Advertisements The PVR was fine, last night, when I went to bed. Today, around noon, turned on the TV and saw the hideous gray screen of death: Welcome. Powering up . Having been through this before (with a one-year old D* SD 40GB DVR unit), I immediately assumed the worst and presumed it had been in this sad state for hours. Nonetheless, I quickly switched from 'impending doom' mode to 'hopeful troubleshooting' mode and pulled the power cord from the back, waited several minutes, then restored power. Nope. Nada. Gray screen of death -- which might as well have stated: Youre screwed! I purchased this unit direct from D* on 23 August 2005. That makes it a smidge over 4 months old. For its entire short life, it resided quietly on a well-ventilated shelf (open on all sides) and lived on power from an equally new and dedicated UPS/surge protector which, in turn, was fed from an over-sized, over-priced, and under-utilized Monster brand surge protector power strip. The unit was never bumped, jarred, or touched since the day it was installed. D* Retention Dept. says theyll mail out a free replacement in 3 business days. Thats a huge help -- we can all attest how expensive these units are (despite rebates, credits, and what have you). New or refurb, the CSR didnt say (and I didn't think to ask), but I suppose it doesnt matter either way -- given how bad the reliability seems to be, from what Ive read in this forum. Despite the replacement to come, this h/w failure is pathetic and significantly aggravating. Once again, with a D* DVR unit, I have lost 10s of gigabytes of recorded programming. Unviewed programming that I was looking forward to viewing with friends and family this week during my vacation is now gone. Numerous PPV movies gone. One of a kind concert performances - gone. The familys entire Season Pass list - gone. None of this stuff is backed up. Which brings me to a question: could my HD programming have been backed up? I happen to own an unused Sony DVD/VCR recorder (about a year old). If I connected it to the replacement unit thats coming, could I then dump HD content onto DVDs for backup? (Or, would the HD content need to be downconverted to SD prior to being dumped to DVD?, which I suspect is the case.) In short, how does one backup HD content from an HR10-250 unit? I think the answer to my question is: you cant. Wonderful!!! Given how incredibly unreliable these units seem to be (its only a matter of time before yours -- and my replacement -- become paperweights), what is YOUR backup strategy? Here are some new rules Im thinking of adopting: (1) At a minimum, make a list of Season Pass settings and keep it somewhere safe. (2) Dump desired content to DVD, if/when possible. (3) Consider paying the $8/mo (YMMV) to buy the DirecTV Protection Plan. The only thing more painful than sudden DVR hardware death is having to pay big $$$ to replace it. (Hence the DPP mentioned above.) Despite all, however, one must keep perspective; so as jamesbobo wisely reminds: "Many people suffer in this world, we should not complain about TV. I couldn't agree more. Seasons greetings to you all.