Microsoft extends Xbox 360 "Red Ring of Death" warranty to cover E74 error

Microsoft extends Xbox 360 "Red Ring of Death" warranty to cover E74 error

Summary: Microsoft has extended the three year "Red Ring of Death" warranty cover it offered to Xbox 360 owners to cover a new fault - the E74 fault.

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Microsoft has extended the three year "Red Ring of Death" warranty cover it offered to Xbox 360 owners to cover a new fault - the E74 fault.

Here's Microsoft knowledge base entry on the change to the warranty:

While the majority of Xbox 360 owners continue to have a great experience with their console, we are aware that a very small percentage of our customers have reported receiving an error that displays “E74” on their screen. After investigating the issue, we have determined that the E74 error message can indicate the general hardware failure that is associated with three flashing red lights error on the console. As a result, we have decided to cover repairs related to the E74 error message under our three-year warranty program for certain general hardware failures that was announced in July 2007. We have already made improvements to the console that will reduce the likelihood of an occurrence of this issue. Detailed information related to the Xbox 360 warranty and resources for those who require repair can be found at www.xbox.com/support (www.xbox.com/support) .

Microsoft will refund to customers the amount paid for an out of warranty repair due to a general hardware failure associated with the e74 error message. Those customers should automatically receive the refund within 4-12 weeks, and no additional action by customers should be necessary. However, if a customer has not received a refund by July 1, 2009, the customer should visit www.xbox.com/support before November 1, 2009 for information on how to place a claim. All refund claims must be received on or before November 1, 2009.

Reports of this problem started appearing around mid-2008 and have been increasing in frequency. Prior to this warranty extension the fault was only covered if it occurred during the first year. Now all customers who paid for repairs should see a refund.

This warranty cover was previously reserved for consoles suffering from the "Red Ring of Death" which appeared to be a CPU/GPU issue. The E74 error seems to be down to the ANA/HANA scaling chip working its way loose.

I know a number of people who have been affected by this issue. I also know quite a few who have bought new consoles because they didn't want to pay for a repair. This change to the warranty is too late to help them out, which sucks. I also know quite a few people who have been through several consoles, which isn't a reassuring trend.

On a personal level I've wanted an Xbox 360 for some time but have always chickened out of pulling the trigger on a purchase at the last minute several times because I come across a higher than average failure rate for these consoles. This new change to the warranty might change that, but I can't help but feel that another problem is lurking just around the corner. I think I'd feel better if Microsoft just extended the Xbox 360 warranty to a full three years for all faults.

Topics: Mobility, Hardware, Microsoft

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30 comments
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  • Anyone here been hit by the ...

    ... RRoD or E74 problem?
    Adrian Kingsley-Hughes
    • RROD last October.

      It was down for almost 2 weeks due to an address mixup in Microsoft's database. Thank God I still had my PS2.

      It started freezing occasionally again last month. Once I get enough money saved up for a PS3, I'll probably trade in the 360.
      ashdude
  • This doesn't sound like a new problem

    [i]After investigating the issue, we have determined that the E74 error message can indicate the general hardware failure that is associated with three flashing red lights error on the console.[/i]

    If I understand the statement correctly, this isn't a new problem that is popping up, it is simply that the type of failure that was common in the 1st gen manifests itself as either a RROD or an E74 error. MS is simply saying they will now cover both error messages. I've yet to personally experience or hear of a single problem with the 2nd gen XBox 360 which has been out for quite some time now.

    [i]We have already made improvements to the console that will reduce the likelihood of an occurrence of this issue.[/i]

    This lends credence to my understanding that this is really only hitting gen 1 consoles.
    NonZealot
  • RE: Microsoft extends Xbox 360

    I have owned a 360 for about 18 months. I am not a hard core gamer and my kids spend more time on it than I do, but I am using it 2-3 days a week for a couple of hours. Other than one game that stopped working for some reason, I have had no issues. I keep it on top of my entertainment center and not near any other components to avoid heat related problems. If I had to guess, these issues do sound heat related more than anything.
    FJRC
  • RE: Microsoft extends Xbox 360

    My son has a 360 that he's had for about 18 months now. On his the GPU died about 2 months ago, and a screw came loose on the DVD reader that caused some read errors.

    No red ring or E74 errors though.
    Badgered
  • I had the RRoD.

    I had just bought GTA4, and I was rabid for it.. I actually went straight out and bought another console. I sent my old one in for repairs, and then sold it to a friend when it came back.
    lostarchitect
  • Not surprised...

    They will likely be supporting this issue till they drop this console for a newer console, like they did with Xbox original.

    On another note, and buyer beware, Xbox 360 and the wireless adapter are not compatable with WPA2. Found this out recently when I tried upgrading my network, due to the hacks available for WEP and WPA1. When I asked MS about this, the confirmed it was an issue, but left me with the indication that they were not going to do a thing about it.

    Needless to say I am going to buy a 3rd party Wireless N Gaming adapter from Linksys, which supports WPA2, and bypass the Chincy MS adapter. Then I am going to send my MS wireless adapter back to MS C.O.D.
    xXSpeedzXx
    • Very helpful info, thanks!

      I am moving and will soon have to go wireless for my media PC and XBox but neither currently have wireless capability. Never thought about using a wireless bridge but that is a fantastic idea! I also didn't realize the XBox adapter didn't support WPA2 so you really saved me a ton of time. Thanks again!
      NonZealot
    • WPA2

      I think there may be an issue with your router as I've had my 360 connected to a WPA2 network for several years without issue.
      captain_pudding
  • Only M$ can turn crap into a best seller.

    Seriously. Why do people put up with Microsoft? I still have a working NES, SNES, and a Playstation. Any hope of finding a working 360 ten years from now is pretty much zilch.
    ashdude
    • Let me know when you've developed something better

      You seem to know what a console should be. Maybe you can get some VC and produce one.
      happyharry_z
    • Apple has the monopoly on that one

      [i]Only M$ can turn crap into a best seller.[/i]

      Um, no, Apple does this time and time again. Apple have yet to release anything that isn't crap.
      NonZealot
      • Why aren't I surprised

        NonZealot giving his views and yet providing no evidence - anyone
        surprised? not me, Same crap, different day.
        Kaiwai
        • If you look, the author's name is visible in the post list.

          ZDNet can't prevent you from clicking on posts by people you don't like. That one's up to you. :)
          NonZealot
    • so what?

      I have a working P1 133 in my basement still and a load of dead athlon xp's and p3/p4's

      would you like to tell me how awesome the pentium 1 is?

      higher rate of failure is the price of higher performance in smaller packages!
      dougie81
      • Two problems with that...

        [i]"I have a working P1 133 in my basement still and a load of dead athlon xp's and p3/p4's

        would you like to tell me how awesome the pentium 1 is?

        higher rate of failure is the price of higher performance in smaller packages!"[/i]

        1st problem. Who made your P1 133? I bet it wasn't Microsoft.

        2nd problem. The PS3 has the same if not better performance as the 360. But the PS3 doesn't have the high failure rate.
        ashdude
    • ....

      [i]I still have a working NES, SNES, and a Playstation.[/i]

      And you still play them?
      Badgered
      • I do

        My daughter loves playing Mario on the SNES.

        Those old games are still just as much fun to play as they were when new.

        The rest of the time I kick back and play on today's superior gaming platform, [b]the PC[/b].

        :)
        dragosani
      • yep.

        i have a nes, a snes, and a colecovision! they all still work and i pull them out now and again.
        lostarchitect
      • Yes.

        It's called "classic gaming" and used game stores are rather common. I just bought Descent Maximum for my Playstation today for $10.
        ashdude