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Gitbrew Releases OtherOS++ PS3 Linux Dual Boot

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the kicking-sony-while-they're-down dept.

PlayStation (Games) 240

An anonymous reader writes "Gitbrew has proudly released otherOS++ Linux Dual Boot v1.0b1, enabling PS3 users to install an alternative OS to their console with full access to all system hardware, including all 8 CELL cores (making the PS3 the world's most affordable supercomputer). For more information check out the installation instructions and source code."

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Benchmarks! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033346)

The PS3 suddenly became an interesting product again :-) Now lets give us some benchmarks of some scientific number crunching apps!

Re:Benchmarks! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033442)

I'm only interesed in benchmarks once they let me install Meatloaf's custom scheduler. The guy's music is pretty shit, but Meatloaf's code additions and changes to the scheduler make taking advantage of multi-core architecures a peice of cake, as well as being insanely efficient. Does anyone know if Meatloaf's scheduler is supported by this package?

Re:Benchmarks! (5, Interesting)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033478)

The PS3 suddenly became an interesting product again :-) Now lets give us some benchmarks of some scientific number crunching apps!

Not to me. Sony is at war with its customers; that's been evident since XCP. Hell, I felt dirty buying a broken Sony stereo for ten bucks, even though Sony didn't profit from my purchase.

How do you know the PS3s don't have hardware rootkits? I know of no other company that's deliberately installed malware on its products. I avoid Sony like the plague and can't understand why anyone would buy anything from them, or how it's has stayed in business, let alone how it can actually have fanbois.

Re:Benchmarks! (0)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033576)

You could say the PS3s have "hardware rootkits", but these have now been broken, otherwise otherOS++ would not be possible.

I think Sony make some good products. I think people like to blow the CD rootkit thing out of proportion in relation to the PS3 considering it was by a different branch of Sony. The guy who launched the PS3 was a great guy, even including other OS, etc. But, ever since he was replaced and they removed OtherOS, and especially with the PSN being hacked, I've lost a lot of respect for Sony. Having said that, I still enjoy my PS3.

If Sony do keep shitting all over us, I might actually just decide not to get a PS4 though. I really didn't expect that I'd ever choose a Microsoft product over any other, but if the only serious gaming choice is between Windows (and potentially OSX), PS and Xbox, I might end up going Xbox.

Re:Benchmarks! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033654)

> blow the CD rootkit thing out of proportion.

OMG we deserve to be raped. Erm... make that YOU.

Re:Benchmarks! (-1, Troll)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033684)

Another fine example of a well balanced mind at work. Thankyou for demonstrating what I was talking about.

Re:Benchmarks! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033980)

He was demonstrating what an idiot you are, Sony Fanboy.

Re:Benchmarks! (5, Informative)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033712)

Sounds right. Until you think again. There was a second rootkit with the microvault thumb drive and they were another division as well. (Why do people keep forgetting this one?) Then the subpoenas of people who visited a web site, or watched a video, which was still yet another division. Sony sees the customer as the enemy. I do not want to do business with my enemy.

Re:Benchmarks! (3, Insightful)

Killjoy_NL (719667) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034004)

Lik-Sang

Re:Benchmarks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36034234)

Sounds like Kim Jung Ill is a stock holder.

Re:Benchmarks! (1)

Moryath (553296) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033886)

Eh. For me - still running an early version PS3 - this doesn't do anything yet.

I'd love to install it, really I would. This + Linux XBMC would make the PS3 into an awesome media device. (And no, "just install a upnp server" is not an option - upnp servers are crap, require you to leave a box rather than just a network storage device running, and don't allow for anything approaching quick fast-forward/rewind or turning subtitles on/off or switching language tracks).

But, looks like this is yet another of those "just for the models we play around with" setups, rather than being coded to work properly across all models.

Re:Benchmarks! (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033964)

Yep, uPNP sucks. Even just playing back from media on the device sucks, the browser is awful. It's not so bad when using attached storage with your own folder structure, but still not great.

I've switched to mostly using Spotify for music now, though there is no PS3 client. There is a LoveFilm streaming client on PS3, which caused me to start a LoveFilm subscription, but I haven't even been able to access that with the recent PSN outage and switched to using my Xoom instead now that it's got full Flash 10.2. I think Sony should be providing more than just one month of free PSN plus after all the recent BS.

Re:Benchmarks! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033628)

People are getting more stupid by the day.

'Sony is at war with its customers' - Uhuh.

Hey, don't look, big brother is watching you, the MAN has got it in for you, and Sony makes you feel dirty.

Re:Benchmarks! (3, Insightful)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033724)

CD root kit. Microvault thumb drive root kit right after. Subpoenas on people who looked at a website or a video. I guess to you that is just courtship...

Re:Benchmarks! (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034130)

The PS3 suddenly became an interesting product again :-) Now lets give us some benchmarks of some scientific number crunching apps!

How does having access to the 8 CELL cores make the PS/3 a "supercomputer"?

Also, what do you think the possibility of running Fortran or some version of C++ and Fast Fourier Transforms on this thing would be? My wife's trying to do these shallow water solitary wave simulations and we've been using HP xw9300 workstations and it's taking frigging forever. I'm not joking. She's a mathematician and I'm a half a moron but I'm trying to help her out. So far, our best results (fastest) have been on my i7/1366 system, but I'm currently playing Portal 2 on that. Maybe I should buy an XBox and let her use my i7 machine.

Oh, math is hard.

world's most affordable supercomputer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033350)

hmm. how does an 8 core cell stack up against the current range of desktop processors? also how much power does it use? once you factor in electricity for a couple of years it might not be so cheap.

Re:world's most affordable supercomputer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033372)

hmm. how does an 8 core cell stack up against the current range of desktop processors? also how much power does it use? once you factor in electricity for a couple of years it might not be so cheap.

Because other supercomputers can run on free energy...

Re:world's most affordable supercomputer (1)

Phoshi (1857806) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033448)

Other supercomputers have years of design improvements, modern processors are much more efficient than they used to be.

Re:world's most affordable supercomputer (4, Interesting)

SuperDre (982372) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033662)

Well compared to the original OtherOS where you 'only' had 6 SPU's at your disposal, you can use the remaining 2 now for extra power.. a desktop proc is a generic processor which is good enough at a lot of stuff, but isn't great at specific calculations (like scientific calculations).. You have to factor in the current age of the CELL and price, you cannot get a current PC for ultrafast calculations for the same price as you can get a PS3.. If you purely want to run linux as an 'office' OS then you should stick with a regular PC, but if you want to use it as a 'supercomputer' for scientific stuff you should use the PS3..

Defamation (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033354)

George Hotz widely distributed information on how to install another operating system onto the PS3 to run illegal versions of PS3 games and software.

Libel much?

Re:Defamation (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033378)

It gets better:

These actions likely ultimately led to the retaliatory hacking attack that Sony is currently reeling from, which has caused the entire Playstation Network service to be disabled for nearly two weeks.

Wild speculation! Is TG a news source or an opinion piece?

Re:Defamation (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033394)

Wild speculation! Is TG a news source or an opinion piece?

I guess that depends on if 'TG' stands for 'Total Garbage' (which is my opinion of the TFA).

Re:Defamation (4, Funny)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033588)

“We discovered a file [newstechnica.com] making a clear reference to ‘Username unknown,’” the company said in a letter to the US Congress on Wednesday, “and a blank user icon which therefore was anonymous. D’you see what that means? It means George Hotz and his hacker friends are loathsome criminal masterminds! So obviously we can’t be held liable for negligence in the face of forces like these. In conclusion, give us money.”

Re:Defamation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033514)

"Overrated" of a new post, AKA, "I disagree, go away".

Re:Defamation (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033646)

That is not rated which is neither low nor high. And with strange aeons, maybe they'll fix the slashdot modding system.

-- H.P. Lovecraft

P.S. I wouldn't hold my fucking breath, though.

Re:Defamation (-1, Redundant)

Mad Leper (670146) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033932)

The only reason for Mr. Hotz to release the keys was for piracy, they have not and have never been necessary to enable CFW or homebrew.

So does libel mean telling an inconvenient truth now?

Re:Defamation (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033982)

they have not and have never been necessary to enable CFW or homebrew.

Unless you like having to hack your machine each firmware update.

Re:Defamation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36034036)

How wonder is must be for you to be able to read people minds and know their true intentions.

+1 (1)

malloc (30902) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034374)

+1

0wn3d (1)

Andy Smith (55346) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033360)

Wow Sony really are getting 0wn3d royale with cheese.

Supercomputer? Really? (3)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033362)

[...]including all 8 CELL cores (making the PS3 the world's most affordable supercomputer).

I'm not sure I'd call a PS3 a supercomputer. If you clustered a bunch of them it might qualify but even so there are plenty of rendering and computation clusters out there that could easily beat a cluster of several dozen PS3's without their owners thinking of them as "supercomputers".

Maybe I'm just old-fashioned but to me a supercomputer is something that cost millions of dollars to build and is capable of crunching numbers on a scale that a run-of-the-mill computer is incapable of (and yes, this of course assumes that the run-of-the-mill computer and the supercomputer are of the same era, to compare a Cray from the early '80s with a modern octo-core server with 64+ GiB of RAM wouldn't be fair).

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

Tx (96709) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033380)

I agree, 8 cores maketh not a supercomputer, otherwise an awful lot of us will have been working with supercomputers without even realising it. A low-cost supercomputer node, perhaps.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

stms (1132653) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033546)

On that note I bet that the air force will be happy about gaining access to all their hardware.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034012)

Why do you assume they lost access. The firmware updates only affected PS3 users who used OtherOS and PSN. I doubt any super computer clusters which had used the PS3 were affected by the change because they wouldn't be updating their firmware anyway.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

stms (1132653) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034242)

If they used the Same OtherOS provided by Sony for consumers then it was really badly nurfed (you only had access to one CPU!). However you may be right they might have already had a special OtherOS.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034376)

You didn't have access to one CPU. You had access to the CPU and 6 SPUs. The only major thing that was "nerfed" was the graphics driver which was adequate for 2D but not up for much beyond that. I doubt that restriction would have meant much to supercomputers either where it was unlikely any of the nodes were even plugged into a display.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

deroby (568773) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034246)

They might not have lost access, but the 'old times' OtherOS option in the PS3 still hid part of the hardware. I'm sure that if you google for it you'll find plenty of technical details. As far as I remember it, the OtherOS (linux) ran on a hypervisor that did shielded it from the GPU and at least one core.
The USAF apparently linked a LOT (1760?) of these PS3's together and use it as a super-computer. If they can unlock that extra core on each machine, they'll gain quite a bit of extra computer power !

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (3, Insightful)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033418)

Right now, the best bang per buck in parallel computing seems to be found in GPUs. For the price of a PS3 you can buy a few TFLOPS of processing power. For one thing, the PS3 was launched in 2006, so it is hard to compete against modern GPUs. However, the Cell is an interesting piece of hardware in other ways, at least for tinkerers who want something else than a beige x86 box.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (2)

hAckz0r (989977) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033502)

I agree with everything you said, but keep in mind that the two processors (Cell,GPU) are architecturally very different. They both lend themselves to very different models of computation, and thus solving different problem sets. Each will excel above the other if pointed at the right problem set for its given design.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033742)

Each will excel above the other if pointed at the right problem set for its given design.

x86 CPUs will Excel above Cell so long as microsoft won't port it

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033782)

Actually the PS3's CELL design is not that different from a CPU + GPU combo in a normal computer. The PS3 only has one equivalent of a general purpose CPU and then 7 "cores" equivalent to a GPU core in that they have to operate in parallel.

So really a PS3 is a rather weak computing platform.

Nowadays you can get quad-core general purpose CPU's that can outperform the PS3 all by themselves for less than half the price of a PS3, then combine a cheap GPU with 128+ cores for $50 and you absolutely destroy the PS3 in terms of computing power and price.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034018)

They might be different physically but you can write OpenCL apps which will run on a regular CPU, GPU or even a Cell.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

Kielistic (1273232) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034252)

That does not mean execution time will be the same.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034064)

You can buy a dual core graphics card which has around 5 Tflops but the PS3 does not come near that. PS3 is also 8 specialized cores in a more efficient package though. If AMD or Nvidia decided to make card purely for FLOPS it'd beat any other technology designed for computational power by a large margin.

Re:Supercomputer? Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36034262)

Umm Nvidia Tesla?

It goes to 8...? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033370)

Pretty sure the 8th SPU is hardware disabled to increase the yields. Might want to fix that summary there. Just sayin'...

Re:It goes to 8...? (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033430)

It is, but that doesn't mean it's unusable. On certain PS3's (particularly earlier ones) it wont work at all, but on newer ones, especially the slims, it is actually fully operational.

Re:It goes to 8...? (3, Funny)

ciderbrew (1860166) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033468)

fully operational.

Cut to Space battle
Cut to Luke
Cut to Light sabre on chair
Cut to Jar Jar Binks
Cut to wrists.

Re:It goes to 8...? (1)

Megane (129182) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034176)

That was the original intent. However, by the time the PS3 was released, yield was not a problem. So they kept it disabled (and forbade PS3 games from using it) to be consistent. (Also, one SPU was reserved for the hypervisor, leaving 6 for use by games and the original OtherOS.)

If you want a cheap laugh.... (5, Funny)

neokushan (932374) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033388)

Look at the comments on the same piece of news, but from a site that's predominantly made up of PS3 fans...

http://n4g.com/news/756574/hackers-bring-back-otheros-for-ps3/com [n4g.com]

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

Addict7 (2024042) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033440)

I wish I had modpoint for this link, just ROFL

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033460)

Dear lord...

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033476)

Good lord, it's like YouTube comments, only a hundredfold worse.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

Zero1za (325740) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034332)

Funny, I was thinking the same thing about here lately.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (2)

achenaar (934663) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033494)

Well hoooooo leeeeee shit that's a large pile of stupid.
Haven't seen a pile of stupid that big since... well I'm not sure I ever have.
Crikey.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

Bengie (1121981) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033876)

Even without OtherOS, PS3 is full of hackers; I don't see how it'll make any difference.

The biggest group of willful sheople on the internet.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033520)

And I think they are actually being quite accurate.

If GeoHot had not of done his shit the OtherOS would still be there. If Anonymous had not done their shit 100,000,000 people would not hate them enough to turn vigilante should they ever get the chance.

Right now 100,000,000 innocent people really loathe the legion neckbeards from 4chan.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033542)

If GeoHot had not of done his shit the OtherOS would still be there.

Hi troll, GeoHot didn't "do his shit" until after Sony removed OtherOS.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

Narishma (822073) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033618)

No, he did "do some shit" to access the hypervisor from OtherOS, that's what prompted Sony to remove it. But that was a big mistake as we saw, as it just encourage a lot more hackers to work on other ways to crack the PS3.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034084)

If GeoHot had not of done his shit the OtherOS would still be there.

Hi troll, GeoHot didn't "do his shit" until after Sony removed OtherOS.

Go and check your facts. Geohot produced a viable attack against the hypervisor which used OtherOS as the attack vector. Sony was hardly likely to sit idly by while the attack evolved into a download, burn & run iso which rooted a PS3 and used it to install custom firmware. So it is correct to say if he hadn't used OtherOS to attack the hypervisor that OtherOS would still exist today.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033566)

If Sony respected its consumers, OtherOS would still be there.

FTFY

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

uncanny (954868) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033698)

+1

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

jimicus (737525) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033570)

Could someone who is a gamer answer a few questions?

1. Is it currently possible to run games (hacked or otherwise) from Linux once your PS3 has booted Linux? Or do you have to reboot the console into the game directly?

2. How practical is it to hack a PS3 game in the first place and how many games are known to have been hacked with cheats such as aimbots? I was under the impression that when running games on the PS3, more-or-less everything had to be signed.

What I'm trying to figure out is from the other side of the fence - do the complaints from the people in the pro-Sony camp make any sense at all? Or are they just lapping up rubbish being spouted by Sony's PR people?

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (2)

neokushan (932374) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033600)

I'll field this -

1) It's NOT POSSIBLE (and never has been) to run PS3 games from Linux on the PS3. All the games are encrypted and such so that they can only be run from GameOS. This new Linux method has more access than ever, but I believe it's still impossible to play games outside of OtherOS.

2) There has been game hacks and cheat devices released, but they're not that prevalent any more. You're correct that everything needs to be signed, but as we have the private keys from frimware OS 3.41 and earlier, this isn't a problem. The problem now is that PSN has been locked out for Custom firmware users. Upgrading is necessary to get on PSN and upgrading disables all homebrew, so it's not really an issue for most. Nobody has released tools or a method to build a custom firmware based on future firmware versions. I'm sure it's possible, but not likely any time soon.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034170)

1) The danger that Linux posed was it was an attack vector. If Sony had left OtherOS there after it was compromised it would have developed into an easy to deploy crack that people could simply download and run. The only time they'd be using Linux would be to crack the hypervisor before installing custom firmware. After the reboot they'd be running a modded GameOS and could discard the OtherOS partition completely.

2) Well once you have modded firmware you can mod / patch any game you like. Write code that highlights / sights on enemies, turns the walls transparent, modifies network traffic so bullets always register headshots etc. Aside from cheating you could also grief, e.g. sending corrupted data to the server to take it down, glitch it or whatever. Basically, allowing people onto PSN with modded hardware would open the door to cheats and griefers.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033632)

OtherOS was removed _before_ GeoHot started hacking around the limitations. Sony was losing money in the beginning on every PS3 sold so they sought to lessen the losses and cut back on the OtherOS function so that they wouldn't need to spend money on that. Also, the OtherOS class action suit revealed that e.g. IBM pressured Sony to do this, too, because IBM was trying to sell Cell as the server CPU but Sony was selling it way cheaper than IBM did.

Besides, blaming Anonymous for the PSN outage is pointless. They're out to disrupt services and annoy companies they don't like, but they're not out there to steal random people's data. Besides, only a single text file claiming to be from Anonymous was left on the server whereas their style is much more direct; they like to deface the company completely by replacing their websites. Of course, this is all anecdotal and no "real" evidence exists either way, but I feel the hack was done by someone more skilled and are just trying to send FBI and Sony in the wrong direction by leaving a "note" from Anon.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (2)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033648)

Some of what they said what accurate, but only mixed with half truths and closed minded thinking. Not all PS3 hackers want access to the RSX to "pirate games". I'd love to be able to use my PS3 as a PS2 emulator for example, with otherOS++ I suspect this may be possible now. I have PS2 discs that I bought legally. However I can't be assed installing non-authorised ROMs because I actually like having access to PSN (not that I've had any for the last couple of weeks anyway.

If you think the hack was by Anonymous, you're an idiot. Do you also think that all spam and viruses are created by Anonymous? There are plenty of hackers out there who are just in it for the money, Anonymous are not. For one thing, who would you even know to give the money to if everyone is anonymous?

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

cyclomedia (882859) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033832)

Yep, I'd just like to be able to run XBMC on it

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (2)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033762)

If GeoHot had not of done his shit the OtherOS would still be there.

Yes. No one else would ever have done it. GeoHot has the magic programming fingers! please...

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (1)

Pvt_Ryan (1102363) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033794)

Classiscs

*leave us real gamers alone*
Console Gamer != Real Gamer

*Use a PC for linux and not the PS3*
Why must I spend £300 for a console for games and £300 for a PC to use? can I not just spend £300 and have both?

In response to someone saying "if hacker's only want homebrew then there is nothing wrong with that" this was posted:
*And can you really trust them with those responsibilities?*
Sadly noone responded to that with "you trusted sony with your credit card details"

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033840)

ROFL what a bunch of retards

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (2)

Mad Leper (670146) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033956)

Funny because these are actually customers of Sony, you know, the ones that have been royally screwed by the thieves and hackers?

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (2)

sa1lnr (669048) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033974)

Cheap laugh? I found the level of ignorance rather depressing.

Re:If you want a cheap laugh.... (2)

neokushan (932374) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034100)

It certainly makes slashdot look a damn sight more insightful though.

What, does it come with a cape & secret identi (3, Funny)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033406)

Seriously, "the world's most affordable supercomputer" what drivel is this?

Last time I checked, having 8 multi-purpose cores did not a super computer make.

I'll grant that the PS3 is an affordable supercomputer component, but it's no more "super" than my rack of 8 core servers -- In fact, in terms of flops it's no where close to my server rack's combined processing power...

Considering that the PS3 is only a possible component in a super computer, and the fact that there are many cheaper components with which to build a super (cluster) computer I call bullshit on both "world's most affordable" and " supercomputer" claims -- That is, unless the PS3 now comes with dual identities, one of which is a crime fighting vigilante by night...

Re:What, does it come with a cape & secret ide (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033466)

Last time I checked, having 8 multi-purpose cores did not a super computer make.

Last time I checked, structuring your sentence in an old-timey way does not a better point make.

Re:What, does it come with a cape & secret ide (3, Funny)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033512)

Last time I checked, having 8 multi-purpose cores did not a super computer make.

Last time I checked, structuring your sentence in an old-timey way does not a better point make.

Damn, nice burn man, my point is totally irrelevant now thanks to your pointing out of the sentence structure which could be improved. I suppose using not one but two ellipses completely obliterated any worth my statements might have held...

Re:What, does it come with a cape & secret ide (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033904)

my laptops graphics card is a super computer, according to slashdot editors..

also, you have to hack your ps3 to achieve this.

what's worst, a finnish publication published these news as "ps3 again supports linux", which made it seem like sony backed off from otherOs limitation.

Custom kernel isntallation? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033412)

But can this software install Meatloaf's custom Linux kernel? I heard the changes he made to scheduling mean that it is a lot easier to take advantage of multi-core architectures. Bash Meatloaf's music all you want, but he's a wicked coder, and his contributions to Linux are impressive.

Oh stop with the supercomputer bullshit (4, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033496)

Seriously, calling devices "supercomputers" reeks of either fanboyism or extreme ignorance. If a desktop device can do a given amount of calculations, that amount of calculations don't make something a supercomputer anymore.

Please remember that the first supercomputer, the Cray-1, did 250 MFLOPS. So if that is what it takes to be a supercomputer then my cellphone qualifies. Of course it doesn't anymore, these days you need to talk multiple TFLOPS (or more).

A PS3 is not a supercomputer. In fact these days, it isn't all that impressive. The best they claim is 25.6 GFLOPS per cell in theoretical performance, so 205 GFLOPS is the best you theoretically get, if there are no bandwidth constraints (which there are on a PS3) for single precision math. Ok well testing my actual Radeon 5870, I get 800 GFLOPS for single precision, 227 for double precision. That is an actual benchmark of the card running on my desktop. It also can handle a much larger problem set, having much more RAM (1GB on the card).

Heck even my i7 benches at 80 GFLOPS on a real test, without using AVX, and of course is far more flexible than the SPUs since all cores are full featured.

Not saying there is anything wrong with the Cell and indeed there may be some cases where it is the best choice. It is something of a hybrid between a pure stream processor like a GPU and a very general CPU like an i7. However trying to claim it makes the PS3 a "supercomputer" is stupid. Even if it were the most powerful chip out there, the PS3 still would be a supercomputer by virtue of the fact that if one made a large computer with a lot of Cells, it would be much faster (this has been done).

However that aside, it really isn't all that fast. Modern GPUs out do it at stream processing many times over. My 5870, which is not the latest tech and just a consumer card, was about 4 times as fast in reality as a Cell is in theory, and that is running on a desktop system doing other things (I didn't boot to a special graphics benchmark or anything).

Re:Oh stop with the supercomputer bullshit (2)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033596)

Seriously, calling devices "supercomputers" reeks of either fanboyism or extreme ignorance.

I'm reminded of when Apple called Altivec capable CPUs "supercomputers." My brain wants to eat itself so it can forget such silliness.

(if Apple does this again I'm still going to be an apple fanboi, but i will face palm on the way into the Apple store.)

Re:Oh stop with the supercomputer bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033634)

I remember purchasing a graphics card that was about 1 1/2 time the processing power of a PS3 - and this costs less (unless you consider second hand machines).

I got a PS3 and have enjoyed gaming online and offline. But it wasn't what it was hyped up to be, and just runs the same games as you get on an Xbox or PC (with the exception of a few titles). I mean games could have been 5 times larger on BluRay, so tonnes more data and gameplay, but that would have been too much effort and reduced profitability.

The beauty seems to be the ability to connect many together and have them all parrallel processing - hence the folding home app...

http://folding.stanford.edu/English/FAQ-PS3#ntoc6

"The PS3 right now runs what are called implicit solvation calculations, including some simple ones (sigmodal dependent dielectric) and some more sophisticated ones (AGBNP, a type of Generalized Born method from Prof. Ron Levy's group at Rutgers). In this respect, the PS3 client is much like our GPU client. However, the PS3 client is more flexible, in that it can also run explicit solvent calculations as well, although not at the same speed increase relative to PC's. We are working to increase the speed of explicit solvent on the PS3 and would then run these calculations on the PS3 as well. In a nutshell, the PS3 takes the middle ground between GPU's (extreme speed, but at limited types of WU's) and CPU's (less speed, but more flexibility in types of WU's). "

As and Xbox is similar to a PC in architecture, it is replaced by a PC. The PS3 has 'special' features, and I may be wrong but these 'special features' don't seem to get used in gaming.

Re:Oh stop with the supercomputer bullshit (2)

Crookdotter (1297179) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033748)

When the PS3 was announced, wasn't it said that if it had been made 5 years earlier, it would have gone into the top 100 supercomputer list? I think that's what the summary is talking about - more a nickname from the past than an actual assessment of the performance now against todays supercomputers.

Re:Oh stop with the supercomputer bullshit (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033914)

you have to be a pretty complete fanboy to dedicate time to porting stuff to it.

does it kickstart .iso's? that's what everyone wants to know.

also is there povray support for those cores?

Re:Oh stop with the supercomputer bullshit (1)

CarsonChittom (2025388) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033994)

A very well-written and insightful comment. One minor nitpick: the first supercomputer was actually the IBM 7030 Stretch [wikipedia.org] . The first supercomputer that people actually used was the CDC 6600 [wikipedia.org] —which, yes, was designed by Seymour Cray, but before he'd gone off on his own.

hymenical council; the pup's out of the tent (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033538)

it's another unspeakable divinical 'secret', whose bloody roots have been commoditically attached by the F man'kind'stein neogod black hole holycost fearmonics program?

Prepare to Protest (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033594)

If SONY makes a stink about this, I say a massive protest is in order.

Obligatery (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033626)

Does it run linux?

GeoHot Settlement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033636)

I bet GeoHot reached his settlement before all this happened.

Servers Sony right. When you DRM, You DESERVE TO DIE.

How does the PS3 compare to a modern PC? (1)

shish (588640) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033642)

Why would I spend $300 on hardware that Sony is constantly butchering, when I could spend it on a PC CPU (or now that OpenCL is getting stable, GPU)?

Re:How does the PS3 compare to a modern PC? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033738)

CellBE does OpenCL. It rolls ~220gflops in personal tests.

I love programming my CellBE PS3, but I always worry that once it breaks I can't replace the hardware, rendering my software useless.

Re:How does the PS3 compare to a modern PC? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033916)

CPU is 3ghz which is fine. RAM is a bit strange.. really only 256(?) meg of ram useable, with some more trickiness to use another bank of RAM as swap.

I'm writing this from FIREFOX on my ps3, BTW, so it's useable :)

Something to do... (5, Funny)

fostware (551290) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033656)

Look at it this way... at least you can use your PS3 while waiting for your PSN account to be reactivated ^_^

Super extra fun time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36033668)

Yay, now we can get back to everyone on slashdot saying that Linux on the PS3 is pointless.

Will Sony come for /. (1)

bfree (113420) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033764)

So how long until Sony decide to request the logs and account details for everyone on /. who saw this story? Then how much longer until they leak all that data?

Can't wait... (1)

michelcolman (1208008) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033940)

I can't wait for Sony to sue Gitbrew, and then a few days later all Sony assembly lines suddenly spinning up and down uncontrollably to the tune of "this is a triumph" or whatever other tune the hackers fancy...

Re:Can't wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36034222)

Maybe the central computers of their factories will decide to conduct a massive scale version of Schrödinger's cat experiment...

Summary missed the most important part of story (5, Interesting)

moniker (9961) | more than 3 years ago | (#36033968)

Apparently, Geoff Levand was one of the people behind this release [1]. Geoff Levand is the programmer who worked for Sony supporting OtherOS and made the ill-fated and oft-quoted promise that Sony would never ever remove OtherOS from fat PS3s. [2] Looks like Geoff just kicked his former employer in the nuts. Go Geoff!

[1] http://psgroove.com/content.php?1029-PS3-Dual-Boot-GameOS-Linux-CFW-Released [psgroove.com]
[2] http://lists.ozlabs.org/pipermail/cbe-oss-dev/2010-February/007202.html [ozlabs.org]

Re:Summary missed the most important part of story (2)

moniker (9961) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034068)

Or quite likely... this is someone screwing with Sony and using the handle Geoff Levand.

"Supercompute" away... I want XBMC (1)

anti-pop-frustration (814358) | more than 3 years ago | (#36034058)

I just what to know how well XBMC for linux runs on this thing now that full access to the hardware is possible (I don't own a PS3... yet).

The XBMC team has stated numerous times that they aren't interested in supporting XBMC on a hacked platform anymore, but this is different since we might be able to run the vanilla linux version on it (and if any optimization is required for it to run smoothly, maybe it can be done at the OS level - outside of XMBC).
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