Judging by my searching online, I am about 10 years late to the club of replacing my PS3 hard drive. I figured after about 10 years of on and off gaming, that is was time to replace it before I lost all my saves of NCAA Football 14. (In my mind the only reason to keep a PS3 is NCAA Football 14, just as many people keep a VCR to watch unedited Star Wars movies). My precious PS3 also happens to be the much rarer 60GB backwards compatible version, mean I can pick up most PS2 games and still play them. Note I have tried this with DDR to varying decrees of success. Anyways to the installation.
1. Backup game data
The backup utility works great. Just insert a USB stick, SD card, or other memory card. (Maybe a memory stick if you can find one laying around from a decade ago). It must be formatted as FAT32 in order to work. The memory stick I used I had to reformat on my computer first before it would work. You can find the backup utility under the system settings in the main menu.
2. Remove side cover
Use a flathead screw driver to gently pry open the side cover of the system. It was not held in with very much force.
3. Remove HDD Caddy
The caddy is held in place via one screw. Note the caddy first needs to slide sideways before pulling out of the unit. It does not slide in and out one direction. the small hook on the side flips up to help slide the caddy backwards.
4. Install new hard drive
I replaced the old seagate with a new 120GB Kingston. I never even got close to filling the old one, but I wanted the increase in read/write speeds. The caddy will accept all standard 2.5″ SATA drives and holds them in place with 4 screws on the sides. After screwing the drive in the caddy it slides back into the system.
5. Restore old game data
The PS3 will need to boot up and format the drive the first time you start. After that you can recover the game data by using the memory device you used earlier. Thi is done using the same Backup Utility as earlier.
6. Beat Bama?
I did not beat Bama unfortunately in this game, but there is also next year. I did notice the game loaded a bit faster than it had previously. Otherwise I was very glad to see all my saves show up immediately and I did not have to go searching for them. Overall happy with how easy this process was. Lets hope my PS3 lasts for another 10 years!