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Guide to flashing your new X2.2 or X2.3 with FlashBIOS and Installing EvolutionX
by lookformeb - v2.01 (revised: 05.29.2004, 15:30 hours)



Introduction -
I had to troubleshoot many issues when I was done installing my mod chip, so I thought I'd share what worked best for me. This does not cover the actual hardware install, just everything after that. Just so you know, I have a v1.0 4034 Xbox with a standard Thompson DVD Drive. The Memorex CD-RW, 650mb, 4x CD's worked every time for me everytime on every type of drive.

Disclaimer -
Read this all the way through at least once before performing the flash. I am in no way responsible for what you do to your Xbox. If you mess it up, it's not my fault. This is exactly what worked for me and should also work for you, if you do it right. If you can't find a file you need... Uh, try xbins.org! ;-)

Please note -
Make sure your Xbox is not fragging. If it is, then seek help elsewhere. If you can't get your FlashBIOS (Cromwell) to display video, it could be for a few reasons. Either you have a 1.4-1.5 version motherboard with a Focus chip or you have an older version of Cromwell that is known to have issues with displaying video. If the screen is blank and the DVD tray is ejected, you have the first scenario, which is fine and you can continue. If nothing happens then you have the second scenario; in this case you need to keep powering on and off the Xbox until video is displayed.

Xbox Live 2.0 note -
You need to disable the Auto Sign-In feature of Xbox Live 2.0 before you continue. It will prevent you from being banned from Live. You may enable it after you have the EvolutionX dashboard installed properly, if you like. Read how here.

Questions -
If you still have questions when you are done reading, they can be answered here.


Preparation -
- You should have the BIOS of your choice already downloaded. I would recommend the newest X2 BIOS (4979.06 repack or
   newer). One with modified colors, fan speeds, and/or the LBA48 patch will work just fine if you follow the guide step-by-step.
- Acquire the following: Nero 5.5 (or greater, Compatible CD-RW Media, Xecuter2 BIOS Manager , SimpleX ISO, the latest version
   of the EvolutionX dashboard and EvolutionX for Dummies. If you are having troubles burning and you're not using Nero, don't
   cry to anyone about it. Nero works best for what you are about to do.
- Create a dummy file 50mb or larger. A dummy file can be anyfile simply renamed to ABC.DAT or 1.DAT.
- You need to have some way to transfer files via FTP to your box. EvolutionX for Dummies describes how to do this.

Setup -
- Your Xbox must be hooked up via RCA cables. This is the most reliable way since FlashBIOS wont output video any other way
   reliably. I've heard about people having problems getting a good video output with FlashBIOS but my experiences have always    shown this is because they are using some aftermarket video kit. Every time I booted the Xbox there was a clean signal (I
   booted it many times).

Phase 1 - Creating the BIOS Update CD
- Open the Xecuter2 Bios Manager and fill the first two banks with the EXACT same BIOS byselecting the bank and the choosing
   Open under "Selected Bank Options". Select the first two banks you've just imported the BIOS into and choose Save under the
   "Selected Bank Options". Save the file as BIOS.BIN.
- Open up Nero (don't use the wizard). Select "CD-ROM (ISO)" and click New. Move ABC.DAT and BIOS.BIN over into the ISO
   compilation. Click -File->Write CD and make all of the settings identical to the following pictures: Multisession Tab ,
   ISO Tab, Label Tab, Burn Tab. If you can go lower than 4x, then do it. It's always best to burn at the slowest speed possible.
   If for some reason Disc at Once doesn't work for you then try Track At Once.

Phase 2 - Flashing
- Power up the Xbox with the mod chip on, unprotected with bank2 selected. Your drive tray should eject and your screen
   though look like this: FlashBIOS Screen Shot. Put the CD in the tray and close it. FlashBIOS should tell you the CD "BIOS" has
   been found and begin to load your new BIOS. It will automatically shutdown when done.
- If your CD isn't recognized (doesn't tell you the name of the CD), then go back into Nero and try the Track at Once burning
   method. If that still doesn't work then go to http://forums.xbox-scene.com/index.php?act=ST&f=11&t=12727 and find out
   what media works best for your DVD Drive.
- If you CD is recognized and it tells you "No BIOS Found... Halting!" then go back and recheck the names of your files and make
   sure bank2 is selected along with the BIOS being unprotected. If all that is correct then try a larger dummy file. If all else fails,
   you are still doing something wrong... probably something very simple you are overlooking.
- After the flash, you should have the latest X2 BIOS on bank1 and the original FlashBIOS on bank2.

Phase 3 - Loading EvolutionX
- Read EvolutionX for Dummies and configure everything as described, especially the networking portion. Make sure you
- Check your skins directory for any folders that begin with a number instead of a letter. If so, rename ABC.DAT to 1.DAT. This
   makes sure that the dummy file is written before all the other files.
- Gather the SKIN directory, your dummy file (either ABC.DAT or 1.DAT), DEFAULT.XBE, and EVOX.INI into a new folder. Open
   SimpleX ISO, click "Make an ISO" and point it to the new folder you just created. Save the ISO you are creating to the desktop as
   EVOX.ISO and close the program when it finishes. Open Nero and click -File-> Burn Image and select EVOX.ISO from the
   desktop. Make sure you are burning with the settings as pictured here (if Disk At Once doesn't work, try Track At Once).
- Use the switch settings of on, protect, and bank1. If your Xbox frags or the BIOS still says "Microsoft", go back to Phase 2 and
   reflash the BIOS.
- Power up the Xbox and place the dashboard cd in the DVD tray. The EvolutionX dashboard should load. If it doesn't, check to
   make sure the mod chip is on and the Xecuter2 logo comes up on boot in the place of the old Microsoft logo. If the dashboard
   doesn't boot then you proabably burned it wrong.
- Once the EvolutionX dashboard comes up, load your favorite FTP program on your computer (SmartFTP, LeechFTP,
   FlashFXP). Login using xbox as your user and pass. BACK UP YOUR C DRIVE. DO NOT FORGET TO DO THIS. After you've
   done that, you can upload evoxdash.xbe, evox.ini and the skins directory to the C drive.
- Close the FTP, eject the CD and choose the reboot option from the dashboard.

Phase 4 - Final Phase
- The EvolutionX dashboard will now load. You're done! Congratulations on a successful install!

Note - Playing on Xbox Live!
- You must boot your Xbox with the mod chip OFF to play Xbox Live. Microsoft looks for modified BIOS' and will ban you as
   soon as they recognize a foreign BIOS. You could flash the original Xbox BIOS into one of the banks and still play on Live as long
   as you boot from that bank but that is pointless. Use the led that the Xecuter Team gave you so you are sure you don't ever get
   on Xbox Live with a foreign BIOS running.
- If you plan on replacing the hard drive, remember that you have to have it locked in order to play Live. True, you can
   theoretically try play Live with it unlocked but in order to do this you would have to have your mod chip on. Obviously, this
   wouldn't work out well in the long run.


Props to the Xbox Scene website and forums people. When I had problems, they were more then willing to help me though it. Without them, I'd be lost. Know your roots! Great job guys!


Revisions -

      2.0 - 05/29/04 -
- moved to new domain and edited relating links

      2.0 - 01/01/04 -
- it seems as if some people can't take a risk and do some reading about the project ahead
of them, so they tell me that i need to update my tutorial when their x2.x wont display
video on their 1.4-1.5 xbox. i'm tired of hearing this bullshit from lazy people, so at
2.:12 am on my new years i am updating this damn thing in hopes that the ignorant
will speak less. if you're actually reading this and you take offense, you're probably
one of the people i'm talking about and i don't care if you don't like it.

      2.0 - 12/08/03 -
- made a few minor html and wording corrections

      2.0 - 10/19/03 -
- a special thanks goes out to ctide for point out a revised way to flash -
made many revisions taking note of a post made on the xecuter forums

      1.0 - 7/30/03 -
- a special thanks goes out to terrorbyte for taking the time to point out things to add -
added an additional note regarding flashing the bios again.
made an addition to the playing on xbox live! note
added a comment on cold booting your xbox for best results

      1.0 - 7/29/03 -
completely revised the burning section of phase three. the original seemed a bit
flaky and not very reliable.

      0.99 - 7/28/03 -
revised some of phase 2 & 3

      0.99 - 7/27/03 -
completely rewrote the tutorial. i found writing a tutorial at 3am after working
hard was a terrible idea. i still have to go through proof reading before i consider
this done. i try not to do anything half-assed.