USB Storage Confirmed on Xbox 360

Earlier in the month we reported on pretty convincing evidence that showed the Xbox 360 to be supporting external storage in an upcoming update. Today, Microsoft revealed that the update will be hitting Xbox 360 owners on April 6.

"On April 6th, we will be releasing a system update over Xbox Live for your Xbox 360 that will allow USB flash drives to be used for storing profiles, game saves, demos and more," Xbox Live director Larry Hryb wrote in his blog. "You will then be able to configure how much storage to use on the device, up to 16 GB. The remaining space on the flash drive will be accessible by your PC or Mac. USB Hard drives may work, but like flash memory, you’ll only be able to use up to 16GB of space."

This news should come as a huge relief to Xbox 360 gamers already at the brink of their storage, especially for those without hard drives or are still using the old 20GB models.

Hryb does want to clarify a couple of points:

·  You can have 2 devices connected to the console at a time, enabling up to 32GB of simultaneous storage.

·  The system won’t just configure the device once it is connected to the console. You’ll need to head to the memory area in system settings, select your USB Device, and choose from Configure Now (Format and Configure the Full Device), or Customize (you can choose how much memory you want configured for Xbox360 from the free space on the device.) 

Of course, nothing is complete without some new merchandise. Microsoft has teamed up with SanDisk to release an Xbox 360 branded USB flash drive in May that comes pre-configured out of the box and ready to go. Pricing for the special drives are to be announced.

Marcus Yam is a technology evangelist for Intel Corporation, the latest in a long line of tech-focused roles spanning a more than 20-year career in the industry. As Executive Editor, News on Tom's Guide and Tom's Hardware, Marcus was responsible for shaping the sites' news output, and he also spent a period as Editor of Outdoors & Sports at Digital Trends.

  • False_Dmitry_II
    I had been thinking about getting one of their memory cards simply because they're a bit more fail resistant (not that I expect my hard drive to fail) for my profile/saves. (also to bring to a friends house)

    But now I can buy however much space $10 gets me and just use that.

    My hard drive is a 120 gig drive that I modded to use like any xbox hard drive, they're just laptop drives.

    Also last time I checked there's a USB plug in the back of the console as well, so why only 2 devices?
  • N.Broekhuijsen
    If your going to do something like this, do it right! Give it NTFS or FAT32 support, and let it use the entire storage space!
  • hoof_hearted
    This can only help Microsoft. I am sure they don't want users saying "I can't buy this game or movie from Xbox Live, not enough space." Kind of silly on their part to be the least bit restrictive when it comes to HD space. Especially when physical HD space is so cheap compared to the revenue they'd miss from selling content.
  • Regulas
    I can plug any external USB HD into my PS3 right now. I bet MS tries to release some proprietary external drive and charge double to all it's fan-boys. They will use their 360 OS to make sure you can not us just any drive. Mark my words.
  • p05esto
    Can I download gamesaves then for the XBOX? Let me clarify that I rarely play (too busy) and don't know. But what I do know is there are no good cheat codes anymore that just unlock everything...really sucks. If I play 1 hour a month that is a LOT and I just want all the cool guns and cars right away so I can have a little fun. Having to go throguh the game, earn crap and whatever just turns me off big time. If I could use cheats or gamesaves that would be the best. Anyone have an idea for me? Take Burnout Paradise City...I still have the default car for a year now and that's my favorite game by far, just pick up controller and GO!
  • mmast0
    i have been a proud xbox 360 owner since its release, but now i am starting to doubt my choice. i think i am just now starting to notice all the bulshitz microsoft is trying to pull and this new arcade thing is such a waste of money. diehard 360 fan starting to consider the competition
  • babybeluga
    I am extremely surprised that any flash drive can work.

    *golf clap @ Microsoft*
  • will_chellam
    In my opinion it's essentially irrelevant whether or not a console supports an external hard disk or not, since no external usb harddisk offers either the capacity or transfer rates to support a respectable media library.

    Anyone with half an ounce of sense that wants a centralised media storage will have a NAS on a Gbit LAN with a decent amount of upgradeability. I currently run a 4tb NAS that can stream to my 360, and any of my families 4 PC's simultaneously, it also houses all my music and a centralised picassa library.

    Whats more, I dont even consider myself a particularly 'power' user, my family definitely arent techophiles, but they do appreciate the unwavering reliability and consistency of such a system. If I was going to be really hardcore about it (and I did consider it) I would have installed a rackmount 'data centre' for the house....

    regardless, back on topic, the 360 and PS3 were only ever supposed to be frontends for media collections, if you go down the path of wanting to centralise an entire media collection, you'll quickly run out of space, and quickly be dissapointed. If you only use your HDD for downloadable content, demos and savegames, even the old 60gb hdd on the 360 pro is going to be largely sufficient.
  • will_chellam
    xbeaterIf your going to do something like this, do it right! Give it NTFS or FAT32 support, and let it use the entire storage space!
    or format a hdd as mac and just plug it in....
  • JohnnyLucky
    Wasn't there a recent news article about this? Feels like a tv rerun.