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08 April 2010, 12:05

Hacker previews custom 3.21 PS3 firmware with Linux support

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PS3 Logo A hacker by the name of George Hotz, also known as Geohot, has announced that he has successfully created his own custom firmware for the PlayStation 3 (PS3) console that doesn't lose OtherOS support following the recent 3.21 update from Sony. Last week, Sony announced that its new 3.21 firmware upgrade for the PS3, released on the 1st of April, would remove the "Install Other OS" option, which allowed users to install Linux, from all versions of the console. The company cited "security concerns" as the reason for the removal.

Less than 48 hours after Sony's announcement, Hotz called for PS3 owners not to update their systems and announced that he would find "a safe way of updating to retain OtherOS support". Hotz has now published a video of the working custom firmware, which he calls 3.21OO, as proof on YouTube. The hacker says that the custom firmware can be "installed without having to open up your PS3, just by restoring a custom generated PUP file, but only from 3.15 or previous".

While the software updates from Sony are optional, only users with the latest release of the firmware can sign into the PSN network to buy or play games online. Hotz advises users that have chosen not to install 3.2.1 to "use the proxy hack to play online with 3.15". Additionally, some Blu-ray movies may require firmware version 3.21 or higher to play. A release date for Hotz's custom firmware, however, has yet to be announced.

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