How to Play Xbox 360 Games With a USB Hard Drive

Written by matthew anderson
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How to Play Xbox 360 Games With a USB Hard Drive
A flash drive or USB hard drive can be used to store and play Xbox 360 games. (usb flash drive image by Bosko Martinovic from Fotolia.com)

The Xbox 360 allows the option to install games to run off the hard drive or a flash drive instead of the disc. In some cases, this allows games to run faster. Xbox Live Arcade games originally could only be run from the hard drive, but flash drive support has been added. The process for installing and running games to a flash drive is similar to the process used for the built in hard drive. While not officially supported, a USB hard drive can be used in place of the flash drive. The Xbox 360 menus still refer to it as a "Flash Drive" in the storage menu.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Flash drive or USB hard drive
  • Game disc (installing games from disc)
  • Xbox Live Account (Xbox Live Arcade games)
  • Microsoft Points (Xbox Live Arcade games)

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Insert the flash drive or USB hard drive into the USB port of the console.

  2. 2

    Insert the game disc into your console.

  3. 3

    Highlight "My Xbox" in the Xbox Dashboard menu. The default selection is the game inserted into the drive.

  4. 4

    Press the "Y" button on the controller.

  5. 5

    Press "Install Game" from the menu.

  6. 6

    Press "Flash Drive" in the memory selection window. The game installs to the flash drive as long as it has sufficient space.

  7. 7

    Press the icon for the game under "My Xbox" to run the game or select it under the "Game Library" section of "My Xbox." The game automatically runs from the flash drive after it is installed. The game disc must still be in the console as an anti-piracy security measure.

  1. 1

    Press the name of the Xbox Live Arcade game in the "Game Marketplace."

  2. 2

    Press "Download Now." You need to have the displayed number of Microsoft Points to purchase games from the Game Marketplace. The points are deducted from your account the first time you download the game.

  3. 3

    Press "Flash Drive" in the memory selection window. The game installs to the flash drive as long as it has sufficient space.

  4. 4

    Press the name of the Xbox Live Arcade game under the "Game Library" section of "My Xbox" to play it.

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