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Roamio - Adding External Storage

Discussion in 'TiVo Roamio DVRs' started by markp99, Sep 14, 2013.

  1. Jul 15, 2014 #41 of 155
    CopRock

    CopRock New Member

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    Jul 13, 2014
    Yeah I know, but for a variety of reasons I'd rather do an external drive... and its usually running 85-95% so would have to lose stuff I haven't watched
    It looks like its only 1tb WD's out there, so I'll try that for now and I'm assuming the risk you are talking about is something not getting recorded and not some fire hazard explosion thing right? :eek:

    Just curious, why does a 4TB need to be 'prepped' and not a 3TB internal?
     
  2. Jul 15, 2014 #42 of 155
    telemark

    telemark New Member

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    Short answer: 4TB is far enough away from 3TB to break Tivo's assumptions.

    Long answer:
    The Roamio preps a drive by a simple formula / method of many fixed sized partitions, and 2 variable size partitions based on the drive size. Tivo didn't necessarily intend this to work with arbitrary drive sizes, aside from their chosen HD sizes. (500, 1TB, 3TB)

    The map the formula (a formula designed for smaller drives) generates for a 4TB drive though, ends up needing 64bit addresses. This overflows some other Tivo software which only allocated 32bit addresses.

    There are better 4TB maps that stay within 32bit addresses, but the auto-generated map is not one of those.

    If Tivo wanted to support 4TB drives, it would be a one line change for them.
     
  3. Jul 15, 2014 #43 of 155
    jwbelcher

    jwbelcher New Member

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    Orlando, FL
    Thanks thats nice to know... 1 line. :rolleyes:
     
  4. Jul 15, 2014 #44 of 155
    andyw715

    andyw715 Active Member

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    Doesn't the pro come with 3 TB?
     
  5. Jul 15, 2014 #45 of 155
    telemark

    telemark New Member

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    Sorry, I was writing from memory. Thanks, corrected for now.

    I'll check the calculated offsets when I get a chance, but the explanation is the same though.
     
  6. Jul 15, 2014 #46 of 155
    nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

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    Cox Cable...
    Is the $64K question a matter of now that workarounds have been made, if TiVo changes that "one line" to properly auto-partition could it break WK and other 4TB band-aid solutions?

    It would suck if the "one line change for TiVo" couldn't be implemented due to the workarounds (if that's the right way to describe the matter).

    How's the testing on the WD Purple PURX drive going? I have some erase/read/erase/verify tests I'd like to get a results for from you, using HDD Scan 3.3 and 8192 logical sectors per operation on your drive(s) if possible. At minimum the non-destructive read/verify tests could help me.
     
  7. Jul 15, 2014 #47 of 155
    mattack

    mattack Active Member

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    Well, obviously don't limit it at 4 TB, since there are now 6 TB drives available.


    I have absolutely no info either way, but I suspect not.. as long as it can read the partitions, and doesn't think it's an unformatted drive..
     
  8. Jul 15, 2014 #48 of 155
    telemark

    telemark New Member

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    The small change I mentioned would just restrict the formatter to stay within 32bits. This should not affect anything besides drives that need to be (re)formatted.

    6TB may require proper 64bit support. If they haven't done it already, it would be changing variable declarations from 32bit size to 64bit size (assuming the relevant language used works that way).

    Drive is on the shelf. You should PM me tests you want done. And soon cause I only got it for the 4TB project which is about finished.
     
  9. Sep 5, 2014 #49 of 155
    Keith Elkin

    Keith Elkin Member

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    Oct 15, 2002
    Long Island, NY
    I'm curious if anyone ever verified whether you can move an external drive from one Tivo to another by formatting it? I just received a Roamio Plus today and since I already own a WD MyBook DVR Expander which is connected to the old Series 3 I'll be replacing, why not user it on the Roamio Plus and save $120.. Any try it?
     
  10. Sep 5, 2014 #50 of 155
    jmbach

    jmbach der Neuerer

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    Yes you can move it. You of course lose all recordings. (unless you transfer the ones that are not copy protected first) If you run into problems, might need to get a program that wipes out the first few sectors first and then connect it to the Roamio.
     
  11. Sep 5, 2014 #51 of 155
    bmgoodman

    bmgoodman Member

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    Dec 20, 2000
    Northern...
    Unless the MyBook is pretty new or you don't value your recordings, I would suggest you don't use it. Sure, it's extra space, but if it's anywhere near as old as your Series 3, it's possibly on its last legs.
     
  12. Sep 5, 2014 #52 of 155
    JWhites

    JWhites New Member

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    Oh I've had the original WD DVR expander (orange ring) running non stop just fine on one of the new Roamio Pro units I installed last year for my Uncle and it's running as great as the day I bought it for him back in I think 2007. It's been used with a TiVo HD, a Moxi, a Comcast Cisco DVR, a Premiere, and now the Roamio Pro. I was concerned with how it would hold up in the Roamio with the thirteen activities going on at the same time. (Six tuners recording, playing back a pre recorded show, transferring a show to another TiVo, transferring a show from another TiVo, streaming four shows to mobile devices, and streaming a pre recorded show remotely to another TiVo, all at the same time without a problem.
     
  13. Sep 5, 2014 #53 of 155
    Diana Collins

    Diana Collins Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    Of course, all hard drives work great...until they don't. Most hard drive failures are sudden, and usually fatal.
     
  14. Sep 5, 2014 #54 of 155
    JWhites

    JWhites New Member

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    True but the same can be said about a lot of things that fail suddenly without warning, including airplane fuselages and blood vessels.
     
  15. Sep 5, 2014 #55 of 155
    nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

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    Cox Cable...
    Which, like you expressed concern about, often let-go when bearing greater load, or are otherwise stressed. More tuners = more TB/yr workload, which would often take whatever unknown point the drive would fail in the future, left to the same use, and move it in the "sooner" rather than "later" direction, with it's new heavier/higher-stress use. But, since no completely accurate drive health monitoring mechanisms, or life gauges, exists, you are stuck not knowing. All you can do is watch for warning signs, and hope drive doesn't not have a sudden-death failure.

    SMART is sometimes helpful. But, a TiVo doesn't even look at it unless you use KS54, or when booting/rebooting, it will quietly check the overall state (pass/fail), and merely put a FAIL result into the TiVo logs (TiVo can see a drive failed the status check, if you call and ask about a problem, and they view your logs). It's not going to pop up a warning on your TiVo saying it has a degraded below threshold SMART attribute value. So, unless you manually check a TiVo drive with KS54, the realtime monitoring functions are useless (but the attributes still change as the drive operates and detects things that have attributes).

    If you are aiming for my level of awareness, pull the drive every so often, to connect to a PC, and run a full read test, then view the attribute values. You could also run some nondestructive benchmarking/performance tests to see if the drive is getting slow with age (inevitable), or has developed weak/slow sectors. Of course, besides being excessive, the handling and reseating of connections might create a failure that would otherwise not have occurred. So, even the most obsessive folk might just want to stick to the KS54 tests.

    As a generalized rule: I suggest simply buying the right drive for the job, then doing all the tests, at least once, and hope you get 5 years out of it. Anything longer than 5 years is a gift, IMO.
     
  16. Sep 5, 2014 #56 of 155
    JWhites

    JWhites New Member

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    I only expressed concern because the new hard drives support 16 simultaneous streams at a time and I wasn't sure an 8 year old drive could handle it, and was pleased it can.
     
  17. Sep 5, 2014 #57 of 155
    Keith Elkin

    Keith Elkin Member

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    Oct 15, 2002
    Long Island, NY
    Yeah... I suppose I'm just trying to be cheap.. I just don't want to spend another $130... so I figure I'd use my existing drive.. If I buy a 3TB drive does it matter which make/model I get these days?
    -Keith
     
  18. Sep 5, 2014 #58 of 155
    nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

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    Cox Cable...
    Why does everybody fall for this marketing, that has absolutely zero relevance for TiVo use, at all? I keep trying to stop these false assumptions, but my posts get buried by all the fallout I get for being technical (and there is no other way to explain it).

    When drive mfg's say their drives support xx "streams", they aren't talking about the "streams" in the same context as TiVo's way of writing AV data to a drive. So far, the only DVR-like devices I'm aware of that use such streams, are true surveillance systems. In these scenarios, not only does each stream being recorded need to get every frame, the date/time stream that accompanies it needs to be spot-on accurate. Each stream is also being displayed, while recorded, making a 16 camera system require 32 streams. Don't have enough supported streams to use just one drive? Add more drives to the array to add more streams. This is where the AV-GP can't go, and Red NAS steps in (or the Purple for RAID host devices that work with WD's "allframe" which supports 32 streams). Since the Purple only has 1/3 the TB/yr rating of a Red NAS, you'd need more drives for the workload, or you'd need the cameras to me motion-activated, which is exactly the target market for the Purple drives. Still not enough, because you don't have motion activated cameras? Now there is the WD Red NAS Pro, at 7200RPM, for that.

    TiVo never implemented the ATA AV Streaming feature set, which writes data using an entirely different algorithm. TiVo just writes it like any other data on the drive, using the same algorithms and error correction as if you were running your computer OS on it, or it was a second drive that you used for bulk storage or backup. This is why you can (and people have been) opting to save some money (used to be ~$100 difference versus ~$10 now), by getting plain "green" drives, like the EZRX, EARS, EADS, & other non-AV models.

    With a TiVo, how much your drive can handle, before everything becomes too much, is limited by the rate at which the drive can internally write the data to the platters, in normal desktop drive mode, but also running in IDE compatibility mode (another potential bottleneck).

    The ATA AV Streaming feature set is the base, upon which WD created "silkstream" and the newer "allframe" proprietary iterations, but backward compatible with the base feature set. But, the number of streams supported will be reduced if the host device doesn't use the full added functions in the proprietary additional extensions. Seagate has their own brand names for their enhanced proprietary iterations of the same base ATA standard.

    It's almost always some of the members I least expect, to get hooked by this marketing bait. I just don't get it.

    When it comes to a TiVo, the ONLY marketing speak that does really matter is the TB/yr rating, in conjunction with having a 24/7/365 rating, while the AV designation simply means the drive was designed around AV use, and, at minimum, supports the ATA AV Streaming base-standard, which tends to also include a year more of warranty. This gives you a better idea how much data the drive can handle, and how long it can do so for.

    AnandTech has all the details on other brands. If you want the Seagate specifics, and other drive specifics, as well as comparisons, in the same classes, that's where you want to go get reading. A few days later, you'll have a migraine, and understand why I stick to WD, and don't factor in Seagate, in most threads. If TiVo goes Seagate exclusive, or I start using Seagate, that might change. I try not to play forum expert on a product I don't even use. The 500GB Seagate drives from my base Roamios never even got powered-up, before they hit the "original TiVo drive storage rack".
     
  19. Sep 5, 2014 #59 of 155
    Keith Elkin

    Keith Elkin Member

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    Oct 15, 2002
    Long Island, NY
    I can confirm that I moved my WD MyDVR Expander drive from my old Tivo Series 3 to my new Roamio Plus without any problems. It didn't pop up like it recognized it but when I looked at the system settings I noticed it saw it as external storage... I went to Settings --> Remote Cable Cards & Devices --> External Storage and there it was.... It saw the drive but told me I had to reformat the drive since it was from a different Tivo... I did so, and my total recording capacity went from 150 hours to 350. Thanks for everyone's help!
    -Keith
     
  20. Sep 6, 2014 #60 of 155
    JWhites

    JWhites New Member

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    Congrats Keith :up: enjoy filling it up :)
     

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