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The "Help! My Tivo is Stuttering /Freezing /Crashing /Clicking" Thread

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by ZikZak, Dec 29, 2003.

  1. Apr 2, 2005 #61 of 165
    richierich

    richierich AKA PLASMAMANIAC

    955
    0
    Jul 10, 2002
    Peachtree...
    All I know is that I had severe pixellation/freezing problems and I ran SpinRite data recovery software on Jan. 27, 2005 and ever since then I have not had a single problem, my unit runs a little faster and runs about 8 to 10 degrees cooler. It had an unrecoverable sector and several other bad sectors that it cleaned up with backup sectors and restored the data from those bad sectors. I highly recommend it to anyone with pixellation problems and particularly if you don't want to lose your recordings. I definitely believe that the OS has been pushed to the max and is very fragile and a bad sector can cause alot of problems. Removing bad sectors seems to have solved all of my problems. The heat buildup is caused by having to read many times a bad sector. The unit is running in hyper mode which causes the heat buildup. I am now running about 38C-41C and before it was over 48C. For some reason unknown to me my guide runs faster and Season Passes takes less time.
     
  2. Sep 29, 2005 #62 of 165
    Matt Ottinger

    Matt Ottinger New Member

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    Sep 29, 2005
    You all seem very knowledgable about this stuff, let me ask if anyone can give me information about this little oddity.

    I have a unit that was giving me most of the standard symptoms of a hard drive failure, as described in the excellent initial post here. Stuttering, freezing, pixilation, loud mechanical clicking, pretty much the works. It got to the point that it would only work for a few hours after a reboot before it would freeze again.

    So I bought another hard drive. When it arrived, I figured I'd give the original drive that proverbial "one last chance" and replace it after the next freeze, which I thought would be later that day.

    That was nearly two weeks ago. Seriously, I've done nothing, and it seems to be working just fine. As tempting as it it to personify our units, it's way too easy to say that the original drive saw the replacement arrive and decided to get its act together. But I'm guessing there's a better answer than that.

    I'm not knowledgeable, but I am teachable if you use small enough words. Am I living on borrowed time, or could this thing have more or less repaired itself?
     
  3. Sep 29, 2005 #63 of 165
    richierich

    richierich AKA PLASMAMANIAC

    955
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    Jul 10, 2002
    Peachtree...
    Alot of times it can be caused by a bad power supply which is producing marginal power which can cause these same symptoms and even emit the clicking sound which then everyone thinks that is the hard drive and off they go to replace the unit or the hard drive. Have you done anything to alter your power source. Sometimes even battery backup units can cause the power supply not to have enough power to fully activate or power up the hard drives which causes the same symptoms.
     
  4. Nov 6, 2005 #64 of 165
    Voyagerfl

    Voyagerfl New Member

    5
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    Aug 15, 2005
    Pioneer DVR-57H / Channel Changing Problems !

    Sometimes when I try to change channels....the channels either change very slow...like after 20 to 30 to 60 seconds...or longer....or stops responding completly..

    I am not experiencing and freezing if the images.
    Have checked and moved the IR cables


    I have experimented with the Cable Box, Pioneer DVR-57H, IR, connections, etc...
    And the only thing that seems to correct the problem is unplugging the DVR-57H
    and re-booting it.

    Anyone else experience this ??

    This was a very expensive machine and I did take out an extended warrenty so maybe I need to take it in..........But boy you hate to do without it....
     
  5. Nov 7, 2005 #65 of 165
    JadziaDax

    JadziaDax A Member

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    Jan 24, 2005
    This has become a problem since the latest upgrade of the TiVo software. I set TiVoToGo to download 2 or 3 shows to one of my computers on the network, and when I check later, the TiVo is in need of being rebooted as it has completely frozen. And sometimes the downloads never complete.

    It never freezes/stutters/crashes/clicks during regular viewing or during recordings. It only seems to freeze after setting up a string of downloads on the TiVoToGo software.

    When I asked this question on the TiVo website's help forum, someone was very quick to tell me that I most definitely have a harddrive problem. My machine is not even a year old, and this never happened before September. It never crashes/freezes any other time. And if I download only one show, it doesn't crash/freeze.

    Is anyone else experiencing this type of problem with the 7.2.something update that happened in September? Or am I alone in this issue?
     
  6. Nov 7, 2005 #66 of 165
    richierich

    richierich AKA PLASMAMANIAC

    955
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    Jul 10, 2002
    Peachtree...
    I believe the problem is processor related. When they went with the latest software download they reconfigured the database and there can be a problem with older recorded shows versus current recorded shows because of the way they are housed in the database, 2 different structures. That is why they ask you to purge everything and start over because of the new structure. That is my best guess. Also, if the processor is very busy and it encounters a new command via the remote it just stores that command in the task queue until it is freed up of that current task and can handle the next task in the queue, so it is not that it doesn't acknowledge your task but that it is delayed in handling that task until it get higher priority tasks out of the way.
     
  7. Nov 7, 2005 #67 of 165
    JadziaDax

    JadziaDax A Member

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    Jan 24, 2005
    And what if everything I'm downloading is current (new since the last upgrade)?

    I witnessed the image slowdown to the point where the image froze on the screen. At this point, I had not touched the remote or anything else. Then, only after the freeze, did I hit something on the remote to see if it would respond. Of course it didn't. The only thing that worked was unplugging the TiVo from the wall.

    I will certainly try purging the entire system and see where that leads me. It would really be a bad thing if my 6 month old TiVo is suffering from a bad harddrive already, so I hope you're right.
     
  8. Nov 9, 2005 #68 of 165
    richierich

    richierich AKA PLASMAMANIAC

    955
    0
    Jul 10, 2002
    Peachtree...
    You have 2 tuners working. Even if you are viewing one tuner/channel, the other one can be helping to cause the problem. If you experience problems such as has been reported, go to the INFO button and change tuners and then set that tuner to a non-existent channel such as 3 or 4 and then see if your problem goes away. If it is related to an overworked processor, then that should cause your problem to go away. If not then you may have a bad hard drive. Also, if you are not plugged directly into a power source and are using a battery backup system, etc. unplug from that system and go directly into the power outlet and see if that changes things. I have seen that this can work in some situations.
     
  9. Nov 9, 2005 #69 of 165
    ABTsportsline

    ABTsportsline New Member

    16
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    Jan 5, 2005
    Bellevue, WA
    ok, i've read through this thread, and found out information that i didn't want to hear.....

    but i still have a question. i have a series 2 80 hour with a weaknees kit piggybacking a 120 Gb drive... at any rate the tivo is not quite 2 years old.... and i got the problems starting....

    first thing was the thing rebooted itself, and it stays on the "Welcome, powering up...." screen. this is what threw me - no one really mentioned that here. i thought if the hard drive fails you won't even get that far?

    i get the clicking - it happens rarely though - like maybe once every five minutes. a big problem here is which drive is it? how do i know?

    i definitely want to save everything i have, and know what i am doing with computers, so i plan on cloning whichever drive it is.... but don't know which drive it is. the drives are so close together, i can't tell which one is clicking. Is it safe to say the main TIVO drive is bad? how will i know that the next drive i put in won't go bad immediately?

    thanks!
     
  10. Nov 10, 2005 #70 of 165
    ABTsportsline

    ABTsportsline New Member

    16
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    Jan 5, 2005
    Bellevue, WA
    i guess my other quetsion is if my hard drive is bad, how do i save the information on it? i can't just slave this drive on my computer can i? if the drive is "clicking" and stuff...?
     
  11. Nov 10, 2005 #71 of 165
    richierich

    richierich AKA PLASMAMANIAC

    955
    0
    Jul 10, 2002
    Peachtree...
    The clicking can be caused by a hard drive going bad or by a bad power source. If you don't have enough power to successfully boot up the drives, then it will hang with that message. I had it plugged into a an APC battery backup system and knowing that a bad power source can cause problems that mimic a bad hard drive condition, I unplugged it and ran it straight into the wall socket. That corrected the problem. There is even a way to adjust the power supply to give you more or less power because there is a window or range of power that it needs. If it is less or more than that range it will cause problems.
     
  12. Nov 10, 2005 #72 of 165
    thehepcat

    thehepcat New Member

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    Jan 9, 2002
    585
    How about pixelation during playback - only occasionally, and never during live viewing? Unit is a Toshiba SD-H400, about 14 months old.
     
  13. Nov 11, 2005 #73 of 165
    ABTsportsline

    ABTsportsline New Member

    16
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    Jan 5, 2005
    Bellevue, WA
    ^^ ?

    i don't think it would be a power supply problem as the tivo has been working fine for a long time - i haven't changed anything on it since i got it when i added the 2nd drive and weaknees kit.... but that was like two years ago.

    i *doubt* it is the power supply, so how do i recover the files on the Hard Drive if it is clicking?

    and how do i plug in the power directly to the wall socket or adjust the PS voltage?
     
  14. Nov 19, 2005 #74 of 165
    ABTsportsline

    ABTsportsline New Member

    16
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    Jan 5, 2005
    Bellevue, WA
    two week bump...
     
  15. Nov 20, 2005 #75 of 165
    richierich

    richierich AKA PLASMAMANIAC

    955
    0
    Jul 10, 2002
    Peachtree...
    I can give you a link to another website that will explain how age can cause a power supply to gradually get to a point of degradation gradually where it will not generate enough power to adequately power up the hard drives which mimics the hard drive failure symptoms even the clicking noise. You take your power cord from your Tivo and just plug it straight into the wall socket if it is not plugged into it that way now. Are you using a battery backup system? How is it getting power?
    If it is a bad hard drive that is getting ready to fail or die, you might be able to recover the data long enough to offload it by running SpinRite data recovery software against on your PC. I have written several lengthy posts about SR and how it works so do a search on my posts or do a search on Spinrite. Also, do a search on power supply or PM me for the link.
     
  16. Dec 19, 2005 #76 of 165
    f4phantomii

    f4phantomii New Member

    35
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    Jan 13, 2004
    Coastal...
    OK...here's another one to throw at you folks.....

    I had a TiVo series 1 (Philips unit, I think) that I added an 80GB drive to. After about 6 months to a 1 year of use, it began more of what I'd call a "stumble" than a pause/freeze/stutter.

    Basically the picture pauses just for a split second and continues. Audio stays in sync just fine. It occurs maybe every once in a while..sometimes a couple times a show, usually less. The closest thing I can think of to compare it to is when a DVD swtiches layers on older players. You get this brief pause, just long enough to for you to begin to think half of an "uh-oh" before it continues.

    As time went on, it seemed to become more frequent. But about that time I sold that unit and bought a Series 2 unit for the HMO capabilities. I immediately added a 100GB drive to it.

    After about 18 months of use, the same problem is showing up again.

    Over the life of this unit, I've probably recorded thousands of hours of TV. I think we have nearly 50 season passes set up, plus lots of wish lists. Can't hardly watch "Live" TV as it's always recording something. I'm on normal analog cable, no converter.

    In any case, I have wondered if perhaps the filesystem is getting fragmented. That's what it feels like....as if there isn't a drive hardware problem, but just enough of a brief pause while it has to go to a far-away area of the drive to pick up where it left off. It really is very slight, not even a full second. But it's annoying, and it seems to continue to get worse, which would fit with the fragmentation theory.

    I've maybe only ever had it crash once, temps are usually around 40C. Other than that, it doesn't really act up.

    Any thoughts on this, or is my theory total nonsense?

    -Michael
     
  17. Dec 20, 2005 #77 of 165
    timckelley

    timckelley TCFer

    28,016
    139
    Oct 15, 2002
    Austin, TX
    My series one has been pixelating and stuttering, and it's getting worse and worse. It's practically unwatchable now. :(
     
  18. Jan 9, 2006 #78 of 165
    docsavagedp

    docsavagedp New Member

    2
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    Jan 9, 2006
    I am have a problem with my new HR10-250. My old RCA HD reciever (no Tivo) worked just fine using component in. My HR10-250 however frequently pauses the restarts. I also noticed that when watching the preview loops on channel 100, the pause will happen in the same spots. When I rewind the pauses are recorded. I have only had this thing for 2 days and not sure what I can do to fix it.
    The Directv installer will be out soon maybe he will have a fix? LOL? Based on what Ive read here, I have to take the HD out and run Spinrite or replace it? :confused:
     
  19. Jan 9, 2006 #79 of 165
    richierich

    richierich AKA PLASMAMANIAC

    955
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    Jul 10, 2002
    Peachtree...
    How long have you had it? You can have it replaced under warranty. I would make sure that it is not caused by input problems. Hard drive problems normally demonstrate pixellation, stuttering, etc.
     
  20. Jan 12, 2006 #80 of 165
    docsavagedp

    docsavagedp New Member

    2
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    Jan 9, 2006
    RR, what do you mean by "Input Problems"? Should i buy monster cables?

    I called Cust Support and they are sending me a new one. Wow I just bought this one! I hope I dont get one that does the same! :mad:

    Have you or anyone else actually seen this problem corrected via replacement of unit or HDD?
     

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