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Xbox Wireless Adapter Info Leaked

simoniker posted more than 10 years ago | from the look-ma-no-wires dept.

XBox (Games) 38

cdneng2 writes "Yahoo!/Reuters has an article on the a new official wireless LAN/broadband adapter for the Xbox, details of which were unintentionally leaked on the FCC's website ahead of Microsoft's product unveiling. There's even a picture of the adapter, which has '54 Mbps' printed on it, in a Digitimes.com article." According to this latter story, "The chipset in the MN-740 wireless adapter appears to be supplied by Atheros Communications, possibly its 2.4GHz AR5002AP-G chip, which supports 802.11b/g. The device also features user-configurable 128-bit WEP (wired equivalent privacy) security."

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38 comments

Sued! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6829414)

Prepare to be sued for spreading the word, /.
WE ALONE are the masters of the product unveiling underworld, and WE WILL NOT be outdone!

-Billy

Why Shouldn't They Make One? (2, Interesting)

MBCook (132727) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829464)

Why shouldn't MS make a wireless adaptor for the X-Box? Let's face it, X-Box Live is something that many games want to use, but it requires broadband. And while you can use a modem anywhere, most people don't keep their broadband adaptor in their living room, it's usually by a computer. So what does that leave the person doing? They either have to run Cat-5 cable, use something like HomePNA or HomePlug, or use wireless. Why shouldn't MS make a wireless adaper? I wouldn't be suprised if there was a new X-Box bundle by Christmas that inclues the wireless adaptor. I would be willing to bet that wireless internet access is more common in homes than having ethernet jacks in your living room (slashdot croud excluded ;).

Re:Why Shouldn't They Make One? (0)

Acidic_Diarrhea (641390) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829619)

Who said Microsoft shouldn't make a wireless adapter?

Re:Why Shouldn't They Make One? (1)

Anonvmous Coward (589068) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829715)

"Who said Microsoft shouldn't make a wireless adapter?"

Lots of people who frequent this place look for ridiculousness wherever they can find it. It's especially bad when Microsoft's involved. Suddenly, instead of embracing technology, a bunch of noisy people become minimalists.

About 2 years ago there was a story about how fast one can spin a cd before it shatters. As a joke, I responded with "I don't see why anybody uses anything faster than a 2x drive, all I have to do is wait longer!" Instead of being modded as funny like I had intended, it was modded as 'Insightful'. Go fig.

I'm not surprised he posted that. Lots of people have a tendancy to improve their ambient IQ by pointing out the flaws in something like they're devastating.

Re:Why Shouldn't They Make One? (1)

bigman2003 (671309) | more than 10 years ago | (#6832670)

I actually remember that comment about CDs, and 2X being enough for anyone.

Sad to say, I thought you were serious too (I did not mod you up though). There are a lot of people who take pride in still having a 486 (or 386, or lower if you want) that still functions.

On the other hand, I am one of those people who will buy the 52x over 48x CD drive, even if it is a little bit more expensive. Yes, I know I will never see the difference...but it just gives me a great deal of satisfaction knowing that I got the best thing I could have.

So- sorry I thought you were an idiot before.

Re:Why Shouldn't They Make One? (1)

MBCook (132727) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829809)

I posted my comment for two reasons. First is the way that you took it. As Anonvmous Coward already replied to you, many people here will start to bash it for some reason or another.

The other reason I posted it was "Why Shouldn't They Make One", as in "Should We Be Suprised At It?". With other companies like Linksys making such a device, and the obvious potential of it, I am not at all suprised that the device is being made.

I guess my comment can be taken two ways. I really wrote it to address the second reasons, but I guess it works for the first too. Go figure. I write with depth without even knowing it. ;)

Infrastructure vs. Peer mode (4, Interesting)

neglige (641101) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829515)

Wouldn't it be cool if all the up-and-coming (and currently available) wireless input devices using IEEE802.11something could work with any access point/wireless card in infrastructure mode? You could play all your games from your neighbours house while the xbox is safe in your livingroom....

Errr.....

It *would* be cool! IPv6 force feedback gamepads! Yay!

Re:Infrastructure vs. Peer mode (1)

Anonvmous Coward (589068) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829750)

" You could play all your games from your neighbours house while the xbox is safe in your livingroom.... "

Funny you should mention that. I'm going to buy a second Game Cube so I can play multiplayer games on seperate TVs over the lan. That'd be cool if Nintendo had wireless! (Makes me tempted to get an X-BOX)

Okay, not the most interesting or insightful post, but the thing I've hated most about multiplayer console games is that you can't hide from the other player in splitscreen mode. This sucked a lot of the fun out of Goldeneye.

Leaking... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6829575)

The next headline:

Microsoft recalls XBox Wireless Adapter due to leakage damaging the system unit...

The new freeway shootouts... (4, Funny)

JasonMaggini (190142) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829592)

...will be kids in the backs of minivans playing Halo against each other.

"Mommmm! Speed up! We're getting out of range!"

Re:The new freeway shootouts... (3, Insightful)

MMaestro (585010) | more than 10 years ago | (#6829852)

Cars can be modified to have video game systems in them. Mini-TVs in vans and SUVs are becoming popular as well. That statement may become true in the future if wireless connections become stable enough.

Re:The new freeway shootouts... (2, Interesting)

Nonki (682234) | more than 10 years ago | (#6831543)

Actually this has been done, except with a standard wired connection!
Check out the High Speed Highway Halo [bungie.org] video, it's pretty kewl, I'd like to try it sometime.

So what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6829709)

What's so amazing about Microsoft making a 802.11b/g AP for the XBox? It's a reasonably obvious thing to do and another avenue of profit for them.

It's not like this adapter does anything particularly amazing or different to the other legions of Ethernet 802.11a/b/g adapters anyway. It sounds like a standard adapter just in a black casing with XBox stamped on the top.

However, if they did a cheap 802.11a AP then it might be something to look at.

OMFG!!! (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 10 years ago | (#6830103)

Oh wait, this isn't news at all. It'd be news if they DIDN'T buy a design and slap the X-Box logo on it.

Microsoft shuns 802.11, claims a wireless standard that open isn't secure enough for their new image!!!

Then I could badmouth them for being stupid, and feel better at night.

So now every little X-Bot parent has one less stocking stuffer to think about.

Re:OMFG!!! (1)

bigman2003 (671309) | more than 10 years ago | (#6833844)

Well, this is the exact product I have been waiting for. I'll be buying one.

I know that there are similar products out there, but to be honest with you, I don't really feel like researching them, to find out which ones would work with an Xbox. So, I'll take the easy route, and buy the one with the Xbox logo. And no, I'm not stupid, or poorly informed- I deal with computers about 10 hrs a day...that is why I don't want to spend time on this!

Secondly- don't think that this will be purchased mostly by parents, for their children. The Xbox has the 'oldest' demographic out of all the consoles. I'm 35, and I'll be buying it for myself.

I think you missed my joke. (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 10 years ago | (#6834806)

1) This is a significantly different product then the wireless bridge devices on the market (which WILL work with the XBox), as it lets you play with another person without additional hardware if she's got the adapter too.

2) I didn't say it was dumb for Microsoft to release it, but it would be dumb if they didn't release it, and I was complaining that they haven't given me anything to bitch about today.

Ooooooh, now I'm aggravated.

Re:OMFG!!! (1)

kylef (196302) | more than 10 years ago | (#6834635)

It'd be news if they DIDN'T buy a design and slap the X-Box logo on it.

Nowhere in the article does it say anything about "buying a design." MS has excellent hardware engineers.

Furthermore, if you're referring to their using the Atheros chipset, I don't know of any companies that roll their own wireless chipset. So basically, I don't understand what you're referring to at all.

(sigh) (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 10 years ago | (#6834778)

First of all, the chipset IS the design. Have you looked at a wireless card lately? The RF shield goes over the whole thing. The rest is just interface buffering (impedance/voltage matching, I/O arbitration), and maybe a ROM.

D-Link buys designs. Linksys buys designs. Netgear buys designs. I wasn't trying to put Microsoft down, I was trying to express how OBVIOUS it was that Microsoft would have this too, seeing as there would be no excuse (x86 platform and all, no wifi stack/firmware changes or rewrites needed, etc.)

Re:(sigh) (2, Interesting)

kylef (196302) | more than 10 years ago | (#6837034)

First of all, the chipset IS the design.

Well, that is a strange view of PCB design. After many years in the industry, I don't share that view. That would imply that everyone who uses chipsets is simply "buying a design."

In the case of a USB wireless adapter, there are some significant translation layer issues with converting the 802.11x layer to USB that are not solved by the Atheros chipset in question. I'm not saying that this problem hasn't already been solved by several other add-on chipsets, but I'm pointing out that there is at least one more layer that must be designed into the board. And this is not performed by outsiders.

In the industry, "buying a design" implies contracting out the entire board design to meet your specs. Buying a chipset to use in your own design is most certainly not "buying a design." It's just common sense system integration.

Look, I'm not saying that MS had a hard time designing this box. And I understand that as chipsets continue to evolve and BiCMOS featuresets expand, PCB designs (generally) get much easier. But PCB layout isn't a pushover by a long shot, and a well designed board can spell the difference between a buggy piece of crap that's in your face all the time and a well-behaved utility that quietly goes about its business.

Are we in agreement there at least? :-)

Yes. (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 10 years ago | (#6855081)

^_^

(I was sure that the Atheros chipset in particular handled a great deal of the nasty details of handling the 802.11x stack through logical USB frame commands, so that the driver would be pretty straightforward. Or maybe it was the opposite; it exposed the radio directly THROUGH USB to the driver, so it had to do all the work... in any case I was sure the chipset greatly simplified things from a design standpoint since it bridged USB to the netradio almost directly. I could be thinking of something else, this was almost 2 years ago. Oh dear.)

That should go into the Gameboy Advance (1)

mnmn (145599) | more than 10 years ago | (#6830356)

The whole idea of Wireless networking relies on moving around place to place, not too viable with a static console. If the Gameboy Advance incorporated a low-power version of the 802.11, we could have game packs which could constantly scan around for a player with a certain skill level, then beep. There could be spontaneous lanparties everywhere much like the Flash Mobs.

Re:That should go into the Gameboy Advance (4, Insightful)

Anonvmous Coward (589068) | more than 10 years ago | (#6830385)

"The whole idea of Wireless networking relies on moving around place to place, not too viable with a static console."

Eh? Why? I kinda thought the idea behind wireless networking is that you wouldn't have to connect stuff with wires. Am I being too literal?

Re:That should go into the Gameboy Advance (1)

mnmn (145599) | more than 10 years ago | (#6830413)

Well you could use wireless for THAT, but the cost for most cases is not justified there. I'm just saying that application would be more 'cool' than this application, where many would prefer static cables and savings in the difference of the cost.

Re:That should go into the Gameboy Advance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6830611)

OOO wow an offical one, people already have modded ones. Theres also unoffical ones, but now ms can bundle it with live and charge quite a bit.

Bah (2, Insightful)

mrpuffypants (444598) | more than 10 years ago | (#6831313)

I ran Cat5 to my entertainment system for two reasons: Xbox and TiVo. Since they're both using ethernet I see nothing to get excited about over this release. Linksys already makes some great products for bridging ethernet to 802.11b/g that are tailored just for the ps2/gc/xbox and they're probably cheaper in the longrun, plus they can be used with anything, not just your Xbox (wanna extend your network to your neighbor's house? Use one of linksys's thingamabobs)

Now what would get me excited would be a good RF controller for the xbox made by microsoft. I just used the wavebird for the first time about a week ago and it totally blew my mind. Who needs wires for controllers?

war gaming (1)

JDizzy (85499) | more than 10 years ago | (#6831555)

This is wonderfull news. Now with my DC-to-AC car power addapter, I can plug my Xbox into the extra DC outlet in my SUV and ride around and game on other people's internet connections. Even more interesting is the notion that I can probably now intercept other peoples game packets form my cozy parking spot in front of their house! Who know, I might even be able to get a free live subscription by hijacking another persons packets over the 802.11 medium. Games are awsome at generating lots of packets too, so I can easily capture one million packets (the suggested amount for WEP cracking) if they get any ideas of enabling encryption. It took me all of 7 seconds to crack the WEP encryption my neighbors used once I had enough packets logged (5 or 6 hours). I cannot wait for this new toy to hit the shelves. I can finally replace that old laptop (running freebsd) which sits atop the xbox, and acts as a IPless bridge over wifi. Ya!

Re:war gaming (1)

Aliencow (653119) | more than 10 years ago | (#6833958)

Yeah, a million packets to crack wep.
With 5 years old shitty hardware and firmwares maybe. The last AP I tested gave me ONE weak packet after 6 million packets, so I wouldn't count on it.

Re:war gaming (1)

JDizzy (85499) | more than 10 years ago | (#6834217)

Good for you, have a cookie from the jar. I did manage to crack WEP on several different AP's, but I probably do this stuff more than you? =)

I Would estimate that of the hundreds of AP's I have surfed, only 30% bother to enable WEP or any sort of seciurty such as mac/ip filters. Of Those AP's that did enable WEP, only a few were a problem for me. For example, one AP had some sort of round-robin WEP key exchange that must have changed before I got enough packets, another was using IPSEC over WEP (I cracked the WEP), and more recently I have found folks actually using the 128/156 WEP encryption (slow). I use the bsd-airtools BTW, which uses a very fast method to crack WEP.

Re:war gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6835691)

It isn't a lie if you believe it.

Re:war gaming (1)

Aliencow (653119) | more than 10 years ago | (#6835722)

But doesn't bsd-airtools require as many weak packets as, say, Airsnort ?
Did you use anything like Reinji to "help" the access point spit out weak packets?
I'm not saying WEP is hard to crack, but I'd rather play at home with my Xbox than bothering with WEP cracking and packet reinjection hehe..

Re:war gaming (1)

JDizzy (85499) | more than 10 years ago | (#6836002)

nope, BSD-Airtools uses some tricks to go faster, enough so that I wouldn't use anything else. BAT has its own magic to reject non-weak packets.

Re:war gaming (0, Offtopic)

Aliencow (653119) | more than 10 years ago | (#6836012)

Well I gotta try BSD Airtools then, because Airsnort on recent hardware and firmwares just doesn't cut it anymore..

What is WEP for ? (2, Interesting)

foniksonik (573572) | more than 10 years ago | (#6831622)

I just want to know what sort of communication is going on that requires WEP encryption? Seeing as how it is intrinsically flawed, WEP key rotation isn't mentioned and the fact that it will slow down the ever so important FPS?

Any thoughts? Is Microsoft planning on mergin this with their Internet TV concept? Will you be emailing via hotmail through your XBox in the years to come?

Has to fit in with the rest of the Network. (1)

Chuck Chunder (21021) | more than 10 years ago | (#6836865)

My wireless network runs 128bit WEP so if I'm going to consider adding my xbox to that network it will have to have 128 bit WEP as well.

WEP might not be perfect, but it's better than nothing.

Cheap wireless adapter for our computers ? (1)

snowtigger (204757) | more than 10 years ago | (#6833730)

I think this is great news, especially if they will sell the adapter cheap enough. This would be a nice way of getting a cheap 54 Mbs wireless adapters for our computers.

The article mentions an Ethernet interface, otherwise, it must use a USB interface. (As most people probably know, the XBox controllers, memory cards, etc all use USB.)

I bought the XBox remote control as it was the cheapest computer remote control available (in Europe, remote controls for computers are quite expensive).
---
If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up space in the middle

D-LINK DWL-810+ ETHERNET-TO-WIRELESS ADAPT 22MBPS (1)

sjoperkin (110789) | more than 10 years ago | (#6859412)

I've been using the DWL-810+ for some time now, streaming my DVD movies using Relax over to my Xbox in the living room.
Although a bit pricey, the device enables me to connect any hardware with an ethernet interface to my wireless gateway.
It is a great setup with the server stashed away in the closet serving up all movies and MP3s to the xbox, wireless.
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