Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Sony Games Linux

Game Over For Sony and Open Source? 364

Posted by Soulskill
from the forsaken-beards dept.
Glyn Moody writes "Sony has never been much of a friend to hackers, and its infamous rootkit showed what it thought of users. But by omitting the option to install GNU/Linux on its new PS3, it has removed the final reason for the open source world to care about Sony. Unless, of course, you find Google's new distribution alliance with Sony to pre-install Chrome on its PCs exciting in some way."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Game Over For Sony and Open Source?

Comments Filter:
  • Who Cares (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MightyMartian (840721) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:33PM (#29288111) Journal

    Buy a damned computer, or one of the mobiles you can install Linux on.

    • Re:Who Cares (Score:5, Insightful)

      by PrescriptionWarning (932687) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:35PM (#29288149)
      without the use of most of the computing power when you actually put linux on it, it seemed gimped to begin with. In other words they weren't exactly being open source friendly from the start any way.
      • Re:Who Cares (Score:5, Insightful)

        by sopssa (1498795) * <sopssa@email.com> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:40PM (#29288247) Journal

        From the article

        Sony explained their decision on the Playstation 2 developer forum, in a post that has since been removed:

        "The reasons are simple: The PS3 Slim is a major cost reduction involving many changes to hardware components in the PS3 design. In order to offer the OtherOS install, SCE would need to continue to maintain the OtherOS hypervisor drivers for any significant hardware changes--this costs SCE. One of our key objectives with the new model is to pass on cost savings to the consumer with a lower retail price. Unfortunately in this case the cost of OtherOS install did not fit with the wider objective to offer a lower cost PS3."

        And this is understable, seeing how much PS3 price has come down from its launch.

        Old PS3 owners still have the option, it just affects the 'slim' model.

        • by tepples (727027)

          Old PS3 owners still have the option, it just affects the 'slim' model.

          For how many more months will the Old PS3 remain available with a hardware warranty? I have a feeling Sony will discontinue the Old PS3 by the fall shopping season, just as it quickly discontinued the original PS2 in favor of the slim PS2.

          • Re:Who Cares (Score:5, Insightful)

            by sunderland56 (621843) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:38PM (#29289139)

            For how many more months will the Old PS3 remain available with a hardware warranty?

            If you're interested in running Linux on a PS3, you probably already own one. If you don't, Sony has given you fair warning to get a "chubby" PS3 while they are still available.

            Besides, I don't think this is going to stop anyone from running Linux on the slim PS3. It's not like the iPhone comes with a "install other OS" option in the boot code.

            • Re:Who Cares (Score:5, Interesting)

              by Khyber (864651) <techkitsune@gmail.com> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @02:08PM (#29289639) Homepage Journal

              The Slim PS3 might be more hackable without the hypervisor being around. Odds are greater that one could better unlock the power of the PS3 since there's no hypervisor restricting access to the hardware directly.

              • Re:Who Cares (Score:5, Interesting)

                by RiotingPacifist (1228016) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @03:05PM (#29290477)

                The guy that owned the xbox and compromised the xbox360 security, claimed the only reason that the ps3 was safe from pirates was because they let you run all your otherOS/homebrew stuff, it will be interesting to see if this happens or if
                1) homebrew are happy using the older consoles
                2) homebrew try but fail to cack it
                3) pirates crack the new (weaker) ps3 without homebrew's help

                • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                  by Moryath (553296)

                  3) pirates crack the new (weaker) ps3 without homebrew's help

                  Why not 4) homebrew and pirates work together semi-implicitly to crack the new (weaker) PS3 as happened with the Wii?

                  The Wii's "pirate" and "homebrew" crowds are not that different. Yes, there are the standouts (like marcan, whose definition of "piracy" often puts him at odds even with other people normally considered homebrewers, such as people who enjoy rewriting/redrawing banners for the hell of it and eventually led to the modern "bannerbomb"

                  • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                    I don't know much beyond what ive read of the xbox scene, but homebrewers are the kind of people that are going to put timer chips on motherboards, patch kernels, code simple games, exploit and generally do clever things, pirates just trick a console into thinking that it is playing a legit game. (again AFAIK) The xbox360 has pretty bulletproof, however 1 hole was found (by homebrew, to run linux on it) as a result the encryption keys for the cd drives where swiped and now pirates have produced modchips for

          • by radish (98371)

            It's already discontinued - available "while supplies last".

        • by Yokaze (70883)

          Do you think? They reduced production costs from $400 to $250. How much did scrapping the OtherOS hypervisor support contributed to these costs savings?

          Taking the goal of Kaz Hirai of selling roughly 16 million units (1.5e8 in 9 years), increasing the costs by 10 cents per unit will give you a yearly budget of 1.6 Mega-bucks. So, I'd wager the guess, it was well less then 5 cents per unit.

          The point was simply making more profit, which is understandable.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by vadim_t (324782)

      A console is a computer, just with annoying restrictions tacked on.

      But generally good advice, that's why I don't buy consoles in general, and avoid Sony like the plague.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by msimm (580077)
        Funny isn't it, if a console is just a small computer wrapped in a larger DRM layer.
        • Re:Who Cares (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Toonol (1057698) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:56PM (#29289421)
          But it's DRM that has been completely inoffensive and pain-free. That's the difference. I don't have a problem with copy protection. I wouldn't mind nailed down DRM on my pc, if it simply stopped games from being copied. The problem with DRM on the pc is that it goes further than that... it tracks you, it breaks things, it modifies your setup, it takes away legitimate functionality, it hinders free development... It ends up being the Sony rootkit, which should have put some Sony execs in jail.

          If DRM meant that I always had to put the Starcraft 2 dvd in my computer when I wanted to play it, and NO OTHER RESTRICTION, I might actually buy the game. Instead, DRM seems to mean 'contact Blizzard every game for permission to play. Here's my IP, battlenet ID, etc., etc...'.

          Sigh. I'm sure console games will eventually go that route, though.
          • by Chees0rz (1194661)
            Exactly. The console experience (especially now-a-days) is beautiful... I really have no complaints about the user experience. I especially love those blue tooth controllers. Everything is standardized and you know it will just work.

            Maybe PCs are catching up, and I just don't know it? But I don't feel compelled to have a PC hooked up to my TV just to play games... especially when the only input device I have is a keyboard/mouse...

            (are game controllers standardized, and usable for every game? Not
            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by nxtw (866177)

              Some Windows games have special support for Xbox 360 controllers, I believe mainly those that are also released for the Xbox 360. The controls automatically map and force feedback works in the same way as it does on the Xbox - you just have to load the game. Of course, you need a special adapter to use an Xbox 360 wireless controller on a PC, as these do not use Bluetooth.

              I've seen Fallout 3 on a PC and on the Xbox 360. The PC was a unremarkable Core 2 Duo system with a Radeon HD 4670 (which cost $90 bac

          • Re:Who Cares (Score:4, Interesting)

            by nog_lorp (896553) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @02:38PM (#29290061)

            So, you've never had a scratched disk and been forced to shell out another $60 bucks to get a game you already own?

            I also find it offensive and painful when I can't run my own code on my computer.

            • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

              by nog_lorp (896553)

              PS: development machines and SDKs costing thousands of dollars tends to hinder free development.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by CronoCloud (590650)

              Never had a scratched disc, perhaps the people complaining that they need "backups" in case they scratch the discs need to take care of their valuable things better.

      • Re:Who Cares (Score:4, Insightful)

        by nomadic (141991) <nomadicworld@NOSpam.gmail.com> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:35PM (#29289093) Homepage
        A console is a computer, just with annoying restrictions tacked on.

        But much cheaper, and with far less software glitches.
        • by thtrgremlin (1158085) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @02:30PM (#29289955) Homepage Journal
          You aren't very familiar with Sony, are you?
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by guruevi (827432)

          Never owned an X-Box I see. I don't own an X-Box either but against my advice my brother-in-law did and he has had nothing but trouble with it. He had it in and out of service for 5 months, this is his fourth X-Box in less than 2 years (warranty) and now it's eating his disks. The disks are not under warranty. Too bad he can't make a backup copy of them.

      • Re:Who Cares (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Quarters (18322) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @04:27PM (#29291693)
        My rerfigerator is a a computer. My thermostat is a computer. My car's engine has a computer. My remote control is a computer. I don't get persnickety about not being able to Linux on those devices. Why should I, or anyone else, get upset that I can't put Linux on a console? The other poster is right. If you want to install Linux and use it buy a device that lets you easily install and run arbitrary code. You'll never achieve the mythical "year Linux takes over the desktop" if you keep wasting time trying to put it on everything *BUT* desktop computers.
    • by mweather (1089505)
      My PS3 IS a computer.
      • It's a shitty computer for anything other than games, though.
    • Re:Who Cares (Score:4, Informative)

      by zindorsky (710179) <zindorsky@gmail.com> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:37PM (#29288205)

      Buy a damned computer, or one of the mobiles you can install Linux on.

      Maybe you should RTFA before posting ...

      Of course there are a million machines you can install Linux on, but the PS3 was particularly nice because of its Cell architecture. That allowed for some super-computer like performance for a low, low price. Lots of research institutions used PS3 clusters for low cost supercomputing. Now that future is jeopardized.

      • by tepples (727027)

        Of course there are a million machines you can install Linux on

        But how many these "million machines" are designed to connect to a standard-definition television? I looked at Best Buy a couple weeks ago and saw a bunch of PCs with VGA and possibly DVI or HDMI outputs but no S-Video. Or by "million machines", are you referring to any original PS3 units that might show up on the second-hand market?

      • linux on PS3 runs on a hyper-visor that hides most of the architecture, this means no access to the vetorial units, GPU and the powerPC CPU embeded on the cell chip is limited to some 600 MHz.

        you can bet that those researchers using PS3s also bought a development kit from sony that allows them to develop natively to the PS3 proprietary OS, giving them full acess to all the resources.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by CronoCloud (590650)

          Yes, LInux on the PS3 runs under a hypervisor, but your information is quite incorrect. You have full access to the dual threaded PPC core (with Altivec) and it runs at the full 3.2 GHz speed. You also have full access to 6 SPE's. What you don't have is full access to the RSX, only framebuffer, but that's okay if you only want to do serious number crunching as a researcher. They use off the shelf PS3 hardware.

      • Of course there are a million machines you can install Linux on, but the PS3 was particularly nice because of its Cell architecture. That allowed for some super-computer like performance for a low, low price. Lots of research institutions used PS3 clusters for low cost supercomputing. Now that future is jeopardized.

        Lots? More like "barely any." The only entity that has done anything significant is IBM with their Roadrunner supercomputer [wikipedia.org]. A network of several PS3s is not a supercomputer.

      • Re:Who Cares (Score:5, Interesting)

        by jpmorgan (517966) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @02:17PM (#29289783) Homepage
        Nobody uses the PS3 for supercomputing these days. The ugly secret of the PS3 is that its 'extreme performance' was mostly marketing. While it was fairly fast at release, it is ridiculously complex to code for. You're talking about a machine with 9 distinct memory spaces, 4 instruction sets and 3 compilers. And while Sony may market it as having '2 teraflops' of performance, it only has about 450gflops of total programmable computation power. The vaunted Cell processor only clocks in at around 250GFlops, which you get pretty easily with Core i7 (Nehalem)... and it's a LOT easier to get peak performance out of the Core i7. Let me repeat that for emphasis it is mindbogglingly simpler to get peak performance out of the Core i7. And if you're willing to spend more a little time and money to code to a specialized platform, GPU computing with CUDA (and OpenCL once it matures) spanks the Cell. You can buy multi-GPU machines from NVidia that are pushing 4 teraflops programmable.

        Ultimately though, the biggest killer of the PS3 in supercomputing is all that power is single precision, and single precision only. You can get away with single precision SOMETIMES in scientific computing, but more often than not it's a deal breaker. Even when you can use single precision, it's often in a mixed precision context. The PS3 has no double precision support, and that kills it.

        The PS3 is awesome on paper, but in reality it's just awful.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by jpmorgan (517966)
          Oh, and I should add that in Linux you have no access to the GPU. So you only have the Cell's 250GFlops of programmable performance, unless you're a game developer.
        • Nobody uses the PS3 for supercomputing these days. The ugly secret of the PS3 is that its 'extreme performance' was mostly marketing.

          Folding@Home maintains a popular PS3 client that is currently used by 31,933 PS3s. [stanford.edu] The PS3s provide about 26% of the total x86 equivalent TFLOPS available to F@H, although PS3s represent just 9% of the total F@H CPU population.

          Let me emphasize that: thirty one thousand, nine hundred thirty three PS3s actively contribute to Folding@Home. That's a long way from zero, my friend.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by tepples (727027)

      Buy a damned computer, or one of the mobiles you can install Linux on.

      Three things:

      • That's another box to buy and connect to the TV. I thought people chose the PLAYSTATION 3 to get away from having to buy an extra box for everything.
      • If you have an SDTV, you have to buy yet another box to convert the VGA signals from the PC to the composite or S-Video signals that the console understands.
      • Apart from EA Sports, there appears to be a stigma among major PC game developers against releasing multiplayer games designed to run on a single PC connected to a TV.
      • Three things:

        • That's another box to buy and connect to the TV. I thought people chose the PLAYSTATION 3 to get away from having to buy an extra box for everything.

        Yes, that's why there's PS2 compatibility. Oh wait, there isn't so now I have to connect my PS2 to play PS2 games. Besides, how many people use their PS3 as the main computer anyway? I'd rather get a Dell computer that comes with more than 256 MB of RAM for my $400 thank you very much.

        If you have an SDTV, you have to buy yet another box to convert the VGA signals from the PC to the composite or S-Video signals that the console understands.

        And if you have your PS3 connected to an SDTV, you're wasting the entire purpose of the PS3: playing Blu-Ray and playing games in high definition.

        • by tepples (727027)

          And if you have your PS3 connected to an SDTV, you're wasting the entire purpose of the PS3: playing Blu-Ray and playing games in high definition.

          What about playing PS3 games that happen not to have been ported to PS2? Or would you claim that any other game in the same genre is a close enough substitute?

    • by LoRdTAW (99712)

      You should care if you want to develop for the cell processor or want to build a cheap and powerful cluster. Currently there is no other stand alone Cell powered computer available besides the PS3. IBM only offers two different Cell processor blade servers which would cost well over ten thousand dollars. The PS3 is the only "personal computer" that is cell powered. Even if some company came along and started to offer a Cell powered PC the price will be many times that of the PS3.

      So for anyone who is interes

    • by seebs (15766)

      Maybe someone who wants to mess with Cell?

      I actually did make a couple of tries at getting a non-PS3 Cell. Mercury didn't even bother to respond in any way at all to my emails (although they did start spamming me two years later).

      For $400 or so, you could get a slightly weakened Cell. Or for... Who knows? I couldn't even get the other vendors to return queries. Which of these is more appealing to a hobbyist?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:35PM (#29288145)

    It didn't sell them any significant number of new PS3's. That they did it for the first generation was fine, but it's not a contract they signed in blood.

  • Cost/Benefit (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TJ_Phazerhacki (520002) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:37PM (#29288191) Journal
    RTFA. Sony has chosen not to maintain the Hypervisor for the new hardware. You can still run linux on the old systems, and they do not plan to disable that feature. This isn't open source hate, it's a practical business decision by a company that loses money every time they sell a console. They made the console cheaper.
    • Re:Cost/Benefit (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Aladrin (926209) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:52PM (#29288441)

      And stopped people from buying it that weren't going to buy games and accessories with it.

      Yes, some gamers also installed Linux, but there were -many- people who bought it just to install Linux, for various reasons. Each of those sales was an absolute loss for Sony and it doesn't make sense to encourage it.

      I don't blame them one bit. Besides, I installed linux and it wasn't a very good experience on the PS3, between horrible installs and slowness and general awkwardness like having to choose what to load on reboot/etc. I ended up just putting a PC in the room instead.

      • Besides, I installed linux and it wasn't a very good experience on the PS3, between horrible installs and slowness and general awkwardness like having to choose what to load on reboot/etc. I ended up just putting a PC in the room instead.

        Exactly. I don't understand this whole "lets stuff Ubuntu on a computer designed for gaming" nonsense. I mean, it has 256 MB RAM, no graphics card for Linux to take advantage of...what's the point?

      • I don't think they care.

        Every unit sony sold, sony lost money on.

        Every unit sold that wasn't purchased with the intent to play games on, sony lost projected income on.

        Either way you look at it, sony will be glad to have rid themselves of those kinds of people.

      • It fights piracy (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Late Adopter (1492849)
        The hypervisor gave homebrew developers a way to make apps without enabling warez. But now the homebrew community and the warez community are brought back together by the need to find a hack to access the console resources. And once one finds a way in, the other gets it for free, no stopping them.

        Linux support seemed like an intelligent way to take a stab at piracy on the cheap, while paying lip-service to Open Source, etc, and getting a tiny amount of street-cred for it. It may be that's not worth th
      • by H0p313ss (811249)

        And stopped people from buying it that weren't going to buy games and accessories with it.

        Both of you.

      • Re:Cost/Benefit (Score:5, Insightful)

        by VGPowerlord (621254) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @02:31PM (#29289979)

        I hate to say it, but Sony probably lost more PS3 sales by removing the PS2 compatibility than they did removing the ability to run Linux.

        • Re:Cost/Benefit (Score:4, Insightful)

          by CronoCloud (590650) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `noruaduolconorc'> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @03:19PM (#29290679)

          I agree, anyone who wanted to run Linux on a PS3 probably already has one. The slim model is not aimed at Sony's hardcore fanbase (who probably wanted backwards compatibility and already have a PS3) or open source geeks, but those who don't have one already.

          Sony said something similar when they released the slim PS2 without the hard drive bay: "Look, most likely anyone who wanted to play the few hard drive enabled games already has a fat PS2 because they're hardcore fans"

    • by yincrash (854885)
      Comparing the cost of driver updates on a per console basis doesn't make much sense. There is a one time cost to create the drivers plus maybe the salary of one programmer to maintain the drivers. Per console, that's miniscule.
  • Why on /earth/ would Sony care about Linux on PS3's?

    And honestly, for the great majority of users, why on earth would you bother putting Linux on a PS3 (aside from 'because I can' and scientific stuff, for which there are better solutions and more interesting challenges), except to pirate games?

    I'm having a really hard time finding out why I'm supposed to be as outraged as the tone of this suggests I should be.

    • As mentioned in other comments, PS3's architecture was great. It offered really strong computing at a really low cost. Lots of people used multiple PS3's running Linux to do a wide variety of tasks, from server farms to rendering to whatever.

      Now, You are right, for a great majority of the users, they DON'T put linux on their PS3. So when they decided to lower the price, they had to drop a feature. Guess which one got dropped? Right, support for other OS's.

  • by neonprimetime (528653) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:38PM (#29288217) Homepage
    ... PS3 Slim won't run PS2 discs [fudzilla.com]
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by hattig (47930)

      Yeah, well that wasn't a capability of many big PS3s either, the 40GB in Europe never had that capability. Sad, yes, but once the PS3 game library was big enough an understandable cost optimisation.

      Maybe Sony will one day sort out its PS2 software emulation (not the half and half that they had in 2nd generation PS3s in some markets) so that we can load our existing games (although I suspect they would rather we rebought them in the PS Store).

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      ... PS3 Slim won't run PS2 discs [fudzilla.com]

      I think this is a more practical thing to be concerned about, at least for some of us. I thought about buying a PS3, even though it's unlikely I'd buy many games at first, because looking forward it seemed to make sense. But heck, my daughter still plays a number of PS2 games on a regular basis - so nope, we're not getting a PS3 for a while.

      I don't understand why console makers can't grasp that we don't want to keep connecting more and more devices concurrently to our televisions, or having said devices ta

    • the "fat" PS3 doesn't already.

      the last model to have PS2 compatibility was the 80GB model, and this one did this with a combination of hardware AND software, while the previous 60 GB had full hardware compatibility.

      the 40GB model can't play PS2 disks nor does any other model after the 80 GB one.

  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:39PM (#29288231) Journal

    ... it has removed the final reason for the open source world to care about Sony.

    I thought ImageWorks (of Sony Pictures) had recently opensourced OSL, Scala Migrations, Field3D, PyString and Maya Reticle [imageworks.com] or at least made them community endeavors. I can't seem to find the source code for browsing on OSL and some of the other projects are pretty tiny but if that's true it's a good sign on ImageWorks' part.

    I'm certain they by and large use GPL LGPL in their products like their TVs [sony.com] and SOE using PostgreSQL over Oracle [computerworld.com].

    Writing off the PS3? Probably. They probably realized Linux support buys them little over the Wii and XBox360 despite what I and everyone else thinks. But the rest of Sony might have hope.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by tepples (727027)

      They probably realized Linux support buys them little over the Wii and XBox360 despite what I and everyone else thinks.

      Xbox 360 has Creators Club and Xbox Live Indie Games, a business model that Apple copied for the iPhone SDK and App Store. What does Sony have to match it?

      • by hansamurai (907719) <hansamurai@gmail.com> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:14PM (#29288787) Homepage Journal

        Creator's Club is simply nothing like the OtherOS support Sony had. One is for developing XNA framework games and selling them on Xbox Live, the other is for turning your PS3 into a slightly gimped Linux box (gimped as in no direct access to GPU). They're targeted at completely different people and don't even serve remotely the same purpose.

      • by GweeDo (127172)

        Mini's for the PSP. If that takes of I would expect to see it find its way onto the PS3.

        • by tepples (727027)

          Mini's for the PSP.

          I looked it up on Google, and based on what I read on Kotaku, it isn't much different from WiiWare or DSiWare. I didn't see anything about how developers can sign up, unlike XNA where anyone with a 360 and a recent Windows PC with non-Intel graphics can get started.

  • Stupid Article. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Reason58 (775044) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:39PM (#29288233)
    I'm in the "open source world".

    Should I stop caring about Burger King because I can't run Linux on a Whopper?
    • by Astroturtle (588703) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:53PM (#29288461) Homepage
      YES, DAMN IT. YES!
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I'm sure that a WOPR would run Linux just fine!

    • by skorch (906936)
      Sure, as a consumer you may have an interest in whatever suits you, but that interest is not in relation to your being a member of the "open source world". Any interaction you have with Whoppers and Whopper-related products are completely independent of your status as a member of the "open source world".

      Of course, the fact that ingredients and recipes for hamburgers are widely available, and I can make my own burgers at home with tools available to the public might make Hamburgers somewhat open-source. I
    • by Monkeedude1212 (1560403) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:56PM (#29288497) Journal

      ... Are you saying you got a Whopper to run Linux before?

      Link me to sauce.

      I mean source.

    • by Malkin (133793) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:22PM (#29288897)

      I agree. This quote really made me giggle:

      But by omitting the option to install GNU/Linux on its new PS3, it has removed the final reason for the open source world to care about Sony.

      Unless they -- I don't know -- like playing console games, like the vast majority of people who buy game consoles. My microwave oven doesn't run Linux, either, but it somehow manages to still be useful to me.

      Honestly, I think out-of-touch rants like this only serve to further reinforce the "Linux zealot" stereotype, and drive the mainstream away from Linux.

      • by Dragoness Eclectic (244826) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:51PM (#29289331)

        My microwave oven doesn't run Linux, either, but it somehow manages to still be useful to me.

        *whistles innocently*

        Don't be too sure about that. I've worked on embedded systems on consumer devices, and you'd be amazed at what runs Linux these days. Hardware manufacturers really like NOT paying license fees & royalties for their embedded firmware.

    • by H0p313ss (811249)

      I'm in the "open source world". Should I stop caring about Burger King because I can't run Linux on a Whopper?

      I tried making my own burgers from scratch and I still can't get the damn kernel to boot.

    • Re:Stupid Article. (Score:4, Informative)

      by jpmorgan (517966) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @02:24PM (#29289857) Homepage
      <quote>Should I stop caring about Burger King because I can't run Linux on a Whopper?</quote>

      Of course you can't. That's what NetBSD is for!
  • Are you surprised given that Sony has acknowledged it will sell the PS3 slim at a loss? [fudzilla.com]

    So yes, they've changed their strategy to boost sales of the new PS3 by selling at a loss and intending to make up the money on game sales. How many people will buy several of these and never play games on them? Probably not too many, but where do you draw the line?

    Stop acting like a kid who can't get what he wants.

  • duh (Score:5, Informative)

    by Sir_Sri (199544) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:43PM (#29288305)

    The problem is that PS3's are cheaper sources of Cell processors than anything IBM is selling. If you want to set up (at a university say) a research cluster of 4 or 8 Cell based computers for astrophysics, datamining, or the like, it was cheaper to buy PS3's than even consider the IBM bought Cell based servers. But then you weren't buying games, and Sony wasn't getting financial credit for subsidizing academic research (if they donated the equipment it would be a tax write off likely but if you buy it they get nothing, and since they're selling at a loss they only want you to buy if you'll buy games too).

    Also, as amusingly geeky as this was, how many of their gaming customers actually bothered? This was never an actual selling feature of the system, they were trying to circumvent EU import tariffs on game consoles that aren't on computers. The EU didn't buy it with the PS2, I doubt they bought it with the PS3.

  • I call BS (Score:5, Interesting)

    by overlordofmu (1422163) <overlordofmu@gmail.com> on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:49PM (#29288393)
    I love my PS3.

    I love Linux.

    Sony is the only console maker that DID support Linux.

    They dropped the support because it was an rarely utilized feature and it was cheaper not to support it on the new model.

    I run Linux on all my PCs (2 laptops and 4 desktops) but never installed it on my PS3 (despite having partitioned my upgraded hard drive with room for it). I never felt the need to do so. I run a media server on two of the Linux boxes and I don't need the PS3 to be a 7th general purpose computer when that is not it's intended function as one and not designed for that purpose.

    This fanboy of Linux (and fanboy of Sony as well) doesn't care about the dropped support. I thank Sony for all the support up to this point and wish this platform continued success.
  • Moody (Score:4, Funny)

    by whisper_jeff (680366) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:49PM (#29288397)
    After reading that summary and the completely transparent hatred for Sony in it I and forced to say that, yes, Glyn is Moody. ;)
  • by mo (2873) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @12:50PM (#29288417)
    I used to work for Sony developing PS2 games. The number of people I met that cut their teeth writing code on the linux kit before getting into the business was exactly 0. I might have been the only person I knew who even had a modchipped PS2, everybody else just didn't care since they had the PS2Tool on their desk to do development. Sony is probably discontinuing offering Linux because it didn't spark the development push that they had hoped for. Still, I would think this would limit the number of supercomputer clusters that use PS3's. You'd think the marketing benefits of being a platform in the top 100 supercomputers would be valuable, but perhaps Sony is still willing to work with academic institutions to make this possible still.
    • by tepples (727027)

      The number of people I met that cut their teeth writing code on the linux kit before getting into the business was exactly 0.

      On what platforms did they cut their teeth?

      • by mo (2873)

        Let me preface this answer by revealing that I no longer work in the video game industry, as I did not enjoy it enough to stay. A lot of people cut their teeth on writing Windows stuff for fun, maybe working on mods, but a fair amount of developers worked their way up from QA. At least where I worked, it seemed like there were way too many people wanting to get into the video games industry, and once they did get in, they worked their asses off. People would learn to code due to their love of games, not

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by masmullin (1479239)
      It didn't spark the development push because Sony crippled the ability for Linux to use all of the hardware.

      If they wanted to spark development, they should have let the OtherOS have free reign.
  • by brkello (642429) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:18PM (#29288845)
    Just summarize the article, don't whine to me about how you don't like Sony. I am able to evaluate actions they take individually. Rootkit = bad. PS3 not supporting linux = good business decision. They are in no way related to each other since this isn't replacing Linux on the PS3 with a rootkit.

    And seriously wake up. If you get pissed at Sony for the dumb things they do, then you probably wouldn't buy a product from anyone if you actually paid attention to all the crap that has gone on in each company's history.
  • by planetoid (719535) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:31PM (#29289029)
    Didn't Yellow Dog Linux and its utilities limit the hardware the user could and couldn't access if he wanted to develop? I think that said something about Sony's commitment to basic user freedoms long before this happened.
  • Be fair, now. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Toonol (1057698) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:46PM (#29289233)
    All Sony has done is reverted to the status quo for game consoles. The Wii and 360 don't allow Linux to be run. While Sony should be praised for including a (mostly gimped) linux option with the PS3, they shouldn't be condemned any more than Nintendo or Microsoft for not including it. I'm not a Sony fan at all.

    There's FAR better things to criticize Sony about.
  • So why CENSORSHIP? (Score:3, Informative)

    by faragon (789704) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @02:06PM (#29289595) Homepage
    The censored message (noticed by pjmlp [playstation2-linux.com]) was a reply from Sarah to a question I made (Why no Linux in PS3 Slim? [playstation2-linux.com]). The answer -verbatim- it was recovered because of mail lists and by backups: at Slashdot (1 [slashdot.org]), and also in a "repost" in the same PS2-Linux Sony's forum (2 [playstation2-linux.com], 3 [playstation2-linux.com]).

    Censored thread, recovered from mail list backup:

    http://playstation2-linux.com/forum/message.php?msg_id=51037 [playstation2-linux.com]

    Message: 51037
    BY: aragon
    DATE: 2009-Aug-21 06:26
    SUBJECT: Why no Linux in PS3 Slim?

    Hello,

    I've found very disgusting the fact of removing the Other OS option in the PS3 Slim model, and the worst: without explanation. In previous cuts, as it was with the PS2 compatibility it was explained that was in order to cut price, removing PS2 CPU chip first, and PS2 graphic and memory subsistem second, which I found acceptable as explanation.

    Why? Is being used unencrypted RAM access or similar? Or is just a plain rip-off?

    I know that there are many kind people at Sony Computer Entertainment, so please, if possible, give at least a short explanation of why it has been discontinued the Other OS option in the new PS3s.

    Thank you in advance,

    aragon

    P.S. PS2 Linux user since 2002, and since 2007 for the PS3.
    P.S.2. I still can not believe it, what a disgrace.

    Removed answer and further replies:

    Read and respond to this message at: http://playstation2-linux.com/forum/message.php?msg_id=51038 [playstation2-linux.com]
    By: sarahe

    Hi aragon,

    I'm sorry that you are frustrated by the lack of comment specifically regarding the withdrawal of support for OtherOS on the new PS3 slim.

    The reasons are simple: The PS3 Slim is a major cost reduction involving many changes to hardware components in the PS3 design. In order to offer the OtherOS install, SCE would need to continue to maintain the OtherOS hypervisor drivers for any significant hardware changes - this costs SCE. One of our key objectives with the new model is to pass on cost savings to the consumer with a lower retail price. Unfortunately in this case the cost of OtherOS install did not fit with the wider objective to offer a lower cost PS3.

    We'll see if we can get the offical OtherOS page updated with something to this effect so that an official explanation is provided. Thank you for your comments.

    Sarah.

    - - - - - - - -

    Read and respond to this message at: http://playstation2-linux.com/forum/message.php?msg_id=51039 [playstation2-linux.com] By: aragon

    Thank you very much for the answer, Sarah.

    Anyway, if its just a software related point, I hope that it may be addressed in the future, if users request is enough important for making worth the driver update effort.

    Best regards,

    aragon

    - - - - - - - -

    Read and respond to this message at: http://playstation2-linux.com/forum/message.php?msg_id=51040 [playstation2-linux.com]
    By: f5inet

    Thanks for the extra-official explain, sarahe.

    could will be possible for SCE to develop and sell a 'PS3-Slim OtherOS license'?. since there is a few wannabe/homebrew projects running in PS3 hardware (the cheapest IBM-cell developer machine), and these projects are dumped to dust with this major revision of PS3-architectur

  • Drupal (Score:4, Informative)

    by michaelcole (704646) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @03:15PM (#29290615)
    This headline is dramatic and uninformed. Linux isn't the only open source project out there.

    Sony has made huge contributions to the Drupal CMS (Website Content Management System).

    They have hired a full-time programmer who is 100% dedicated to open source (CCK/Views modules).
    They have sponsored major improvements to Drupal - http://drupal.org/node/383954 [drupal.org]

    Ease up on the rhetoric, before you sour other open-source projects.

    Maybe you want to couple your perceived right to hack the PS3 with open source? That's dangerous. Make an open-sourced PS3 and no problem. Mike
  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @03:26PM (#29290797)

    In the future Sony will refrain from supporting Linux in anything initially, because they get more flack for not supporting it in all models than do other console makers for never having supported it to begin with.

    It's this kind of mean-spirited crap that keeps Open Source as generally a second-class citizen on platforms.

As the trials of life continue to take their toll, remember that there is always a future in Computer Maintenance. -- National Lampoon, "Deteriorata"

Working...