Feeds

Sony's new PlayStation 4 and open source FreeBSD: The TRUTH

Unix fans whispered of daemonic beast lurking within gaming rig

Mobile application security vulnerability report

Sony has confirmed that its newgasmic game console the PlayStation 4 - on sale today in the US - uses a modified version of the open-source FreeBSD operating system.

In a license page on Sony's Japanese site the company lists the software used by the PEW-PEW-PEW machine, and Unix-derivative FreeBSD features prominently. The PS4's Orbis OS is based on the tech.

Speculation had surged in June that Sony had loaded a modified version of FreeBSD 9 onto its console after images leaked online of the console's development environment. Sony's no stranger to the open-source world: it's PlayStation 2 programming kits were Red Hat Linux machines, although it's infamous for dropping Linux support for the PS3.

The confirmation is arguably another win for the open-source world, and lines up with game vendor Valve's plan to bring a console into people's living rooms running a Linux-powered SteamOS.

Besides the daemon-logo'd FreeBSD kernel and related components, other open-source software used by Sony's entertainment box includes OpenSSL, Protocol Buffers, Webkit, jQuery, and Lua. The FreeBSD software license allows the OS's source code to be used freely by anyone provided acknowledge of the project's copyright is noted in the product's documentation along with the distribution terms and conditions.

Nintendo also uses open-source software in its Wii U games console alongside its proprietary Internal Operating System. Microsoft, on the other hand, appears to prefer purely its own home-grown code – namely the Xbox OS that was written from scratch for the original Xbox and the Xbox 360. The upcoming Xbox One will use the Windows kernel, Microsoft said. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Report: American tech firms charge Britons a thumping nationality tax
Without representation, too. Time for a Boston (Lincs) Macbook Party?
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple ran off to IBM
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Apple gets patent for WRIST-PUTER: iTime for a smartwatch
It does everything a smartwatch should do ... but Apple owns it
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
Child diagnosed as allergic to iPad
Apple's fondleslab is the tablet dermatitis sufferers won't want to take
Microsoft takes on Chromebook with low-cost Windows laptops
Redmond's chief salesman: We're taking 'hard' decisions
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.