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TiVo Mini setup - Pain in the ass

Discussion in 'TiVo Mini' started by jmpage2, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. lessd

    lessd Active Member

    7,695
    5
    Jan 23, 2005
    CT
    I solved the problem of the red circle my Mini saw with my new TP-4, I had two TP-2 units that I wanted combined into my new TP-4, so I copied the shows from the 2 TP-2 units and moved over the season passes, all seemed good but I left the cable cards in the two TP-2s during the time I was moving the programs. I was worried that my new TP-4 had a problem working with the Mini and I would have to do this all over again. I than moved one cable card from one of the TP-2 TiVos to my new TP-4, activated the card with Comcast (took 2 minutes), did a call home, than after that was finished rebooted the TP-4 and rebooted the Mini, guess what the Mini now could see all three TP-4s. The Mini will not work with a TP-4 without an activated cable card, simple as that. (at least for me) TiVo should tell its customers that (if as I found, it is true)
     
  2. justen

    justen Gadget Geek

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    May 1, 2002
    San Francisco
    Interesting. I wonder if it's (easily) possible for TiVo to move up the forced update to before pairing? If I remember correctly, mine required an update and a restart before I could even complete Guided Setup, but it was definitely after pairing.

    I've always wondered how adaptable the TiVo OS truly is, given the difficulties and delays with the HD UI, Stream, dynamic tuner functionality, etc. Linux is obviously quite flexible, but the TiVo "apps" built on top of it are fifteen years old now, no? I'm sure most of that (or, actually, all of that) has been modified over the years, but that likely makes things more difficult, especially depending on how well things were documented over the years.

    All of that to say, I would love to be a fly on the wall during some of TiVo's product engineering meetings! But I'd almost bet there was just something funky with the way that Mini was provisioned in TiVos systems?
     
  3. jmckenna7

    jmckenna7 New Member

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    Mar 23, 2013
    Just bought a second Mini at Best Buy. Activated just fine again. Man, a bad mini really messes up your week. I only suffered for 3 days though. Poor Todd had an even worse experience with the support.

    What compounded my frustration is that I got FiOS installed last week and went through same support nightmare with Verizon getting a cablecard to work. The FiOS tech went through 4 cablecards over the course of 3 days and left me with no tv. It wasn't until I took matters into my own hands and got a self-install cablecard from a Verizon store and things worked right away. Funny how my Tivo Mini experience mirrored cablecard experience. I'm just glad I can relax now.
     
  4. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    Well, from the "I just can't win" dept., I went to Best Buy without checking stock online first... apparently of the 6 BB's within ~10mi of me, only one of them carries the mini, and it wasn't the one I picked. Oh well, I went there in the first place because I wanted to go to a restaurant nearby for dinner, so it wasn't a complete loss.

    I can't get too upset at TiVo about all the time I've wasted since I brought the bulk of that upon myself. Although, it is ridiculous that they haven't been able to determine what the problem is. I'm going to call tomorrow and ask them (again) to deactivate at least one of the minis and let me reactivate it. I debating whether to abuse the "change service number" facility Dan mentioned in an attempt to shake something loose, but I'd need a TSN to temporarily transfer my service to, and it just doesn't seem worth the risk.

    BTW, as I said somewhere in the novel I've written on this thread, I can see the mini's information on the XL4 under settings->help->multiple tivos->streaming->multi-room advanced help. The S/W version is 20.2.2-01-6-A92. It does seem like a mistake that it apparently only downloads the update after you get through GS though. Still, my money is on the problem being with my account rather than with the mini software.
     
  5. justen

    justen Gadget Geek

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    May 1, 2002
    San Francisco
    My Mini has 20.2.2.1-01-6-A92. As I said earlier, it was purchased from Best Buy, and had to run a software update after pairing but before Guided Setup could complete.
     
  6. lessd

    lessd Active Member

    7,695
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    Jan 23, 2005
    CT
    Change of service number (on the TiVo web sight) will not ever work for the Series 4, even within the first 30 days.
     
  7. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    so, i successfully talked them into deactivating one of my minis and re-activating it. I booted it up, went through GS, and... same problem. :(

    I hung up and was ready to head to BB, but before i did that I pressed left arrow a couple times to get back to the screen where it calls in. I've done this before, and it doesn't actually appear to call again, it just lets you do select to continue, you can't even go left anymore. However, this time I got "Tivo Service Required" with instructions on how to activate.

    Excitement! Having seen the same thing for the past 9 days I'm willing to consider any change in behavior a good change. Maybe this is the propagation delay in action - I'm hoping the initial "cancel" took a few minutes to propagate so it didn't see it on the initial call, and maybe in a few more minutes it will be re-activated... at least that's my hope. On tivo.com it says "We're still processing your activation", although I know people have said their minis have been active even when the web site says that.

    I'm rebooting again, I know everyone is on the edge of their seat :)
     
  8. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    Well, at least the "propagation delay" part of my theory was correct - after a few more calls it realized it was activated... I held my breath as I picked the name, but alas, it's back in the same old state. Time to go to BB, I guess.

    I do see my case is now "escalated to L3" vs L2. which is nice, but I wish it would have happened more quickly.
     
  9. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    I am simply not meant to have a working Mini.

    To prevent a repeat of last night's fiasco, I go to bestbuy.com, add a couple minis to my cart, select pick-up at the store where it's in stock, go through checkout and:

    "We're sorry, these items are no longer available for immediate store pickup at the location you've selected: Tivo - Mini"

    Hahahaha - I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried. I can page through 3 pages of stores (looks like 100+ mi by the end) and none of them show it in stock.
     
  10. lessd

    lessd Active Member

    7,695
    5
    Jan 23, 2005
    CT
    I had this problem (with using the Best Buy web sight) and called the store that the web sight said was in stock and they put one aside for me (a week ago) no problem. I was in my West Hartford Best Buy today (for a non TiVo reason) and they had the Mini in stock in the theater section of the store.
     
  11. jmpage2

    jmpage2 New Member

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    Jan 20, 2004
    Yeah Todd you should just call them, give them the SKU # and they can tell you if they actually have them on the shelf v
     
  12. sbiller

    sbiller Active Member

    1,915
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    May 10, 2002
    Tampa, FL
    Picked up a Mini at the Clearwater, FL Best Buy store around 6p this evening for my mom's 3rd bedroom which currently has a Bright House Networks cable box. It was the last Mini in the store and it took the CSR about 5 minutes to locate it in the stockroom.

    The Mini setup was extremely pain free. I activated it online with product lifetime service. I updated the settings to allow 2-tuners. She's not a heavy DVR user and having 2-tuners available on her XL4 is sufficient. She already has a Mini in her Master Bedroom.

    I was surprised to see the XL4 phoning home automatically after I activated the Mini. I think this might be an automatic step TiVo put in place to improve the activation process.

    I waited the 15 minutes and connected the Mini to the 3rd bedrooms Coax. I already had setup the house for MoCA with the help of Bright House Networks when I installed the first Mini. The Mini also automatically started connected to TiVo when it detected the MoCA network. I don't recall if that was in place when I set-up the first Mini. It easily completed the process and I had live TV on the Mini in less than 30 minutes. Very pain-free compared to the hassle of pairing a CableCARD, tuning adapters, etc.
     
  13. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    I did call the store and was told they didn't have any - I didn't ask if they sold out or if they never had any to begin with. When I asked the guy at the store I went to last night he looked up the SKU and it said it wasn't being carried at that store. They did have a whole TiVo display with premieres, slide remotes and wireless adapters so I was a bit surprised they wouldn't carry the mini. I'm going to call TiVo tomorrow and ask them to overnight me replacements.
     
  14. jmpage2

    jmpage2 New Member

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    Jan 20, 2004
    Good plan Todd. Good luck.
     
  15. jmckenna7

    jmckenna7 New Member

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    Mar 23, 2013
    Just had to call Tivo again because I never got a shipping label emailed to me. I told customer service that the Tivo I am shipping back is definitely defective as I have successfully activated two Mini's after giving up on the defective one. The agent didn't seem to understand why I wanted him to make a note of that. He figured since it was already an RMA it was defective, and he did not see the need to confirm anything. He eventually said he was going to make a note of it, but I think it was to appease me. Oh well. I was just trying to help their troubleshooting process for future calls.
     
  16. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    I got Tivo to overnight me a new Mini (edit: which will be here tomorrow (Tues)).

    I have a slightly bad feeling about this since the new mini is showing on tivo.com as being activated on 3/12 like the original one... that makes me afraid they did some kind of transfer instead of a new activation and whatever problem existed may persist. hopefully i'm just being paranoid.
     
  17. Digital Man

    Digital Man Member

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    Jan 2, 2013
    I think you have earned the right to be paranoid! :)

    DM
     
  18. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    I wish I could tell you that paranoia was misplaced, but I now have three non-functioning minis.
     
  19. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

    37,454
    166
    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    That sucks. My contact at TiVo said they alerted someone higher up in the support team to this thread and that they were going to contact you guys directly. Have you got any emails or private messages from anyone at TiVo?
     
  20. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

    180
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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    I have not, but I definitely appreciate that - thanks! I'm sure they'd like to get to the bottom of this before it happens to more people.

    One BB near me shows it in stock now but by the time I got home and tried this one the wife had dinner almost ready so I couldn't make it out there. Maybe tomorrow...

    Although, I'm sitting here debating whether it's worth risking $150 to try to activate the RMA'd box myself now that its sub has definitely been cancelled. Even when they "deactivated" it, it just moved to a different section of my account on tivo.com and then it moved back with the original activation date intact, just like when they swapped the boxes. So, some state associated with that subscription has been preserved, and maybe that includes whatever bad state is preventing it from working. Activating the old box might give me a clean slate... or maybe there's still some state associated with that S/N and I'll just be out the cash and have to try to get that back too.
     

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