My PS3 just broke – firmware 2.42 to blame?

PS3 2.42 - Buggy firmware may kill your PS3

PS3 2.42 - Buggy firmware may kill your PS3

If you are reading this and you haven’t upgraded your PS3 firmware to 2.42, then please no matter what you do, do not upgrade to version 2.42. In fact, it’s probably a good idea to keep your PS3 at 2.35 if you can.

Update: There are many causes of this problem (for example, Blu-ray laser problem), and it may or may not be related to fw 2.42, but for some reason, the number of reports of this problem has increased after 2.42, so the firmware must be doing something. It’s possible that the firmware isn’t the cause of all this, and it may all just be a coincidence. Regardless, the best course of action is probably to contact Sony tech support instead of waiting for a firmware fix, especially if your warranty is running out shortly.

Just after 2.42 became available, there were reports that it started causing all sorts of problems, mostly disc reading related problems. Like most people, I didn’t pay too much attention to it. Firmware updates always cause problems for the minority of users. But the reports of the problem grew in number every day, and despite the same old defence of Sony fanboys, accusing users having the problem of exaggerating the claims and not knowing how to take care of their PS3, it was soon pretty obvious that the problem was somehow related to the 2.42 firmware. Or that whatever hardware problem that was around before 2.42, has decided to show up in force just around the time 2.42 was released – perhaps just a coincidence.

Now I had already updated to the 2.42 version before these reports were widespread, and like most users, I didn’t pay too much attention to it. My PS3 was still working, although I don’t use it very often (only for DVDs and Blu-ray). It was still working perfectly 2 days ago.

Today, I decided to watch Memento on Blu-ray. About 20 minutes into the film, the movie froze. The disc drive was reading like crazy, but I was still able to eject the disc. Upon inserting the disc again, it would play for a few minutes and then freeze up again. I decide to soft reset to the PS3 – bad mistake. Upon reset, the drive will no longer read any media, not Blu-ray or DVD. Nothing happens when the disc is inserted, not an error message or any drive spinning – it’s as if the PS3 operating system doesn’t even know that a drive exists anymore. I can still insert and eject the disc, but that’s all I can do with it. A full system restore taking 3 hours did nothing to help. So it’s either hope that the next firmware update will fix the issue, or it’s time to ring Sony tech support and get my PS3 repaired/exchanged.

Reading the various threads about this problem, it seems the problem is now very widespread. Nobody knows why only some PS3s are affected, and other aren’t. My PS3 was purchased in December last year, so it’s not a launch day console. As mentioned before, I haven’t used it like crazy, since I bought it for Blu-ray playback mainly (and the odd DVD). Some launch day consoles are affected, some are only a few weeks old. So it doesn’t look like it’s limited to one particular model, country or type of use. It could even be that an existing hardware problem exists, and that fw 2.42 somehow causes the problem to show up sooner. Who knows.

Luckily, my PS3 still under warranty (until December, that is), and I still have the receipts (as I had to keep it to redeem the free Blu-ray movies), so if I do go through the Sony tech support system, I won’t have to pay for the repair. Unfortunately, those without receipts or are out of warranty have already been made to pay $150 for what is clearly a Sony caused problem (due to their faulty 2.42 firmware). And this is not to mention the up to 7 weeks of wait while your PS3 is repaired, regardless of whether you had to pay $150 or not.

So what should you do to prevent/fix this problem? These tips might be helpful:

  • Don’t upgrade to 2.42! Probably best to stay with 2.35, as 2.40 is a bit buggy as well (although 2.40 and 2.41 shouldn’t cause the problems I’ve described with the disc reading).
  • If 2.42 is already installed, probably best to not use the PS3 until 2.43 or 2.50 is released if you already have 2.42 installed
  • If you get the freezing problem, do a hard-reset (turn off the console using the back power switch) – some have had success with this, but be warned that doing this can’t be very good for the health of your system
  • Doing a full (or quick) system restore seems to do nothing
  • The next firmware update may fix the problem if you are willing to keep the useless black box until then, but if you contact Sony tech support, they will ask you to send the console in, which doesn’t sound like a problem that could be fixed through software (if it could, shouldn’t Sony have released a firmware update by now?). Probably best to just call Sony tech support
  • If your PS3 is out of warranty or you don’t have the receipt anymore, then insist on Sony to fix this problem for free as some other users have already had this offered to them

I will keep you updated on what happens with my PS3.


42 Responses to “My PS3 just broke – firmware 2.42 to blame?”

  1. My PS3 just broke - Part 2 « Blog Archive « DVDGuy’s Blog @ Digital Digest Says:

    […] DVDGuy’s Blog @ Digital Digest Just what the world needs, another blog « My PS3 just broke – firmware 2.42 to blame? […]

  2. ryan Says:

    fantastic work, i am having the same problem with my ps3. I noticed my games would play for around 20minutes then start freezing. It has gotten to the point where it wont read discs at all anymore and i dont know what to do. I know i have a 3 year warranty on my system but i dont have the receipt will that affect it? answers would be greatly appreciated now as i am dying to play force unleashed….

  3. DVDGuy Says:

    ryan: A 3 year warranty sounds like it’s not the Sony factory warranty, but probably something the store sold you. If it is, then you will probably need to contact the store and they may be able to help you.

    Otherwise, it will cost you about $150 if you send it in to Sony for repair without the warranty.

  4. ryan Says:

    well i am still under the one year warranty from the store. Does that make a difference. I dont have the receipt from them but i do have the warranty on the ps3 since I got it in december of last year. When you called sony about getting the new ps3 due to problems did they require you to have a receipt? I know im sounding lazy but any help will be appreciated.

  5. DVDGuy Says:

    If it’s still one year, than the Sony warranty should still be in place. When I called, they didn’t ask for a receipt or anything, just the purchase date and serial number. But I’ve also read reports where people were asked for receipts. Best to give them a call and find out, and try to source the receipt in the meantime (perhaps the store you purchased from can help you out).

  6. ryan Says:

    alright will do, thanks for the quick answers and being helpfull!

  7. ryan Says:

    And i dont have the box i bought it in, i didnt think i would need it since i always thought “something like this could never happen to ME…” Do i HAVE to have the box in order to return it to sony? Thank you so much for your helpfulness

  8. ryan Says:

    alright i called sony, they gave me the e-mail necessary to send it in. I dont have the receipt like they asked for, so i went ahead and called dell to get it. They sent one to my e-mial and i printed it up and am now just waiting for the box to arrive. hopefully the online printed receipt will be enough to get what i need done.

    2. I have a question aswell, dont i have to upgrade my next ps3 system directly to 2.42? cus i will be stuck at the basic 1.0 unless they upgrade it for me. Is there a way to choose what upgrade i put on it? i dont want to have to go through this stupid runaround with dell again. Thanks-Ryan

  9. DVDGuy Says:

    The refurbished console that Sony gives you should have a fairly recent firmware on it, probably 2.35 or 2.40, so you can just skip the upgrade to 2.42 until the new 2.50 firmware is out. I’m still not 100% convinced that 2.42 is to blame directly … I think the hardware fault is somehow more likely and quickly to show up under 2.42, but it is still a hardware fault (Blu-ray laser problems). If they replaced the drive, then perhaps 2.42 shouldn’t cause more problems, but to be safe, just keep it at whatever firmware they installed for you (and if they did install 2.42, then fingers crossed!)

  10. ryan Says:

    lol, i will hope for the best! And how will i know when the 2.5 comes out?

  11. DVDGuy Says:

    You should get a prompt to update to the new firmware when one comes out. I think it’s due quite soon now, because the details have already been leaked.

  12. ryan Says:

    i hope so…

  13. My PS3 just broke - Part 3 « Blog Archive « DVDGuy’s Blog @ Digital Digest Says:

    […] a small update on what’s going on with my broken PS3. I sent it out as instructed last Friday, and I received an email from Sony that they have received […]

  14. tito Says:

    Some problem here – Portugal – with the 2.42 upgrade.

    I’ve done the 2.43 upgrade minutes ago… problem not solved. My console is also dated December, 2007.

    Console must be shipped to Spain… maybe next Christmas I have a refurbished back… or not.

    So… 2.43 don’t solve blu-ray and dvd reading.

    At least, SONY should have a word to us…

  15. DVDGuy Says:

    2.43 was a release that was meant for Japanese PS3s only (it wasn’t mandatory for non Japanese PS3s), so I don’t think it fixes anything. I’m beginning to think that this problem can’t be fixed through firmware, as if it could, why hasn’t Sony made a hotfix for it?

  16. ryan Says:

    this is getting ridiculous they were supposed to have had the box at my house 2 days ago so now i have to call them again..

  17. Weekly News Roundup (21 September 2008) « Blog Archive « DVDGuy’s Blog @ Digital Digest Says:

    […] (and it doesn’t to anything). I’ve still not seen any response in relation to firmware 2.42 and the Blu-ray drive problem – I’m still thinking it’s more than a coincidence, but also more than just a firmware […]

  18. Clarence Says:

    I bought my PS3 on Sepr 8th of this year. It didn’t work right out of the box. I had the same problem…dvd player not working for DVD’s or Games. I must admit, the wireless internet part worked great. The box said not to return it to store, call Sony direct. I went on line to Sony and put in for a repair request. A week later a box arrived and I sent it to them (In Laredo Texas} the same day. I was sweating after that as it was the same weekend ad Hurricane Ike. I got thru alright and now awaiting return. It is supposed to be here tomorrow, the 22nd. It was shipped out from the city on the other side of the river from Laredo in Mexico. I smell cheap labor costs. Will write back about it when it arrives.

  19. ryan Says:

    Alright I have confirmation on the ps3 2.42 crash. On the Playstation site they have confirmed the fact that the ps3 crashes are due to system update 2.42. Apparently 2.5 will have the fix to this. It is scheduled to come out sometime in october. I will post the link when i find it again

  20. Gregg Says:

    The day 2.42 came out my Blu Ray discs would freeze at random points. I checked 10 discs all with the same result. I later updated to 2.43 with no improvement. I preformed every fix 3+ times with no result.

    This morning I called customer service. I was told since my warranty is out of date, I would have to pay $150 to get it fixed. I had my call escalated to James (48408) who stated there is no problem with the firmware, I’m just unlucky. After insisting for and hour and a half that my system be fixed for free, the CSR hung up on me.\

    Not being one to quit, I called right back. I was told that James was the only senior staff on site, I said I was fine speaking to him again. After being put on hold for 45 min+ I spoke with Mike Folden, James’ boss. He told me that he just stopped in quickly – which of course must be true, plenty of CSR’s stop in to work on a weekend just for fun.

    Mike gave me the same line, there is no firmware problem, pay up or hang up. I let Mike know that I am aware that many people are having this same problem, and that two of my relatives have experience the same problem with the system being out of warranty in addition to many others on this forum. I let Mike know that others have had their fee waived. He denied this, stating that they never waive the fee, ever.

    Calling on my past CSR experience, I asked him to run a quick check on specific case numbers which show that they have in fact waived this fee for many people with this specific problem. He stated this was not possible.

    At this point I told him how to look it up on the system he was using, he said ‘well I could do that, but I am not going to’. I asked him why he would not bother to look up two simple case files to prove me wrong, he got very angry.

    He very quickly told me that I would get a call back in 3-5 days, and hung up on me mid sentence.

    Anyone else have problems like this?

    I refuse to give up, I will not pay a penny for a system that they busted.

  21. nitro Says:

    Unfortunatly, im having problems with this disc reading crap as well and im not happy about it!

    For a whole year i have used the ps3, left it on for prolonged periods of time and even had heaters and other things running next to it and never had a problem.

    Only recently, i was playing Pro Evo 2008 when all of sudden the game froze. I tried soft reset but the PS3 started beeping at me and lights continually flashing. So i hard reset it. Since then, no game works.

    I let the PS3 cool down for a few hours as it was probably too hot. I put in Fight Night 3, game loads up to the title screen and just hangs! I can hear it trying to read the CD but clearly its struggling.

    I have no receipt and probably no warrranty either so i am screwed. TOTALLY GUTTED!

  22. mike Says:

    2.43 wont install, then it says to call cs so i did after 30 min there fixxing it for free dont pay the 150 its there fault

  23. My PS3 just broke - Redux Part 3 « Blog Archive « DVDGuy’s Blog @ Digital Digest Says:

    […] quick system restore (not the full one), and it seems to have fixed the problem. The PS3 came with firmware version 2.42, so I’m a little bit afraid. I’m also afraid to update to 2.50, due to the various […]

  24. My PS3 just broke: The Next Generation - Part 1 « Blog Archive « DVDGuy’s Blog @ Digital Digest Says:

    […] My PS3 just broke – firmware 2.42 to blame? My PS3 just broke – Part 2 My PS3 just broke – Part 3 My PS3 just broke – Final My PS3 just broke – Final (followup) My PS3 just broke – Redux My PS3 just broke – Redux Part 2 My PS3 just broke – Redux Part 3 […]

  25. Ozzy Says:

    Same shit here too, and my 60gb unit is now 2 months out of warranty. This only started happening after my updating to 2.42. It seems to happen gradually as well. For me it started with a freezing problem on Blu Ray movies and on MGS4. Other discs would play fine. Then my other discs started having intermittent problems, and then finally it will not read discs at all.

    I have stripped the system and inspected the drive, noticing that the laser does light up and the carriage motor works, however, the disc does not spin at all.

    Being absolutely pissed off, I even bought a 40gb PS3, swapped the drive out with the one from mine, hoping to return it as such and get my money back under the store’s return policy. However, the drive from the 40gb would not work in my 60gb machine. It seems that the firmware on the drive controller board has to match the firmware on the motherboard. So, totally screwed with that idea. Well, I returned the new console and got my money back. I am now at loss about what to do. I am also reluctant to but a replacement drive since I am unsure if that will solve the problem. People are reporting that after replacing their drive mechanism and laser the problem still persists. Some say this is due to the controller board being faulty, in which case you need to flash a new board with the current firmware on your old one. Apparently only Sony has the software to do this. WTF now? I don’t know.

    I am also very, very, very, very pissed-off with this shit. It stinks!

    I have also been arguing with the repair centre pricks here in South Africa about this being their problem since the machine forces an update in order to play online games. If the user had a choice about updating the machine then they might be right to say that updating “is at the users risk”. But for fucks sake, we don’t have a choice in the matter. So if Sony’s crappy programming is breaking their customers machines they need to start taking some fucking responsibility for it and sorting out the problem. Bastards! Chinese made crap! They fucking charge us hefty prices like their shit is still made in Japan. I have been having problems with much of Sony’s shit lately. It sucks too because I have ALOT of their crap, about 20,000 USD worth in fact. But that shit stops now. No more Sony products for me in the future.

    Normally, I would just go out and buy another console, no big deal. But this shit will just happen again in 13 months when the warranty is just expired. Sony fucking wankers! I hope they go bankrupt with this economic crises shit.

    To make matters even worse, I was dying to get my hands on Far Cry 2. I get it a day before the official release date, get home, and that’s when the machine no longer reads discs anymore, at all.

    Fuck it though, I refuse to buy another console from those Sony twats, or any other of their sub-standard shit for that matter.

    Sorry for venting, but I am sooooooooooo pissed.

  26. Rage Says:

    Updated this a few days ago to version 2.42 and when I invited the guys over to watch blu ray movies, the damn thing froze. And now every game does too! This is my second ps3 (60gb) because my first one’s drive malfunctioned, and now this happens to my second ps3…I believe I have a 3 year warranty but I’m getting sick and tired of these problems. I am seriously thinking of giving up on Sony and getting an Xbox 360!

    I may sit tight until version 2.50 comes out but I will call Sony and CSR to see if they can rectify this!

  27. Jon Says:

    I updated my day of release ps3 to play little big planet. The game ran fine I completed a fair amount of play (top game btw), saved the game, exited LBP. Now I cant see the drive on the media menu, it loads but it don’t spin, same problem. Obviously interested in how widespread this is.

  28. Josh Says:

    I too had this same problem back in October of 2008. I was playing Call of Duty 4 or something, and then the game totally froze. I did a hard reset on the system. Then it would not read any media format (blu ray, ps3 games, dvd, cds, dvd-r’s, etc). I had bought my ps3 on black friday of 2007 (November 23). I could not find my receipt at all. Luckily, i was able to go to the Circuit city that I had bought it at, and they were able to pull it up from my phone number and printed the reprinted the receipt for me. It was a Godsend that it happened and i got the receipt. I sent a service request and talked to a Jeff at technical support for over 2 hours. He was totally amazing. He really hooked me up. He was able to get it set up to where they would extract my new 320GB hdd (the blue screw somehow got stripped), and they installed it into a brand new system. It only took them 2 days to get me the box. I sent it in on a Thursday, and got it back the following Friday. Totally amazing. Since getting my ps3 back, I am more cautious in playing it. I always get freaked out when i put in a disc, haha.

  29. graham Says:

    i am in the uk and about a week ago my ps3 stated freezing while i was trying to watch a blu ray i have the version 2.60 can anyone tell me if they have had any problems from this version.

  30. DVDGuy Says:

    It seems that all the firmware updates since 2.4 has caused the freezing/disc not reading problem. Don’t know if it’s something in the firmware or the firmware update process.

  31. Landon Wing Says:

    Hey everyone. I figured I’d join this party since my blu ray drive in my PS3 just failed too. First, you should contact Sony and get a case #. However, if, like me, you are out of warranty, Sony’s help won’t be cheap. And since Sony’ refuses to accept or acknowledge that they are knowingly selling faulty blu ray drives in their PS3’s, I figure that we should join forces.

    If your blu ray drive fails on your PS3, PLEASE register a complaint on: IF Sony is uncooperative in dealing with your issue, gives you an alternative option of requesting contact from a lawyer: Can you say, “Class action?”. Please do not hesitate to do this ladies and gentlemen. We paid for the BMW or gaming consoles, not the Datsun. Our PS3’s should not be failing shortly after the warranty period has expired.

  32. Jason_Davis Says:

    I have had the same problem, and the best thing to do if you have the time is to file a report with the better business bureau. The only way you can get the problem handled is in numbers. Enough people complained about the x box and they were forced to up the standard warranty to 3 years instead of one. Just complaining on a blog will get nothing accomplished, but if enough of us complain to the bureau, Sony will be forced to take care of the problem. $150 is too much to pay to have a piece of junk temporarily fixed. I want justice for the fact mine only lasted 7 months and being sent back only has a 3 month warranty. So should the rest of you. Do the right thing and file a complaint like I did.

  33. Scott Says:

    I totally agree witn Landon Wing i thought the problems i had with my ps3 was an isolated incident which Sony tried to convince me to belive until i spoke to friends of mine and found out they were having the same problems for no reason. I barely played with my ps3 and it was practically brand new until one day the blu-ray disc decided not to work anymore and Sony expects us to pay $150 to $200 to get something fixed that they knew about in the first place. We all need to do what our friends Landon and Jason is doing make the necessary complaints to Sony first to have them on record and then the BBB (Better Business Bureau) we need to do something so Sony will not be able to get away with screwing us its about time we get our justice and they deserve to pay for what they did to us. I hope this does become a class action lawsuit like with the Bell cellphone “Instinct” where people were screwed with the phone software so now its Sony time to face the music. I wish everyone the best and hope enough of us complaining will cause Sony to rectify their mistakes and take responsibility.

  34. christine Says:

    my daughter put a game in my ps3 and it had milk on it then the ps3 stoped playing games and only plays dvds what can i do about it

  35. DVDGuy Says:

    The lens might be dirty. There is a Blu-ray lens cleaner, as described here:

    But I’ve never had any experience with it. Don’t use DVD lens cleaners, as that will damage the laser.

  36. kfordeal Says:

    i have a ps3 that the cd i stick in it jus goes in without suction i call the company and i have no receit or warranty i have to pay 150 but who do i give it too, should i put it in the box they’ll send me or what? help

  37. DVDGuy Says:

    You need to call Sony tech support, and they will provide you instructions on how to send the PS3 to them (usually it means they will send you the shipping boxes and instructions)

  38. Jeanne Says:

    I have just came into the problem with the being able to play dvd’s but will not longer play my ps3 games. We did take it apart after resetting it. We also cleaned the lens. My warranty has been done for a very long time. any suggestions?

    thanks jeanne

  39. DVDGuy Says:

    Looks like the Blu-ray laser has had it (the drive has separate lasers for Blu-ray and DVD). Your best bet is to just have it repaired by Sony tech support, probably at the cost of $150 or thereabouts. If that’s too much (considering that’s half the cost of a new PS3), I’ve heard some have put their broken PS3s up on eBay, and recoup some of the cost of getting a new PS3 (for some, buying a broken PS3 + paying for the Sony repair is still cheaper than buying a new console). There is also the option of replacing the drive yourself (search YouTube for instructional videos), but it’s not for the faint-hearted.

  40. Jeanne Says:

    My husband has replaced the drive once before. Is there anything special he needs to look for when getting a new one now that the Blue Ray laser has went out? I may just use the E-bay idea as well. But want to cover all avenues. You are an awesome guy for helping people like this. I tried calling places here for just questions and got the cold shoulder. I will definatley be letting people now about your site.

    Thanks again SO much for the help already

  41. DVDGuy Says:

    There shouldn’t be any difference, the new drive will have both the DVD and Blu-ray lasers, so once replaced, it should fix the Blu-ray reading problem.

    Thanks for the positive comments about this little blog 🙂

  42. Mr. E Says:

    That sucks. I had just recently purchased a ps3 with a two year warrranty and it started expereiencing problems just like you guys encountered. Well I guess I should have taken it in to get fixed b/c with the glitches and freezes every time I was getting good made me so mad at Sony and PS3 that I broke my controller on the floor and continue to rip out my ps3 and slam it on the floor too. It broke very easily. What a ripoff. Breaking the thing couldn’t even get out my energy of hatred that I had for it. The PS3. Who would have thought that their 300 millionth console would be the worst. Way to get worse as a company. I will never buy SONY again! Earlier this day someone offered me 100 dollars for a used ps3. I turned him down. :>

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