Dead XBox hard drive

So, GMicek’s XBox came to my house the other day so that I could play THUG2. It worked like a champ and once again Neversoft has released an exceptional Tony Hawk game. Yes, I know it’s been out almost a year, I just don’t own an XBox and despite seeing THUG2 at E3 like two years ago, I had to wait for it to come over while Greg wasn’t paying attention.

Anyways, yesterday I go to turn it on and I hear, “click click click click… click click click click…” and so on from the disk drive side of the console. It boots up to the XBox logo, then after a couple minutes brings up a screen in about seven languages advising I call XBox support and the eject button on the case flashes red and green. Well I know what the damn problem is: a bloody dead hard drive. In fairness, this was like a day one XBox that Greg picked up, so it has put in some solid hours over the last 4(ish) years.

Is there any way to get a new hard drive and somehow “format” it so that we can put it in there and get the XBox going again without a mod chip? I don’t necessarily care about the save games, although I’d be willing to do some voodoo to rescue them. I’m also perfectly comfortable tearing it all apart, connecting things to my PC and back again, or whatever else.

I should note that the DVD drive is fine (rather, it isn’t the part loudly clicking upon bootup), so previous threads about that won’t help.

Essentially I’m looking to put a new HD in there and have it work without a mod chip because mod chips are only for pirates. </sarcasm> Actually I’d like it to work without a mod chip just because. If I have to mod it, I’ll feel like I lost the battle and I don’t like losing against compute^H^H^H^H electronics.

You need to have the mod chip to be able to fix it. Either that or call up Microsoft and bitch til they lower the charge to something you’re willing to pay. It’s normally $80.

–Dave