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Xbox Mods

Essay by   •  January 4, 2011  •  Essay  •  768 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,153 Views

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"The popularity of the Xbox inspired efforts to circumvent the built-in hardware and software security mechanisms, a practice informally known as modding" (Wikipedia). There are two different types of Xbox users: the modders and everybody else. The modders take the Xbox and use its full potential while customizing it, while everybody else uses the Xbox to play games, watch movies, and listen to music. There are many ways to mod an Xbox, but some of the favorites are software, case, and hardware.

In the modding scene there are two well known ways to mod the Xbox's software functions. The modchip and the softmod are two of the main ways to mode the Xbox's software. Although the modchip is hardware based it is considered a software mod because it changes the software's functions. The modchip is a hardware based mod for "elite" (X-B-O-X.com) modders, while the softmod is for n00bs.

The modchip is one of the most commonly circulated mods for the Xbox. "A Modchip, a portmanteau of "Modifying Microchip" is a device used to circumvent the digital rights management of many popular game consoles, including those made by Microsoft (Xbox series), Sony (Playstation series), and Nintendo (Gamecube, Wii) for the purposes of playing back-up, imported, [. . .] homebrew games and/or applications" (Wikipedia). The reason people started to use Modchips is to "unlock" the full potential of the device. A Modchip works by being connected to a series of select holes and a d0 point on the motherboard; when the device is turned on the Modchip will take control of the system circumventing the original bios by using its own to boot the system, allowing the user to have almost complete control over the system.

Another popular mod is the softmod. The softmod is similar to the modchip except by one major difference, it is not hardware based. For people new to the modding scene, the softmod is the way to go; the softmod will allow the user to have "99%" (Xbox-Scene) of the features that a modchip has. The softmod works by an exploit in three games that allows the user to change the dashboard the Xbox uses to one of the user's choice. "I've always said it, and it bears repeating that a vast majority of exploit users eventually become modchip users, either through mishaps during the install of the exploits, the perceived clumsiness of the method, or the fact that a full chip provides the absolute maximum number of options to the user" (Xbox-Scene).

Whether it is just a simple paint job or a major surgical process, case mods are among the most common. Most people stick to the simple painting, jewel, and light mods, but others go all out and do the hardcore mods.

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