This similar method was mentioned by a couples on here before but because their English wasn’t too good they couldn’t get the point across. Hopefully I can.
Generally, the Apple Trailer app within your atv 2/3 basically just loads an xml file from http://trailers.apple.com/appletv/index.xml and display the content according to that xml file. Well some of the Chinese users figured out that if they changed the DNS so that trailers.apple.com points to their own IP they can load their own custom xml file and have the atv load whatever they wanted. I essentially was able to replicate this on my local machine and got the apple tv to load my custom streams and videos. What I did was go into my router and added a setting to my router to assign trailers.apple.com to the local IP address of my web server and I created my own xml file within my local website. I was able to load a lot of the popular live streams for xbmc like HBO HD etc… and play some video files, but I did find that it uses the native atv video player to play them so this means it can only play standard video files that the atv can play like mp4 files but it didn’t play flv or mkv files.
To get this working you don’t need your own web server. you just need to put your custom xml file on a website change the DNS so that trailers.apple.com points to the same ip as the site that contains your xml file and it should load. oh you also need to place this js http://trailers.apple.com/appletv/application.js file in the same directory as your index.xml file
I confirmed this works on a Non-jailbroken apple tv 3
It is very real, and the method couln’t be more simple.
There are many places that explains it but like dknight said it was started by these Chinese programmers. 99% of the info are in Chinese because the streaming contents are in Chinese. The same method could be made to work for English contents but this is really not the right place to discuss this…
Ok i’ll add a little more info as far as solution go I can tell you how to get the chinese content up and running right now. You just need to update the DNS ip in your atv 3. then open up the trailer app within the apple tv menu. FYI they have have a few English channels available like HBOHD and Fox HD.
as far as solution. One solution is simple I can easily create a php web app that provide the same functionality as an xbmc addon except it will just produce the apple trailer formatted xml just like the chinese users are doing for their content. Then you’ll be able to see the menu system and play the videos like you could from an Addon. The only problem I’m facing is that it uses the native player to play the videos which only supports apple supported formats like MP4 and such so it means only some videos would play. Some guy already created an transcoder to transcode mkv files that works with this method
Not sure if they allow me to post the steps to get the chinese content so pm me if you want to try it. Also you don’t need to setup your own DNS to point your atv to your custom xml. if you have a dd-wrt router there’s a setting in there call DNSMasq that you can add a setting which will point all request to trailers.apple.com to your local ip.
Is there any chance we could use this to find an exploit? If there were for example a malformed XML or even video file, would this have any benefit in helping bust the atv3 open, or would it lack the privileges required to be useful?