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Old 04-13-2014, 11:00 AM   #1
ToastyZ71
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Resolving issues with cable card and Comcast

So I'll try to keep this short, but it's been quite the ordeal with my new Roamio and cablecard(s) (first Roamio was deffective, would not get out of Guided Setup, first two cable cards were either unable to be paired or completely dead with 161-1 errors) Soo finally, on cablecard number 3, the tech on the phone with comcast (cable card support line) was able to activate the card. -getting Con:Y, but Val: was ?. Tech said it could take awhile for that to update and for me to get channels. I'm now getting everything but the premium channels (HBO, Showtime, STARZ, etc) and OnDemand programs. - attempts to watch both of these pushes me to the cable card grey/black screen.
Val: field never went to V, still is ?.

I called the cablecard line back, and the first tech I spoke with said the card was activated in their system for a 'Motorola' box, not a Tivo. He said he would change the information and we would be good. Next thing I know, I have NO channels and Con: field is back to No. he tried re-pairing hits, etc but then after about 20 min, he either hung up or the phone system did. I called back again, and this time the woman I talked to insisted that the card was active in the system and the card must be deffective. I couldn't get her to send any more hits, she said it could damage the card? She insisted on setting up a tech visit.

Finally, I called back one last time, and explained the issue yet again. At first, the tech said that the Data ID in the system did not match what I provided, and every time she tried to update it, it reverted to the incorrect one. She did send a couple hits, and after about 10 minutes, it finally has come back to Con:Y but Val: is still ?, and I am back where I started with the normal channels working and the premiums/OnDemand kicking to the CableCard screen.

Whew... I certainly tried to make that short, sorry!

So, recap - I'm getting Con:Y, but Val: ? and the techs I spoke with couldn't seem to get the Val field to be V, resulting in no premium channels and no OnDemand.

So now I am not sure what to do. I don't really want to have to get a new card - I don't think that the card is the cause? - The card is also already on the 6.25 firmware (motorola) so all 6 tuners are already working, so no fussing with getting that fixed. (not to mention the debacle of having the card deactivated by a tech trying to get it fixed)

Any suggestions?
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Old 04-13-2014, 04:12 PM   #2
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keep calling and play rep roulette.

My most recent experience, my Roamio took more than four calls over two and a half days before one of the "cablecard experts" was able to set me up correctly. Each call ended with "just wait a while and it'll be all set" or "Im not allowed to do anything more" or "i will roll a truck you must have a problem there" even though it was apparent they hadn't setup everything right.

I swear they must still run things on systems that use punchcards and magnetic core memory, or maybe they just hire homeless people off the streets and put them on the phones.
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Old 04-13-2014, 05:29 PM   #3
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Trust your gut. A truck roll won't help. It sounds like a Comcast issue.

Here is what I would try:
1) Call the Comcast Cablecard hotline on a weekday during the daytime
2) Call Tivo Support, they can usually get a conference call with Comcast support
3) Send an email to the Comcast Cares.
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Old 04-13-2014, 05:41 PM   #4
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Hah. Well somewhere last week I did send an email to the comcast cares address, but apparently I forgot which email address I sent it from. Just checked it and I got a response from someone, so I sent an email back explaining the issue. I'll have to call them on Monday, but I won't be at the Tivo to check it's status when I call. -It's worth noting that I did indeed get stuck calling the Cablecard hotline after 6PM CST every time, so yeah it seems like I was getting the regular activations department.



-should I presume that they just need to send another validation hit to the box, or is the account not set up right, perhaps?

Oh, and just as a precaution, I double checked the SNR and signal level - SNR was coming it at 34-39 on most channels, and signal at 90-100%, which I have seen is at the upper end or higher for best signal metrics, so I put a 4db cable tap inline to bring most channels to 30-35 SNR, and 88-95% - perhaps that will help.

Last edited by ToastyZ71 : 04-13-2014 at 05:50 PM.
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Old 04-13-2014, 05:43 PM   #5
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I had this happen with a Premiere. The cablecard CSR needed to have someone in their tech support group flip a code that they did not have access too. Keep complaining, reneg has it right.
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Old 04-14-2014, 03:33 AM   #6
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My experience was to get the billing department to authorize the premiere pay channels and all was good.
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Old 04-14-2014, 11:40 AM   #7
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Well, tech number one hit dead end and scheduled tech. Called Tivo support just to see if there was anything they could suggest, they conferenced comcast, relayed what i had said and that the cablecard was not paired, and left me on the line with comcast, as we speak. This is not looking good :/
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Old 04-14-2014, 12:53 PM   #8
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Well, still no luck, but I'm now no longer getting the cablecard activation screen on premiums or OnDemand, but still says channel unauthorized on premiums, and the OnDemand is now exhibiting the watch for 5 seconds then freeze symptoms. Conditional access still shows Val:? though. Argh.
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Old 04-14-2014, 03:13 PM   #9
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I've been through this many times with many TiVo's. Sometimes you just have to keep trying new cards. If that fails, then you have to send the TiVo back. My last Premiere was defective and a replacement unit took the pairing on the first try. I am picking up 2 new Roamio's on Wednesday, and I'm prepared for the worst.
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Old 04-14-2014, 04:42 PM   #10
ToastyZ71
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In prep for tech visit, i picked up 2 new cable cards. May try calling and activating one of those. (They're newer model cards, too)


... Nevermind, I totally didn't pay attention that they gave me S cards...

Last edited by ToastyZ71 : 04-14-2014 at 06:25 PM.
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Old 04-14-2014, 06:26 PM   #11
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... Nevermind, I totally didn't pay attention that they gave me S cards...
That's a problem.
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Old 04-14-2014, 06:28 PM   #12
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That's a problem.
Yeah. I took them back. Lady at the counter said "Oh? They told us they all work the same" ...oh geez
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Old 04-14-2014, 06:31 PM   #13
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Yeah. I took them back. Lady at the counter said "Oh? They told us they all work the same" ...oh geez
DOH!
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Old 04-14-2014, 07:28 PM   #14
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Yep. now to cross my fingers that the tech can fix it with a phone call, or he has another M-card
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Old 04-14-2014, 07:38 PM   #15
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Yep. now to cross my fingers that the tech can fix it with a phone call, or he has another M-card
You can call up your cable company and tell them to write in the work order for the tech to bring extra multistream CableCards with him.
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Old 04-14-2014, 10:24 PM   #16
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After about 3 calls trying to get the card paired, I called (877)761-5015, option 3. It is the Comcast National Repair number. Just tell them the problem you've been having pairing, and that you would like them to verify that all the information is correct for your TiVo and Cable Card, all 5 data values.
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Old 04-14-2014, 10:40 PM   #17
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Good luck, they were finally able to get my new Roamio up and running today. This is after loosing my Friday evening, a good chunk of Saturday and some of Sunday. I've practically memorized the pairing info from repeating it so many times. I should not be this hard.
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Old 04-14-2014, 10:49 PM   #18
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TEG, Thanks for that.

I called up and actually got to talk to someone, I figured they'd be closed already. The guy I talked to (first guy in all of this without an overseas accent!) took the info, looked at my account and said "wow" ... my account is apparently all a mess with cards added/removed/yada yada. He's going to have to clean up the account and get it straightened out, but seems to agree that it's an account/billing code issue. I've got his direct number and he's supposed to be calling me tomorrow. Fingers crossed.
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Old 04-15-2014, 06:53 AM   #19
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Good luck, they were finally able to get my new Roamio up and running today. This is after loosing my Friday evening, a good chunk of Saturday and some of Sunday. I've practically memorized the pairing info from repeating it so many times. I should not be this hard.

Sheesh, the things some people get off on!
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Old 04-15-2014, 07:35 PM   #20
ToastyZ71
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Weeeeeee!

I got a call back from Michael at Comcast while I was at work, saying that it should be all set and working. When I got home, I was able to verify that the card was paired successfully (Val:V) and all of the premiums and VOD are working. Michael was awesome to deal with, and also told me to keep his number in case I have cablecard issues in the future.

So, thanks for the tip on the national number, TEG, it was exactly what I needed. No truck roll for meeee!

Now to get my Mini's set up.
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Old 04-16-2014, 05:38 PM   #21
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For anyone trying to pair a cablecard, the only number to call should be the national repair line(888-824-8988). Either Rochelle X17316 or Michael X17716. My new Roamio is paired. The Comcast Activation line only were able to mess things up but Michael was able to see the problem immediately. Data ID was off, and a billing code had to be updated since the Roamio's have VOD capablility. He even told me NEVER call comcast directly for cablecard issues.
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Old 04-16-2014, 06:45 PM   #22
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I also spoke to Michael, but hesitated to post his direct number. My cablecard issue was exactly the same, the activation people couldn't get the right Data ID to stick in the system for some reason. He also cleaned up the monumental amount of partial month and weird charges that stemmed from having to swap the cable cards out. Ironically, I had gotten 3 different activation people to add the Tivo Premier code for the VOD at one time or another, but of course, without the card being paired, it didn't work.
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Old 05-10-2014, 12:56 PM   #23
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Thanks for the advice and Comcast phone number (National Repair Line) guys!!! it saved me. I swapped my SA Card to a new roamio 10 days ago and since have only received half my channels. Nothing requiring CP Authorization would come thru because the CC was not paired properly. I spoke to Allen and in less than 10 minutes everything was working properly!!! Thanks again, Allen, Toasty, TEG, HSW.

10 days of the worst tech support in my life and only a 10 minute fix!! Allen was absolutely great!!

How is Comcast still in business!?!?!
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Old 05-10-2014, 01:02 PM   #24
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How is Comcast still in business!?!?!
Lack of competition.
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Old 05-10-2014, 01:21 PM   #25
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And buying the politicians in power.
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Old 05-11-2014, 11:56 AM   #26
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Lack of competition.
Because the Cable consortium has basically allowed them to all develop separately and not have competition. It is only now that IPTV is actually making inroads into their service areas, that they are even thinking about changing. Of course you can't count FiOS (Verizon/Frontier) because they are part of the Cable consortium, but at&t, Century Link, and many local/independent phone companies are not, and they are actually making more of an impact that satellite was. Hopefully, TiVo can force Ericsson (formerly Microsoft) Media Room users to become compatible, or will produce an MMR compatible box so I can dump Comcast and move to my phone company's IPTV service.
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Old 09-13-2014, 09:26 PM   #27
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All of a sudden I'm not getting HBO channels (despite getting all other channels fine), so looks like I'm having this issue as well. I called the cablecard line and they said all info should be fine so told me to call the standard Comcast tech support - called them and they said they can't help so I need to call TiVo... contacted TiVo and they said to contact Comcast lol. Ridiculous.

Saw the National Repair line # 888-824-8988 on this thread so I'll give them a try - are they available/open on Sundays?
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Old 09-14-2014, 02:30 PM   #28
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...I should not be this hard.
Well the FCC allowed the cable industry to design the cablecard system we use today, and they clearly designed it to impair / impede its uptake and put up roadblocks such that consumers would NOT use it......Follow the money.
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