PSJailbreak Open Sourced

Reports are surfacing this morning that an open source alternative to PSJailbreak has been released, the alternative is called PSGroove and is available to download from github, a code distribution platform. The software is available for anyone to download free of charge, giving users the ability to compile the code and transfer it to a compatible USB device like the AT90USBKEY, or its alternatives.

PSGroove is basically a clone of the PSJailbreak exploit that has rocked the PlayStation world over the past couple of weeks, however PSGroove contains some important changes from its cousin, mainly that the code which enables the PS3 to ‘backup’  games to an internal or external HDD has been removed meaning that PSGroove won’t enable users to play a backup of a game. What remains is the ability to for users to run unsigned code on normal PS3 an ability which has only previously been available to ‘debug PS3s’ used for games development. This opens the door for homebrew development on the PlayStation 3.

The open source nature of PSGroove means that anyone is free to download the software and modify and improve its code anyway they want, including releasing it as an off the shelf, commercial product. Having the code exposed in this manner also proves there is no Sony copyrighted code or hardware used in the triggering of this workaround. That being the case it’s difficult to see how Sony will be able to combat this legally, something which could have a huge bearing on Sony’s current legal efforts to clamp down on the PSJailbreak resellers.

Source: Digital Foundry.

42 Comments

  1. There is also already a recompiled version available with the backup features re-added. Unsurprisingly :(

    • Yep, homebrew always leads to warez, sadly :(

    • Not surprising at all.

  2. oh dear. Not good.

    • Homebrew can be great.

      For example, the addition of folders on jailbroken iPhone’s forced Apple’s hand to develop it and offer it as part of the standard firmware (albeit about 2 years late)

      • i guess you are right, in time, Sony will have to take this in hand and could give us more options. Does it open a gateway for viruses and things though?

      • will homebrew allow someone to make a Megadrive emulator?? then just run Roms from a USB stick?

      • Emulators, are 2nd only to ‘backup’ managers in the world of homebrew, their overpowering presence somewhat overshadows the good work that can be done.

      • yea, but for me, a decent emulator i can play on my TV without the need for my MAC is top of the list…next would be a decent free media streaming app from MAC to PS3

      • @bajere :
        I use ps3mediaserver which isn’t perfect but it’s free and also transcodes those mkv files that ps3 won’t normally play.

        http://code.google.com/p/ps3mediaserver/

      • thanks, ill give it a try!

  3. To be honest, I don’t think it’s such a bad idea. Without the industry damaging backup option, I think this could pave the way for budding app developers to expand to a new platform. However, I am completely against acquiring copyrighted material for free.

  4. cant sony just block ‘the code’?

    • Not if it’s open source. The question is whether they can block the part that is not present in PSGroove which is the bit allowing ‘backups’.
      Hopefully they can and we will end up with homebrew development and no piracy. It’s probably a bit of a pipedream that though

      • A backup manager will be the number 1 developed homebrew ‘app’ I can’t see a way around that fact, shame because home brew could be great as long as no one’s copyright is infringed

  5. I do like the idea of using it for homebrew.

  6. Surely firmware can be updated to detect and block the presence of these files on any USB device connected to the XMB?

    • Possible, but then this code can be modified so it can’t be recognised. A FW war isn’t in Sony’s interests (I’m not sure their Angolan server with a 14.4k backbone could cope)

      Also development PS3 may be rendered useless by such an update, so Sony is walking a tightrope on that front too

  7. Am I right in thinking that all PS3’s are designed to read for code from a USB stick if you press the ejecct button while powering on and that this is there so Sony service centers can quickly and easily ‘fix’ broken PS3’s? Then a USB stick containing the code was ‘stolen’ from a service center and the code cloned? If so could Sony issue a firmware update for the PS3 to not read from the USB port when booting and find some other way to fix them in the service centers?

    • It looks like Sony’s code hasn’t been cloned in anyway.

      Yes the way to stop it would be to change the PS3 boot order so USB is excluded, but then they will have to work out another way to service PS3s whether that is feasible I don’t know.

      • The only other way to unbrick PS3’s in a service center would be to have a device that attaches to a drive cable, preferably the BDROM as it has the easiest access for service personel. But they run the risk of that getting cloned too.
        To prevent access to the bootmanager would also prevent debug units operating too.
        TBH, I think this dongle in whatever form is here to stay.

  8. I’m on the fence. Piracy is no doubt bad but homebrew software can be very good and above all legitimate and add to the allure of the PS3. Will be interested to see what legal software could come out of this (if it can be called as such). nevertheless I’m not going anywhere near this – fear the banhammer!

    • It’d be interesting to have a homebrew debate and how homebrew could drive the PS3 eco-system to evolve. Sony will then be able to say… It Only Does Everything.

      On many people’s wishlist, a PS2 emulator? forcing Sony’s hand to try and bring backward compatibility officially to the PS3

      • Look at Android. That is open source and there is some incredible development in ROMs, themes and root apps all with Google’s blessing and, in many cases, help!

      • The enhancements to Apple’s official iPhone firmware, like cut and paste, folders, customisable backgrounds, multi-tasking (of sorts) is largely down to the efforts those homebrew style apps working on jailbroken iPhones

      • Hmm, I’m not sure about that. All of those are just things the iPhone really should have been able to do already as many far older devices could.
        Apple added them in to official firmware because of the demand for what are pretty basic features which people had developed on jailbroken devices to make up Apple’s own failings

      • Maybe Sony should have done something like the rumoured app store that was due in Q2
        http://www.thesixthaxis.com/2009/11/19/app-store-coming-to-ps3/

  9. if sony started some sort of indie program like live has, and sony had for ps1 and ps2, then there will be a legitimate outlet for homebrew content, and there will be less call for anything like this.

    those who may get something like this for homebrew could move on to piracy, with some sort of indie program they could stil create the homebrew and distribute it but with no possibility of piracy.

    i don’t want to see piracy on the ps3 but i would love to see some sort of homebrew on ps3, something like net yaroze and whatever the ps2 version was called.

    true the indie program on 360 means there’s a lot of crap, but there are a few gems, and sony and the creators could make money too.

    • Yes, you’re right.

      Sony could have allowed some sort of homebrew platform like they did on past consoles, which locked away the ability to pirate like the 360’s XNA studio would have potentially made efforts which do have pirate-sized security holes in them (like this) useless

  10. Oh not the alcoholic homebrew damn

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