Xbox 360 Fall 2011 Preview Dash Update (2.0.14696.0) and an Answer to WTF is Up with MW3

Microsoft has rolled out yet another update to the Xbox 360 Fall 2011 Preview Dash, this time bringing it to version 2.0.14696.0. During the preview thus far, backups of MW3, for example, have been observed to flip states between working and not working — twice over. The same has been found with several other games. It's no surprise that many are wondering just WTF is going on.

Contrary to recent rumors, however, MS has not been reverting the dae.bin change/silent update. In actuality, following the silent update of the dae.bin on retail dash 13604, it was quickly determined that MS has been issuing a series of TitleUpdates for certain games (e.g. MW3) alongside the dash updates and dae.bin changes. These TUs appear to be testing the ability for Microsoft to enable/disable triggering of AP2.5 challenges against the disc via the multi-table dae.bin. This is accomplished by patching the default.xex executable with patch files (".xexp"s) in the TU which patch in or out the Disc ID within the xex header. When the Disc ID is present, and the game has an associated entry in the dae.bin tables, the AP2.5 challenges are triggered. Conversely, when the ID is missing, the system will not be able to find an associated entry in the dae.bin tables, and therefore no AP2.5 checks are performed. This accounts for the success of "TU trick" that people have been using to temporarily bypass the updated AP2.5 challenges (clearing the cache of existing/newer TUs and tricking the 360 into using an older TU that doesn't patch the Disc ID into the xex).

Being ranked at #1 for Xbox LIVE activity according to the latest charts, MW3 makes an ideal candidate for these types of tests by offering the largest possible test group. Based on this, Microsoft have shown that they now have two methods by which to control whether a game is AP2.5-active. A title may be AP2.5-activated either through the addition of associated entries in the dae.bin tables, and as it now stands, by way of TitleUpdates patching in or out the Disc ID.

Now, you may be asking yourself why MS would want to deactivate AP2.5 on a game. A team member suggested that this may be to allow MS a method for easily disabling AP2.5 for a particular game if it causes issues on retail consoles (this may coincide with the reports of retail copies failing AP2.5 challenges and showing "Disc Unsupported" errors). Purely speculating here, but testing of these TitleUpdates may also be a sign that Microsoft is preparing to issue AP2.5-enabling TUs for some of the more popular older XGD2 games beyond the original six affected (Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Call of Duty: Black Ops, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, Fable III, Halo Reach, and Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit).

*UPDATE* [2011-11-23 11:37AM UTC]
As an added note in response to questions we've received, the usage of TitleUpdates in (de)activating AP2.5 in no way affects c4eva's "silver bullet" solution being implemented in iXtreme LT+ v3.0. C4eva noted in private earlier that with his solution, all current and future effort put into AP2.5 by MS is all for nothing.

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223 Responses to Xbox 360 Fall 2011 Preview Dash Update (2.0.14696.0) and an Answer to WTF is Up with MW3 (Including 36 Discussion Threads)

  1. avatar Ploide says:

    So is this good or bad for the modding scene ? I got my hopes up with the 'Silver Bullet' for AP2.5/XGD3 games… Does this affect the teams idea's for LT+ v3.0 etc ?

    Thanks in advance

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  2. avatar GearDom says:

    Reading this i guess it will be hard to be banned if we already have been flagged cause people with legit copies of MW3 had the same issue.Am i right?

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    • avatar baza says:

      Looks thats way as i have a legit console and that failed ap2.5 challenge, if they do go ahead and ban every console thats failed the ap2.5 challenge then it will cost ms alot of money and i dont think they want bad publicity.

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    • avatar Vin says:

      One failed ap25 challenge does not necessarily mean a ban. It is popular opinion that it takes multiple failures in a small time frame to get banned as a retail disc can fail on ocassion. However this is speculation and only microsoft know their banning rules. However many users have had failed a challenge a very long time ago and have not been banned yet.

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  3. avatar rmom says:

    everyday the same: what about…, is there an eta…, etc.
    remember guys this is a free service by c4eva and all the other teams involved, why not just be quiet and wait?!
    if it's ready to be shipped, it will be shipped! i really appreciate c4evas projects and
    i could really imagine it's so embarassing if you do such a good job and all day some ppl are complaining about the progress isn't as fast as they expect.
    man, just stay tuned and wait!

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    • avatar DukeOfBrockley says:

      I was sympathetic til now but if I was c4eva i seriously wouldn't bother with hitachi now…

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      • avatar t0b4d says:

        first, i have a hitachi drive and i need the lt 2.0 to conform the new checks – although it doesn't support ap2.5!

        Just because you have an other drive doesn't mean the hitachi user will be put back again!

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      • avatar hitachiwarrior says:

        so ur saying that all the Consoles are more important..ur just saying that cuase u dont have an Hitachi..wrong place to express that stupid point of view..Plus Hitachi is already Finshed..and in you just wait like we have and quit crying Iextreme is far more harder to design then a FW

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      • avatar hope says:

        I hope C4e never releases the f**king hitachi firmware because of you f**king cunts spamming everywhere. Go f**king outside do something useful or f**king die you cunts.

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        • avatar Crash says:

          For every post that asks where Hitachi FW is there are many more of us who have Hitachi drives and are waiting patiently checking the site multiple times a day waiting for the FW. We would really appreciate that FW and haven't done anything to deserve having it withheld from us.

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          • avatar James says:

            You deserve it because your a hitachi prick

          • avatar t0b4d says:

            i didn't want to push c4eva. i just wanted DukeOfBrockley to understand that there are some hitachi users which can't even play xgd3 games.

            so c4eva take your time =) no hurry!

        • avatar jethrotull says:

          I hope you're happy with yourself. I just heard on another forum that a poor hitachi user has in fact just died. The autopsy results came back stating a lack of going outside as the partial cause of death. The actual cause of death was, of course, because ""hope" said they should.

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        • avatar Ghost says:

          it seems my friend u don't know c4eva at all hahahaha

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      • avatar anon says:

        as a fellow Hitachi owner, blow me

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  4. avatar Ghost says:

    well m$ is doing something for sure maybe a counter-attack or attack again :D
    must w8 and see what's m$ has in mind for c4eva :D
    I'm sure c4eva and team will be ready for it like always keep up the good work guys
    and good luck guys u have our thanks and support

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  5. avatar Jon says:

    One question and one question only: Will LT 3.0 make all of this nonsense irrelevant?

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  6. avatar Ghost says:

    sry man . we should w8 a little longer it seems m$ has another plan coming soon…
    pray that those updates don't affect hitachi LT+ 2.0 :D

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    • avatar Anonymous says:

      well unless you have a 78/79, why would they? The earlier versions don't even HAVE a p2.5 Correct me if I'm wrong, but after the hitachi gets XGD3, won't it be the best of the PHAT drives? No probe, no CK3, or other obstacles. Just plug it a SATA to USB adapter with JUngle USB to put it in mode B, and then plug it in to your sata to flash. done.

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  7. avatar pandemix says:

    GearDom, hope so.

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  8. avatar Jesus says:

    Thanks for the info.
    I have question: With the big Xbox update coming this december, arent you scared they introduce an other AP method?

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  9. avatar Pallett says:

    does this mean were ok to play backups of mw3 now seeing as legit copys have had problems aswell?

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  10. avatar Jon says:

    Another question: Has it been determined whether they can only do this through title updates, or can they also do these game by game adjustments silently like the dae.bin changes?

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