It is not yet determined if these issues are related to the PS3 Firmware Patches Sony instituted beginning with PlayStation 3 Firmware update version 3.41, however, there is currently a lengthy thread on Sony's official board covering the issues.
To summarize, quoting from http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-12218-Video-Game-Examiner~y2010m7d29-Firmware-341-Causing-Problems-to-HDD-Upgraders: "The problems being reported are the following: PS3 owners are unable to update their system to firmware 3.41, HDD upgrades aren't being allowed, systems are crashing, and after installing a new HDD the system isn't fully downloading the file and then prompts users with a message stating 'no applicable data found'."
Sony did respond to online inquiries regarding this topic with this response:
"We apologize for any inconvenience you are experiencing with upgrading Internal Hard Disc Drive (for PlayStation 3) on your PlayStation(R)3 computer entertainment system. The information available to our Consumer Services Department does not suggest that this is a problem PlayStation(R) owners are likely to experience when upgrading the HDD with 3.41 update. Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) strongly supports the quality of its products and backs them with full confidence."
Sony is currently recommending affected users update their previous PS3 HDD first to see if the update works with it, followed by updating from a thumb drive formatted in FAT 32 with the 3.41 PS3 update.
If anyone here is experiencing similar issues, feel free to reply in the comments below.
The thing is, some who have upgraded their hard drive have reported updating to 3.41 without issue... so like most new PS3 Firmware releases it appears the problems are isolated to specific users or configurations at this time.
Buddy of mine mentioned he is having a lot of game freezes with Tomb Raider Underworld and Medal of Honer Beta. More so than before. As well, I have had numerous lockups with Socom and weird texture pop-ins on character models in Red Dead.
Could just be games glitching out like they do, but it seemed more noticeable in the last few days, before this issue was posted.
Both systems are fat with upgraded hard drives, both a couple years old.
Right when I was contemplating changing my old 40GB HDD (to a high capacity 7200RPM one) the console freezes for the first time during gameplay (complete freeze, likely headed for a YLOD) and now this happens. I've been hanging onto firmware 3.15 forever now thanks to that jerkoff Egohot. I just can't win.
I have an 80GB fat PS3 and been having freezing problems since 3.40 update. After 5 minutes playing the sound or background music disappears and in the following loading screen the games freeze. A friend of mine had the same problem with his 60GB PS. Those useless updates are destroying every fat PS3. Looks like sony is making this on purpose.