Hack your old Xbox – turn it into the perfect media player

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xbmc_alpha_screenshot.jpgThe old Xbox is a sensational machine. Well, it’s a PC in a box you can put under your TV, which makes it ideal for use as a media player – but you have to hack it open first.

A guide over on Lifehacker goes though the step-by-step means to “softmod” your old Xbox, a process that dumps the official Microsoft dashboard and lets you, as they say, “go totally custom” without the need for a hardware modchip.

Once you get Xbox Media Center on it your old Xbox becomes a perfect media machine, able to stream downloaded movies from your PC and show them on your TV via your home network. Most file formats are supported, including DivX and Xvid, making it perfect for watching all that pirated stuff you’ve got sitting there in your Bittorrent folder.

Obviously this means you’ve voided your warranty – but Microsoft would probably only laugh at you if you phoned up and asked to speak to someone about a broken five-year-old Xbox anyway.

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Gary Cutlack