2nd failed Bolt+ HD

Discussion in 'TiVo Bolt DVR/Streamer' started by MetalDog, Feb 4, 2020.

  1. bobfrank

    bobfrank Active Member

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    Just be sure the offer is really from Tivo. Phone Tivo support and give them the case number to verify it is legitimate. In order to send you the replacement before you return your current Bolt, Tivo will need a credit card number.
     
    cwerdna likes this.
  2. Dodge DeBoulet

    Dodge DeBoulet Member

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    Pretty sure it's legitimate. The contact link in the email was for TiVo's web support page, and when I went there to notify them that I'm interested in a replacement, it created a new case and generated a confirmation email that had essentially the same email headers. The original email also had my Bolt+'s TSN in it and used my full first name in the greeting.

    I just thought it was odd that I'd be getting this option unsolicited, and on a unit that's well beyond the end of its warranty period. We'll see what happens ... but I don't expect to hear anything more until tomorrow at the earliest. Fortunately the Bolt+ has been performing normally.
     
  3. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    Ashland, PA...
    Question. If I was offered to swap units, and my Bolt has a bunch of programs and movies on it, I would like to use Online to copy those to the new unit. Not so long ago there were several posts where members transferred programs to a TE4 TiVo and found that they stopped after 10 minutes. Has that been fixed? No recent posts seem to indicate it is no longer a problem and we haven't seen release notes in a while.

    I have a hard time believing TiVo knows the status of my hard drive. Perhaps something happens and it indirectly causes a fault that sends a message to TiVo. I've looked through the system logs and only understand 1% of what's there.
     
  4. V7Goose

    V7Goose OTA ONLY and Loving It!

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    This would have been odd in the past, but those Bolts have been so unreliable that they have started doing this to save a little face. Frankly, I do not think it is a wise solution (accepting a free replacement), since the same garbage hard drive will just fail early again. Furthermore, the replacement box that many people have received is just a returned Bolt that already has other problems that their original box did not have.

    In my opinion, a much better option for you is to just buy a WD Red or Purple 3.5" drive in whatever size you like and use an external enclosure to permanently solve that drive failure problem.
     
  5. HerronScott

    HerronScott Well-Known Member

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    Don't be surprised as our TiVo's do send hardware information back including what model hard drive is installed such as when you upgrade. They've just always turned a blind eye to our upgrades in the past except for very few reported issues.

    Drive SMART status would definitely be something they would want to get back both for warranty coverage as well as for metrics on drive failures across the board (such as in this case).

    Scott
     
  6. Dodge DeBoulet

    Dodge DeBoulet Member

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    I received a followup email stating that I would need to call them to provide verbal agreement for the swap, so I'll have a list of questions ready for them ... i.e. new vs. refurbished, type of hard drive, warranty provided, etc.

    Regarding the installation of an external drive ... my assumption is that the internal drive would still be required as the boot device, and its failure would still present a pretty significant issue. If they've got some indication that it's going to die, wouldn't I still be better off getting the whole unit replaced?
     
    Mikeguy likes this.
  7. HerronScott

    HerronScott Well-Known Member

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    Staunton, VA
    I don't believe there are any large capacity (above 500GB) 2.5" AV/DVR drives (checking Seagate and Western Digital). But TiVo users here have been using standard 3.5" Green drives in earlier models for years without any issues (I'll admit that I did always use an AV/DVR model in our S3 and HD's even though slightly more expensive). I think there's either a reliability issue with the WD 3TB model or possibly the cooling which is causing a larger number of failures and TiVo's proactively notifying users for replacements.

    I upgraded my son's Bolt with the 2TB version of the WD blue drive 2 years ago but also replaced the factory fan so will be interesting to see how long it lasts.

    Scott
     
  8. bobfrank

    bobfrank Active Member

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    Per the earlier posts, I'm happy you're satisfied the offer is really from Tivo. I'm just paranoid about offers out of the blue by email.

    You assumption is incorrect about keeping the old internal drive. You would run a cable from the new external drive to the internal connector inside the Bolt. The external drive becomes the only drive on the system. It usually requires a case modification and possibily a power supply for the external drive.

    There are several threads here on the forums about replacing the internal drive with an external drive.
     
  9. Dodge DeBoulet

    Dodge DeBoulet Member

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    I just got off the phone with TiVo's customer support, and they're shipping me a new 6-tuner Bolt Vox to replace my Bolt+. Should be here Thursday.

    They told me that if I wanted "advance replacement" I would need to provide a credit card number. I objected, indicating that the email said I would be able to transfer my existing programs to the new unit and there would be no cost, which (to me) means that a credit card shouldn't be necessary.

    The tech agreed to waive the credit card requirement :D

    EDIT: Actually, he didn't specify the size, but he did indicate that feature-wise, the new unit would be as good as or better than the one it replaces. However I just checked the TiVo web site and only 500GB and 1TB Bolt VOXes are listed..
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2020
    Mikeguy likes this.
  10. bobfrank

    bobfrank Active Member

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    I had my first Bolt replaced by Tivo for a dead hard drive (flashing lights of death) in November and just received a replacement for that one in the last few days because of an unidentified hardware failure on the first replacement. In both cases I received a 3TB drive to replace my original 3TB drive. So you should be fine.

    You're lucky to get the credit card requirement to be waived. I wasn't able to get them to to that.
     
  11. cwerdna

    cwerdna Proud Tivolutionary

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    SF Bay Area, CA
    The original 3 TB drive in my Bolt+ that I bought in April 2017 as part of the "once in a lifetime" $99 transfer offer still works fine. (crossing fingers) I bought the extended warranty, as well.

    For the longest time, I've also been providing extra cooling to the unit via various laptop cooling pads which have fan(s).
     
  12. Davelnlr_

    Davelnlr_ N5GGG

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    I went through 3 Tivo Vox refurbs, and the 4th actually worked. UPS thought I was nuts mailed 4 Tivo's back at once.
    I removed the cablecard door, and placed the unit on a laptop cooler. If it fails again, Im going to remove the motherboard, and move the whole shebang into an old TivoHD case, and use a 3.5" drive or just put a 2TB SSD in the bolt case. I cannot believe they didn't stick with what worked (Premier and Roamio cases). No one said I want a tiny DVR, as far as I know.
    As for them knowing its going to fail, I suspect it probably sends a S.M.A.R.T. report to them when you connect each day.
     
  13. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    People indeed have been impressed by this, both by TiVo's unsolicited contact as well as the ignoring of the warranty period. And then by the fact of TiVo's seeming monitoring of diagnostics, to detect an issue.
     
  14. cwerdna

    cwerdna Proud Tivolutionary

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    SF Bay Area, CA
    Yep.
     
  15. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    While it's nice people are using advanced cooling techniques, there isn't a shred of proof that it will help in any way. In fact, it could hurt if the airflow going around the hard drive is slowed down or heated up.

    This happens all the time with WD and Seagate hard drives. They have certain models which are flat out unreliable. Since there are no 2 or 3 TB 2.5" hard drives to replace it with, and the Bolt+ is allowed to run TE3 (which I'm guessing prevents them from using the 2 TB SMR drive in the Edge), Rovi can't do anything except ship unused Bolt+ units.
     
  16. Dodge DeBoulet

    Dodge DeBoulet Member

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    So are the Bolt Voxen just leftover Bolt+ units with a new remote? I know the device hardware is identical, so it's probably a distinction without a difference ....
     
  17. cpgny9

    cpgny9 Member

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    Feb 28, 2006
    While I can't say for sure that the cooling techniques are helping with hard drive failures, i can say for sure that the unit itself seems to run better since I added a AC infinity AIRCOM S7 cooling fan under the bolt. Pixelation went away, the unit and cable connector are no longer scolding hot, and if I unplug the unit, I dont have to wait 20 minutes for the unit to cool down before I can plug it back it and it start up - I can plug in back in right away and it starts right up now.
     
    Mikeguy likes this.
  18. UCLABB

    UCLABB Well-Known Member

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    Riverside, CA
    I agree. After my first HDD failure I used cooling and still had another failure. Went with a 3.5" drive.
     
  19. lhvetinari

    lhvetinari Si non confectus, non reficiat TCF Club

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    Chicago
    While I can't say for sure, I'm willing to say it's a good theory - after all, the model number is basically the same (TCD849300V1 vs TCD849300/V) and the 6-tuner black Voxen are recognised as Bolt+ in the TE3 NPL UI when you browse to one.
     
  20. Willy92

    Willy92 Member

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    Oct 12, 2018
    Los Angeles
    I bought mine through Weak Knees, it's their Bolt VOX 4 tuner upgraded to 3tb. I've had it for a year and a half, no problems yet. I also got their extended warranty, but lifetime tivo through tivo.

    So far, so good.
     

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