Today I was tasked with testing a Microsoft Zune prior to installation for one of our users. It’s the first time I have gotten intimate with one. The Zune was a neat looking little brown device. It has a nice size screen and the interface is ultra-simplistic.
So I begin to test it. I used the first spare machine I could find to test it. I insert the CD and the Zune software tells me that there is a problem with the device “or Windows.” I checked the machine and what do I find? It’s an XP SP1 machine. Then I get my hands on another machine that I knew had SP2. The software begins to install. It starts by downloading and installing updates. That goes well (though quite slow). Then it begins to download “firmware.” The “Downloading firmware” message stays at 0% for several minutes before I cancelled the install and tried again. I had the same problem when I tried again.
I suspected it was some sort of weird networking issue, so I tried the install on a machine outside the firewall. This works! At that point I was pretty confident it was some sort of blocked port. My coworker suggests installing a program called “Active Ports” to the machine and trying the install again. When I did this, I saw that the Zune software was attempting to communicate over port 3074. This is only during the firmware update. It works properly when it updates it’s own software. I looked up the port number and found out that it is the “XBOX Game Port.”
Now why the hell would Microsoft do that? Why does the firmware need to be transported using port 3074? I can’t understand it.