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View Poll Results: How often have you had to restart your S3 to fix a CableCard failure?
I never have to restart due to CC failure 214 79.26%
Less than Once per month 19 7.04%
About Once per month 8 2.96%
About Twice per month 6 2.22%
About Once per week 10 3.70%
More than Once per week 13 4.81%
Voters: 270. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-21-2007, 09:03 AM   #31
rcr2
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I've only been up for two days, so I'm wary of saying anything that would mess up my mojo and send my SA cards from Comcast to the 9th dimension and become possessed.
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Old 02-21-2007, 10:22 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcr2
I've only been up for two days, so I'm wary of saying anything that would mess up my mojo and send my SA cards from Comcast to the 9th dimension and become possessed.
I'm pleased you have been working well, but 2 days is not a reasonable sample period. Even at this stage in the failures, I can sometimes go as long as a week before I have one. Usually it is 2-3 days, but I once made it 8 days.
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Old 02-21-2007, 02:19 PM   #33
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Hence my caution. But, hey - thanks for the Murphy's Law hit. I'm sure I'll be down an out when I get home today now.
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Old 02-23-2007, 09:17 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lawnboy2

Also, follow the TiVo Cable Card installation instructions and install and get authorized first Card 1 and then Card 2, despite whatever your cable company operator might say. Then be sure to check the channels received by each Cable Card to make sure each card is working properly. Good Luck!
This step is a must! Do not let them install both at the same time. It will cause nothing but a headache and another visit from the cable company.

The cable guy who installed mine didnt want to wait, so he installed both at the same time even though i told him not too. Sure enough, both cards gave problems. The second guy that came out pulled both cards, rebooted Tivo, put the cards back in one at a time, and what do you know, it worked. Both cards had the right host number asscociated with it, so it was a matter of following the correct instructions.

Also, it depends on who you get at the head end how these work. More than a few CSR at the head end do not know how to properly configure these cards. It's kinda the luck of the draw. I had one CSR tell me that cable cards did not support HD nor Tivo, and i needed a STB

Mine have been up for 5 days now, and still working. Friend of mine has comcast and they worked from day one and have been for over a month.
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Old 02-23-2007, 11:19 AM   #35
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My Series 3 has been up since November with two Comcast Cable Cards and I have not had any problems. Even after the 8.1 update, everything is working smoothly. I couldn't be any happier with the cable card solution at this point in time.
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Old 02-23-2007, 11:30 AM   #36
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I've seen 2 cable card problems:

One was a week ago. I noticed that the Disney channel has very bad pixelation problems. With the other tuner it was OK. As I was trying different channels from the cable card testing menu the Tivo rebooted.

The second was yesterday evening. One tunner was on ABC HD from recording Lost the night before. It was showing a blank screen. I went back into the 30 min buffer and there was some soap opera (which shouldn't be airing in the evening). My guess is the Tivo lost the signal at some time during the day. Switching to another channel and back fixed the problem. Maybe Tivo should try to retune the channel automatically if the signal is down for more than an hour? I may have probably lost a recording if it was scheduled on the same channel.
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:26 PM   #37
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Lightbulb Bad CableCARDS?

Although I would admit that a CableCard could be damaged one way or another, the card itself is a relatively passive device. Nothing more than a couple decryption keys that the TiVo uses to process the encrypted streams. As other posters have pointed out, the problem almost always lies somewhere else. I've tried to explain this to people in our system many times.

It would be like going out to your car, inserting the key in the ignition, and nothing happens. Are you really going to say that the problem with your car is that your key doesn't work?


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Old 02-23-2007, 02:13 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cableric
Although I would admit that a CableCard could be damaged one way or another, the card itself is a relatively passive device. Nothing more than a couple decryption keys that the TiVo uses to process the encrypted streams. As other posters have pointed out, the problem almost always lies somewhere else. I've tried to explain this to people in our system many times.

It would be like going out to your car, inserting the key in the ignition, and nothing happens. Are you really going to say that the problem with your car is that your key doesn't work?
People see it a different way. Initially, everything is working great. Then, after a few days, most of the channels are missing. Investigation of the cause shows up as an authorization failure for one of the CableCARDs. This LOOKS like a CableCARD failure. This is where your key/car analogy breaks down.

It was working fine and now the authorization for the CableCARD is bad which is why people think the CableCARD is/went bad. The reality is the failure is caused by some interaction between the signal coming in from the cable company authorizing the card, the card itself and the TiVo polling the card to ensure it is authorized.

Interestingly, once the TiVo sets the card to the failure status it will not change it back without causing the TiVo to check the card as new. This requires either removing ithe card and reinserting it, which sometimes works, or rebooting the TiVo, which always works. This is at least in my case and the case I think the OP started the poll for.
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Old 02-23-2007, 02:36 PM   #39
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I have never had a cable card issue on my S3 with comcast
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Old 02-23-2007, 02:38 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisMc73
I'm on Cox and I seem to have to restart because one or both of the cards doesn't tune in the stations right. Usually its only one, and sometimes I can fix it by going to random other channels, and coming back to the channel with the issue, and its then tunes in correctly.
Its rather bothersome.
I am on Cox OKC, too, and have had no serious CableCARD problems. Once or twice I have had one or another of the HD channels (700 series on Cox OKC) display a black screen but I have always been able to cure the problem by either changing channels or changing tuners. The CableCARDs in my S3 are refurbished cards made by SA.
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Old 02-23-2007, 04:25 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbenrosen
People see it a different way. Initially, everything is working great. Then, after a few days, most of the channels are missing. Investigation of the cause shows up as an authorization failure for one of the CableCARDs. This LOOKS like a CableCARD failure. This is where your key/car analogy breaks down.

It was working fine and now the authorization for the CableCARD is bad which is why people think the CableCARD is/went bad. The reality is the failure is caused by some interaction between the signal coming in from the cable company authorizing the card, the card itself and the TiVo polling the card to ensure it is authorized.

Interestingly, once the TiVo sets the card to the failure status it will not change it back without causing the TiVo to check the card as new. This requires either removing ithe card and reinserting it, which sometimes works, or rebooting the TiVo, which always works. This is at least in my case and the case I think the OP started the poll for.
I agree with both cableric and your post...

There are definitely cards that are deemed "bad" which are just misconfigured in the backend systems. It seems like it's much easier to just try another card, and hope it's setup correctly, rather than figure out the misconfiguration (and learn something, so they can prevent it in the first place).

But, the card isn't completely passive. It needs to run a fair bit of software that can have its own set of bugs. In this case, it definitely sounds more like a problem with the card (or it's interaction with the S3 software), rather than a misconfiguration.

But, I don't think the tivo "sets the card to the failure status" I'm guessing the card thinks something is going wrong, and sets itself into that state, until it gets reset. I don't know if there's any way the tivo could detect the issue.
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:40 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knuckles
I've had no problems from day 1 with my cable cards.
Ditto - fortunately. In fact, pretty much my only complaint with the S3 is the driver noise. I'm not saying it's relatively noisy, just noisy...er than I would prefer. Especially when I want to listen do some critical music listening. During soft passages, on a quite day, I can easily hear the S3. Ugh. But overall very happy.
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Old 02-24-2007, 12:52 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by rtjones
In fact, pretty much my only complaint with the S3 is the driver noise. I'm not saying it's relatively noisy, just noisy...er than I would prefer.
You might want to look into a drive upgrade, the Seagate DB35 drives are tuned for DVR use and are very quiet.
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Old 02-24-2007, 03:11 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hookbill
It may be my imagination but I read these threads pretty much daily and it's my personal belief that Cablevision seems to have more issues with cable cards then anyone else.
I have Cablevision, SA CableCARDS and no problems in my area.
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Old 02-24-2007, 03:15 AM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blonde
I understand there are many CC problems (especially install related) that aren't referenced by this poll. I meant for this thread/poll to be on the more limited problem of cards working fine most of the time, but just needed a reset as often as mine do.

It's a tough problem to diagnose and fix because it works fine most of the time. Also, since a reset of the Tivo fixes it, it's very easy for the cable company to just blame the Tivo. I can't say for sure if it's the Tivo, the cards, or Cablevison, and who can? In the meantime, I'm left with a very expensive dvr which misses my recordings.
When you do have a problem, what happens? You lose video completely on one CC?
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Old 02-24-2007, 12:33 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by DCIFRTHS
When you do have a problem, what happens? You lose video completely on one CC?
Yes, just black.
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Old 02-26-2007, 01:52 PM   #47
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I just want to thank dbenrosen for jinxing me. I've been having intermittent problems with various channels since Friday. I have unplugged the TiVo 3 times to restore channels that have been 'lost'.
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Old 02-26-2007, 04:09 PM   #48
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Wow - the poll results are impressive

90% have almost no issues, or at most one reboot a month!

I've had one TOTAL issue - when Comcast took over Adelphia's systems, pushed some funky data down and only a reboot reinitialized the cards. Impressive!
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Old 02-26-2007, 06:04 PM   #49
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With Charter in Nevada. Motorola cards. One bad card on installation. Otherwise, haven't had a peep out of them, like they're not even there.
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Old 02-26-2007, 08:03 PM   #50
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No problems with the CC's to have to reboot especially once TWC got the account information corrected.
They are Scientific Atlanta Cards.
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Old 02-26-2007, 08:21 PM   #51
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Since I got the 8.1.1 update (on Feb 12th) I have not lost any channels. Before it seemed like once a week or so. Not sure if it is a coincidence or not or if the software update had anything to do with it. Admittedly, I haven't had the update long enough to be sure.
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:45 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roderigo
But, the card isn't completely passive. It needs to run a fair bit of software that can have its own set of bugs.
Meh, 500 lines of code for the latest Moto cablecard firmware, there's really not much to it.

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Old 02-27-2007, 09:14 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcr2
I just want to thank dbenrosen for jinxing me. I've been having intermittent problems with various channels since Friday. I have unplugged the TiVo 3 times to restore channels that have been 'lost'.
You're welcome. Glad I could help

I recently turned off suggestions in the hope that it would lessen the frequency of the problem. It didn't work as it lasted less than a day before the CC failed. I've noticed that I'm now in the alternating CC failure mode. First CC #1 will fail. The next time it is CC #2, then CC #1, etc. I've had four failures in the last week.

I'm very close to going to FIOS in hopes that this will correct the problem. I don't think it it all Cablevision's fault, but the majority of people who seem to be having the same issue as me are on Cablevision's system (yes, I realize there are a lot of people having no CC issues on Cablevision, but that doesn't help me).
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Old 02-27-2007, 09:17 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by ashu
Wow - the poll results are impressive

90% have almost no issues, or at most one reboot a month!
I'd actually argue that they are disconcerting. That's a 10% failure rate of reboots more frequently than once a month, which seems exceptionally high.

I realize more people who have problems than the general population will vote, but it still seems high.
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Old 02-27-2007, 09:29 PM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cableric
Meh, 500 lines of code for the latest Moto cablecard firmware, there's really not much to it.
Hmmm... Obviously, I've never seen the source code for the Moto cablecard firmware, but based on the spec, I would have expected it to be more involved.

There are at least 8 different types of Host-POD Interface Resources that it needs to support, and each of those have several different messages that it needs to process and send. I would expect it would take more than 500 lines of code just to parse the messages coming from the host, let alone process each different message. This wouldn't include any internal processing the card needs to process when receiving messages from the headend itself. Maybe it does more in hardware than I expected.
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Old 02-28-2007, 02:06 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbenrosen
I'd actually argue that they are disconcerting. That's a 10% failure rate of reboots more frequently than once a month, which seems exceptionally high.

I realize more people who have problems than the general population will vote, but it still seems high.
Remember that a LOT of those failures are the fault of the cable company/CableCard maker not implementing things correctly. Great success rate for the S3 TiVo!

You ALSO have to factor in the correction factor necessary to account for the 'internet effect' - only people with prblems usually report. And the liars (there are a few non-S3 owners who repeatedly diss the unit - think they'd miss an opportunity to skew a poll? )
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Old 02-28-2007, 02:18 PM   #57
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Old 02-28-2007, 02:42 PM   #58
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I feel very lucky. Had initial setup problems with Mediacom, but the issue was administrative based on account setup in the MC computer. Once that was fixed, we have not had one issue with the CC's.

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Old 02-28-2007, 03:31 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by Roderigo
Hmmm... Obviously, I've never seen the source code for the Moto cablecard firmware, but based on the spec, I would have expected it to be more involved.

There are at least 8 different types of Host-POD Interface Resources that it needs to support, and each of those have several different messages that it needs to process and send. I would expect it would take more than 500 lines of code just to parse the messages coming from the host, let alone process each different message. This wouldn't include any internal processing the card needs to process when receiving messages from the headend itself. Maybe it does more in hardware than I expected.
Perhaps some of that is built into the cablecard device also?
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Old 02-28-2007, 04:02 PM   #60
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Quote:
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Remember that a LOT of those failures are the fault of the cable company/CableCard maker not implementing things correctly. Great success rate for the S3 TiVo!
If I thought it was all TiVo's fault I would have given up on the S3 a long time ago. But I don't see how a 10% failure rate can be considered GREAT success.

Of course this isn't a scientific poll and more people who have problems are likely to vote than people not having problems.
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