Back up your tivo!

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by justen_m, Nov 28, 2008.

  1. BeanMeScot

    BeanMeScot Sci-Fi Junkie

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    I can't begin to tell you the number of hard drives I have had replaced in various Tivos. I'd say it's in the double digits. :eek:
     
  2. justen_m

    justen_m Cheesehead TCF Club

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    At least I'm not the only one! :)
    Once my replacement Tivo gets here (ugh, 2 more days), I am going to completely ignore my own advice and not back anything up.
     
  3. berfy

    berfy New Member

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    Yikes! I've had 6 Tivo's over the past several years going all the way back to a Series 1 and not a one of them ever had a hard drive failure.

    Have you had that little black cloud following you around your whole life? ;)
     
  4. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance TCF Club

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    I just had my first hard drive failure ever a couple of weeks ago. I ended up having to start over from scratch with a new drive. Lost it all. You can bet I have a back up of my Season Passes on a CD now.

    The flip side of this is that I found out it's extremely easy to remove and upgrade the drives in a TiVo box so I'm much less worried about them failing now. The upgrade was so easy and the new drive worked so much better than the stock unit that I decided to put a 1 TB drive in my other TiVo as well. Instead of waiting forever to transfer 500 gigs of shows with the drives removed, I decided to use MRV and transfer them "TiVo to TiVo" over night. Now both TiVos have 1 TB drives. The cost was very reasonable and with WINMFS it was easy. :)
     
  5. justen_m

    justen_m Cheesehead TCF Club

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    I've had six TiVos over nine years
    Yikes! I've had 6 Tivo's over the past several years

    LOL. You guys are so funny. Math isn't your strong suit, eh?
     
  6. IndyJones1023

    IndyJones1023 Auteur

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    :confused:
     
  7. BeanMeScot

    BeanMeScot Sci-Fi Junkie

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    This is what others who have Tivos that live forever say to me. I lost my first SAT-T60 about 3 months out of warranty and it has been downhill from there. I finally sold it after about the 3rd drive thinking maybe it was that machine. But nope. I have a Series 2 DirectTivo upstairs right now that needs a new drive. :( I know I have put at least one other in it. I sold another one that I know I put drives in. This is in 2 different houses, too. I thought it might have been the power at the old house. I currently hold my breath everytime my Tivo HD reboots.
     
  8. dylanemcgregor

    dylanemcgregor Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    Do you have them on a UPS? I personally don't, and only had the drive in my S1 fail after about 5 years, and the 2nd drive is still going strong after another 5, and I have about 4 years now on the S2..

    But, I know that people on the forum who know a lot more about these things than I do always seem to recommend that a TiVo be on a UPS. I've been lucky, so I haven't bothered, but if I had the problems that you have had I would definitely be taking their advice.
     
  9. BeanMeScot

    BeanMeScot Sci-Fi Junkie

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    When I first got the Tivo, I didn't have it on a UPS. When I kept loosing them, I put them on a UPS. I still lose them.
     
  10. brettatk

    brettatk Thread Killer

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    I've never had a hard drive fail in any of my three Tivos. Of course I've never left the factory drives in there more than 30 minutes after opening the boxes. Perhaps it's more a problem when the factory drive is never replaced.

    I wish there was an easy way to backup a tivo. It would take days to back it up to a computer in which during that time many new things will have been recorded. With the ability to download practically any TV show you want these days online, I'm not really worried anymore about having my hard drive fail.
     
  11. JSearfoss

    JSearfoss Member

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    Was just thinking that with all that are having problems with the last upgrade and Netflix killing there Tivo that it would be nice if there was a built in backup and restore option to back up everything EXCEPT the movies to a external hard drive or thumb drive. Would make it much easier to replace a hard drive if needed and you would keep all you settings.
     
  12. newskilz

    newskilz New Member

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    To continue from an earlier poster about UPS, maybe the problem is power fluxuation (spelling?) that a lot of lower level UPS don't handle well or at all. On the other hand I don't have mine on a UPS, but do have them on protected power strips from spikes (the kind with a protected equipment warranty).... I'd love to upgrade to a really good UPS, especially after this last week when the power was out for 6 hours during prime time no less!

    At any rate, I've been lucky so far, and have only had my internal modem on the S1 give out a while back... then again my hard drive was replaced pretty soon after purchase as well, so there might be something there for whatever reason.

    Another thought, in this day and age, along with the large amounts of data for storing HD shows, it would be really nice if we could start using RAID on our TiVo's so any one drive loss is nothing to worry about. Just replace the hard drive and keep on going.
     
  13. TishTash

    TishTash Active Member

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    Weaknees is offering a backup solution on their website. I think it involves continuously updating a mirror image of the main drive so that if it fails, you can use the mirror image and eventually replace the defective drive, which then becomes the backup. (I think.)
     
  14. newskilz

    newskilz New Member

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    Cool, it looks like they have basically made a two drive low level raid external box, and considering you are buying two drives, etc. starting at $349 isn't too bad I suppose. I wonder if you could buy pretty much any external setup with back up capability already there? Hmmm.... so I wonder if there is a performance hit for all of your storage being external with no internal drive?

    Of course this also gets me thinking, is there something that would limit the number of drives in the external storage? Because, if not, then you could use three smaller drives or more, get more usable storage and the cost of the drives would be less-in theory at least, I haven't actually priced this out; just thinking out loud.
     
  15. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Best way to protect your TiVo from failure is to get a UPS. Those little brow outs and power flickers wreak havoc on hard drives. Protecting your system with a UPS will decrease your chances of a hard drive failure significantly.

    Dan
     
  16. retired_guy

    retired_guy New Member

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    I went for about four years without any kind of hard drive failures on four TiVos and then lost two Series2s within a few weeks of each other. But it didn't appear to me that the drives had actually failed but rather that they had been corrupted by something unusual the software had done. One wasn't worth saving since it didn't have lifetime so I'm using that one as a TV riser. But the other had 250GB and lifetime so it had value. After checking the drive I found no failures; used Instant Cake to restore the software and it's been working fine ever since.

    One of my HD units had problems with sometimes failing hard reboots after I installed a 1TB Samsung drive. I put that one on a CyberPower UPS and found that my wall voltage was around 123 Volts; the UPS clipped that back to 120V and I haven't had any problems since. I suspect that many people do have power and or voltage variances which cause problems over time. But others are just unlucky.

    My plan is to continue to use WinMFS on any new TiVo I get and generate a backup on my PC along with having the original shipped drive as a backup for upgraded systems (they're all four upgraded so far). It's really easy to do although somewhat frightening the first time one attempts it. You can download instructions from Weaknees as to how to remove/reinstall a drive on almost any TiVo model.
     
  17. teknoid

    teknoid Master of nothing

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    (My plan is to continue to use WinMFS on any new TiVo I get and generate a backup on my PC along with having the original shipped drive as a backup for upgraded systems (they're all four upgraded so far). It's really easy to do although somewhat frightening the first time one attempts it. You can download instructions from Weaknees as to how to remove/reinstall a drive on almost any TiVo model.)

    I think this what I did when upgrading my HDD a few years ago on my Series 2.
    Can this process still be used with a TiVo HD model? I'm thinking about upgrading to a TiVo HD, upgrade to a 1 TB HDD and then getting a lifetime sub on it. But before I do that, I want to be sure I can backup the drive to a computer. I'd hate to lose a lifetime subscription.
     
  18. retired_guy

    retired_guy New Member

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  19. donnoh

    donnoh Member

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    The best way to back up a TiVo is to get it working (cable cards installed and functional) take out the original drive, use WinMFS and back it up to a new drive, install the new drive in your TiVo and put the original drive in a safe place.
    Forever protected and you have a new big drive running in your TiVo!
     
  20. JeffKusnitz

    JeffKusnitz Member

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    When I first got my Tivo, I tried to do just that - back up a couple of SP shows to my PC using Tivo Desktop Plus. It didn't work so well. Every version of Tivo Desktop I used (2.6.0, .1, and .2) had a memory leak that caused it to suck up all of my PCs memory in only day or so of running. If I turned off the automatic downloading of season passes, the leak went away.

    Jeff
     

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