Tip: Get Ready for Xbox One X

Posted on October 21, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Xbox One with 14 Comments

Tip: Get Ready for Xbox One X

Anyone who is purchasing an Xbox One will want to get up and running as quickly as possible on the first day. But the sheer size of the games you’ll need to download is an impediment. Fortunately, there’s a great solution.

The issue here is easily understood: The Xbox One X supports true 4K games. But since pre-4K games are already humongous—Battlefield 1 and Forza Motorsport 7, for example, each take up about 67 GB of storage on my Xbox One S—we can expect the titles that are enhanced for Xbox One X to be even bigger. And there is nothing more disappointing than buying expensive new hardware like the Xbox One X and then waiting long periods of time while games download.

So the latest Xbox One Dashboard update, the Fall Update, includes two new features that will help mitigate this problem. And if you already have an Xbox One or Xbox One S and intend to switch to the Xbox One X, you can use these tools right now to get ready.

The basic premise here is that you can add an external USB 3.0 hard drive to your existing console, move any games you wish to use on the Xbox One X to that drive, and then, when available, pre-download those games’ 4K assets so that you can play in 4K on the new console.

Connect the new drive to the existing consoles

Once you acquire an external hard drive, connect it to your existing Xbox One/S console via an available USB port. If the console is on, you’ll be prompted to see whether you’d like to use this drive for media or for games and apps.

Choose “Format storage device” and (optionally) provide a name for the drive when prompted. You will also ask whether you’d like to install “things” (new games and apps) on the external drive by default. (What you choose here is up to you, of course. My intention is to move to the Xbox One X, so I chose to install new things on the external drive.)

Once you see a pop-up notification altering you that the external drive is now ready, open Settings and navigate to System > Storage. Here, you will see that your internal and external storage are both available.

Copy or move one game to the external hard drive

To copy or move a game from internal storage to the external HDD, select the internal drive under “Manage storage” on the right, and then select View contents from the pop-up menu that appears. This will provide you with a Games & Apps-type view in which you can select individual items and perform different actions on them. So highlight a game in the grid and then press the Menu button on your Xbox Controller and choose “Manage game” from the pop-up menu that appears.

The Manage screen appears.

Now, select the Move all (or Copy all) button and then choose Move (or Copy) from the notification that appears. The game will be moved (or copied) to the external hard drive. You can manually repeat this for each game or app you wish to move, of course.

Move multiple games to the new hard drive

If you will be copying or moving multiple games and apps, there is a better way. Or perhaps you wish to copy/move the entire contents of the drive to the new external HDD.

To do this, open Settings and navigate to System > Storage. Then, select the internal drive under “Manage storage” and choose “Transfer” from the pop-up menu that appears.

In this transfer screen, you can choose “Select all” and then “Copy selected” or “Move selected” to copy or move the selected items to the external drive. If you wish to pick which items will be copied or moved to the external drive, you can do that instead.

Backup key system settings to the new hard drive

You should also backup your key system settings to the new drive so that they are available to the Xbox One X when it arrives. To do so, navigate to Settings > System > Backup & transfer.

In the System Backup & transfer screen, select the “Back up my settings” button and then “Back up to device.” Select “Back up now” when you are prompted to back up your settings to the external HDD.

Upsize the games that are already Xbox One X Enhanced

Once you have the games and apps you want on the external HDD, you can prepare for Xbox One X further by downloading the 4K assets for those games that already support that functionality. To do so, navigate to Settings > System > Backup & transfer. In the the System Backup & transfer screen, enable the option “Download 4K game content.” Next, navigate to Settings > System > Updates and make sure the option “Keep my games & apps up to date” is enabled too.

Excited yet?

I’m prepping my own external HDD this weekend so that I can get up and running on Xbox One X as quickly as possible. But I’ll be exploring another content transfer option—network transfer—once the new console is publicly available.


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