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Old 11-16-2013, 10:57 PM   #1
harborguy
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What does "Acquiring Channel Information" stuck at 75% mean?

Does anybody actually know what is (not) being done when a Roamio is stuck on the "Acquiring Channel Information" screen with 75% complete?

My new Roamio had previously been stuck on 50% and Tivo support told me to call my cable company and get them to send a tech. So after I got off the phone with my appointment scheduled, for fun, I did the full factory reset and repeated Guided Setup.

Now I'm stuck on 75%. So I infer the 50% mark meant that the cable card and guided setup were not in agreement (which I wish Tivo support would have said, or told me to repeat setup, but oh well)

So: what does 75% complete need in order to complete? Does anybody know?
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Old 11-17-2013, 05:30 PM   #2
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Are you talking about that spinning wheel when you try to go to live TV? If so then that's a CableCARD issue. Most likely the CableCARD is bad. It happens sometimes.
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Old 11-17-2013, 09:39 PM   #3
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It could be in the middle of a firmware update and got bricked. It could also mean the card was never activated. The very least, you should get a new cablecard.
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Old 11-18-2013, 07:27 AM   #4
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Thanks for replying. Yes, I'm talking about the spinning wheel. I'm on my 2nd Roamio and 2nd Cable Card with identical results.

I was hoping someone could say what the Tivo is trying to get out of the cable card that it sits there forever, or perhaps point to line items on the "DVR Diagnostics" or CableCard page that say what is going on and why it is stuck.

I'm in the fairly common place right now where TiVo support is blaming the cable company, and the cable company swears it's not their problem but is playing ball and sending a technician. I am just looking down the road to when the technician says everything is fine and they can't do anything except shrug their shoulders at the 75% complete mark just like me.
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Old 11-18-2013, 08:12 AM   #5
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It happened to me. Make sure the cable card is paired before you run Guide Setup.
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Old 11-18-2013, 09:03 AM   #6
harborguy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hybucket View Post
It happened to me. Make sure the cable card is paired before you run Guide Setup.
Thanks. When you discovered this "the hard way" - I was wondering if using the "Delete all information" option when resetting the TiVo was enough to get the TiVo back to factory fresh for you to proceed all the way? Or did you have to get a new TiVo ?

I've actually done it several ways so far:
- complete the guided setup without a cable card inserted, then add the CC afterward: stuck at %50
- perform the pairing during guided setup when the prompt screen comes up: stuck at %75
- erase the TiVo and start over with already paired card: stuck at %75

Just wondering what ended up working for you?
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Old 11-18-2013, 09:30 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by harborguy View Post
Thanks. When you discovered this "the hard way" - I was wondering if using the "Delete all information" option when resetting the TiVo was enough to get the TiVo back to factory fresh for you to proceed all the way? Or did you have to get a new TiVo ?

I've actually done it several ways so far:
- complete the guided setup without a cable card inserted, then add the CC afterward: stuck at %50
- perform the pairing during guided setup when the prompt screen comes up: stuck at %75
- erase the TiVo and start over with already paired card: stuck at %75

Just wondering what ended up working for you?
The state of the TiVo has nothing to do with the acquiring channels screen. The screen is there because the TiVo is waiting on the cablecard (either a firmware update or activation). There's nothing TiVo can do about it. Your cable company is the only one who can get it past that screen.
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Old 11-18-2013, 09:48 AM   #8
harborguy
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Originally Posted by rainwater View Post
The state of the TiVo has nothing to do with the acquiring channels screen. The screen is there because the TiVo is waiting on the cablecard (either a firmware update or activation). There's nothing TiVo can do about it. Your cable company is the only one who can get it past that screen.
It's funny you should say that, since that is the exact opposite of my experience so far.

When I completed guided setup with the option of "I'll add a cable card later", and then added that cable card, the TiVo never got past %50.

Leaving the cable card in the same state as it was, but reinitializing the TiVo, now the TiVo reports %75. (i.e. nothing changed except the state of the TiVo, and now the TiVo reports a different number).
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Old 11-18-2013, 11:57 AM   #9
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I would run a long coax directly from your outside cable drop to your TiVo with nothing else in between to allow for the best possible communication between headend and your cable card to see if you can get past the problem. Since you don't mention Tuning Adapter I assume there is not one in the picture?
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Old 11-18-2013, 02:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by harborguy View Post
It's funny you should say that, since that is the exact opposite of my experience so far.

When I completed guided setup with the option of "I'll add a cable card later", and then added that cable card, the TiVo never got past %50.

Leaving the cable card in the same state as it was, but reinitializing the TiVo, now the TiVo reports %75. (i.e. nothing changed except the state of the TiVo, and now the TiVo reports a different number).
The number means nothing. Most likely re-running guided setup did nothing but change the percentage that was displayed. The CableCard is stuck so no matter how many times you run guided setup or make changes it isn't going to fix the card. If it can't activate or finish a firmware update, then you will have to replace the card.
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Old 11-18-2013, 02:56 PM   #11
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I don't know why this happens sometimes, but not others, but this problem always exists as a result of a CableCARD that was not properly paired. The DVR is "Acquiring channel information" from the CableCARD and if the CableCARD doesn't have it, it will be stuck "acquiring" indefinitely.

The issue is usually resolved by pairing the CableCARD properly, though sometimes circumstances prevent that (such as no signal getting through the coaxial line into the DVR).

I've heard of this issue being resolved by getting a fresh coaxial line from outside of the home and plugging it into the back of the unit before proceeding through the pairing process.

If the CableCARD has not been paired at all (no attempt was made), you should probably get it paired through your cable provider.

Quote:
Originally Posted by harborguy View Post
When I completed guided setup with the option of "I'll add a cable card later", and then added that cable card, the TiVo never got past %50.
Oddly, the problem will show itself as either 50%, or 75%, but no other number. The resolution for either is the same.
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Old 11-18-2013, 03:20 PM   #12
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my experience

Quote:
Originally Posted by harborguy View Post
Does anybody actually know what is (not) being done when a Roamio is stuck on the "Acquiring Channel Information" screen with 75% complete?
In my case, which persisted for weeks, my device was pointing at the wrong head end. This took FOREVER to clear up, as the Comcast personnel were all being told by "someone" the paperwork was all lined up. Worse, Comcast's DVR worked flawlessly - obviously they design logic into their system to allow it to find a mother ship, etc. But the fact their DVR worked resulted in the light being focused back onto the Tivo.

I finally used the "we_can_help@comcast.com" email address. The lady assigned to my account triple-checked the head end assigned on my account paperwork, and found I was indeed pointed to the wrong one.

BOOM. everything started working. So, I didn't notice if you had NEW service or were upgrading Tivo or what....but this is what fixed my new service.

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Old 11-18-2013, 05:42 PM   #13
harborguy
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Patrick, thanks for replying. Your situation sounds similar to what I think I am involved in except the provider is Time Warner.

This is simply trying to replace my 4 yr old broken TiVo with a new one. Took the old working cable card, moved it to the new TiVo, called the hotline to get it paired -- and it has never seen more than 75% complete.

I am in a geographic area where I am about 30 miles closer to the wrong city than the one I am actually served by. My latest fedex delivery of new Cable Card and tuning adapter actually had a sticker on the box that said "Provisioned XYZ" where XYZ is the initials of the wrong city. Obviously, I mentioned this to 3 of the national hotline people at TWC, but they really didn't seem to care. Their claim was that if that were the problem, it never would have paired. My card was paired, they could communicate with it, etc. etc. etc. and all I could say back to them was "Tivo says 75%".

The technician is going to be here in the morning, and it will be the first thing I whine to him about. Hopefully, it is that "simple".
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Old 11-18-2013, 05:51 PM   #14
harborguy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj View Post
I would run a long coax directly from your outside cable drop to your TiVo with nothing else in between to allow for the best possible communication between headend and your cable card to see if you can get past the problem. Since you don't mention Tuning Adapter I assume there is not one in the picture?
moyekj, Thanks for replying: yes I tried that on Sunday, with no improvement. What I did learn in the process, though, was that on the DVR Diagnostics screen, the TiVo Roamio reports an "OOB SNR" of 44dB with no cable or with a terminator installed on it's coax-in. That is a lot of signal for something that is disconnected! Other than that, it reported the same SNR value if I did a direct run vs. through my normal household wiring.
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Old 11-18-2013, 06:01 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by harborguy View Post
Their claim was that if that were the problem, it never would have paired. My card was paired, they could communicate with it, etc. etc. etc. and all I could say back to them was "Tivo says 75%".

The technician is going to be here in the morning, and it will be the first thing I whine to him about. Hopefully, it is that "simple".
They are wrong. It'll pair regardless. My bet is you are pointing at the wrong head end. Fingers crossed. MAKE HIM CHANGE THE HEAD END.

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Old 11-18-2013, 08:04 PM   #16
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moyekj, Thanks for replying: yes I tried that on Sunday, with no improvement. What I did learn in the process, though, was that on the DVR Diagnostics screen, the TiVo Roamio reports an "OOB SNR" of 44dB with no cable or with a terminator installed on it's coax-in. That is a lot of signal for something that is disconnected! Other than that, it reported the same SNR value if I did a direct run vs. through my normal household wiring.
In post above you mention TWC is your provider. I seem to recall most TWC headends require Tuning Adapters for SDV channels. Note that the Tuning Adapter takes over channel mapping responsibilities from the Cable Card when it's being used so would be interesting to see what happens if you plug in a TA if you haven't already.
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Old 11-18-2013, 08:23 PM   #17
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In post above you mention TWC is your provider. I seem to recall most TWC headends require Tuning Adapters for SDV channels. Note that the Tuning Adapter takes over channel mapping responsibilities from the Cable Card when it's being used so would be interesting to see what happens if you plug in a TA if you haven't already.
Well that is another can of worms and if I could get it to work without TA and SDV that would be real progress. With/without TA doesn't change the TiVo %75, but that is not conclusive because out of the (3) TA's I have at my house at this minute, only my oldest/original TA establishes solid link light but sadly only occasionally (1-in-10?) gets recognized as a TA by the TiVO. I think that TA is dead/dying. The other two brand new TA's don't ever get solid link light.

I don't know anything, but I suspect this is consistent with them shipping me CC and TA provisioned for the wrong cable system in my area. Hopefully the technician will have an "ah-hah" moment early on in his visit.
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Old 11-19-2013, 05:42 PM   #18
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A brief follow up: today, my service provider (Time Warner Cable) had a technician at my house today for 6 hours working on my problem. I posted a comment in another thread with some details:
http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...17#post9901917

And I might post some more learnings, later after I have recovered some strength; but long story short about this specific screen that the TiVo will display "Acquiring Channel Information" stuck at 75% -

In my experience today, with (2) Roamio's and probably 6 Cable Cards:
- there was no cabling / noise / signal quality issue, despite much looking by the technician as part of running through the checklist.
- there was never any hardware problem: neither with the TiVo, nor the Cable Cards.
- every cable card tried in any TiVo was able to be paired correctly

Despite all that, the TiVo never got past %75.

As I mentioned in the other thread, I am inferring from my experience that "75% complete" means that the TiVo is sitting there waiting to receive from the Cable Card a list of channels that the TiVo is authorized to view. I guess if it never gets the list, or if the list has Zero entries, the TiVo does the same thing ("75%" complete). It might never get the list because the card was broken or a signal problem etc. etc. etc. Or it might get the list but it is empty ---- because some database somewhere is messed up and you really aren't authorized to view any channels.

From my experience so far, the easiest change any company could make would be for TiVo to "work" with zero channels authorized during initial setup. Flipping through the channels seeing "cable card is good, but not authorized" everywhere, would have been a totally different phone call to a totally different department, and my problem(s) might have gotten resolved much faster.

For the cable companies, I know they don't care about serving this niche market or making the experience pleasant, but everything would have also gone a lot smoother if the technician had a Cable Card test equipment, where he put the card in it, programmed it to look like the TiVo HostID, then went through the whole process (paired? authorized for channels? signal quality OK? ...) Really strange how they rely on a debugging process built on using customer-owned equipment of unknown history; if the card checks out but continues to fail in the TiVo, clearly, it's a TiVo problem.

Anyway, I think the end of the tunnel is in sight for me, I just hope the current TiVo doesn't die sooner than 4yrs like the one that it is replacing did.
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