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Old 03-04-2013, 11:44 PM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 6
Tivo Series 3 Reboots after 5 minutes - Not the usual?

I've searched and read through many similar topics; but mine seems unique. My Series 3 THX(OLED) Tivo recently started misbehaving. Playback on recent recordings would stutter/freeze - If I skip forward I could resume playback, and even skip back to near the original freeze point and catch what I missed. Sounds like a typical HD issue so far. However, just today I found the unit in a reboot loop where it will boot fully and work for about two-three minutes(not including boot time) and then reboot. It doesn't matter what I do for those few minutes; watch live TV, playback, stare at the TiVo Central screen, etc... Still seems like the typical HD issue. Next I set the Kickstart 57 code to see if the file system could be repaired. You're supposed to get the green screen with the "serious issue" notice for about three hours while it attempts to repair the file system or whatnot. Here's the deal - even in this mode, it only stays "up" for about two to three minutes and then reboots! And, now that I used KS 57 to "mark" or flag the file system as needing repair, due to the fact that it never gets a chance to finish before rebooting, it now is in a continuous loop of booting to the recovery mode, which it will never successfully complete! I can't force any other kickstart modes to work either. It wants to finish trying to fix the file system instead, so there's no trying KS 54 or even KS 52. However, I'm suspecting the issue lies somewhere other than the HD since even the recovery mode reboots after a few minutes. I haven't timed it yet, but it seems to be constant and consistent in duration. I opened the unit up and the fan appears to be working fine. I don't see any obvious power supply capacitor bulging or any obvious sign of electrolyte leakage either. I just got a new Premiere XL recently so I'm not attached to the old one, but there are a bunch of shows I'd like to get off of the unit, and If this is fixable, It would be nice to be able to resell. If the answer is new Hard drive, I'll just sell it for parts as I'd lose the shows anyway and the unit is not lifetime. However if anyone has some hints I can try I'd give them a shot. I've already disconnected the CableCard, Coax, and Enet. I really just want to be able to bring this back to life long enough to get a few more key recordings off of it. Thanks in advance for any help!

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Old 03-05-2013, 08:19 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Near Dayton, Ohio
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Bulging caps aren't always so "obvious". Take a look at this photo:
(In post #2 of linked thread)
To eliminate the PS more definitely, use a voltmeter to check the voltages (without disconnecting any PS leads). Red is 5V, Yellow is 12V, relative to black (negative/ground).

If the PS is OK, remove the HD and connect it to a PC either using the SATA connector on the mother board or a USB-SATA adapter cable and run Western Digitals Lifeguard Diagnostics extended test. Warning: this test will take hours if you use the USB-SATA adapter. The test is non-destructive provided it doesn't find problems. If it does find problems, you need a new HD.

If you can't run the extended HD diagnostics, and your HD is several years old, I would just assume it is the problem and replace it.


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