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Petitboot Bootloader (OS Selector) Updated for PS3 Linux

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297w ago - Petitboot is a graphical bootloader for the PlayStation 3. In 2007 the initial Petitboot Bootloader for PS3 was released.

In 2008 the [Register or Login to view links] Benjamin Herrenschmidt and Jeremy Kerr updated it to v0.2 (rename to otheros.bld to install) which is available here:

Download: [Register or Login to view links] / [Register or Login to view links]

Recently Sony's own PS3 Dev Geoffrey Levand has been updating it (linked above) further, with today's build available below:

Download: [Register or Login to view links]

Installing Petitboot
1. Put your otheros.bld file on to a USB disk, in a file called /PS3/otheros/otheros.bld. Assuming your USB disk is mounted at /media/usbdisk:

[jk@pokey ~]$ mkdir -p /media/usbdisk/PS3/otheros
[jk@pokey ~]$ cp otheros.bld /media/usbdisk/PS3/otheros/

If you don't have a USB disk, you can use any sort of media that the PS3 can read - CDROM, DVD, compact flash, etc. Just make sure that the file is called /PS3/otheros/otheros.bld.

2. Plug the USB disk into your PS3, and navigate to System -> System Settings -> Install Other OS. The PS3 should find the new file on the USB disk, and install it.

3. To boot with petitboot, just set your default operating system to "Other OS" (System -> System Settings -> Set Default OS), and reboot.

Using Petitboot
When petitboot starts, it will try to find existing Linux installations, by looking for /etc/kboot.conf, /etc/yaboot.conf or /boot/petitboot.conf files on any storage device connected to the system. Each discovered device will appear on the left-hand pane of the screen, and bootable options appear on the right.

You can navigate the boot options with the arrow keys (if you have a USB keyboard connected), or the D-Pad on the PS3 controller. If you're using a PS3 controller, you will need to have it connected via the cable; wireless controllers aren't supported (yet!).

If you only have a blank screen with no device icons, then petitboot has not found any bootable options. You can flip to a text console (using Alt+F1) to investigate.

The keys available are pictured below.

Petitboot Console
If you're using the petitboot console (either by hitting Alt+F1, or logging-in over the network), you have a fairly standard Linux system available. Some notes:

Discovered storage devices are mounted under /var/tmp/mnt, named by their device. For example, /dev/ps3da1 is mounted at /var/tmp/mnt/ps3da1.

To boot a kernel, use kexec: kexec -f --append="root=/dev/ps3da1" /var/tmp/mnt/ps3da1/boot/vmlinux .

Reverting to the Standard PS3 Software
If you'd like to revert to the standard PS3 behaviour (ie, the PS3 boots directly to gameos), then you can just do a reset of the PS3:

1. Turn the ps3 off
2. Hold down the power button until you get a second set of beeps

The ps3 boot sequence will now be back at the factory default.

Stay tuned for more PS3 Hacks and PS3 CFW news, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and drop by the PS3 Hacks and PS3 Custom Firmware Forums for the latest PlayStation 3 scene and PlayStation 4 scene updates and fresh homebrew PS3 Downloads. Enjoy!

Comments 14 Comments - Go to Forum Thread »

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#14 - jabberosx - 273w ago
jabberosx's Avatar
I use pdaXrom-NG Bootloader.. had better luck on it than petit for some reason. And also the fact that its updated more recently than petit may make a difference.

#13 - CompTronicsTec - 279w ago
CompTronicsTec's Avatar
I was actually pleasantly surprised with Petitboot. Worked for me with 0 configuration, recognized ubuntu on a usb drive, a live cd, and on the internal hdd.

It had options for easily changing the screen resolution or booting to XMB.

I liked that it was not only graphical in nature but professional looking. I actually contacted one of the devs via email to see if they planned on making petitboot for the PC, thats how much i liked it.

Im not sure which version i am using, but if you run even one linux distro on the PS3 its a must...will make booting and getting back to xmb that much easier.

#12 - Se7enLC - 279w ago
Se7enLC's Avatar
Anybody know why this is? Both the graphical version and the text-only version work fine for selecting a boot config and booting, but neither one is honoring the timeout= option. Anybody using this bootloader or have a suggestion for an alternative one that will work? Thanks.

#11 - dezza - 291w ago
dezza's Avatar
Most Linux distributions / ISO's won't boot because of incompatibility in latest firmwares ..

It has nothing to do with petitboot being a "BAD" bootloader, because it's somehow similar to kboot and the others.

All discs I've had to boot in kboot works in petitboot also and I think kboot is superior by far because it's not that heavy ..

#10 - rottenrotten - 291w ago
rottenrotten's Avatar
Last release not work for me..

#9 - xaxaxe - 291w ago
xaxaxe's Avatar
Quote Originally Posted by dezza View Post
It works fine if you configure it correctly, I installed Petitboot on several PS3s if you feel like it is getting stuck in some areas, don't go there.

It's not about the configuration (yaboot.conf kboot.conf pettitboot.conf) it'a bout the "program" itself

Randomly, my internal HDD is not detected, my external USB HDD as well. Not to mention the occasional system lockup during Boot-Game-OS.

#8 - dezza - 292w ago
dezza's Avatar
Quote Originally Posted by black10693 View Post
this should cost $15 to download because of ease of use.

You cannot say such a thing, the only thing I would consider is to choose another, there are plenty of sourcecodes to modify and create a new bootloader instantly ..

But PayPal's got donation buttons, that is fair ..

#7 - black10693 - 292w ago
black10693's Avatar
WOW, this bootloader is simply amazing, I tried it and it worked fine, but still a little unstable, but I wouldn't recomend using it until it has most of the bugs worked out. When the major bugs are gone this should cost $15 to download because of ease of use.

#6 - dezza - 292w ago
dezza's Avatar
Quote Originally Posted by xaxaxe View Post
To start with all the GUI bootloaders for PS3 I've tried are NOT stable.

It works fine if you configure it correctly, I installed Petitboot on several PS3s if you feel like it is getting stuck in some areas, don't go there.

#5 - DaxterFellowes - 296w ago
DaxterFellowes's Avatar
I see in the screen shot they have MythTV partitioned out. Any reason for this exactly? Wihout a TV tuner I don't see why it would be remotely helpful.


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