Canceling a Tivo Subscription

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by Monsuco, Sep 11, 2011.

  1. Monsuco

    Monsuco New Member

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    Sep 11, 2011
    I have an old series 2 Tivo unit. I cannot afford to keep a monthly subscription on it. If I cancel the subscription and just disconnect it from the network and phone, I know the guide service will die, video on demand will crap out, but will my season passes keep working (I know I can't create new ones, I mean like will existing ones stop)? Also, will it stop letting me manually record "VCR style"? I know I'll get some nag screens but I'm not worried about those.

    My state (Colorado) unfortunately still observes DST and I know Tivo clocks are prone to issues. I know you can pull up a Linux shell using something like telnet on Tivos. Can I use that to set the clock when the need arises?

    If Tivo won't let me do these sorts of things, I noticed an old ReplayTV box at a thrift store. Would it let me do this kind of thing?
     
  2. Chris Gerhard

    Chris Gerhard Well-Known Member

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    What model TiVo do you have and what model ReplayTV was at the thrift store? Your season passes will not work with your existing TiVo and unless you have a model with basic service, no recording other than the live buffer will be possible. As far as the ReplayTV, it might have lifetime service and with a model number it will be easy to tell whether or not it was sold with an option for monthly service or came with lifetime service. The Oldest ReplayTV models will have lifetime service but will require a phone line and a local number. I am not sure about VoIP or modification for internet connection with ReplayTV.
     
  3. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    Officially, a Series 2 (except the Toshiba and Pioneer models), will only play existing recordings or buffer Live TV without sub. That is not even that official really.

    Unofficially, if the service connection is disconnected before service is canceled, a Series 2 TiVo can end up in a state where it can manually record from Live TV, or manual record settings. Season passes will no longer be accessable, nor work (they need guide data; part of the subscription). If it connects to an an Internet connection, it can call home and get its real non-subbed status.

    There is no native Telnet or serial bash on any TiVo model; the TiVo OS needs hacked to enable them. A 5xx or higher model TiVo needs a PROM mod to do OS hacks.
     
  4. Monsuco

    Monsuco New Member

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    Sep 11, 2011
    So how would I fix the clock. I suppose if need be I could look up the time my favorite shows come on. It's still possible to set it to do things like automatically record show x on channel y at z time every Thursday right? Is it possible to get it to label those shows with a specific name or will it always be something like Ch.12 12:30p 9/11/2011?

    And how would I set the clock? I have experience with Linux, but not with Tivo hacking.

    This is a Series 2 Tivo. The Model No. is TCD649080.
     
  5. replaytv

    replaytv gun talk ignore list

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    As soon as a unsubbed Tivo connects to the internet or phone line all recording (except the half hour window) will be shut off. You can look at old shows though that have been recorded in the past. There is no way that I know of to make a unsubbed Tivo made to be able to record again after it is 'turned off by Tivo' other than with a subscription.

    Replay without a sub can't be used for anything(no manual recording, time sliping,) at least that was how is was last May. Things have might have changed after that because of the whole 'end of program info fiasco' that happened right around then, that was canceled later.
    Replays don't support antenna TV directly, but you can make them work. I have a bunch of Replays and never use them because I like Tivos much better. But some of the Replays do have auto commercial skip though.
     
  6. replaytv

    replaytv gun talk ignore list

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    I would never bother with a Tivo without a sub. They aren't that expensive for a Toshiba or Pioneer with basic subscription. And even full sub Tivo is not that much. There are ones on Denver Craigslist right now. U didn't say where in Colorado you are.

    U can't 'label' shows with a Tivo. You can do that with a Polaroid and some other non Tivo boxes. I have a couple, but Tivo is much better.

    There is info on setting the clock on this website manually using the remote control, but I have never been able to make that work.

    I have found Replays very difficult to use. But that may be because I have never used one more than just setting them up to see if they work. It took a lot to get them to connect over a regular phone line. I had to go into the manual settings to bring the speed down (something I have only had to do once with a Tivo) and you have to clear out the program info before loading the new info. They really are a DVR straight from Hell in my opinion. But who knows, maybe I will hook one up and record all my music videos so I don't have to mess with the commercials.

    Which speaking of editing, the Polaroid that I have allows editing shows to your hearts content. It isn't easy, and you can then put them on a DVD exactly the way you like. Something that I would like on my Pioneer DVR/DVD tivo to have. I have a Philips DVR/DVD recorder but haven't experimented with it that much. It has a digital tuner built into also. Something none of the other DVRs that have has.
     
  7. Monsuco

    Monsuco New Member

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    Sep 11, 2011
    Well, suppose I subscribe, let it see that it has a sub, disconnect if from the Internet, and never let it see that it doesn't have a sub. Will I be able to use it sorta like a VCR. I want to set it to automatically record certain shows at certain times every day. That is all I need. Can I do that with this old thing?

    Also, how will I set the clock?
     
  8. jfh3

    jfh3 Active Member

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    Even if you "trick" the Tivo by disconnecting it from the network before you cancel the subscription, the internal 30 day timer will still run, so at some point the Tivo will revert to doorstop mode.

    There is no way (on an unhacked Tivo) to set the clock. The clock is set from the Tivo servers during the network connection process.
     
  9. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    You can probably find an old S2 with lifetime for about $100 if you search enough Craigslists often enough. Get on the same model as the one you're about to unsub and keep the unsubbed one to cannibalize parts from for the lifetimed one.
     
  10. scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    The 30 day clock seems to have been eliminated quite some time ago - as in many years ago.
    In January of 2007, I canceled a sub on a 540 unit after disconnecting it from the network. Now I forget the exact number of months later, it was between 6 and 12, but it was still able to record by time and channel. Quite a few other people have also reported that they were able to record many months and even years after canceling their S2 subscription.
    Although this is the case, I wouldn't assume that everyone would have the same experience and I would recommend that people not expect to be able to record by time and channel after canceling the subscription. This is an 'at your own risk' situation.

    About setting the clock, there is an 'at your own risk' method of setting the clock. It's done by connecting the Tivo to a network (or phone line) and forcing a connection. The first thing it does after establishing a connection is set the clock and then it checks the subscription status. The trick is to disconnect from the network (phone line) after the clock set, but before the subscription status is established. I brought this up as a theory I had once before and somebody tried it and reported success. I have not tried it.
     
  11. replaytv

    replaytv gun talk ignore list

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    Subscriptions are for one year minimum, so why would you subscribe and then disconnect it from the internet? You still would have to pay for the one year whether it is connected or not. Just buy a Tivo with lifetime, or buy a used Tivo at the thrift storethat has an open account and don't connect it. You'll have to put up

    But seriously. Lifetime basic Toshiba sell for very little on ebay. Get one of those and then you get the program guide and time and software updates. I don't have any of those that work right now, but the last one I sold here in Denver I sold for $55. That is so cheap to get a Tivo with a DVR/DVD recorder!!
    If you don't want to do that, buy a Polaroid, or Toshiba DVR/DVD that doesn't have the Tivo software and at least you will have a lot more features that Tivo has never had. I have some of those and they sit in a corner cuz I love Tivo. You can even get a Philips that doesn't have Tivo software but will record DVD and DVR with a digital tuner.


     
  12. scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    How about because you can cancel a subscription within the first 30 days w/o having to commit to a year.
     
  13. replaytv

    replaytv gun talk ignore list

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    There have been reports here and other forums that people have done exactly that, but Tivo just keeps on charging the credit card, and when they finally stop, they won't refund the amount already paid.
    It didn't happen to me, I have 10 Tivos with lifetime.
     
  14. replaytv

    replaytv gun talk ignore list

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    I found this on this site. I couldn't get it to work, but didn't try that hard.

    "You can actually set the clock manually, even on an unhacked tivo using backdoor codes:
    Quote:
    C-C-E-E stands for "Clear Clear Enter Enter". The following codes must be entered in the "System Information" screen.

    C-C-E-E 2 - Turns on or off "Special Mode: DEBUG" (Note: you have to leave the "System Information" screen and re-enter it to see this flag turned on.) Starts sending debugging output to the /var/log/tvdebuglog file. This setting will STAY ON after a reboot. Not advised to leave this on for long periods of time.

    E-E stands for "Enter Enter". The following codes must be entered in the "Search by Title"screen. These codes are generally used to set values on the Tivo. You enter the code, and the prompt will appear, along with the red recording light coming on. You then enter the value. You then enter the code again to set the value in, and the recording light will go off. It doesn't actually stop recording if you happen to be recording something, however. Entering invalid values (non-numeric) will cause your Tivo to reboot, so be careful.

    E-E-Tivo - If in Debug mode (see C-C-E-E 2 above), lets you set the TiVo's clock. The format of the time entry you use is [YYYYMMDDhhmm]
    (from http://archive2.tivocommunity.com/ti...threadid=26530)


    I've tried the above, and can confirm it works fine on our UK tivos

    So full procedure is:

    Turn on backdoors by entering " B D 2 5" in the "search by title" screen
    Go into debug mode by pressing Clear-Clear-Enter-Enter-2 on the system information screen.
    Go back into the "search by title" screen, and press Enter-Enter-Tivo
    Type the date/time e.g. now is 200804301029
    Press Enter-Enter-Tivo to store that date
    Turn off debug mode by pressing Clear-Clear-Enter-Enter-2 on the system information screen.

    Note that you may have to put in a time one hour behind as I did above, as we are in british summer time.
     
  15. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    That's from an old post and you can tell from the backdoor code that it's for S1s running version 2.5 of the software. Any US TiVo that's connected to the mothership in at least the last 5 years or longer has been upped to the 3.0 version, and the new versions giveth and the new versions taketh away, and neither is officially documented, so it may have been removed or disabled.
     
  16. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    You don't fix the clock. You live with the drift.

    You might be able to set the clock over Telnet or Bash, if you hack the TiVo OS (which on your model TiVo requires a PROM mod), or through your router block the TiVo service uodate connection, but allow trhe NTP connection to pass.

    What I would do is evaluate my DVR needs, and see what alternatives there are, or get a Product Lifetime TiVo (which I already have, FWIW).
     
  17. scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    There are millions of unreported Tivo subscription cancellations that resulted in a tivo's subscription being canceled and an immediate end to the associated credit card being charged. I have had personal experience with this on multiple occasions.
     
  18. jcsites

    jcsites New Member

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    Sep 15, 2011
    The credit card company should issue a refund once a charge back is requested. Most of these companies are getting stricter and merchants have to follow.
     
  19. Jonathan_S

    Jonathan_S Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, the "normal" problem with canceling TiVo is getting offered 6 months or a year free and not understanding (possibly because of poor explanation), or remembering, that that was offered instead of canceling.

    Once the free period is up TiVo starts billing you again. (Unless you call and really cancel before the end of the free period)
     

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