Fix your PS3 and don't pay Sony for a new hard drive

I was at home the other day and a power spike caused my PS3 slim to crash while on my second straight hour of Call of Duty 4 multiplayer.
I tried to turn the machine off, but it was completely and utterly hung, so there was no other alternative but to pull out the power cable. I did it with trepidation, knowing full well the risk that I was taking.
I gave the machine a few minutes to cool down and plugged it back in. I got the dreaded wavy line screen and nothing... nada... zilch. The screen just didn't change and I sat there for a few moments as the sickening feeling of realization set in. My beloved PS3, provider of countless hours of musical, video and gaming entertainment, was probably fried.
In desperation, knowing full well it was futile, I tried rebooting it a couple of times, but after the third attempt, i got the fatal (or so I thought) YLOD - the yellow light of death which began flashing on the hard drive. I googled it and found that since the release of patch 2.50, you can access a recovery menu, so I followed the instructions.

1. Turn off Playstation®3
2. Hold The power button down; The system will turn on and turn off once again.
3. Once the System has been shutdown, re-press you finger until you hear 2 consecutive beeps
4. When you hear the 2 beeps take finger off power button
5. You will be prompted to plug in your controller via usb and then hit the PS button
6. The Recovery menu will pop up

The menu allows for the following: 
Restart System: Restarts the PLAYSTATION®3 System.
Restore Default Settings:Reset all system settings back to default.
Restore File System:Checks for corrupt/missing system files.
Rebuild Database: Rebuilds the OS for the PLAYSTATION®3.
Restore PS3 System: Fresh restore; Deletes everything and starts from Scratch.
System Update: Update the PLAYSTATION®3 System

You start from number two and work your way down. It seemed like option three was the ideal one, but it was just getting stuck and restarting of its own accord. So in the end i interrupted the process and moved on. I was still not getting any joy, and the software would not even let me choose the option to format and start from scratch. I then came across a forum which showed me the trick to do it. But first, you need to be able to know how to remove your PS3's hard drive. All you need is both a flatbed and a Phillips screwdriver. Check out the link below: 

And this is where the trick comes into it. You tell the PS3 to check for errors (system restore), but before hitting X, you need to unplug the hard drive. The PS3 might wait a couple of minutes before it tells you that it has no hard drive on board and that you must plug one in. As soon as you do so, it will tell you that it is going to format the drive, and Bob's your uncle, its pure mustard. Formatting takes two minutes tops and you are back in business. You might have lost all your save games and downloads, but at least you have your precious PS3 back again. It sure as hell beats taking it to the repair shop where they send it back to Sony and install a new drive for EUR150! It also beats afour week wait to get your console back !



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