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Old 10-23-2007, 09:38 AM   #31
bkdtv
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This morning, Tivo officially launched its new storage product. More information @ http://www.tivo.com/expand/.

It is available for order right now @

https://www3.tivo.com/store/accessories.do#expander
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Old 10-23-2007, 09:47 AM   #32
richsadams
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George Cifranci
I just got 9.2.J1 on my Tivo Series 3 last night. I have a internal 750GB Seagate DB35 that I had upgraded to before even powering on my Series 3 for the first time back in Jan. Then later using MFSLive CD I added another Seagate 750GB DB35 in a Antec MX-1 eSata enclosure (for a total of 1.5TB).

I am happy to report that after getting 9.2j last night and rebooting my eSata config is still working fine.
All good news for us nervous types. Thanks!
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Old 10-23-2007, 09:57 AM   #33
mute
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What I'm dying to know, is why TiVo is allowing s3 owners to use unsupported eSATA drives, but not THD users?

TiVoPony has said that they aren't allowing people who have hacked their internal drives to use eSATA via the pnp method because they'd already run into problems, but why are they not allowing THD users anything?

I held off on upgrading my internal drive for this very reason, but now that I've more or less been told that the MX-1+750gb DB35 I bought aren't going to work w/o hacking, I might just say screw it and hack my internal drive, which is what I wanted to avoid doing all along.

Le sigh!
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:20 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mute
What I'm dying to know, is why TiVo is allowing s3 owners to use unsupported eSATA drives, but not THD users?

TiVoPony has said that they aren't allowing people who have hacked their internal drives to use eSATA via the pnp method because they'd already run into problems, but why are they not allowing THD users anything?

I held off on upgrading my internal drive for this very reason, but now that I've more or less been told that the MX-1+750gb DB35 I bought aren't going to work w/o hacking, I might just say screw it and hack my internal drive, which is what I wanted to avoid doing all along.

Le sigh!
My guess is that the lower price point unit is the one that will have the largest market penetration and therefore from a customer service cost standpoint it makes sense to limit support for the mass unit to one (or maybe two) expansion solution so customer service reps don't have to "learn" dozens of solutions.

fewer customers have the S3 and it has always been marketed as the solution for home theater enthusiasts who are more likely to be more technically savvy. All of which generates fewer calls and limits the strain on customer service. Plus, the S3 is a higher priced unit and there are few things separating it from the lower priced THD units. supporting some additional expansion solutions is throwing a bone to those early adopters. and TiVo feels like it can "allow" those few customers to go off on their own so long as TiVo absolves itself with a disclaimer. They wouldn't be willing to take on that risk with a more mass-distributed product.
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:34 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naclone
My guess is that the lower price point unit is the one that will have the largest market penetration and therefore from a customer service cost standpoint it makes sense to limit support for the mass unit to one (or maybe two) expansion solution so customer service reps don't have to "learn" dozens of solutions.

fewer customers have the S3 and it has always been marketed as the solution for home theater enthusiasts who are more likely to be more technically savvy. All of which generates fewer calls and limits the strain on customer service. Plus, the S3 is a higher priced unit and there are few things separating it from the lower priced THD units. supporting some additional expansion solutions is throwing a bone to those early adopters. and TiVo feels like it can "allow" those few customers to go off on their own so long as TiVo absolves itself with a disclaimer. They wouldn't be willing to take on that risk with a more mass-distributed product.
I see where you're coming from, but I don't buy it. From a technical standpoint, there's no reason not to. Hooking up an eSATA drive is not like a wireless adapter. Drives may not be PVR compatible, but from the driver perspective, TiVo only has to support the eSATA chipset in the tivo, there is little reason for any eSATA enclosure/drive combo you hook up not to work.

If TiVo's perspective really is that THD users are less savvy, then they are missing out. I am a huge HT guy, but I chose not to buy the s3 because I felt it was overpriced for what it was, and despite the "differences" between the two units, I think real HT enthusiasts would see past the fluff that differentiates the two, a pretty fascia, a bs THX certification and a 2 line VFD that nobody is going to be able to read when it's in their rack.

For the first time since I got my THD, I am disappointed. Sad that I'll have to spend time hacking a device when a PNP solution is staring everyone in the face, backed by a company that is looking to make their lives a wee bit easier than satisfy their customers. TiVo: I'll take my chances, give me the ability to hook an "unauthorized" eSATA device to my THD, I can handle it.
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:38 AM   #36
naclone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mute

If TiVo's perspective really is that THD users are less savvy, then they are missing out. I am a huge HT guy, but I chose not to buy the s3 because I felt it was overpriced for what it was, and despite the "differences" between the two units, I think real HT enthusiasts would see past the fluff that differentiates the two, a pretty fascia, a bs THX certification and a 2 line VFD that nobody is going to be able to read when it's in their rack.

For the first time since I got my THD, I am disappointed. Sad that I'll have to spend time hacking a device when a PNP solution is staring everyone in the face, backed by a company that is looking to make their lives a wee bit easier than satisfy their customers. TiVo: I'll take my chances, give me the ability to hook an "unauthorized" eSATA device to my THD, I can handle it.
this actually is precisely the point i was trying to make. there really isn't any difference between S3 and THD, so TiVo just added one.
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:54 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mute
I see where you're coming from, but I don't buy it. From a technical standpoint, there's no reason not to. Hooking up an eSATA drive is not like a wireless adapter. Drives may not be PVR compatible, but from the driver perspective, TiVo only has to support the eSATA chipset in the tivo, there is little reason for any eSATA enclosure/drive combo you hook up not to work.
As we saw with the previous eSATA thread, most retail eSATA products are intended for PCs and not designed for 24/7 operation. They use enclosures that were not designed to dissipate the heat created from constant writing to disk, which is exactly what a DVR does. When the drives in these products overheat, drive corruption can result, leading to reboots and/or lost recordings.

There's also the issue of cables. Most retail eSATA products include a eSATA cable with a connector that is not sufficiently long to establish a stable and reliable connection with the Tivo. In some cases, the Tivo will not work with these cables at all. In other cases, the Tivo works with these cables, but file corruption can result, resulting in drive corruption and lost recordings.

The "Tivo Verified" Western Digital DVR Expander uses a hard drive specifically designed for DVR applications. The drive has a low-noise profile and uses error handling routines that are optimized for DVRs. The product also includes an eSATA cable that works well with the Tivo. That's not to say you couldn't build your own [reliable] eSATA solution for the Tivo Series3 using a bare internal drive, the appropriate case, and the right eSATA cable, but most retail eSATA drives should be avoided.

Why support all drives on the Series3 and not the TivoHD? I don't know. If I were to speculate, I would say it has something to do with the fact that:
  1. Many enthusiasts had already added drives to the Series3 using the unofficial "kickstart62" method. That "kickstart62" method was not available on the TivoHD;

  2. Given its lower price, the TivoHD is more of a "mass market" product, and as a result, its users tend to be "less savvy" (as you put it). Tivo wants to minimize its support costs, and allowing "less savvy" users -- 99% of which never read this forum, and don't know about the issues mentioned above -- to add their own drives would create a lot of support headaches.
The price on the Western Digital DVR Expander isn't bad when you consider it includes (1) a drive with firmware designed for DVRs, (2) an eSATA enclosure with sufficient dissipation for that particular drive, (3) a suitable eSATA cable, and (4) the full backing of Tivo should you ever have any problems. You would pay $120-$150 to buy that drive separately, another $40-$50 for a suitable enclosure like the Antec MX-1, and another $10-$20 for an eSATA cable that works well with the Tivo. Official Tivo support is also worth something, although I don't know how to quantify that.

Last edited by bkdtv : 10-23-2007 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:57 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mute
What I'm dying to know, is why TiVo is allowing s3 owners to use unsupported eSATA drives, but not THD users?

TiVoPony has said that they aren't allowing people who have hacked their internal drives to use eSATA via the pnp method because they'd already run into problems, but why are they not allowing THD users anything?

I held off on upgrading my internal drive for this very reason, but now that I've more or less been told that the MX-1+750gb DB35 I bought aren't going to work w/o hacking, I might just say screw it and hack my internal drive, which is what I wanted to avoid doing all along.

Le sigh!
Totally, 100% agree with your statement...I have previouly purchsed a MX-1 w/1 TB WD HDD...now it's just a paperweight unless I want to make additional modifications...the MX-1 works fine as a PnP on the S3...it should be allowed to function in the same manner on the THD!
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Old 10-23-2007, 11:04 AM   #39
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WD reports that My DVR Expander is certified wirh S2 and HD:

http://www.hdtvmagazine.com/news/200...elivers_hu.php
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Old 10-23-2007, 11:08 AM   #40
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Seagate w/ enclosure

Anyone know if this Seagate drive with enclosure meets the 24/7 and fan requirements? It looks like it might contain one of the reccomended drives, but I can't really tell.
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Old 10-23-2007, 11:15 AM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by singletb
Anyone know if this Seagate drive with enclosure meets the 24/7 and fan requirements? It looks like it might contain one of the reccomended drives, but I can't really tell.
No, it does not.

Many used that drive with the Series3 using the previous, unsupported kickstart62 method. It worked fine for some, but many had that drive fail.

Seagate does not sell any eSATA drives for DVRs. All of Seagate's eSATA drives are intended for PCs and include cooling appropriate for that use.
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Old 10-23-2007, 11:19 AM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by singletb
Anyone know if this Seagate drive with enclosure meets the 24/7 and fan requirements? It looks like it might contain one of the recommended drives, but I can't really tell.
Going back to last May when a lot of us got into this, the FAP's returned mixed results. The supplied eSATA cables were not functional without modifications and there were a number of reported heat issues. Some folks are still using them without trouble, but others were not happy and ended up with reboots, lost programs, etc. IIRC, they became a "not recommended" drive. More here...see #36 in particular.

EDIT: Ha! I see bkdtv replied at the same time...he's the expert so I'll defer...although great minds think alike.

Last edited by richsadams : 10-23-2007 at 11:42 AM.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:33 PM   #43
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Just to add another data point.

With TiVo version 9.2, I was able to successfully add a non-supported eSata drive to my TiVo Series 3 (I did not connect the eSata drive to my TiVo until after I got version 9.2). I am using the Seagate 750DB DB35 drive (model ST3750840SCE), the Antec MX-1 enclosure, and the SIIG eSata 1m cable (CB-SA0111-S1).
As explained earlier, TiVo warns that the drive is not officially supported, but allows you to add it anyway to a TiVo Series 3.

Now, I'm going to get the officially supported WD drive for my other TiVo, a TiVo HD.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:40 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkdtv
Seagate does not sell any eSATA drives for DVRs. All of Seagate's eSATA drives are intended for PCs and include cooling appropriate for that use.
Just to clarify for other readers, bkdtv is saying that Seagate does not sell drives that are _already_ inside an external enclosure that are intended for DVRs. But, Seagate does sell standalone drives that are intended to be used for DVRs (i.e. the DB35 series). But, these would have to be put in a separately purchased external enclosure (such as the Antec MX-1).

Anyway, I actually purchased my 750GB DB35 drive a few days ago, right before TiVo announced their official support for eSata drives. I was actually torn between the 500GB WD My DVR drive and the Seagate drive. The 500GB WD drive's price was not bad, and the 750GB DB35 with Antec MX-1 and SIIG eSata cable was more than 50% more than the WD drive (so you paid more than 50% of the price for only 50% increase in capacity). But, 750GB was much more alluring than 500GB. If I had to do it now, my decision on what drive to purchase may have been different, but now that I have the Seagate (and can't return it), I'm glad I have 750GB. Hope it provides trouble free performance for a long time....
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:58 PM   #45
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Thanks rrman. That is absolutely right; in fact, the Seagate DB35 was one of the most popular drives added to the Series3 with its unofficial eSATA support in 8.3.x.

It's too bad Seagate doesn't sell that drive in an eSATA enclosure for use with DVRs.
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:16 PM   #46
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I have to ask why Tivo felt compelled to record shows on both the external and internal drives. Dish just released their external storage option which allows users to swap drives between their DVRs (as long as they are on the same account).

This is annoying, though something I will likely live with. Now I have to decide if the My DVR Expander drive from the WD site is the same as the one from the Tivo site, saving me about $40.

Brad
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:25 PM   #47
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I thought this was a interesting quote from TivoPony that is appropriate for this thread...

http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...&&#post5624966

Quote:
Originally Posted by TiVoPony
The backdoor that allowed any eSATA drive to work with the Series3 was not intended for public consumption. Once it got out though, there was little we could do short of disabling all the drives the community had already purchased and installed. That would have been unpleasant for everyone, so the Series3 is grandfathered to work with non-verified eSATA drives via the eSATA menus. We will not provide any support however for non-verified drives, or any issues that arise from having used one.

There wasn't a backdoor for the TiVo HD platform, nor will there be one. The TiVo Verified solutions are the way to go with a TiVo HD. I'd recommend it for the Series3 as well!

Pony

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Old 10-23-2007, 02:30 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George Cifranci
I thought this was a interesting quote from TivoPony that is appropriate for this thread...

http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...&&#post5624966
Thanks, I added that as FAQ #4.
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:38 PM   #49
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Thanks, I added that as FAQ #4.
I fail to see how not allowing S3s to marry drives in the future would have disabled already married drives.
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:40 PM   #50
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Any ideas what the Tivo looks for when determining if the newly attached eSATA drive is a Western Digital DVR Expander, or not? Is it the hard drive itself, or the chipset/board in the eSATA enclosure, or both.

Assuming budget is not an issue, and you want maximum compatibility and capacity for S3 and HD versions... could you purchase a Western Digital DVR Expander and replace the drive with a 1TB drive? Would the Tivo know? Would it see it as a 1T "certified" drive?
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:42 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mute
What I'm dying to know, is why TiVo is allowing s3 owners to use unsupported eSATA drives, but not THD users?

TiVoPony has said that they aren't allowing people who have hacked their internal drives to use eSATA via the pnp method because they'd already run into problems, but why are they not allowing THD users anything?
I recommend skepticism and critical reading in this situation.
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:46 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by kingmiwok
Any ideas what the Tivo looks for when determining if the newly attached eSATA drive is a Western Digital DVR Expander, or not? Is it the hard drive itself, or the chipset/board in the eSATA enclosure, or both.

Assuming budget is not an issue, and you want maximum compatibility and capacity for S3 and HD versions... could you purchase a Western Digital DVR Expander and replace the drive with a 1TB drive? Would the Tivo know? Would it see it as a 1T "certified" drive?
I doubt that would work.

Tivo probably checks the specific model drive and/or its firmware. The enclosure probably doesn't have much to do with the compatibility.
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:47 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by HDTiVo
I fail to see how not allowing S3s to marry drives in the future would have disabled already married drives.
I don't understand your comment.

Tivo is not disabling any drives married under the previous software.
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:52 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by bkdtv
(4) the full backing of Tivo should you ever have any problems.
Is that a positive or negative dollar amount?
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:54 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by bkdtv
I don't understand your comment.

Tivo is not disabling any drives married under the previous software.
Really refering to TiVoPony which you were incorporating into the FAQ. I can't imagine why not having the S3 PnP marry those drives going forward would involve disabling previously married drives using KS62, which is part of what Pony implies.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TiVoPony
The backdoor that allowed any eSATA drive to work with the Series3 was not intended for public consumption. Once it got out though, there was little we could do short of disabling all the drives the community had already purchased and installed.

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Old 10-23-2007, 08:01 PM   #56
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Really refering to TiVoPony which you were incorporating into the FAQ. I can't imagine why not having the S3 PnP marry those drives going forward would involve disabling previously married drives using KS62, which is part of what Pony implies.
Ahh, I see what you mean.

He probably meant that if the user ever "unmarried" the drive, they would be unable to add it again. TivoPony does his best to simplify issues here on TCF. Some members are too smart for their own good.

As an aside, I merged in the contents of the old 8.3.x FAQ under the the "Non Verified" section.
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Old 10-23-2007, 09:39 PM   #57
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The Western Digital My Book Home Edition 1TB is verified to NOT work with 9.2J on a S3. It looks like WD really wants us to by the 500GB version.
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Old 10-23-2007, 09:40 PM   #58
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Non-verified step 14 says:
You cannot backup the drive itself, but you can't copy recordings to your PC using TivoToGo.

I think the latter part is supposed to be "but you can copy recordings to your PC...",
meaning BEFORE you remove the drive... (I think)

(Bummer, so this means that the mfscopy | mfsrestore tools that have worked forever don't work on S3/TivoHD??)
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Old 10-23-2007, 09:41 PM   #59
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Does anyone know how long the eSATA cable that is included with the WD verifiied drive is?
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Old 10-23-2007, 09:42 PM   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattack
Non-verified step 14 says:
You cannot backup the drive itself, but you can't copy recordings to your PC using TivoToGo.

I think the latter part is supposed to be "but you can copy recordings to your PC...",
meaning BEFORE you remove the drive... (I think)
Typo fixed, thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattack
(Bummer, so this means that the mfscopy | mfsrestore tools that have worked forever don't work on S3/TivoHD??)
I know those tools work on the main drive. But I was previously told that one could not backup recordings from one eSATA drive and restore it to another. If that is possible, please let me know and I will fix that.
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