[Xbox 360] How to Flash Your HDDSS.bin in Windows

Discussion in 'Xbox 360 Guides' started by Harcroft, May 20, 2011.

  1. Harcroft

    Harcroft Addict

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    First of all, this is NOT a method I would recommend for everyone as you can brick your drive or your computers' hard drives if you are careless. If you are trying to build a 360 drive from scratch see here first: How to hack a 250gb sata drive to work in the Xbox 360 and Xbox 360 Slim It is a fantastic tutorial written by InsaneNutter and should be used first. This tutorial is only for people who can launch HDDhacker, but it refuses to write to or read from your hard drive. This happens sometimes due to sector 16 being blank and HDDhacker thinking it's a failure to read, not a blank sector. Just make sure it's not your SATA controller first.

    This may allow you to use a non Western Digital hard drive in your 360. I have successfully done this to a Seagate model recently with no issues whatsoever. But don't count on it to work on every drive, and don't complain if you wreck your drive.

    Now with that out of the way, here's your standard disclaimer. If this tutorial works for you, great! If not, you either did something wrong, or you just have bad luck. Do not come complaining to me or blaming me if you break your hardware, you tried to modify it, not me.

    Anyway lets get to the good stuff!

    Things you will need:
    a hard drive you want to modify
    a hddss.bin appropriate to your hard drive
    a computer running Windows
    a hex editor, I used Hex Workshop (do not ask me how to pirate this software, buy it if you like it)
    a way to connect your hard drive to your computer (which you should already have)
    a bit of common sense

    For this tutorial I used a 250gb WD2500BEVS I salvaged from a dead laptop (Profit!). For my hddss.bin (signature file, security sector) I used the 250GB Hard Drive Security Sector available here. I used a USB Microsoft data transfer cable, but you could just as easily use the drive directly connected via SATA. In fact SATA is a better idea because you still have to create the partitions with HDDhacker. You can find that in the thread by InsaneNutter listed above. Finally I used Windows XP Professional 32bit. This should work in Vista or Windows 7 as well as long as you run your hex editor as administrator.


    Step 1) Connect your drive to your computer
    As stated above you can connect your new 360 hard drive to your PC in any manner that makes it visible as a device in Windows as seen below.
    [​IMG]
    The drive I'm modifying is highlighted.


    Step 2) Find and open your hex editor
    Find where you installed your hex editor and open it. Hex Workshop looks like this.
    [​IMG]


    Step 3) Find your hard drive
    In Hex Workshop, select the Disk dropdown menu and select Open Drive (or CTRL+D)
    In the Select box, switch to Physical Disks. The first time Hex Workshop is launched, it defaults to Logical Drives. So double check that you have selected Physical Disks.
    [​IMG]

    Your 360 hard drive will most likely be the last drive in your list, the size should also help you identify it. Be ABSOLUTELY sure you select your 360 hard drive on this step. If you select another drive, you could potentially lose all of the data or disable any other drive you modify.
    [​IMG]

    The Read Only box should not be selected if you wish to write a hddss.bin. If you're paranoid (or just extra careful) you can turn it on while creating your undo.bin. Just remember to turn it off again when writing your hddss.bin


    Step 4) Backup sectors 16-22
    Select the Disk dropdown menu again and choose Save Sectors.
    [​IMG]

    In the Target box, choose your backup filename and location. Most users should use undo.bin for ease of use with HDDhacker tutorials. I used hddss250.bin because the drive already had a 250gb hddss.bin on it from a previous modification.
    For Starting Sector use 16
    For Ending Sector use 22
    Results should say Sectors: 7 Size 3 KB. If it doesn't, you did something wrong.
    Click OK to create your undo.bin, it should only take one or two seconds.
    [​IMG]

    If you open the 250gb hddss.bin from digiex.net it will look like this:
    [​IMG]
    I opened the backup file I made in Hex Workshop, as you can see it's originally from a Hitachi drive, but works just fine on my WD drive.


    Step 5) Write sectors 16-22
    Make sure you disk is open with Read Only off this time, or you will not be able to write your sectors. Return to Step 3 if you opened your drive as Read Only.
    Select the Disk dropdown menu again.
    Choose Restore Sectors.
    [​IMG]

    For Source File choose the appropriate hddss.bin for your drive. For more information about the correct hddss.bin for your drive see InsaneNutters thread.
    Make sure you set sector 16 as the Starting Sector under Target Range.
    Results should once again read Sectors: 7 and Size 3 KB.
    [​IMG]

    Once you are sure you have the right hddss.bin and Starting Sector set, click Ok. Again this should only take 1 or 2 seconds to complete.


    Step 6) Return to InsaneNutter's awesome tutorial
    You have now backed up and written a 360 Hard Drive Security Sector to your 360 hard drive, but you still need to create the partitions with HDDhacker (or a FreeBoot console). Return to InsaneNutters thread as listed above to finish the modification.

    Once you're all done your drive should look something like this in the Memory menu on your 360.
    [​IMG]

    I find the Microsoft logo doesn't show up on FreeBoot consoles so it doesn't show up here. I apologize for the poor quality image; my capture card is lacking.

    I hope this tutorial helped, remember to see here FIRST as that is the safest method for modifying your hard drive.

    Enjoy!
     
    kalirob2k6, yaytaq, TNickxx and 7 others like this.
  2. InsaneNutter

    InsaneNutter Resident Nutter Staff Member

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    Nice tutorial Harcroft, hopefully this will be of help to anyone having issues with Hddhackr.

    I have added a link in the FAQ at the bottom of my tutorial.
     
  3. Harcroft

    Harcroft Addict

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    I kept promising to get it done, then forgetting again and again. So, I'm sorry it took so long. Please give it a try though, even just to test backing up your hddss.

    I'm also glad I managed to find time to squeeze this in. I'll try to get that Halo 2 fix up before I go to bed too. Thanks for the linkage in your FAQ.

     
  4. Harcroft

    Harcroft Addict

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    I don't know, it should work, you will have to try for yourself.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  5. Matthew Zarate

    Matthew Zarate Member

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    ok so i followed all the steps in your tutorial....when i go back to InsaneNutter's thread....do i still have to type [F] to flash firmware or go straight to press [C] to create Partitions 0/1/2/3

    thnks again for your help
     
  6. Harcroft

    Harcroft Addict

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    C to create partitions, as the firmware should already be written. I'll update it shortly.
     
  7. Matthew Zarate

    Matthew Zarate Member

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    Now When it says [Partition 0/2/3 created succesfully] do I wait until it says Turn off computer.....or just shut off computer because nothing is showing just a green blinking underscore....there's no other option to do anything.
     
  8. Harcroft

    Harcroft Addict

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    Yes you can just shut your PC down from there. You could easily have found that out by reading the hddhacker thread, or taking a few seconds to read the hddhacker readme file. Please read official documentation before asking attempting modifications. I also did say this tutorial required common sense.
     
    Skinson likes this.
  9. Shadowafs8

    Shadowafs8 New Member

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    Hey, I'm getting a "cannot open the source file with read permission". I'm sure "read only" isn't on and I'm getting this error. Anyway around it?
     
  10. palsforpals

    palsforpals New Member

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    I have a Seagate 250G HDD (ST9250315AS) and hence I'm trying this method instead of using hddhackr for flashing. I have followed the instructions from here for flashing using hex workshop.
    1.) I've used the Hitachi 250G HDDSS.BIN that is used in the linked tutorial to flash into Sector 16-22.
    2.) I have created partitions using hddhackr
    3.) The partitions can be detected using Xplorer360
    4.) Without any restoration of files or partitions, I've inserted the SATA HDD into the Xbox 360 slim's slot

    But the xbox 360 slim doesn't show the drive in the memory unit... just shows the built-in 4GB. Can you Harcroft please share how you were able to use the Seagate drive??
    Is there some step that I'm missing for the xbox360 slim to detect the drive??
     
  11. LeeClynch3

    LeeClynch3 Resident

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    @palsforpals It Wasn't A Seagate Drive It Was a Western Digital Hdd
     
  12. Dark Scyth

    Dark Scyth Moderator

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    Read the thread again.
     
  13. claudiuc

    claudiuc New Member

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    Hello,

    Doing it on other-than-WD drives is a no-go. I tried it with a Seagate drive and it seems that even if I write the 16-22 sectors and create the partitions, the XBOX still wouldn't recognize it. Also, all WD drives that are flashed via hddhackr are then seen by the computer (in both Windows and the BIOS) as Hitachi / Fujitsu (depending on the hddss.bin file used) and there's no way (yet) to flash the firmware of a non-WD drive with hddhackr. Other ways of modifying the firmware aren't really known to us mortals, as it implies modifying data in "negative" logical sectors.

    The xbox must be rejecting the drive when it sees it as Seagate at boot time. Too bad, would've been great to use non-wd drives laying around.
     
  14. LeeClynch3

    LeeClynch3 Resident

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    @Dark Scyth So It Does Sorry :)
     
  15. KropotovGosha

    KropotovGosha New Member

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    Thank you very muchfor showingthe possible.Just did the samewith Hitachi HTS542580K9SA00.
    But there is a significant difference, yesterday accidentally flashed a drive hdddhackr on big brother WD. He even changed its name to the BIOS Fujitsu, and here also was Hitachi. hmmm....

    After work, try to run it on your XBox and see what came of it

    p|s Sorry my Bad English
     
  16. KropotovGosha

    KropotovGosha New Member

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    hmm Arcade not view my HDD :(
     
  17. noface

    noface New Member

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    I can confirm that this method worked on my Hitachi 0J11562 640GB, thanks Harcroft!

    Actually it works in hddhacker as well, I verified both methods. When hddhacker says that it can only operate with WD drives, it asks you if you want to retry flashing. It then says that to resend the flash command, power your drive off/on after hitting enter. It sends a successful flash, all you have to do is restart hddhacker and enter the create partitions command.
    On a side note, I didn't send the undo.bin command so I'm not sure whether it works from hddhacker or not.
    But it does work using Harcroft's method!
     
  18. Rick

    Rick Moderator

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    if you don't have a undo.bin you might not be able to use your full 640gb
     
  19. noface

    noface New Member

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    You mean in case I ever want to use the HDD in a PC?
    Fortunately I got started by following Harcroft's Hex Editor method, and so I did manage to save the undo.bin. Just didn't get a chance to see if you can save it from hddhacker.
     
  20. Rick

    Rick Moderator

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    that should work then
     

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