Microsoft Bans Xbox 360 Pirates from Own Hard Disks


Microsoft’s recent mass banning of users of modded consoles from Xbox Live apparently did not go far enough – banned users are now learning that they can no longer use their console’s HDD for any meaningful purpose, with installation to the drive no longer possible on a blacklisted console…

An abridged description of the changes:

Firstly, and most obviously, you cannot connect to Xbox Live on this console any more. This means no more game updates (aka title updates), XBLA games, marketplace content, netflix/sky player and so on. There is no way around this, all online capabilities are now disabled PERMANENTLY.

Hard Drive installs are now disabled on the banned console. This means any disk-based games you have will no longer play off of the hard drive.

There is no way to fix this, that functionality is simply gone from the banned 360.

Windows Media Centre functionality is disabled. It is still possible to stream video/music content via the video library.

So, in summary:

Your Banned 360:

* Cannot go on Xbox Live

* Cannot install games to the HDD

* Cannot use Windows Media Centre extender

* Cannot be used to get achievements from backups without corrupting your profile

With no warranty, Internet access, or even hard drive, it might have been kinder just to “brick” the consoles and render them entirely inoperative…

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    Comment by Anonymous
    04:47 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    all original harddrives are over priced under sized pieces of shit anyway. get an external drive and format it to FAT32 and youre good.

    Avatar of Fonzer
    Comment by Fonzer
    05:15 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Region lock=Discrimination

    Avatar of Fonzer
    Comment by Fonzer
    05:19 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    but also when you see what kind of censorship people can do to other games that are not meant outside japan then

    Region lock=protection?

    Avatar of Fonzer
    Comment by Fonzer
    05:42 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    or wish to only sell it to your people and make money there and not around the world

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:06 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    All I can say is HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!
    When will people realise the they where stupid for buying anything that is made by or owned by Microsoft.
    LMFO OWNED!!! Sales will drop even more, and is sony laughing their ass off as MS scroored on owngoal. xD

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    06:20 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I still haven't been caught. =P
    You can only get banned for having a bad rip of a game.
    There's a bad rip of MW2 going around, and people think it's real.
    That's why there's been more bans than usual lately.
    Microsoft is using this to their advantage to scare some people. (;

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:06 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I've seen lots of "fuck the pirates", and "we pirate 'cause we want free stuff"-type posts. Game makers howl at all the money they say they are losing due to people making and using illegal copies of their games.

    An observation: there's a place I go to where I borrow books, music CDs, movie DVDs, etc. - for free!

    It's called "the public library".

    I don't hear book publishers howling about how letting people borrow books from libraries without paying for them is costing them tons of money.

    Hmmm . . .

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:08 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Some libraries are even doing GAME RENTALS for free now, so they could say that libraries are helping with 'game pirating'.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:34 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    False. You still need to return the game to the library after a week or two... and if you don't, they'll charge you the price of the game. That is NOT piracy. That is lending.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:32 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Hey, it's still the frigging same thing. Microsoft is only getting paid ONCE for a game, and then it is being lent out to 10 or 20 other people.... which means that on a 50 dollar game, they are 'losing' 500 dollars to 1000 dollars in sales in most cases.

    Nothing different from the above than from piracy, Microsoft still isn't getting the money out of the people who are renting/borrowing the thing from the library.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:31 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Hm, I see you have a point there. I guess the answer to that is the public libraries have an obligation to make the citizens more cultivated, thru books and other media. I mean, they don't stock pr0n or Playboy in the library. And the number of copies in circulation isn't great enough to put the publishers out of business.

    Avatar of ドラゴン
    Comment by ドラゴン
    05:46 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    This type of thing really motivates me to become a career black hat hacker =/

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:03 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    This is why I like non-online consoles without all of that stuff. There's a possibility that the other companies could do the same type of thing with their semi web-based consoles if they wanted to (cutting you off and such), but no matter what they say, they can't touch your PS2 or your Gamecube. Of course, I'm not a pirate, so none of this stuff applies to me anyway....

    Avatar of maxchain
    Comment by maxchain
    06:57 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Ouch, used buyer beware.

    Avatar of Apache
    Comment by Apache
    06:17 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    It's a bit concerning, if I read this right, if you buy a pre-owned console there's a chance your buying a paperweight that streams audio? :D

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:46 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    YEP! And that's what is going to get Microsoft in a shitload of trouble.... the aftermarket sellers, who will have modified their consoles and then sell them online to 'smucks' who do not know they are modified.

    I see a BIG OLD LAWSUIT in Microsoft's future, and it's going to cost them BILLIONS if the people wish to be 'nasty' about this.

    It's as I have told people MANY MANY MANY MANY MANY MANY MANY times....... you are not allowed to break into someone's home because you think they have stolen your computer, so why should someone be allowed to basically 'break in' to your game console, say "MODIFIED! PIRATE!" and then make it a paperweight.... answer: NO REASON!

    It goes against NUMEROUS laws, and those TOS agreements that supposedly "allow it".... NOT ENFORCEABLE IN COURT! The only reason people keep on pointing at them.... they have never been challenged in a court of law, so the idiots out there keep on saying "They haven't been challenged therefore they are valid!" They said that same bullshit about the anti-homosexual laws and 'sodomy' laws.... and guess what? When they were finally challenged, what did the courts say? UNCONSTITUTIONAL! (sing that last word with me in four part barbershop... actually, nine part Supreme Court harmony)

    Avatar of g0rth0r
    Comment by g0rth0r
    08:19 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Bah, modded 360 RRoD'd like 2 days before the ban wave, so I don't know if I'm banned or not. It doesn't really matter since I'll be getting a new xbox anyway.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:26 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    that's why i love the PS3 the games are region free
    so if a game is not in the States i simply buy an import form Japan

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    Avatar of Charkan
    Comment by Charkan
    08:29 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Banned 360 = new linux workstation

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:01 11/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Only if you can get a unit which doesn't have the newer MS patches applied.

    Felix Domke, Michael Steil, Free60 Project; 11 August 2009

    Dangerous Xbox 360 Update Killing Homebrew

    On Tuesday, Microsoft has released an Xbox 360 software update that overwrites the first stage bootloader of the system. Although there have been numerous software updates for Microsoft's gaming console in the past, this is the first one to overwrite the vital boot block. Any failure while updating this will break the Xbox 360 beyond repair. Statistics from other systems have shown that about one in a thousand bootloader updates goes wrong, and unless Microsoft has a novel solution to this problem, this puts tens of thousands of Xboxes at risk.

    It seems that this update is being done to fix a vulnerability already known to the Free60 Project. This vulnerability has been successfully exploited to run arbitrary code, and a complete end user compatible hack has been in development for some time and is planned to be released on shortly. It will allow users to take back control of their Xboxes and run arbitrary code like homebrew applications or Linux right after turning on the console and without the need of a modchip, finally opening up the Xbox 360 to a level of hacking as the original Xbox.

    Because of the dangerousness of the update and the homebrew lockout, the Free60 Project advises all Xbox 360 users to not update their systems to the latest software version. The Project website at will provide the latest information on this ongoing topic, including the final hack software.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:03 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    i think people should remember how many red rings of death we have put up with, i was lied to from the very start, f*ck m$, all xboxers should play copies save money and buy ps3 n games for FREE online play and content

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:32 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    HOHOHO is like a 4chan ban...only retards have a ban LOL..

    ...too bad for who have modified their consoles 'cuz falls in save money-inversion trap

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:06 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    The ban waves they've done up until now haven't hurt their sales, what makes you think they will this time? Just because Artefact posts something doesn't actually mean it's new.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:09 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Unless the ToS explicitly said that the console could be disabled the "you agreed to the ToS" argument does not fly. I also believe that in the US there is a law allowing legal backups of games you own. These people probably have good justification to take MS to court.

    Whether they could win or not (money wins over truth every time) is another story.

    Comment by Anonymous

    It doesn't say your console could be disabled, but it does essentially say they (M$) can't be held responsible for any damages to the console if you don't use it as agreed upon in the terms of service.

    If you decide to modify your console, you're already breaking the ToS. And as such, you bare the risk of having your console bricked.

    Here's a fancy analogy: if you decide to modify your toaster to shoot laser beams, that's up to you. It's your toaster. But if the appliance suddenly stops toasting bread for whatever reason, you don't have a right complain to the toaster company since you didn't use the product as intended. Going back, the Xbox was NEVER intended to play pirated/copied games.

    Strange how some people complain that it's M$'s fault that their Xbox is essentially bricked. They refuse to acknowledge that it's actually THEIR fault for not following the rules and deciding to mod their consoles, despite repeated warnings from M$.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:36 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Facetious argument. The toaster argument doesn't fly, because you are changing a bunch of stuff in it and changing it's PRIMARY PURPOSE.

    With modding an XBox360, you are not doing that in the slightest, and unless Microsoft does something like this asinine bullshit, your console will keep on working.... FOREVER, in almost all cases, unless the hardware fails, which it could do on an UNMODIFIED console.

    There is a difference between 'act of dog/god' and someone coming into your home, scanning your console/computer, deciding that you have an 'illegal version' and bricking your console/computer!

    TOTALLY FRIGGING DIFFERENT, and the law and order loonies like you just cannot get that. They think "TOS IS SACRED! LAW IS SACRED!" and shut off their brains.

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    02:02 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    pirates just got assraped.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:59 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    This is why you should only game on the PC, gentlemen. Consoles suck, always have, always will.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:53 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Wait, the Sega Genesis/Megadrive and the SNES were fine consoles!

    Avatar of AsakuraZero
    Comment by AsakuraZero
    05:18 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    i wish to know if i upgrade my hdd with a non-MS hdd (using the same brand/model hdd but cheaper)then i will get banned too =s? its a mod after all

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:02 11/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    OK OK, i've had modded console for a long time and i accept the ban, i know i've screwed lots of money out of this with back up games over the years.
    This is not the way to win a console war though as i know a lot of others who will not be getting new consoles and are switching to ps3 (slighty more reiable) i will not be though, i'l just sit playing off-line, no way am i gonna give $Gatesy£ any more money, its already my third console (first one not modded RROD)
    And whats with wrecking th HDD too...MS are as popular as the HD DVD.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:28 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Just a question: If you have a piracy-modded X-360 and use original games for online playing... Still enter in the blacklist of hell or not?

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:36 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    rule is any mod = ban

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:40 25/10/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    lol, consolefags.

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    17:58 02/04/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    "all online capabilities are now disabled PERMANENTLY."
    "There is no way to fix this, that functionality is simply gone from the banned 360."

    As long as all the physical parts are fine, someone will find a way to hack them to work again.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:32 10/12/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    tl:dr, What Microsoft is doing is actually illegal because of US Property Rights laws.

    Microsoft really didn't think this out. Once they do this the modder will just pawn their system to GAMESTOP since it's useless now, and the person who buys it from there will be completely outraged that their console no longer works!

    To be honest, I'm surprised people aren't suing over this, its actually violates property rights regardless of any EULA agreement. Because they paid for ownership and didn't "Lease" the console, the owner legally has the right to modify any property belonging to them. Which does in fact cover modifying software on a console, just like it does when modifying a PC.

    Microsoft can however legally ban the user's static IP address from using their online services, but does not have the legal standing to infringe upon the user's rights to use the console- excluding cases of experiments like alpha/beta tests, in which case a separate console, owned by Microsoft and not the user, is still required for them to legally take away those rights.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:51 18/12/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Microsoft is illegally infringing upon intellectual rights!

    Microsoft has NO right whatsoever to personally send disabling software and destroy hardware on a 360 that a user has brought!
    Microsoft has NO business banning modded systems until it can prove that those modded systems are being used for pirating!
    Microsoft needs to be SUED.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:11 12/06/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm surprise they didn't do something like this earlier. Would really suck if I had an Xbox360, good thing I don't.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:54 18/12/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Microsoft should reimburse every person who brought their RROD garbage.
    Now Microsoft walks around as the big bad pirate police.
    Way to loose your customers microlosers

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:38 23/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    the real assholes are those who modded their consoles and then brought them back to the store to be resold. i got hit TWICE. f**kers!

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:45 12/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    screw modders and hackers

    if i have to work to buy games they should too

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:36 12/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I don't have a problem with this really I wouldnt expect to pirate a game and be able to play it on line on pc this is due to cd keys and now this for xbox what did they expect i mean really did they not read the TOS?

    unless they banned thoose who manualy increased their hard drive sizes instead of accepting the highway robbery that is the official drives. if so then fuck you MS

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:35 14/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    microsoft should stick to pcs

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:40 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Hm. Serves them right. Dirty software pirates, violating the EULA that they agreed to in the first place. A thief by a different name is still a thief.

    Mysterious Voice: "I agree with your statement, but you're directing it to the wrong person. Pirates are simply people who are too poor to purchase a $60 game for whatever reason. They're simply getting the power to play the game, something that Micro$hit would deny them. And to top it off, the customer has to pay for the damage. If that isn't thievery I don't know what is."

    Tch. There you go again falling for the same freudian excuses. Have you ever contemplated the fact that they're lying and you're simply buying the bait? Also, do you complain about having to pay for the plumber to fix the plumbing?

    Mysterious Voice: "I'd simply fix it myself, just like I'd mod the console to remove the ban."

    Oh, really? Well here's an interesting thing for you to contemplate: What if Sony were the one doing this kind of thing. I assure you you'd turn on them quite quickly.

    Mysterious Voice: "That's assuming Sony would do that sort of thing, which they won't because the PS3 is basically impervious."

    Oh, just you wait...

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:06 10/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    You must seek psychiatric help if you´re hearing voices in your head.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:59 12/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Mysterious Voice: "Oh, I'm sure he needs psychiatric help for a little more than that..."

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