How Xbox 360 backwards compatibility works on Xbox One

MMGN: Microsoft explained to MMGN that backwards compatibility has been made possible via software emulation essentially running a virtual Xbox 360 within the Xbox One to overcome the vastly different console architectures.

Here's how Xbox 360 games work on Xbox One.

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4Sh0w1273d ago (Edited 1273d ago )

This is a nice brief but informative look at how the new BC works....I still have some deeper technical questions but whatever I'll just congratulate Microsoft X1 software engineers on a job well done.

Kiwi661273d ago ShowReplies(2)
KyRo1273d ago

It's a good idea and I wish Sony went down this route instead of charging us for PS now but while this is good news, has everyone forgot that MS said the x360 would play the OG Xbox games and very few of them actually worked? I hope they do but I remain sceptical.

Volkama1273d ago

That required emulation on a game-by-game basis though. If this is truly emulating a virtual 360 then that work won't be required. So basically I don't think they have repeated that mistake.

Personally it's a pretty minor feature to me as I still have a 360 anyway, but it was certainly not a small undertaking, so I am quite impressed that MS have delivered it. Emulating 3x 3.2ghz Power PC CPU cores on a lower-clocked x86 CPU is no small feat.

1273d ago
4Sh0w1273d ago (Edited 1273d ago )

I agree with everything but the "fairly easy" part, I know a tiny bit about emulation/CPU/GPU and with everything X1 has going on under the hood with the OS/hypervisor this was a software engineering masterpiece.

I mean really when I think about the simple coding Ive done and how difficult it was, things that on the surface seem very very simple can take a mindboggling amount of work/expertise, then there always tiny issues that make you want to break the whole damm computer:

"Some Xbox 360 games require the dashboard to invite friends to multiplayer. That’s very different to the Xbox One system, so the Xbox 360 dashboard still exists. However, the Xbox button is occupied – it takes you to the Xbox One home screen – so Microsoft has had to shoehorn another afterthought button combination. Pressing the Menu and Option buttons together, when playing an Xbox 360 game on Xbox One, will bring up the Xbox 360 dashboard. Considering how rarely it’ll be required, it’s a workable solution to a problem Microsoft never thought would exist, and certainly much better than double tap + Y to take a screenshot."

-lol, we're not even talking about the complex stuff.

UltraNova1273d ago

Yes its a good idea if Sony offered emulated BC but its a bad idea to expect them to shell out the cost of maintaining all those Gaikai servers to stream old ps3 games to us for free.

As for me, I'll never give my ps3 away so it doesn't matter and since most interesting games are getting remastered anw I couldn't care less for BC even thought it would be a nice option to have.

urwifeminder1273d ago

Only played geometry wars so far but worked great need me some Battlestions though stat.

4Sh0w1273d ago

lmfao, me too and Ive seen alot people say this...does anybody not have this game?

KingPin1273d ago

its great that they implemented this feature for xbox gamers.

my only problem is even if you have the disc, you have to download the entire game to the Xone.

why couldnt i just rip the disc to the internal HDD instead, and have the feature to have the disc inserted in order to play the game.

that would work wonders for people with slow internet connections.

Aenea1273d ago

Something tells me they took the binaries of the 360 game, ran it through a conversion program that spits out x86 binaries instead. This speeds up the emulation of the PowerPC instruction set because it's, well, not being emulated at all. So all that's left (ahem, still not that easy) is to emulate the rest of the 360.

1273d ago
freshslicepizza1273d ago

it's to stop people from downloading the game then selling the disk i would imagine. it's a safety net to make sure you are the owner of the disk. it's not like you have to download the game each time you want to play, you just need to have the disk in the system.

KingPin1273d ago

perhaps you misunderstood my comment.

"why couldnt i just rip the disc to the internal HDD instead, AND have the feature to have the DISC INSERTED in order to play the game."

basically after ripping the disc, it could automatically delete a small file that has to be recopied from the disc everytime you wanna play the game. (or something along those lines)

downloading one game that 8GB big will take a few weeks to download where i am. (not all of us are in the USA/UK/AUS where internet speeds are nothing to worry about)

8GB a game, 32-40 games in my do the maths.

like i said, its a great feature, but not everyone who wants to use it will be able to. ripping the disc seems easier option. but like the other guys said up top, they probably converted the binaries or something along those lines not to mention probably have added code for the hardware etc.

kbozz711273d ago

Yeah, this would be nice, but how would they control it? Anyone could just borrow any 360 game, insert disc, and download the full game. Then, return the disc, sell it, or whatever. I agree this would be nice but I do see MS's reasoning behind it.

KingPin1273d ago

my thought process:

1) insert original x360 disc into xone
2) rip x360 game to HDD
3) ripping is complete
4) remove x360 disc.
5) after disc is removed, the console then deletes a few small key files which will have to be recopied as soon as disc is inserted, and deleted as soon as disc is removed. (im thinking somewhere along the lines of 50-100MB)

that way you can rent/borrow and rip as many games as you like, but unless you can copy those key files permanently to your console (which obviously you cant), you always going to require a disc coz they will constantly be copied and removed. also, the files could be randomized too. so you never know exactly which key files are being kept and which ones are being removed.

kingPoS1272d ago

I get you on the limited bandwidth, not to long ago I had to make due with 3mb dsl. So yeah, I too know the pain of waiting for a 5gb+ game to finish downloading.

Gateway MT6706 2008

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 1272d ago
Fro_xoxo1273d ago

I love how people are trying to undermine MS' efforts. This native backward compatibility is a BIG DEAL. You now have the 360's library being open to you. There are tons of games I didn't get to play.

falviousuk1273d ago Show
forcefullpower1273d ago

Just curious but you call this native yet I cannot put just any 360 game into the xbox one and play it. I have to specifically ask them to add it.

JasonKCK1273d ago


1st. You obviously don't know what native means.

2nd. "I have to specifically ask them to add it" I guess they could have went the other way, like charging a high price for it.

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