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Think I need a new Hard Drive - should I go thru Tivo or elsewhere?

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by Geminis076, Dec 30, 2008.

  1. Geminis076

    Geminis076 New Member

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    Dec 30, 2008
    Hello. Based on research sounds like my Tivo's hard drive has gone to a better place. The first set of recent issues were recording related, would say no signal found when there really was one. Finally it settled on an endless loop of "Welcome, Powering up" to "Almost there", then back to "Welcome, Powering up". Have tried several times, and it just stays stuck on this loop and never advances past "Almost there". So based on research it sounds like I need to replace the Hard Drive.

    I'm wondering if I should even bother contacting Tivo, or if I should just go ahead and order a kit from the only two suggestions I've seen:

    www.dvrupgrade.com and www.WeaKnees.com

    Anyone know what options Tivo can offer, or if I would get a cheaper deal through the 2 websites mentioned? I've seen YouTube video on how to replace it, I feel I can do it. Here's my info to help answer my questions:

    2005 Tivo Series 2 , model TCD540040 with a Lifetime Sub., No longer under warranty

    Thanks for any info.
     
  2. richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
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    Jan 4, 2003
    Welcome to the forum...sorry it's under not so good circumstances. DVRUpgrade and Weaknees offer some good options, but they are fairly spendy compared to a DIY fix which would be the least expensive and quickest.

    You'll just need to buy a new/bare hard drive (probably larger than what you have now). I haven't worked on an S2 for years, but I'm sure someone here can recommend a good drive or a quick search will probably turn up some suggestions. Then you can image it using Instant Cake (comes with instructions) and ta-dah, you're back in business. Your lifetime sub is tied to your motherboard, so no worries there.

    Between the hard drive and IC I wouldn't think you'll spend more than $75 and maybe an hour on a Saturday afternoon.

    TiVo will be happy to sell you a refurb but I'm guessing that would cost more. A call couldn't hurt though.
     
  3. barbeedoll

    barbeedoll New Member

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    Sep 26, 2005
    I have 11 TiVos and have had only a couple of hard drive failures or desire to expand the capacity of the hard drive over the years.

    I've had great luck with http://www.newreleasesvideo.com/hinsdale-how-to/

    They offer either a hard drive and colored instructions for you to replace the hard drive yourself (very easy to do, and I'm not the techno-geek some are) or they will allow you to send in your unit and they will do it for you.

    Barbeedoll
     
  4. barbeedoll

    barbeedoll New Member

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    Sep 26, 2005
    P.S. The hard drives come loaded with all the TiVo software that you need, and if your current drive isn't totally fried they can often transfer over your Season Passes, shows, etc.

    Barbeedoll
     
  5. Sapphire

    Sapphire Xtal substance

    42,164
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    Sep 9, 2002
    New Jersey
    I would also recommend them.
     
  6. tivoupgrade

    tivoupgrade Sponsor

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    Chicago, IL...
    One thing you might want to consider doing is removing the hard drive from your TiVo, connecting it to a PC and running diagnostics on the drive so you can definitively determine that the problem is the hard drive.

    From your description of the problem, it is likely to be a hard drive problem, but that is not always the case.

    Lou
     
  7. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    Feb 27, 2005
    PA
    It's worth a call. My S2DT fell victim to a lightning strike (the warranty doesn't cover lighting) and I only paid about $50 for an out-of-warranty exchange.
     
  8. robomeister

    robomeister DVD TiVo Expert

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    Feb 4, 2005
    Beltsville, MD
    Also, check out www.mfslive.org for more info on backing up and restoring drives. This site has the most up to date info on upgrading your TiVo. I've used this site to upgrade a bunch of TiVos.

    One thing to remember, you'll need a working software image of your TiVo models hard drive. If you don't have a working drive image, you'll need to either get a Instant Cake (IC) for your TiVo model, or ask nicely in the Upgrade forum for an image. Someone will probably send you an Private Message (PM) with a link to the image.

    Good luck,
    robomeister
     
  9. Geminis076

    Geminis076 New Member

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    Dec 30, 2008
    Wow, thanks for all the helpful info & suggestions so far! I'll give Tivo a call today and decide on what to do based on what they say. But I'll definitely consider and look into all the suggestions everyone has offered.

    Feel free to post anything else, thanks again!

    P.S., I just edited my Tivo purchase year. It's 2005 and not 2003, so really not that old after all =\ .
     
  10. Geminis076

    Geminis076 New Member

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    Dec 30, 2008
    Okay, so just got off the phone with Tivo and was told that they would mostly just give me a different machine and it would cost $149.00 and would include one way shipping cost.

    I'm not very tech savvy, I know a thing or two and I am not intimidated by technology. I am a good fabricator and based on what I've seen online it doesn't look hard at all - yes I would be very careful. So now the next step is to shop around and research more "How to" 's.

    Thanks!
     
  11. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

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    Dallas, TX
    I just got a pre-formatted hard drive from WeaKnees.
    Sure, I could most likely buy a blank HD and use WinMFS, I just didn't feel like doing the work myself. :)
     
  12. Geminis076

    Geminis076 New Member

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    Dec 30, 2008
    Just thought I'd post an update in case anyone is curious :p. I went ahead and ordered from DVRupgrade.com (80GB), and just replaced my hard drive last night. It was very easy to do, I did get a little stuck on unplugging the cables/connections, weren't coming out as easily as I had thought. But after that the rest was a piece of cake.

    Thanks for everyone's input :D .
     
  13. richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
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    Jan 4, 2003
    Bummer that things went south, but glad to hear that your TiVo is up and running again. Nice work. :up:
     
  14. degobahjunk

    degobahjunk New Member

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    Jan 10, 2009
    Hi, I have almost the same stats as Geminis076 but mine is a 2004 Tivo Series 2 , model TCD540040 with a Lifetime Sub., No longer under warranty. I think I need to replace the hard drive, but i don't know what a "working software image of your TiVo models hard drive" even means. Sorry, not technically oriented. I did, however, swap out the RAM on my laptop so I think if i got good thorough directions I could DIY the hard drive myself. Is there a hard drive for sale that is sort of "all there?" I wouldn't have to hook it up to my computer, etc. Just do a simple swap of the old one? Is that even possible? Thanks for any help. I've had 4 trouble-free years & just don't want to part with it! Can't watch TV without my TiVo. Thanks! -Julie
     
  15. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

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    May 1, 2006
    Dallas, TX
    Yes! DVR Upgrade and WeaKnees have hard drives that you just swap out.
     
  16. moonscape

    moonscape Member

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    SF Bay Area
    the best option i found was dvr_dude on ebay. the guy is =great= and his prices are so much better. i've purchased from him - he has 100% positive feedback (deserved) and if what you need isn't listed, you can message him.

    highly recommended.
     
  17. ahipsher

    ahipsher Tivo Fan

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    Oct 29, 2008
    Indiana
    I too was pleased with the pricing and the hard drive I got from dvr_dude on ebay. I highly recommend. He has a 160GB for $85 , 320GB for $100, and 500GB for $140. Just tell him the model when ordering.

    Aaron:)
     
  18. Geminis076

    Geminis076 New Member

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    Dec 30, 2008

    Hi, I think you're asking about doing what I just did. Just replacing the old hard drive with a new drive, right? In my case it was just easier to purchase an internal hard drive that was already programmed and set up to work with my Tivo right away.
     
  19. Geminis076

    Geminis076 New Member

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    Dec 30, 2008
    Forgot to add this. Here's the video I used for reference, though it's really pretty simple and the instructions that came with new hard drive were fine too - it's just nicer to have a visual. The Tivo model in the clip is different, however the insides were set up the same, for the most part:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ca5EUGZsqvU

    Keep us posted and good luck :) .
     
  20. degobahjunk

    degobahjunk New Member

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    Jan 10, 2009
    Thanks steve614, moonscape, ahipsher, & Geminis076,

    All great info! I think i'm going to go for the easy formatted option. I checked all the sellers you listed. Great options! Thanks! Geminis076, funny you sent me that link! I just found that last night on YouTube and was watching it at about 2am! Also found that 30 second fast forward TiVo remote hack! Tried it & it worked! Now I just hope it doesn't mess up anything else.

    I think I might try DVR_Dude on eBay. I do a lot of eBay anyway & he seems to have great feedback. Plus I can get more GB's for the same $$.

    I'll let you know if my cartography/accounting skills help at all with the hard drive swap! :)

    I really am so appreciative that you were kind enough to help me out. I almost threw out my Series 2. What a waste that would have been!

    -Julie
     

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