I've been trying to fix this issue for a year now, with no luck. I've lost track of how many Google searches I've done. I'll try to explain everything as thoroughly as possible.
I was given a Playstation 3 slim by a friend of mine. He had bought another one because this one was stuck on 99% while updating. I thought I would be able to fix it so I took his old one and went on to fix it.
At first, it didn't find the hard drive. I checked the hard drive compartiment, blew the dust out and re-inserted it. Hard drive was recognised, so I booted into safe mode and restored it to factory settings. Sony logo appeared, and I had a working Playstation.
Due to this console still being on 3.50, I could not access online, nor play any of the games I had bought previously. I'm also more interested in Playstation Vita stuff so I wanted the console to be on the recent firmware.
At first, I tried updating via internet. The update was stuck on 99%, so I put the latest firmware version on a USB drive (with the correct folder structure and formatted to FAT32, yes). The console hung on "Checking.. please wait".
I tried rebooting, updating from the disc, nothing worked. So I took the drive out, formatted it on PC and reinserted it, hoping it would reinstall the firmware this time.
It did not. In safe mode as well, it hangs on the "Checking, please wait" screen. My flash drive's lights flicker, so it does try to access it, but after a while it stops and it just hangs.
I have tried swapping the Toshiba internal drive with a totally new one, with a Samsung EVO SSD, it doesn't change a thing.
A friend of mine gave me his PS3 to do some Vita stuff with for a while. I cloned his drive, hoping it would just restore the factory settings and keep the firmware, but it refuses to boot off this image as well.
I have opened the unit to check the Blu-Ray connection, as this can cause update troubles as well. All the connections are fine. There is no problem with the Bluetooth radio. I was able to navigate through XMB wirelessly when the console still had firmware on it.
I currently have tried:
- updating via internet
- updating via a disc
- updating via a flash drive
- multiple flash drives
- multiple firmwares, even altered firmwares (if you know what I mean)
- formatting the hard drive
- cloning the hard drive
- opening the unit and check for connection errors
- sacrificing a few goats to Satan
^ my screen of doom
Thanks in advance.