All flashing lights, change hard drive? What else can I try?

Discussion in 'TiVo Bolt DVR/Streamer' started by Johnny Danger, Dec 30, 2020.

  1. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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    Hello.

    When I purchased my used Tivo bolt, it had all flashing lights and was told by the seller it was a simple hard drive failure.

    I replaced the hard drive with a normal size 3.5 inch 8TB hard drive vs the laptop hard drive that was there before.

    I followed whatever steps you are suppose to do and it sort of works.

    The problem is that even so often all the lights start flashing again and it requires me to just reset the device for it to start working again.

    Sometimes it has gone as long as a 2 weeks on its own and sometimes its a little as 1 hour.

    Eventually the lights will all start flashing again.

    Does this sound like maybe a bad SATA cable or firmware on the device itself?

    It sort of works but has become very flaky from day 1. Perhaps the ebay seller was trying to sell a lemon of a tivo.

    Please let me know if there are any troubleshooting steps I can take to try to pinpoint the problem?

    Thanks.
     
  2. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    What is the model of the 8TB? And are you going Sata to Sata or Sata to eSata? Are you running TE4 (Hydra) or TE3 (classic) OS?
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2020
  3. V7Goose

    V7Goose OTA ONLY and Loving It!

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    I think you should follow "whatever steps you are suppose to do" for further troubleshooting - they "sort of work".
     
    kpeters59 likes this.
  4. kpeters59

    kpeters59 Well-Known Member

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    I'll guess you're running TE4 and the TiVo crashes on Pre-Roll Ads and then doesn't properly reboot.

    Call TiVo and have Pre-Roll Ads turned off.

    Try a different TiVo Power Supply.

    -KP
     
  5. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    Well they meant the upgrade itself I think, enclosure, wires etc. But many upgrades "recommended" here, some Sata to Sata, some Sata to eSata, different enclosures etc. Without detailed info hard to answer question, heck could easily be the drive itself, if WD 8TB would be CMR but there are SMR Seagate 8TB out there, probably others.
     
  6. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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    What steps do you have for me to follow?
     
  7. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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    How can I tell if I'm using the hail Hydra or classic OS ?

    I swapped out the hard drives about 13 months ago if that helps.

    Its connected directly into the SATA

    The hard drive is a Seagate Barracuda ST8000DM004

    As far as I know, the " archive drives" are the SMD style.
     
  8. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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    I don't recall ever seeing a ad on my TIVO before which may support this theory especially if other have experienced this pre-roll ad crash.

    TIVO will turn these off on request but only via phone call? I tried to contact them but they are closed for the day. Hopefully they will be open tomorrow on New years eve and not all drunk.

    Thanks.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2020
  9. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    Ashland, PA...
    Classic (TE3):
    TE3-TC.JPG
    Hydra (TE4):
    TE4-Home.JPG
     
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  10. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    If by "connected directly into the Sata" you mean the drive is connected to the Sata port on the Bolt motherboard then directly to the Sata data connection on the Seagate drive itself that is good. If it is connected to an Esata port on the external enclosure that is not good. But the Seagate archive drive, I don't know what SMD means but the ST8000DM004 is an SMR drive. Which is definitely NOT good. You need a CMR drive, not SMR. Some SMR kinda work (some don't work at all), the ones that do work could wear out very quickly. Sounds like that might be what is happening with yours (13 months?.) The upgrade threads here usually specify a CMR drive (WD purples are good, reds ok for 8TB.) I'm going to guess your problems are because of the Seagate, either because it's SMR period or it is wearing out/has errors.

    As for OS, TE3 or TE4, maybe take a picture of the menu screen for the Tivo on your TV. If you use voice it's definitely TE4 though. There are more problems with TE4 upgrades than TE3. However my guess is it's your SMR Seagate that is causing the problems.
     
  11. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    Ah, that should help the OP answer my question about OS :) Looks like the problem is the SMR Seagate drive regardless though.
     
  12. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    2.0TB/platter Section (all drives under here use platters that can hold 2.0TB of data apiece.)

    BarraCuda (5000RPM, 256MB cache, SATA-600 interface, Advanced Format, """""""Shingled Magnetic Recording""""""")

    ST2000DM005 2TB (1/2)
    ST3000DM007 3TB (2/3)
    ST4000DM004 4TB (2/4)
    ST5000DM003 5TB (3/5)
    ST6000DM003 6TB (3/6)
    ********ST8000DM004 8TB (4/8)**********
     
  13. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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  14. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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    On the amazon question/answers, someone wrote ' Seagate does make 8Tb SMR disks (ST8000AS0003)" this one however is the ST8000DM004 not the ST8000DM003.

    How do you know the ST8000DM004 is an SMR drive? It said barracuda on it not archive. Where do you see that its an SMR drive? Normally from my understanding
    I do see someone in the UK on Amazon negative review claiming this is an unlabeled SMR drive. Is that what you are referring to? Generally speaking the archive = SMR drive not barracuda. Would Seagate sell an SMR drive and refuse to publish those specs to cover it up?



    * UPDATE: Its a conspiracy. Seagate took the SMR archive drives and labeled them as a Barracuda drive to fool people and did not publish the specs. This should be criminal. I hope there is a good class action lawyer who understands exactly what seagate did here with the inferior SMR archive drives being labeled as a Barracuda drive and hiding the specs. I even downloaded the large PDF manual on the drive and it does not say SMR on it anywhere.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2020
  15. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    I still don't know what you mean by SMD. It's an SMR drive. See my post #12. You can check link I posted below. Do not trust comments on Amazon. What you most likely need to do is get an 8TB Purple. Or 8TB Red Plus, I prefer the Purple. If starting fresh should be able to just pop in and the Bolt will format (if you are running TE4/Hydra, with TE3 you'd have to run MFSR on it, read about MFSR). If you want to try to save recordings you could try CLONING (not copying) the Seagate to the Purple. May work if not too many errors. Bottom line, the ST8000DM004 is SMR and is not recommended for Tivos. Need a CMR drive.

    The HDD Platter Capacity Database
     
  16. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    Current model Seagate Barracudas are SMR. You'd need a Barracuda PRO to get CMR.
     
  17. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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    My mistake. SMD=SMR
    My mistake:

    I said SMD but I mean SMR. I was referring to shingled magnetic disk but its shingled magnetic recording.

    SMR have always been the archive drive because that is what they were design to do. Lets say there was some TV series you got from TIVO with TIVO desktop or something. Something you may want to revisit one day but not actively looking at. You may want to put that in an Archive(SMR) drive which for 99.999% of the time will not be viewed or changed once written.

    Hence the name archive drive to archive the information but not used as a traditional hard drive.

    The process that this drives writes information involves a very intensive process including basically deleting previous information, committing it to a temporary memory and rewriting it every time it has to write something new. Making it horrible if you are compactly writing new things to it.

    If I understand it correctly, its not the reading that stresses the drive, its the writing. So having this drive inside a TIVO is the absolutely worst possible thing you can do.

    However I would like everyone to know that its not right what Seagate has done here. They have taken an archive drive which is design for archiving things and labeled it a Barracuda drive design for performance.

    Then they covered up this information by omitting this SMR information from the box, spec sheet and even the manual.

    AFTER they were called out for it on various websites, articles, forums, etc... They published a new correction saying like " Oh yeah, those drives you thought were Barracuda are actually basically archive SMR drives, please don't sue us"

    This is a very sad day and a disgrace for Seagate in my humble opinion.
     
  18. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Member

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    I am going to have to hunt down a 8TB hard drive which is not SMR.

    By the way, these hard drive manufacturers almost seem like they are going out of their way to hide if a Hard drive is SMR.

    Its almost like they are ashamed of this and trying their best to hide this information.

    Kind of like a restaurant owner hiring ex-felons to work in the kitchen.

    They don't want their customers to realize the lemonade they are drinking was made by a convicted criminal.
     
  19. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    They were hiding it. WD slipped SMR into the Red line without telling anyone (2-6TB Reds) Cost a lot of people a lot of time and a lot of money. There are lawsuits. Now companies have to be more straight forward about what is CMR and what is SMR. SMR is cheaper to make. And is ok for some applications. Mostly NOT for Tivos, or other 24/7 applications doing a lot of writing. Like I said a purple or red plus for you (not cheap but could/should last 5 years or more.) Or more economical shuck from an 8TB Easystore. Or buy one that has been shucked. However no warranty on shucked, once taken out of enclosure warranty is void. Yeah, the constant writing is probably what causes the problems in a Tivo. For the SMR drives that "kinda" work, some don't work at all. Good luck ;)
     
  20. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    Kind of, but almost all desktop drives are SMR now too. Seagate used to have archive, desktop and Barracuda for non specialty firmware type of drive. The Barracuda was the "Premium" non specialty drive. And was CMR. Heck some of the Seagate desktops were CMR also, I'm still using some of those in some of my Tivos. But they switched desktop to SMR, then within last couple years I think, Barracuda too (like I said Barracuda Pro is still CMR). For a "layman", someone who just wants to buy a certain size hard drive, not good, the majority don't know what CMR and SMR mean. My first Bolt I bought a few drives to upgrade. They turned out to be SMR. I started to learn. As you have now...........................
     

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