PS3 clock error plaguing pre-2009 consoles, Sony scrambling to fix

[UPDATE 2] Electronics giant confirms widely reported problems with PSN connectivity and auto-quitting in PS3 "Fat," urges owners not to use console until bug is fixed; PS3 Slim unaffected; problem appears to abate on Monday afternoon.

Source: Web gaming forums, including GameSpot's.

What we heard: PlayStation 3 owners globally have received an unwelcome surprise in the last few hours, with a yet unexplained error preventing some games from being played. The error--commonly being reported as "error number 8001050F" by console owners on user forums such as GameSpot's--prevents gamers from signing into the PlayStation Network and in several cases disallows gameplay in both offline and online modes.

Though Sony Computer Entertainment did not immediately make an official statement on the issue, various online forums said pre-Slim PS3 models have been the most affected. Forum goers have speculated that the issue could be related to a Y2K-like error with "Fat" PS3 internal clocks, or something more along the lines of a PSN server failure.

If you have a PS3 "Fat," you may be seeing this screen.

The official story: A Sony Computer Entertainment Australia spokesman told GameSpot AU that Sony was "aware of the issue and are currently investigating it."

Bogus or not bogus?: Not bogus that there's a massive issue affecting plenty of consoles globally. Internal testing performed by GameSpot staff has found that while some games can still be played offline successfully, others--such as Tekken 6, Darksiders, and Heavy Rain--cannot be played, with error messages reporting an inability to obtain or create trophy data on startup.

[UPDATE] A Sony Computer Entertainment America representative has now confirmed that the issue is indeed a widespread clock error affecting non-PS3 Slims built before 2009. It released the following statement to the press:

As you may be aware, some customers have been unable to connect to the PlayStation Network today. This problem affects the models other than the new slim PS3.

We believe we have identified that this problem is being caused by a bug in the clock functionality incorporated in the system.

Errors include: * The date of the PS3 system may be re-set to Jan 1, 2000.
* When the user tries to sign-in to the PlayStation Network, the following message appears on the screen; "An error has occurred. You have been signed out of PlayStation Network (8001050F)".
* When the user tries to launch a game, the following error message appears on the screen and the trophy data may disappear; "Failed to install trophies. Please exit your game."
* When the user tries to set the time and date of the system via the Internet, the following message appears on the screen; "The current date and time could not be obtained. (8001050F)"
* Users are not able to playback certain rental video downloaded from the PlayStation Store before the expiration date.

We hope to resolve this problem within the next 24 hours. In the meantime, if you have a model other than the new slim PS3, we advise that you do not use your PS3 system, as doing so may result in errors in some functionality, such as recording obtained trophies, and not being able to restore certain data.

As mentioned above, Please be advised that the new slim PS3 is not affected with this error. We are doing our best to resolve the issue and do apologize for any inconvenience caused.

[UPDATE 2] Monday afternoon, afflicted PS3 Fats at GameSpot's US offices were able to play games again and trophies appeared to be awarded as normal. However, Sony has still not given the all clear yet, and the PS3s in question all had erroneous dates of February 28 on their clocks, believed to be the source of the problem. Gamers who want to be 100 percent sure that they will earn trophies as normal may want to wait for Sony's final blessing.

[UPDATE 3] As of 5 p.m. PST on Monday afflicted PS3 Fats were awarding trophies with the correct date and time.

[UPDATE 4] Around 6 p.m. PST, Sony declared the PlayStation Network was fully operational and gamers could resume playing as normal. A spokesperson also revealed the exact problem which led to the nearly day-long outage.

"We are aware that the internal clock functionality in the PS3 units other than the slim model, recognized the year 2010 as a leap year," said Patrick Seybold, SCEA's director of corporate communications and social media, on the official US PlayStation Blog. "Having the internal clock date change from February 29 to March 1 (both GMT), we have verified that the symptoms are now resolved and that users are able to use their PS3 normally.

Written By

Want the latest news about Tekken 6?

Tekken 6

Tekken 6

Discussion

648 comments
FallenOneX
FallenOneX

How many people are looking at this page right now to remember what happened back then??

yosuke_hitomi
yosuke_hitomi

hmm sony sure fast taking this problems,even it just a minor bug.

jaredcrazy3232
jaredcrazy3232

just a little error, at least it doesn't render the machine a paper weight.

CaptainHerlock
CaptainHerlock

@MJKeril They'll probably update the calendar at some point. It wasn't a major problem. I didn't even turn my PS3 on that day. So when I finally did I said "Hmn, the date is wrong. Oh well, no trouble just to change it myself... and there we go... all better now!. The bigger problem is that many people couldn't even consider doing something else for one day. I've heard the gamer logic talking point of "I paid XXX dollars for my console... yada, yada, yada", and it doesn't fly with me. You can stand being away from your console for one day. It won't kill you.

johnryandaplin
johnryandaplin

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

SkinnZero
SkinnZero

mine is a fat PS3 but I played completely normal these days (actually, I heard about the bug AFTER it was solved) but my Batman Arkham Asylum save data got damaged and unusable anymore. Any connection between both problems? does anybody know?

WarGrad
WarGrad

Xbox 360 has the RROD, PS3 has this but not as severe but it is a black eye.

LilTrigga95
LilTrigga95

i didnt want to play online that day so its all good :)

NECOthaHOUND
NECOthaHOUND

Fellas, all this that crap about what system is better doesn't matter anymore, let's just all be glad they fixed the bug within 24 hours and we can all go back playing like we were meant to, that was really good, I got scared there for a sec but Sony came through, a round of applause to them, and to the other fanboys sony hating microsoft loving nerds... IN YO FACE MOTHERLOVER, IN YO FACE!!!!!!!

frazzle00
frazzle00

@astallworth Then why do you own one? Or is this probably false claim a feeble attempt to deflect accusations of being a fanboy?

frazzle00
frazzle00

@shenonio Yep, there are simply too many games to play to waste time bickering over which console is better. I still have to finish Darksiders, Bioshock 2 and Dante's Inferno on the 360 (recently finished ME2 though which imho was incredible :D), and I'm looking forward to playing Heavy Rain and Yakuza 3 this month on my PS3.

ninja_sword7
ninja_sword7

i lost my 100% Ac@ trophies very annoying

benboz
benboz

Luckily I had a PS3 slim.

shentonio
shentonio

@frazzle00 I guess so, but let them get on with it eh? Gonna get back to gaming now it's all sorted out anyways. Thankfully not too much damage seems to have been done, hope it's the same for everyone else affected : )

s_h_a_d_o
s_h_a_d_o

Sony, take note ... if (year modulo 4 is 0) and (year modulo 100 is not 0) or (year modulo 400 is 0)

then is_leap_year

else

not_leap_year

frazzle00
frazzle00

@shentenio Why is it strange? Sony fanboys have been doing this to Xbox threads ever since RROD was confirmed. It's just a simple case of tit for tat.

shentonio
shentonio

@Alex_09 For your info I'm not a fanboy, just seemed strange that so many x box owners were flooding PS3 message boards with comments about a console which they don't own. It's a bit pointless isn't it? Also I used the term 'x bots' as it's quicker than typing x box owners you see : ) Also I don't think childish insults are a good way to get a point across in the first place, but if you feel the need to then be my guest.

Doolum
Doolum

no one's perfect.at least it didnt brick PS3's

Get_Shorty
Get_Shorty

@tweak_at_chu Like I said stupid engineers who don't know how to make a machine keep correct time for more than three years.

FabioPizzini
FabioPizzini

@ ThePlumpPenguin worst of the RROD?!?!? Lol nonsense!!!

ThePlumpPenguin
ThePlumpPenguin

@kibleses I dont =P. But seeming that most problems (such as bricked consoles) happen to commonly occur on the older models (but also on some slim models), it may eventually be a case of you are lucky to have a working old model or they may be 'unsupported'.

kibleses
kibleses

@ThePlumpPenguin How do you know the slims won't have a similar problem?

ThePlumpPenguin
ThePlumpPenguin

This is almost as worse as the RROD's the 360's had. Looks like we might be forced to all ditch our phats and pay sony for new slim ps3's to prevent issues like these cropping up.

MJKeirl
MJKeirl

Now that thats over, I've finished work a couple of hours ago to find everything working again. But will Sony release a firmware update so this doesn't happen again. I'm kind of worried about this being a problem that the PS3 thinks that every Febuary is a leap year. personally i wasn't to affected by this, i just played Mass Effect 2 on my Box.

YoJim8obaJoe
YoJim8obaJoe

infestedcyborg1 Posted Mar 2, 2010 7:30 am GMT so YLOD, lense problems and now a clock error... even sonys machine isnt perfect. Least this was a easily fixed problem that didnt cost sony billions

infestedcyborg1
infestedcyborg1

so YLOD, lense problems and now a clock error... even sonys machine isnt perfect.

ColonelX24
ColonelX24

Woah they wrote 3 articles on this thing!

sartnd
sartnd

So Sony want us get taste of xbox360's RRoD, is this what it is? Very funny Sony...

jusmel
jusmel

Aha! So that explains why i couldn't log on to PSN. Glad it's fixed :)

blakeney
blakeney

"Mugen100 Posted Mar 2, 2010 12:26 am GMT Damn, that guy who accidentally typed a 2 instead of a 4 for the leap years is soooo gonna get fired!" lol yeah, ive just had this convo with my bro, i acually think there is ONE guy somewhere that f/*cked up his (old) job bigtime lol

SCGhost2424
SCGhost2424

thanks dark, i'll give it a go once i'm back at home~!

wondernova
wondernova

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

Triton
Triton

Dneveraic and GBPackersrule Guess we know which you fall under. Thanks for proving my point . Glad your experts in the systems don't own. Just play what you have and be happy with it. And game on brothers.

thrasher510
thrasher510

@ cannibal87 oh really now its so much better that you have to find one false thing about another system to makes yours look good, if you ask me if you have to hate on the competition in order to look better, then thats pretty pathetic.

jackdaniel594
jackdaniel594

@okassar you have a zune...?? LOL have u heard of ipod, even PSP.. but not zune..

Auricom_Pilot
Auricom_Pilot

I dont like the term fat to describe the old consoles. Why not the 'big boned' ps3's?

jackdaniel594
jackdaniel594

i am neither a 360 or PS3 fanboy, i own all consoles (well, 360 and PS3, as for the wii... HAHAHA no) and are happy with all of them.. but the 360 fanboys on this comments section are just stoopid.. they say things like 'now PS3 fanboys cant go on about the RROD'. they, in fact, can.. this error has nothing to do with consoles not working at all, and not many actually have it.. when 5.5 out of 10 360s get RROD or the disk scratch error, and just a few million out of about 40 million PS3s get a little CLOCK error, you have no way of using that to your advantage.. FURTHERMORE, sony fixed it almost instantly.. if this were xboxs doing this, it wouldnt get fixed for a very long time, thats already clear from current 360s still getting RROD.. my PS3 has not had this error, nobody i know has had this error, but ive got a mate who has had 5 xboxs.. now that shows true fanboy commitment.. you cant prattle on about a minor bug that was fixed within hours, when your console has a major manufacturing issue that hasnt been fixed in years.. now, as i said, i am not a fanboy, but seriously, i just had to get that out there..

thrasher510
thrasher510

The FAT is cooler in my opinion even if it is bigger, I like the piano black finish more.

okassar
okassar

Lol same thing happened with my Zune a year or so back, it was crazy, Zunepocalypse and now PSThrocalypse (although both are over x) ).

DEATH775
DEATH775

My friend owns a FAT and his PS3 is fine. I own the slim and mine is fine too.

TC_Squared
TC_Squared

Isn't the "politically correct" term to be calling it the PS3 Obese?

tunaface
tunaface

It's Y2K all over again!! We're all gonna die!!!!! Oh, wait. I don't own a PS3. I'll be ok.

Vorodor21
Vorodor21

Systems wars forums are that way -----> How about taking your fight about which system is better over there so that the intelligent people don't have to listen to it?

AceBalls
AceBalls

It's supposedly fixed now as of about an hour ago. Is everyone's FATSO's working?

Kane04
Kane04

"" You've got to be kidding, you want me to start unload every SERIOUS problem the 360 has? Just scratching DVDs and ... hum die like 3 out 10? I don't have time to unload the almost endless list of problems, every knows it anyway blind fanboy... -.-'