked here, and I will add them here. Don't ask questions here.

And when all else fails SEARCH before asking questions.

I know this is a bit cluttered. I am in the process of catagorizing it now.

And thanks for the pin.

Edited by vidgms4me, 30 July 2003 - 10:05 PM.





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