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Restore File System | PS3 Safe Mode / Recovery Menu | Video Walkthrough |

  • On February 10, 2013

Restore File System - PS3 Safe Mode / Recovery Menu


How long does this take? Only 2 – 5 minutes. It’s a good thing to do if you’re having any issues with your PS3. Say, for example, your blu-ray drive having issues, trophy syncing, performance issues, etc. If your PS3 ever shut off due to a power outage or shut off due to a buggy game. This would be a wise thing to do. Basically, what it’s doing is checking the PS3’s OS (operating system) for any corrupted files and restoring them if needed.

Let us know if this was helpful and what this may have fixed for you.

If you’re still having issues, I would try rebuilding the PS3 database.
I did a walkthrough on how to do that here. There are FAQ’s at the bottom of the post too.



Question: What do I lose from doing this?
Answer: Nothing

Question: Will this delete any game saves or game data on my PS3?
Answer: No

Question: Will this delete any of my games, photos, music or videos?
Answer: No

Question: Will this remove or affect my trophies in any way?
Answer: No

Question: Will this work on any PS3 Console?
Answer: Yes, all PS3 consoles have this recovery menu.

Question: Will this damage my PS3?
Answer: Not at all

Question: What about my other accounts on the PS3?
Answer: You will not have to re-activate the accounts on your PS3.

Question: What do the other options in the recovery menu do?

  1. Restart System: Restarts the PLAYSTATION®3 System.
  2. Restore Default Settings: Reset all system settings back to default.
  3. Restore File System: Checks for corrupt/missing system files.
  4. Rebuild Database: Rebuilds the OS for the PLAYSTATION®3.
  5. Restore PS3 System: Fresh restore. Deletes everything and starts from scratch.
  6. System Update: Update the PLAYSTATION®3 System


  • Oly

    Awesome walkthru, thank you!!

  • last time i did this it ended up corrupting my hdd and i had to reformat it or it might have been the rebuild cant remember which one

  • I usually do this once a year, to keep it running properly.

  • I avoid this, being that I have hundreds of titles and it messes up the catalog descriptions i use to catergorize items, basically have to redo all of that, so if you use categories, then i’d hold off on doing this.

  • Oly

    Categories?? Hmm you name them yourself? I didn’t know that was an option

  • It’s not a good system. There should be a much easier folder system. I do it the same way.

  • Nice walkthrough!
    @kane112: ouch !?

  • wait what? this doesn’t destroy your categories far as i recall.

    I folder my games too
    a -> my currently playing games
    backlog -> purchased games i haven’t played yet
    finished -> games i’m over
    PSN+ -> free games I’ve gotten from PSN+
    minis -> obviously mini’s i’ve purchased
    minis+ -> a currently depreciated folder for minis that were free.. i haven’t move to PSN+ folder
    Other -> folder for things that aren’t really games, the MGS encyclopedia, the Singstar viewer (which is now depreciated), the Saint’s Row character creation station and such
    psone -> my ps one classic titles
    PS3 Full -> full PS3 download titles

    this is all off my head but i’m pretty sure those are all my folders. obviously I mostly play in my a folder or my PS3 full folder when i’m playing Borderlands or Darksiders. i may make a thread on this an report the number of titles in each folder

  • well, one of the rebuild features does, not sure which one did, but i lost all mine last time i did it.

  • think the rebuild database is the one that resets categories, if someone wants to test, be my guest,

  • I tried this somewhat recently to try to fix my downloaded copy of Dues Ex, which kept locking up my system. I did lose all of my custom directories. Didn’t fix the problem either. But eventually Sony refunded my PSN wallet, which is nice.

  • Kicks

    I wonder if this will clean up a game that shows up as corrupted every time I attempt to delete it.

  • Tosh

    Kane can you explain more in detail what happened? After you did this or the rebuild database your hard drive was corrupt after? Was your PS3 acting odd before this?

  • rhiko28

    Thank you for this guide and the previous one (rebuild database)! This has fixed the buggy problem I’ve been having and my PC works faster.
    The only side effect I have noticed from doing these two things is that the names of my files have returned to what they were when I first put them onto my PS3 system. Other than that, I still have all of my game saves and data, and all of my friends (I don’t have playlists or extra folders so I can’t say if those were effected!)

  • PS3Mom

    The reason we would try this is because we downloaded a PS3 game (Call of Duty) and can’t install (80010038 error code). After download there were corrupt data that we deleted. Tried deleting game and re downloaded it but same install problem persists. Should we delete the game before we try this restore file system? And then re-download it again? It takes so long to download we’d rather not if we didn’t need to.

  • edoa458

    Once i did this operation the message the file system on the system storage is corrupted… keeps showing up and theres nothing i can do!!! it was working fine before i did this restore file system!!!!!

  • @edoa458: Hmmm… it might sound like your internal Hard Drive is corrupted. You might have to change the HDD in order to make it work again.

  • Dean

    rarely have I had to use this option and when I do , it works fine. but today I had an issue with a game and followed the procedure for “system file restore”. for the last hour it has just been idle at ” preparing…please wait.” any solutions? advise? ect ect ect?