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Old 05-28-2013, 03:13 PM   #1
htjazz
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TiVos changing themselves to CNN, need reboot

I have two TiVo HDs in my house with CableCards from Time Warner. About three months ago, they started turning to CNN by themselves. It's very random. It happens in the middle of the day and middle of the night, two times a day or once a week. If it happens while in the middle of recording, it continues to record. However, I've also come home to find recordings are half of what I set and half CNN. Once it turns to CNN, nothing works except rebooting. Has anyone else experienced anything like this? Any suggestions? Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:18 AM   #2
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Doesn't sound exactly the same but many of us with TiVo's on TWC SW Ohio get wildly varying behavior in response to EAS (Emergency Alert System) alerts. During the alerts, which last about 2 minutes, the TiVo goes completely unresponsive to any remote button presses. And one of the following behaviors occurs:
1. Channel is switched to CSPAN2.
2. Video goes black and no audio.
3. A very distorted version of the EAS message appears on a black background.

Afterwards normal operation is restored but the state of what you were watching is not restored and the effect on recordings in process is unpredictable. On one occasion the EAS caused the loss of all SDV channels and I had to power cycle my Tuning Adapter and restart the TiVo, something I have to do every few weeks anyway.

Response #2 has been the most common one for me lately. I'm afraid to complain about this because I know how clueless and unmotivated TWC is regarding TiVo issues. I'm very concerned they will make things worse if they start trying to fix it.
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:39 AM   #3
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Thanks for your response, dlfl. We're still getting our EAS messages/tests/interruptions as usual. It doesn't change channels when it does that--stops whatever recording we're watching or prevents us from changing channels while the message is displayed. This odd thing with changing to CNN is new and in addition to that. TWC is coming next week to switch out our cable cards and tuning adapters (to--as they said "rule that out"), but considering it's happening on two different TiVo boxes at the same time, I highly doubt that's the issue. Like you--I don't want them to make the problem worse. Their advanced technical support team just left a message for me. I'll post that exchange when I hear back from them. Thanks.
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:20 AM   #4
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If you put the DVR into standby when you are not using it then because no one is watching the EAS is ignored.
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:43 AM   #5
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Quote:
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If you put the DVR into standby when you are not using it then because no one is watching the EAS is ignored.
But scheduled recordings are still recorded while in standby.
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Old 05-31-2013, 12:44 PM   #6
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But scheduled recordings are still recorded while in standby.
And will not switch to the EAS channel.
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Old 05-31-2013, 02:28 PM   #7
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Thanks all for your responses. New developments:

After I initially spoke with TWC and they scheduled a tech to switch out our cablecards and tuning adapters, the next day I started receiving phone calls from the "advanced technical support team." I use the word "advanced" loosely, but that's what they call themselves. The last person I spoke with yesterday called and said he had "adjusted" our signal and asked me to look at the TV to see if it's okay. I told him "they're fine. They're always fine until the problem happens." He said it was "fixed" and everything should work and he cancelled the tech.

This morning, I got up at 3:45 and saw the issue when it happened. We were about to have storms in the area and sure enough the EAS came on and the TiVo switched to CNN and stayed. I got up to watch and record a program at 4 and I didn't want it to stick on CNN like it usually does, so I rebooted. Right after I rebooted, the EAS came on again and went back to CNN. Fortunately, it went back to the channel I was about to watch/record.

Now I need to call TWC again. In all the years I've had TiVo, when the EAS comes on it always shows the message and goes away. It NEVER changed the channel until three months ago. AND I went to my older TiVo series 2 while it was happening. The message was on it, but it didn't change channels. I'm hoping when I pass this info on to TWC they can pinpoint the problem and fix it. But since I'm afraid they will screw it up further, I won't be calling them back until the French Open is over next week.
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Old 05-31-2013, 03:26 PM   #8
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Ahem .... perhaps you will grant me a minor "I told you so" ?

If they find a fix, please post it here. I might want to make my TWC system aware of it.

Possibly relevant is the OS Version of your CableCARD. There are many different versions around and my TWC at least, never pushes updates.
In my Tivo HD's menu system this is found at:
Messages & Settings ... Account & System Information ... CableCARD Decoders ... Configure CableCARD 1 (Multi-Stream) ... CableCARD Menu ... Cisco CableCARD Diag Screen ... Os Ver.

And my version is PKEY1.5.3_F.p.0601
There is an entire thread here talking about CC software versions but I just spent five minutes searching for it with no luck. I don't recall anything related to this particular problem however. I suspect (as always) the problem is TWC sending incorrect signals.

My EAS responses got noticeably more flakey after swapping out 2 S-Cards for 1 M-card. As I'm writing this an EAS just came through and this time it has frozen the video of the channel I was watching live, and after 2 minutes that channel resumed -- one of the less irritating behaviors.
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Old 05-31-2013, 03:40 PM   #9
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Yes dlfl--I will grant you an "I told you so." . I'm glad I was up to see it happen. Of course I will post any info I get going forward. I'm at work now, but I did look at the cablecard menu a couple of days ago and I remember being bothered by seeing "firmware: not updated." TWC suport did give me a special number to call for for their TiVo/cablecard support. I'll let you know what happens. Thanks.
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:27 PM   #10
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Left wing conspiracy....
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:55 PM   #11
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UPDATE: spoke with TiVo on Monday and they determined it was a TWC issue. The TiVo rep called TWC and explained the problem, then connected me to the call. TWC is coming out tomorrow to replace the tuning adapters and cablecards after all. I'll let you know what happens.
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Old 06-06-2013, 05:40 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlfl View Post
Ahem .... perhaps you will grant me a minor "I told you so" ?

If they find a fix, please post it here. I might want to make my TWC system aware of it.

Possibly relevant is the OS Version of your CableCARD. There are many different versions around and my TWC at least, never pushes updates.
In my Tivo HD's menu system this is found at:
Messages & Settings ... Account & System Information ... CableCARD Decoders ... Configure CableCARD 1 (Multi-Stream) ... CableCARD Menu ... Cisco CableCARD Diag Screen ... Os Ver.

And my version is PKEY1.5.3_F.p.0601
There is an entire thread here talking about CC software versions but I just spent five minutes searching for it with no luck. I don't recall anything related to this particular problem however. I suspect (as always) the problem is TWC sending incorrect signals.

My EAS responses got noticeably more flakey after swapping out 2 S-Cards for 1 M-card. As I'm writing this an EAS just came through and this time it has frozen the video of the channel I was watching live, and after 2 minutes that channel resumed -- one of the less irritating behaviors.
Cisco CableCARD OS Version (Firmware) Thread
http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...d.php?t=502486
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:03 AM   #13
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Thanks for that info CoxInPHX. I looked for a software version, but couldn't find one.

Here's the UPDATE: TWC just left. They put new multistream cards in both TiVos. "New" is a strong word. The date on the new cards was June 2009. The cards they removed were both from 2007. On one box, when the card was inserted, it immediately started doing a firmware update. I asked the tech why it didn't update on the other box and he said it may have already been updated. Now I just have to wait for an EAS message and see what happens. My question is why are the cable cards so old? And do they need to be provided by TWC? Can I buy my own and just have it activated by TWC?
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:51 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by htjazz View Post
My question is why are the cable cards so old? And do they need to be provided by TWC? Can I buy my own and just have it activated by TWC?
To TWC, or any cable company, user-installed CableCards in 3rd party devices are a very small portion of their market. You're right to quote "new." These cards have likely already been in circulation somewhere and were recently turned back in to your local office. CableCards have been around long enough that TWC has probably judged an "equilibrium" number of M-cards they need to have around for 3rd party device installs. Unless they have a lot of failures, or a big uptick in CableCard installs, they're likely to just keep cycling old inventory to control costs.

To the second question, No. While you can buy CableCards on eBay and the like, getting a provider to authorize it is a no-go. They want you're money perpetually via monthly service fee for something that would be paid for after about 6 months of fees.
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Old 06-06-2013, 12:43 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by htjazz View Post
Thanks for that info CoxInPHX. I looked for a software version, but couldn't find one.

Here's the UPDATE: TWC just left. They put new multistream cards in both TiVos. "New" is a strong word. The date on the new cards was June 2009. The cards they removed were both from 2007. On one box, when the card was inserted, it immediately started doing a firmware update. I asked the tech why it didn't update on the other box and he said it may have already been updated. Now I just have to wait for an EAS message and see what happens. My question is why are the cable cards so old? And do they need to be provided by TWC? Can I buy my own and just have it activated by TWC?
Life being generally perverse, it could turn out that having "old" cards and/or "old" card software versions might result in better EAS response. The response must also depend on what signals TWC sends out and it's possible they send signals that are more compatible with older versions.

Lately, my EAS response has been two minutes of black screen, no audio, and no response to the remote other than the "bonk" sound. Hard to think of any other response that would be more likely to convince a novice Tivo user that their TiVo has locked up yet again, thus providing an incentive to dump TiVo -- coincidentally exactly what TWC would like them to do.
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Old 06-20-2013, 08:23 AM   #16
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Well--it's been two weeks since the "new" cards were installed and there haven't been any problems. I'm hoping that solved it. I'll post if there are any developments. Thanks all for your responses.
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