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Old 06-27-2014, 09:58 AM   #31
tivoboy
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When one does this, and has shows still on the primary initial drive. Is there any relatively elegant way of maintaining access to the current shows? Could one put this in an external and then flip flop at times with a reboot?
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Old 06-27-2014, 05:09 PM   #32
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No elegant way. You would have to open the case and flip drives. You can use some of the other utilities that can transfer shows from TiVo to PC as long as the copy protection bit is not set. You can then transfer them back on to the new drive.
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Old 06-27-2014, 06:20 PM   #33
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For anyone having issues with adding an Expander drive (WD), to a Roamio from an older system, Tivo support has confirmed it is a known issues (since April!).

My S3 HD died after almost 7 workhorse years, where I had a MyDvrEx 1TB hooked up, but when I worked out a deal with Tivo for a new Roamio basic (I only record OTA so having 4 tuners was very attractive to me), no matter what I did I could not get the drive to be seen.

Tivo support did say to their knowledge a new MyDvr works fine; just not an older one from a different Tivo box. I wonder if I were to hook that drive up to my Win7 laptop which has an eSATA port, if reformatting the drive back to FAT32 might provide me a workaround? Anyone have opinions on this I would love to hear it.

Thanks in advance and hope this helps anyone experiencing the same frustrating issue.
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Old 06-27-2014, 06:32 PM   #34
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An Opinion:
Probably if you zero out the first 64 blocks, this will make the drive look blank to the Roamio.

I suggest using iBored, because it can do a backup of any changes you make, and runs on Windows.
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Old 06-27-2014, 07:53 PM   #35
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I agree with telemark's opinion.

But I do wonder how far it goes to try to attach the drive. Does it recognize the drive as an approved drive and offer to initialize it and reboot the TiVo to finalize the attachment. Or does it recognize that it is already TiVo formatted and try to use the current setup and just add it to the TiVo.

If it is the latter, it could be that it is confused about the ending.
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Old 06-28-2014, 01:11 AM   #36
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The Roamio will not recognize the drive at all (even after multiple unplugs & boot ups). I'm thinking a quick format to clear the MBR back to an initialized FAT32 table might do the trick (especially after support told me that new drives work fine).

Thanks for the feedback!
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Old 06-28-2014, 03:50 AM   #37
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Hmmm. Does not recognize the drive at all. Could you post the full model number of the drive and the firmware revision you get from WD diagnostics. For the model need the info after the hyphen as well.
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Old 07-13-2014, 06:56 AM   #38
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If you aren't looking to open up and install a new HDD [and lose content on the old] is a 1tb WD external the only way to go or can you go higher TB's {roamio basic model} ... I'm a total newbie to the Tivo world and just got it at the end of last year for my b'day.
Is it the WD external hard drives that say "Tivo certified" on them or are other models of "My Book A/V " from WD ok? [like WDBABT0010HBK on $99 special online]
.
ps.. this is my first post, noob here be kind
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Old 07-13-2014, 08:38 AM   #39
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If you are looking for plug and play you will need the "TiVo certified" WD external hard drives.
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Old 07-13-2014, 11:12 AM   #40
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With the Roamio, just not a lot of reasons to use the external drive expansion esp since a 3tb drive can be dropped in with no prep work needed and now that there is a free 4tb option which does require a little work, the risk of the external drive is unnecessary.
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Old 07-15-2014, 01:52 PM   #41
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Thumbs up Externalize me~!~

Quote:
Originally Posted by eboydog View Post
With the Roamio, just not a lot of reasons to use the external drive expansion esp since a 3tb drive can be dropped in with no prep work needed and now that there is a free 4tb option which does require a little work, the risk of the external drive is unnecessary.
Yeah I know, but for a variety of reasons I'd rather do an external drive... and its usually running 85-95% so would have to lose stuff I haven't watched
It looks like its only 1tb WD's out there, so I'll try that for now and I'm assuming the risk you are talking about is something not getting recorded and not some fire hazard explosion thing right?

Just curious, why does a 4TB need to be 'prepped' and not a 3TB internal?
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:17 PM   #42
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Quote:
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Just curious, why does a 4TB need to be 'prepped' and not a 3TB internal?
Short answer: 4TB is far enough away from 3TB to break Tivo's assumptions.

Long answer:
The Roamio preps a drive by a simple formula / method of many fixed sized partitions, and 2 variable size partitions based on the drive size. Tivo didn't necessarily intend this to work with arbitrary drive sizes, aside from their chosen HD sizes. (500, 1TB, 3TB)

The map the formula (a formula designed for smaller drives) generates for a 4TB drive though, ends up needing 64bit addresses. This overflows some other Tivo software which only allocated 32bit addresses.

There are better 4TB maps that stay within 32bit addresses, but the auto-generated map is not one of those.

If Tivo wanted to support 4TB drives, it would be a one line change for them.

Last edited by telemark : 07-15-2014 at 08:55 PM.
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:36 PM   #43
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Quote:
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If Tivo wanted to support 3TB and 4TB drives, it would be a one line change for them.
Thanks thats nice to know... 1 line.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:00 PM   #44
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Doesn't the pro come with 3 TB?
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:51 PM   #45
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Doesn't the pro come with 3 TB?
Sorry, I was writing from memory. Thanks, corrected for now.

I'll check the calculated offsets when I get a chance, but the explanation is the same though.
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Old 07-15-2014, 09:24 PM   #46
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Quote:
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If Tivo wanted to support 4TB drives, it would be a one line change for them.
Is the $64K question a matter of now that workarounds have been made, if TiVo changes that "one line" to properly auto-partition could it break WK and other 4TB band-aid solutions?

It would suck if the "one line change for TiVo" couldn't be implemented due to the workarounds (if that's the right way to describe the matter).

How's the testing on the WD Purple PURX drive going? I have some erase/read/erase/verify tests I'd like to get a results for from you, using HDD Scan 3.3 and 8192 logical sectors per operation on your drive(s) if possible. At minimum the non-destructive read/verify tests could help me.
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Old 07-15-2014, 09:37 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by telemark View Post
If Tivo wanted to support 4TB drives, it would be a one line change for them.
Well, obviously don't limit it at 4 TB, since there are now 6 TB drives available.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nooneuknow View Post
Is the $64K question a matter of now that workarounds have been made, if TiVo changes that "one line" to properly auto-partition could it break WK and other 4TB band-aid solutions?
I have absolutely no info either way, but I suspect not.. as long as it can read the partitions, and doesn't think it's an unformatted drive..
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Old 07-15-2014, 10:10 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nooneuknow View Post
Is the $64K question a matter of now that workarounds have been made, if TiVo changes that "one line" to properly auto-partition could it break WK and other 4TB band-aid solutions?

It would suck if the "one line change for TiVo" couldn't be implemented due to the workarounds (if that's the right way to describe the matter).
The small change I mentioned would just restrict the formatter to stay within 32bits. This should not affect anything besides drives that need to be (re)formatted.

Quote:
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Well, obviously don't limit it at 4 TB, since there are now 6 TB drives available.
6TB may require proper 64bit support. If they haven't done it already, it would be changing variable declarations from 32bit size to 64bit size (assuming the relevant language used works that way).

Quote:
How's the testing on the WD Purple PURX drive going?
Drive is on the shelf. You should PM me tests you want done. And soon cause I only got it for the 4TB project which is about finished.
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Old 09-05-2014, 11:56 AM   #49
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I'm curious if anyone ever verified whether you can move an external drive from one Tivo to another by formatting it? I just received a Roamio Plus today and since I already own a WD MyBook DVR Expander which is connected to the old Series 3 I'll be replacing, why not user it on the Roamio Plus and save $120.. Any try it?
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Old 09-05-2014, 12:53 PM   #50
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Yes you can move it. You of course lose all recordings. (unless you transfer the ones that are not copy protected first) If you run into problems, might need to get a program that wipes out the first few sectors first and then connect it to the Roamio.
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Old 09-05-2014, 01:45 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Elkin View Post
I'm curious if anyone ever verified whether you can move an external drive from one Tivo to another by formatting it? I just received a Roamio Plus today and since I already own a WD MyBook DVR Expander which is connected to the old Series 3 I'll be replacing, why not user it on the Roamio Plus and save $120.. Any try it?
Unless the MyBook is pretty new or you don't value your recordings, I would suggest you don't use it. Sure, it's extra space, but if it's anywhere near as old as your Series 3, it's possibly on its last legs.
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Old 09-05-2014, 05:54 PM   #52
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Oh I've had the original WD DVR expander (orange ring) running non stop just fine on one of the new Roamio Pro units I installed last year for my Uncle and it's running as great as the day I bought it for him back in I think 2007. It's been used with a TiVo HD, a Moxi, a Comcast Cisco DVR, a Premiere, and now the Roamio Pro. I was concerned with how it would hold up in the Roamio with the thirteen activities going on at the same time. (Six tuners recording, playing back a pre recorded show, transferring a show to another TiVo, transferring a show from another TiVo, streaming four shows to mobile devices, and streaming a pre recorded show remotely to another TiVo, all at the same time without a problem.
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Old 09-05-2014, 06:16 PM   #53
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Of course, all hard drives work great...until they don't. Most hard drive failures are sudden, and usually fatal.
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Old 09-05-2014, 06:29 PM   #54
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True but the same can be said about a lot of things that fail suddenly without warning, including airplane fuselages and blood vessels.
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Old 09-05-2014, 07:19 PM   #55
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True but the same can be said about a lot of things that fail suddenly without warning, including airplane fuselages and blood vessels.
Which, like you expressed concern about, often let-go when bearing greater load, or are otherwise stressed. More tuners = more TB/yr workload, which would often take whatever unknown point the drive would fail in the future, left to the same use, and move it in the "sooner" rather than "later" direction, with it's new heavier/higher-stress use. But, since no completely accurate drive health monitoring mechanisms, or life gauges, exists, you are stuck not knowing. All you can do is watch for warning signs, and hope drive doesn't not have a sudden-death failure.

SMART is sometimes helpful. But, a TiVo doesn't even look at it unless you use KS54, or when booting/rebooting, it will quietly check the overall state (pass/fail), and merely put a FAIL result into the TiVo logs (TiVo can see a drive failed the status check, if you call and ask about a problem, and they view your logs). It's not going to pop up a warning on your TiVo saying it has a degraded below threshold SMART attribute value. So, unless you manually check a TiVo drive with KS54, the realtime monitoring functions are useless (but the attributes still change as the drive operates and detects things that have attributes).

If you are aiming for my level of awareness, pull the drive every so often, to connect to a PC, and run a full read test, then view the attribute values. You could also run some nondestructive benchmarking/performance tests to see if the drive is getting slow with age (inevitable), or has developed weak/slow sectors. Of course, besides being excessive, the handling and reseating of connections might create a failure that would otherwise not have occurred. So, even the most obsessive folk might just want to stick to the KS54 tests.

As a generalized rule: I suggest simply buying the right drive for the job, then doing all the tests, at least once, and hope you get 5 years out of it. Anything longer than 5 years is a gift, IMO.
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Old 09-05-2014, 08:03 PM   #56
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I only expressed concern because the new hard drives support 16 simultaneous streams at a time and I wasn't sure an 8 year old drive could handle it, and was pleased it can.
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Old 09-05-2014, 08:24 PM   #57
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Yeah... I suppose I'm just trying to be cheap.. I just don't want to spend another $130... so I figure I'd use my existing drive.. If I buy a 3TB drive does it matter which make/model I get these days?
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Old 09-05-2014, 09:55 PM   #58
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I only expressed concern because the new hard drives support 16 simultaneous streams at a time and I wasn't sure an 8 year old drive could handle it, and was pleased it can.
Why does everybody fall for this marketing, that has absolutely zero relevance for TiVo use, at all? I keep trying to stop these false assumptions, but my posts get buried by all the fallout I get for being technical (and there is no other way to explain it).

When drive mfg's say their drives support xx "streams", they aren't talking about the "streams" in the same context as TiVo's way of writing AV data to a drive. So far, the only DVR-like devices I'm aware of that use such streams, are true surveillance systems. In these scenarios, not only does each stream being recorded need to get every frame, the date/time stream that accompanies it needs to be spot-on accurate. Each stream is also being displayed, while recorded, making a 16 camera system require 32 streams. Don't have enough supported streams to use just one drive? Add more drives to the array to add more streams. This is where the AV-GP can't go, and Red NAS steps in (or the Purple for RAID host devices that work with WD's "allframe" which supports 32 streams). Since the Purple only has 1/3 the TB/yr rating of a Red NAS, you'd need more drives for the workload, or you'd need the cameras to me motion-activated, which is exactly the target market for the Purple drives. Still not enough, because you don't have motion activated cameras? Now there is the WD Red NAS Pro, at 7200RPM, for that.

TiVo never implemented the ATA AV Streaming feature set, which writes data using an entirely different algorithm. TiVo just writes it like any other data on the drive, using the same algorithms and error correction as if you were running your computer OS on it, or it was a second drive that you used for bulk storage or backup. This is why you can (and people have been) opting to save some money (used to be ~$100 difference versus ~$10 now), by getting plain "green" drives, like the EZRX, EARS, EADS, & other non-AV models.

With a TiVo, how much your drive can handle, before everything becomes too much, is limited by the rate at which the drive can internally write the data to the platters, in normal desktop drive mode, but also running in IDE compatibility mode (another potential bottleneck).

The ATA AV Streaming feature set is the base, upon which WD created "silkstream" and the newer "allframe" proprietary iterations, but backward compatible with the base feature set. But, the number of streams supported will be reduced if the host device doesn't use the full added functions in the proprietary additional extensions. Seagate has their own brand names for their enhanced proprietary iterations of the same base ATA standard.

It's almost always some of the members I least expect, to get hooked by this marketing bait. I just don't get it.

When it comes to a TiVo, the ONLY marketing speak that does really matter is the TB/yr rating, in conjunction with having a 24/7/365 rating, while the AV designation simply means the drive was designed around AV use, and, at minimum, supports the ATA AV Streaming base-standard, which tends to also include a year more of warranty. This gives you a better idea how much data the drive can handle, and how long it can do so for.

AnandTech has all the details on other brands. If you want the Seagate specifics, and other drive specifics, as well as comparisons, in the same classes, that's where you want to go get reading. A few days later, you'll have a migraine, and understand why I stick to WD, and don't factor in Seagate, in most threads. If TiVo goes Seagate exclusive, or I start using Seagate, that might change. I try not to play forum expert on a product I don't even use. The 500GB Seagate drives from my base Roamios never even got powered-up, before they hit the "original TiVo drive storage rack".
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:29 PM   #59
Keith Elkin
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I can confirm that I moved my WD MyDVR Expander drive from my old Tivo Series 3 to my new Roamio Plus without any problems. It didn't pop up like it recognized it but when I looked at the system settings I noticed it saw it as external storage... I went to Settings --> Remote Cable Cards & Devices --> External Storage and there it was.... It saw the drive but told me I had to reformat the drive since it was from a different Tivo... I did so, and my total recording capacity went from 150 hours to 350. Thanks for everyone's help!
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Old 09-06-2014, 07:10 AM   #60
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Congrats Keith enjoy filling it up
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