Bolt HD Failed. In a nutshell:

Discussion in 'TiVo Bolt DVR/Streamer' started by douglaskeene, Oct 6, 2019.

  1. douglaskeene

    douglaskeene New Member

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    Feb 8, 2008

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    Howdy
    I have a Bolt 4 tuner that was upgraded to 3TB HDD that's giving me the four flashing lights. So I assume that it's the Hard Drive failure. Lots of good information here on replacing it, which I am willing to do. I will also call TIVO to see what their options are. If I replace the HDD will i need to get an ISO image of a working HDD with the Tivo operating system? or does the firmware find a way to format it? I was able to replace a Series III tivo HDD because a nice person on this forum allowed a download of the tivo disk image. I was considering just getting an Edge, but I predict my lifetime service won't transfer...Thoughts?
    Thanks all
    Doug
     
  2. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    Yep, Lifetime won't transfer absent a special TiVo promotion or TiVo doing it as a concession (e.g. for a malfunctioning box that TiVo replaces).

    Nicely, with a replacement drive of 3TB or less, the box does whatever is needed for formatting, installing what is needed, etc.--just plop the new drive in. :up:

    I would put the original hard drive back in the box, to see if it is a box issue or a drive issue with the 3TB replacement drive. If it's the latter, the solution would be to get a new drive or to use the original drive; if it's the former, I would call TiVo and see what might be possible, angling for a sweetheart deal in which they would transfer Lifetime without charge.

    Personally, I would not contact TiVo about the 3TB drive that you had installed, as TiVo is not responsible for that drive; and I would not contact TiVo without re-installing the original drive, as I would not want to highlight the replacement drive and have TiVo possibly deny help/service/warranty or other coverage/a deal/etc.
     
  3. douglaskeene

    douglaskeene New Member

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    Feb 8, 2008

    Thanks, Mikeguy, this is very helpful. I purchased the unit already upgraded with the hard drive, so I don't have the original. I will try getting a new 3TB replacement drive, and I have read about SMR/PMR, so in my mind, if drives fail, it would be helpful to find a method of backing up all the recordings in case something fails. if it's as easy as replacing a drive and restoring it from something external, that would be great. Now I need to find out how to open up that unit.
     
  4. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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  5. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    I did find the following sources just now (one U.S.; one international (UK/Germany), much less expensive than the U.S. source) for what earlier was a preferred drive, the Toshiba MQ03ABB300 (3TB):

    MQ03ABB300 Toshiba Hard Drive

    Toshiba - MQ03ABB300 - Festplatte - 3TB - intern - 6,4 cm (2.5") - SATA 6Gb/s - 5400 U/min - Puffer: 16MB (MQ03ABB300) - Toshiba Hardware/Electronic Grooves Inc..
     
  6. douglaskeene

    douglaskeene New Member

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    Thanks, Mikeguy. I hate to ask an obvious question, but why not put in an SSD as 3TB? I want to get this proper drive, but i also want to do this today and not wait for something in the mail. I wonder if I can find a 2.5" 3TB drive at Microcenter, SSD or Platter based, and even if i have to replace the PMR drives every now and then, wouldn't it make sense to use a cheaper PMR and replace it when necessary (assuming a good backup plan)...... ;)
     
  7. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    There are some posts here on that (the SSD idea).

    I guess that part of it has been, the cost of an SSD dwarfs that of a hard drive: looking at Amazon.com just now, 2TB SSDs are going for north of $200; the Toshiba drive in 2TB form can be found at less than half that (Toshiba MQ03ABB200 Hard Drive SATA-6GBPS 2TB-5.4K RPM; Toshiba MQ03ABB200 New).

    Then, probably because of the price issue, people just haven't been subbing SSDs in much (although some people have--you can do a search here and read about their experiences). And so, less is known about the long-term suitability factor.

    Finally, and beyond my SSD knowledge paygrade, there has been discussion here (on the above) of the memory cell exhaustion issue with SSDs and whether the constant writing of TiVo data is best suited for an SSD.

    For me, when I subbed a 3TB drive into my Bolt, I was most sensitive to the compatibility/success rate factor (although cost was important as well), and so went with the Toshiba drive, which, based on posts here, seemed to have had a certain amount of success (I also stumbled into a good deal). The last thing I wanted to do was to have to repeat the replacement process later as well as lose recordings.

    Another source for you: WeaKnees.com has Bolt hard drive upgrade/replacement kits. TiVo Bolt Plus and Bolt VOX 3TB TiVo Upgrade Kits and Hard Drives They often are more expensive than what you separately can find, but you have the backing and support of WeaKnees. A drive also could be obtained pretty quickly (I see 1-day, 2-day, and 3-day delivery available, at an additional charge--but that also likely is the case with the earlier-mentioned sources as well). Note that if your failed drive is a Western Digital drive that originally came in the Bolt boxes, WeaKnees pays a bounty for the drive when you purchase a replacement--that helps defer part of the replacement cost.*

    * I know that you wrote that you purchased your Bolt box already upgraded--that means that the box didn't come with its 3TB hard drive to the first owner originally, right? Because if the box originally came with that drive, a call to TiVo definitely would be warranted, as it seems to be well aware of the WD 3TB hard drive failure issue and has been known to give sweetheart deals for impacted customers. But again, that's where the box shipped with the 3TB drive originally.
     
    JandS likes this.
  8. SNJpage1

    SNJpage1 Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    Atlantic...
    My Bolt just suffered a hard drive failure today. All 4 lights flashing. I did take out an extended warranty when I bought it so Tivo is sending me a replacement for free. It will be a VOX unit with a 3TB HHD. The one question I forgot to ask them is what software ver it will have. Both my old Bolt and my Mini are the older versions. I had to roll back the Mini when I bought it since I never down loaded the upgrade for the original Bolt.
     
  9. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    It almost certainly will come with TE4, the "newer" UI. But, as you know, you can sidegrade to TE3, absent on the specifically-denominated Bolt OTA model or the new Edge box.
     
    SNJpage1 likes this.

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