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Boxee is updated for Apple TV 2.3


We've covered boxee, a fantastic media center application that can run on your Mac or Apple TV. With its attractive interface and support for Hulu, boxee is what convinced my boyfriend and me to order an Apple TV. Predictably, the day our second Apple TV arrived from Apple (the first unit broke after watching just one movie), the 2.3 software update was released, nullifying our boxee goodness.

Fortunately, the boxee team has updated boxee to support 2.3. Even better, the geniuses behind USB Creator -- a tool that makes installing boxee and the XBMC on an Apple TV a snap -- have updated their awesome software to make the whole process seamless.

If you want to install boxee and XMBC on your Apple TV, this is what you want to do. You will need a USB flash drive (minimum of 512 MB, though 1 GB or higher is recommended):

  1. If you haven't updated your Apple TV to 2.3, go ahead and download and install the update via the General, "Software Update" menu.
  2. Download the latest version of USB Creator (available for Intel and PPC Macs and there is now an interrum solution available for XP and Vista users).
  3. Insert a USB flash drive into your Mac (to be safe, disconnect any other external drives before running creating the patchstick -- the drive is formatted first and if the wrong disk is selected, you could wipe important data).
  4. Run (as of this writing, the current version is 1.0b10) and leaving all the preset options in place, click "Create Using." Wait for the program to do its magic.
  5. If you've never created a USB patchstick before, unplug the USB drive and plug it back in, and check to make sure the files copied over correctly.
  6. Unplug your Apple TV and insert your newly created USB patchstick into the USB port. Plug the Apple TV back in.
  7. Wait for the tools to install (the screen will tell you when the process is over).
  8. Unplug the Apple TV again and remove the USB flash drive.
  9. Plug back in the Apple TV and wait for it to boot up. You should now have a new Boxee/XBMC menu. You can update boxee and XMBC as well as the ATV-Launcher program from that menu.
  10. Start boxee and enter in your user credentials.
  11. Enjoy the ability to watch Hulu and buy content from the iTunes Store!
If you are upgrading an existing boxee installation (say you were running boxee on firmware 2.2), you might run into the same problem I experienced: the Apple remote won't work with boxee.

To solve this problem, you need to SSH into your Apple TV. To do this, open terminal and type:

ssh frontrow@appletv.local

Enter the password frontrow.

Enter the following: rm -rf /Users/frontrow/Library/Application\ Support/BOXEE/UserData

Restart your Apple TV (unplug an re-plug it). I also had to re-run the patchstick, but then everything worked beautifully.

Boxee is free but is currently invite only. You can sign-up for an invite at or ask a friend with an account to send you an invite.

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