Sony Kills Off Linux Support in New PS3 Update

Sony has announced that the upcoming PS3 3.21 firmware update will disable the "Install Other OS" feature. Available on models released before the availability of the PS3 Slim, the feature is useful for people who wish to run Linux on their console and organizations who use clusters of PS3s as supercomputing networks. However, Sony today announced that after April 1, users running Linux would no longer be able to access their data. The company is citing security concerns as the reason the feature must be axed.

If you're desperate to hang onto your Linux install, Sony's head of PR Charlotte Panther, says you can choose not to upgrade to 3.21 when it becomes available this Thursday but details that certain features will no longer be available to you:

Ability to sign in to PlayStation Network and use network features that require signing in to PlayStation Network, such as online features of PS3 games and chat.Playback of PS3 software titles or Blu-ray Disc videos that require PS3 system software version 3.21 or later.Playback of copyright-protected videos that are stored on a media server (when DTCP-IP is enabled under Settings).Use of new features and improvements that are available on PS3 system software 3.21 or later.

Those of you who do plan on updating are advised to back up any data stored within the partition used by Linux; you won't be able to access it after you update.

  • babybeluga
    Epic picture.
  • This mostly hurts the individual enthusiast. Research groups that use the PS3 as a mini super computer probably don't depend on it's ability to play new games or interface with PSN.
  • -Alessandro-
    ...and this is how you step backwards !
  • pcxt21
    Well s@#$t Linux and Battlefield 1943(Online) were the 2 reason I even have a ps3. I have to choose? This is Sony BS through and through, someone probably found out how to mod the console via Linux..
  • dbowlin17
    sony, go die in a hole. linux is king.
  • Regulas
    ZZZzzz, I had one of the first PS3 models and installed the one flavor of Linux that was designed for it. It was OK but nothing to right home about. I will stick with my Linux running my laptop and leave the PS3 to do what it does best, play games and watch blue ray movies.
  • EvilMonk
    I see it like that.
    Always removing features since the original PS3.

    First PS3 at E3 -> Quote from Wikipedia "The initial prototype shown in May 2005 featured two HDMI ports, three Ethernet ports and six USB ports"

    Released product -> "when the system was shown again a year later at E3 2006, these were reduced to one HDMI port, one Ethernet port and four USB ports"

    80Gb version, software PS2 backward compatibility.

    40Gb PS3, no PS2 backward compatibility and only 2 USB ports.

    PS3 Slim, no Other OS support.

    Wow sony, stop removing stuff of your PS3, I paid my PS3 Fat with the linux support on it, I shouldn't have features removed from my PS3 once I paid for them.
  • After April 1st?
  • troger5troger5
    Everyone bought this thing for different things. My reason was Blu-ray movie playback. So is something like below going to happen sometime? Very bad business to sell something and remove those selling point features. People should be able to return the product. It would be like buying a car because it has a 5.0 litre engine, then the company recalls the engine and give you a 2.0. Not the same product.
  • invlem
    The only reason I see for this change is to prevent hacking (such as a possible back door into the system).

    Why else restrict a feature thats been part of the system for last 1.5 years?

    That or they're too lazy to maintain 2 OS variants, one with the linux feature for the Fats, and one without on the slims.