Gentoox Stardust

Copyright (C) Thomas "ShALLaX" Pedley (

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc., 59 Temple Place, Suite 330, Boston, MA 02111-1307 USA


0.0 - Preamble
0.1 - Whats new?
1.0 - Installation
1.1 - Installation types and their requirements
1.2 - Booting
2.0 - Help, I'm still stuck!
2.1 - Known Issues
3.0 - Plans for the future
4.0 - Thanks


This Linux distribution contains no copyrighted Microsoft code, no hacked executables, no illegally compiled executables and no other illegal material to the best of my knowledge. If anything is later discovered to be illegal, when given reasonable proof, this distribution will be taken out of circulation and destroyed and you must do the same.

This software comes with absolutely no warranty and I will not be held liable for anything bad that comes of using it. I will not be held responsible for any losses incurred from using this software.

This software has the potential of ruining all the data stored on your Xbox including your TSOP or modchip. You use this software and any subsequent software downloaded by this tool at your own risk.

Gentoox is distributed under the GNU General Public License.


0.0 - Preamble

Stardust is the Gentoox Linux installer for the Xbox. Put simply, its a highly automated system that will install Gentoox on your xbox.

0.1 - Whats new?

+ The distribution is now included in this archive, Stardust no longer downloads the package from the internet. This means once you have this CD burned, you have Gentoox in your possession and do not need to rely on being able to connect to the internet. However, if you wish to upgrade to a new version of Gentoox, you will need to download a new version of the installer.

+ This installer now supports F: drive and native installations.

+ Upgraded to Cromwell 2.26 (fixed USB and keyboard support!)

+ One BIOS fits all (ram-wise, still seperate BIOSes for resolutions)

+ Xpad rumble-on-startup now re-enabled for system administrators with no monitors (might help to let them know their Xbox has booted up)

+ Once you have answered the initial few questions the installation is totally automated. You can walk away from the Xbox and come back to it after its done!

+ 3 to 4 Step installation - You are asked to test your Xpad, which type of installation you want if you have a flashable modchip/ tsop, and if the answer to the previous question is "y", you are asked for a bank size.

You are given a list of (dynamically updated) possible choices at each step of the installation.


1.0 - Installation

First off, start by burning the Stardust.iso file to a CD. I use NERO or cdrecord to do this. Burn it as a standard ISO disc-at-once with finalisation enabled. This should work, if it doesnt - try track-at-once and/or a lower speed.

There are now more methods of installation, the first of which is done by using Cromwell. Inside this archive you should have received a file named "800x600.bin" and one named "640x480.bin" (both in /Stardust BIOS/ - Obviously if one doesnt work, use the other, start with 640x480.bin).

To use this method you will need to either flash your modchip, or TSOP with either file (though the installer has been optimised for 640x480). I'll let you decide how to flash. It only requires a 256K bank but you may double it up to take up 512K or even a full 1MB.

Once you have this BIOS installed, boot your Xbox. A Gentoox screen will appear, make sure the right hand "DVD" icon is selected then wait 10 seconds on press 'A' on your Xpad. Your CD tray will then open automatically - if it doesn't, reboot and try again. Once the tray is open, place the Stardust install CD in the tray and either press 'A', push the tray closed, or press the 'eject' button on your Xbox. The installer will then load. If at any point it gets stuck (sometimes happens at "Starting Linux") or the LED goes a constant red colour, turn off the Xbox and repeat the proceedure. After a few seconds a welcome screen will be displayed with instructions on how to complete the installation.

When the system halts at the end of the installation, simply press the power button to turn your Xbox off, then turn it back on (The same applies if an error occurs).

NOTE: All text is CaSeSenSiTIVe. All answers should be given in lowercase. When you are presented with an option, type your answer exactly as it appears in the list of choices!

In the unlikely event that you need to SSH into the box, you will be assigned an IP via DHCP, if DHCP fails, you will be assigned the following IP information:


The login details for the Stardust installer are the same as in Gentoox:

Username: root
Password: xbox

If you cannot get Cromwell to work, or flash your BIOS, you can use your existing BIOS to boot the CD, simply place the CD in the drive and Xromwell will load.

If you cannot get the CD to boot at all, you can follow this methods (However, it makes use of illegal software which I do NOT support):

Click for FTP Tutorial

1.1 - Installation types and their requirements

There are now 3 installation types, E, F, Native. 'E' is the traditional installation where all the files are placed in E:. 'F' places 'rootfs' and 'swap' on the F: partition but leaves the other files in E: (required for Cromwell/ Xromwell support).

'Native' formats your F: partition to reiserfs and then extracts the rootfs to the newly formatted partition.


The requirements for these installations is as follows:

'e' - You must have 4.5GB free on your E: drive.

'f' - You must have 4.5GB free on your F: drive and 650MB free on your E: drive. The 650MB on E: is just used during installation and is freed up after the install is complete. (i.e. it is just temporary space)

'native' - You must have 4.5GB free on your E: drive and at least a 2GB F: partition. The 4.5GB on E: is just used during installation and is freed up after the install is complete. (i.e. it is just temporary space)

The advantage of a 'native' install is that drive access is a lot faster and puts a lot less strain on the system (loopback filesystems require a large amount of system resources when being accessed). Also, you wont be limited to the 4GB rootfs filesize, your filesystem will be as big as your F: partition is.

NOTE: If you do not have an F: partition then 'native' and 'f' will not be available. If by some reason they do appear in the menu, DO NOT select them as you may damage your filesystem.

1.2 - Booting

If you have a flashable TSOP or modchip, you can tell the installer to flash it with a modified Cromwell BIOS for Gentoox. This BIOS will make Gentoox autoboot each time the Xbox is turned on (after a 10 second delay or when you press the 'A' button on your Xpad). Gentoox is launched by selecting the left 'HDD' icon. Again, this BIOS only takes up 256K so you can still have other BIOSes on a 1MB chip. If you have a 256k modchip and later decide you no longer want this BIOS, you can reflash it from within Gentoox using raincoat. You should never get stuck with just Linux on your Xbox.

You can also boot up Gentoox with this Stardust CD (put it in the drive, then select the left hand icon when it appears).

If you cannot use the BIOS solution, you can launch Gentoox by running:


Again, this works with font hacks (needs signing first!!!)


2.0 - Help, I'm still stuck!

If you messed up your Gentoox installation, you can always reinstall using this disc!

Your most valuable resource regarding Gentoox is its homesite: If you need some dynamic assistance, feel free to drop in to the official channel on irc:

Server :
Channel: #gentoox

( Windows mIRC users can run the following url: irc:// )

2.1 - Known Issues

* Sometimes (1 in 100) Cromwell/Xromwell freezes on boot.

* Unrar progress % is inaccurate.

* If the script is interrupted, you may lose space on drives which cannot be reclaimed until you format them.

* If mouse-drift occurs, hold down the right trigger to improve accuracy or unplug the Xpad then plug it back in, ensuring the analogue sticks are centered.


3.0 - Plans for the future

This CD will be re-released each time a new version of Gentoox is available


4.0 - Thanks

Thanks goes out to everyone who has supported me, offered suggestions and criticised (constructively!!!) my work. You are the people who motivate me in my task to product (what I feel) is the best Xbox Linux distribution around! Without you, I probably would not have bothered going beyond the initial "FINAL" release (as the name would suggest, I didn't plan on releasing any updates, hehehe!).

I'd also like to thank Xantium from Xbox-Scene for posting news relating to Gentoox.

Thanks to the Xbox-Linux team for Cromwell

HUGE thanks to the creator of BusyBox - that is an amazing piece of work! Also, thanks to the creators of Slackware and Slothbox, this CD was originally largely based upon Slothbox but had to be changed due to an outdated BusyBox - I learned a lot from it though!

Thanks to Soundgarden and The Beastie Boys for providing me with something to listen to :)

Thanks to Hellimod, Pedro, Dave, Blake, tytyty, Disp, Byte, Xolution, Genlee, Pb, def, wik, Ziekke, Coolberg, nitra, h3inrich, Rocketeer, xboxmastr, Bucko, paulproteus, Xenia bioterror, Turdhat, Jester, Artifex, bikr, mikegrb, milkpost, Psylenced, TJ...

And THANKS to everyone else I've forgotten (Sorry! Your help and support was much appreciated!)

Thanks to you for taking the time to read this instruction manual!

Remember - feedback is the only way I'll know when there is a problem.

Gentoox Deinstallation Proceedure

Method 1) – Totally legal and done from the Xbox
a) Download Stardust, burn it, and run it
b) Select the type of installation you did
c) Turn off your Xbox after it says "Clearing out old Gentoox... [ ok ]"
d) If you did a native install, you will have to format your F: back to FatX.

Method 2) - No network (Boot EvoX)
a) Boot EvoX
b) Install boXplorer and load it
c) Delete all instances of “rootfs, initrd.gz, readme.txt, linuxboot.cfg, vmlinuz, gentooxx.xbe” and any other newfses you may have made from E: and F:
d) If you did a native install, you will have to format your F: back to FatX.
e) Done – Sorry Gentoox didn’t work out for you :(

Method 3) - With network
a) Boot Evox
b) FTP in
c) Delete all instances of “rootfs, initrd.gz, readme.txt, linuxboot.cfg, vmlinuz, gentooxx.xbe” and any other newfses you may have made from E: and F:
d) If you did a native install, you will have to format your F: back to FatX.
e) Done – Sorry Gentoox didn’t work out for you :(

- Thomas "ShALLaX" Pedley (

This article comes from Gentoox

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