Microsoft have silently updated dae.bin – AP2.5 challenge table updated.

Written by Will on November 17, 2011 and posted in Technology and Gadgets.

Update: I have found a way around the new dae.bin file! info at the bottom of the Page

Silent Update for Xbox 360 issued by Microsoft. dae.bin changed

Image representing Xbox as depicted in CrunchBase

The pirates thought they had beat Microsoft. Microsoft decided to put more information on the disk. More information that a normal burner could burn to the disk, but pirates weren’t beat. They made burning firmware capable of burning the extra information to the disk and all looked smooth.

The new anti-piracy XGD3 format had failed. A while ago Microsoft had tried a different trick to stop the pirates. AP2.5 added new challenges to the boot sequence, challenges read from disks and compared against dae.bin. If you fail a challenge you get an offline ban flag and will be presented with the ban screen at some point when you next connect to Xbox Live. The AP2.5 challenge was quickly overcome with patching offered by abgx360, only problems with it is a reburn is required every time the dae.bin file was updated. The dae.bin file has never been updated outside of a dashboard update. It was not updated every dashboard and there have only ever been a handful of changes.

The dae.bin file had never been changed outside of an update but in theory it could be changed by Microsoft at any time. And it has been! I said it away back last year when AP2.5 hit that the challenge table could be changed up on the fly when Microsoft chooses.

In the past 24 hours your Xbox might have had this on-the-fly dae.bin update. If you have original games you are fine. If you have back-ups you will have been flagged if you played any XGD3 games you will have failed the new challenges and already been flagged. This update is completely silent. It does not give you a prompt or any information about its arrival. It’s a silent update on-the-fly. What’s more is that a second challenge table is now present, not just the one table of challenges but 2. To make matters worse the new table also appears console specific. The new console specific issue is being investigated now but as of yet there is no way to play XGD3 games on a console that has had the on the fly update. The new challenge table appears console specific so be careful sharing it with others may be risky – it is likely traceable and could result in a ban.

What we already knew.

The Xbox Live Dashboard Preview Program kicked off a few days ago, from the update it was known that the dae.bin was updated to now include 2 tables of challenges. It was known that the beta update does not re-flash your console back to stock firmware. The stock firmware (updated a few dashboard updates ago to allow for the read of XGD3 game disks) was also unmodified. There was little challenge to piracy. But then in the middle of the night Microsoft changed the dae.bin on the fly. Previously it was a feature of the LT+ firmware to prevent boot of failed AP2.5 challenge games and stop an offline ban flag. Microsoft issued random AP2.5 challenges (dubbed AP2.6) to combat this safeguard and it had to be removed – all random challenges resulted in safeguard preventing boot so no AP2.5 games were playing at all.

What’s new?

Now it’s Microsofts turn to stop these failed challenge disks booting. The error presented to users is “unsupported disk” and prevents the game from starting at all. If you receive this error you can be almost 100% sure that you are flagged for ban.

Unsupported Disk


There is speculation about this updates initial inception (the very first issue of the update) was with a Modern Warfare 3 title update. There were reports yesterday of “unsupported disk” errors related to MW3. This looks like it was the beginning of the update. This i the error that you will be presented with if you try to play any XGD3 back-up game. All AP2.5 games are likely to throw the same error out if you try to play them. Here’s what is posted over at

Update 2011/11/16:

DAE.bin is being silently updated through Xbox Live with an additional challenge table! This happens on the current public dashboard version 2.0.13604.0 and there is no confirmation dialog or any known means to prevent it besides disconnecting your console from the internet.

If your DAE.bin has already been silently updated, AP25 backups that are patched with current AP25 replay data will fail the normal AP25 challenges outright! Note that all XGD3 games use AP25.

Use your originals if you want to play on Xbox Live.

There’s even a little bit more information on offer over at There is information posted about the dashboard preview program, followed by information about the on the fly update and then a further comments from c4eva himself stating that systems affected by the changes have been both modified and completely in-modified consoles. He is waiting to see if a fallback occurs. there was also a simple, firm, “no” to a user who posed him the question “Is this the end for modders?”. Here’s what’s at c4evaspeaks about the new issues:

Posted on 2011-11-10 by

We’ve confirmed that the dae.bin has changed in the new Xbox 360 Fall 2011 Preview Dash (2.0.14686.0). c4eva has reported to the team that XGD2 and XGD3 backups are still booting under LT+ v2.0/2.01 (from team channel: [2011-11-10 08:58PM UTC]backups,xgd3 still booting). However, do not take this as a sign that everything is fine. Booting backups with older AP25 replay sectors on 14686 may get you flagged. Don’t say we didn’t warn you! We can confirm though that these changes will indeed necessitate new versions of and/or changes to Xbox Backup Creator, abgx360, and several other associated tools. It has also been confirmed by the team that drive fw’s are not affected. All the changes are currently being analyzed, and we’ll continue to update this post when further details become available.

*UPDATE* [2011-11-14 04:12PM UTC]
There is still a lot of analysis to do. Unlike the changes to the dae.bin in the previous updates, this time around the changes aren’t so simple. In addition to possibly having to re-burn/re-press, accommodating the changes has a ripple effect across XBC, abgx360, other associated/internal tools, as well as potentially the fw itself. Right now it’s too early to make any definitive statements. It should be clarified in the original post where mention was made that “the drive fw’s are not affected” — this was not in reference to c4eva’s fw, but rather to the ofw re-flashing of non-updated drives. The fw versions those drives get updated to has not changed in this update (e.g. Lite-On phats to 02510C, and Lite-On slim 9504 to 0272). The team appreciates your patience. More concrete info about what these changes entail will be posted in the days ahead as analysis progresses.


Posted on 2011-11-17

First and foremost, a warning — at this current time it is advised that you stay offline and avoid playing any AP2.5/XGD3 backups. It has been confirmed by the team that the dae.bin is now being silently updated on all LIVE-connected boxes.

This update is not being deployed via a SystemUpdate or TitleUpdate, but rather occurs in the background without any visual indication or prompt to the user. As such, there is no means by which it can be cancelled or avoided, other than not connecting to LIVE. If you’ve connected to LIVE in the past 24 hours, your system has likely already been updated with a changed dae.bin.

All AP2.5/XGD3 backups that contain the now older AP25 replay data will fail the system’s AP2.5 challenges and indeed flag your system (the flagging has also been confirmed by the team).

Like our news a few days ago, the dae.bin is now being changed by way of an appended challenge table in the same manner on current retail dashes (13604) as it is on the preview dash (14686), however the content of the challenge tables differ. The team has determined that the appended challenge table appears to be unique per console and contains indentifying information. This means that everyone’s dae.bin is different, and can potentially be traced back to your specific console. Therefore, sharing your dae.bin with others is not advisable.

More info to come


Posted on 2011-11-17

[2011-11-17 07:44AM UTC] #c4e hello
[2011-11-17 07:53AM UTC] #c4e a solution to the per console ap25 is being worked on, as un-modded boxes are affected, will monitor the situation to see if there is a rollback


Posted on 2011-11-17

[2011-11-17 07:44AM UTC] #fw <c4eva> hello
[2011-11-17 07:52AM UTC] #fw <skynets> c4eva if ms can update dae anytime it wants does that mean it’s over for modders?

[2011-11-17 07:54AM UTC] #fw <c4eva> skynets:no :)