PlayStation Jailbreak was the first Universal Serial Bus chipset that allows unauthorized code execution, such as homebrew, on the PlayStation 3. It bypasses a system security check using a memory exploit which occurs with USB devices that allows the execution of unsigned code. One of the most popular pieces of homebrew software used with the device is Backup Manager, which allows users to copy game titles from the optical media to the hard drive of the PlayStation 3. Backup Manager can also be used to run homebrew applications that are created to run in the console's native mode.
Multiple devices to perform code execution exist, such as the open sourced versions (e.g. PSgroove, PSfreedom). Most of these only work on PlayStation 3 system software v3.41 or lower as PlayStation’s System Software v3.42 patches the mod chip exploit on the console. The creators of PS3 Jailbreak also released PSDowngrade which enables downgrading of PlayStation 3's System Software to v3.41 (Or lower) from v3.42, v3.50, and v3.55.
The jailbreak was in .PUP format and allowed users to have access to their PlayStation’s internal HDD and run homebrew. The use of backup managers on v3.55 was not possible until the 19th of January 2011 when Kmeaw (an Eastern European hacker) released his 3.55 custom firmware which allowed the PlayStation’s BD drive to be emulated.
Present and future support
In August, 2011, information about hardware that was downgrading PlayStations on system software v3.70 was being released. These hardware mods were Nand/Nor chip flashers that would either be soldered or clipped onto the PlayStation’s chips on Nand/Nor chip located on the PlayStation’s motherboard. It would then flash the memory off the chip and backup the PlayStation's firmware hence downgrading the console when the hard-drive was formatted. These flashers still work on the latest system software version and can be purchased online.
In October, 2012, a hacking group known as The Three Musketeers released the Level 0 keys for the PlayStation 3. These were the same keys that would have allowed a Chinese hacking group known as "BlueDisk" to release a purchasable CFW (custom firmware) for 4.21 and above. Shortly after, a well-known PlayStation 3 developer, "Rogero," released his free of charge 4.21 CFW. There are now different developers releasing CFWs for the latest versions of PlayStation 3's firmware. These custom firmware render the PlayStation Jailbreak obsolete. They cannot, however, be installed unless the PlayStation 3 is on system software version 3.55 or below.
On June 26, 2013, the 3.60+ loader keys were released to the public by "The Great Unicorns" and on the same day hard-drive encryption for PHAT consoles were released by a developer called "flatz." Following this the Lv1ldr crypto keys were released for 4.21-4.46.
- PS3 Jailbreak was outlawed in Australia as it was considered to be in violation of copyright law. The ban states that PS Jailbreak cannot be imported, distributed to another person or offered to the public.
- However, no case has been made against an individual by the Sony corporation on the matter of downgrading one's PS3. Nor has any development team that works on downgrading tools (downgrading to the jailbreak capable 3.55 OFW) been presented with litigation by Sony (E3 Flasher Limited, Progskeet, etc.) Sony's latest console, the PS4, has yet to be jailbroken.
Sony, after questionable collection of IP addresses and personal information of users even just viewing any of Hotz's sites, Twitter, Facebook, etc., reached settlement with Hotz out of court.