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May 4, 2011 // 12:24 am - Today PlayStation 3 hacker Geoffrey Levand (or at least someone using his name) has released a PS3 Dual Boot GameOS / Linux Custom Firmware (CFW) which allows the dual-booting of both GameOS and OtherOS.

PS3 Custom Firmware Downloads: (Updated file links HERE!)

PS3 Custom Firmware Download Mirrors:

PS3 CFW Tools:

PS3 Dual Boot GameOS / Linux CFW

Note: Currently to start OtherOS. boot_otheros.pkg then reboot.pkg and that will load petitboot. Slim users (Version 1.0-r0) you must unload the slim usb drivers in order to boot.

ps3mfw/tasks/patch_profile.tcl is to be considered unstable and should not be used at this time.

All tools beep twice if they succeed !!!

Source code for all tools and patches is freely available. Create your own dual boot.


  • Into HV integrated OtherOS bootloader loader (compatible with OtherOS bootloader on 3.15)
  • OtherOS bootloader is booted directly from HV, no GameOS is involved.
  • Process of booting OtherOS bootloader loader is very similar to 3.15 method
  • Booting Linux from HDD/USB/BD/Network
  • Linux with GameOS rights
  • Full access to all HV SS services (Dispatcher Manager) from GameOS or Linux
  • Full access to all System Manager services
  • Ability to create/modify/remove repository nodes in LPAR 1 (e.g. with ps3dm-utils or ps3hvc-utils). This ability gives you much power over the whole system because many layers of PS3 use repository nodes to exchange information.
  • Enabled QA mode in Update Manager
  • Downgrading without USB dongle or Service Mode
  • Ability to deactivate/activate HDD/VFLASH encryption (e.g. with ps3stor-utils)
  • Suuport for ps3-utils. You can flash new OtherOS bootloader from Linux e.g.


  • Tested 3.41 and 3.55 on PS3 Slim with Gentoo and Debian Squeeze but should work on PS3 Fat without problems
  • Bug reports are welcome, send it please to [email][email protected][/email]

Work in progress:

  • Creating OtherOS partitions directly on HDD (not VFLASH)
  • Permanently disabling HDD/VFLASH encryption
  • Mapping of HTAB with R/W permission
  • SYSCON access from LPAR 2
  • FreeBSD support

Installing OtherOS bootloader

  • Tested ONLY on PS3 models with VFLASH
  • During deleting of VFLASH regions GameOS will ask you to reinstall firmware, don't do it, just press PS3 button and continue
  • I use petitboot as OtherOS bootloader. You could use a different one.
  • The following order of steps is important
  • Delete VFLASH region 6
  • Delete VFLASH region 5
  • Create VFLASH region 5
  • Create VFLASH region 6
  • Install OtherOS bootloader on VFLASH with "Install OtherOS"

Booting OtherOS bootloader

  • Run "Boot OtherOS"
  • Reboot GameOS with "Reboot"

Creating a VFLASH partition for Linux


  • Works ONLY on PS3 models with VFLASH
  • Warning: All your HDD data will be lost, so make a backup
  • I'm currently working on a solution for PS3 models with NAND flash
  • Resize VFLASH (creates a 40GB free space on VFLASH, if you need more then feel free to recompile it)
  • Reboot GameOS
  • Create VFLASH region 7

Installing Linux with petitboot

Installing Gentoo GNU/Linux from a Unix/Linux System

Partitioning with fdisk


  • I used petitboot to install Debian and Gentoo on VFLASH
  • I used fdisk to partition ps3vflashh
  • Make sure you create a swap partition
  • Creating a ready to use Linux distribution images is a work in progress

Booting Linux with petitboot


  • USB driver in petitboot has problems on PS3 Slim. The problem lies in Linux USB driver.
  • Currently i'm trying to fix this problem in Linux kernel
  • I temporarily use my script to boot a Linux installed on VFLASH from petitboot

PS3 Dual Boot GameOS / Linux Custom Firmware (CFW) Arrives

PS3 Dual Boot GameOS / Linux Custom Firmware (CFW) Arrives

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#10 - cyberfix - May 4, 2011 // 3:59 pm
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With full HV access, I can't wait until accelerated OpenGL drivers or such take advantage of it within Linux. This would bring more gaming opportunities and other media center choices.

It only does everything thanks to hackers!

#9 - aamir007 - May 4, 2011 // 2:47 pm
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This is awesome news, great to have a feature that was removed from us back again and better.

#8 - GrandpaHomer - May 4, 2011 // 11:39 am
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The latter...

#7 - elser1 - May 4, 2011 // 10:43 am
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under work in progress it says "Permanently disabling HDD/VFLASH encryption"

does this mean fw checks for games? or is this so you can use hdd on other devs without formatting etc?

#6 - Natepig - May 4, 2011 // 9:23 am
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It will be great if soon you could boot a user friendly distro of linux from external hdd, I have loads of them lying around.

I wonder if the game os part of the cfw has the same functions of kmeaw 3.55?

#5 - elser1 - May 4, 2011 // 9:14 am
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sounds kool.. what does this actually allow you to do anyway..

#4 - syphonlord - May 4, 2011 // 8:13 am
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Great news with everything that's going on right now, it's great to see someone doing something to keep the scene alive, congrats to who ever he or she may be.

#3 - niwakun - May 4, 2011 // 7:50 am
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kinda messy right now... you have to mess with the vflash or something...

waiting for the old style OtherOS booting and hoping that the partition can now be larger than 10gb this time...

#2 - Breach - May 4, 2011 // 7:47 am
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Awesome news. Heading to bed, but will surely check this out tomorrow!!

#1 - GrandpaHomer - May 4, 2011 // 7:47 am
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Nice progress - still not 100% polished and user friendly / dumnb proof but definitely a step into the right direction.