There are several things that can cause a PS3 hard drive to fail, including turning the system off while it is trying to access the hard drive or shutting the PS3 off while it is running an update. Regardless of the cause, however, fixing the issue oneself can save a lot of money.
When the hard drive is corrupted, the system usually runs slowly or not at all and displays error messages. Rather than shipping their PS3 back to Sony for repairs, there are some ways to restore a PS3 hard drive at home. Doing this usually fixes the problems and if done regularly, the process can even prevent future issues.
Like the hard drive in a regular computer, the one in the PS3 is just as susceptible to fragmentation and errors caused by installing and uninstalling programs, unexpected shut downs, and crashed games. Luckily, Sony built the PS3 with the ability to fix these problems. Users have two options; they can restore the PS3 hard drive or rebuild the database. Rebuilding the database defragments the drive and fixes glitches without the loss of any data. Doing this usually speeds up the system and eliminates freezing and glitches. Those experiencing any problems should start with this step first.
Start by turning off the PS3 system. When off, the red indicator light should come on. Next, hold down the power button until the PS3 turns on and then turns back off again. When it is off for the second time, let go of the power button and then press it it again to turn it back on. Keep holding the button in. The PS3 should beep once, then beep again, then beep twice in a row. Listen for those two beeps and then release the power button. This should bring up the system recovery menu.
Select the option to rebuild the database. Be aware that rebuilding the database does not delete any saved files, but it does delete messages as well as music playlists. It is always a good idea to backup the PS3 before doing this just in case. After completing the process, restart the PS3 and see how it runs.
If the initial problem persists, then it is time to try to restore the PS3 hard drive. This completely wipes the hard drive clean which means that any data stored on the PS3 is lost. Be sure to backup any data before doing this. To restore the PS3 hard drive, follow the previous directions to get to the system recovery menu. This time, select the option to restore the hard drive rather than rebuild it. Once users do this, they have to set up the PS3 all over again as if they had just bought it.
If restoring the PS3 hard drive does not work, then the hard drive may be corrupted and shoppers must purchase a new one. Luckily, Sony used a standard hard drive in their system so it is easy to simply replace it with a new one.
Shop for a SATA 2.5 hard disk drive with the amount of storage space desired. For best results, look for one with at least 300 GB, but some experts recommend at least 500 GB. Before completing the purchase, just double check to make sure that the particular hard drive is compatible with the PS3.
To begin, take the plastic side panel off of the PS3 and then remove the big blue screw. After that, pull on the metal clip to remove the hard drive case. The old drive sits inside a case with four screws securing it in place. Remove the four screws and then extract the old drive. Put in the new hard drive and replace the screws. Next, put the case back inside the PS3 and put the blue screw and plastic panel back in place.
Lastly, turn the PS3 on. A message should appear which says that the PS3 software cannot be run correctly. Simply plug in the thumb drive with the system software on it. The PS3 then guides the user through the setup process.
A PS3 can provide you with hours of fun and entertainment, but when it does not work right it is just a big source of irritation. There are many issues that could cause a hard drive to crash or not work right and sending the PS3 back to the manufacturer can cost a lot. It is much more cost effective for you to try and fix the problem yourself. If restoring the drive does not work, you can shop on eBay to find a newSATA 2.5 drive. Start by looking on the eBay Deals page to see if there are any sales available. If not, use the eBay search bar to pull up a list of hard drives.