It's become a common joke that the new Xbox 360 Slim prevents Red Rings of Death simply because Microsoft took the red lights out. However, it's been revealed that there is a real preventative measure built into the Slim, as opposed to a simple aesthetic avoidance of the issue. The new Xbox 360 SKU voluntarily shuts itself down if it's not ventilating properly, in a bid to avoid damage from overheating.
If the 360 detects that it isn't getting enough ventilation, it will give the player a warning message before entering shutdown mode, whereupon its power light will flash. The system can then be switched on again once the light ceases to flash. The idea is to increase the lifespan of the console by powering down before it gets too hot and suffers internal damage.
A smart idea in theory, but one wonders how annoying a 360 that shuts itself down will be, especially if Microsoft hasn't fixed the issue of overheating in the first place. Has Microsoft fixed the RRoD only to replace it with an even more embarrassing and widespread problem? We'll have to wait and see just how often this shutdown feature needs to kick in before we know for sure. I just have a bad feeling about this, given Microsoft's commitment to making terrible things happen.
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