While the PS3 is one of the most advanced video game consoles available for purchase, from time to time, it has software problems that can’t be fixed. While a hardware problem can be fixed by Sony–either by fixing it or replacing the part–there is little Sony can do about other problems. One of the things that you can try is doing a factory restore on the PS3. This will reset your PS3 entirely and have it at square one.
The first step is to back up all of your information–saved games, movies, music, etc–onto a USB device. You don’t want to lose this when you restore the PS3 back to its factory days. This might take five minutes and it might take an hour depending on how much you have on the machine. But, it really does pay off in the end to have a solid backup for your PS3. Remove any game that is in the machine.
Once that is done, turn off the PS3 by the power switch in the back. Let it shut down completely and then turn the power switch back on. This is to make sure that everything is off. Once you’ve turned the power switch back on, press the power button on the front and hold it. Hold until you hear three beeps. The three beeps means that it is entering the mode to do a factory restore.
Go through the initial setup and run a full format. This can be accessed by going to System > Format. This full format will take at least three hours and might take even longer, so don’t wait around for it to finish. Plug in your AV cables instead of the HDMI incase the HDMI isn’t recognized after the reset.
Once the format is done, the machine will be completely swiped and brand new. Then, add the files that you removed for the backup and let those load up. You should be able to play anything that you had saved before. And, so long as it isn’t a hardware problem, the PS3 will be brand new.