Thursday afternoon, it showed up at my house, and Friday night (once I had gotten back into town), I hooked it up to see just how badly it was screwed up. The front of the console now sports a “ring of light” around the power button. This ring of light is like a primitive message center. It has 4 quadrants: top left, bottom left, top right, and bottom right. On a fully functional 360, this ring lights up green, and then, if you only have 1 controller hooked to it, then the top left quadrant will stay green. If you have 2 controllers, then 2 quadrants stay green, etc, etc.
Mine, however, was not fully functional. The startup screen didn’t even come up on my TV. I never even got any error message to flash across the screen. All that happened, was 3 of the quadrants flashed red continually (the top right quadrant was blank).
So I immediately searched through Google to find out what 3 flashing reds meant. There was a link at Microsoft support that was semi-helpful. it explained the problem, but certainly didn’t offer any possible solutions, since they want you to send it to them for $140 and let them fix it. So I kept looking.
Another site explained how to get more specific information from your xbox, which I won’t get into here, though it is pretty interesting. My error code was 0020.
I then found this link which had some great tips, but they all included taking the Xbox apart, which I was not going to do. I might let someone else do it, but not me. So what if I had bought a hunk of junk. At least it still powered up. I was very doubtful that it would continue to do so once I opened it up. It would be very similar to a drunken game of Operation.
And then I found this site. According to the article, someone claimed that they had had the same problem mine did, and so they wrapped it in a towel (sounds like they might have some anger managment/bondage issues to work out), turned it on, and left it that way for 15-20 minutes. If you don’t know much about electronics, they produce heat; actually, all things that use energy produce heat as byproduct, and just like your computer, the xbox has fans and vents to help keep it cool. So wrapping it in a towel while it’s powered on causes it to overheat.
But according to this guy, once he unwrapped it and let it sit for about 10 minutes, it worked. Now, this idea is pretty ludicrous. It’s hard to figure out exactly what this trick does to actually fix the unit, but the crazy thing is, a lot of other people tried this. And almost every single one of them claimed it worked. And not just for 30 minutes. Some of them had been playing for months, for hours at a time, and still not had any problems.
So, I figured that I couldn’t make the problem any worse…
I wrapped my xbox in a towel, turned it on for 20 minutes, turned it off for 10, and I’ve been playing it ever since! 🙂 I’m never washing that towel again (not that I do much washing anyway; that’s what I got married for! 😉 ).