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January 5, 2011 // 6:40 am - Today PlayStation 3 developer KaKaRoToKS has released the first PS3 Custom Firmware alongside a video of it in action below!

With KaKaRoToKS PlayStation 3 Custom Firmware, users can now run PS3 homebrew 3.55 signed packages (currently doesn't support PS3 game back-ups) via 'Install Package Files' on non-JailBroken PS3 consoles and access PSN for the moment.

Download: PS3Tools / PS3UPDAT.355Cfw.KaKaRoTo-1.3.pup (Removed app_home from XMB) / PS3UPDAT.355Cfw.KaKaRoTo-1.2.pup (More game_tool2.xml Fixes) / PS3UPDAT.355Cfw.KaKaRoTo-1.2.pup (Mirror) / PS3UPDAT.341Cfw.KaKaRoTo-1.2.pup / PS3UPDAT.355Cfw.KaKaRoTo-1.1.pup (Fixes Missing Game Data XMB Icons) / PS3UPDAT.355Cfw.KaKaRoTo.pup / PS3UPDAT.355Cfw.KaKaRoTo.pup (Mirror) / PS3UPDAT.341Cfw.KaKaRoTo.pup / PS3UPDAT.341Cfw.KaKaRoTo.pup (Mirror) / PS3 Category Game XMLs / GIT / PS3 Keys / PS3Keys GIT

Note: DO NOT try to install this from the service mode, it might brick your console, install it normally from the normal menu or the recovery menu. Regarding PS3 back-ups with CFW, from IRC: the payload currently remaps the Blu-ray to USB or internal if a back-up manager calls for it meaning don't expect support for them unless someone else adds it.

Additionally, Waninkoko has now updated FWTool for PS3 Firmware (not application) PKG files and it now decrypts, encrypts and signs properly.

To quote from his site: Great news! Thanks to the tools made by the fail0verflow team (and thanks to sven in particular for his work on the pkg/unpkg tools), the first “Custom Firmware” is now available for the PS3!

I see a lot of questions coming up really fast on my Twitter account, so here are the basic things you need to know :

Because of legal/copyright issues, I will not provide the custom firmware to anyone, however, I’ve made available all the tools necessary to transform an Official firmware update, into a custom one, just grab my ps3utils repository from github, compile, then run :


This will take the official firmware, unpack it, modify it, then repack it correctly (requires you to install ps3tools).

This requires Linux of course, but I’m sure others will do it for the masses and illegally release those files somewhere.

The advantage here is that you can do it for any firmware, if you want to keep version 3.41, then give it the 3.41 update, if you are on 3.55 already and can’t downgrade, then run the script on the official 3.55 firmware and it will create a modified 3.55 firmware.

You can put the file in a USB drive under the filename “PS3/UPDATE/PS3UPDAT.PUP” and then go to system update in the XMB, and it will allow you to install the update (even if you’re already on 3.55).

People are asking what are the features of this firmware, it’s simple, all it does is to add those “Install Package Files” options to the Game section of the XMB. It doesn’t do anything else!

This firmware will not allow you to run the currently available homebrew application. Once the homebrew developers re-package their files in a ‘retail’ .pkg format with signed executable, then it will work (this should be coming soon thanks to the work of the fail0verflow team).

Since the kernel is left unmodified, this means that this custom firmware is really meant for future homebrew installation, and it will not allow piracy. I plan on keeping it that way.

This is just the first attempt at custom firmware, and it only contains a minor modification to allow you to install pkg files directly, eventually we’ll get some more options added to it in the future. This is just starting to get interesting!

p.s: Thanks to everyone who helped make this possible!


Brief guide:

1. Download ps3 utilities and ps3 tools from github / team fail0verflow:

git clone

cd ps3utils
cd ..
git clone git://
cd ps3tools
cp pkg unpkg ../ps3utils

2. Grab the PS3 encryption/decryption/signing keys from github:

git clone ~/.ps3

3. Download PS3 3.55 (or whatever official firmware PUP)
4. Extract and copy “PS3UPDAT.PUP” to the “ps3utils” directory
5. Create the PS3 Custom Firmware (CFW) from the original/official update (OFW):

cd ps3utils

6. Copy and rename CFW.PUP to a USB storage device keeping this directory structure in mind: /PS3/UPDATE/PS3UPDAT.PUP
7. Connect that USB device to your PS3 and install from Settings -> System Update

If you’re currently running 3.41 (or earlier) you can either remain there and create a specific CFW PUP for that version, or you can upgrade to a later PS3 firmware version, like 3.55 for example. It’s whatever original PUP file you use — only you cannot flash a version lower than the current version installed on your PS3.

So if you’re already at 3.55, where you’re unable to downgrade, then for the moment you have no other choice but CFW (or OFW) 3.55. 3.41 on the other hand: upgrade or create CFW 3.41 and for the interim you’re still able to jailbreak and run unsigned homebrew. Other things to note:

1. This CFW does not modify the kernel in any way, meaning all the current compiled homebrew out there will not install or run using “Install Package Files” from the XMB.
2. With the above point in mind you should know this CFW does not enable backups - straight homebrew.
3. Current PS3 homebrew and new homebrew will need to be “retail” packaged and signed; that’ll happen with fail0verflow's tools.
4. This is only the beginning.

Video: KaKaRoToKS Releases First PS3 Custom Firmware!

Video: KaKaRoToKS Releases First PS3 Custom Firmware!

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#123 - Bishoff - January 5, 2011 // 10:35 pm
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Too bad you simply can't just copy the firmware after it's been jailbroke and save it in it's current form, then reflash it back

#122 - skotosa - January 5, 2011 // 10:17 pm
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If you use the CFW you lose JB. I'd like to see some NTFS support, not sure if it can even be done though.

#121 - deadpixel99 - January 5, 2011 // 10:00 pm
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Too bad your completely WRONG it is not against the law to release a loader that allows you to play pirated games the game it self is illegal ( depending on the tools used to make it , you could argue) it's more of a moral issue if anything.

#120 - Brenza - January 5, 2011 // 9:57 pm
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It's wonderful, thanks kakaroto! Just one question: I'm currently running the original 3.41 fw, if i install this can i still use jb?

If no can i come back to original 3.41?

#119 - superste2201 - January 5, 2011 // 9:55 pm
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It clearly says if you are on 3.55 already and can’t downgrade, then run the script on the official 3.55 firmware and it will create a modified 3.55 firmware. Read and can't downgrade.

However it would be possible spoofing as daveribz says, however there will be no point. All the CFW's will now come out all signed and using the currently version, no downgrade required.

Now that we devs can sign anything we want, you just need to sit back and wait. No need for jailbreak, no need for downgrade.

#118 - nicotine - January 5, 2011 // 9:55 pm
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reverse engineering/hacking is LEGAL as long as no inside documents/source code are used and/or sold. he's made NO money/profit, and he didn't release any tool that directly DOES piracy of any sorts. all he's done is opened the system up.

just like how emulators are legal provided no bios files were used. reverse engineering is legal as long as no proprietary info/documents/code are used that are copywritten.

#117 - daveribz - January 5, 2011 // 9:40 pm
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It is, probably, but no one has tried yet. You need to edit the files/header information to return a version greater than what is currently installed on your system. I personally did not take a peek at what kind of editing is needed on a update PUP, but it shouldn't be that hard judging by the way games and such are verified.

What is still unclear though is the consequences such a downgrade would bring to your PS3. Pretty sure it would not do much.

#116 - anulu82 - January 5, 2011 // 9:35 pm
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if i'd be in the place of Sony, i'd let go this thing on it's way and hire the peoples who made this to create the cryptography of PS4

#115 - oVERSoLDiER - January 5, 2011 // 9:32 pm
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Go on 3.55 than you can install the Custom Firmware. This works without a problem, but downgrading is not possible.

#114 - flashpc - January 5, 2011 // 9:31 pm
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But this has been outlined in kakarotoks cfw, can anyone confirm that this works?