• PS3 Hacks, PS3 Linux , 07.03.2013

    jeff_rigby from neogaf has posted some interesting links and information about a possible OtherOS comeback with the Release of the PS4. Here is the full post:

    DTCP-IP was supposed to come with firmware update 3.0 and the PS3 Slim was released without Linux. With Firmware 3.21 Other OS Linux support was removed from the PS3 and DTCP-IP was implemented. The playstation blog stated this was to have a more secure system. androvsky found a post pre-Firmware 3.0 that predicted most of the firmware 3.0 features and also claimed DTCP-IP was coming with firmware 3.0…..it didn’t until firmware 3.21 a few months later. 

    The reason for Other OS Linux removal was likely as stated (Security) but for streaming IPTV security (On-line and in the home) which was the thrust of firmware 3.0 - 3.50. Firmware 3.50 - 4.31 and higher is for the HTML5 webkit2 browser as webkit is a work in progress. Still missing is DASH HTML5 IPTV streaming with Google/Microsoft/Netflix sponsored DRM using Microsoft’s Playready DRM which Sony has already announced they will be using. This likely signals a change in the DRM and Player currently being used for adaptive streaming. Somewhere near or with PS3 firmware 3.5,AVM+ (Adobe Flash Free for non-commercial use) was implemented and the PS3 started using Flash adaptive streaming with the same standards seen in Flash server 3.5.

    Note: There was a discussion on BY3D about the adaptive IPTV player being used by Sony and one of my finds was AVM+ (free from Adobe for non commercial use and supported by Mozilla) and the Flash server 3.5 standards matched Sony statements about soon to come features in EU IPTV apps (Confirmed in the PS3 about menu under settings). Lots of criticism on BY3D about this and I then found the Sony SNAP site that was using Gstreamer and assumed that was the adaptive player being used; this may still happen but was 3 years premature (Gstreamer is the standard player in Firefox, Opera, GTKwebkit, Sony SNAP and in multiple Sony TVs).

    DTCP-IP is used to encrypt IPTV streams from a DLNA server in the home to the PS3 and other platforms. RVU is a standard which requires a slightly modified version of DLNA + DTCP-IP + HTML5 for the UI that is now accepted as part of DLNA. RVU (remote View) allows control of Cable box DVR boxes and streaming the content in the box or using the tuners for live play. Plans are to use DLNA for Tru2way, RVU with DVR box or cable box 2 way communication with a head end box that may just contains tuners and no recording ability and/or to support “clear” unencrypted cable and OTA RVU. Silicon dust has a tuner that can accept a cable card and serve DLNA-RVU for both OTA and Cable. Speculation is it should work with the PS3 now or soon with a PS3 DLNA upgrade.

    The PS4 is going to have a ARM CPU to support “Trustzone” and it appears the codec accelerators in the PS4 are designed to work with the background ARM CPU which I assume is part of TRUSTZONE. DTCP-IP should be more secure and Linux not an issue with Security for the PS4.

    Accelerated Webkit (GPU) composting is now supported on the Vita but the PS3 webkit has not been updated to support GPU acceleration. (Both the Vita and PS3 use the same GTKwebkit2 APIs and got webkit updates at nearly the same time until the latest Vita browser update.) 

    Vista windows and I think Microsoft Windows OS after Vista use the GPU as a choke point for DRM security as all Video has to go through the GPU. This is the reason for a number of issues; 1) Microsoft stating WebGL which gives access to the GPU as a security issue, 2) Open Source Linux GPU Drivers releases are slow or non-existent and as a result Linux is considered not secure for DRM if there is a Open source GPU driver, 3) Sony did not give access to the GPU for PS3 Other OS Linux for security reasons and to this point the PS3 has no GPU acceleration support for the Webkit2 browser.

    So Linux support from the above could come to the PS4 but Sony needs to find a way to secure IPTV streaming in all it’s forms on the PS3 that doesn’t require the GPU as a choke point and/or insure WebGL and webkit GPU acceleration is secure. This is all speculation on my part and the cite I found seems to indicate that Sony has found a way to secure IPTV streaming on the PS3. This has likely been a major project for Sony since the PS3 was hacked. At the present time all secure IPTV streaming requires a reboot to insure a clean PS3 and full RUN support by the application rather than relying 100% on the PS3 software stack.

    Insiders from Sony say they have introduced a customized kernel version rather than using the basic kernel to support this feature. This customized kernel may support specific versions of Linux only as a part of beta testing. Subsequently Sony will enable all version support after successful completion of beta testing.
    But this time Sony is confident that they won’t block this feature, and that they have an alternative to block the security threats. 
    An inside source also says Sony’s firmware upgrade during the release of PlayStation 4 will re-enable the other OS support in PlayStation 3 as well. So it’s good news for PlayStation 3 owners too after suffering for couple of years. Moreover it’s believed to be a gamble to boost PlayStation 4 sales.

    If RVU support is coming for the PS3 and Webkit is to get accelerated (GPU) composting then Sony likely has an answer that would allow Other OS Linux for the PS3.

    Job posting and posts indicating the PS3 and other platforms will be using WebMAF and Playready DRM.

    PS3 (likely not a production firmware) supporting RVU in 2010

    Job postings “Heavy single page HTML5 media apps”

    More job postings for HTML5 apps using OpenGL or similar

    If you look at the Playstation Store using HTML5 and the PS4 screenshots of the social features they appear similar. My speculation late 2010 was that the PS3 would eventually have a browser (HTML5) desktop and of course future Game consoles like the PS4 also. To this point the PS3 only partially supports a browser desktop and the last part, OpenGL ES support for the XMB to support Cairo, (currently uses XML using OpenVG which is a subset of Cairo that does not require OpenGLES) is still to come likely with webkit GPU acceleration. RVU uses HTML5 for the Menu UI and XTV will likely use HTML5 and Java or Java and XHTML 4.01 (without javascript using XML supported by OpenVG)

    HDMI CEC may be used to control the Tru2way cable box connected to the Xbox 720 or PS4 HDMI IN port. Via RVU over the home network the control is via a new DLNA standard.

    Originally Posted by http://forum.beyond3d.com/showpost.php?p=1716237&postcount=968:
    This is the HDMI CEC standard: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HDMI#CEC
    The most interesting IMO parts are the tuner control, I guess that means that the Xbox ought to be able to tell the cable device to switch to X channel. There is also one touch play, one touch record, volume, time record etc. I would say that an Xbox with inline HDMI (HDMI pass-thru) ought to be able to tell the cable box to record X program, or switch to Y channel at a set time and record X program and directly play any stored information on the device. I don’t think there are too many cable companies/satellite companies so as a standard it ought to be workable with the most common dozen or so devices.


    Same applies to the PS4.

    Version 2.0
    The HDMI Forum is working on the HDMI 2.0 specification.[151][152] In a 2012 CES press release HDMI Licensing, LLC stated that the expected release date for the next version of HDMI was the second half of 2012 and that important improvements needed for HDMI include increased bandwidth to allow for higher resolutions and broader video timing support.[153] Longer term goals for HDMI include better support for mobile devices and improved control functions.[153]
    On January 8, 2013, HDMI Licensing, LLC announced that the next HDMI version is being worked on by the 83 members of the HDMI Forum and that it is expected to be released in the first half of 2013.[12][13][14]
    Based on HDMI Forum meetings it is expected that HDMI 2.0 will increase the maximum TMDS per channel throughput from 3.4 Gbit/s to 6 Gbit/s which would allow a maximum total TMDS throughput of 18 Gbit/s.[154][155] This will allow HDMI 2.0 to support 4K resolution at 60 frames per second (fps).[154] Other features that are expected for HDMI 2.0 include support for 4:2:0 chroma subsampling, support for 25 fps 3D formats, improved 3D capability, support for more than 8 channels of audio, support for the HE-AAC and DRA audio standards, dynamic auto lip-sync, and additional CEC functions.[154] The Sony PlayStation 4 will utilize this standard.


    Provided an implementation for Tru2Way APIs for HDMI CEC messages This in 2009 and plans were at that time to support CEC on Tru2way boxes. Panasonic and Comcast are working to integrate HDMI-CEC technology with tru2way enabled set-top boxes.

    Samsung Tru2way set top boxes for Cable and Satellite without CEC.

    Cisco Tru2way set top box with CEC support. So some are supporting CEC over HDMI.

    Turn your TV into a smart TV with a $100 USB stick that plugs into the HDMI and USB port on a TV.

    Product INFO sheets started listing Tru2way boxes Oct-Nov 2012. 

    OpenCable™ OCAP 1.2.2 Reference Implementation Release Candidate-F Release Notes 9/2012 mention testing with the PS3

    Linux build environment for OCAP Includes Cairo-Pango, XML2, jpeg, Java and more. I.E. it’s a XHTML + Java implementation that is already in the PS3 (except for pango).

    Source: NeoGAF

    Discuss in Forums (12)


    1. BEnemy
      01:17 PM

      Wonder how long till they give us the option psn or other os.

    2. cloudx
      01:54 PM

      And then a few months they will remove it lol.

      01:59 PM

      I highly doubt it.

      Sony only take and take and take away, they never give back.

    4. tech3475
      02:14 PM

      I would be very very surprised if Sony return OOS at this stage, not only will they probably consider it a security risk (despite it going to do sweet FA by now) but they probably wont want to support the phat models in any way unless they port it which again I doubt.

      That said I would love to see it's official return.

    5. OoZic
      02:20 PM

      Again, wrong time line..... removal of OtherOS was decided long before the PS3 was hacked, that is why the Slim didn't have it. It was all about money, cutting costs by firing the OtherOS developer team was the main reason. And now with the war for the next gen console and the cost price of it they will hire an OtherOS team again? Nope, don't think so....

    6. SuperDre
      03:01 PM

      this is a BS story... as said above, the reason had to do with money, not the cost of the OtherOS team, but because IBM strongly suggested Sony into removing it (at the time sony was still selling the PS3 with a big loss) because universities and companies (hell even the airforce) were buying PS3's instead of much more expensive dedicated cell servers (which was also a big loss for Sony as those people wouldn't buy any games)..

    7. potlick
      05:22 PM

      lol this is a sales marketing crap. gather the sheeps then skin em. whos gonna take the bait? FU SOny. this is a joke just like sony.

    8. Isleofdoom
      06:25 PM

      Are they seriously that dumb to add it again n risk security for there newest console right at startup somehow I doubt it will see the light of day. I love linux n what it can do but you think by tellin ppl this they will believe after it was removed. Yea leave the door open for another attack. Money making and make ppl believe what you Dnt plan to keep

    9. NTA
      09:03 PM

      hey if they want to give the communities some loopholes to exploit, i'm all for it

    10. romul
      10:34 PM

      if will be other os i will play in emulators until hack ps4
      like on ps3 in first 3 years
      Emulation on the Playstation 3 made easy with The Zerogame Project 0.50 (phat only) - YouTube

    11. arwynj55
      05:48 AM

      you never know... sony might be testing the cfw devs :P

    12. jeff_rigby
      08:53 AM

      I mentioned that Playready was going to be used by Sony for the PS3 and I now have more information.

      Playready appears to be the standard that will be used for HTML5 <video> DRM , at least the APIs that Microsoft-Netflix-Google submitted to the W3C. More importantly it will be the standard for DLNA-RVU and used by everyone to stream IPTV from Cable Gateway DLNA-RVU servers which is mandated for cable companies June 2014. Playready has a Revocation ability when connected on-line...Microsoft, when your PS3 is connected on-line and you get the current license keys to stream DRM media, can detect if you have tampered with playready and can revoke features in your PS3. Since everyone is using playready this eliminates security issues for the PS3. Key is everyone is using Playready and Revocation.

      Back to the cite that supports this:

      PS4 rumored to have other OS Linux support and at PS4 release a firmware update to the PS3 will enable Other OS Linux support.

      Insiders from Sony say they have introduced a customized kernel version rather than using the basic kernel to support this feature. This customized kernel may support specific versions of Linux only as a part of beta testing. Subsequently Sony will enable all version support after successful completion of beta testing.

      But this time Sony is confident that they won�t block this feature, and that they have an alternative to block the security threats.

      An inside source also says Sony�s firmware upgrade during the release of PlayStation 4 will re-enable the other OS support in PlayStation 3 as well. So it�s good news for PlayStation 3 owners too after suffering for couple of years. Moreover it�s believed to be a gamble to boost PlayStation 4 sales.
      Playready reached version 1.0 Sept 2013 just before the PS4 release. The quote is timing the release of Other OS Linux for the PS3 to the PS4 release and Microsoft apparently timed Playready to be ready just before needed for the PS4 and XB1. Playready is the mentioned in the quote above alternative to block security threats.

      Conditions met to eliminate security threats to streaming IPTV which is the endgame goal for the PS3....the FCC Mandate. It's now up to Sony management, do they still plan to do this and what benefit do they derive?