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Out of curiosity, how could you decrypt or modify the ti-84 operating system?

What type of software would you need?
I suggest you look at this file and this topic. For disassembling the OS, many of our members here use IDA Pro. If you just want to "patch" the operating system, you don't need to rebuild the whole .8xu again, you can just modify the area you want to change on the calculator itself.
It neeeds to be noted that if you do go about making modifications to the 84+ os, you cannot distribute it.
BrandonW is the expert on patching TI's own operating systems, and AHelper2 and BrandonW are the leaders in creating completely custom operating systems, but you can indeed write "patches" for TI's OSes. The legality is of course quite questionable, so let's be sure to keep on the correct side of the DMCA in this discussion.
Are there any examples of OS patches?
I made one that replaces "TI-84+ Silver Edition" with something like "TI-84+ Merth Edition". However, as has been noted, it's apparently illegal is distribute such a thing.
As far as I know, it isn't illegal to distribute a .patch file of the changes. I believe that was done somewhere for producing my 84+/SE-OS-on-83+SE 8XU.
Ah, I see--what about the actual 8xu?
TI very much does not like that, even for the sake of preserving old official versions.
Aren't there a whole bunch of custom .8xu's on ticalc?
http://www.ticalc.org/pub/83plus/os/
Those are from-scratch, not based on TI's official copyrighted OS. That's where the legal concern is.
Ah, I see, that makes sense. Has anyone made an actually worthwhile downloadable OS?
Most of those OS's are just crap. They don't do anything.
Exactly, that's what I found. I'm wondering if someone actually has ever made a good one.
A good one would probably be a patched and edited Ti OS, with DCS incorporated along with USB8X/MSD8X/USBTOOLS and Graph3 and Axe.
Gin, youíre on to something. Iíve always felt like creating a gaming OS, like a wii system menu. Doors could be modeled for a desktop OS, and I always liked the idea of a complex math OS, with everything directed towards LOTS of different math features.
I was once working on a development OS, that you could somehow (idk how) dual boot with TIOS and swtich to and then test on TIOS. I didnít get very far though.
What I would like to see is somebody finishing one of the old OSís people were making, like Brandonís.

I use patches a lot, actually. Brandonís are awesome, and ThePenguin has MANY awesome tools and patches he wrote for fun, and can be used as models or examples for writing your own Smile Apps like Symbolic, Omnicalc, and Graph3 can be used to show how powerful integrated hooks can be used instead of modifying the actual OS. The only downside is that they are nullified in the case of RAM clears, but zStart can help some.
The OS I was working on, OS2, does support dual booting. You can switch between useful (TI-OS) and useless (OS2) all day long!
But where can I find these great patches/examples/tutorials?
Brandon, I got it running, however, I canít figure out how to use it. Or add to it.
Omnimaga is a great place to start, although their archives donít have much. They mostly host programs via attachments on forum posts. Browse, my friend.

WikiTi has a lot of good stuff. Iíve actually read everything there. I still couldnít get my USB working though xD
I wish it could run without extra RAM! but thats another topic.
Filesystem based os, anyone?
Dual-booting would be cool.

But Brandon, could you possibly continue working on the usb8x/msd8x stuff? i really like it, and I would like it to be more user-friendly.
  
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