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360 Elite: How to move your data

Feature: Your guide to the Elite transfer process for Xbox 360 Elite and 120GB hard drives

Alongside Microsoft's black behemoth, a larger 120GB Xbox 360 HDD will arrive in the shops this Friday. Microsoft's touched on it before, but here's our own guide to getting all your precious XBLA games and data across to the Elite hard drive with minimum bugger-ups.

Just the hard drive
Those just upgrading to the 120GB HDD and not buying the Elite need simply attach the bundled migration kit cable to the new drive (with the other end in one of the 360's USB ports) and the old 20GB HDD attached to the console. Insert the software CD into your disc drive and follow the on-screen instructions (don't play Hexic 2 and forget about it).

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The transfer process can take up to an hour depending on the amount of data you've got stored on your old drive, and Microsoft says to make sure you've got no other accessories hooked up to your console. Easy.

You now have a fresh, blank 20GB hard drive to do with as you wish. You could stick it on another console, flog it on eBay, use it to smash up bus stops; anything.

The whole hog
If you're going all out and moving to the Xbox 360 Elite console though, the transfer process is going to be a bit trickier than if you'd just got the stand-alone HDD - mainly because you won't have a transfer lead to connect to the bloody thing. Essentially you'll need to hike over to Xbox.com and order one of those new-fangled migration kits, which good old Microsoft will provide free of charge.

As with the stand-alone HDD transfer, you'll need to plug the migration kit into one of the Xbox 360's USB ports - only this time make sure it's the new 120GB HDD you're hooking up and the old 20GB one is attached to the Elite console. Put the software disc into the tray and follow the on-screen instructions.

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One thing of note is that the Elite console transfer is a one-time-only deal; once you've moved your data from the 20GB to the 120GB, you can't move it back again. Migration also wipes any data stored on the larger 'Elite' hard disk - so watch it.

Important note: If you're moving over to an Elite console you'll have to connect to Xbox Live to access any of your licensed content, which includes Xbox Live Arcade games at Video Marketplaced downloads (we're guessing you won't have any of those yet). If it's important that you be able to access any of this whilst offline, you might want to reconsider your Elite purchase. The white console looks nice, anyway.

Keep that in mind and you should get all your data across with minimum tears.

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