How-To Upgrade your TiVo

Discussion in 'TiVo Upgrade Center' started by hinsdale, Dec 21, 2001.

  1. Dec 21, 2001 #1 of 1590

    hinsdale New Member

    Apr 30, 2001


    I Want a Large TiVo with Lots of Recording Time
    Here is a recording capacity upgrade How-To for relative newbies that incorporates the newest utilites for hopefully a quick and painless TiVo upgrade experience (includes Boot Cd and floppy instructions).

    Following the above guide you should wind up with a large TiVo (60 - 330 hrs) in around an hour or so. The instructions function for all U.S. and U.K. makes/models of standalone TiVo's and DirecTV/TiVo combo units (referred to as DirecTiVo's for this document). Remember, however, that you are hacking your TiVo and there are no guarantees of the utilities or instruction provided.

    Most common upgrade questions should be covered within the How-To, so read carefully and if still in need of assistance then post requests in the underground forum.
  2. Dec 21, 2001 #2 of 1590

    George42 New Member

    Nov 29, 2001

    Thanks a bunch to you and the many other people who contribute to this fourm. With your instructions, a bracket from 9th Tee, and a low-cost Maxtor 5400 rpm 80G drive from newegg, I (and college student son) easily bumped our 30G Sony SA Tivo to 30G+80G.


  3. Dec 24, 2001 #3 of 1590

    dwight Member

    Dec 24, 2001
    Just wanted to post a quick note thanking you for developing such a comprehensive and complete guide to upgrading a Tivo unit. With no prior Linux experience, I was able to follow your instructions and increase my 30-hr SA Tivo to 145 hours via a 120Gb Maxtor hard drive.

    The upgrade when without a hitch. I did encounter one unusual thing, though. When I attempted to use the version of TivoMad for "merged" 2-drive units, it asked me to insert floppy disk #2. Since I didn't have any floppies, I used the standard TivoMad utility (I had a married unit anyway), and everything went fine from that point forward.

    Thanks again!
  4. Dec 24, 2001 #4 of 1590
    Eric Cottrell

    Eric Cottrell New Member

    Dec 24, 2001
    Boston, Ma Area

    I got my Philips HR-112 over a year ago. I found
    it useful but of limited capacity. I could not
    watch Basic quality but the 8 hour medium quality
    was okay. I have a pretty full schedule and can
    go for a number of days before watching the TiVO.
    I turned off the background recording and only
    have a few season passes. I was also following
    the upgrade threads but put off upgrading because
    of the limitations. When I checked last week
    after a few months, WOW! :p Thanks to everyone for
    their work. I also like the feature of being able
    to upgrade again in the future easily!

    I went to a computer show planning to get a
    100/120 gig drive but ended up getting two Maxtor
    536DX (4W060H4) 60 Gig drives for $105 apiece.
    The drives on offer over 60 Gig were all 7200 RPM
    drives and cost more per gig.

    I found the instructions useful and complete but I
    am not a new computer user. One suggestion is
    when a user has multiple operating systems that
    the C: partition might not be on /dev/hda1. I run
    three OSes and hda1 is Boot Manager on my machine.
    I used the fdisk program to find the right one

    The only problem in burning the CD-R was the
    readme had the wrong filename for the iso file.
    I used linux to burn the CD-R. I backed up my old
    TiVO A drive using MFStools for a just-in-case
    backup and used DD to copy to my new A drive.
    I used a SCSI CD-Rom drive without any problems
    and it allowed me to put the TiVO B drive on

    I was suprised to start the DD copy and have it
    complete by the time I finished supper. Having a
    fast machine (1 GHZ P3) really helps. All tests
    went okay. The Maxtor drives are quiet with some
    low volume clicking sounds. A review said they do
    not generate excessive heat.

    Thanks also for the suggestion to use tiewraps for
    the B drive. I am planning to get a bracket soon.
    I now have 145 hours of (unwatchable) Basic and 85
    hours of (watchable) Medium. I bumped up my
    preference to the 64 hour high quality setting and
    will be doing more reprograming to take advantage
    of the space.:D One thing on my wishlist is a way
    to backup the unit without taking out the

    Thanks again and 73,
    Eric Cottrell
  5. Dec 27, 2001 #5 of 1590

    Kash76 Live TV?

    Jul 29, 2001


    Last night I went and picked up a WD 100 gig drive and hadn't really done much reading on upgrading. I printed your 20 page upgrade instructions and 2 1/2 hours later....

    Walla!! I have a 126 hour DSR6k.

    Many thanks to Hinsdale and his thorough instructions!!
  6. Dec 28, 2001 #6 of 1590

    Rik New Member

    Dec 29, 2000
    Thanks much. I upgraded my Philips DirecTivo unit to 126 hours a couple of months ago. Unfortunately ... I just got a severe error last night and the unit has been unable to repair itself. Are there any step by step instructions for fixing this myself (after identifying which hard drive is the culprit)?
  7. Dec 28, 2001 #7 of 1590

    rsawic Guest

    What is the difference between a Quantum Drive and
    a regular harddrive? Also where can I find MFS tools?

  8. Dec 28, 2001 #8 of 1590

    kroddy New Member

    Oct 31, 2001
    Quantum is (was) a manufacturer of hard-drives.

    You will find a link to MFS Tools in the above mentioned how-to
  9. Dec 28, 2001 #9 of 1590

    Steavis Active Member

    Dec 26, 2001
    Camarillo, CA
    A big THANK YOU to Hinsdale and all those who put in time and energy to create the TiVo upgrading tools. Thanks to all you guys (and a great deal on a Maxtor 120GB HD at Comp-U-Plus), my HDR212 now sports a whopping 174 hrs.

    Couldn't have asked for a smoother experience--everything fell into place without a hitch. Contrast that to the 5-day headache I had while trying to upgrade my PC's hard drive and re-install Win98 back in September.

    Anyway, you guys are appreciated. I applaud your genius!

  10. Dec 29, 2001 #10 of 1590

    tharpertx Guest

    Never mind...Site is up.

    I appreciate your help and feedback,

  11. Dec 29, 2001 #11 of 1590

    Rik New Member

    Dec 29, 2000
    Anybody know why my signature ... which appeared correctly under the previous forum ... now shows up as the code I typed in to create it?
  12. Dec 29, 2001 #12 of 1590

    Nihilator Rebate Whore

    Dec 29, 2001
    I just finished upgrading my Sony SVR2000 from 30 hours to 101 hours by adding a 60GB Western Digital drive that I had sitting around. Now I can bump up the recording quality for most all of my shows, and not have to worry about transferring West Wing to tape so quickly. Hinsdale's instructions made it easy...thanks so much!

    Here's a suggestion for future revisions of the How-To doc: As soon as you pull your TiVo's A-drive, get on the web, go to the drive manufacturer's website (Quantum owners, go to Maxtor), and pull down a copy of the jumper spec sheet. My Sony uses a Quantum LS15 drive with a somewhat confusing jumper sticker, and this would have been a little hardship if I didn't have a second computer on the network available for just this task.

    By the way, my brother and I purchased a Hughes DirecTV with TiVo unit for my mother (in the West Virginia wilderness) for Christmas. As soon as the wrinkles are ironed out of the upgrade process for these apparently tricky units, I'll give that one a try.

    Thanks again, Hinsdale, and of course a huge thanks to all of the wicked smart people (Dylan, TiVoMad, Tiger, and Kazymyr) who laid the groundwork.

  13. Dec 30, 2001 #13 of 1590

    cactus46 New Member

    Nov 17, 2001
    Phoenix AZ USA
    And yet another thanks, Hindsdale.

    Using your How-to it was a almost painless process replacing my 30 GB A drive with a 100 GB Western Digital WD1000 7200 RPM drive (the price was right :)).

    My SA HDR31202 seems to be doing fine with the new drive. I don't notice any excessive noice. Basic recording space is reported as 115 hours now.

    It was a bit of a challenge to get the older computer to boot with the 100 GB drive. Finally adjusting the bios setting to a fictional user setup worked and the Linux recognized the proper drive.

    Thanks for your detailed instructions on performing this upgrade!

  14. Dec 31, 2001 #14 of 1590

    HTH No Avatar Selected

    Aug 28, 2000
    Lincoln, NE
    The download for the altered larger version of Kazymyr's Boot Cd image v2.6g containing DTiVoMad 4.0 and all necessary utilities is being served as "text/plain" instead of "application/octet-stream". The host serving that file needs to be taught that .iso files require binary transfer and not to assume they are text files, otherwise downloads may become corrupted as CRLF conversions are performed.
  15. Dec 31, 2001 #15 of 1590

    foo New Member

    Oct 2, 2001
    SF, CA, US
    Just a note of thanks.. a couple of weeks ago I did a DTiVo upgrade to 2 80gb drives for a total of 149 hrs.

  16. Dec 31, 2001 #16 of 1590

    Bush_Pilot Guest


    Tivo will try to take away your 800 number privilages when you reset under ver 2.5-01-1-011.

    I reset just before trying to back up. Then, dummy me, I realized I had not written down the software version number. Tivo made me go thru all the setup screens before I could get to the sys info screen. In the phone setup section, they tried to make me use a long distance number even though I live in the sticks at a ski resort. This was completley different than the procedures with the older ver software.

    Another thing they did not warn me about was just how long a sys reset takes. Mine took over an hour and was totally unnecessary for me to do. Shame on rookies like me.
  17. Dec 31, 2001 #17 of 1590

    tivobernd New Member

    Dec 19, 2001
    A word of thanks!

    The upgrade HowTo document is great! Upgraded my DirectTivo to 230 hours today in less than 2 hours total. And it is running like a charm!

    Thanks again for the great document and links!!!
  18. Dec 31, 2001 #18 of 1590

    daveo4tivo !=special member

    Jun 30, 2001
    San Jose,...
    thanks to Hinsdale and the wonderful instructions.

    1 TiVo down (68 hour SAT-T60)
    2 TiVo's to go ;)
  19. Jan 1, 2002 #19 of 1590

    dsmith48 New Member

    Dec 17, 2001
    Central Time

    I see the "last updated" section of your how-to has recently changed. Is there a section in which I can find what exactly has been updated. I am not sure if I should print out another copy, I am days short of an upgrade and my current printed copy is covered with my notes.

    Thanks in advance,
  20. Jan 2, 2002 #20 of 1590

    HTH No Avatar Selected

    Aug 28, 2000
    Lincoln, NE
    BTW, according to the HTTP standard, the browser must adhere to the Content-Type supplied by the server, and therefore must treat this .iso file as text/plain as declared by the server. Clicking on the link to that file will cause it to appear in the browser rather than the user being prompted to save the file to disk, as well as conversions of line end sequences to CR, LF, or CRLF as appropriate for the platform.

    Therefore, downloads may be possible using Internet Explorer which is infamous for ignoring this requirement in the HTTP standard by ignoring the Content-Type header and instead sniffing the downloaded content to determine the type for itself, resulting in more broken server configurations like this.
    Still, the trevor server must be reconfigured to not serve .iso files as text/plain, or zip the file, or an alternative server set up for this file that is properly configured.

    Does anyone know who to contact directly for problems with that server? There's no identifying information on its root index, and I can't find reference in the Hinsdale FAQ to who runs it.

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