The kit includes a DVD with software, 40GB hard drive, keyboard and mouse. The beta, or test, version will be available in June.
More than 6,000 people signed a petition earlier this year to encourage Sony to work on the project.
The PlayStation 2 is powered by a MIPS chip. One of the benefits of Linux is that it's comparatively easy to get it working on different CPUs.
Sony selected Linux to help game developers simulate the PlayStation 2 so they could get a jump on creating games before the actual hardware was available.
The programming blueprints, or source code, for the kernel--the heart of Linux--is included on the DVD, Sony said. But the source code for a proprietary "runtime environment" that lets games play on the system is not.