We normally avoid any stories related to hacking but in this case, it pertains to a new firmware update for the PlayStation 3, so…

Today, Sony has announced that firmware update 3.42 is available for download, and it's strictly a security-based update. It's necessary if you wish to access the PlayStation Network and although Sony wouldn't say whether it disables the functionality of the PS Jailbreak, a spokesperson did say the update is "an overall security related issue." If you didn't know, the PS3 was hacked at the end of last month by a group calling themselves PS Jailbreak; they released a USB dongle onto the international market that lets the public mod the system, too. Basically, it lets an owner install homemade or pirated software onto the PS3's hard drive, which would negate the software disc requirement. Sales of the device were stopped in Australia, where Sony is now taking legal action but no news on what's going on concerning Sony vs. PS Jailbreak in this country. For the most part, this doesn't really affect you if you don't care about modding your console, but at least you know what update 3.42 is all about.  Good to have that info.

You just need 168MB of free space to install it, so go for it. Remember, you can't log into the PSN until you do.

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TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

I'd bet lots of money that the two events are related. It probably didn't help that someone released a 'free' version of the 'hack' that uses a USB mounted micro-controller and some software to mimick a service key.

Not sure of the specifics, but I would not be awfully surprised if Sony had changed it's entire service procedure to either remove the USB service key method, or added a secondary hardware component that can't simply be patched in by the hacking community.

Either way, as Ben says, if you want to take your PS3 online, there's zero point in trying to use one of these anyway.

What always makes me laugh is that people will try to defend these devices, but it's basically an incontrovertible fact that 99+% of the uses for a mod hip of this kind involve game piracy.

Hopefully Sony is able to lock these devices out, and maintain system and network security.

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
11 years ago

Sorta but not really off topic, I'm interested in seeing what they do for the next PSP. We all know the PSP is one of the most pirated gaming devices out there and I'm hoping Sony does something for the PSP2 because the pirating is really hurting game sales.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

PSP-3000 has no persistent CFW, whatever they did there has worked – somewhat. And I believe that the PSP-Go hasn't been cracked, probably because the Pandora battery doesn't work..

The next generation of hardware from Sony is going to be extremely hard to crack, both the PSP and PS3 have had issues with components that initiate a service mode. I'd be shocked if Sony doesn't learn more from this about how to harden that side of things.

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
11 years ago

Wait, these people try to defend the mod stuff?

Wow, talk about legality when hacking is never legal.

Cavan1
Cavan1
11 years ago

i think were in for abit of cat and mouse with this, as am sure they will try and crack the update again.

Cavan1
Cavan1
11 years ago

snake, hacking is legal, a device that you own, you can do whatever you want with it, also backing up games that you own is legal, as you own them and can do whatever you want with them, but if you borrow a game off a friend and back that up, thats illegal, or selling your backed up games, thats illegal too.

phudge_supreemz
phudge_supreemz
11 years ago

It's not illegal to hack a piece of hardware that you own. The only illegal part of it is having pirated games.

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
11 years ago

Based on what you said, what they're doing is illegal.
Yet Highlander said these people are defending it, now that's weird.

Cavan1
Cavan1
11 years ago

snake, no what there doing isnt illegal, its up to the person and how they use it, depends on how legal it is. Though as the cricket is about to start i will accept it can be a very grey area.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

In the US (as in many countries), hacking hardware is a gray area in the law because it…depends.

If you hack the software and break digital protection methods, you have broken the law as stated in the DMCA (in the US). If you manage to get into a system without hacking the software – in other words a pure hardware mod – that is technically OK according to the law as written.

It all depends on what you did and how you did it. Sony's been pretty smart with their security on the PS3 because it, in part, relies on encryption. The DMCA (IIRC) specifically prohibits breaking digital protection methods such as encryption.

But whether you legally hack a device or not, the absolutely illegal part is the software piracy that follows.

Where it gets interesting for me is in the area of what the obligations of a service provider and manufacturer are with regards to devices that have been modded or rooted (software hacked). Service providers always have the right to determine what devices have access to their network. There is no obligation to provide service to customers that make unauthorized modifications to their system. The same is true of warranties and any software support. Customers that make unauthorized modifications to their system will not receive support.

TEG3SH
TEG3SH
11 years ago

I hacked my psp just to play ffviii, but it didn't work :(.

I'm fighting cid now ops i nearly forgot to draw leviathan ( downloaded it from the PSN )

Off topic: Just finished Uncharted 2. I enjoyed it alot but does anyone else think that uncharted 1 story was a lot better ???? or is it just me !!!


Last edited by TEG3SH on 9/7/2010 12:54:48 PM

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
11 years ago

I don't get why T3G is getting downvoted. All he did was attempt to run an iso of FF7 on his PSP and we all know at the time it wasn't available on the PSP and he surely owned the PS1 version. Then he finishes by saying he downloaded FF7 when it became available.

You jerks!

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
11 years ago

Okay so it was FF8, not 7. Burn the fu#ker!

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

It's just the usual drive-by downvoting, don't pay any attention to it.

hellish_devil
hellish_devil
11 years ago

@ TEG3SH

I also like uncharted 1 more than 2. But there is only a SMALL diference in it.


Last edited by hellish_devil on 9/7/2010 3:08:18 PM

TEG3SH
TEG3SH
11 years ago

@LV ur last comment made me LOL so hard some beer came out of my noise, don't worry about the thumbs down, I'm used to them by now.

@ hellish_devil

Yeah I know but when I finished the first one, I started the crushing mode instantly. but after playing the second one, I was like ok …. i'll play it later. and the final boss on hard is really hard


Last edited by TEG3SH on 9/7/2010 6:20:12 PM

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
11 years ago

Tegesh-

I agree with you. I think Uncharted 2 was a much more technoglically better game. It is the better developed game no doubt.

But the story in Uncharted 1, having to do with Francis Drake, and him being a relative was more interesting. And the twist with the zombie type creatures was way better and much more of a surprise.

All in all both games are two fo the best games I've ever played, and I will not argue that UC2 is the all around better game. But for me the sotry had much deeper meaning in the first. Drake was basically going after something his ancestors had found. It holds a deeper meaning, and brings out The character a lot more. Buyt it also sets up the 2nd game to go in different and even more directions which it did. So Kudos to ND for creating two amazing games both with awesome stories.

TEG3SH
TEG3SH
11 years ago

@ bigrailer19
I couldn't have said it any better. totally agree

spiderboi
spiderboi
11 years ago

UC1 was great but the only peeve I have about it is that some of the enemy henchmen pop out from nowhere within caves when it was previously unexplored and you were the first to go. weird stuff.

___________
___________
11 years ago

not exactly, they have already patched the patch!
theres a new FW update for it that adds in the new FW comparability and now you no longer need the latest FW to access PSN apparently, the new update makes the ps3 think its on the latest FW when its not so no more updating required.
games though thats a whole different kettle of fish, wont be surprised to see new games requiring a yet to be released FW.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

Not quite. The majority of firmware version bypasses involve using a proxy, and it takes 30 seconds to find the proxy addresses. Want to bet whether Sony is logging the unique identifiers of every PS3 that comes from a specific IP address? The other 'bypass' seems to involve editing a specific resource file. However if the firmware contains any other checks, or methods for reporting a version number – such as responding to a particular encrypted challenge, is not yet known. Rest assured though, an enhanced firmware revision check is coming.

How do I know? There were reports recently that retailers who deal in second hand consoles were being given information on how to determine if a PS3 system is banned. That would tend to indicate that Sony was readying a wave of perma-bans based on some evidence of violating the terms of service. Evading the firmware check via a proxy would definitely qualify.

It's a game of cat and mouse, to be sure, I'm just not sure who is the cat and who is the mouse. I think that the traditional roles may be reversed in this case.

___________
___________
11 years ago

sonys the cat, they catch the mouse but every time they do just before that mouse gives birth to a new mouse.
i just hope it does not lead to anything too drastic, the last thing i want is to see more features removed because of this!
o, apparently give them 2 weeks and there will be CFW available too.
once thats out, that is when it will get interesting.
one things for sure, if you value PSN stay the hell away from this!
one thing though, do the consoles get banned or just the PSN accounts?
apparently all accounts, be it master or sub accounts get banned but the console is fine.
sony should not do that, they should just ban the whole console that way, well, 1, 2,3,4,5 systems bricked eventually people will get sick of buying new ones.
or so would one assume.
if only the accounts get banned than all they need to do is buy another one, and have one for online and one for offline.
console bans would be a much better way to go, shock and awe hit it big and hard to try and scare the sheep off.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

I'm not so sure about CFW. To do that they have to have cracked the secure processing vault, and I've never seen anything from anyone in the community that suggests that's been done.

The shame is (as I said in another post) that the more people push, the greater the push back will be. Every one of these instances enhances the security that Sony is justified in including. Every one of these breeches in security adds to the case for hardware manufacturers locking their products down.


Last edited by TheHighlander on 9/9/2010 11:41:37 AM

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

The PS Jailbreak guys claim they have a way to get around Firmware 3.42, but it's not going to be available for two weeks? I'm extremely skeptical since Sony has successfully blocked sales of the PSJailbreak device in several countries now. Besides, if they have a way around 3.42 why wait to release it?

If, and it's a big if, they patch their thing and it gets around 3.42. Then I suspect that Sony has simply blocked a specific device ID from initiating debug mode. In which case the next step will be to completely alter the way in which service mode is initiated and probably remove debug mode from the retail firmware all-together.

Like I said, the more people push, the more Sony will push back. Every time someone finds a way past the security, Sony adds a new measure to block it and has further justification for locking their platform down even more.

At the end of the day, the potential is that the innocent user suffers thanks to those who simply wish to play free games. I mean, it's not like Sony (or any other console maker) can back away from security. The platform has to remain secure to remain economical. The integration of the online components and transactions within the console software architecture mandates that the platform remain secure, So in the end Sony has no choice but to combat this every way they can.

The next time someone tries to take Sony to court over some new security feature, or because their console was banned. Sony will be able to produce lots of evidence about these various hacks and exploits that have been blocked which just makes it easier for Sony to defend actions it takes to defend it's PS3 platform.

___________
___________
11 years ago

its not out for at least 2 weeks because its in testing make sure it works properly under every possible circumstance before releasing.
they said at least 2 weeks before its ready, cant remember where it was but CFW is suppose to be on the way.
i seriously doubt it myself, thats one thing we all thought would be impossible.
but, hey we all thought getting backup games to work would be impossible, so………
as the saying goes where theres a will theres a way!

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

LOL!

Be fair, you and I both know that the only reason you can run game backups is because they cloned a service master key, booted the system into it's own debug mode, that allows you to run unsigned code, and then they cobbled together a backup manager using an unlicensed SDK.

I don't think we can fairly call it a hack when they are really simply using the console's debug mode via a stolen service key.

I was doing some reading on the topic of CFW and I don't think that will happen. I could be surprised, but the statements I was able to find from the big names in that field all point to it being impossible to access the system at the level required to do a custom FW.

From all the reading and research, the most likely way this will go is that whether or not the PS Jailbreak folks find a way past the 3.42 update by modifying the device ID of their USB key, Sony will ultimately remove debug mode from the firmware stack that is installed on retail units. I can imagine that tehy will do some other things to shore up other elements of the security. But if this continues to be a problem, Sony will effectively disable the service key/maintenance mode/Debug mode loophole by removing it completely. It will make servicing PS3s more difficult, but I believe that MS did something very similar in response to a USB based attack on their system.

Beamboom
Beamboom
11 years ago

On a slightly related note: I heard on BBC radio about a scientist that used the PS3 for scientific purposes. He'd clustered 16 ps3's running Linux to do some heavy number crunching for him, and he claimed that the processing power he gained from that was the equivalent of nearly 200 PCs (!). The story ended with him saying that it was "too bad" that Sony has disabled the possibility to run other software / OS on the system "just because of gaming", that it was such a waste of great hardware.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

The thing is, that it's not really all that clear cut that 16 PS3s have the processing power of 200 PCs, unless we're talking about Pentium 4s of course…

The researcher in question is only about a year behind the times since OtherOS was removed from production more than a year ago.

Beamboom
Beamboom
11 years ago

Yes he had 16 old ps3's running because of this removal of otheros, this is exactly what he was talking about. He said that any "old" ps3 laying around that's not upgraded has a scientific value.

This story is featured in BBC's "Digital planet" a couple of weeks ago. Available as podcast, and a great weekly show.


Last edited by Beamboom on 9/7/2010 11:11:06 AM

Beamboom
Beamboom
11 years ago

Regarding the "200 PCs", he probably compared the power with a pc with the same price tag. Then it kinda makes more sense…

NeoHumpty
NeoHumpty
11 years ago

I'm sure that Sony could build a system to spec for the right buyer that would have all that power in one box.

maxpontiac
maxpontiac
11 years ago

It's a shame that hack-jobs like the PSJailbreak have to happen. It's a freaking video game!! Play them to enjoy them.

I hope that Sony locks out the individual PS3's if something like the Jailbreak is discovered.

Temjin001
Temjin001
11 years ago

Hopefully Sony can keep the pirates at bay for some time with this firmware update.

As a gamer who gladly pays to take part in my favorite form of entertainment, I wouldn't want to hurt the market or deter the talent that brings me, and everyone else, great games.

B-RadGfromOV
B-RadGfromOV
11 years ago

You did that on purpose didn't you? "pirates at bay"

XD

Wissam
Wissam
11 years ago

Good. they made their move. I hope it works.

Cavan1
Cavan1
11 years ago

since i have a rooted android phone, i did it yesterday to see if it would work, and yes it did, i backed up uncharted and was able to play the game without it being in my system. Very impressive stuff, though i have now updated my ps3, i know there are ways to go online without updating but i dont need this back up manager, it will be used for only piracy which only hurts the devs, and we end up with less and worse games.

Soultaker
Soultaker
11 years ago

Yeah so they can still do w/e and not have to update the firmware…it's annoying they gotta do something about that going around to get online without having to update.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

A word of advice.

Remove that 'backup manager' software from your PS3. At some point Sony will start looking for the backup manager application IDs on PS3s and ban units if the use of a 'backup manager' is detected.

Cavan1
Cavan1
11 years ago

thanks highlander, first thing i did before i updated to 3.42 was worried about the new firmware checking to see if a backup manager was on, like i said i was just curious to see if it would work.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

Oh, indeed. I understand from a techie point of view you want to see if it can be done. once you've seen it, it's back to business as usual. I completely understand that, I generally feel the same way.

As soon as the open source version hit, I checked to see what it was and it's a piece of software running on a processor inside a USB stick. In other words, someone wrote a piece of software that makes the micro-controller inside the USB stick respond as if it were an authorized service key. So I'm not surprised an Android phone can do it. I am surprised that a TI-84 can do it though…LOL! That's quite a techie feather in a cap if you ask me.

The fact that Sony has blocked all of existing USB based hacks suggests that they did more than target a specific hack. I think they made a change to the entire process to initiate service mode, otherwise only the original device and direct clones would have been blocked.

It's a game of cat and mouse, but Sony has options at their disposal, such as having the system require a second hardware device connected to some other port to enable service mode. I guess it's only a matter of time before that is cracked too.

I think Sony will start varying the coding and encryption for it's service keys with each major firmware update from now on to prevent a repeat of this performance.

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
11 years ago

I kinda look forward to meeting my friends if Sony fails, among my friends here, just about everyone of them pirate games.
Especially for the PSP, they don't play through UMD, they simply download it for free and they told me I wasted my money on BlazBlue when they downloaded free on the PSP.
And I got Bayonetta they were like,"Dude, the 360 version is so much cheaper and it's the same game!!" Well I didn't really fight back cause Bayonetta was seriously inferior so all the more reason to bash me.

Now about this, a firmware should do the trick and even if it works, they can't go online.
I got friend updating his PSP and he couldn't play his pirated game software.

hobgoblin
hobgoblin
11 years ago

The one thing that gets my back-up regarding this is that despite Sony releasing a patch for the recent security issues (good thing), you still get people (so far on the EU and US forums) saying stuff like:

"such a boring update. WE WANT NEW FEATURES PLEASE"

"Yet another useless update. Bring us cross-game chat, cross-game invitation etc. and maybe more ppl would start using the PS3 for games and not just as a BR player.

It’s a good thing Microsoft knows how to do a good online experience"

and

"I wish you guys were this fast in adding features that everybody in the community wants badly then with stopping security threats."

a)the update is FREE, b) it takes what, 5 mins to download, and c) it fixes a security issue.

When JailBreak, PSGroove et al were revealed, people started speculating to if Sony would counteract with a firmware update. Now that they have, people are still complaining.

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
11 years ago

Here at PSXE, we don't do that.
Those are either trolls or whiners.

bOnEs
bOnEs
11 years ago

good… it's nice to see sony staying on top of these things… it's really a shame that people want to play free games fully realizing that by in doing so, they're hurting these very companies chances to create more games…

but, they don't give a @#$%, they just live in the moment and couldn't care less of the repercussions of their actions…


Last edited by bOnEs on 9/7/2010 11:36:39 AM

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

This is why i hate online gaming all of these stupid updates u will never see me online on my Ps3 again till the said update comes on a game disc then i will update other wise it takes me for ever for me to download it. oh how i miss the nintendo/n64 days without having to worry about updates.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

Why?

Why not update? Is having the possibility of pirating software so important to you? Sorry, but to be honest if you're already running 3.41, there is no reason to skip the 3.42 update unless you are hoping to use your PS3 for game piracy.

Anyone using OtherOS still runs 3.15, and this simply isn't an issue for them, not that they are interested in pirating games anyway, their interest is in running Linux for whatever reasons they have.

But anyone specifically ticked off by this update is objecting purely because it will prevent them from indulging in game piracy.

Simcoe
Simcoe
11 years ago

@ThEInFamOusgOd I updated this morning and, you may be surprised to read, it wasn't one of those 150 MB updates. In fact it took more time to install the update than it did to download it! So even if you have a 256kb/s or 512kb/s connection, it shouldn't take too long.

Skatejimmy5
Skatejimmy5
11 years ago

I think it's good that they try to get rid of these piracy problems, because they're really annoying and stupid. But still, a monthly firmware update is a little too often I'd say. Every three months would make more sense to me, plus they could fit more things into it.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

It's not a monthly update, there is no cycle that runs on a monthly basis. Good grief, people complain about everything. What was Sony supposed to do? Sit on the update and allow piracy, just so you wouldn't be able to complain about a monthly update?

Temjin001
Temjin001
11 years ago

I agree with Highlander, the widespread adoption of something like PS3jailbreak directly affects the health of Sony's business and profitability. I'm sure if they could released the firmware even sooner, they would have.

Besides, most any online enabled computer device has frequent security update patches, even for Mac =p