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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2002 3:21 pm    Post subject: Gentoo on the Xbox? Reply with quote

I dont have one, but i saw THIS link about a suse8.0 port for hte Xbox and wondered if anyone had considered it?

I guess it is basically a pc, its got an ethernet port and usb for keyboard and mouse....

Of course a gentoo xbox would detroy any other port in its path!

What do you guys think?[/url]
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2002 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oops, this was posted by me, i forgot to log in!
if any admin wants to change it to make me look less stupid id me most thankful
:D
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2002 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it could work, the problem is: if have no xbox :-(

There is a xbox-linux-install iso on their site which should enable you to build iso's for other distributions :-)


So by now there are SuSE and Debian running on the xbox, gentoo is missing.



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2002 4:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe the Xbox also needs a mod chip soldered to the main board to let it run unsigned programs.

From the video I saw it looks like current Linux port boots from CD. It would be really cool to boot from the internal hard drive and replace all the instant on Microsoft graphics. I'm sure that will come sooner or later.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2002 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since the Xbox is just basically a PC as already mentioned, surely all that needs to be changed is the BIOS. Installing Gentoo (or any other Linux distro) will sirely overwrite the MBR of the internal HDD, leaving the just the BIOS in the way of booting and running unsigned software.
There must be someone who has an Xbox, a good knowledge of BIOS programming and a stamp programmer, on these forums.
If the above doesn't work, then I must be missing something crucial to the design of the Xbox, if I am please tell me. I don't actually have one so the design specs have never interested me.

This was actually posted by me, I just forgot to login.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2002 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Xbox is not exactly a PC there are architectural differences in memory.

This artcile explains it well:
http://www.eetimes.com/sys/uth/OEG20020326S0044
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2002 2:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

browny wrote:
This was actually posted by me, I just forgot to login.

I removed the duplicate.

Dunster wrote:
The Xbox is not exactly a PC there are architectural differences in memory.

browny wrote:
...surely all that needs to be changed is the BIOS

Well, changing the BIOS would be hard. What would be easier, though, would be a set of kernel patches to compensate for those architectural differences, which (AFAIK) is how those problems are being solved. (See, the kernel is open-source and easy to modify; the BIOS, on the other hand...)
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2002 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

delta407 wrote:

browny wrote:
...surely all that needs to be changed is the BIOS

Well, changing the BIOS would be hard. What would be easier, though, would be a set of kernel patches to compensate for those architectural differences, which (AFAIK) is how those problems are being solved. (See, the kernel is open-source and easy to modify; the BIOS, on the other hand...)

Sorry, I didn't mean that flashing the BIOS would sort out any architectural differences, I meant that the BIOS flash would make it possible to boot into Linux.

As for the BIOS not being open source, any one with a stamp programmer should be able to read off the code. Granted converting the code into something that a person can understand may be difficult, but the technology is there, it just requires a little patience.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2002 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This pages seems to outline what needs to be done. There is even $200,000 in prize money for this project:

http://xbox-linux.sourceforge.net/articles.php?aid=1&sub=Press

Here's the highlights:

Project A: Porting Linux to a modified Xbox:
Task 1: Replacement BIOS (software/hardware)
Task 2: Kernel and XFree drivers
Task 3: Kernel logic: FATX and miscellaneous
Task 4: XBE bootloader
Project B: Xbox hack without any hardware modification

A total of US$ 100,000 will be awarded for the completion of each of the two projects.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2002 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My brother's got a X-Box.

I'll try next weekend, if I can install Gentoo on it.

I'll post my results. ;)

chrlen
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2002 10:11 pm    Post subject: Gentoo on XBox Results Reply with quote

Hi,

I will be sorting this out next week, so will post my findings on how easy it is, and what kit is needed, and will see if I can get it online somewhere serving apache ....

Sorry missed this post, would of posted my other thread here otherwise ..

"High End Dell / Compaq in Live Enviroments, now xbox fun .."

Thanks
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 27, 2002 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have an Xbox that I am willing to port with as well, but need to get the mod chip installed first of all ;)
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2002 12:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought I might add that while I don't have an X-Box, I have read the article by the MIT Student which pointed out the X-Box actually has two BIOSes. One is a fake/dummy BIOS, and the other is the real one. I'm not quite sure of Microsoft's intention with the Fake BIOS....Damn clever if you ask me, since they put that BIOS right where people would first look, while the Real BIOS was tranferred on bootup over the AMD HyperTransport Bus, I believe between the North && Southbridges.

Plus, Microsoft is releasing a newer X-Box model that will be incompatible with any existing mod chips out there. How long it'll take for the modders to make a new chip is unknown, but Microsoft is apparently very interested in hiring someone who is very knowledgeable in these chips to see if they can mod-proof their X-Box (and any furture hardware devices they make).

--Kumba
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2002 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kumba wrote:
Plus, Microsoft is releasing a newer X-Box model that will be incompatible with any existing mod chips out there. How long it'll take for the modders to make a new chip is unknown,

It is known. One week

--kurt
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2002 1:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So I *just* Discovered.

I must apologize......I actually assumed Microsoft actually knew for the briefest of moments how to build something secure. Perhaps I should check the food I ate for dinner -- there must've been some drugs slipped into it or something.

Man, I would pay money to see the look on the X-Box hardware team's faces when they hear about this.

--Kumba
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2002 1:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kumba wrote:
I must apologize......I actually assumed Microsoft actually knew for the briefest of moments how to build something secure.

C'mon -- be fair. The problem is not how to build something secure, but how to build something secure that doesn't otherwise unduly increase the cost of manufacturing.

Face it -- there is no such thing as "perfectly secure". Every lock has a key, yadda yadda.

--kurt
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2002 2:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

klieber wrote:
Kumba wrote:
I must apologize......I actually assumed Microsoft actually knew for the briefest of moments how to build something secure.

C'mon -- be fair. The problem is not how to build something secure, but how to build something secure that doesn't otherwise unduly increase the cost of manufacturing.

Face it -- there is no such thing as "perfectly secure". Every lock has a key, yadda yadda.

--kurt



I was implying a bit of sarcasm :P

You make a valid point though, still, I am quite sure someone at either Microsoft, or nVidia is gonna take heat for this.

--Kumba
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2002 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Microsoft is just using XBox to home their DRM experience. Its tough to do DRM when the processor doesn't support it. But when the next generation processors come out it will be harder to crack the DRM.

The best solution is to have an open platform that is not Playstation or XBox. This would really be tough to compete with. But its hard to get momentum going for an open platform.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2002 11:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

btw:
my xbox is running gentoo..
installation is pretty easy..


    boot with ed's live cd
    follow gentoo installation rules
    skip grub configuration
    either compile your own kernel and create a boot cd (tools are in the packages.tar.bz2)
    or just boot with ed's hddboot cd


that's it ;-)
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2002 7:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dude - I'm keen to find out about gentoo on the x-box - oculd you post some info !?
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2002 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i'll cut & paste in here what I wrote to you as a private message:
I think I forgot to mention that you need a modded xbox and a xbox with a 10GB harddrive (some only have 8). you will be happier with it when you upgrade your harddrive. I put a 80 GB one in mine..

start here

Let the install script do its magic. When the installation advice says "The installation is done." switch to the gentoo installation, reformat your root partition (btw. I don't have separated root and boot partitions) and download the stageX tarball.
Unpack and follow the gentoo installation advice.
Skip the kernel, instead copy the kernel and modules from the debian boot cd.
Creating your own boot cd and kernel is a bit harder, since you need to make your own initrd.

Good luck
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2002 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ahh hehe just read your post ;)

any reliable information on how to mod the x-box ? I have an eeprom writer if that helps me :)
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2002 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

you need a mod chip for the xbox before you can start to install linux.
The reason is simple. MS signs its code and unsigned code isn't allowed to be run on the xbox. The modchip lets you do just that (and a few other things, too).
And since nobody from Microsoft is so kind and signs it :twisted:, you must have a modchip first.

There are a few commercial ones out there (although MS just started some actions agains Lik-Sang), but if you know how to solder well, there is also the "homebrew" version, which costs you a lot less.

A good source is xboxhacker.net which will hopefully be up pretty soon again. Or just feed google with modchip homebrew and xbox.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2002 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks mate,

my brother is a professional solderer (electronics engineer) - he builds satellites and works on submarines and the like, so I'm sure the "home-brew" will be just fine :D

I'll go hit those sources - thanks for your help thus far

and I'm thinking I'll beef up my x-box hdd to an 80gig :)
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2002 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sorry, one other question, can you get the x-box to display on a normal crt monitor ? or do you have to use it on a tv ?

if so, anyone have a link or info that shows how to do it ?

thanks!
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