Mod for hire

by editor @ on June 21, 2007

logo Mod for hire

Don’t have time to mod your Apple TV or don’t think you have the guts/confidence to do it all yourself? Maybe you just need a little help from the folks at

They offer basic mods to your Apple TV like upgrading it to play all kinds of video formats like AVI, DIVX, XVID, etc. All mods come with 30-day money back guarantee.

Has the 1.1 update been good to your hacked Apple TV?

by editor @ on June 21, 2007

By now, you should already know about the version 1.1 software update for the Apple TV. We’re sure that most of you probably rushed to install it and are enjoying those pixelated videos on YouTube already.

BUT, did it break any of your hacks? Let us know what your experience has been with it. We heard a couple of reports on it breaking some hacks. So we are very curious to know. Do tell, do tell.

$1000 USB Bounty: we may have a winner…

by editor @ on June 20, 2007

We are excited!!! We are currently testing an entry sent in by someone from University of Chicago for the USB Bounty that we started a couple of months ago. Hopefully, this is it.

Unlike the hack to boot Apple TV from an external USB drive that is widely available. This USB bounty calls for an external USB drive to be hooked up and used as primary storage – but not to be booted from.

Once we have verified the entry, we will make the announcement (hopefully, in a couple of days) and make the patch available.

Keep your fingers crossed.

Apple to supply free ‘software features and enhancements’

by editor @ on April 26, 2007

AppleTVHacks recently pondered when we might see some Apple TV plugin goodness from Apple itself. Well, Apple have now confirmed that they plan to do exactly that.

Apple’s CFO, Peter Oppenheimer, said yesterday in a call with financial analysts, “… we plan to periodically provide new software features and enhancements, at no charge, to our Apple TV customers.”

There is no word on when we might see the first such additions, what exactly they’ll entail, and whether there will be any interface for selecting which new features you get. However, it is certainly an exciting first step and we are looking forward to seeing what these updates provide.

What next for Apple TV hacking?

by editor @ on April 25, 2007

Whilst some interesting working is being done with plugins for the Apple TV, the number of new hacks as declined. While this is somewhat inevitable as certain milestones are achieved, we think there is still a lot to be done. Here are some of the current and possible future projects for the Apple TV.

Apple TV in your Car

AppleTVHacks is not aware of any teams currently attempting this, but we are sure it is only a matter of time. DVD players are becoming commonplace in cars, certainly in family vehicles where the kids can be kept entertained whilst travelling.

The Apple TV represents the next step in evolution for exactly this scenario, you can load up content for the kids, which they can choose between (fight over!) themselves while you concern yourself with experimenting with your cruise control. When the kids aren’t listening, you can use it to stream music through the car stereo, and everyone is happy.

Add the fact that your wireless probably reaches the Garage where the car is parked and updating the content becomes a breeze.

Content Subscriptions

Until Apple deliver a functioning install of the iTunes Store that is integrated with the Apple TV operating system, anyone looking for automated downloading of their favourite shows ready for watching when they get home from work is stuck.

The Apple TV can already handle using other media players, and so all that is needed is another source of content. Enter torrents, which combned with RSS subscriptions could automatically obtain content as it appears. All that is needed is for these elements to be tied together, maybe wrapped up in a plugin and a microwave that does the popcorn on a timer.

Man in the Middle Upgrade

This could be the most important hack to date; it would allow hacking and upgrading the Apple TV without any need to open the case or download and apply patches using a USB drive. That is of course, if it is possible….

The Apple TV uses a built in Software Update mechanism which contacts Apple’s servers to check for updates. These updates will presumably allow Apple to fix and enhance the Apple TV’s built in features (no updates have been seen yet). You may be aware that these built in features are actually just plugins to the core application, which means the Software Update system would have the ability to access the plugins.

This hack would involve tweaking the settings on your wireless router to trick your Apple TV into asking for Software Updates from your computer. Your computer could then provide additional plugins of your choosing and you’d never have had to void your warranty in the process.

Linux on the Apple TV

Obviously, any hardcore geeks are keen to see Linux on any new electronic device, and the geeks over at AwkwardTV are working on exactly that.

Whilst we’ve already seen Mac OS X on Apple TV, there would be some benefits to having Linux running. Most notably that Linux is free and might unlock features of the Apple TV for those without an OS X install to apply.

Some initial success has been made, but there is a fair way to go yet before installing Linux on the Apple TV becomes useful to anyone who isn’t doing it just for the fun of it. One to keep an eye on.

$1000 bounty still unclaimed; future bounty suggestions?

by editor @ on April 15, 2007

A week ago, in partnership with, we announced a $1000 bounty for hacking an Apple TV to use an external USB drive for storage.

We’ve been monitoring the activity through the community, and whilst many parts of the overall hack have been achieved, nobody has managed to tick all the boxes yet. The $1000 bounty is proving to be the most elusive so far, but we think the work everyone is doing will be well worth it.

Future Bounties

We’ve been receiving suggestions for what we could offer future bounties for. What would you like to see your Apple TV do now which still hasn’t been provided by a hack?

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