Feeds

Xbox 360 cracked

Bug allowed gamers to run Linux on MS box

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Hardware hackers have developed a technique to hack Microsoft's Xbox 360 gaming console so that it might be possible to run alternative operating systems on the hardware.

The approach, which only works given physical access to the hardware and is strictly for fun, relies on a taking advantage of a vulnerability in the Xbox 360 hypervisor. Properly exploited, the bug allows tinkerers to run arbitrary code (even an alternative OS) with full privileges and full hardware access.

The hypervisor on Xbox 360 machines controls access to memory and provides encryption and decryption services. The approach means that all games and other applications running on the Xbox 360, in theory at least, need to be cryptographically signed with Microsoft's private key and run in non-privileged read-only mode.

Unprivileged code cannot change executable code, but flaws in the way unprivileged code interacts with the hypervisor via the syscall instruction laid the groundwork to the hack.

Full details on the ingenious exploit, including proof of concept code, were published on BugTraq on Wednesday. The anonymous hackers tipped Microsoft off about the issue last month and "following cordial discussions" the software giant quickly produced a patch. The hack has been possible since the bug was introduced in late October. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.