Unlocking / Locking HDD

Discussion about Modding the XBOX, including hardware and software hacks.
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Mangraviti
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Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by Mangraviti » Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:49 am

Hello guys.
I'm new to the forum so excuse me beforehand.

I have an original XBOX which I softmodded a long, long time ago and had a 120GB drive installed.

Now, I want to upgrade the HDD to a 2TB HDD (which my skills can handle without too much trouble). I'll be using a SATA converter and a proper IDE cable for that, don't worry.

My question is......

Given that it's a very large HDD (compared to the 120GB drive I currently have), I have a few questions about file transfer.

My problem is that I have every single XBOX game in a folder, in my PC (yes, every single original XBOX games) and they add up to just under 2TB of data. Transferring that much data over FTP and the good ol' XBOX ethernet, according to my calculations, will take 536 hours if everything goes smoothly. That's over 22 days (I don't think the console can actually work for that long). lol

So, I wanted to upgrade the HDD to 2TB, and then hook it up to my PC over a USB 3.0 or straight SATA but, as far as I remember from the days of XBOXing, the console locks the HDD and makes it impossible to read/write, correct?

Any ideas on how I should proceed with this? I am using the latest XBMC4XBOX and I still haven't started the cloning process to move on to the new 2TB HDD.

BTW, if anyone is interested in my games' list, give me a shout. I have 877 region free games (unfortunately I don't own the Japanese NTSC releases).

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance!

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cashonly
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Re: Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by cashonly » Tue Feb 06, 2018 12:47 pm

I would do like this:

-TSOP the console (bridge with solder the two "enable write" jumpers of TSOP chip, and then with AID disc, flash the TSOP) and this would alow you to use unlocked HDD's.
-with AID disc prepare the new HDD inside the console and dont lock it.
-connect the new HDD to the PC and copy the games with a program like "Xplorer360"
-put it back inside the console and play your favorite games
-profit $$$$
These pretzels are making me thirsty!

Coldly-Indifferent
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Re: Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by Coldly-Indifferent » Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:14 pm

Have you ever used Xplorer360 for direct PC to USB HDD or flash drive transfers? Well I have and do it regularly, particularly the latter. I'll admit I do not have any USB v3.0 compatible devices so that might improve things but using USB v2.0 it is VERY slow.

Only a few days ago I transferred slightly <100MB of Xbox stuff, a couple of emulator updates, the XBMC Origins skin and a few other things to my USB v2.0 Sandisk Cruzer FATX formatted flash drive and it took 10+mins. No problem and I often use this method for small transfers like that. The time taken really is typical for my system.

I have transferred one RARed 1.8GB Xbox game this way and it took so many hours it was stupid. Unpacking, creating an ISO from that instead, burning it to disc and ripping to the Xbox HDD using DVD2Xbox would likely have taken under 15mins from start to finish. Assuming it is already set up FTPing it direct would have taken far less time than that.

I can't be bothered to do the maths for 2TB of material but we're talking months not just days using Xplorer360. :)

FTPing is many magnitudes of speed faster.

Mangraviti
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Re: Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by Mangraviti » Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:51 pm

cashonly wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 12:47 pm
I would do like this:

-TSOP the console (bridge with solder the two "enable write" jumpers of TSOP chip, and then with AID disc, flash the TSOP) and this would alow you to use unlocked HDD's.
-with AID disc prepare the new HDD inside the console and dont lock it.
-connect the new HDD to the PC and copy the games with a program like "Xplorer360"
-put it back inside the console and play your favorite games
-profit $$$$
Hey mate, thanks for the reply.

Do you know how long I have to do the hot-swapping to a USB enclosure? It's been a while I don't do that sort of thing but I do remember we have a few seconds. I mean, I will be unplugging the SATA-IDE adaptor from the XBOX, then unplugging the adapter from the HDD and then plugging the SATA HDD to the enclosure. I don't have any soldering iron or skills to solder (I'm terrible and shaky at it).

I was thinking hot-swapping and using a Linux distribution to copy it. There are a few tools that allow "native" Linux read/write capabilities on FATX and I thought I could give it a go.

Do you think I could partition the drive before and copy the files under a PC environment and THEN use Chimp to create just the applicable partitions would do the trick?

Mangraviti
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Re: Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by Mangraviti » Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:00 pm

Coldly-Indifferent wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:14 pm
Have you ever used Xplorer360 for direct PC to USB HDD or flash drive transfers? Well I have and do it regularly, particularly the latter. I'll admit I do not have any USB v3.0 compatible devices so that might improve things but using USB v2.0 it is VERY slow.

Only a few days ago I transferred slightly <100MB of Xbox stuff, a couple of emulator updates, the XBMC Origins skin and a few other things to my USB v2.0 Sandisk Cruzer FATX formatted flash drive and it took 10+mins. No problem and I often use this method for small transfers like that. The time taken really is typical for my system.

I have transferred one RARed 1.8GB Xbox game this way and it took so many hours it was stupid. Unpacking, creating an ISO from that instead, burning it to disc and ripping to the Xbox HDD using DVD2Xbox would likely have taken under 15mins from start to finish. Assuming it is already set up FTPing it direct would have taken far less time than that.

I can't be bothered to do the maths for 2TB of material but we're talking months not just days using Xplorer360. :)

FTPing is many magnitudes of speed faster.
But does FATXplorer work with orignal XBOX FATx? I thought it was only for XBOX 360 partitions. I will try with a USB 3.0 and see how it goes.

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GoTeamScotch
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Re: Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by GoTeamScotch » Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:06 pm

You don't need to do a hotswap. That is only for gaining access to your Xbox's hard drive for the first time. After that, you have the hard drive key which you can use to lock/unlock the drive at will (note: consider "nulling" your hard drive key... see my signature). If you don't have your hard drive key, you'll need to make a backup of your Xbox's EEPROM, which contains all your unique console passwords and such. With this EEPROM backup, you can lock/unlock your current drive or new drives using the same hard drive password.

Upgrading a hard drive doesn't require a hacked (aka TSOP flahsed) BIOS but it does make things easier. If your Xbox is already softmodded, doing a TSOP flash isn't all that much work. You basically take a soldering iron and bridge two small points together, then burn a tool called HeXeN to a disc and pop it into your console. HeXeN will flash a shiny new BIOS to your console. Going this route makes it so you can drop in a new unformatted hard drive and then use a formatting tool (HeXeN also does this) burned to a disc to format your new hard drive. This route also negates the need to mess with hard drive locking/unlocking. Keep in mind, TSOP flashing can't be done on the newest 1.6 Xbox motherboards.

As for your question about taking advantage of faster transfer speeds than just FTP/ethernet, this is something I've looked into on my own a bit. I have a SATA to USB 3 adapter and I use it occasionally for building new hard drives in Windows with the tool xboxhdm23. My adapter can't lock/unlock drives but it does work for building them. Xboxhdm seems to have issues with huge partitions, so I tend to use xboxhdm23 to build the primary partitions (C,E, X,Y,Z) and then use the Xbox app XBpartitioner 1.3 to format the F and G partitions the proper way. Again, if you have a TSOP flashed Xbox or if your Xbox has a modchip, you don't need to build your drive from a PC.

Long story short, there isn't a good reliable way to copy files to an Xbox HDD besides FTP. There are FATX file explorers such as xplorer360, but in my experience, xplorer360 chokes or crashes when dragging and dropping hundreds of GBs (hundreds of thousands of files) worth of files into a partition. If something doesn't copy successfully, you don't have a list of files that failed to copy like you do with FTP. Maybe other people have had more success here but I at least haven't. Your mileage may vary.

There's FATX drivers for Linux, but they can only READ a drive and not WRITE to it. Xbox Hard Drive Manager (xboxhdm) can read/write/format FATX partitions, but it only works from an old version of Linux and personally I've never had much success in using it to copy files over. It seems to be limited to only being able to use folders with just 1 CD's worth of data (~700MB) and any more makes it crash. I'm still playing around with this method.

Now, you should be able to get about 11MB/s transfer speeds over FTP. If you have 1,700GB worth of games, that's 1,700,000MB. At 11MB/s, that means it should take 42 hours of copying to complete, not 536 hours. 1,700,000MB divided by 11MB/s = 154,545 seconds or 2,575 minutes or 42.9 hours. Consider that numerous small files take longer to transfer than singular larger files, so call it 50 hours of copying time... or just over two days. That's quite a while, but not that big of a deal for a one-time process.

Long story short, you best bet is probably to do a TSOP flash on your console. Then drop in your fresh drive and format it on the Xbox. Don't lock the new drive (or at least you don't have to). Copy the games over FTP. For best FTP speeds, use an ethernet cord (not wifi), don't use XBMC as the FTP server app but instead use something like UnleashX because XBMC will give you slow FTP speeds, then there's also a few other little FTP tricks you should configure - see this thread for a list of those tricks.
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Mangraviti
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Re: Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by Mangraviti » Thu Feb 08, 2018 5:50 am

Thanks for all the detailed info, GoTeamScotch.

I have now sorted out somewhat like you described.

One question though: Although the temps seem to stay around 45ºC (safe enough), do you think that leaving the console receiving files over FTP for that long could be a problem? I mean, it was made in 2005 and it's not designed for that. It's kinda clean inside (not much dust but far from being spotless) and the fan seems to be working OK. And I don't know how much abuse it had from the previous owner. Lol. Just bought it for 15 GBP and softmodded it a few years ago and upgraded the drive today.

Thanks again.

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Re: Unlocking / Locking HDD

Post by Coldly-Indifferent » Thu Feb 08, 2018 2:56 pm

Long story short, there isn't a good reliable way to copy files to an Xbox HDD besides FTP. There are FATX file explorers such as xplorer360, but in my experience, xplorer360 chokes or crashes when dragging and dropping hundreds of GBs (hundreds of thousands of files) worth of files into a partition. If something doesn't copy successfully, you don't have a list of files that failed to copy like you do with FTP. Maybe other people have had more success here but I at least haven't.
Perfectly described and exactly my experience with Xplorer360 too and why I only use it for relatively small transfers.

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