Swapping xbox 360 hard drives...
August 12, 2009 10:42 AM   Subscribe

What is the process like for swapping hard drives in an xbox 360?

With the new dashboard update, and its ability to download full retail games to your hard drive, I'm considering upgrading from my 20 gig 360 hard drive. What's the process for migrating all of my data? is it possible to move my gamertag, save files etc... to the new drive? how does one go about doing this?
posted by shmegegge to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: It's actually very easy to do with an MU. You can get a 64MB one for $10. You can probably get a used one for cheaper, or maybe a friend has one you can borrow. All you need to bring over are your save games (the ones you want to keep). When you log in with your Xbox Live account, all of your achievements will carry over with your profile, and anything you purchased through the marketplace can be downloaded again -- unless it was a video that expired, but obviously if it expires you won't want to take that with you.

So -- get the MU, copy your save games over, leave everything else, put in the new harddrive, recover your gamertag, and find the games and videos you want to keep and re-download them.
posted by pazazygeek at 10:49 AM on August 12, 2009

what pazazygeek said
posted by matteo at 10:53 AM on August 12, 2009

Best answer: Oh, and for the very specifics on how to do this.

Step 1:
On the original hard drive, insert the MU into the MU slot.
In the dashboard, go to "System Settings" -- it's the last option to the right on the "My Xbox" tab.
Select "Memory"
Select "Hard Drive"
Find everything you want to copy to the MU, and do so (you'll see how to do this easily).

Step 2:
Then shut down, put in the new hard drive, reboot.
Go to "Sign in" and instead select "recover gamertag"
Follow the steps, it takes some time.

Step 3:
Then repeat step 1, but in reverse.
posted by pazazygeek at 10:54 AM on August 12, 2009

Best answer: It's much easier than all that; the expansion hard drive comes with cables and software, so that you can copy the whole current HD over to the new HD (erases the old HD in the process, so you can't share your old games with someone else).
posted by nomisxid at 11:05 AM on August 12, 2009

I got a new unit with a larger HD, but had not cables/transfer kit. I called microsoft and they sent me the transfer kit + cable for free.
posted by mattholomew at 11:26 AM on August 12, 2009

I had the same experience at mattholomew. Old unit died, but not RRoD, and I found more value in buying a new unit with HDMI and a larger drive than paying to have the current one repaired. Microsoft sent the transfer kit for free at my request.
posted by owtytrof at 12:53 PM on August 12, 2009

Yes, transfer kit is good and does not take long. HOWEVER: When mine finished moving files it helpfully let me know that it couldn't move some files and therefore just deleted them. Which files? It neglected to mention. I checked my HD contents as thoroughly as I could and don't seem to be missing anything critical but you may want to somehow back up your most critical saves just in case.

(It also installs a bunch of useless demos and videos. But hey, better than re-downloading all my Rock Band DLC. )
posted by Monster_Zero at 1:21 PM on August 12, 2009

I believe there's one quirk about the DLC, though (unless the transfer kit somehow fixes this). The downloaded content is tied to two things: the console it was downloaded on, and the gamertag that bought (or DL'ed) it.

So if you copy the content to a new console, you won't be able to access it unless signed in as the gamertag that it's affiliated with. This only matters if you want to be able to use that content even when not signed in (such as Rockband DLC when you're not connected or are transporting the console to another location), so it's not super critical. You can do a transfer of your license, and after that's done you can re-download the content (free) to make sure it's tagged to the new console.

Like I said it's not super critical, but something to consider since it'll be far easier now than later.
posted by hincandenza at 1:34 PM on August 12, 2009

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