Playstation 3, USB backup, and error 80010006…

After a long time I decided to backup my Playstation 3. All I would need to connect a FAT32-formatted USB drive, and go to “System settings”/”Backup” in the PS3 menu. Easy? Right..

However, trying with two different USB drives, I got error 80010006 shortly after the backup had started. I could manually copy videos and game settings to the same drive so I did not understand what could have been wrong. After a little Googling, I found out that PS3 might be somewhat picky on how the USB drive is formatted. I used Mac OS X (10.6) to partition and format the drive to “MS-DOS” format (i.e. FAT32). It seems that PS3 does not like FAT32 drives formatted with a Mac. So, I booted up my Ubuntu PC and formatted one of the USB drives there (used system type 0x0c (W95 FAT32 (LBA)) instead of 0x0b (W95 FAT32)). And then it just worked…

So, it goes approximately like this (of course you may have a different device name and fdisk menus, but you get the idea):

# fdisk /dev/sdb

Command (m for help): n
Command action
   e   extended
   p   primary partition (1-4)
p
Partition number (1-4): 1
First cylinder (1-12161, default 1): 
Using default value 1
Last cylinder, +cylinders or +size{K,M,G} (1-12161, default 12161): 
Using default value 12161

Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/sdb: 100.0 GB, 100030242816 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 12161 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x00000000

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdb1               1       12161    97683201   83  Linux

Command (m for help): t
Selected partition 1
Hex code (type L to list codes): c
Changed system type of partition 1 to c (W95 FAT32 (LBA))

Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/sdb: 100.0 GB, 100030242816 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 12161 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x00000000

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdb1               1       12161    97683201    c  W95 FAT32 (LBA)

Command (m for help): w
The partition table has been altered!

Calling ioctl() to re-read partition table.

WARNING: If you have created or modified any DOS 6.x
partitions, please see the fdisk manual page for additional
information.
Syncing disks.

# mkfs.vfat -v /dev/sdb1
mkfs.vfat 3.0.7 (24 Dec 2009)
Auto-selecting FAT32 for large filesystem
/dev/sdb1 has 255 heads and 63 sectors per track,
logical sector size is 512,
using 0xf8 media descriptor, with 195366402 sectors;
file system has 2 32-bit FATs and 32 sectors per cluster.
FAT size is 47674 sectors, and provides 6102219 clusters.
Volume ID is 3d0a6e1a, no volume label.
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