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Old 04-15-2006, 05:50 PM   #1
LastPlace
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Question Can't boot with Instant Cake

HELP!

After two days of trying to replace my failing hard drive with a new one I am still nowhere I thought the whole process would be easy but...

I gave up on trying to "copy" the old HD to the new one and then last night I felt like I was cheating because I bought Instant Cake by download. But now I can't get that work either!

Now the computer is booting from the CD drive but for the life of me now that I have a bootable CD working it doesn't start Instant Cake nor when I get to the A:\ (CD-ROM) do I see anything other than DOS files names when I type DIR.

I've been doing A LOT of reading but I'm just always seem to be missing the thing that's going to set me straight - Please Help - I'm running out of CD-Rs and I don't have any CD-RWs in the house - and I'd hate to step away from my computer to buy more without having this FIXED!

Thanx!
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Old 04-15-2006, 06:03 PM   #2
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Quote:
Now the computer is booting from the CD drive but for the life of me now that I have a bootable CD working it doesn't start Instant Cake nor when I get to the A:\ (CD-ROM) do I see anything other than DOS files names when I type DIR.
There should be no "DOS" at all. How exactly did you create the InstantCake CD?
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Old 04-15-2006, 07:23 PM   #3
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Don't try to create a bootable cd; just use something like Nero and use the burn image option. Whatever burning program you use, find out how to burn iso image files to disk.
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Old 04-15-2006, 09:17 PM   #4
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Hi All -

I finally did get a good boot CD went through the whole InstantCake process - short & sweet and installed the new drive in to the TiVo - but NOW the TiVO just hangs on "Powering up..." (for more than an hour).

Any suggestions?

Boy, it sure has been one thing after another for me... and yet I still know it should be easy and if I can get through this, I'm going to do my brother's next!

Thanx!
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Old 04-15-2006, 09:36 PM   #5
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check the ribbon cable on the tivo HD, its jumpers, and make sure it's power connector is plugged in.
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Old 04-16-2006, 12:12 AM   #6
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Thumbs down

UPDATE - Still stuck on "Powering up...".

Thanx for the suggestions on the cables etc. I was just getting ready to move on to the jumper figuring I didn't have anything to lose...

I went through and reseated the ribbon and power cable first and it still stuck on PU...

Then I resat the jumper for Master

and then I tried it as Cable Select

and then as a Slave

I was originally replacing the drive due to pixelating and stuttering so based upon my understanding that problem (once I ruled out the cable connection) would only be due to the hard drive.

However, I figured I'd try a different ribbon but the part that plugs in to the TiVo isn't the same as the extra PC one that I had, so I couldn't try that.

I can't swap out the power cable because that's "glued" to the TiVo.

There's GOT to be something I'm not thinking of - I am sorry to be such a beggar - I'm used to being the one people call for help, not the one asking for it

But thank you for your time and in advance for any help you can give me!!
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Old 04-16-2006, 12:34 AM   #7
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This may sound weird but...

When I upgraded my 2nd TiVo, I got the drives imaged and mounted on my twinbreeze bracket. I put everything in, and -- same hangup issue you have. I knew it had to be a wiring thing, so I checked all the wiring. It turned out that a couple of pins on one end of the splitter I got from weaknees were loose & would slide back from the frame as I plugged it into the HD. By holding the wires firmly as I inserted the frame, I was able to seat them all properly. Problem solved. So my advice would be to check the cable connections one more time, looking for loose individual wires.

BTW, I was a little plssy about the splitter thing for some reason & emailed weaknees to complain. They offered to replace the cable. I had cooled off by the time they replied (maybe 48 hrs on a weekend), plus I had a working TiVo , so I told them not to bother.
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Old 04-16-2006, 08:35 AM   #8
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I'm still at it and think the problem is the new drive but how do I figure out which it is

1. Bad drive
2. I had booted the PC to Windows with the NTFS C:\ drive attached (obviously) and the new ST3160023A-RK - do InstantCake or Weaknees overwrite this problem?

When I had first used the Weaknees directions/download it had seemed everything went fine (other than bad sectors on the original TiVo drive) and then when I installed it in the TiVo it just hung on the "Powering up..." screen.

It's my understanding that booting to Windows writes to the first 512 on the HD and that creates a problem so I thought the fix was to buy InstantCake and use that to reimage the replacement drive but that just hung on the same "PU..." screen - I reseated all the cables and tried the jumpers in all the different positions as well as redoing the InstantCake somewhere in all of that.

THEN I tried hooking up the old TiVo drive and it booted fine!

So, then I redid the Weakneeds mfsbackup | mfsrestore again and have tried the new drive with each of the jumper settings.

Well, you guessed it, the TiVo is still "Powering up..." and I'm pretty wiped out!

Now that it's Easter everybody's closed or I'd try buying a different hard drive - any suggestions for me try in the meantime?

Thanx!
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Old 04-16-2006, 09:17 AM   #9
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I am new to Tivo, but was told that it is using a form of Linux. When you added your drive to a Microsoft (MS) system MS did put a signature on it.

"It's my understanding that booting to Windows writes to the first 512 on the HD and that creates a problem so I thought the fix was to buy InstantCake and use that to reimage the replacement drive but that just hung on the same "

I would suggest that you use the DOS command FDISK on the new drive to remove the signature and try the directions given to you to use InstantCake. Maybe having this signature removed will let Linux boot without interference from MS.

I have relatives that have successfully cloned their Tivo drives as insurance against electrical problems..

Good luck and Happy Easter.

Matt
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Old 04-16-2006, 09:18 AM   #10
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also search the internet for maketivobootable
it's a utility that erases this signature
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Old 04-16-2006, 11:28 AM   #11
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Ok, you need to back up and gain a basic understanding of the way linux maps your IDE drives. This is an example of how it maps out:

hda PRIMARY MASTER DRIVE
hdb PRIMARY SLAVE DRIVE
hdc SECONDARY MASTER DRIVE
hdd SECONDARY SLAVE DRIVE

If you have other IDE controllers, you would have more drive-letters mapped. But, let's assume not. So, let's say your setup was the following:

hda WINDOWS NTFS DRIVE
hdb CDROM DEVICE
hdc NEW TIVO DRIVE
hdd NOTHING

Now, you should be able to see which drive is mapped to what letter when those boot messages go by. What, you missed them, well hold down the SHIFT key and hit page up. You should see the drive (Brand name, size, etc.) and the drive letter it is mapped to. If you have entered a lot of other commands and it's gone from the screen buffer, just type dmesg and the boot message will scroll by again.

Ok, so let's talk about MakeTivoBootable; now depending on where your root is located either partition 4 or partition 7 on the restored tivo drive. I told you to check it with "bootpage -p" which is on the ptvupgrade.com boot cd. I suggest you do yourself a favor and get the free one here.PTVLBA48BootDisk

The MakeTivoBootable command, assuming your root is on the fourth partition.

MakeTiVoBootable -d /dev/hdc --pk 3 --ak 6 --bp root=/dev/hda4

If that doesn't work try it on the 7th partition.

MakeTiVoBootable -d /dev/hdc --pk 6 --ak 3 --bp root=/dev/hda7

Hopefully, this will get you going.

Last edited by MungoJerrie : 04-16-2006 at 12:23 PM.
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Old 04-16-2006, 08:05 PM   #12
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When I had first used the Weaknees directions/download it had seemed everything went fine (other than bad sectors on the original TiVo drive) and then when I installed it in the TiVo it just hung on the "Powering up..." screen.


When the tivo boots it need to verify the disk. This process needs more information than will fit into system memory. To keep track of this data it writes to a section of disk called swap space.

In the original description of the problem you did not state make/model or sizes of the drives you are using. You also neglected to mention what commands you ran to perform the backup and restore. Thus, I cannot rule out other possible problems. However, the symptoms you are seeing are consistent with incorrect configuration of swap space.

First, I will give you a rule of thumb. You should have approximately 1MB of swap for each GB of disk on the system. In a multiple drive setup, you will need to add the drive sizes together and use the total number to determine how much swap space to make. After creating swap space it needs to be initialized. If it is less than 127, the initialization will be correctly handled by mfstool. If it is larger than that, you will need to run another command to initialize it for you.

Here is an example.
If you wanted to replace your old drive with a 300GiB drive and create 150MB of swap space on the new drive, you might use the following commands when booted from the PTVUpgrade CD:

mfstool backup -Tao - /dev/hdOLD | mfstool restore -s 150 -pxi - /dev/hdNEW
tpip -s --swapped /dev/hdNEW

I these commands replace "OLD" and "NEW" with the appropriate drive letters.

If you are installing on a large drive and either do not create enough swap, or fail to initialize large swap spaces before installing the drive in a Tivo, then the system will never get beyond the initial boot phases. If swap space problems are causing your failure, the above technique will work.

On larger drives you may also need to use a larger allocation block size, in addition to setting up swap space. I believe that you need to add -r3 to the restore command when any media partition will be very large. However, since I have never used drives larger than 300GiB, I have not used or studied the use of that option. If you are using larger drives I suggest you search this forum for examples and use '-r' appropriately if you need to.

Last edited by jedwards : 04-16-2006 at 08:10 PM. Reason: I use html instead of vbcode for italic.
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Old 04-16-2006, 10:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jedwards
Here is an example.
If you wanted to replace your old drive with a 300GiB drive and create 150MB of swap space on the new drive, you might use the following commands when booted from the PTVUpgrade CD:

mfstool backup -Tao - /dev/hdOLD | mfstool restore -s 150 -pxi - /dev/hdNEW
tpip -s --swapped /dev/hdNEW
I've been wondering about this with the use of InstantCake. Does it handle the tpip stuff for you with large drives, or can you not use IC if you need swap > 127? (ie a HD > 250GB)
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Old 04-17-2006, 01:25 PM   #14
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I've been wondering about this with the use of InstantCake. Does it handle the tpip stuff for you with large drives, or can you not use IC if you need swap > 127? (ie a HD > 250GB)

I have no idea. I have no experience with Instant Cake. I can only speak confidently about the image which is a free download from that site.

You may be able to discover an answer on your own. Booted from the instant cake CD, try running the command:
tpip --version

If tpip is on the CD (and in your executable search path) then this will cause tpip to report its version number and exit. If tpip is on the instant cake CD, use it to format any swap > 127 that you have created.

I do not know specifically, how you have created you new image, anything about your disks, or what bad blocks you may have encountered when reading the old image. However, in general:
1. If you created a new image without specifying enough swap space, you should redo it and create a larger swap partition.
2. If you create a large swap partition, it *must* be configured for use, using tpip or some other tool.
3. Since some combinations of bootcd and boot options result in accessing data on the tivo partitions using byteswapping and other do not, you may need to use different options with tpip. Tpip takes only seconds to run, so if in doubt, trying to format the swap space again after a failed attempt to boot is a cheap and good thing to try. (try it with the --swapped argument the second time if you omitted it the first time, or vice versa)
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Old 04-17-2006, 01:48 PM   #15
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I was kinda speaking on the OP's behave (since he is trying to use InstantCake.)

Myself, I used mfstools and tpip just as you said.

tpip is on the InstantCake CD. Just don't know if their script runs it all. Seems like it could be a problem.
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Old 04-17-2006, 10:02 PM   #16
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Since this thread has been inactive for a day, I hope it is okay if I ask a question?

Sure glad I read this as I was trying to make an image of my HD also. I just realized I put it in XP and formated it. If I understand right, PTVLBA48BootDisk will erase this signiture. I was trying mfstools and kept getting the message it was locked. I was going to try instantcake next as I am new to all this.

I would rather not make an image if one is already available, is it on PTVLBA48BootDisk or where?
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Last edited by coachO : 04-17-2006 at 10:03 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 04-17-2006, 10:10 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coachO
I would rather not make an image if one is already available, is it on PTVLBA48BootDisk or where?
AFAIK, that disc does not have an image on it. It just has mfstools software required to restore or make a backup image from your own drive.

InstantCake is the only place that I know of where you can get an image.

There also seems to a user on this forum you can PM and he will send you a link to an FTP site to download one, but I don't know the details.

Edit:

http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...ad.php?t=62430

Last edited by greg_burns : 04-17-2006 at 10:29 PM.
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Old 04-17-2006, 10:22 PM   #18
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Thanks Greg. Sure hope I get a PM from that user with the ftp site address. I really don't want the instant cake as I am trying to learn as much as I can about this whole process.

I also went through quite a learning curve getting my old xbox networked and with the ability to play video off my computers hard drive. Now I am ready to tackle adding my HD tivo to my system.
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Old 04-17-2006, 10:28 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coachO
Thanks Greg. Sure hope I get a PM from that user with the ftp site address. I really don't want the instant cake as I am trying to learn as much as I can about this whole process.

I also went through quite a learning curve getting my old xbox networked and with the ability to play video off my computers hard drive. Now I am ready to tackle adding my HD tivo to my system.
If you modded your Xbox you can handle this. I still boggles my mind what I went through to install the mod chip, find the executables, actually understand how to make it all work. But it was fun, and that's the point.

I've done both instantcake and mfstools. Wanted to see both sides of the equation. $20 is worth it to avoid the hassel of get an image IMO.

Are you saying you don't have a currently working Tivo? Cause if you do... you have an image.

Edit: added link to poster with ftp site (above)
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Old 04-18-2006, 05:14 AM   #20
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My HD Tivo works (whew) but I have to admit I was quite nervous as I had my HD hooked to my computer and trying mfstools, dd, etc and not being successful trying to make a copy. So, I am now going to start with an image ( thanks for the link) even though I think I know what I did wrong.

I was thinking instantcake did too much for me and didnt include all the mods that I want so maybe just an image would be a better place to start.
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Old 04-18-2006, 08:21 AM   #21
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MY TIVO WORKS AGAIN

THANK YOU! To so many of you who took the time to help me!!

The short answer is that (as I knew) all of my complications were "operator-error".

I'll write in later with the path I took to help others who may come upon this thread looking for help
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Old 04-18-2006, 09:01 PM   #22
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Thumbs up

In the event that my experience is helpful to anyone, here goes...

My TiVo was pixelating and stuttering on playback of recorded shows and live TV, too. After troubleshooting with TiVo I was given the opportunity to send in the unit for a replacement (it was out of warranty) for a cost of $150.

I had read it was easy to change the hard drive so I thought I would take the opportunity to expand my knowledge AND my hard drive cost and do it for less.

Well, throughout my three-day odyssey, I always knew it was supposed to be easy but I made some mistakes along the way:

1. I booted the computer to XP while the new hard drive was attached - I think that was my BIG killer. After messing around with the mfstools I did get the process to complete, supposedly successfully and the screen indicated that I had increased my hard drive capacity. When I then started up TiVo with the new drive, I never got past "Powering up..."

This could have been fixed but I couldn't seem to figure out how to MakeTiVoBootable to work - it downloaded as a file and I could never get it to function.

2. InstantCake really was easy - ONCE I figured out how to make the CD from the downloaded file. It needed to be copied as an image. Burning to CD and I have never really gotten along - it always seems to be more complicated to me than it should be.

One thing that I tried to reuse the erroneously-XP-booted hard drive was to write zeros to the whole drive using the Seagate software that came with it. Unfortunately that still didn't fix the problem.

Jumping around a little...

I had read the Hinsdale directions and thought I would be limited to 137GB hard drive so I purchased a 160GB hard drive so as not to have a huge amount of wasted space. After I got in to trouble with the XP booting another poster said WeaKnees would give me the software I needed to use the full 160GB. Of course then I wanted even more space.

CompUSA had a two-hour sale Monday morning so when I still couldn't get it to work by thenI trotted down to the store and bought a 250GB Maxtor for $60 after rebate.

Given the amount of time I had spent with the 160GB I didn't want to waste any more time and plopped that in the the computer, booted from InstantCake and was up and running in NO time.

PIECE OF CAKE

So again - THANK YOU to all who helped me directly and to those whose earlier posts helped me through the process! I would have like to salvage my recorded savings but I am no less a TiVo fan and am now off to enjoy watching it!
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Old 02-09-2014, 11:51 AM   #23
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How did you resolve the issue with the InstantCake CD not booting

How did you resolve the issue with the InstantCake CD not booting? I downloaded it for $40 unzipped it than using Nero burned the ISO to disk. The disk has all the files from the ISO expanded but it will not boot. Other bootable CDs boot fine on the computer but not the InstantCake disk. I downloaded again and burned another CD disk and get the same results. I tried to contact DVRUPGRADE but they had number phone number only E-mail, but it has been four days and no response. The drive is bad and itís a TIVO directv unit so not TV until I can replace the hard drive.
Does anybody have any idea how to get the InstantCake CD boot or how to contact DVRUPGRADE?
Unit is series 1 GXCEBOT

Thanks, Pat
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:45 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat514 View Post
How did you resolve the issue with the InstantCake CD not booting? I downloaded it for $40 unzipped it than using Nero burned the ISO to disk. The disk has all the files from the ISO expanded but it will not boot. Other bootable CDs boot fine on the computer but not the InstantCake disk. I downloaded again and burned another CD disk and get the same results. I tried to contact DVRUPGRADE but they had number phone number only E-mail, but it has been four days and no response. The drive is bad and itís a TIVO directv unit so not TV until I can replace the hard drive.
Does anybody have any idea how to get the InstantCake CD boot or how to contact DVRUPGRADE?
Unit is series 1 GXCEBOT

Thanks, Pat
What model TiVo do you have?

Do you mean not booting as in the PC acts like the cd isn't there?

In the case of any .iso file, I'm pretty sure the deal is you have to tell your burning software to burn it "as an image" so that the right bytes are in the right places.
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