New Linux-free PS3 part of cost-cutting drive

Old PS3
The original PS3 played nicely with Linux

While a fair chunk of the gaming world is rejoicing at the news of a new slim PlayStation 3 and its lower price, the hardcore Linux-loving PS3 fans out there are likely crying over their Fedora CDs.

That's because, as we know, the new PS3 doesn't include the option to run Linux under the previous 'Install Other OS' option.

Hardcore clusters bucked

It may seem as trivial as the loss of backwards compatibility with PS2 games (assuming you don't have a PS2 library, that is), but the disappearance of Linux could have a real-world impact few had foreseen.

That's because some research labs and companies have been using the old PS3 running Linux as part of a powerful Cell processor cluster. Even the fat PS3 price was much cheaper than buying specialist hardware.

Cost cutting

According to The Register, a now-deleted forum post on the official Linux for PlayStation website pointed out that the move was intended to save the cost of developing Linux drivers for the new, cheaper PS3 hardware.

However, there's also the suggestion that Sony was unhappy with anyone buying its loss-leading console and then never buying games. Hence, the chop for Linux.

Whatever the truth, we predict the market for original PS3s will see an uptick before long, with the fat console selling for more than its list price.

Via The Register

J Mark Lytle was an International Editor for TechRadar, based out of Tokyo, who now works as a Script Editor, Consultant at NHK, the Japan Broadcasting Corporation. Writer, multi-platform journalist, all-round editorial and PR consultant with many years' experience as a professional writer, their bylines include CNN, Snap Media and IDG.