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How to format your PS3 hard drive on a PC?

This discussion thread has 49 messages.

#1
Does anyone know how to format a PS3 hard drive using a PC? I did a lot of research and came up with minimal data. I remove the hard drive from the PS3, install it in an enclosure and hook it up to my PC via the included USB cord. My PC will not recognize the drive and I believe it's because the PS3 is formatted using a Linux file system...so knowing that I booted up Kanotix on my PC but I don't know how to find the hard drive or even format it even if I did know where it was.

Any ideas or know how to format the PS3 hard drive on a PC?

-Shut up, I'm not good with directions!
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#3
Thanks for the information, unfortunately that program isn't working for me because I'm running Vista on my computer (only keeping it on there until my warranty runs out then it's XP time) and the program only works on OS's up to XP. So I'm hoping that there is another version of this program out there or that there is another course of action to take with this problem.

-Shut up, I'm not good with directions!
#4
@liamrabey

Have you tried that program with a PS3 HDD? If it worked, then I would definitely keep it in mind when I upgade my PS3 HDD.

Thanks!
#5
chrissy12 Suspended due non-functional email address
does it not show up at all?? i had to format mine under Xp because i tryd it in vista on my laptop it wud wudnt recognise it.. when i did recognise it i rightd click in click format n chaged it to NTFS
#6
Nope, it doesn't show up at all. Not in swissknife, not in my computer...nothing. The only time I can get any kind of response out of the PS3 hard drive is when I boot up in Kanotix. This is really stressing me out, I do not want to shell out $150 to Sony to get this fixed. I'm constantly doing more and more research to try to fix this but all I get is dead ends. Any help is greatly appreciated.

-Shut up, I'm not good with directions!
#7
UPDATE:

I booted up the installation disk for OSX86 on my laptop, went to their Disk Utility program and was able to see the hard drive with the option to erase and format with a new file system. I now need to know what file system I should format in. It gives me the macos (journaled and non journaled (but I don't think I need either of them)) Unix based (which I thought sounded as if it would be the most similar) and MS-DOS based. Any ideas?

-Shut up, I'm not good with directions!
#8
Go for MS-DOS, as you want to use it with a MicroSoft product, this should at least get it to show up in Windows.
#9
Oh no no no, I apologize. Maybe I wasn't clear on my plans...I just want to format this drive so that when I put it back in my PS3 I can use it in there again. ( My PS3 locked up after $150)

-Shut up, I'm not good with directions!
#10
Originally posted by gordner:
Oh no no no, I apologize. Maybe I wasn't clear on my plans...I just want to format this drive so that when I put it back in my PS3 I can use it in there again. ( My PS3 locked up after $150)
Ok there is a small problem with what you want to do. When you insert a formated HDD in your PS3, the PS3 is still going to make you format it again. During the format process an encryption is layered over the HDD. No how many times, or what you use to format, the ps3 is still going to make you format. Thats why you can't put your hard drive in another PS3 and use it without formatting. In your situation you will still need to format the drive using your PS3.

What do you mean it locked up after $150?
#11
Whoops, I meant to say my PS3 locked up after I did a system update and I don't want to shell out $150 for Sony to fix it. Anyway I went ahead and formatted the HDD via disk utility on the OSX86 install disk and now when I plug the drive back in the PS3 I get no picture or anything. Did I mess something up with what I did? I'm going to try plugging my drive into a friends PS3 and see if I can get anything on his

-Shut up, I'm not good with directions!
#12
Right idea, but I think you went to far. Go into control panel into computer management, then to disc management. This ought to let you see that drive so you can wipe it clean.

As ooZEROoo said
Quote:
Ok there is a small problem with what you want to do. When you insert a formated HDD in your PS3, the PS3 is still going to make you format it again. During the format process an encryption is layered over the HDD. No how many times, or what you use to format, the ps3 is still going to make you format. Thats why you can't put your hard drive in another PS3 and use it without formatting. In your situation you will still need to format the drive using your PS3
The trick here is no formatting at all. Just reset it to straight zeros, do not use any utility disc software because if it doesn't do it to ntfs it will put it to fat 32 or unix. Let the console do the work and you ought to be fine. Why its not working right now is your unit is now looking for an operating system due to the formatting in place.
#13
Quote:
Why its not working right now is your unit is now looking for an operating system due to the formatting in place.
I'm not sure about this, the PS3 OS is not stored on the HDD and so should not be looking for it on the HDD, I would have thought the PS3 would just re-format it if you inserted it.
#14
yeah me too but now when I plug my HDD in to my PS3 nothing at all comes on the TV.

-Shut up, I'm not good with directions!
#15
computer technology 101: When a bios loads up all it does is checks for faults. After which it proceeds normally to look for an operating system. Another facet of the ps3 when the hdd is formatted with either ntfs, or fat 32 will make it act like a laptop!

Ace Ventura - pet detective: 'The engine is running but uh... one is behind the wheel.'
#16
swiss knife worked perfectly for me, im so happy now :) im using the launch 60gb btw... :D:D
#17
I downloaded linux, but wasn't that impressed with the software. I think you are better off using your ps3 for games and downloading any music etc. and using your home laptop or computer with windows etc to do work.
After downloading linux i set it to load first before the ps3 system by selecting in the system settings to load first (under i think other os) so when you turn it on, linux comes on first.
Because i wasn't that impressed with it, I tryed to get rid of linux, by restoring ps3 settings (return to default settings etc, although this just meant that when i next loaded the ps3 linux came on but wouldn't load to the desktop like usual...which meant i couldn't switch to playing games or do anything.
So i removed the hard drive, and put it in a usb caddy, installed swiss knife which enabled me to delete the hard drive and format it.
I then put it back in the ps3
i was then prompted to load version 2.5 or greater. after realising this could only be done a set way (according to the ps3 website, so the ps3 can pick the folder up!) i created a folder called PS3, and in that folder i created a folder called UPDATE and in this folder i saved PS3UPDAT.PUP which is version 2.5 downloaded from the ps3 website http://uk.playstation.com/help-support/p...tware/download/ you have to click agree at the bottom. Now you then save the folder PS3 to disk and insert it in the ps3 when prompted for version 2.5 or more and press start and select. this enables you to go back to setting the basic settings, which is what you do if you get a new hard drive when you upgrade as well.

But as i had a problem with my linux, after selecting return to ps3 default settings etc, the linux still came back, and part loaded. I then learnt to hold the ps3 consoles button (if you can call it a button).. next to were you eject the disks, and after two beeps it should reset and prompt you to do all your settings again...time etc and load back to the main ps3 page.
and in an effort to get rid of linux, i went in system settings, and were i partitioned the hard drive before to load linux, i now formatted the hard drive to give it all to the ps3 to hopefully get rid of linux. I will know if it works in what...5hrs..gutted
what a pain

Keighley
#18
you can fix it but you will lose what you had on the ps3's harddrive , take the hd out , you have to have sata connections on your computer you hook the ps3's hd to your motherboard ,unplug your hd and put a windows disk in get to the partion part and partion your ps3's hd , then unhook it and plug it back into your ps3 turn it on it should ask you to format say yes and it should work again
#19
Thing s the PC does detect the hdd, but wont show it because it is formatted in an unrecognised format.

To get it to detect teh hdd, goto Control Panel, then Admin Tools, then Computer Management.

n the new window click Disk management on the left and on the right in the bottom window, scroll down until you see a disk which is the same size as the ps3 hdd. Be careful not to select any drive or partiton you have that is of a siilar size!

When you find it, right click it and quick format using NTFS. This will allow it to be seen by the PC. note that windows will only format hdds in fat32 upto a maximum of 10gb, so dont do that.

To format the entire hdd as fat use a program which probably is listed above which lets you do more than 10gb.


If you are just formatting to clear the hdd and start from fresh, just format upto the quick ntfs bit then put it back in the ps3 which will ask you to format the hdd again. note you will probably need firmware 2.43 or above, as the ps3 will ask for it, just have that on a usb drive ready.
#20
I got a question:

If you get your ps3 hdd to pop up on your PC, is it possible to copy your gamesaves to the PC and then transfer them to a new ps3-system via some usb-device?
#21
Willie - why not just plug a USB device into your Playstaion directly and copy your saves that way?
#22
well, my ps3 died (YLOD), I went and bought a new one and now I'm trying to figure out how to get my gamesaves back, if possible.. we're talking PLENTY hours playingtime "lost".....
#23
Ahhhh, sorry mate I do not think it is possible.
#24
OK. But I have my 40gb HD that I just took from my PS3 and I want to turn it to a usb Fat32 external for my Ps3. Just like a thumb stick.
The problem here is that windowsXP will not pick it up. Not even disk management will see it. I hear that Soney uses another type of formatting so we can't use the hd's after they are taken out.
True?
Well, what I need is to get it going. Anyone have the solution? Can't label it cause I can't see it, even in disk Management.

A small profit is no loss.
#25
Originally posted by tapdatast:
OK. But I have my 40gb HD that I just took from my PS3 and I want to turn it to a usb Fat32 external for my Ps3. Just like a thumb stick.
The problem here is that windowsXP will not pick it up. Not even disk management will see it. I hear that Soney uses another type of formatting so we can't use the hd's after they are taken out.
True?
Well, what I need is to get it going. Anyone have the solution? Can't label it cause I can't see it, even in disk Management.
I just replaced my 40GB drive with a 320GB drive and formatted the old one to fat32. I used Paragon Hard Disk Manager. It's an older version I had and decided to try it out when Windows disk manager did not work. Paragon worked instantly. Formatted the 40GB drive in a couple of minutes. I put the 40GB drive in a Rosewill 2.5" enclosure. It's nice to have a 40GB thumb drive now ;)
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