8TB Premiere

Discussion in 'TiVo Upgrade Center' started by jmbach, Apr 9, 2017.

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  1. Apr 9, 2017 #1 of 106
    jmbach

    jmbach der Neuerer

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    For those that are interested in maxing their Premiere, RussMuscle and I developed a procedure with a new tool that can be used to expand your premiere to 8TB. No intermediate drive is necessary.

    First pick up the latest MFSTools from the post here.

    Then follow the following procedure. sdX is your source drive and sdY is your 8TB drive. You can use fdisk -l or lsblk -o name,size command to look at the sizes of the attached drives to determine which is the source and which is the 8TB.

    1) mfscopy -aiM 4000 /dev/sdX /dev/sdY or mfscopy -aim 2000 /dev/sdX /dev/sdY
    This step does 2 things for us. First it copies and expands the source image to the 8TB drive limiting the expansion to about 4TB in size. Second it rearranges the original partition layout from 1,13,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,14,10,12,11 to 1,11,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,14,10,12,13. The reason for this will be apparent later. Boot the drive in the TiVo to make sure the image connects to the TiVo servers and updates correctly.

    2) mfsadd -xM 6000 /dev/sdY
    This adds a new partition pair 15 (application) and 16 (media) to the image which adds another 2TB of recording space. Now the Premiere only allows for 15 partitions on the internal drive. So if you put the drive as is into the TiVo it will divorce off partition 16 leaving you with only the application partition that describes the extra 2TB recording space which now does not exist. When the TiVo tries to access this space, it will error out. This is why we need to to the next step.

    3) apmfix /dev/sdY
    The main purpose of this step is to coalesce partition 15 and 16 into partition 15. It also does some other manipulation of the APM and house keeping chores.

    4) Boot the 8TB drive in the TiVo and allow it to divorce the now non existent partition 16 if it asks. Once it boots up fully, you will need to connect it back to the computer for the next step.

    5) 8TBprep /dev/sdY
    The main purpose of this step is to make room for another expansion. Since mfscopy rearranged the partition layout when it copied, it placed partition 12 and 13 in such a way we can coalesce 12 and 13 in 12. Then we can rename partition 15 to partition 13 and now we are back to having 14 partitions. This allows us to add another partition 15.

    6) Boot the 8TB drive in the TiVo and allow it to divorce the now non existent partition 15 if it asks. Once it boots up fully, you will need to connect it back to the computer for the next two steps.

    7) mfsadd -x /dev/sdY

    8) apmfix /dev/sdY

    9) Boot the 8TB drive in the TiVo and allow it to divorce the now non existent partition 16 if it asks. Once it boots up fully, you now will enjoy 8TB of recording space.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2020
  2. Apr 9, 2017 #2 of 106
    ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    Curious to see what MFSTools INFO will show.
     
  3. Apr 9, 2017 #3 of 106
    RussMuscle

    RussMuscle New Member

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    Here is the mfstools info... IMG_20170409_201819.jpg IMG_20170409_201841.jpg
     
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  4. Apr 10, 2017 #4 of 106
    Cybernut

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    Awesome, jmbach!! Kudos to you for continuing to push the boundary of tivo DIY upgrades. Also thanks to new member RussMuscle.

    Couple questions - can I use the same process on a Tivo Roamio? I just bought myself an used TCD846500 (Roamio HD 500GB) model. If not, I can certainly use this on my old Premiere 4 model, that I upgraded to 4TB with jmbach's help back in Jan 2014.

    Also, can this method be used on a source drive that is 4TB? (I suspect, yes). If so, can the source drive contain recordings and the recordings migrated automatically to the expanded 8TB drive? (I suspect, no)

    And one other question - any recommended 8TB drives? Looks like WD has not released any green 8TB, so Red (NAS) drives are the only option. Although, I suspect, the drive inside their 8TB My Book (model# WDBBGB0080HBK-NESN) is likely a green drive that they don't sell in retail. I'm inclined to think so because I have their 4TB My Book, and running hdparm info on it revealed it was the same model# as their retail 4TB green drive.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2017
  5. Apr 10, 2017 #5 of 106
    RussMuscle

    RussMuscle New Member

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    I don't know bout the Roamio.

    I used the WD Gold 8TB Datacenter Hard Disk - WD8002FRYZ for the Premiere.
     
  6. Apr 10, 2017 #6 of 106
    jmbach

    jmbach der Neuerer

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    This will not work on a Roamio. If you have a Roamio that is new to you, use MFSR to expand it up to 8TB before you have any recordings on it. You will lose any recordings if you run MFSR on that image.

    If a Roamio sees anything over 14 partitions, it reformats the drive. It does no divorce as Premieres do.

    If that 4TB Premiere image is the one we heavily customized, MFSTools 3.2 should work on it. Do the commands as in the procedure outlined in post 1. It will copy all the recordings if you run the command as posted.

    The 8TB WD Red drives (not red pro) work well in the Roamios and should work well in the Premieres.
     
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  7. Apr 10, 2017 #7 of 106
    Cybernut

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    Perfect! Thanks a lot, jmbach!! Yes, my Roamio is new and will have no recordings - and I did not realize the MFSR can do it all the way up to 8TB for Roamios. So I realize now you devised this method for Premieres. And yes, it is the same one we heavily customized (and it has survived recordings from my original 1Tb drive to my 3TB upgrade and then to my 4TB upgrade - some of those recordings are still on it :) ). In any event, if I lose the recordings during my upgrade from 4TB to 8TB Premiere, not a biggie...I'll just switch back to using the 4TB drive (since I'll only be reading from the 4TB drive, everything on it should remain intact and work fine if I plunk the 4TB back in).

    This helps me plan out my upgrades. If the 8TB drive cannot be upgraded from my 4TB Premiere, then I will re-use that 8TB drive for my new Roamio that will be arriving any day now. So I will only order one 8TB drive first. If the Premiere upgrade does work (with recordings), then I will order a second 8TB drive for the Roamio upgrade.

    Thanks for the drive recommendation!
     
  8. Apr 10, 2017 #8 of 106
    ggieseke

    ggieseke Well-Known Member

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    On Roamios and Bolts the partition table uses 4K (Roamio) or zero byte (Bolt) placeholder partitions for the partitions that are actually on flash memory, and I assume that the flash memory does the same thing. In any case, you can't add (or remove) any partitions. If you do, it reformats the drive.
     
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  9. Apr 15, 2017 #9 of 106
    Cybernut

    Cybernut Member

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    jmbach - So I have a 4TB Premiere (with recordings) that I am expanding to an 8TB. In step 1 I am not clear which command I should be executing...is it -aiM 4000 or -aiM 2000? I am not sure if those numbers (4000/2000) correspond to 4TB and 2TB source drives, or if they are for something else. A slightly more detailed instruction for this step would be very helpful for figuring out which one I need to run (or if it doesn't matter).
     
  10. Apr 15, 2017 #10 of 106
    jmbach

    jmbach der Neuerer

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    Either command will work. M 4000 limits the total expansion to about 4TB in size on the 8TB drive while m 2000 limits the size of the two media partitions to about 2TB each on the 8TB. The end result is about the same an approximately 4TB image on the 8TB drive.

    To be clear the difference between the two commands is not only the size but a 'M' and 'm' which has different meanings.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2017
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  11. Apr 15, 2017 #11 of 106
    Cybernut

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    Aah, yeah, I somehow missed the small case difference between M & m. And thanks as always for your genuine concern to helping folks out here with such a speedy and expounded response. I am truly grateful for your and ggieseke's contributions to this place.
     
  12. Apr 24, 2017 #12 of 106
    Cybernut

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    Finally, got it done this morning!

    Spent first several days trying to work with the VM image (tried both VirtualBox & VMWare Wkstn), but kept failing at midway during the first step (drive copy) as the drive writes could not keep up with the drive reads. I suspected all along that because I pass USB 3.0 to the VM, I knew there's a performance hit. But I kept trying for several days and it even reached around 26% done a couple times (that's about 10-12 hours) but then gave the eventual write synch error. Finally, I gave up and dusted off my old laptop and used the Live CD (was avoiding the live CD option initially because it would have tied up my main laptop for a couple days).

    Thanks jmbach and RussMuscle for perfecting the steps (building on jmbach's original Premiere upgrade process for 4 and 6TB drives). Smooth upgrade, including my existing recordings.

    Tivo8TB.jpg
     
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  13. Jul 18, 2017 #13 of 106
    dvrBruce

    dvrBruce New Member

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    Hello everyone! I am a new TCF member as you can see. "Long time listener, First time caller" as they say on the radio talk shows.

    I've had Tivo since I bought some Series 2 units in 2005. I upgraded the hard drives in those units with knowledge gained in whole or in part from TCF. But I don't think I got a login then or at least I don't remember it. I still actively use one of the Series 2 units with a digital tuning adapter so I have gotten excellent lifespan from the upgrade drive.

    In 2010 and 2011 I picked up a couple of Premiere XL(TCD748000) units on upgrade offers from Tivo if I recall correctly. The hard drive has died in one of the Premieres. It is a WD10EVVS 1TB. DataLifeGuard recognizes the drive but the quick test just hangs, and it was making some cringe worthy noises, therefore it is trash.

    So I have rediscovered TCF and I would like to take this moment in my long-winded first post to express my sincere thanks to the developers and pioneers who make these upgrades possible for the rest of us. With an extra helping of thanks to jmbach and RussMuscle for this technique.

    I have read 100s of posts on many threads trying to be well informed and not be a noob asking the same old questions. So finally let me get on with the questions.

    1) How many installations are out there (including 6TB as the process is similar)? Does anyone have any cautionary tales to make me rethink an 8TB upgrade?

    2) Are the units holding up to the increased power requirements and heat of the large capacity drives? From various threads the consensus seems like the WD RED 8TB (WD80EFZX) is the drive to get. The power specs are a bit higher that the original WD10EVVS 1TB, but less that the WD Gold RussMuscle used. One thing that is concerning is the peak 12V, 1.79A while the power supply is labeled 12V, 1.16A. However, a spec sheet I found on the original drive gave 12V, 1.67A so maybe nothing to worry about.

    3) Has the partition rearragement caused any issues with performance or OS updates?

    4) What about the 4k alignment issues discussed in the MFSR tread? Does MSFTools 3.2 do anything about alignment? If not has it proved to be much of an issue?

    5) My understanding is I can use the image from my working Premiere XL(TCD748000) to set up a disk for my dead one(same model), but I need to do a Clear and Delete eveything. Do I initiate that or does it do it automatically? Do I still need to do that if I drop the -a on the mfscopy in step 1? Are there any other steps to take because I copied the image from the other device?

    6) What kind of Cable Card issues am I looking at? I have Comcast and an MCard in each Premiere. (Side Note: Has everyone seen the Funny Or Die - Comcast video? Seems spot on to me!)

    Thank you if you read all the way down to here. Sorry for blathering on so long. I am hoping one long post is less annoying than many short ones!
     
  14. Jul 20, 2017 #14 of 106
    jmbach

    jmbach der Neuerer

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    1) I know of at least 3 without issue to date. Problem is that people are more than likely to report issues than successes. Consequently hard t get a count.

    2)Sofar the WD Red drives (not Pro) have been used successfully in multiple different series of TiVos without incidence.

    3) Nothing definite in the performance side and no problems with OS upgrades as of yet.

    4) MFSTools does no 4k alignment. In theory 4k alignment should improve performance and longevity. Unfortunately these outcomes are difficult to measure to give them meaning.

    5) Yes you have to do a clear and delete everything if you use your working TiVo image to fix the broken TiVo. You can either let it boot and go through the menu start one or you can wait until the kickstart portal opens while it is booting up and hit the pause key followed by 76543210. I would use the command mfscopy -i /dev/sdX /dev/sdY where sdX is your source and sdY is your target drive.

    6) Don't know as I have Charter and an M-card. I do know that M-cards require the data ID and host ID to be paired. Comcast is supposed to have an online pairing portal that you may be able to re-pair the cableCARD.
     
  15. Jul 21, 2017 #15 of 106
    dvrBruce

    dvrBruce New Member

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    Thanks for the response.

    I have decided to take the plunge. I will add my experiences to the thread for others to consider.

    I am actually going to upgrade both of the Premieres. I ordered a 4TB and 8TB WD Red from NewEgg. They don't have to charge me taxes and I got a price match to Amazon on the 4TB ($121.35) and an upgrade to fast shipping for free. I like NewEgg!

    After reading so many posts I am having a little trouble remembering some details. I remember some recommendations for full read, write, read testing of drives. Did that just apply to old drives being reused or is it recommended for new drives too?
     
  16. Jul 21, 2017 #16 of 106
    jmbach

    jmbach der Neuerer

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    Recommended for all drives going into TiVos. It is not perfect but it is a way to qwell out the more immediate lemons.
     
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  17. Jul 21, 2017 #17 of 106
    ggieseke

    ggieseke Well-Known Member

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    I test the heck out of EVERY drive (new, used, whatever) before putting it in a TiVo. Without RAID or even an easy way to back up all of your recordings, you need to trust it.
     
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  18. Jul 21, 2017 #18 of 106
    ClearToLand

    ClearToLand Old !*#$% Tinkerer!

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    @dvrBruce ,

    GOOGLE "Hiren's Boot CD", burn it to a CD (or if you know how, load it onto a flash drive; GOOGLE: "Yumi") and run Western Digital Data Lifeguard Diagnostics. [IIRC, you also could d/l a version from WDC and run it from within Windows, but I have a spare PC dedicated to these tasks and thus only the 'tested' HDD is spinning. You don't want to accidentally 'Write Zeros' to your Boot Drive. :oops: THAT would ruin your day.]

    Recommended for *ALL* HDDs for *ALL* applications, TiVo and PC. I run 'Extended' (Read all sectors), 'Write Zeros' (Write all sectors), 'Extended' (Read all sectors) on every (WDC) HDD I buy (There are other utilities for testing non-WDC HDDs). 3TB Reds take ~5.5 hours, 4TB Reds ~7 hours for EACH operation - i.e. total ~21 hours for a 4TB. So, not counting the periods when the test finishes and you're not there to start the next one, it usually takes me two days per HDD.

    I also run MemTest86+ (for a week!) on new RAM, first each stick individually, then all of them together. When I put a TiVo (or PC) into service, I don't want any surprises (that I can avoid at least).

    kmttg and pyTiVo Desktop are easy ways to back up your non-premium channel recordings (but you already knew that ;) ). Currently, I transfer shows to a logical partition on my main (aka ONLY right now) PC and then periodically I move them to an External USB HDD. RAID (and a dedicated 'Media' PC) is next on my ToDo List, but I won't be running it (RAID) 24x7. Just periodically to backup the External USB HDD(s). The majority of my saved shows right now are just 'overflow' from my 500GB Roamio Basic that I haven't had the time to watch yet because I've been spending the majority of my time setting up several PCs, new and old, desktop and laptop, with Win7 HP and Pro.
     
  19. Sep 29, 2017 #19 of 106
    ms602

    ms602 New Member

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    Will this process work for drives larger than 8TB? 10TB is widely available now (although expensive), and 12TB is in limited supply from some vendors. Not that I need that much space, just wondering what's feasible right now. I notice that Weaknees sells a 10TB replacement drive for the Premiere, so it has to be feasible somehow, but they don't answer questions about how to prep a drive for use, of course.
     
  20. Sep 29, 2017 #20 of 106
    jmbach

    jmbach der Neuerer

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    A similar process could be derived to get up to 10TB but no further as a community method for circumventing the 2TB MFS partition limit has not been found yet. If Weaknees has found a way, then the community will eventually and then any drive could be used without limitation.
    However, what we will find is that the larger the drive gets, we will start introducing inefficiencies.
    With this method to produce an 8TB image, an inefficiency was introduced because the MFS App partitions are not all located next to each other in the center of the drive. To produce a 10TB that will be even worse. Will we notice the inefficiencies, probably not. No one has complained about this inefficiency that was introduced back when TiVos were first expanded.
    Now if Weaknees found a way that circumvented the 2TB limit, then that inefficiency goes away because you can keep the original layout of the MFS partitions which keeps the App partitions together and in the center of the drive. However after a certain size, a new inefficiency is introduced as larger drives tend to have larger cluster sizes which wastes space when the whole cluster is not used for recordings.

    Sent from my SM-G950U1 using Tapatalk
     
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