King Kong Hack (outdated)
1. You need an Xbox with a kernel version of 4532 or 4548
You can check your kernel version in "System -> Console Settings -> System Info". The line at the bottom contains your kernel version in the format K:2.0.nnnn.0, where nnnn is your four digit kernel version. The kernel version can be older (lower number) than 4532 or 4548, but not newer (higher number). If you already have a newer version, there is nothing you can do right now. If you buy an Xbox, make sure that its manufacturing date is before 09 January 2007, so that the kernel version is 4548 or older. You can see the manufacturing date ("MFR Date") through the carton without opening it. Note, I have just got a new UK core pack with a MFG date of 19th June 2007, with all the new heatsink inside and the kernel version was one of the 2000 ones, so very old kernel on brand new xbox 360s. Note, I have just bought a premium pack with a MFG date of 16th May 2006, and the kernel version was 5759, so a new kernel on a 2006's Xbox 360.
2. Upgrading the kernel to 4532
If your kernel version is older than 4532 or 4548, you can update to one of these versions. Do not update to a version newer than 4598! You won't be able to downgrade! If you have a pre-4532 kernel, you need to get the file HD_DVD_10-2006.zip, check the MD5SUM to be cd4db8e2c94266ab73513c361dd5b8f6 (important!), burn it to a CD, and insert the CD into your Xbox 360. The program will update your machine to kernel version 4532. This file is an authentic Microsoft update application, but is not available on Microsoft's servers any more. If you own an Xbox, it should be legal for you to download and run this application. IMPORTANT: If you use a HDD and previously canceled a XBOX Live Update request, then you must remove the HDD to prevent the Kernel updater using the cached Kernel Updater, which is newer then the Kernel 4532! If you don't remove the HDD, then the Kernel Updater will use the cached Kernel Updater from the HDD and not from the CD!
3. Flashing the DVD-ROM Drive
Different tactics depending on the DVD model in your box. There are some excellent Firmware Flashing Tutorials on the net, which we won't link here for site policy reasons. This does mean opening your Xbox 360 as such warranty is void, Microsoft are known to be working on a way of checking this and banning any flashed Xbox 360's from Xbox Live.
4. Buy King Kong and make an image
There are two versions of King Kong available. The patcher currently does not work with the newer "classics" version of "King Kong". If in doubt, buy the oldest version you can get. Backing up won't be covered here for site policy reasons, but the net is your friend again.
5. Patch your King Kong image
There are two King Kong patches available right now. The first was the one by Crawler360: Launch the modified game, press START on the title screen, and a very simple loader will be launched that allows uploading your code through a serial cable. There is a newer patch in the wild by xorloser, which allows booting directly from CDROM.
Patch your King Kong ISO with either the windows exe or compile the
source for Linux. If you're using the windows patch, you will need to
download cygwin1.dll and put it into your windows/system32 folder. Then
make sure shader.bin, the exe, and your King Kong ISO are in the same
folder and run: win_patch.exe
Source: Included readme
6. Get Linux
”This LiveCD is based on the BETA Gentoo LiveCD. It includes our X.org framebuffer driver and a Gnome Desktop environment. Download size is around 600MB.”
Use the BETA v2 release or later in case you have a Samsung drive. Hitachi drive users do not need to care. You may use re-writeable medias for the distributions as they may improve now in short distances... :-)
7. Get it started
Switch on your Xbox 360, and load up the patched King Kong, and press start on the title screen. Wait until the tray opens. Insert the Linux CD. Close the tray. A few second later, you should be greeted by some penguins.
8. Install it to Harddisk (optional)
Debian etch install Script (Recommended)
Ubuntu 7.10 install Script