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Upgrade internal drive or just add USB

Discussion in 'TiVo Upgrade Center' started by Kirkinsd, Sep 2, 2012.

  1. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

    Feb 2, 2006
    And that about sums up my entire argument. You can show me all the statistics you want about whether a single Tivo drive will have a better chance of survival vs. two drives. The point is, you can't make any guarantees that drive A will have a shorter lifespan by itself or if it's paired with drive B. It might, but the impact will be minimal at best. Buying a hard drive is like rolling the dice. Sometimes you pick a winner and sometimes you roll craps.

    I've owned and modified literally dozens of Tivos over the past decade or so. The only drive failures I encountered were in single-drive configurations. Granted, the number of units used for comparison is relatively small for any test group, but this is what I experienced in real life.

    If using two drives is the only option available to you then all I'm saying is there's no compelling reason not to go with two drives. It's worked for me and lots of other Tivo owners.

    It took you long enough to finally agree with what I've been saying all along.;)
  2. lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

    Aug 31, 2003
    No one said it will, additional heat aside. That is the whole point. The TiVo most cetainly and definitely will, on average, irrespective of what you believe.

    What you are missing is that statement is precisely equal to saying the TiVo will not last as long. The only way an average TiVo with two drives can last as long on average as a TiVo with one drive is if the pairing Drive A with Drive B somehow makes them both last nearly twice as long on average.

    Again, that is the entire point. I do not know the rules of craps, but the odds of rolling any particular total on a pair of dice are perfectly well known. With an honest pair of dice, one will roll snake eyes every 36 throws on average, and one will roll boxcars precisely as often. Seven is by far the most common throw, since there are 12 different combinations by which one may obtain a seven, making the odds of rolling it 1:3. You are saying statistics don't matter and then with the next breath comparing it to a roll of the dice, which is purely statistical.

    Which again is not relevant to the discussion at hand. First of all, we would have to determine what the relative longevity of OEM versus after-market drives might be, and possibly make brand comparisons. If all the drives were perfectly identical, however, and we could find 100 people who like you have owned both single and dual drive TiVos, the majority of those people would have had two drive TiVos fail more than single drive TiVos.

    Think for a moment about what you re saying. You are saying that, somehow, if every one of those 2 drive TiVos had been split up into 2 TiVos, they would not have lasted as long.

    That is probably true, but it is a very different thing from saying a two drive TiVo is guaranteed, or even likely, to last as long as a 1 drive TiVo. Given the rather low failure rate of hard drives, putting two in a system is, as I said before, not a huge gamble. It's a good thing, too, because I have personally owned systems with up to 15 drives in them. Some companies have systems with hundreds of drives in them. Those systems typically have hard drive failures every few months, despite using drives with much greater MTBF ratings.

    I am not agreeing with what you said all along. I am saying your conclusion accidentally has merit, despite being based upon completely incorrect logic. It's not a good way to operate, but in this case the end result is tolerably acceptable.
  3. L David Matheny

    L David Matheny Active Member

    Jan 29, 2011
    SE Ohio
    As had already been pointed out, the odds of either of two identical drives failing are not "exactly double" the odds of one drive failing (my brain fart), but they are close for small values. If the odds of one failing during any month are (say) 1%, then the odds of at least one failing during that month would be (1 - 0.99^2) or 1.99%, which is nearly double.

    And if you use drives that have an 80% monthly failure rate or even an 80% yearly failure rate, I don't want any. Of course, if you pick a long enough time period, like 10 years, the failure rate could approach 100%.
  4. scole250

    scole250 Member

    Nov 8, 2005
    Goldsboro, NC
    If everyone is done arguing about the probability of disk failure, and this may have already been mentioned, but...
    1. upgrading the internal is easy.
    2. Not sure if you can add an external without buying Tivo's or using another service like Weaknees.
    3. Once you add an external, not sure if you can upgrade the internal yourself.

    I'd upgrade the internal first.
  5. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

    Feb 2, 2006
    1. Yes it is.

    2. I believe there's a list of external enclosures and external drives in a sticky thread somewhere that are compatible with S3 and later models. It's pretty much plug and play, but there's a menu option you have to select to add the drive, IIRC.

    3. You can certainly upgrade the internal drive beforehand. You'd have to divorce the external drive and probably lose any recordings if you wanted to upgrade the internal drive after adding an external one.
  6. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

    Feb 2, 2006
    That's not at all what I said. I said that the only drives I've had fail were in single drive configurations. It just happens that those single drives were OEM drives and not upgrades. Perhaps I should have stated that I've rarely had an upgraded drive fail, regardless of configuration.
  7. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC

    The original S3 can use externals other than the TiVo approved WD models.

    (it's a long story)

    The S3 HD, S3 HD XL, and all S4 machines have to use the WD, 'cause they got a very small list of of WD drive signatures and it has to be one of those few models or it won't accept it.

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