I’m going to show you all my perfect way of backing up your games. I’ve been doing it this way for ages, and have never had any failures.
Before we start, I must make you aware that MODIFYING YOUR CONSOLE FIRMWARE IS ILLEGAL, and that you have to modify it to play backups. The backups you create MUST be for PERSONAL USE ONLY, any other distribution or use is possibly illegal, and in breach of Copyright and DMCA laws in some countries.
Secondly, I CANNOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE for any legal action taken against you from you distributing backups from following my guide, for any failures during flashing Kreon firmware or burning backups, or simply because you don’t understand what you’re doing.
All advice in this article is followed AT YOUR OWN RISK. If your console decides to burst into flames after being modified, that’s not my problem, sue the hackers who created the firmware! Or if you like fighting useless battles, sue Microsoft (they’ll probably laugh you into a prison cell!)
Disclaimer over….. If I haven’t scared you (scaring you wasn’t my intention!), read on……
DVD Burner on its own IDE/SATA Channel
I recommend your burner be on its own chain. This reduces the risk of buffer underruns and any other errors. having a hard drive, especially the one where images are stored for burning, or being read from, on the same cable, is a no-no.
I use SATA, so each device has its own cable, and is not daisychained.
No other programs running
This keeps your CPU nice and free, and keeps your RAM to a maximum. Your RAM is where data is stored as it’s being copied from the HDD to the burner, so if you’re running stressful programs, your burner is going to feel it, and you run the risk of ruining the disc, and DL discs are still not cheap throwaways! The flow of data needs to be constant.
Use a dual core CPU
This gives you more oomph, as any load is shared equally between cores. Self explanatory, really!
Plenty of RAM
This is a must, as I mentioned before, your RAM is the buffer between the hard drive, and the burner. Top quality RAM will make sure the data stays clean all the way from your HDD to your burner. 32 bit users should have no more than 3GB, as 32-bit can’t address more than this, and 64-bit can have as much as you want!
Defragmented hard drive
Think of your hard drive as my favourite analogy. A child’s bedroom. As toys (files) get played with (accessed/saved), they get strewn all around. This maeans the drive takes longer to find files, which can result in buffer under-runs. The files need to be re-organised into their correct places for accesses to be fast.
1. Obtain a Samsung SH-D162C PC drive with Kreon
This step is really important. Normal PC drives can’t read the structure or security sectors (SS) of a 360 disk. The Kreon firmware is modified so that this Samsung drive will. The Kreon firmware will not work for other drives. I recommend you get one pre-flashed, I did my own, but that’s out of the scope of this tutorial. There are IDE & SATA versions available now, I got mine on launch, and it was only IDE at the time, so take your pick.
Once you’ve installed the drive, and flashed it (if it wasn’t already), move on..
2. Download and install Xbox Backup Creator
This is by far the easiest tool out there for doing backups, and is almost a single click. Download it from HERE and extract it somewhere. You’ll need ImgBurn installed too, so go grab a copy and install it BEFORE running XBC.
NOTE: If you’ve got a blank DVD-DL in your burner drive, the following error may come up. Don’t worry about it, it’s only because it’s trying to read a blank disc:
If you take the blank disc out, the error doesn’t appear. So, insert the 360 game you want to copy into your Samsung Kreon drive, and run XBC:
Make sure your Samsung Kreon drive is selected in the top drive list, as my SH-D162 is here. Note it does not say what Kreon version firmware is installed, just TS05, which is the Samsung firmware that the Kreon is based on. I have the latest Kreon in my drive, which is v1.00.
In the main status window, it says “Bytes used: 5.32MB”. DON’T worry, the disc is being read correctly, this is just the DVD partition that displays the “To play this disc, please insert it into an Xbox 360 console”, as this is all the PC itself can see.
Next, on the Read tab, under Image Style, choose Complete Backup, then hit Start. Sometimes the Start button is greyed out, flick between the tabs, and it should appear:
CAUTION: If you miss this step, and the Current Partition is selected, you’ll end up with just the DVD partition, which is useless!!
When you click Start, a dialog will pop up asking you for an image filename, and where to save it. My test game was Flatout Ultimate Carnage, saved into an “xbox” folder on my desktop:
Choose your folder and name, then hit Save. It’ll then start copying the image. To prove my point about the DVD partition earlier, here’s what I deliberately did:
I deliberately saved to a partition with not enough space to get this to come up. It needs 7.4GB, so it is copying the FULL game. So, here’s it working correctly:
It will also create a .dvd file. You MUST use this when burning the game later with ImgBurn. It is the layerbreak file, and without it, the partitions won’t match, resulting in an unplayable coaster. DO NOT select the ISO!
Follow me, and you’ll be fine!!
Next, should be when all is done!
Step 3: Burn your game to disc using ImgBurn!
ImgBurn is a great program. It has flawlessly burned discs for me with no problems. As long as you select the .dvd layerbreak file when selecting the image, it will burn fine. Using the ISO directly will fail.
First off, insert your blank DVD-DL (Verbatim, always Verbatim, where possible. I have used AONE in this tutorial, as they are my second favourite). Start ImgBurn, to be greeted by this screen:
Click “Write image file to disc”, and go to the folder you created your image. I’m finishing off a burn of Forza 3 here, instead of my Flatout earlier:
Select the .dvd layerbreak file, this is REALLY IMPORTANT:
Click Open. Then make sure 4x is selected as a burn speed:
After verifying your burner is correct, click the big icon of an image to disc on the left of the burn speed, and away she goes!! Until it completes, you will then be presented (hopefully!) with this dialog:
All done! Insert into your Xbox, and play away!
Note: This tutorial covers YOUR OWN backups. Backups downloaded from the internet will need to be verified by abgx360. A tutorial on this is to follow soon…