Xbox 360 to Support Third-Party USB Storage: Rumor

Dennis Faas's picture

Microsoft appears ready to support third-party USB storage for its Xbox 360 console, says a recent report from Joystiq. The source of the information, a Microsoft engineering document, reveals that support for the Xbox 360 platform would be extended later this spring.

Xbo 360 Saved Game Data In Your Pocket

The purpose of offering third-party USB storage on the Xbox 360 platform is simple: quickly saving and loading game data. Yes, gamers around the world will soon be offered the chance to carry around the saved data of their favorite Xbox 360 games in their pocket.

Take it from someone who has come home many times to discover that his pesky sibling has deleted his saved data to "free some space" and you can see that the technology is a step in the right direction.

USB Hard Drives instead of USB Flash Cards

Instead of providing flash-based storage cards, the new update would allow USB hard drives to be used as storage options. There is a catch, however: while many USB hard drives ship with capacity points higher than 16 GB, Microsoft is looking to only allow a partition of 16 GB on size, with 512 MB of that total to be used for system data. (Source:

It isn't all bad news, though. Gamers can use up to two USB devices, meaning that as much as 32 GB of game-saving room is still available.

Partition Space Limited to 16GB

According to Joystiq, users have two options: assuming that the USB hard drive is 250 GB in size, selecting the "Configure Now" option will format the drive as an Xbox partition, but will transform the 250 GB drive into 16 GB of usable storage space.

The second option, activated when selecting the "customize" option will partition out 16 GB, leaving the remainder as storage space that cannot be accessed by the Xbox 360, but can be used by another machine to store music or videos. (Source:

It all sounds a bit complicated, but most gamers should be able to reach some sort of comfort level after testing it out. For now, the product and the process remains just a rumor.

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