Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

"Install Other OS" Feature Removed From the PS3

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the security-huh dept.

Operating Systems 739

Hann1bal writes "The next system software update for the PlayStation 3 system will be released on April 1, 2010 (JST), and will disable the 'Install Other OS' feature that was available on the PS3 systems prior to the current slimmer models, launched in September 2009. This feature enabled users to install an operating system, but due to security concerns, Sony Computer Entertainment will remove the functionality through the 3.21 system software update." Updated 3:49 GMT by timothy: An anonymous reader writes "This comes as something of a surprise. Particularly because only a month ago Sony Computer Entertainment management seemed committed to the continued support of the Other OS option on the PS3."

cancel ×

739 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Bummer ... (1st (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31652964)

Bummer ....

Always look on the bright side of life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653174)

At least now, it's only a matter of time before the system gets hacked proper.

Re:Bummer ... (1st (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653346)

Aw man, this means I'll have to take off the "My other OS is Other OS" sticker on my PS3.

Not an April Fools' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653368)

http://twitter.com/pinskia/status/11230057232 [twitter.com]

This isn't looking good.

Sorry kids (5, Informative)

piripiri (1476949) | more than 4 years ago | (#31652970)

It doesn't run linux anymore.

Re:Sorry kids (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653022)

I'm a flaming PS3 fanboy, I think the games on the PS3 are awesome and significantly better than the 360's, and I really love the full functionality of this machine.

But this really has me seeing red.

I've been using my PS3 for all kinds of shit. It's got firefox and open office and all kinds of productive capabilities. In linux, the Cell rips DVDs much faster than a conventional CPU can.

I understand that the black hat community is actively trying to hack the PS3 because it's proven to be very well protected from pirates. I realize Sony is a business and they are simply trying to protect their rights. But this is removing functionality I paid for and own. Telling me this is my option, my choice, but I can no longer log into the Playstation network (which is required to play many games I downloaded for a fee... you have to be connected to their network or the game won't work... which I didn't know until I had a period without a connection) is no option at all.

They are taking away something that belongs to me. I am really pissed that they couldn't figure out a better way to thwart hackers. Even their own version of Linux, some new version of YDL, that they control, would be better than completely taking away this feature.

I sold my 360 after it was fixed from a RROD (I still play my SNES and don't need a gimp machine that can't last 20 years). I won't go back to xbox. But I am probably not going to go back to PS4 or PS5. Once this generation is over, I'm back to PC gaming. Fucking Sony. Once again, you've gone a little too far in fighting pirates. Like that root kit thing that was ages ago... people have a hard time forgetting that shit.

Re:Sorry kids (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653080)

By the way, when I do go to PC gaming, I will probably be able to pirate most of the multiplatform games on your systems. I already have GT4 on my PC (though I also own a PS3 copy).

I don't like pirates... they suck profit out of a tough field and generally make the world a worse place out of their selfishness... but I pirate games all the time just as a demo, and buy the ones that don't suck.

And now I'm just another step closer to just emulating your games that are great, or pirating the PC versions of multiplatforms. And even if I decide not to do any of that... I won't be buying your games. I will buy very few PS3 games... Only really awesome stuff instead of tons of stuff (I have 106 PS3 games right now... no exaggeration, and I have hundreds of PS2 games.)

since I won't buy any new playstations, I certainly won't buy any software legally for them either.

In your quest to curb piracy, you're absolutely lost some sales. You've taken away a feature I use and love and already paid you for. This is absolutely unacceptable.

Instead of a PSP, I'm getting a Pandora.

Sorry, Grandpa. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653208)

Thanks for the support. Us kids with our loud music and our "Linux" and our "MP3s" and our "HTTP servers" and our mySQL and our PHP (LAMP) and our "Internet" sure do suck.

Thanks for setting us straight!

We're all pirates or buccaneers or visigoths or whatever term your big-content masters gave you to parrot. We admit it. I speak for all us visigoths when I say I'm SORRY and you're welcome to disclaim us "kids" and never use any of the software we developed again.

It doesn't matter in the long run whether linux will run on the new PS3/PS4/PS5 or whether you old folks that call us kids are relevant. You'll be relevant like BASIC-II and BPL and Pascal.

Enjoy your retirement home, and stop yelling. We'll keep partying on the grass.

Junior

Re:Sorry kids (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653268)

People like you are why developers flee from the PC platform in the first place. The reason why we have draconian DRM that breaks whenever you go offline with your computer. You are the asshole that causes fewer games to include PC in their multi-platform releases. Because of you there won't be GTA5 on the PC, much like the latest game from Rockstar, Red Dead Revolver, is only for PS3 and 360.

I, as a PC gamer, have one thing to tell you: Go fuck yourself.

Re:Sorry kids (-1, Flamebait)

GNUALMAFUERTE (697061) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653444)

No, the reason why we have draconian DRM is that people like you keep buying privative software. Do you truly believe that the software industry will halt? that if you don't pay for software humanity will stop producing software? Try again.

You can't stop innovation. People will create, no matter what you do. If we ALL stopped buying ANY kind of software for 24 months we'll see a new copyright law that doesn't suck, we'll see software that is standards compliant, in short, the world would change. And all you have to do, is just use only Free Software for 24 months, and then, you'll be using Free Software for ever, because all software will be Free. We'll still pay for software, just in a different way.

It's people like you, that complain about DRM and then rush to the iTunes store to get a new song that are keeping us in the dark ages of information.

Re:Sorry kids (4, Insightful)

Kenoli (934612) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653296)

I don't like pirates... they suck profit out of a tough field and generally make the world a worse place out of their selfishness... but I pirate games all the time just as a demo, and buy the ones that don't suck.

I guess it's okay if you do it.

Re:Sorry kids (1)

Sensible Clod (771142) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653414)

I have been saving up for a PS3 and a PS3 only, out of all the consoles, because I thought I would be able to put Linux on it. 100% of my non-PC games are for PS2.

Looks like I'm saving up for something else.

Re:Sorry kids (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653152)

Like that root kit thing that was ages ago... people have a hard time forgetting that shit.

apparently not since it didn't seem to keep you from buying the PS3 and being a "flaming fanboy"

something tells me you'll be first in line for the next PS

Re:Sorry kids (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653204)

something tells me you'll be first in line for the next PS

That's just the presumptuous twat in you.

Re:Sorry kids (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653370)

The fact that you admit you're a "flaming PS3 fanboy" pretty much makes your following statement worthless. I own both systems and cross platform games are typically better on the 360.

PS3 is great for Bluray and exclusive games.

The 360 is the superior gaming system. Plus why would you sell a Red Ringed system? Who the heck bought that? And if you returned it they would have sent you a perfectly fine replacement. That makes zero sense but then again you're a flaming PS3 fanboy which means you're loyalty to a brand gets in the way of rational thought.

Re:Sorry kids (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653036)

it never failed to run linux. Sony just doesn't want to support it anymore.

It'll still happen anyway, I'm sure.

Re:Sorry kids (1)

dudpixel (1429789) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653068)

It doesn't run the "Other" OS anymore.

there, fixed it for you.

Re:Sorry kids (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653374)

there, fixed it for you.

Gawd that joke is getting lame

Re:Sorry kids (1)

dunezone (899268) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653082)

Even with LINUX installed what could you actually do? From my understanding the majority of the actual power of the PS3 was accessible from LINUX.

Re:Sorry kids (2, Informative)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653114)

Websurfing using the full capabilities of an HDTV, playing any number of emulated old-school console games just to name a few.

Re:Sorry kids (1)

rwven (663186) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653304)

"full capabilities of an hdtv?" I have a 24" monitor on my desk in the next room with higher resolution than my 1080P in the living room. The "full capabilities" of HDTVs were outdated years before they hit store shelves.

That said, you can surf the web right on the PS3 w/out linux at all.

You can play emulated games on the PS3 as well, or you can just use your desktop or laptop computer. They sell them on PSN all the time. ;-)

Re:Sorry kids (1)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653402)

That said, you can surf the web right on the PS3 w/out linux at all.

Oh cool. I guessed I missed in the article where they stated they were updating to flash 10 and that I could use a real browser.

Re:Sorry kids (1)

$pace6host (865145) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653440)

That said, you can surf the web right on the PS3 w/out linux at all.

As a new "slim" PS3 owner, I beg to differ - you can't really surf the web using the PS3 browser. Not well, anyway. I encounter stuff all the time that won't display properly (video from CBS.COM is a recent example). My wife would rather watch streaming video on her 15" laptop than try to get the PS3 browser to navigate to the right website and take the gamble that it might actually display on the 67" HDTV. My attempts to convince her otherwise usually end in me giving up 10 minutes later, with the PS3 browser disappointing me. But obviously, I personally won't be losing any functionality with this update, since the slim never had the "Install Other OS".

Re:Sorry kids (4, Insightful)

Reservoir Penguin (611789) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653142)

It was a great platform to get your hands wet with Cell programming for one thing, as it was the most accessible cell platform. Plus I know of organizations that setup PS3 supercomputer clusters. There was eve an article on Slashdot a few months ago about military (air force) setting up a test cluster. I wonder what happens to them now. Stupid decision, IMHO.

Cell is a dead end (5, Insightful)

symbolset (646467) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653336)

It might have amounted to something yesterday. Now it's just another fringe platform. In the long story of computer history there have been many processors that have been marginalized by their vendors when they really did rock. The Cell is one, and now it's lost.

The thing is, I expected that from Sony because that's what they do - so I never bothered to master programming for Cell. They just don't get it. They never did and they never will. They've got some world class engineers and the poor bastards are restrained from ruling the world by the idiots they have in marketing and the executive branch.

To be fair, Toshiba and IBM (who participated in the Cell design) don't get it either - they'll never release a Cell platform that normal people can afford, and so they'll avoid the synergy that takes it from the fringe to dominance. It'll live and die in their mainframes and that's it - and they'll make a mint migrating their customers to the next fringe platform because God & Everybody knows you can't run mainframe OS's on x86 harware (right?).

But Sony? No, I expect this from Sony. Some people will find a way to break their DRM and run any OS you want on the thing now - but it's too late. That's too marginal and conditional for people who build stuff. Dammit Sony: we have enough stuff that doesn't work with our other stuff! Will you quit with the breaking flexibility please?

Re:Sorry kids (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653460)

military (air force) setting up a test cluster.

Perhaps this is the "security concern" they are talking about. Our military isn't the only one that can get their hands on PS3s.

Re:Sorry kids (1)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653156)

So 2009 was the year of Linux...on the PS3 at least.

False Advertising? (1, Troll)

toastar (573882) | more than 4 years ago | (#31652974)

This is BS, I don't see this being a good PR move, Possibly might even fall into

Re:False Advertising? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653002)

Have you ever seen Sony do a good PR move?

Re:False Advertising? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653330)

In retrospect, lying about the hardware capabilities of every home console they've ever released was probably a good PR move.

Install before update ok? (1)

craigeryjohn (1153079) | more than 4 years ago | (#31652978)

Does anyone know if we can install another OS BEFORE the update and still keep it? I don't want to lose the option just because I haven't exercised it yet.

Re:Install before update ok? (3, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653024)

No, the other OS will become inaccessible after the firmware update (the linked article warns users to back up any data on their "Other OS" partition prior to the firmware update).

You could just not install the firmware update, but then you can't use a lot of online features that check for current firmware.

Re:Install before update ok? (4, Informative)

adamstew (909658) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653028)

from TFA:

For those PS3 users who are currently using the “Other OS” feature but choose to install the system software update, to avoid data loss they first need to back-up any data stored within the hard drive partition used by the “Other OS,” as they will not be able to access that data following the update.

It looks like if you have an OS installed and do the update, the OS gets zapped as a part of the update.

Re:Install before update ok? (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653450)

Sounds like it's just locked, not zapped. Like a write-only partition, except you don't get to really write to it either. :P

playstation blog update says no access (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653034)

It says if you have data on a linux partition before you update, you must copy it off because you won't have access to it after the update.

So that sounds like you'll be unable to run linux after the update.

Re:Install before update ok? (3, Informative)

Nunavut (1662173) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653050)

As per TFA: "For those PS3 users who are currently using the “Other OS” feature but choose to install the system software update, to avoid data loss they first need to back-up any data stored within the hard drive partition used by the “Other OS,” as they will not be able to access that data following the update." They'll also prevent older versions from signing in to PSN; which totally sucks as I do have Linux installed on my PS3 and love to play MAG!

On April 1? (5, Insightful)

KiltedKnight (171132) | more than 4 years ago | (#31652982)

Something sounds awfully fishy about this. If it's real, that's not exactly a day I'd want to release something like this.

Fishy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653210)

Poisson d'Avril much?

Re:On April 1? (1)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653430)

It's the perfect day. When people start complaining, everyone will dismiss it as an April Fool's joke.

And if the baclash before then is too much, they they can say the whole thing was an elaborate April Fool's joke.

what are the security concerns? (1)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#31652988)

It's not totally implausible that the feature allows some sort of exploit, but I can't seem to find anything about one actually existing, or it having come up in the past as a security concern. Is that just a cover to remove it, or are there actually security concerns?

Re:what are the security concerns? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653006)

http://games.slashdot.org/story/10/01/27/1534214/PlayStation-3-Hack-Released-Online

Re:what are the security concerns? (4, Interesting)

malloc (30902) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653030)

GeoHot's hack [blogspot.com] was obviously way easier to do because he had a powerful userspace to work from.

Perhaps this is what's spooking Sony.

Re:what are the security concerns? (4, Funny)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653298)

Ah, that makes sense--- so it's Sony's security they're worried about, rather than, as the press release implies, the security of Playstation owners.

Re:what are the security concerns? (3, Interesting)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653258)

It's not totally implausible that the feature allows some sort of exploit, but I can't seem to find anything about one actually existing, or it having come up in the past as a security concern. Is that just a cover to remove it, or are there actually security concerns?

I think it's a huge security concern that Sony is trying to plug up without anyone noticing. Linux has access to all the hardware of the PS3 when it's the OS being ran (implementation isn't perfect yet though). Including it's blue ray disc reader that a lot of people don't normally have access to. This is how the Dreamcast was hacked even though it ran special 1 gig discs. People figured out how to hook the Dreamcast to a computer and make the Dreamcast become an external drive to read the discs and send them to the computer allowing everyone to pirate the games. Now we have the first signs of the PS3 being hacked, removing the Other OS feature removes one problem of Linux no longer being able to be used to install/flash the BIOS for the future cracked firmware (a la PSP style hacks), but it also removes the option of having the PS3 being turned into an external drive to read possible 'hidden' disc data that would only be read with PS3 firmware code.

Re:what are the security concerns? (3, Informative)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653400)

No, that's not true. The "Other OS" feature runs through a hypervisor which limits full access to the cell processor and restricts access to the GPU.

Re:what are the security concerns? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653320)

That you would buy a ps3 and only play free open source opengl supported games.

With that removed, let the modding begin (1)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 4 years ago | (#31652998)

Now might be a time for the folks @ ps2dev to be a bit less arrogant/worrisome and allow things to be opened up.

While they do have some valid concerns, their excuses are wearing thin.

And a big fat... (1)

galvanash (631838) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653000)

...screw you right back atcha Sony!

"Other OS" and graphics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653014)

I heard the Other OS never had access to hardware accelerated graphic functions.

Re:"Other OS" and graphics (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653052)

You heard right. Even the YDL distro designed for PS3 installation was so slow and artificially hampered that it had little use outside of curiosity for the occasional hobbyist. I touched it once and that was it, it was painful.

Re:"Other OS" and graphics (1)

toastar (573882) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653212)

Twice the memory bandwidth would have made a useful platform.

Aww. (1)

DryGrian (1775520) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653020)

Guess I'll have to get on installing that copy of Yellow Dog Linux I have kicking around.

Greedy idiot kids (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653042)

This is what happens when Sony gives us a limited, but useful, homebrew/open source support and an idiotic media-whoring kid decides to use it to attack Sony's OS security for no good reason.

Thanks, geohot. Good fucking job, you've managed nothing practically useful with your attack, but you pissed Sony off and now a) nobody can duplicate it any more, at least not if they want to keep using their PS3s for on-line gaming, b) the rest of us who didn't care for your retarded antics are now screwed.

-- Anonymous Hacker.

Re:Greedy idiot kids (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653098)

Petulance...

Re:Greedy idiot kids (0)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653164)

You should be blaming Sony, not geohot. After all, if he accomplished nothing like you say he did, then Sony is being the irrational fuckwad here.

Sony is being the abusive father who punishes all of his children for the wrongdoings of a single. Instead of blaming Sony, like you should, you blame geohot, like Sony wants you to.

Re:Greedy idiot kids (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653248)

After all, if he accomplished nothing like you say he did, then Sony is being the irrational fuckwad here.

Geohot accomplished nothing useful for homebrew. There's some talk of potential GPU use, but he hasn't contributed a single line of code towards actually getting GPU code running, nor has he even looked into it. On the other hand, hypervisor compromise does enable other undesirable things for sony, like piracy in the future.

Yes, Sony sucks for taking this decision, but it was triggered by geohot's ego and media whoring. He just wants to be known as the guy who cracked the PS3, he didn't do it for any practical reason.

Re:Greedy idiot kids (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653372)

You should learn to fucking read before telling other people what to do.

"accomplishing nothing" is very different then " nothing practically useful".

Re:Greedy idiot kids (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653222)

No, it doesn't seem that Sony ever gave you anything, if they can take it back whenever they want without you having any say. You are a serf who was granted some small favor from his lord. That small favor was taken back because one of you dared to question him; but sooner or later, for any reason or no reason, lord Sony might have changed their mind anyway.

Either the PlayStation 3 was secure, or it wasn't. If it was, then there is no reason to take any functionality away. If it wasn't, then it was simply a matter of time before someone, somewhere, by some method, did something that Sony didn't like. Either way, it's all because of Sony. They knew what kind of game they were playing; they've played it a dozen times before, and lost every time.

As for him achieving nothing useful, and as to whether he had any damn good reason; you have no idea precisely what he achieved, nor what could yet be achieved by him or others as a result of what he achieved.

Re:Greedy idiot kids (1)

rwven (663186) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653322)

If Sony wasn't so overbearing and stupid with their anti-homebrew efforts, people wouldn't have to "attack" their security.

Re:Greedy idiot kids (1)

marcansoft (727665) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653382)

Overbearing and stupid? They're the only mainstream videogame console manufacturer so far to have embraced homebrew officially (XNA doesn't count, that's basically like the iPhone App Store only worse).

Sure, it could be better, but you can't say they haven't tried until now.

Emulator trouble? (1)

yeshuawatso (1774190) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653044)

I wonder if this has anything to do with emulators running on YellowDog? It might have something to do with the new wiimote-like globe things and Sony not being able to lock them down like the GPU.

I'll take my full refund now sony... Shipping it b (5, Insightful)

gearloos (816828) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653070)

How can they sell something with a certain set of features and then just take it away? Thats like Ford saying we are disabling the air conditioners that were previously working on pre 2008 vehicles. WTF? I know, it didn't (doen't) really work all that well (slow) but I did run PowerPC Ubuntu on mine. This is more of an "eroding consumer rights" issue. Why now, considering the rootkit etc.. This just proves once again that Sony gives a rats ass about its customers rights.

Re:I'll take my full refund now sony... Shipping i (1)

Renraku (518261) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653180)

I think that they'd try to point back to the EULA that they can take 'update' as they see fit, but it would be like your car dealer 'updating' your XM radio to a normal one. It won't stand up in court on any planet (except maybe Texas).

Re:I'll take my full refund now sony... Shipping i (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653394)

That is planet Texas, thank you very much.

Re:I'll take my full refund now sony... Shipping i (1)

yeshuawatso (1774190) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653186)

You should know Big Media's motto: "It's better to be in the tent pissing out, than out of the tent pissing in."

Re:I'll take my full refund now sony... Shipping i (1)

nobodyman (90587) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653302)

Well, pretty much killed linux on the PS2 as well, so anyone who is surprised by this move doesn't know them very well.

Re:I'll take my full refund now sony... Shipping i (1)

kurt555gs (309278) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653386)

There is no such thing as "consumer rights". There are "customer rights", but being a customer to be sold, and not a consumer to be culled has gone away. Remember Sony is run by the movie division. IP (theirs) is all that matters.

Re:I'll take my full refund now sony... Shipping i (1)

EvanED (569694) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653388)

My question is: did they advertise the "other OS" thing as a feature of the PS3?

If so, now that they are removing it, would you have a case if you took them to small claims court for false advertising? You might want to consider trying that actually, if you feel like parting with your PS3.

It was going to happen.. (5, Interesting)

Kagato (116051) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653076)

People finally got into the Hypervisor on the PS3. That's pretty much the key to everything from legitimate homebrew to illegitimate pirating. I don't see a way for Sony to secure things in Linux. The Genie is out of the bottle. So this is the option they have taken. It's sad to see even though I never used Linux on it, or know anyone who did. It was nice to know the option was there.

Supercomputing (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653126)

Some people are going to be very unhappy [arstechnica.com] about this. Unless it's an early April Fools.

Re:Supercomputing (1)

fotbr (855184) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653146)

I doubt they're updating the firmware on those machines, and I doubt they're using the same branch of firmware in the first place.

Re:It was going to happen.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653150)

People got into the hypervisor by soldering stuff to the RAM and pushing a button over 100 times, rebooting in between, until it works. Not exactly a practical attack for end-user piracy.

Re:It was going to happen.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653162)

This won't stop the hackers, though. They'll hack away using older firmware. Once they know their way around the system well enough, they'll publish hacks that work for the newer firmware as well.

Sony is merely delaying the inevitable and screwing over their loyal fans here.

Re:It was going to happen.. (2, Interesting)

ArundelCastle (1581543) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653314)

Agreed. Unfortunately it sounds like Geoffrey Levand -- "PS3-Linux maintainer" cited in updated TFA link -- is soon to be reallocated. (pun not inten.. well maybe a little)
If true, obviously a decision was made within the last 4 weeks to close this particular back door. There are cases in the past where the Sony rep for one region (EU oftentimes) contradicts official word from another. I suspect this is just a more recent decision.

Will see how things shake down this week. I honestly believe it's too early for April Fools, and the 1st is just the last day of the work week, because of Good Friday. They won't do a firmware patch on an overtime day. Very unfortunate timing, but the comment threads and wild speculation are more interesting than just blind rage.

I think that if you call Customer Support, they will be happy to tell you that you can purchase a new, cheaper(!) PS3 Slim, and leave your older model's firmware unpatched. And I suspect that's how they will get around any threat of lawsuits. It is not a forced change, just like you are not forced to be searched in an airport if you choose not to board a plane. As a long time PSP owner, I have been denying firmware updates for years, and I did indeed buy another recently to make use of PSN. Having both options is more "valuable" to me than choosing one or the other.

Sony's unique business model (4, Funny)

straponego (521991) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653086)

Most tech products improve during their life cycle. Not Sony's. Emulation, Linux... every iteration removes one more feature. By the end of the year, they hope to have removed sound from the PS3, and a year from now the PS3 Omega will do nothing at all.

Re:Sony's unique business model (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653166)

Eventually, someone will use a PS3 to break a window and commit robbery, and Sony will just start selling the idea of a PS3, until ideas become dangerous.

Re:Sony's unique business model (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653274)

This should be modded "insightful" rather than "funny." It's the reason I never buy Sony products, other than, well, all the other reasons. You never know when they're going to break perfectly good features and functionality.

Re:Sony's unique business model (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653340)

Seems like it does nothing at all, nothing at all, nothing at all.

Re:Sony's unique business model (1)

mathx314 (1365325) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653360)

I dunno, they had this neat technology called "rumble" that they introduced partway through the life cycle, and it seemed to catch on pretty well ;D

Re:Sony's unique business model (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653448)

it was meant to come out at release, but didn't.

Backlash? (5, Informative)

nukem996 (624036) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653136)

I bought my PS3 for two things, cell development and games. So to play games I need the latest firmware but the latest firmware makes it impossible for me to do cell development. This was an advertised feature when I bought it(a few months after launch) so I don't see how Sony can do this without facing a class action suite.

Re:Backlash? (1)

pontifier (601767) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653286)

I hear ya, and I'm with ya.

Best quote fta (2, Insightful)

Kral_Blbec (1201285) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653138)

In addition, disabling the “Other OS” feature will help ensure that PS3 owners will continue to have access to the broad range of gaming and entertainment content from SCE and its content partners on a more secure system.

lulz...

Obviously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653184)

This is an April fool's joke! Sony has a wicked sense of humor, don't you think?

EFF Help? (5, Interesting)

flerchin (179012) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653198)

I can't think of a better case for a class action lawsuit. They are extorting us out of features that we paid for. I bought this version of PS3 for several reasons, installing an alternative OS was high among them.

Re:EFF Help? (1)

HeronBlademaster (1079477) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653328)

They are extorting us out of features that we paid for.

How is it extortion? You bought it knowing you'd have to keep the PS3's own firmware updated to play PS3 games online; furthermore, the update isn't holding anything ransom in exchange for something you have, it's "merely" disabling functionality.

It's a jerk move, sure, and maybe even class-actionable, but it's not extortion.

Re:EFF Help? (1)

flerchin (179012) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653350)

It's holding my ability to play games online in exchange for my ability to boot into linux and make this reply.

I carefully considered the meaning of the word, and I'm pretty sure that it applies in the literal sense (although not perhaps in the popular vernacular).

Re:EFF Help? (1)

EvanED (569694) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653416)

I carefully considered the meaning of the word, and I'm pretty sure that it applies in the literal sense.

I'm pretty sure it doesn't. Wikipedia says "Extortion ... occurs when a person unlawfully obtains either money, property or services from a person(s), entity, or institution, through coercion." Merriam-Webster defines extort as "to obtain from a person by force, intimidation, or undue or illegal power."

I think it's a stretch to say that Sony is actually obtaining anything from you with this update. They are merely taking.

Still potentially actionable, especially if they advertised the other OS thing as a feature, but not extortion.

Re:EFF Help? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653420)

Well I want in on that class action lawsuit..

Linux on the PS3 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653252)

256 megs of ram was kind of a limiting factor in using Linux on the PS3, though it would be cool to use the full power of the cell processor to re-encode video.

april fools perhaps? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653254)

April 1st .. hrrrm

Anyone notice the date? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653300)

Just wondering...

Just a thought... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653342)

Um... April Fool's?

HPC Community (4, Interesting)

PAPPP (546666) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653392)

I wonder how the HPC community is going to respond; there is a not insubstantial community [umassd.edu] who heard "150Gflop/$400" and "Linux" and decided to build clusters from PS3s. Those machines can probably just have updates held back, but it makes replacement a problem. To forestall the inevitable "that isn't a serious use" argument, US Airforce owns Something like 2,500 [computerworld.com] PS3s for compute work.
Killing Linux on the PS3 also presents something of an issue for the other Cell "partners", who seem to be looking at the PS3 as a low-cost Cell development starter kit. The other Cell machines on the market are *much* more expensive (an IBM QS22 blade is $8-20k, depending on configuration, and Mercury Computer Systems doesn't even like talking about how much their Cell boards cost). Given that Cell is an enormously difficult architecture to target, having relatively inexpensive systems to test and train on is very desirable for the other vendors, especially now that so many of the HPC folks are fixated on GPGPU, which is also terrible to program for, but has a far lower cost of entry. It could be that IBM's decision not to pursue Cell in the HPC market [theinquirer.net] is how it became politically tenable for Sony to kill off Linux on the PS3.

Coincidence? Doubt it. (1)

billsayswow (1681722) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653412)

My friend was just telling me the other day that some bloke was almost done working on a way to unlock the entire PS3 hardware to Linux, rather than the reduced power it's forced to run at as is, which would allow, among many other things you can do with a powerful Linux computer, running the Dolphin Wii Emulator on the PS3, essentially giving the PS3 full Wii capabilities, too. Anyways, that was due to be ready soon... and now this? Interesting....

Re:Coincidence? Doubt it. (1)

billsayswow (1681722) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653452)

Oh, forgot to say, the unlock isn't the hardware mod that has already been out there.

who cares (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653456)

really. who gives a damn. With that 64MB of RAM any graphical linux was simply useless on the PS3

and... (0, Troll)

smash (1351) | more than 4 years ago | (#31653458)

I'm sure all 5 of the PS3 linux users are upset. I'll bet this has to do with some ps3 hacker guy (details escape me) recently getting out of the linux sandbox when booting linux, and gaining access to the rest of the hardware.

Bit of a bastard move by sony, but really - people don't really buy consoles specifically to run linux. Those that do are a tiny market which is likely more than offset by the additional piracy risk.

To sony management it would have been a no-brainer.

How could they? ... It's futile anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31653478)

I didn't just buy the PS3 to play games on it, I also bought it knowing that it would all but replace an aging PC I had been using. While it had limitations, (namely RAM and the RSX lockout), it still worked well enough to make my old PC totally obsolete. Any of you who have run Gentoo on yours and seen how fast it can handle non-graphics-related tasks like compiling know it's not a "slow" unit.
      Legally, how can they take away such a feature? Doesn't that make initial claims of it running Linux deceptive advertising? After all, nobody ever said it would have an expiration date.
      You know the worst part? Drastic measures intended to lock out pirates are just stopgap measures, sometimes barely even that. (look at the recent mention on slashdot of Ubisoft's DRM that lasted less than 24 hours!) In the end, the machine will eventually be broken anyway (probably by someone who joined the effort to crack it specifically because they wanted their other OS back), and the only people who will suffer will be respectful, paying customers.
      I suspect Sony would have been far better off to have given us just a little more graphics power to take away one of the major reasons why these hacks were authored in the first place.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?