Official Microsoft Policy: If You a Buy a Used Xbox 360 That’s Banned From Xbox Live, You’re Just Screwed

via Gizmodo by matt buchanan on 11/4/09

Major Nelson, updating us on a periodic Xbox Live purge—banhammering cheaters, pirates and other folks of ill-repute, though not 12-year-olds—reminds us of Microsoft’s official policy that if you buy a used Xbox 360 that’s been banned, you’re screwed.

The crux of the matter is that the warranty on an Xbox 360 “is not transferable,” so if you buy a used console “that has been previously banned, you will not be able to connect to Xbox LIVE.” So if you buy a used Xbox 360, make sure it’s from a less-than-shady party—and if you buy from a used games shop, make ’em connect it to Xbox Live so you know you’re getting something that works.

[Major Nelson]

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Xbox 360 Sky Player down, relaunching ‘in phases’ today

via Joystiq [Xbox] by JC Fletcher on 10/28/09

While the Xbox 360 Sky Player apparently launched in the UK yesterday as planned, things veered away from the plan almost immediately thereafter. The service was “suspended” shortly after launch, for what must be the best possible problem in Microsoft’s eyes: too many subscribers.

“Unfortunately due to the unprecedented levels of simultaneous demand,” a statement on Xbox.com reads, “we did not have the capacity to satisfy all service requests and therefore temporarily suspended all access to the service.” The service is being reinstated in phases today, presumably with some upgrades in place to deal with the demand. An earlier statement (reproduced on Engadget) specified tomorrow as the target date for the relaunch — it seems likely that all users will be returned to their regularly scheduled programming then.

Video: Fall update game installation process

via Xbox 360 Fanboy by Dustin Burg on 8/9/08

Looky here kids, it’s the Fall dashboard update in the hands of some uber l33t dude who “magically” has the new dashboard installed on his Xbox 360. Even better, he (or she) demos the new hard drive game installation process using GTAIV. From the looks of things, the process isn’t quick (copying gigs and gigs of data never is), but does actually copy over ever single megabyte from the disc. Though, you’ll need the disc to load the game. Pop some popcorn, sit back and enjoy the Fall update game installation process.

[Thanks, DCB and SS1029]

Microsoft contemplating for-pay Avatar accessories

via Joystiq by Randy Nelson on 8/1/08

In an interview with VentureBeat, Xbox Live chief John Schappert confirmed that Microsoft is looking at the possibility of charging users for accessories that can be used to customize their Avatars. When asked about such plans, Schappert replied, “That may be in the future.” But what about the near-term? “We want to launch these with great customization and a great library of accessories this fall,” he said.

Given the precedent set early on with for-pay customization items such as gamer pics, the fact that MS might charge for more “exotic” Avatar extras certainly doesn’t surprise us. We also wouldn’t be surprised to see free accessories created to promote upcoming games, films, and events, much in the way promotional game pics and themes are currently offered. So, that Spartan armor helmet? It’ll be, oh, 100. But that totally radical Mountain Dew Extreme Sports Action Experience billboard hat is on the house.


Xbox 360 status info not displaying on friend’s Windows Live Messenger

Xbox 360 status info not displaying on friend’s Windows Live Messenger when logged in though Xbox 360 Live

I am posting this in the hope that someone out there has come across this issue. The people at Xbox 360 Live support has are stumped.
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After the spring update to the Xbox 360, Windows Live Messenger (WLM) was added so your friends using WLM would be able to see when you were on your Xbox 360 and which game you were playing.

Now my issue:

Before, after I linked my new @live.com email with to my original @hotmail.com email , which is what I use to login on my Xbox live gold account, the status and game I as playing would show appear next to my name on the WLM of my hotmail friends.

This is no longer happening. Now, whenever I am logged onto my Xbox 360 with messenger (hotmail account) with my game tag, everyone in my buddy list can’t see me. I am basically am off line.

The only thing different I’ve done recently is to my @hotmail.com account (which connects to my Xbox Live Game Tag), was linking my new @live.com account to it, along with 4 more from work online.

However, I am still using my @hotmail.com along with my gamer tag for my Xbox 360 Live. I made no change there.

At this time, I’ve unlinked all the links from all the accounts under Windows Live ID in case that was the issue.

I’ve recovered my gamer profile on the Xbox 360 and still am getting the same issue. I am unable to clear the cache of the 360 hard drive manually (as per support) and non of my WLM friends show up on my Xbox Live Blade, I have to go to “Chat and IM”, then “MESSENGER” and only there, are my WLM buddies showing up. I can, at that point communicate with them. But on there end, I show up as being off-line.

Anyone know what could be happening? And how I can get it back so my MSN Messenger friends can see when I am online on my Xbox 360 playing a game or watching a movie?

Now, I have set all my setting on my Xbox 360 to show ‘ONLINE’ and ‘EVERYONE’ on the Status settings and the Privacy settings for my Xbox 360.

Thank you for any help.

PS, I’ve contacted ‘800-Xbox’ and they were not able to help. Escalation team is on it. Whatever that means anyways! Never gotten a response, even after being told I would get a call back. Now I am expected some time of response not till the end of next week, @ the earliest.

MySpace Joins Google to Take On Facebook and Microsoft

BetaNews has learned that amidst MySpace’s move to join Google’s OpenSocial community, Microsoft is now in talks with Facebook to integrate Windows Live ID into the quickly growing social network.

Reliable sources tell BetaNews that the two companies have begun talks on integrating login systems following an advertising agreement that gives Microsoft a 1.6 percent stake in Facebook in exchange for $240 million.

Microsoft previously pushed its Passport authentication system — now renamed to Windows Live ID — on third-party sites such as eBay. But that effort was eventually abandoned and Microsoft has focused on making Live ID work across the Redmond company’s own services, including its Xbox Live gaming platform.

With Google’s move to become the primary platform for social networking-based applications, however, Microsoft appears to have changed course. Late Thursday came news that MySpace would join Google’s newly announced OpenSocial API platform, handing a huge win to the search giant. Bebo and others like Friendster are also joining Google.

Facebook was the first site to truly open up for third party developers to create mini-applications that can run on users’ profiles. Companies are eager to tap into the massive visitor bases on social networking sites, which gives them instant exposure and an audience that could potentially bring in revenues. The largest Facebook applications count millions of users, which would not have been possible without the viral nature of the site.

While many of Facebook’s rivals announced plans to develop their own open platforms, almost everyone has now opted to join Google on OpenSocial. Google said it has been working with MySpace for a year on building the platform, which began shortly after the two companies inked a $900 million advertising agreement.

With the addition of MySpace and Bebo, Google now counts far more users than Facebook, so developers may opt to create applications for OpenSocial rather than the individual site. Facebook was apparently not told of Google’s plans, but the site could still add compatibility for OpenSocial’s APIs. However, that would mean Facebook loses control of the platform to Google, which may be difficult for the company to accept.

Bebo, meanwhile, plans to release an API that would allow the conversion of Facebook applications to be compatible with OpenSocial, according to reports. This could make it easy for existing developers to immediate gain access to users on MySpace and other OpenSocial sites. Facebook requires the use of a proprietary language called FBML, while Google is utilizing HTML and JavaScript.

At the end of the day, however, it’s still not clear how big of a market there is for applications running on social networking sites. While a handful such as Slide and iLike have garnered millions of users, most developers count mere thousands. In addition, no application developer has found a good way to monetize those users – something that Google will surely be focused on through OpenSocial.

Industry pundit Michael Arrington expects Facebook to join Google, because if it doesn’t the site will look like the closed outsider.

“For their part, Google will certainly want Facebook’s participation. But they had to get everyone else on board first, before Facebook would even consider it,” Arrington wrote on his TechCrunch blog. “An open platform means no social network has any advantage over any other when it comes to third party applications. The playing field has been evened, and no one wins. Except Google. They always win.”

But Microsoft, with its newfound ties to Facebook, may not want to give in so easily – especially if it is successful in adding Windows Live ID to the site. The two companies could attempt to leverage Microsoft’s huge developer community and create their own standard that also spans Windows Live Spaces, setting up a showdown with Google and MySpace.

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