Instructables
Picture of Upgrading the Xbox 360 hard drive CHEAP!
With all the new content for download and the ability to copy games to the hard drive, 20GB just would not cut it. So I decided to invest in an upgrade. I like to do a lot of research into things before I just jump in, especially expensive purchases.

A retail 120GB hard drive for the Xbox 360 cost around 130$. That seems somewhat expensive to me since I can get a 1TB hard drive for that much. I did some searching and finally found an answer I could live with.

A "do it yourself" 120GB Xbox 360 hard drive upgrade for $50!! NO MOD CHIP IS REQUIRED!

DISCLAIMER: Do this mod at your own risk! You could damage your Xbox or your computer. You could lose your data, get banned from Xbox Live, void your warranty, the authorities take you to prison, Steve Balmer will hold you down while Bill Gates spits in your eye, yada, yada... Don't blame me if any of this happens!

Seriously, I did not have much on my hard drive that I would mind losing. This will void the warranty on the hard drive. I just paid for another 13 months of Xbox Live, so I was a little nervous... but I have not been kicked yet!

Some games have content and save games that are media locked. This means that it will not work if it has been moved to another media (new hard drive, memory card, etc.). I have not experienced it yet, but I have heard reports of it from others.
 
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manyu4 years ago
Whether you have a Mac or PC, right now on your computer there is information that is both personal and private. And you probably want it to stay that way. These traces of your private data are easily accessible by anyone with the right software. Even if you have deleted these files, the traces of them still exist and they can be restored and used by anyone. This information includes your credit card #'s, emails, contact info, passwords and usernames, and even tax returns. Identity thieves love to find old, discarded computers and hard drives because they know that can get enough information out of the average hard drive to steal someone's identity and get all kinds of information about them. You know your hard drive will end up somewhere someday when you upgrade your computer so make sure you digitally shred these personal files permanently.
w00t3r manyu3 years ago
Your reply has nothing to do with the topic at hand.
abadfart3 years ago
so i got a drive off Craigslist and the person who modded it forgot to put the bc partition on do you have any suggestions on how to fix this
MRedu3 years ago
This is an excellent idea! Nicely explained too. However my problem at the moment is my xbox has suffered from the RROD 3 lights :/ I might buy a new slim 360 though and try this hack/mod. I'll just hunt for a 2TB cheap hard drive.
abadfart3 years ago
i realy want to drop a 1tb drive in to my xbox... i would never run out of space
it is very easy to create a bootable flash drive( I used a 4GB kingston) I used a program called boot manager to create it. I then unzip Hddss.zip and the firmware update to the flash drive as well as hddhackr.zip.
Most computers have a key either F11 or F12 to enter the boot menu from which you can select the drive you want to boot from(much simpler than going into BIOS), just check on the start up screen to see which key takes you to the boot menu
lasvhughes3 years ago
ummm... you can buy a xbox 250g HDD all day long for $40 on ebay
dowd954 years ago
WHen I am in my BIOS there is no floppy option or USB option...only "removable" is that what I need? What is it?
makin1 dowd953 years ago
Yes you are looking for removable. My BIOS is set up like that as well. Removable is USB.
junits15 dowd954 years ago
probably every computer's bios is different
prodigy0073 years ago
It would be good to have an alternative to using a few specific kinds of drives not even shipped with xbox. Not everyone has those types of western digital drives.
egammoc3 years ago
when i downloaded xplorer xtreme 2 and extracted the rar norton found a trojan horse virus! dont download these programs from here. best to search google for them
astrong03 years ago
if you were t save a game on this drive after you flashed it could you run the game w/o the disk?
Michaelb774 years ago
can i use my laptop 250GB and use it in the Xbox 360 slim trying to save. i dont want to get band off xbox live.
as long as its western digital brand you can
egammoc4 years ago
what about a 1tb caviar green western digital sata HDD?
this is also how u fix backwards compatibility. not much point now though cuz they disabled xbox 1 live!!! :(
Incredible tutorial!!! I started with an arcade, ordered the hard drive and a case from hong kong. Within a half an hour of getting both, I downloaded everything, I made a bootable flashdrive (using an earlier link), hacked the hard drive, and put in in the kase. I had a new 120gb hard drive for 40 dollars in 30 minutes. Great. I would recommend using a bootable flash drive instead of a floppy. You can also use 250gb hard drives.
lukeman30004 years ago
Can you use a sata express card in a laptop?

http://www.newegg.com/product/product.aspx?item=N82E16839200006

I'm talking about to flash the hard drive, not to simply transfer files.
notkeith4 years ago
here is a link that helped me make a usb boot stick without a floppy drive.  BobMan is right on one count, most of the methods linked to are not terribly helpful, considering I would not be making a usb stick to boot from if I had a floppy drive.  www.biosflash.com/e/bios-boot-usb-stick.htm
MegaSam4 years ago
Has Anyone tried all this with a 250 gb hard drive?
Now that Microsoft has released a 250 gb drive, you can find the proper hddss.bin file with a quick google search.  It should work fine as long as you buy the right hard drive.
lateraluis4 years ago
Im stil thinking of doing this mod, have any one get banned after upgrading his HDD with this method?
finally got around to doing this, updated everything, and it still works smoothly.  All updates applied, no banhammers issued.  Its a 3-5 beer job, depending on whether or not you have a floppy drive, usb drives take an extra step or two.
zigzagchris4 years ago
verry soon you will be able to plug in up to 16 gb of usb hard drive into bother of the usb drives. Not 120 gb :( but easy way for 32 gb if ur like me. I have 20 gb hard drive so 32 sounds like plenty
notkeith4 years ago
So, has anybody done this recently?  I finally got a 360 and was wondering if the joy of not giving Microsoft my money  (the system itself was a gift...) has been taken away by the ban hammer.
This can't ban you. You aren't hotswapping, softmodding or installing modchips. To the Xbox it looks like you bought an official drive upgrade.
Thanks.  That's what I figured, but I wanted to double check before I did it, after I paid for the year subscription to Live.
No problem. Enjoy your new HDD!

BobmanJCT4 years ago
Could you clear up how to boot from a USB drive?

The site is not very user friendly, and assumes you already understand a LOT that I doubt the average make user does. And, I personally didn't really want to shell out an extra $10 for a usb drive when I'm trying to do a money-saving mod.
I'm waiting for my drive to arrive in the mail, so I can't answer too many questions yet, except this one...

You boot from a usb drive changing your computers boot setting in the BIOS menu.  When you start up your computer, it should say something along the lines of "F2 to enter startup" (actual key may vary).  You press that key, and it will bring you to the BIOS setting screen, which has a key to instruct you on how to cycle through menus and change values. 

Cycle through the menus until you find the option to change the order your computer checks the drives to boot from, it is probably currently set to check the optical drive, then hard disk.  Instruct it to check the usb ports before the hard drive, and if you've properly configured the usb drive, it will boot from that.

And if you don't want to buy a flash drive, you could just borrow one from somebody. 
jbags4 years ago
 Hey, Thx for the guide!

I followed it and my 360 recognizes my new 120gb BEVT, however, it does not recognize the transferred files from my old HDD.

Stuck it in the 360 to format it, all partitions show, says 107 GB free space. all good.

After I transfer the files over, my 360 says nothing it on it, no savegames, no profiles, no nothing. yet says like 23 gb free of the 107gb...

help? any ideas?
jbags jbags4 years ago
 nvm i got it. I was not using the "extreme 2" version of xplorer360. switched the extreme 2 and now the drive works beautifully!!
limpach5 years ago
Would a solid state HDD work for this? Sitting in a group of programming friends this thought came up.
Can't see why not, looks the same to the Xbox
do you think this hard drive would work?

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Western+Digital+-+Scorpio+Blue+250GB+Internal+Serial+ATA+Hard+Drive+for+Laptops/9024147.p?id=1218012522486&skuId=9024147&st=Western%20Digital%20Caviar%20Blue%20BEVT&cp=1&lp=10
Yes, any laptop SATA hard drive should.
abadfart5 years ago
will this work with an IDE drive for the original Xbox??? 
no, its sata only.
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