The story of the Trojan Horse must be a favorite among video game console manufacturers, because software updates these days often come with more than bargained for -- today, Microsoft issued a mandatory Xbox 360 update, reportedly for a single bugfix, but which seems to have coincidentally halted scores of pirates and hackers from playing Call of Duty: Black Ops and Modern Warfare 2 on the console. Members of the Xbox-Scene forums noted the update was taking suspiciously long to download, discovered that backup copies of these games ceased to work, and presently believe that Microsoft included a patch for these two games to enable an anti-piracy feature that specifically targets burned copies. What does the mandatory update do for you if you're not part of the hacking scene? It merely enables the console to automatically boot a pre-inserted game when you power it on, a feature that was accidentally disabled in November.

[Thanks, Brian]

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Xbox 360 mandatory update restores boot to disc, detains Call of Duty pirates for a tad