No, you can't make your Xbox One backwards compatible

Microsoft warns that you could brick your console if you attempt to perform the steps outlined in a recent guide floating around.

The Xbox One is not backwards compatible and attempting to adjust system settings to add the functionality could brick your console, Microsoft's Larry "Major Nelson" warned users today.

"To be clear, there is no way to make your Xbox One backwards compatible," he said today on Twitter. "Performing steps to attempt this could make your console inoperable."

A guide floating around today claims that backwards compatibility on Xbox One can be unlocked with a few button presses. The steps outlined in this guide are the same instructions for turning an Xbox One into a dev kit, which Microsoft also advised against earlier this week.

Though backwards compatibility is not officially supported on Xbox One, Microsoft has suggested that in the future, users may be able to stream older games through the cloud.

"There are so many things that the servers can do. Using our Azure cloud servers, sometimes it’s things like voice processing. It could be more complicated things like rendering full games like a Gaikai and delivering it to the box," Microsoft director of product planning Albert Penello said in September. "We just have to figure out how, over time, how much does that cost to deliver, how good is the experience."

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

Discussion

323 comments
Simulator_Shock
Simulator_Shock

I'm sure Micro$oft deliberately made the Xbox One non-BC so they could make a lot more money by making idiots buy the same games twice, and knowing how M$ does things they will probably require you to be a gold account just so you can take "advantage" of buying all your 360 games again.

Rennik_Repotsir
Rennik_Repotsir

I can stream games I have? Will it read a 360 disc and allow me to freely play a game I already own without having to buy it again?

Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

BC through Cloud streaming? Screw that. Too many flaws. Both Sony and MS should make a not of this: You have lag, picture quality issues, the potential for games to get pulled from servers for any reasons, random disconnects tied to your ISP (sadly, not everyone has reliable broadband yet), and inability to play them during maintenance (remember the PSN hacking?). Do it locally with emulators, separate plug in adapters, source ports, or release the BIOS into the public domain if there is a working emulator for the system on PC that needs them. Streaming is fine for renting, but saying it is BC is a disgrace since the games are tied to a form of always on line DRM that they weren't when they were originally released..

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

It's absolutely astounding that Microsoft left this partial functionality in.  Are you fucking serious?  A key combination can brick your console?  Did you test anything?  This is a RETAIL PRODUCT.  Hello?!


Even more inexplicble is why they didn't IMMEDIATELY patch this out.  Seriosuly?  You're just going to have Major Piece of Shit say "Don't do it" and pat each other on the back?  Get a clue!

nintendians
nintendians

if u want to play old game, just keep the old system, is not like the new system is going to enhanced anything.

Redsyrup
Redsyrup

To all the idiots who said a modern AMD 8086 Processor couldn't run code written for a Intel Xenon go back to jeresy! Anyone with half a brain knew this was possible. The only reason it's not fleshed out and restricted is because Microsoft wants to resell you the game you've already purchased via streaming/download.

Red_hot_smasher
Red_hot_smasher

What I don't get is, what the hell were Microsoft thinking when they left a dev menu accessible in retail firmware on retail hardware? It's like they're begging for people to brick/jailbreak their XBOnes ASAP.

aussiemuscle
aussiemuscle

I'm sure Microsoft will find a way to add backwards compatibility once they figure a way to charge you for a game you already bought. or they may just say 'suck it'.

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

The idea of streaming video games sucks.

Anyone who has played OnLive will agree with me here.

zrex2metagor
zrex2metagor

@non-elegantspock
you freaking idiot! Without an interpreter to interpret the human level language to macine level language, a.k.a binary, the freaking compiler wouldnt work in the first place! Do you know how the processor threading takes place in a ps4 or an xboxOne? or even in the 360 or the ps3 for that matter? Do you know shit about computers? A ps4 and an xboxOne are far inferior to a reasonably modern computer in terms of processor power, and thats cause the FUCKING things are built for gaming and entertainment! Not for server hosting, or code development! It doesnt mean that they're worse than a pc! and the 64 bit pc architecture of the ps4 and xb-1 presumably makes it impossible for the consoles to emulate last gen or if according to you the APU clock cycle is enough to emulate last gen then I should be able to, based on your logic, emulate the ps4 on my current laptop. Which is totally possible ( I hope you understand sarcasm) And a proficient computer engineer wouldnt feel the need to throw around his title, or is plugging the wires to the back of the cpu tower considered as engineering in your place? Dude stfu, The ps4 and the xb-1 are both amazing, and maybe based on cloud or something they will be able to run server emulated ps3 or 360 games, and fyi server emulation and console emulation are not the same thing, if that wasnt obvious enough. So justt shut up, k?
---End of Rant---

MooncalfReviews
MooncalfReviews

So wait a second... first you tell us that the Xbox One doesn't support backwards compatibility because of hardware, framework, operating system, blah blah blah, and NOW you're saying it does support backwards compatibility, but you've just disabled it. Because reselling people the same game twice sounds like tons more fun.


I hope Sony takes a better approach, and makes a backwards-compat patch, but I doubt it. I don't often say this but, I think I'll stick with PCs mostly! Backwards compatible to infinity.

mischiefmeerkat
mischiefmeerkat

I wouldn't have even had to read anything to guess that there's no way in hell you can make either xbox one or PS4 backward compatible. That would actually be a halfway generous gesture. That would never happen again in todays greedy pit of a market.

No, they wanna sell all those old games again on the new service, making you buy it even if you already own it...or just retire them and take away your rental.

drybones41
drybones41

I wonder how many people attempted it and bricked their console... fail.


As for backwards compatibility it would be hard work considering the new consoles are so much different. More so with the PS4.

It's not impossible, but it's definitely gotta be hard to do.


It's not a feature i use much though, i should start using it. Still got an early Wii up and running, not tried playing gamecube games with it yet.

Sideways8_4ever
Sideways8_4ever

a shitty console is a shitty console, no matter how you try to explain it.

PHOENIXZERO
PHOENIXZERO

Anyone who believes this deserves to have their consoles bricked for being gullible idiots.

Garm31
Garm31

Are people still talking about Xbox one? WOW! In the age of FaceFucK and Titter. We don't have time to linger. I'm still waiting for gamings real next generation to come. Come on Valve give us a nice new years surprise.

blackace
blackace

@Rennik_RepotsirWe can only hope, but I doubt it. Same goes with Sony's Gaikai as well. We haven't heard diddily about streaming PS3 games to our PS4. None of this will probably happen until late 2014 or 2015 I bet.

Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

Given how their products have been crap in some way hardware wise during the last two gens, they might be telling the truth. Of course, it might also brick if you just put a Blu-ray movie in their as well.

seahaven00
seahaven00

@Thanatos2k If you're stupid enough to do something you know nothing about, then shame on you.  That's like blaming a car manufacturer for allowing someone to turn the steering wheel and crash their car into a tree.  Maybe there are people out there that like the option of turning on the Dev tools?  Did that ever cross your mind?  Or are you just interested in bashing anything Microsoft because you hate Microsoft and you could care less that Microsoft is giving people options and choices????

Defender1978
Defender1978

@nintendians I kept my old system so that I could play my library of 360 games.  I just failed to pick up the Xbox One.  

Redsyrup
Redsyrup

I thought Microsoft said nobody wanted BC? New owners only wanted to play new games. What gives?

Vylsith
Vylsith

It's not possible without a software emulator.  Of course, the Xbox One likely isn't powerful enough to run 360 games on the emulator (we still have problems running PS2 games on modern PCs).  Apparently you've never dabbled in emulators.  It's not as easy as you pretend.

Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

Are you really surprised? This is MS. They bundled the Xbox with faulty power cords that set houses on fire and the 360s fell like dominoes because they cannot grasp the true form of Giygas's attack.

Vylsith
Vylsith

Not to mention the fact that they knew that people found out about the loophole about 4 days ago.  They've had 4 days to make a patch that fixes the problem.  It's likely as simple as changing a sentinel value or commenting out a function call.  Either they're lazy as hell, don't give a damn, or their OS code is an absolute mess.  Either way, this is pretty terrible on their part.  When Geohot found the universal key for the PS3 Sony patched it the next day to stop people from using Homebrew on the PS3 online.  That should have been a significantly more difficult patch.  I can't imagine why Microsoft is sitting on this.  Bad idea.

nintendians
nintendians

@Red_hot_smasher I know how stupid is m$, some people may tried to do anything that they shouldn't suppose do, unless m$ going to release a software for them to program games into it, which I highly doubt it.

Vylsith
Vylsith

I know you're trolling, but you have to know that emulating a 360 game isn't as simple as emulating the process queue.  You'd have to emulate the APU and eDRAM as well.  It's likely that the XBox One wouldn't even be powerful enough to happily emulate the Xbox 360.  There's a reason why cloud gaming is the method of choice for console developers over emulation.  Well, not that Sony has an option.  There's no way they're happily emulating the cell processor.

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

You didn't read that correctly at all.

Black_Pander
Black_Pander

@MooncalfReviews I get the feeling that because of the PS3's mental hardware, the PS4 will legitimately not be backwards compatible...

snaketus
snaketus

That's not the reason why they are not backwards compatible. And I'm glad they are not, so I don't have to pay extra for it, because I happen to own those older systems as well.

You understand that to make for example ps4 compatible with ps3 games it would have to have the actual ps3 hardware in it?

decoy1978
decoy1978

@jcknapier711 I would love to see someone attempt this over YouTube only to brick their console instead.

kujel
kujel

Lol, steambox will fail miserably.

angelcage2
angelcage2

 No, that's stupid. See i'm developing a iOS/Android game and when im testing it, theres a button on the menu, that gives you access to a developer panel where i can spawn enemys, powerups and basically hack my way trough the game. Will i let this button on the menu when i release the game on the markets? HELL NO!!!!!!!!!!!! THATS INSANE!

Is exactly what MS did here. why they leave that options on the menu, if only 0.001% on boxes will be used to for development?

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

No, that's not how it works.  Microsoft (and every other company making a retail product) is making their product for the stupidest people.  If you put a big red button on the side of your console labeled "Don't push me!" and it causes your product to self destruct, it's not the fault of the people who press it but your fault for including such a worthless feature.


Microsoft leaving a damaging development feature in their PRODUCTION PRODUCT is amatuer hour.  That they haven't rectified this with a rushed out patch is baffling.  They'll patch it within hours if someone found an exploit that allowed them to circumvent DRM or game the store, but they won't even protect their console from bricking?  Absolutely pathetic.


If a car manufacturer included something that disabled the brakes of your car if you pressed a certain combination of buttons on your air conditioning it would absolutely be their fault when people crashed and they'd be sued out of existence.

nintendians
nintendians

@Redsyrup why did u reply to me, I'm just saying if xbox one was backward compatible, it'll do nothing much to 360 games.

Redsyrup
Redsyrup

Both CPUs share the same 8086 instructions set. Other than more powerful both CPUs are virtually identical when it comes to interpretation. It's complete BS that BC isn't supported. There both even using an AMD GPU. I'd wager the Xbox OS, although prettier, is built on the same code base found in the 360. Who's fooling who?

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

Sony used software emulation of the PS2 on the PS3.  It's obviously possible if you had access to the original code.  The Xbone should be more than capable.

TheDesertDragon
TheDesertDragon

@Black_Pander @MooncalfReviews Indeed. Writing an emulator for the Cell-CPU is pretty much the equivalent of attempting suicide. In fact, I'm pretty sure the CPU of a PS3 is more powerful than that of a PS4, however the PS3 has a very poor GPU which is of course why it can't deliver as good graphics as the PS4 can. The PS3 CPU was an absolute monster.

SphinxDemon
SphinxDemon

Without a doubt someone will be successful. In every generation, when there's a will there's a way

PHOENIXZERO
PHOENIXZERO

What? All an APU is, is a CPU and GPU on the same die, APU is basically a marketing term for integrated graphics, regardless of how it has evolved, that's it. Both CPUs and GPUs have their own logic units, being an APU doesn't change that and has nothing to do with whether or not the XBox One could emulate the XB360.

Of course it could be technically possible, it's possible to emulate PPC architecture on X86 and vice-versa (as MS did back with the original XBox with the XB360 early on) but like always software based emulation of hardware requires the hardware doing the emulation to be several times more powerful than what it's trying to emulate and I doubt a low power mobile CPU such as Jaguar is not going to be up for the task of emulating Xenon and you're not going to offload that to the GPU, GPGPU compute or no. Never mind that the emulation would be severely limited and the hardware isn't the only thing that would need to be emulated.


If MS could've feasibly emulated the XB360 on the XBO they would have done it or at the very least announced it'd be coming in the future but even then it'd be just as if not more limited than emulation for the original XBox was.


You were one of those who followed MisterXMedia and had your heart ripped out when you finally realized he was full of crap and the whole dGPU/"secret sauce" thing was fantasy weren't you?

SphinxDemon
SphinxDemon

Steam box will reevaluate next generation

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

Both describe a complete failure of core functionality of the product.  Plus he started the retarded car metaphors.

capernaught
capernaught

@Thanatos2k I feel like causing you brakes to fail and trying to turn you Xbox One into a dev kit against the companies recommendations are two COMPLETELY different things.

Vylsith
Vylsith

4 years into the life of the console yes.  Even then, only certain games were playable.  It's not really the same situation.  I'll agree it might be possible, but I wouldn't say it's definitely possible.  Cloud gaming would be a much more efficient and permanent solution.

Vylsith
Vylsith

People don't really read binary anymore.  Sure, they can slowly translate binary into ASCII, but that's not really how code works.  Binary controls the systems of switches inside your PC.  Binary code isn't just packs of 8 bits that change into a character.  Sure, this is how variables are saved in RAM, but there's far more to binary than just that.  They're also on and off settings for the billions upon billions of switches.  You can't really read that.  Reading assembly is WAY more useful than reading binary.  There's no reason to read binary unless you're creating a new assembly language, and good luck with that nowadays.

Besides, he's trolling you.  And he needs to change the angular momentum part still, because he's wrong about that.  If the angular momentum is zero, the fan isn't moving.

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

Wow... if you can just READ binary you should probably find a hobby or a girlfriend.

Just sayin'...

Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

What about something that is an external cell that plugs into the PS4 to use it's disc drive and controllers? Bundle in the PS2 parts, and Sony might be able to sell the device cheaper than a PS3. (No blu-ray drive, no controller, only a cord to plug it into the PS4, etc.)