The Official software development kit for the original xbox was called the XDK (Xbox Development Kit). This was only provided to developers on their Xbox Developer Services website (xds.xbox.com) and not via CD/DVD.
This was mainly due to the frequency in which the XDK changes, new builds would be available very frequently, at least a couple every month. This was a stark contrast to the SDKs from the previous generation that would only have a handful of releases during the whole lifetime of the console.
Unsurprisingly the XDK requires Microsoft Visual Studio as the IDE and Microsoft Visual C++ compilers. This was very welcome by existing Windows PC developers and was considerably easier to use than the PS2 or Gamecube development environments.
The following versions of the SDK have been released to the public unofficially and can be found on sites like archive.org:
It is important to remove previous installs of the SDK and the installer actively checks the version number of an installed xdk and won’t allow you to install prior versions.
You need to remove the following registry keys using regedit on windows or wine:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\XboxSDK HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\Microsoft Xbox SDK
Note that you MUST install Visual Studio 6.0 and apply Service Pack 4 and above (SP6 works) otherwise the XDK installer will not install the Samples, include or lib files so you will have an incomplete SDK!
If possible try to download the following iso if you don’t already have Visual C++:
The XDK installer checks to see if your copy of Visual C++ is up to date with Service Pack 4, but any service pack later then that will also work. You can get the latest service pack 6 from the official Microsoft website: Download Service Pack 6 for Visual Basic 6.0, Visual C++ 6.0 with Visual Source Safe 6.0d from Official Microsoft Download Center
In early versions of the XDK such as
XDK4361 it comes with an installer called
Visual Studio Processor Pack. Make sure to run this before installing the XDK.
Run the SetupXDK executable and it will guide you through the rest of the installation process.
The following are optional installers that might be useful, you don’t need these tools but they could come in helpful for debugging specific issues.
Comes with XDK 4361. It is a tool for Network debugging, useful for debugging issues with online/lan games.
The documentation folder contains a few helpful files which we have listen in the table below with a brief description of its purpose, but the main documentation comes in the form of a CHM (Windows Compiled Help Format) file called
|adadeded.xml||Seems to be an example Leaderboard xml document, something to do with xbox live leaderboards?|
|XboxSDK.chi||Compiled Help index for the CHM file|
If you had Visual C++ installed when you installed the SDK you will find a
Samples folder under
Program Files/ Microsoft Xbox SDK which contains example source code that can be compiled for the Xbox.