In an article at IBM.com (linked above) titled 'PS3 is more than a Toy', Peter Seebach talks us through how to tweak Linux for the best possible performance on the PS3.
To quote: The Sony PlayStation 3 (PS3) runs Linux, but getting it to run well requires some tweaking. In this article, first in a series, Peter Seebach introduces the features and benefits of PS3 Linux, and explains some of the issues that might benefit from a bit of tweaking.
When Sony first announced that the PlayStation 3 would be able to run Linux natively, a great deal of excitement ensued. Early on, it was a bit of a challenge to get Linux natively installed. The supported installer ran a custom script that hand-mangled a Fedora Core 5 or 6 install DVD into a runnable system with a special PS3 kernel. People put in hours and hours of effort to get other systems, such as Ubuntu, working. Terrasoft's Yellow Dog Linux, with an actual graphical installer that ran on the PS3, was the king of the hill.
Time has passed, and a great deal has changed. Fedora 7 installs on the PS3 out of the box, with the most challenging parts being selecting the PS3 storage driver so it can find the install DVD, and remembering to specify a video mode on the initial install command line so you'll be able to see the installer.
So, you can run Linux on the PS3. It's easy. The problem is, it doesn't necessarily run well. If you picked the PS3 up as a cheap Cell development system, it's a little frustrating to discover that, having followed the default install procedure, you have a system that comes up with a hundred megs or more of swap in use by the time you get to a shell prompt.