Note: if you have not done so, please read the introduction to Upgrading a PS3 Hard Drive before performing these steps.
Now that you have decided to upgrade the PS3 hard drive and have all the required tools and materials, you are ready to backup the content on the PS3 to a removable USB hard drive. When I did my backup I used a Maxtor 80 gigabyte USB hard drive, but any USB hard drive with enough space will do.
Connect the USB hard drive to the PS3 and the PS3 system software will automatically recognize the external USB hard drive, allowing you to copy contents from the PS3 to the external USB hard drive. You can now move on to the next step.