The XMB or "Xross Media Bar" is one of the defining strengths of the PS3 console. Clean and deceptively simple, it has a number of functions and options to make navigation easier.
The Sony equivalent to the Xbox 360's 'dashboard,' the Xross Media
Bar was first
put to use on the PSP-1000 at launch and then on all PS3
models. Unlike its Microsoft counterpart, it has gone
through a variety of minor updates and modifications without any total
overhauls. The ethic of 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'
prevails in the case of PS3 firmware.
Simplicity doesn't necessarily equate to ease-of-use, however, the interface can be easy to learn and remain difficult to master. In this section we will cover a variety of related topics, from directory nesting and file management to theme installation and even custom theme creation.
The Playstation 3's cross-media bar interface functions on a series of vertical icons that expand into columns for ease of navigation through nested and branched directories. The 'columns,' from left to right, are Settings, Picture, Music, Video, Game, Network, Playstation Network, and Friends. We address most of these columns individually in the sections below.
PLEASE NOTE: Some columns, their options, and their form of display have changed significantly since the launch of the PS3 and its firmware upgrades. Unless stated otherwise, the guides below are written with the most current firmware in mind.
General XMB Management - General "How to Guide" for the XMB.