Best way for backing up shows to computer

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by benraymond, Jul 19, 2011.

  1. benraymond

    benraymond New Member

    Mar 30, 2008


    So, have a DVR expander and I now plan to go with a single 2 TB hard drive (DVRDude). I understand that going 2 drives to one is difficult if not undoable and have given up on this.

    I do want to save a couple programs if possible, maybe 10% of my drive.

    I have both a Mac and a Windows 7 PC with enough storage to handle backups.

    Question - what program and computer would be easiest to grab the shows I want to transfer them to computer? Which to transfer back, the same? What kind of hours are we talking about? (everything is wired ethernet). I'm assuming that getting the programs off of the HDs is impossible because they are split up over two drives.

  2. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

    May 1, 2006
    Dallas, TX
    You can use either computer, but IMO the Windows 7 PC will be more versatile.

    The free version of TiVo Desktop is probably the way to go to get you started.

    NOTE: You must go to your account at and under DVR Preferences, enable video downloads.

    Transfer speed varies. For a Series 3 platform Tivo, an HD video transfer takes longer than realtime (1 hour show could take up to 1.5 hours to transfer), possibly longer depending on your network activity. The Premieres are faster.

    ETA: You will not be able to transfer any shows that are marked copy protected.
  3. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    As long as the programs split over 2 drives are not copy protected, you should be able to transfer them with TiVo Desktop to computer.

    Can't tell you anything about doing it with a Mac, but with a PC you should have an NT partition to put them on, 'cause a FAT32 can't handle files larger than 4GB, which means a 2 hour movie recorded Best Quality SD will suddenly be a 1:55 movie and you won't know how it ended.

    TiVo Desktop defaults to putting its "My TiVo Recordings" folder on the "C:" drive, but you can change that.

    Even though it takes longer, you might be better off choosing to let Desktop use the slower method of transferring, especially if you have any older Tivos in the house.
  4. Teeps

    Teeps Well-Known Member

    Aug 16, 2001
    I use this:

    Once you get it setup, it's very easy transfer the files.

    The biggest problem is the copy protection. Time Warner (Torrance) has just about every program set to protect, except what can be had OTA.
  5. jrtroo

    jrtroo Chill- its just TV

    Feb 4, 2008


    If this is a one time event- I would use tivo desktop.

    If you are starting to think that you may want to either archive shows more often or want to serve content from your pc to your tivo (dvds for example) I would look to use the more advanced tools such as pytivo or kmttg.
  6. rayik

    rayik New Member

    Feb 4, 2006
    If you are going to transfer shows reguarly, I would not recommend Tivo desktop. On our windows pc, it had to install quicktime plus run services to work.

    I'd recommend kmttg. It installs easily. You can schedule shows to automatically be transferred from the tivo to the pc. If you want, you can set those shows to automatically be unencrypted as well as have the commercials cut out.
  7. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    kmttg as mentioned, or iTivo. I used to use the latter, but switched to the former even though it has a wacky Java interface.
  8. Fofer

    Fofer Bo55man69

    Oct 29, 2000
    Be aware that both of these are currently broken in OS X 10.7 (Lion) that was released today.

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