Hacking the Xbox: An Introduction to Reverse Engineering
  • Hacking the Xbox: An Introduction to Reverse Engineering
  • Hacking the Xbox: An Introduction to Reverse Engineering

Hacking the Xbox: An Introduction to Reverse Engineering

by Andrew 'bunnie' Huang
     
 

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This hands-on guide to hacking begins with step-by-step tutorials on hardware modifications that teach basic hacking techniques as well as essential reverse engineering skills. The book progresses into a discussion of the Xbox security mechanisms and other advanced hacking topics, with an emphasis on educating the readers on the important subjects of computer

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Overview

This hands-on guide to hacking begins with step-by-step tutorials on hardware modifications that teach basic hacking techniques as well as essential reverse engineering skills. The book progresses into a discussion of the Xbox security mechanisms and other advanced hacking topics, with an emphasis on educating the readers on the important subjects of computer security and reverse engineering. Hacking the Xbox includes numerous practical guides, such as where to get hacking gear, soldering techniques, debugging tips and an Xbox hardware reference guide.

Hacking the Xbox also confronts the social and political issues facing today's hacker by looking forward and discussing the impact of today's legal challenges on legitimate reverse engineering activities. The book includes a chapter written by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) about the rights and responsibilities of hackers, and concludes by discussing the latest trends and vulnerabilities in secure PC platforms.

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Editorial Reviews

bn.com
The Barnes & Noble Review
Many legendary engineers got their start with a soldering iron, taking apart and assembling radios, phones, and computers. In those halcyon days, many devices even came with schematics! Nowadays, neither the manufacturers nor the law are quite so friendly. But one current device is especially splendid for hardware hacking: Microsoft’s Xbox.

Almost a PC, this sub-$200 device can be made to do anything from running Linux to serving as a complete media center. And the reverse-engineering skills you learn with it are incredibly useful in all manner of (licit) pursuits. That’s where Hacking the Xbox comes in.

Andrew “Bunny” Huang introduces the ideas and techniques you need to decipher just about any device and walks through several common Xbox mods, taking all the intimidation out of hardware hacking. (Well, almost all. You do want to read the guest chapter full of legal advice on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.)

You’ll start by learning how to “read” a circuit board (Huang answers some of those questions you’ve always wondered about, e.g., why do some circuit board traces seem to meander aimlessly?) Then, you’ll get to work, starting simple (replacing the LED with a cool blue one), and working your way up to the big Kahuna: Xbox security.

Huang’s incredibly useful appendices tell you where to get your gear (some electronics distributors are friendlier than others) and offer practical introductions to soldering, PCB layout, FPGAs, and hardware debugging.

One major publisher backed away from this book for fear of the legal issues. Seems a shame. Whether you plan to void your Xbox warranty or not, this stuff’s just plain fascinating. Bill Camarda

Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781593270292
Publisher:
No Starch Press San Francisco, CA
Publication date:
07/28/2003
Edition description:
Unlimited ed.
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
6.06(w) x 9.04(h) x 0.84(d)

Meet the Author

Andrew "bunnie" Huang lives in Kalamazoo, MI.

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