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New PS3 Firmware Causing HDD Upgrade Problems? 82

Channard writes "While there have been occasional reports of previous PS3 firmware upgrades causing system crashes and so forth, Sony's new firmware upgrade for the system, 3.41, is apparently stopping PS3 owners from upgrading their hard disks. This problem has been encountered by many users on Sony's forums and occurs when you try to put a new hard disk into a PS3 that already has the firmware upgrade installed. The general course of action for upgrading a PS3's drive is that you download the latest PS3 firmware onto a memory stick and, after swapping the hard drive in the PS3, plug the stick in, allowing the PS3 to properly prepare the disk for use. But as of upgrade 3.41, the PS3 fails to recognize the firmware on the stick, complaining that it can't proceed until you insert the correct firmware. Repeating the process and re-downloading the firmware does not fix the problem, as I can confirm, having encountered the problem myself. Users can put the old hard disk back in, provided they've not reformatted it for some other purpose, so all is not lost. Sony have apparently told gaming website CVG that 'The information available to our Consumer Services Department does not suggest that this is a problem PlayStation owners are likely to experience when upgrading the HDD with 3.41 update.' This seems to fly in the face of the currently available information — although whether or not this statement was issued by Kevin Butler is unclear. Either way, PS3 owners encountering this problem will likely have to wait a few days for a fix and use their old HDDs for now."
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New PS3 Firmware Causing HDD Upgrade Problems?

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  • Or does this mean that Sony will soon force PS3 owners to upgrade to only "approved" hard drives? (Like Microsoft with the 360, only slightly less obvious.)
    • by Moryath ( 553296 )

      Wouldn't surprise me.

      They still haven't bothered to fix all the audio glitch/skipping hell that the last couple firmware updates unleashed too.

      Typical $ony. They rushed around to fuck over homebrew, and broke half the machine in the process. It's the PSP all over again.

      • What audio glitches?

        • by cynyr ( 703126 )

          some of my old rips that played beutifly before the otherOS removal and such now "skip" and "pop" during playback. The files play back just fine in mplayer and vlc.

          • by Moryath ( 553296 )

            I'm having retail titles - as old as FF13, as new as the new Transformers that came out a couple weeks ago.

            Official response from $ony "tech support" both by phone and online: "oh just turn off 5.1 sound in the dashboard and go down to stereo and it'll be fine." Well WHAT THE FUCK IS THE POINT OF MY HAVING A 5.1 SURROUND SYSTEM THEN?

            They know about this. They're just too fucking lazy to fix it properly. Seems to be connected to one of the boneheaded ass-tastic new DRM schemes they added in 2-3 updates ago.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by vuffi_raa ( 1089583 )
      this is a stupid mistake that sony made- normally you have to download the entire firmware, this is the first time that sony has experimented in releasing an incremental update so that the update only takes a couple of minutes instead of the usual half hour- most probably they will either need to make the software request additional components that will need to be on the thumb drive or create a drive formatting in the flash that allows for an incremental upgrade or just allow you to download the entire firm
  • by Aladrin ( 926209 ) on Friday July 30, 2010 @09:44PM (#33092148)

    There have been so many companies in denial lately... Customers complain about a legit problem and they say 'It's not a problem. You're doing it wrong.' and try to ignore it. Then it blows up on them and they only respond when faced with hundreds of lawsuits. Seriously guys, start listening to your customers.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Sleepy ( 4551 )

      It's a balancing act. if a company REALLY listened to their customers, they would get sued by their shareholders instead. Yes, this does happen...

    • There have been so many companies in denial lately...

      There have also been a lot of folks playing for the jackpot in the class-action lawsuit lotto.

    • by adolf ( 21054 ) <> on Friday July 30, 2010 @11:40PM (#33092796) Journal

      It's not just "these days." And it's not just mass-market gear.

      I can count on one hand the number of expensive products (think $40,000 to $800,000) that actually worked, as advertised and promised, out of the box. Everything else (I don't think I have enough fingers to count these systems) was broken, even if it'd already been around in production and use for more than a decade.

      Fortunately, these low-volume widgets are usually produced by relatively small companies, and it's not a completely harrowing experience to set up a conference call with their tech support, the engineer who designed it, and a responsible party (CEO or owner).

      But even at this price range, the first suggestion is always "You're doing it wrong." Which, sometimes, I actually am (I'm not perfect). Sometimes it's a software fix that needs put together, other times it's hardware. One time, we had to send a bunch of expensive PTZ cameras back (which were mounted on 100' towers) for fixes because their internal grounding structure was gorfed such that they kept blowing up without provocation.

      In another case, we had engineers from another country on-site for days at a time, fixing real problems that they were initially claimed were impossible. This was successful, thankfully, but once we got it all working correctly they killed the entire (years-old, generally stable, best-of-breed) product line. (WTF?)

      Disclaimer: I work with communications and control systems, not the IT stuff typical of Slashdot. My experience with IT things has been pretty good, but then we don't really ever use any non-mass-market IT stuff since we don't ever need to. I'd be interested in knowing if folks ever have similar problems with (say) low-volume/high-end Cisco or NetApp gear, or if my career is uniquely doomed to consist largely of making companies fix the stuff that they sold us.

      • by amorsen ( 7485 )

        Even mid-range Cisco gear has similar problems. If you care enough, read the cisco-nsp archives, search for 7600... Apparently the high end has its share of interesting issues too, but they don't come up so often on that list, and I haven't had the chance to play with it myself.

        Similarly with the FortiGate 3016B, another mid-range product. Very nice firewall which had some interesting NAT issues. Fortunately FortiNet has fixed the issues I found (pretty good tech support at least compared to e.g. Cisco). I

    • It depends on the proportion of complaint. A few : ignore them, even if they yell loudly they will be seen as whiner calling for the whambulance by fanboi, which will do your own PR by saiyng "you did it wrong" , "I have no problem here", etc... You know that type of fanboi which write in tech support forum to say for them it works. Above a certain number then they do react and admit error in a round about way, to avoid liability. Once the error is widespread they will do much more PR.

      Basially here this i
    • Sony has never been a customer-oriented company, dating all the way back to Betamax. Their bread-and-butter is professional-level services like TV stations and national production studios. The engineers that work at these places have the patience (and money) to follow Sony's continual upgrade path.

      Customers don't. Customers just want to buy something and keep it for 5-10 years. Customers want it to "just work". But Sony prefers to keep offering new products every year - like releasing Betamax I, then B

    • Lately? More like always?!

  • Remember! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Daetrin ( 576516 )
    The PS3, it only does everything! (Where "everything" does not include all the features removed by hardware or software "upgrades" since the release of the original model.)
  • Old problem (Score:3, Interesting)

    by phoenix0783 ( 965193 ) on Friday July 30, 2010 @09:59PM (#33092226)
    I've had this problem in the past. When I used a usb hdd instead of a thumbdrive, everything worked fine. Don't ask me why, though...
  • Peanut butter cups (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GrumblyStuff ( 870046 ) on Friday July 30, 2010 @10:01PM (#33092228)

    "Hey! You got computer upgrade problems in my console!"

    "You got simplified game design and locked down, monetization of normally free extras and support in my computer games!"


  • by Yosho-sama ( 800703 ) <Yosho,NIN&gmail,com> on Friday July 30, 2010 @10:05PM (#33092256)
    The day that PSN bugged out on Feb 29.

    I kept reading about how this was Sony's plot to get everyone to upgrade to the new models in order to keep users from having access to the Other OS feature.

    You guys need to chill the fuck out. It's a bug. Sony announced in advance that they were removing the Other OS feature from the firmware. They announce every time they release a firmware removing something. I'm not the Other OS removal wasn't a completely dick move (which it was), but they are always straight forward and have never made any (noticed) stealth changes to the firmware. Besides, I think they have enough Class Action Lawsuits on their plates to go and brick their own product for an unannounced, unreleased proprietary hard drive format.
    • I'm really hoping it's a bug because I just got a 500GB drive to replace in my PS3. As my data is getting backed up (1 hour to go) I thought I'd check out what's new on Slashdot. Shit! I'm giving this a try and will update on what happens. My PS3 is the original 60GB model with the very latest firmware.

    • by mrmeval ( 662166 )

      Was the root kit announced? No.

      I bought my first television from them. That television was a 19" that cost $749+tax in 1984 dollars. It had the best picture I'd ever seen. It worked flawlessly from 1894 to 1993 when a part failed. I replaced it and it worked until I gave it away in 1999. It worked for it's new owner until 2005 when it needed the same part replaced. The part was no longer available and it went in the garbage.

      In 1999 I'd looked at getting a Sony but nothing they had in the store stood out. I

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Yosho-sama ( 800703 )
        It's funny that you mention all that, cause all of that has nothing to do with the Sony PS3 firmware bugs, i.e. what this conversation is about.
      • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )

        It worked flawlessly from 1894 to 1993

        Wow, 99 years? That is impressive.

  • I just have a cd with the firmware on it and the PS3 has NEVER had a hard time loading from the CD. I have tried Mem Sticks before and its a mixed bag of results. I have upgraded both my own old style big PS3 and a few friends new (and old) versions, some on multiple occasions as they went to a different drive for whatever reason.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ect5150 ( 700619 )
      No way man... I'm over there in the forums with this problem. I have tried CD-Rs, DVD-Rs, USB Drives, External HDD.. others have tried all sorts of variations, even people that have done this successfully in the past - everything comes up bupkiss for a lot of the new models if you had already installed the new firmware on the old HDD, and are just upgrading or replacing the drive. I'm lucky because my old HDD still works, but others old HDD crapped out - so they are stuck with a paperweight until this is
  • by Khyber ( 864651 ) <> on Friday July 30, 2010 @10:37PM (#33092500) Homepage Journal

    Mirror your old drive's contents onto the new drive (Sony even provided a software backup feature IRC for this purpose.)
    Install in PS3.
    Works like a charm.

    Seriously, external media just sucks and is not system-critical to operation. Use system-critical components for the transfer, and you won't have much of an issue.

  • Only later models (Score:4, Informative)

    by jonabbey ( 2498 ) * <> on Friday July 30, 2010 @11:14PM (#33092680) Homepage

    The original PS3 models probably don't suffer from this, as they use on-board flash ram chips to hold the firmware.

    Later versions of the PS3 cut out those flash ram chips as a cost-saving measure, in favor of bootstrapping the firmware from the hard drive. These models store the firmware on the drive, and these are the ones that might have this problem.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I was a fan of those commercials until I found out the guy was an actor, tbh I felt misled given they state he is an actual VP at Sony. I thought "wow that's cool they have a real employee doing their marketing".

  • by anomaly256 ( 1243020 ) on Saturday July 31, 2010 @01:10AM (#33093222)
    I notice the usual download for the 3.41 update is a PATCH image not a full image. Perhaps the problem is people aren't putting a FULL 3.41 image on their usb sticks? Just an idea..
  • Could this be something to do with the informous DRM to prevent prople Coping PS3 games to other PS3s? Probabily not but then this is sony.
  • Get your sh*t together sony, already...seriously, this should not be happening.!

    I told my dad and uncle that instead of buying a new blu ray dvd player for 250$, they could invest a few bucks more and get a ps3 that plays blu rays, and will be able to play 3d when their patch comes out, and also play games, music, and even avi formatted movies from a usb key....all in all a great purchase, except when I read about these things,....the regular user wont know what the hell is going on, unless they got someone

Never worry about theory as long as the machinery does what it's supposed to do. -- R. A. Heinlein