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My PS3 is in working condition: both downloaded and on-disc games work. However, ever since Borderlands 2 crashed on me once, it sometimes randomly crashes. I can reboot it no problem, it goes through a filesystem check in a couple minutes and then either everything works again (and I can play for hours with games without problems) or it crashes again and I have to repeat this -- but in general, after at most two cycles, it starts working.

Now, I've tried replacing the hard disk and restoring from a backup, but that doesn't seem to make the problem go away. However, I've found very promising mentions of a so-called "safe mode" of the PS3 which allows you to reset all kinds of internal databases.

My problem is that if I try to follow the instructions, nothing really happens. Keeping my finger on the 'on' button doesn't do anything, it just boots up the console in normal mode. I don't hear any extra beeps apart from the initial one as it turns on.

So how do I get into recovery mode on a fat PS3 running 4.53 if it otherwise boots into normal mode just OK?

  • I should also add that I've now tried replacing the hdd with an empty one. After installing 4.53 on it, but without restoring from backup, I got the exact same behaviour: holding down the Power button doesn't do anything else than a normal boot. – Cactus Jan 20 '14 at 14:17
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    The recovery menu is accessed by starting from hard off. Turn it on at the switch, hold the power button down until it turns on then off again, hold the power button down until it beeps twice. Is this the method you are following? – Michael Frank Jan 21 '14 at 21:05
  • That's the thing, if I keep my finger on the power button, it just boots up as normal, and never gets to turning off again. – Cactus Jan 22 '14 at 5:43
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Recovery mode is not as simple as just keeping your finger on the power button. Did you try it as documented on Sony's official site?

I've copied the instructions below:

Activating Safe Mode

Step 1: Turn off the PlayStation 3 by holding the Power button on the front of the unit till the Power light is red.

Step 2:

Touch and hold the Power button (do not remove your finger from the button). You will hear the first beep, meaning the PlayStation 3 is powering on. Continue to hold the Power button and after about 5 seconds, you will hear a second beep, indicating the video reset. Continue to hold the Power button and after about another 5 seconds you will hear a third beep and the system will power off (Power light is red).

Step 3:

Touch and hold the Power button (again, do not remove your finger from the button). As in Step 2, you will hear the first beep, again for the PlayStation 3 to power on. Continue to hold the Power button and after about 5 seconds, you will hear a second beep for video reset. Continue to hold the Power button and after about another 5 seconds you will hear a quick double beep. At that point release the Power button. If you succeeded in activating Safe Mode, you will see a message on the screen saying, "Connect the controller using a USB cable and then press the PS button." Connect a USB cable to the controller and the PlayStation 3 and press the PS button to enter Safe Mode. You will now see the Safe Mode menu.

Step 4: We recommend performing the safe mode options in the following order until one of the options works for you. If one of the options work, do not continue onto the other options.

Restore Default Settings (item 2) Restore File System (item 3) Rebuild Database (item 4) Restore PS3 System (item 5)

  • I can't even turn off the PS3 by just holding the power button. I can only turn it off from the XMB. – Cactus Mar 23 '14 at 14:17
  • I have a problem accessing safe mode. My ps3's power button seems to be completely dead. I cant turn it on or off by pressing it. Eject button works perfectly fine, but power button does NOT work. Is there an ALTERNATIVE method to openinsafe mode WITHOUT using the power button? – user127690 Oct 20 '15 at 19:05

protected by Community Oct 20 '15 at 19:37

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