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Drive Expansion and Drive Upgrade FAQ

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by bkdtv, Oct 19, 2007.

  1. May 31, 2010 #5921 of 10248
    MPSAN

    MPSAN Active Member

    1,190
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    Jun 20, 2009
    Portland,...
    Hi ovit...

    Remember to at least load 11.g as that is "supposed" to fix the drive. We are all still trying to confirm that, so once 11.g is loaded (may need hard boot to do it) then see if a soft boot works!
     
  2. May 31, 2010 #5922 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
    2
    Jan 4, 2003
    Good point! :up:
     
  3. May 31, 2010 #5923 of 10248
    Mahty

    Mahty Member

    57
    0
    Jan 6, 2006
    First, an update: Perhaps I was a bit too impatient with the C&DE process. Although the TiVo onscreen C&DE message stated that this process might take "up to an hour," I kind of grew impatient at the 2-hour mark and, after reading some online discussions about similar C&DE "hangs" (e.g., 72 hours and counting!), I pulled the plug to see what would happen with a hard reboot. I found that with such a reboot, my S3 automatically picked up with (or perhaps began anew) the C&DE effort. This was about when I began putting together my aforementioned start-again-from-scratch plan-of-attack, based on the (erroneous) assumption that I might now no longer be able to boot my S3 and avoid the seemingly-hung C&DE attempts. But at about the two-hour mark of the second C&DE attempt, I saw that the S3 had apparently finished clearing and deleting and was waiting for me initiate the Setup process.

    So, I guess I sort of answered my original question about whether or not there might be any known issue with the C&DE process operating on expanded drives.

    Anyway, I attempted the C&DE on my upgraded S3 drive because I wanted to clean it up before I began the process of copying to it some select recordings from the old drive (via my iMac, TiVo Transfer, and TiVo DeskTop). The S3 drive upgrade was based on an old truncated backup image from years ago that contained outdated season passes, etc. And since I have yet to call Comcast to re-pair the two CableCards with the new drive (I'm currently physically swapping drives for the recording-transfer effort, but still using the old and still-paired S3 drive for day-to-day use for a while longer), I thought that now was the time, if ever, to do a C&DE on the new drive.

    But for future reference, I am still wondering if indeed one can perform an after-the-fact MFSadd in order to expand a drive -- similar to an after-the-fact supersizing of a drive.

    And thanks, Rich, for your input.
     
  4. May 31, 2010 #5924 of 10248
    hmm52

    hmm52 New Member

    405
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    Feb 25, 2008
    Lower...
    Thanks, Rich. Yes, my inclination has been to do just that - 1 TB internal HDD replacement. There are plenty of eSATA and ports of all kinds on my home built desktop so the process shouldn't be too challenging. You have both expertise and a ton of experience on the TCF. I'm still curious about the Seagate DB35, what sort of reputation it created for itself with TiVo users overall. Would you ever consider using it in any present or future plans if you had it laying around?

    This doesn't apply much to my current situation but I'd like to be prepared in the event. I assume that pulling any HDD and doing the basic tests with manufacturer's tools wouldn't jeopardize recordings. Correct?
     
  5. May 31, 2010 #5925 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
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    Jan 4, 2003
    Oh...okay...I think I've got it now. That's some good info. Although you can run Supersize at any time w/o affecting anything else, IIRC you can't expand a drive (run MFSadd) that's already set up. I could be wrong, but I'm pretty sure that was a lesson learned by more than a few people here.

    Glad things are back to (sort of) normal. Enjoy!
     
  6. May 31, 2010 #5926 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
    2
    Jan 4, 2003
    Way back when the hack was discovered that allowed an external hard drive to be added to the Series3 I put a 500GB (enormous at the time) Seagate DB35 in an Antec MX-1 enclosure to increase the recording space on our S3. Worked perfectly...and was it ever quiet. After deciding to upgrade the internal drive I took the DB35 and put it into a PC I had built a while back. I don't use the PC for much, but the DB35 is still running like a champ all these years later. I have to look at the PC's drive activity light to see if it's doing anything it's so quiet, but it works like a charm. (The MX-1 is also still working perfectly as a backup drive enclosure.)

    That said, I used to be a huge Seagate fan. Their products were almost bullet-proof. It seems about the time the picked up Maxtor things went south for some reason (maybe they kept the Maxtor QC folks :eek:). Since then they've had more than their share of troubles. I've returned four Seagate drives (for computers, not TiVo) that were either DOA or developed the "click of death" right away. Reviews used to be stellar for them, now they are marginal at best. It's really too bad because they did make a great line of drives. The DB35's may be just fine these days, I've no idea. Now I'm pretty much using WD and the newer Hitachi drives exclusively. But my 500GB DB35 is still humming along.

    FWIW although the demand TiVo puts on a hard drive isn't very severe as compared to say an enterprise server, it wouldn't be unheard of for a drive that's running 24/7 to begin to fail after three years or so. The old Series1's and Series2's read and write 24/7 as well and their drives seem to last forever. However the hi-def data throughput an HD unit like the Series3 handles (not to mention broadband content, etc.) is much greater and certainly puts a much higher demand on hard drives.

    Most of the "quick test" diagnostic programs including Seagate's Seatools won't do anything to existing data. However, the results aren't really that useful or reliable when it comes to anything more than finding bad sectors. To really diagnose a drive's health you need to run an extended read/write/read diagnostic which generally reads an entire drive then writes zeros to the entire drive and then reads it again. As you can guess, that does indeed remove any data that previously existed. Some diagnostic and repair programs like SpinRite will find and isolate problems, but the program's cost of $100 or thereabouts is a bit steep if all you need to fix is one hard drive.

    Hope that helps and happy upgrading!
     
  7. May 31, 2010 #5927 of 10248
    hmm52

    hmm52 New Member

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    Feb 25, 2008
    Lower...
    Thanks much for your thorough dissertation. It leaves just one remaining question. How far do you go with testing HDDs before putting them into service? The extended read/write/read diagnostic or something short of that?
     
  8. May 31, 2010 #5928 of 10248
    Ovit311

    Ovit311 New Member

    12
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    May 21, 2010
    I was thinking of doing it in 4 steps and noting the results, since the drive's manufacturing date you obtain is a random event.

    Frist use Mr. B's 11.d image with and without Intellipark disabled, then updating to 11.g and repeating the process. This gives 4 data points with a specific date. For example if the date is later than March and it works (Intellipark not disabled) with 11.d then WD did some updating. Or a date earlier than March that works with 11.g could indicate the Tivo update has a fix. Of necessity is receiving a good drive and not DOA :rolleyes:

    I presently have 3 laptops as I'm rebuilding my desktop, so the wdidle3 should work with my bootable usb stick drive. Also have 3 versions of wdidle3 (1.0, 1.3, 1.5) on the stick drive. Not sure if the version makes a difference, but I read somewhere only 1.0 can disable Intellipark, the other 2 versions just extend the idle times.

    If I added the 3 wdidle3 versions that would give 12 data points, anyway with the World Cup just over a week away and 64 matches my TivoHD should be smoking :)

    Ovit311
     
  9. May 31, 2010 #5929 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
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    Jan 4, 2003
    Me? I try to run the extended diagnostic (read/write/read) on every drive before putting into service. There really isn't much in between that and a "quick test". The extended diagnostic can take a while, particularly on larger drives...12+ hours. I leave it run overnight. I've only caught one "bad" drive, but depending on the value of your data it might be worth it.
     
  10. May 31, 2010 #5930 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
    2
    Jan 4, 2003
    Wow! That's certainly going above and beyond the call of TiVo duty! There s/b some sort of award for that kind of dedication! :up: :up: :up:
     
  11. May 31, 2010 #5931 of 10248
    yukit

    yukit Member

    206
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    Jul 23, 2005
    I recall someone posted earlier that only V1.05 can disable Intellipark, but this may also be firmware version dependent as well.

    My data point so far: with stock WD20EARS (Feb build) soft-reboot failed with both 11.0d & 11.0g.

    I am having a problem running wdide3 on a laptop with the WD20EARS attached to an eSata dock. Not really sure why. I did change the SATA mode to ATA in BIOS as well. wdidle3 recognized the internal Seagate HD, but not the WD20EARS. WinMFS worked just fine with the same setup. I have to wait till my desktop system is rebuilt before I try wdidle3 on the drive again.

    I have a Hitachi 2TB drive in my HDXL unit. I don't think it is much louder than the original WD GP drive (AAM 128). I did experience a couple of hard-boot failure in the last 5 months, but I don't think I ever had soft-reboot gettig stuck.
     
  12. May 31, 2010 #5932 of 10248
    MPSAN

    MPSAN Active Member

    1,190
    1
    Jun 20, 2009
    Portland,...
    Great...I hope it all works and we will all be looking for your data.
     
  13. Jun 1, 2010 #5933 of 10248
    Ovit311

    Ovit311 New Member

    12
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    May 21, 2010
    Great info thanks for posting. My main obstacle at first in buying a WD GP drive was wdidle3 and my laptops, so I opted for the Hitachi 2TB and AAM. Some web browsing showed others using bootable dos usb sticks with wdidle3 success. I created one and used the /R option to read my laptop WD2500BEVS drive with idle timer set to 8 seconds. Shouldn't be a problem with my syba usb-sata adapter until my desktop is ready to go.

    Ovit311
     
  14. Jun 4, 2010 #5934 of 10248
    rainbow

    rainbow Member

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    Feb 7, 2008
    This 1T HD is selling right now via TigerDirect for $69.99 less $30 eventual rebate.

    I did not see this one listed on the preferred internal drive expansion list. Do you think this would be a -pass- or a -buy-?

    What do you think?

    The only remarks I found for this drive here was that is was noisy, but that post was dated 2009.
     
  15. Jun 4, 2010 #5935 of 10248
    sasmps

    sasmps Dirtdober

    163
    0
    Jan 1, 2008
    Kansas
    I need some guidence from the expets in this forum :)

    We have a Tivo HD with disk stutter and freezing, and the assumption is the disk is on the way out. This configuration also has an esata expansion drive (not sure which disk is going bad, the internal drive or the estata).

    If we decide to replace the internal disk with a new 1TB drive, what is the process to unmarry the external disk (saving what we can of the shows and content)? Can we clean off content to the point that what is left will fit on the interhal disk, then unmarry the external drive, then follow the process to copy the old internal disk to the new 1TB disk?
     
  16. Jun 4, 2010 #5936 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
    2
    Jan 4, 2003
    The 2009 quote still applies, by comparison it's a very noisy drive. The specs list the seek level at .3dB and manufacturers are notorious for "under stating". By comparison the WD GP drives are around .22dB to .25dB.

    FWIW here are two drives folks are using successfully that happen to be on sale at MWave.com (requires free membership):

    HITACHI 7K1000.C - $59.99 w/free shipping (use coupon HITACHI102). It's quiet out of the box but AAM can be tuned down to 128 to make even more quiet.

    http://www.mwave.com/mwave/skusearch_v3.asp?scriteria=AA78001

    WD WD10EARS -$69.99 (May require disabling the Intellipark feature).

    http://www.mwave.com/mwave/skusearch_v3.asp?scriteria=AA78009

    Happy upgrading!
     
  17. Jun 4, 2010 #5937 of 10248
    ThreeSoFar

    ThreeSoFar FourNow...WaitFive

    5,419
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    May 24, 2002
    Baltimore
    IIRC (i.e., I may be wrong), there is no way to preserve shows here and unmarry the drives.

    You can safely remove and perform diagnostics on both drives to try to figure out which is going.

    I see two possible positive outcomes for your shows:
    • If it works well enough to transfer to a PC or to another TiVo and you do so, you can transfer them back once this system is healthy again.
    • If you use dd to backup the current internal drive to another (at least as big), and if after doing so the new drive plus old external works, and works better, then you are done. If the problem pereists, put original back in and try a dd copy of the esata drive instead. There may or may not be a way to expand the new drive to use any space not yet used (say if your dd source/dying drive is 500G and your destination is a 1TB drive). Regardless, I'd recommend trying it first in the original size to see if the problem goes away or not.
     
  18. Jun 4, 2010 #5938 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
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    Jan 4, 2003
    Sorry to hear that your TiVo is misbehaving. There's a good chance that the issue is with your external hard drive. Have a look at these troubleshooting suggestions and options for saving your recordings...

    http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb/showthread.php?p=7553444#post7553444

    Upgrading the internal hard drive is a good idea (one less fail point) and fairly easy if you follow the directions on the first post of this FAQ.

    Best of luck and let us know how it goes.
     
  19. Jun 4, 2010 #5939 of 10248
    sasmps

    sasmps Dirtdober

    163
    0
    Jan 1, 2008
    Kansas
    Thanks for the quick reply :) I am helping a friend that has the external drive config, whichI do not have experience with.

    Rich, can you point me to the link that documents the disk test (I need to verify these have been run). Also if there are any specifics on how to seperatly test the internal vs external disk, that would be helpfull.

    I am pretty sure they are committed to replacing the internal drive anyway. It would be nice to know that the internal drive was in decent shape before I attempt to back it up on the new drive.
     
  20. Jun 4, 2010 #5940 of 10248
    richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
    2
    Jan 4, 2003
    Glad to help. Here's a link to TiVo's built-in diagnostics called "Kickstarts"...

    http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb/showpost.php?p=5643823&postcount=2

    KS54 is a standard SMART drive test. It's not completely reliable but will usually let you know if one or the other drive has problems. As ThreeSoFar mentions, the only reliable way to check drive health is to pull it, connect it to a computer and run a diagnostic like Western Digital's Lifeguard. Unfortunately if you run the extended read/write/read test all of the data on the drive will be wiped out.

    If TiVo boots up properly the internal drive's boot partition is good so you'd be safe using it to image a replacement drive.
     

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