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Old 01-02-2012, 11:21 PM   #1
Ben321
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Need a complete hack tutorial for TIVO Series-2 device

I have a TIVO Series-2 device I bought at Goodwill for just $13 a while ago and just recently hooked it up to my router temporarily to upgrade the firmware. At this moment it is running firmware version 9.3.2-01-2-649 (according to the system info screen on the device). Good deal for something to just play around with. But now I need to know the easiest hacks for it. These must NOT involve having an active internet connection to my TIVO as my only network connection between it and my computer is a no-router setup using a "crossover" ethernet cable, and manually assigned IP address for my computer on its ethernet card (192.168.1.100) and a manually assigned IP address for my TIVO Series-2 device (192.168.1.101). Right now as I'm typing this I'm using a wireless internet connection to my router (on the wireless network adapter my computer's IP address is 192.168.0.196). Because my internet service is via a different network adapter (and therefore via a different subnet) than my ethernet connection to my TIVO, any attempt to connect my TIVO to the internet is IMPOSSIBLE.

So first thing to realize is that the hacks you recommend must NOT involve connecting my TIVO to the router because running into the other room and hauling my TIVO and LCD screen, and power supplies, and cables, etc with me would be a MUCH bigger hassle than I'm willing to put up with.


Now with that in mind I'm gonna need to know a few simple things hopefully you can give me tuts for. I've seen tutorials that talk about either the old TIVO Series-1 or the newes TIVO Series-3 devices. However mine is a TIVO Series-2 device and it is NOT working with any other tutorials I've read that aren't TIVO Series-2 based, and so far ZERO of the tutorials involve the TIVO Series-2. I'm hoping someone here can respond to my request and give me some hacks that work with TIVO Series-2. Next thing to remember is that not on the internet my TIVO can't connect to the internet and thus fails the "network test" every time it tries to connect to the internet server at TIVO's company. And when it fails the "network connection" test it not only disconnects from the internet but also from my LAN (the direct cable connection to my computer via crossover ethernet cable). Without a LAN connection I can't perform any telnet based hacks from my computer. So one of the first tutorials I need will be how to get it on the LAN, WITHOUT it performing a "network test".

The other hack I want a tutorial for is how do I access the console? I heard I can hyperterminal in via homebrew serial cable (normally used to control channel changing on a "cable box") between the TIVO and the PC. However this I heard from a guy who had a Philips brand TIVO device (mine is a genuine TIVO brand device), and it was a device based arround the older TIVO Series-1 hardware I believe. So I'm curious if there is anyone on here who knows how to do it with my genuine TIVO brand TIVO Series-2 device running firmware version 9.3.2-01-2-649, because that's what I'm working with.

Really any tutorials will need to be based on TIVO Series-2 running at least version 9 of the firmware (though it also may be possible to use tutorials based on older versions of the firmware as I don't know what the firmware upgrades do exactly, but I'm sure it must be a tut based on a Series-2 device).

So please help me to any hacks for my Series-2 device, preferably hacks that can be achieved via ethernet cable or serial cable only though. I'm not interested in opening up my device to remove the harddrive.
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Old 01-03-2012, 12:04 AM   #2
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This is not the website where you will get the answers you seek.

I'm not sure if such a website exists, because I'm not sure if the answers you seek exist.

However, there is a site, the name of which gets filtered out of anything posted on this site, where some topics not discussed, or not discussed in depth, here are more actively dealt with.

See if you can email me (click on my user name), and I'll email the name of the site back to you.

Please note that the other site is not full of people just waiting to do the work for you, but there is a lot to read there that will help you figure out how to do the work yourself.

Although if your only goal is to get that S2 to record and playback without paying for some kind of subscription, you may not find that for which you are looking there, either.
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Old 01-03-2012, 12:23 AM   #3
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Please note that the other site is not full of people just waiting to do the work for you
I don't think many of the old timers are still around. But if he posts anything like this, and they are, I'm sure they'll all come out to welcome him warmly.

The archives there are rich, though the noise-to-signal is daunting.
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Old 01-03-2012, 12:28 AM   #4
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The other hack I want a tutorial for is how do I access the console?
You're not getting a whole lot further, with the approach and the limitations, but the cable itself you've heard about is the same. While "homebrew" is accurate there are also some commercial versions of the cable.
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Old 01-03-2012, 06:52 AM   #5
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If it has an ethernet port it's the Series 2 Dual Tuner (model TCD649xxx). It's unhackable unless you open it up and replace the PROM chip with a specially modified version. Since it's a surface mounted chip and soldered directly to the motherboard it's a job for someone with a lot of experience. That, combined with the fact that the built-in software already provides the functionality most people want like the ability to transfer shows to/from the device is why there are so few hacking guides.

Even if you get telnet working it won't get you much. The Crestron TCP remote control protocol you asked about in the other thread isn't supported on S2 models.
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:54 AM   #6
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I don't think many of the old timers are still around. But if he posts anything like this, and they are, I'm sure they'll all come out to welcome him warmly.

The archives there are rich, though the noise-to-signal is daunting.
Once I got him into an email conversation I was hoping to indicate to him how not to get a "warm" welcome at DDB while still obtaining informative responses, and perhaps even get him to reconsider the virtues of a subbed machine, or at least get him to understand the way TiVo licensing works and that it's not a conspiracy aimed directly at him.
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Old 01-03-2012, 10:18 AM   #7
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You might want to let him know that he won't be finding the types of tutorials there that he's looking for.
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Old 01-03-2012, 10:21 AM   #8
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You might want to let him know that he won't be finding the types of tutorials there that he's looking for.
I was hoping to be able to break it to him gently, but so far no response.
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Old 01-03-2012, 12:03 PM   #9
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Considering that he's asking for a complete guide to hacking a Tivo that he only paid $13 for I doubt he's going to be willing to put in the time and effort required for any learning curve on the subject. I'm getting the impression that he just wants to hack his Tivo to get around paying for the Tivo service, which simply isn't going to happen.
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Old 01-03-2012, 12:14 PM   #10
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I'm getting the impression that he just wants to hack his Tivo to get around paying for the Tivo service, which simply isn't going to happen.
I'm not sure about his intent, but maybe.

In any case you are correct about the lack of help on that score: hardly anybody over there was ever (as far as I can remember) into helping people cheat Tivo, just adding flexibility to what, originally, was a somewhat open platform. There was much regard for Tivo as a company and actually some communication back and forth for the benefit of all. Even now that Tivo has gone innovatively belly up and the good guys are long gone, nobody is going to help him steal service.
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Old 01-04-2012, 11:45 PM   #11
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Considering that he's asking for a complete guide to hacking a Tivo that he only paid $13 for I doubt he's going to be willing to put in the time and effort required for any learning curve on the subject. I'm getting the impression that he just wants to hack his Tivo to get around paying for the Tivo service, which simply isn't going to happen.
Hardly! I don't want to get free subscriptions!
I want to do the following 2 things:

1. I bought it used so it already has recordings on it from the previous owner. I can play them back fine on the TIVO (one of the few things I CAN do without a subscription), but I want to transfer them to my computer. This requires something called an MAK (media access key) which is the password I need to use with TIVOtogo software to transfer the files, but I find that it doesn't display the MAK on the settings screen (cause I don't have an active subscription). I want a way to transfer the recordings off of the TIVO onto my harddrive WITHOUT having to get a subscription.

2. I don't want to pay for the basic feature of recording. This is a feature that should exist even without a subscription. Subscription should only add TV guide and automatically activated recordings and other "extra" features. TIVO should even without a subscription be able to act as the digital equivalent of a VCR and record digitally to a harddrive what a VCR would record analog to a tape. This means I should be able to plug in a camcorder, security camera, PC with composite-video output on the video card, or even Nintendo Wii to the composite-video input port on the TIVO and record whatever signal is coming in. This should be a basic NON-PAYED NON-SUBSCRIPTION feature that would exist in all TIVO devices. Sadly the company has NOT enabled this basic recording feature when running it without a subscription. Well I hope there is a hack to enable this. I hope to be able to do a simple hack that would let me do basic (manually started and manually stopped) recording.
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Old 01-05-2012, 12:09 AM   #12
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Hardly! I don't want to get free subscriptions!
I want to do the following 2 things:

1. I bought it used so it already has recordings on it from the previous owner. I can play them back fine on the TIVO (one of the few things I CAN do without a subscription), but I want to transfer them to my computer. This requires something called an MAK (media access key) which is the password I need to use with TIVOtogo software to transfer the files, but I find that it doesn't display the MAK on the settings screen (cause I don't have an active subscription). I want a way to transfer the recordings off of the TIVO onto my harddrive WITHOUT having to get a subscription.

2. I don't want to pay for the basic feature of recording. This is a feature that should exist even without a subscription. Subscription should only add TV guide and automatically activated recordings and other "extra" features. TIVO should even without a subscription be able to act as the digital equivalent of a VCR and record digitally to a harddrive what a VCR would record analog to a tape. This means I should be able to plug in a camcorder, security camera, PC with composite-video output on the video card, or even Nintendo Wii to the composite-video input port on the TIVO and record whatever signal is coming in. This should be a basic NON-PAYED NON-SUBSCRIPTION feature that would exist in all TIVO devices. Sadly the company has NOT enabled this basic recording feature when running it without a subscription. Well I hope there is a hack to enable this. I hope to be able to do a simple hack that would let me do basic (manually started and manually stopped) recording.
There is how things "should" be, and there is how things actually are.

Often, these differ.

This is one of those times.


The TiVo subscription pays for 3 things. Or 4 if you count the expense of just running the company.

1. It helps cover the fact that the hardware was originally sold a lot closer to cost than a normal retail markup would have been. It's sort of like King Gillette's scheme years ago of giving away razor handles or selling them cheaply and making the money selling the razor blades.

2. It covers the money TiVo has to turn around and pay to Tribune Media Services, which is where the actual guide data (what shows are on which channels when) comes from.

3. It covers what you pay them to be allowed to use the software they created to make the TiVo work.

Perhaps they could have done it a different way, but this is how they chose to do it.

You can subscribe that unit for $12.95 per month and cancel anytime (they recently dropped the one year commitment they previously required).

Why not try it for a month?

You can download the free version of TiVo Desktop and copy off the recordings and watch them on the computer, and if you ever subscribe another TiVo (series 2 or newer), you can copy them from the computer to it.

Maybe you'll decide you like it enough to keep subscribing. (Maybe you'll even decide you want to open it up and stick in a 1TB hard drive with the right SATA/IDE adapter) If not, you can cancel.
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Old 01-05-2012, 07:05 AM   #13
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Hardly! I don't want to get free subscriptions!
I want to do the following 2 things:

1. I bought it used so it already has recordings on it from the previous owner. I can play them back fine on the TIVO (one of the few things I CAN do without a subscription), but I want to transfer them to my computer.
I agree with Unitron on this one. Your best bet would be to simply subscribe to the Tivo service for a month to try it out and use Tivo Desktop to transfer the recordings to your PC. There's no need to hack the Tivo for a feature that's already included. $12.95 is cheap compared to the time and effort you'll put out just to perform a few simple hacks.

Quote:
2. I don't want to pay for the basic feature of recording.
There is no way to get around this without having a paid subscription. There are other Tivos that have limited recording functionality without a paid sub, but I suspect you aren't planning to buy a different Tivo just to have it.
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Old 01-06-2012, 09:40 AM   #14
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Maybe a VCR from the good will shop would be a better investment. VHS tapes can be picked from the trash and there is a record button. There is one financial challenge in operating a VCR, you still have to pay for electricity. Now, can we call it a day.

Last edited by mdm08033 : 01-06-2012 at 09:43 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 01-06-2012, 06:43 PM   #15
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The only way to get the recordings of your TiVo, as it is, is to copy them by playing them, and recording the A/V to a capture card or DVD recorder.

But yes, network transfer and even basic recording are two features that are exclusively part of the pay TiVo service (mostly a license to use the TiVo software) for that model. Availing yourself of them without paying for the privelege, is in fact stealing from TiVo. It is no different than using a hacked product key to use a copy of Windows, to avoid buying a legit product key.
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:31 PM   #16
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Just curious how you knew those shows were on there when you bought it from the Goodwill for $13? Like mentioned before, if those shows are worth another $13 then get a months subscription and transfer away. You have 30 days to clear the drive.

It's unfortunate those Tivo's take a prom mod before you can do any hacking.
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Old 01-07-2012, 08:22 AM   #17
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Just curious how you knew those shows were on there when you bought it from the Goodwill for $13? Like mentioned before, if those shows are worth another $13 then get a months subscription and transfer away. You have 30 days to clear the drive.

It's unfortunate those Tivo's take a prom mod before you can do any hacking.
I don't believe he ever mentioned that he was aware of what was on the drive when he bought the Tivo. You can see what's on the drive without a paid subscription as well as play back whatever was previously recorded. If the model Tivo supports MRV then all he needs to do is get it subbed and then he can transfer all of the shows to his PC. There's absolutely no need to do any type of hacking. I'm pretty sure the series 2 Tivos can be hacked using killhdintrd (or the SApper script posted in this forum) without having to swap out the PROM.
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Old 01-07-2012, 05:46 PM   #18
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Unless I missed something, 5xx and 6xx TiVos still need a PROM mod.
Only the 2xx and lower models can be hacked with software (HDD system) level hacks.
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Old 01-07-2012, 11:02 PM   #19
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I don't believe he ever mentioned that he was aware of what was on the drive when he bought the Tivo. You can see what's on the drive without a paid subscription as well as play back whatever was previously recorded. If the model Tivo supports MRV then all he needs to do is get it subbed and then he can transfer all of the shows to his PC. There's absolutely no need to do any type of hacking. I'm pretty sure the series 2 Tivos can be hacked using killhdintrd (or the SApper script posted in this forum) without having to swap out the PROM.
They did express their desire to retain the shows on the drive. Did he buy this thing, hook it up and looked at the shows on the disk and said, "wow, I have to save those shows. This was a worthwhile investment"...
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Old 01-08-2012, 05:26 AM   #20
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Unless I missed something, 5xx and 6xx TiVos still need a PROM mod.
Only the 2xx and lower models can be hacked with software (HDD system) level hacks.
You didn't. 649s requires a PROM mod.
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Old 01-08-2012, 09:38 AM   #21
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Does anybody know if it is possible to upload shows to a Series 2 without subscription?
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Old 01-08-2012, 10:11 AM   #22
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Does anybody know if it is possible to upload shows to a Series 2 without subscription?
If it is, it would only be after considerable modifications, possibly both hardware and software (and if you need to do a PROM mod, that's as expensive as the better part of a year's sub) and I'm not sure if it would be possible even then.

I'm pretty sure doing so falls into the category of stuff you can't do without a subscription without violating the terms under which one is licensed to use the TiVo software.

The more harsh name for that is, technically, "theft of service", I think.

If it's a one-time thing, TiVo has dropped the 1 year commitment requirement, so you could sub it for one month at $12.95, or $9.95 if you have any other TiVos currently subbed, including lifetimed ones, do the transfer, and still be able to watch the shows later on after the one month sub is over.
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Old 01-08-2012, 10:18 AM   #23
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You didn't. 649s requires a PROM mod.
The OP only indicated it was a series 2 standalone Tivo. He never provided a model number. He was also never specific about how he had his Tivo networked, although I believe he said he was using wireless, which could apply to older SA models capable of using TTG. However, if it is the dual-tuner 649 model then I agree with your assessment.
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Old 01-08-2012, 10:25 AM   #24
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You didn't. 649s requires a PROM mod.
What about 540s?
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Old 01-08-2012, 05:04 PM   #25
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What about 540s?

Yep, needs a prom mod... They are the same as the 649 except the 649 has two tuners.
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Old 01-09-2012, 05:40 AM   #26
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The OP only indicated it was a series 2 standalone Tivo. He never provided a model number. He was also never specific about how he had his Tivo networked, although I believe he said he was using wireless, which could apply to older SA models capable of using TTG. However, if it is the dual-tuner 649 model then I agree with your assessment.
The OP mentioned ethernet in another thread, so I assumed...
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:41 AM   #27
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I could also use a tutorial...

Hi, I found this thread when I was looking for some answers myself. Not to get around paying for anything, just so that I can use what I've already paid for! I have an old S2 (current software version 9.3.2b-01-2-540) with a lifetime subscription, and I'm just too poor to upgrade! In fact, I've been cutting back. This actually all started when I cancelled cable, and apparently got the "wrong" converter box for Tivo to receive my over-the-air channels (guess Tivo and Coby aren't friends?). I got some info and programs to run from an Aussie site, but I'm having lots of trouble making heads or tails of it (it assumes I know more than I do!), and now I'm no longer sure that it will even work for my software version. All I want is to get Tivo and Coby to play nicely with each other - I don't need anything besides that!

I'm a newbie at this whole hacking thing, but I'm not fainthearted and I do learn fast. I just need some instructions that don't assume that I'm perfectly comfortable with a command prompt. And that hopefully don't have me buying a whole bunch of stuff from the "shack" if it can be avoided. But you can go ahead and assume that I have a tool kit and know how to use it - 'cause that I do!

I'm a Mac girl for the most part, but I do have Windows on my MacBook Pro. So, I'd prefer to go thru Mac, but if I have to use Windows, I can do that.

Oh, and I haven't posted enough to be able to email anyone yet, but I've set it so that you can email me.

Thanks for reading!
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:53 AM   #28
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Update: I have figured out that if I type "bash" at the command prompt, I get what appears to be the Bash prompt that everyone seems to be talking about... but I'm still not sure how to communicate with my Tivo with it. Or if I've properly got my Tivo and computer connected.
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Old 03-22-2013, 03:54 AM   #29
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Nevermind... I just figured out that for my unit this would require detailed soldering, constant patch upgrades, etc. So unless I can actually hack my way from SD to HD and add a web browser that would let me stream shows directly from TV networks' websites (which could make it worth it) I'm just going to send the Coby back and get a different converter box!
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Old 03-22-2013, 04:16 AM   #30
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Update: I have figured out that if I type "bash" at the command prompt, I get what appears to be the Bash prompt that everyone seems to be talking about... but I'm still not sure how to communicate with my Tivo with it. Or if I've properly got my Tivo and computer connected.
You may be taking an approach that's not really necessary to do what you need to do.

Chances are it's the Coby that would have to be "hacked" to make it work with the TiVo and not the other way around.

Except that would probably have to be a hardware hack and not a software one, which immediately makes replacing the Coby with a converter from TiVo's approved list a less expensive way to go.

How long ago did you get the Coby?

What is the model number of it?

(If we can figure out who made it for them, we might be able to figure out which IR code database to use)

In which part of the country are you?

How do you get internet?
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