Security Sector Information

What is the Security Sector?

The Security Sector is a small piece of data located on Xbox 360 HDDs. It is a very important part of Xbox 360 HDDs because it identifies them as official Xbox 360 accessories. It exists mainly to prevent people from using custom HDDs – Microsoft wants you to buy theirs.

All HDDs, when manufactured, have information and serial numbers burned into their firmware. When an Xbox 360 HDD is manufactured, a Security Sector is created based on the information in the firmware and is stored in a cryptographically secure format a few sectors into the HDD. When an Xbox 360 console boots, it first checks that the Security Sector hasn’t been tampered with and then it compares the data in the Security Sector with the data in the HDD’s firmware. Everything must match, or the Xbox 360 console will reject the drive – it won’t even show up on the dashboard.

I lost my Security Sector/My Security Sector has been erased from my HDD/My Xbox 360 no longer recognizes my HDD, can I fix it?

Maybe, review the following scenarios:

  • If you opened the HDD in FATXplorer before
    • FATXplorer automatically saves a backup of the Security Sector of every Xbox 360 HDD you open to a folder named Archived Security Sectors. If you can find it in there, all you have to do is use FATXplorer’s Security Sector Tools in the Toolkit View to add it back.
  • If you have a backup of your Security Sector
    • All you have to do is use FATXplorer’s Security Sector Tools in the Toolkit View to add it back.
  • If you don’t have a backup of your Security Sector
    • Your HDD will no longer work on Xbox 360 consoles. Please don’t contact FATXplorer support if you don’t have a backup, there’s no workaround. While the HDD may no longer work on Xbox 360s, it can still be used on PCs as external/internal storage. Xbox 360 HDDs are exactly the same as PC HDDs.
  • If you found a Security Sector online
    • Any Security Sector you find online will not help. This is because the Security Sector contains the HDD’s serial number, and no two HDDs have the same serial number, so one Security Sector will only work on one HDD. There’s no way to make it work on another due to the cryptographic protection Microsoft placed on it.
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