Xbox Hacking – Xbox Crystal & Xbox Media Centre XBMC

Latest Picture of my Xbox setup.

And a Macro of the xbox & Chip controller.

I started Xbox hacking back in October 2004. I bought a Crystal Xbox for £100. I wanted to get an older model due to the more complex chipping procedure of the 1.6 motherboards in new machines but after aloof thought I decided to go with the new crystal machine. I then purchased a Xecuter 2.6 Mod chip from Kaneaction who offered a great service. The mod chip fitting itself was a nightmare. Took me almost 4 hours to make all the solder points and rebuild the LPC . Also, I lost one of the copper tracks (the heat from the soldering iron destroyed the track) so I had to rebuild the track using wire. After the chip was installed i ripped out the original 8GB Western Digital HD and fitted a 250gb Samsung drive . I then booted the Xbox from Slayers Evox Boot disk and installed Evox, avalaunch & XBMC.

Just recently I removed Evox and set the new CVS build of XBMC as my main dashboard. This was for many reasons but mainly the fact that I use the Xbox more as a media centre of late than a gaming machine. I am able to play Divx and DVD on the xbox from my armchair using the remote, I have the Xbox networked to my media server for watching films. I also have my entire MP3 collection on the Xbox hard disk(about 100GB of MP3). This allows the xbox to be used as a stand-alone Jukebox with a great UI. The new builds of XBMC also allow python scripting. I have a script which random plays a play list when the Xbox boots, so I just turn the machine on and music plays. I also have Game trailers & Move trailers streamed directly to the Xbox for my viewing. Perhaps the best script I use is the Yahoo! Launch script, which streams almost every single music video to the xbox on demand at high res. Like MTV, without the adverts and crap music vids. Similar to this is the shoutcast scripting which allows thousands of free streaming radio stations to be played back. The scripts I use are included below

Yahoo Launch Script here

Quicktime Move trailers here

Game trailers here

My own autoexec and randomplay scripts here (place autoexec in XBMC route and the randomplay scripts in the scripts folder) (Edit the autoexec and randomplay files in notepad to represent your file structure)

Below are some screenshots of XBMC

My XBMC Main Menu

My System Info pane

My games uploaded onto the xbox

XBMC playing a selection of mpeg music videos

Music Videos Current Playlist

Main Menu overlayed over video

Weather.com Weather info for me.

Configuration screen.

John Large

My name is John Large. I am a Web Developer, E-commerce site owner & all round geek. My areas of interest include hardware hacking, digital privacy & security, social media & computer hardware. I’m also a minimalist in the making, interested in the Tiny House movement & the experience economy along with a strong interest in sustainability & renewable energy. When I’m not tapping on a keyboard or swiping a smart phone I can be found sampling great coffee, travelling the world with my wife Vicki (who writes over at Let’s Talk Beauty) & generally trying to live my life as unconventionally as possible.

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