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Ps3 hardrive corrupt and fails to recover

The system does turn on but it says the system storage is corrupt abd will recover but fails to do so

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What you will need:

  1. Bad PS3 hard drive
  2. New hard drive of equal or larger size
  3. SATA to USB cable or a spare USB enclosure
  4. Copy of 'dd' for the OS of your choice
    • (Linux and OS X users should have it by default, Windows users can get it here)
  5. Time, patience, and a desire to recover your data

The process:
  1. Remove bad drive from the PS3
  2. Connect bad drive to a computer that has enough free space as the size of your drive
  3. Make a backup image using 'dd'
    • WARNING! You should be able to do this without having administrator/root/superuser rights. However, if for some reason you have to do this with admin/root/su rights, PLEASE, quadruple check what you type and make sure you have the correct paths. It is entirely possible to completely ruin a system install if you overwrite your computer's main hard drive and 'dd' will do this without blinking an eye if you tell it to.

    • The command I used was
      • dd bs=10M if=*path_to_your_ps3_hdd* of=*path_to_ps3_save*ps3_save.dd
    • Where *path_to_your_ps3_hdd* is the full path to the bad drive and *path_to_ps3_save* is the full path to where you want the backup image to be stored.

    • For example, I would've used
      • dd bs=10M if=/dev/sdb of=~/OMGPLZWORK/ps3_save.dd
    • As a Linux user "/dev/sdb" was the path to the bad drive when connected via the USB adapter and "~/OMGPLZWORK/" was the path to where I wanted to save the image.
    • Note that you DO NOT want to specify a partition number (/dev/sdb1) as you want to image the whole drive. There probably won't be a partition number, but just in case.

    • If you are a Windows user the command would look something like this
      • dd bs=10M if=\\.\e: of=c:\OMGPLZWORK\ps3_save.dd
    • Note that dd for windows requires "\\.\" before the drive letter.
    • Please read the "dd for windows" website if you are at all confused.

    • And for OS X users it would be something like this
      • dd bs=10M if=/dev/disk2 of=~/OMGPLZWORK/ps3_save.dd
    • As with Linux, you DO NOT want to specify a partition number (/dev/disk2s1) if there is one.
    • Note: '~' is a shortcut to your home directory.

    • Linux and OS X users (and I suppose Windows users too, if you wanted to install gzip, but I won't cover that) can use a variant of that command that will compress the image as it's created
      • dd bs=10M if=*path_to_your_ps3_hdd* ' gzip -9 > *path_to_ps3_save*ps3_save.gz
    • This will not compress the image much, as it will only compress free space on the drive, but it took my 320 gigabyte drive to around 260 gigabytes.
  4. Connect new drive to the same computer
  5. Restore image using 'dd'
    • The command to use is
      • dd bs=10M of=*path_to_your_ps3_hdd* if=*path_to_ps3_save*ps3_save.dd
    • or if you chose to compress the image
      • gunzip -c *path_to_ps3_save*ps3_save.gz ' dd bs=10M of=*path_to_your_ps3_hdd*
  6. Install new drive into the PS3
  7. Boot up the PS3 and let it attempt to restore
Note: If you have the available hardware, there's no reason you couldn't just 'dd' the data from the bad drive directly to the new drive.If you wanted to do that the command would be
  • dd bs=10M if=*path_to_your_bad_ps3_hdd* of=*path_to_your_good_ps3_hdd*
For example
  • dd bs=10M if=/dev/sdb of=/dev/sdc
If you choose to do this, you run the risk of writing the new drive over your bad drive if you have a typo (even if you're not running with admin/root/su rights!), so quadruple check the command and paths before executing.

If all goes well your PS3 should be back up and running with little data loss. However there is NO guarantee that this will work for you. If you're like me, though, it's worth a shot and you never know, it just might work.

Posted on Nov 21, 2013

  • 1 more comment 
  • Zach Hagen
    Zach Hagen Nov 21, 2013

    Here is an easier way

  • Zach Hagen
    Zach Hagen Nov 21, 2013

    Here is an easier way

  • Zach Hagen
    Zach Hagen Nov 21, 2013

    Add a CommentA hard drive is made up of sectors. Generally, hard drives have 512 bytes per sector, or about 2,000,000 sectors per gigabyte. However, if even a single sector is damaged, the entire hard drive becomes unreadable, even though the data is still there. I removed my PS3 hard drive and plugged it into my PC. I looked at various software, designed to do different things. I tried a few of these, but to no avail. I was beginning to accept that all of my data was truly gone. But then I tried a program called HDD Regenerator. HDD Regenerator is designed to repair hard drives, by repairing damaged sectors. The program will scan your hard drive, and point out and restore any damaged sectors. If you're lucky, there will be only 1 damaged sector. Meaning you can fix your hard drive using the free trial version of the software. However, if you are in the same pickle that I was, with 2 or more damaged sectors (My hard drive had 3 damaged sectors), you will have to pay the eye-watering price of $100 for the full version.


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How to Access Playstation Recovery Menu

1. Turn off Playstation®3.

2. Hold The power button down; The system will turn on and turn off once again.

3. Once the System has been shutdown, re-press you finger until you hear 2 consecutive beeps

4. When you hear the 2 beeps take finger off power button.

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try the steps below. Its from PlayStation Forum:

1. Turn off Playstation®3.
2. Hold the power button down; the system will turn on and turn off once again.
3. Once the System has been shutdown, re-press you finger until you hear 2 consecutive beeps
4. When you hear the 2 beeps take finger off power button.
5. You will be prompted to plug in your controller via USB and then hit the PS button
6. The Recovery menu will pop up.

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• Restore File System: Checks for corrupt/missing system files.
• Rebuild Database: Rebuilds the OS for the PLAYSTATION®3.
• Restore PS3 System: Fresh restore; Deletes everything and starts from Scratch.
• System Update: Update the PLAYSTATION®3 System

If the above steps still does not solve the problem, then I think will have to update your Ps3.

Update your PS3 (in the settings menu the 1st option).

Go on the internet browser on the PS3 then go on the menu press triangle then on one of them there are delete cookies and the delete the others as well as cookies.

You could also try this as well: put the PS3 on then press the eject button (with no disc in) then hold it and switch the PS3 off at the back with your finger on the eject button still holding it, then put it back on and the fan test should be working this may cool it down. It might be over heating.

If after trying the above options and it still does not solve the problem, then maybe the lens is weak and that's why it cannot read any disc.

But if your problem is not still solved, then maybe you should call sony for further assistance.

Good luck.

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I would recommend buying a 2.5in SATA hardrive - they're very cheap. Ask in store for one, or you can get one from If that doesn't work, it's a problem with the PS3 itself and you should phone Sony.

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