Xbox 360 arrived, got bit by the Seagate 1TB bug

I was very happy to finally get my Xbox 360 so I could move my Media Center PC into the office. My UPS guy comes really late so by the time I got it and had a chance to set everything up, it was after 8 o’clock. Tuesday is a big recording night for us — my wife mostly — so I had to put off moving the XPS until after 11 when all the recordings were done. So I shut it down and moved it to the already prepared location, hooked it up to my Apple Cinema display — which just seems wrong — and turned it on. And would’nt you know it, it wouldn’t boot. Long story short, I got bit by the Seagate 1TB 7200.11 bug. To make matters worse I couldn’t even detect the drive to do the firmware update. So who knows how long it will take to RMA it and there goes all my recordings. For now I can record on my other drive, but with only 200GB of free space, it isn’t going to get me very far. I should’ve known better than to mess with computers when it was time to bed because everything was all said and done I got to sleep after 1am.

As for using the 360 as an extender, so far so good. I was able to find some discrete IR codes for on and off. Unfortunately as I suspected the fans are too loud, even when in the furniture, so I went ahead and ordered these replacements. I’ll let you know how that swap goes when I get it in. I find it hilarious that the fans were only $25, but the tools to replace them were $12. Oh well, $50 is a small price to pay for some peace and quiet while I watch TV. I also hook the 360 up to my kill-a-watt and was surprised to see that it draws over 100 watts while watching TV, which just seems crazy.

Overall I’m happy, I can finally easily turn off the overscan, I get my closet back, I can now tweak my Media Center from the comfort of my office chair and there isn’t a keyboard or mouse anywhere near my living room.

17 Responses to “Xbox 360 arrived, got bit by the Seagate 1TB bug”

  1. Andres says:


    Please post your results on switching out the fan. I am very interested in doing this and may follow your lead.

    BTW, I run my house completely off of extenders. I think you are going to like that approach a lot better.

    – Andres

  2. Ken P says:

    Ben, I truly hope the 360 works for you. It did not work for me. I saw a bit of instability in the pic with 1080i material. I would call it a subtle jittery-ness that I do not see with a linksys extender. Where it was most pronounced was with graphical vertical lines, like you would see in the graphics package in HD news. I tried EVERY setting in the video setup options. I am using HDMI. Component is not option for me for various reasons. A/B comparisions with the linksys and TiVo S3 confirm what I am seeing. Hopefully I am just extra sensitive to something others do not see….Good luck, and I really hope it works for you.

  3. Ben Drawbaugh says:

    As a general rule of thumb I don’t want the news so I prob’ won’t notice it — although I listen to it sometimes.

    I’m curious though, did you ever try setting the 360 to output 1080i? I know it seems backwards, but depending on your TV you may be better off making the 1080i>1080p conversion in your TV instead of in the Extender.

    Right now I’m using 1080p via HDMI, but only out of laziness. I plan to test the different options as soon as I can. This includes 1080i via HDMI and 1080i via component. The kuro has an excellent scaler so I’ll be surprised if I set the 360 to 1080p.

  4. Ken P says:

    I tried 1080i, 1080p, even 720p just to see. Flicker-y jitter that I appear to be sensitive to. Could be as simple as the combo of my TV (Samsung 1st gen LED DLP) and the 360. Who knows. I definitely see it though.

  5. Ben Drawbaugh says:

    Didn’t mean to infer that you didn’t see it, just asking what steps you took to resolve it.

    Of course you’ve cursed me now as I’m sure to look for it!
    Thanks alot 😉

  6. Ken P says:

    Try not to look for it. I almost didn’t post because I knew it would get in your head! I just freak when I feel like every bit is not looking as good as it possibly can. A Kuro is my next purchase, so I am spending that kind of scratch on a TV, my sources better giving me the absolute best possible pic. I hope it is my specific combo, and your 360/Kuro does not exhibit the problem. Fingers Crossed! (Better yet, don’t look for it!)

  7. Andrew says:

    (1) Ben, do you have a hard disk in your XPS 420’s Flex Bay?

    (2) It is unclear to me–your 420 has two hard disks in it, right? Which one failed…the one with Vista on it?

    (3) The 360’s remotes are RF; could you put the 360 in another room also (no noise in the viewing room)?

  8. Ben Drawbaugh says:

    Please, you know as well as I do that genie is out of the bottle, no way I can suppress my obsessive compulsive impulses enough to not look for it. 😉

  9. Ben Drawbaugh says:

    Not sure what a flex bay is, but at the very bottom of the case,just to the right of the HDD that was shipped with the 420 is another bay just like the one with the included HDD. That is where I have my second HDD.

    I have two HDDs in my 420, the 500GB that was included partitioned into three volumes (Vista system, Windows 7 system and a Data volume).
    In addition I added a 1TB drive that I use exclusively for recordings. This is the one that died. So I simply went into VMC settings and set it to record to the Data volume for now.

    I thought of that, but I control my 360 with a combination of IR and TCP and the device emitting (GC-100) the IR is in my living room. So I’d have to get another emitting device or extend the one I’m using now to my HA controller to move the 360 into another room.

    Believe me I thought of it, but decided to try to quiet it down first.

  10. Andy S says:

    I just nervously upgraded my firmware on my 1 TB 7200.11 this week. It’s also my TV recording drive. It fortunately upgraded just fine.

    I’m more concerned about how I’m going to do the 3 500 GB 7200.11s that reside in my WHS box. 🙁 One of them is the OS drive. I’m trying to decide if it’s worth trying to move data around to remove the two drives that do not house the OS from the pool, as I suspect that could take days to accomplish. I might just take the risk and unplug the drives and do one by one before rebooting the system.

  11. Andy S says:

    Meant to include that I got the Xbox IR codes into my main universal remote by cloning them from the WMC remotes I have. You have a remote option in the Xbox dashboard as to whether you want to allow a non Xbox specific remote to work or not.

    Some of the remotes do not have all the functions available in windows however, so I took a Harmony H659 (that I don’t use much) and downloaded those codes and then cloned them into my main non-Harmony remote. The one that comes to mind that I added that way was a “My Videos” button.

  12. Steve H. says:

    Ben — did you make sure you go the new lower-powered 360?

  13. Ben Drawbaugh says:

    No, I was too ignorant to know there was such a thing, so I picked up a used one on eBay. Kicking myself now that it doesn’t seem like a got as good of a deal as I thought.

  14. Andrew says:

    Ben, how well does the surround sound work with your XPS 420 via Media Center and, now, with an extender?

  15. Ben Drawbaugh says:

    The surround sound seems to work exactly the same. Although I’m using HDMI right now instead of toslink. I do plan to test out component and toslink to make sure it doesn’t work better than HDMI.

  16. Brad says:

    Ben, do you use a DVD/Blu-Ray library in your media center setup? I am trying to get away from having a PC next to the TV, this is my only hang up, I cant figure out a good way to get Blu-Rays over the extender…


  17. Ben Drawbaugh says:

    Yes I have a LG BD300 Blu-ray player which is great. I have my Home Automation controller programmed to interpret IR codes from my media center remote so I can use the same basic remote for both.

    I used to play Blu-ray back on my HTPC, but the usability was terrible.