Windows cannot be installed. Linux can be. Windows would need to modified in order to run. This is because Windows require an NTFS Formatted HDD to install and boot from. Without this, Windows is not usable (nor will it install).
That's right: Windows cannot be installed on the PS3, but that's not exactly the right reason.
The real reason why you can't install Windows on a PS3 is because Windows is compiled as Intel x86 (1) architecture and you don't have the source code to compile it to Power architecture (which is what the PS3 Cell processor is based on) like you can do with Linux. If you had the source code, or if Microsoft released it to the Power architecture, in theory you could run it on the PS3 (provided you also had the correct drivers, or if they already came with that hypothetical version of Windows).
(1) Note: be it manufactured by Intel or AMD, the bytecode is mostly the same and compatible; be it 32 or 64 bit: in this case the bytecode isn't the same and that's why you have 2 versions on recent Windows versions, although under 64 bit OS there is something like a "compatibility mode" to run 32 bit applications. As another side note, Windows 8 is also available for the ARM architecture and that's what you have today on Windows 8 phones and tablets - but the exact same applications aren't compatible for similar reasons as the stated above.
If not, then take a look at the Linux native filesystems (ext3, ext4, reiserfs or xfs): like NTFS, they also aren't also supported by the PS3 OS, but Linux runs on it. What counts is the operating system kernel and the Linux one supports many other filesystems. With an interesting feature called FUSE you can even write userspace filesystem drivers to support any filesystem without having to recompile the kernel itself (this is how currently Linux supports NTFS, and it's quite stable for reading and writing). BTW, you can run Windows (at least until XP) in FAT32 formatted partitions.
Source? Years of experience on the field, but you can Google around or find some books on the subject and see that I'm right
In some cases you can just resign the (fixed) eboot files with recent resigning applications, even if you resign them with 3.55 keys they will work.
The problem is that old eboots weren't being 100% correctly (re)signed as some fields still had references to other firmware versions and in firmware versions > 3.60 Sony added a check on that fields to distinguish what was "legit" and what was "pirated" or "unlicensed", throwing an hex code if you ever tried to run them.
In 4.xx firmwares the trouble to remove those checks would cause so many other problems or incompatibilities that no one making custom 4.xx firmwares went on to try to remove them. But if you use recent versions of resigning apps, the eboots will be signed with every field corrected and will run without problems on 4.xx, even if using 3.55 keys.
For disc-based "fixed" game eboots, recent versions of Multiman can detect and ask if you want to rewrite the correct EBOOT fields, which works in most cases. For "fixed" PSN games or homebrew, you can just search around for eboot resigner applications or redownload the fixed versions that are available in lots of sites, including some good threads here at PS3 News.
Yeah, since the architecture is the same as Intel x86_64 (or mostly) in theory it might be possible to have a Windows OS on next-gen consoles.
As I stated, the NTFS filesystem wouldn't be a problem even if it's not supported by the PS4 OS, as long as there is some way to boot the windows kernel (like as what PS3 Other OS does - it reserves a section for storing the kboot loader, which is basically a tiny kernel that then loads the full kernel on the filesystem, and it this later one what mounts the root filesystem after booting, proceeding to start udev, services and so on).
But even so, the windows kernel might have to be modded to support basic operation on the PS4, and perhaps the effort of writing drivers for the OS to access most of the hardware that is not "PC" standard (not only graphics, but the bus itself and who knows what else) might not be worth the trouble, or maybe no one will do it for free... let's wait and see if something like this ever reaches the light of day, it would be fun
BTW, I forgot to mention one thing: you should be able to run a Windows OS (at least something older) on the PS3 on top of Linux using something like bochs (a x86 platform emulator fully written in software). I think I read something some years ago about someone having achieved it, but it was too slow to do anything useful
Don't know if it was true or not, never cared to check (heck, I even gave up using Linux on the PS3 as my cheap PC ran Linux much faster, but I never tried OtherOS++ which seems to me has no restrictions like the Sony OtherOS so I don't know how fast and what kind of acceleration you can have these days with Linux on PS3).
Hey all thanks for stopping by... Here is my dilemma:
I am on Rebug 4.41. Got the 120GB slim model. I have an external which is fine but I grabbed The Last Of Us the other day and can't copy it to my external cause there is a file thats too big for FAT32 file system. I am in a dilemma... I am trying to figure out where to copy the game too.
I can ftp into my ps3 with filezilla however I have 2 games folder...One is called GAMES and the other is GAMEZ. Where should I copy the game to? Also how much hard drive space do some of you have in your PS3? I have debated on upgrading the internal drive to something a little bigger so I can put more games on there but right now I only 36 gig left... Anyone have any idea as to what to delete to free up some space?