Clearing the System Cache

With the release of the Spring Update we did provide a way for our product support engineers to help users diagnose and clear content from their system cache.  This is most useful for the engineers to help those who are unable to download a game update, a system update, or who are having problems with their achievements.

The instructions for performing these steps were posted on in the forums by one of our support folks and wow….in a flash it seems like every website and forum site picked up on it and started to spread the word.

Below is the official word on this feature which the PR team is sending out to gamesites and news organizations who’ve asked about it.

The HDD cache clearing feature is a part of the Xbox 360 technical support process and is only supported in those instances. While the cache clearing operation will not harm or render your console inoperable, it should only be used when instructed by the Microsoft customer support staff. As always, any gamers experiencing any issues with their console should contact 800-4-MYXBOX instead of attempting to troubleshoot on their own via this feature.

I can provide a little more context on this. Clearing out your system cache:

  • Will clear out the temporary copies of achievements and gamertiles on Memory Units or Hard Drives (note these get re-downloaded when re-connected to Xbox Live)
  • Will clear out Game Updates stored on Memory Units or Hard Drives. (note these will get re-downloaded when launching that Game while connected to Xbox Live)
  • Will not clear out system updates.
  • Will not clear out the game areas of the hard drive where game titles cache their own information


-IndieGames (Daryl Welsh)

Comments (9)

  1. Jake says:

    It’s interesting that this system update uses a "generic", one-size-fits all button combination for cache clearing, as compared to the previous (what’s believed to be) serial-specific reformat code for the original Xbox.

    (For people that experienced issues with the original Xbox when loading games, you could press a series of specific buttons on the controller in the About screen to "reformat" or, more likely, clear the user data partition. This code, though, was apparently specific to each Xbox and so calling tech support was a necessity, and you were only offered the code under a certain set of conditions – just asking for it for convenience won’t work.)

    This changed drastically for the Xbox 360 – it’s clearly possible to wipe any storage device connected to the console.

    While officially I doubt that the hosts here can talk about the differences between Xbox and 360 in this matter (specifically, why they chose generic vs. specific if the cache clearing is only meant to be performed by tech support), I guess it’s decent for the support staff to have the existence of a catch-all code for troubleshooting of this type.

  2. twenty5 x you says:

    but, is this going to delete my copy of geo wars?

  3. Xheartagram_Xbox360 says:

    i have a problem with my harddrive, actually its not really a problem but when it is empty it only has 13 gigabite instead of 20, is this a common problem? or do i have to contact microsoft?

  4. Nik says:

    Thats how much the hard drive has, the missing 7gb is system files, (I think its 6.2 actually)

  5. have original xbox! got new hdtv(hp lc3760n) it supports 720p, played new game ERAGONE that say it supports 720p but it only plays 480p (yes i have changed console to recognize 720p and used a component xbox cable ) what gives?? can anyone help explain!!Why buy a game that supose to play 720p but doesnt