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Old 06-09-2008, 02:45 PM   #1
rptgeek
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Tivo - Beta test

Ok - i just got invited to a beta test for new Tivo software....

Before joining there is a message:

"If you have purchased or personally upgraded a TiVo box with more than the manufactured standard recording capacity, please do not enroll it in this program. Doing so is at your own risk -- if there are issues with the hardware and the beta software during the program, we cannot support you. If you are using a TiVo Verified external storage drive, you can proceed in enrolling."

Any thoughts on this? What are they doing to those of us who have upgraded our hard drives?
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Old 06-09-2008, 02:53 PM   #2
flatcurve
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They're not planning on doing anything malicious. This is just for liability's sake. While you can almost be guaranteed that the software will work on an upgraded drive, TiVo hasn't tested it that way and doesn't want to take responsibility for any problems that might occur, no matter how unlikely.

Personally, I wouldn't beta test with an upgraded drive... not because I'd be worried about bricking my TiVo, but because if I've got an upgraded drive, chances are that I've got some saved content on there that I want to keep. If the software turns out to be a dud, there's no downgrading.
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Old 06-09-2008, 03:38 PM   #3
bmgoodman
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This is interesting to me in that I cannot recall Tivo EVER specifically referencing these "upgraders". Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying they are planning anything malicious, but I do wonder if they have any reason to believe the upgraded drives *might* have problems with the new software. (A change to the partition table, format, etc.?)
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Old 06-09-2008, 03:46 PM   #4
flatcurve
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It's not the first time actually. Back when the WD MyDVR Expander was released, they did say that it wouldn't work with an upgraded unit.
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Old 06-09-2008, 05:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rptgeek View Post
Ok - i just got invited to a beta test for new Tivo software....

Before joining there is a message:

"If you have purchased or personally upgraded a TiVo box with more than the manufactured standard recording capacity, please do not enroll it in this program. Doing so is at your own risk -- if there are issues with the hardware and the beta software during the program, we cannot support you. If you are using a TiVo Verified external storage drive, you can proceed in enrolling."

Any thoughts on this? What are they doing to those of us who have upgraded our hard drives?
That is interesting and I can only speculate on the sentiment behind that verbiage; I have not personally spoken with anyone at TiVo about this.

I would agree with flatcurve on this, however; TiVo has never taken a hostile position when it comes to upgrades, but since we've been doing it for as long as we have, they are clearly aware of the fact that they are out there, and there is always the possibility of issues.

As flatcurve pointed out, when the DVR expander came out, they did mention what needed to be mentioned as they did not want folks to be surprised that the DVR expander won't work on previously upgraded units (this is not by design, its just a function of how the software works and the techniques used by upgraders not co-existing well with TiVo's method of automatically embracing a 2nd drive).

So, with all of that in mind, they want you to be aware of what you should already know and that is if you've upgraded your unit, you are not under warranty and they don't want to end up in a support scenario if their beta software somehow renders your unit inoperable.

I think all of this is done in the spirit of minimizing their costs and managing expections appropriately.

I'd also like to think that if the new software was known to break upgraded units, we might have gotten a call right now. TiVo did contact us to let us know that the WD expander would not work with an updated unit, so we were ready for that one.

Again, all speculation on my part; it will be interesting to see how things play out, though.

Lou
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Old 06-10-2008, 06:40 AM   #6
mr.unnatural
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It sounds like Tivo is just trying to cover their a$$ so that if a problem arises with an upgraded Tivo they can absolve themselves of any blame. It makes sense from a pure business standpoint because they test all of their Tivos with stock software and hardware and have no idea if something funky will occur with an upgraded unit. If you introduce an upgraded unit into a beta test then you could falsely skew the results. They have no problems if you upgrade your Tivo as long as you're aware they're not responsible for what happens and you're doing it at your own risk.
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Old 06-10-2008, 07:07 AM   #7
bmgoodman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flatcurve View Post
It's not the first time actually. Back when the WD MyDVR Expander was released, they did say that it wouldn't work with an upgraded unit.
Well, isn't it because expanding the drive added some partitions that would keep the external drive from working "automatically"? (I believe you can still use an expanded internal with an external if you remove both drives, connect them in a PC, and marry them there.)

Again, I'm just expressing moderate concern that Tivo may be changing something that *could* affect users with upgraded internal drives, because in this case the warning from Tivo wasn't directly related to adding external drives. It seemed to be about upgraded drives in general.

Anyway, time will tell.
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Old 06-10-2008, 01:39 PM   #8
BiloxiGeek
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Hmmm, it was a few years ago that I participated in a beta program for TiVo, but I seem to remember that the NDA does specify you're not supposed to even mention that you're participating in the beta test.
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Old 06-10-2008, 01:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Hmmm, it was a few years ago that I participated in a beta program for TiVo, but I seem to remember that the NDA does specify you're not supposed to even mention that you're participating in the beta test.
It does, but the OP did not say whether he was actually participating. He indicated that he was INVITED... TiVo recently revamped their beta system and it has changed, completely. You can register all of your units (or just some of them) as well as answer a variety of survey questions. If your details end up meeting their requirements for beta testing, you could get invited, but choose to not participate. Choosing to participate has different implications than simply registering with the beta site...

Its actually a very nice system, as well.

Lou
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