S3 and TivoHD Functionality without Phone or Internet

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by parzec, Aug 23, 2007.

  1. parzec

    parzec Wizard of Oz

    Jun 21, 2002
    Charlotte, NC
    I was thinking about putting one in my mountain house (which lacks telephone and cable but has great OTA reception) Has anyone figured out a way to spoof the Tivo Servers so that I could get the Tivo data from my main house, and load it onto a laptop, then connect it to the Tivo in the mountain house for the service data? Since I go up every weekend and Tivo service data is for a two week period, I should be able to record most of what I need. NOTE: I am assuming that the Tivo does not use the PSIP data for scheduling recordings, if it can use PSIP data then the whole question is moot.

    The other option of carting the Tivo back and forth would not work because my OTA reception at home is through dual antennas (180 degree different directions) and the Tivos aren't smart enough to switch antenna inputs -- fortunately i have a true dual tuner on a HDTPC that "knows" which signals are on each antenna.

    If there is no way to port the data to a subbed unit, the other question is how much funtionality is there with an unsubbed unit. I know you can't manual record and there is no program data, but is there at least 30 minute buffer and channel logos WITHOUT a subscription?
  2. bkdtv

    bkdtv New Member

    Jan 9, 2003
    DC Metro Area
    If you have no Internet and no phone service, the TivoHD is pretty much a doorstop.

    I haven't tested the TivoHD without a subscription, but with other boxes, you get no recording of any kind and no guide information of any kind. You can switch channels and pause but that is it.

    I take it there is no cell service at that 'mountain house' ? Routers are available that will convert cell data plans to a usable ethernet port for use by a Tivo.
  3. oo7plyr

    oo7plyr New Member

    Jul 10, 2007
    Can you give an example of said router? I'm not aware of such a device.
  4. d_anders

    d_anders Sr Legacy Member

    Oct 12, 2000
    Twin Cities...
    Can you get good cellular data service there? Depending on the carrier, one may be much better than the other...

    Verizon and Sprint currently have the best performing data plans in the United
    States...they're CDMA/EVDO based. Internationally, it's a different story, but I'm assuming we're only talking about a US based need here.

    1) Cellular data plan with an aircard, and a supportable router, like the one noted above would work....and the easist to implement....you can leave the card and keep the service running the whole time...or use the same card for your laptop when you're not at the cabin.

    With cellular data you have an number of other options..depending on how technical you are.

    2) Cellular data card in a laptop (there are easy ways to make your laptop into a wireless access point), so while you are up at the cabin you can refresh the guide data on your box. Option 1 gives you the same overall flexibility of usage with a laptop too.

    3) Sounds a little crazy, but certain MS mobile 5 & 6 Pocket PC phones with a data plan (sometimes usually less expensive than the plans required for the cards), that also have wifi capability can also be turned into little access points for other wireless devices...there is third party software that is available to do this on a data enabled / wifi capable pocket pc phone.

    So while you are up at the cabin you can refresh the guide data on your box.

    All three can can give you internet access on all your internet based needs at the cabin. In terms of overall performance and maximizing bandwidth with a data plan, each of the options are also the same ranking I would give each.

    Worst case with any of the options 1-3, only gprs or low bandwidth 1X data roaming may be possible....but still enough to provide data (albeit slow) to the TiVo.

    P.S. Discussion around the ability to spoofing the TiVo Servers, even for a supported and subscribed TiVo, is a likely on a slippery slope of discussion equal or close to the ability of stealing the service....which is a discussion not permitted on this forum....

    Bottom line, you need manage some type of data connection to TiVo servers either via phone or some type of internet service.
  5. GoHokies!

    GoHokies! O2->CO2 Converter

    Sep 21, 2005
    This could work just fine as long as you didn't try to watch TV while you had the Tivo at your house. The Tivo doesn't have to know that it's connecting from a location that it doesn't get anything OTA (you don't even need to hook at an antenna to it at your old house). Before you go up to the mountains, just hook it up to power and the network, force a connection to get the latest guide data and you're golden (as long as you don't stay up in the mountains for more than 21 days at a stretch and run out of guide data).
  6. parzec

    parzec Wizard of Oz

    Jun 21, 2002
    Charlotte, NC
    Thanks for all the replies - especially the cell data router converter which was news to me. BTW: I have verizon and it works great in the mountains, but it is in an "extended serivce" area, so voice but not data works. Looks like the only workable option is to cart the Tivo back and forth--

    How convenient would it be though, if there was a utility to copy Tivo guide data to a USB drive from the net, and a tivo app that allow the user to just plug the memory card into any subbed Tivo's USB port and use it as the source for guide data?
  7. bkdtv

    bkdtv New Member

    Jan 9, 2003
    DC Metro Area
    There are also adapters for Bluetooth cell phones that give you a phone jack from a cell (w/o data service). That should work, too.


    I have not personally tried this.

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