Each week or so we will post a brief report from the resident PS3 Devs here, and below is one for this week:
The PS3 Boot-up Procedure.
The SCC (Super Companion Chip), made by Toshiba gets the PS3 started up. It reads asecure_loader from flash, and loads it into SPE in isolation mode. The Flash reading is interesting, as the data on the flash chips are interleaved, so the SCC merges them, among other things.
asecure_loader is then decrypted and ran, and it brings up lv1ldr. The keys for self decryption (among other things) are most likely accessible at this time.
lv1ldr is then decrypted and ran, and verifies the integrity of lv1.self , decrypts and runs it.
lv1.self is most likely our base code, also known as the Hypervisor. The Hypervisor then calls lv2ldr.
lv2ldr is ran, and it runs lv2_kernel.self
LV2 kernel.self is essentially the PS3OS, it starts up, brings the XMB up, any game/movie in the drive.
This is a solid working theory. Without expensive hardware, we can not confirm this 100%, but it is the most logical approach!