Wednesday, December 31, 2008

30 GB Microsoft Zune's Hit With "Zune 2K9 Bug"

Owners of 30 GB versions of Microsoft's Zune media player have been reporting serious issues, in what is being called by many the "Zune 2K9 Bug" or "Z2K9".

Update: Microsoft has posted the following information to the Zune support site.We have identified an issue with the Zune 30 gig not starting and have a full explanation and guidance located here.

Early this morning we were alerted by our customers that there was a widespread issue affecting our 2006 model Zune 30GB devices (a large number of which are still actively being used). The technical team jumped on the problem immediately and isolated the issue: a bug in the internal clock driver related to the way the device handles a leap year. The issue should be resolved over the next 24 hours as the time change moves to January 1, 2009. We expect the internal clock on the Zune 30GB devices will automatically reset tomorrow (noon, GMT). By tomorrow you should allow the battery to fully run out of power before the unit can restart successfully then simply ensure that your device is recharged, then turn it back on. If you’re a Zune Pass subscriber, you may need to sync your device with your PC to refresh the rights to the subscription content you have downloaded to your device.

According to Gizmodo and reports on various Zune support and fan forums, about 2 a.m. 30GB Zune's that were reset or were turned off failed when they were started back up. The failure is described by those affected as a freeze at the load screen.

Microsoft has confirmed that its 30-GB Zunes are crashing but there is no word yet on any specifics or potential workarounds. The Zune service status says, "Customers with 30-GB Zune devices may experience issues when booting their Zune hardware," Microsoft said on its Zune support site. "We're aware of the problem and are working to correct it. The Zune Social might be slow or inaccessible. Sorry for the inconvenience, and thanks for your patience!"

Gizmodo has posted a potential DIY work around "How to Revive Dead Zunes 30s" which requires some slight disassembly.

Follow Rapid Repair's guide to taking your Zune apart to step 4, so you have access to the hard drive and the battery. Disconnect BOTH the battery and hard drive, and then plug 'em back in. This apparently resets the Zune's internal clock, which brings it back to life. Put it back together, and it should be 100 percent again. (Assuming you don't screw it up.)

Disclaimer: Opening the case of your Zune will void your warranty, there is also the potential of bricking your already dead Zune and making matter worse. I strongly recommend waiting for an official fix. Proceed at your own risk!

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