Series 2 upgrade - conflicting info from Weaknees & other retailers

Discussion in 'TiVo Upgrade Center' started by jpn2579, Oct 11, 2005.

  1. jpn2579

    jpn2579 New Member

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    Weakness' website says that Series 2 TiVo branded models that run software V7.2 or newer require the upgrade/adding of second drive to be done at their place. When I ask why, all I get is:

    For Series 2 units running 7.2 software, the technology has changed,
    and the upgrade has to be done here if you are adding a single drive.

    Thanks,

    WeaKnees.com
    http://www.weaknees.com


    I want to know why they think this is necessary, since I've checked other places/retailers and nobody else is talking about this.

    I've been tearing into, building & rebuilding PCs & my other TiVo for 16 years...and I am confident I can do this upgrade, too.

    But Weaknees (which is who I bought the second drive for the first TiVo 2 years ago) isn't selling self-install kits anymore...at least one part of the website says they're not.

    Other parts of the website are contradictory and say other things.
    And NOWHERE can I find a better explanation than what I got above.

    Jason
     
  2. mick66

    mick66 Dirty Burger

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    The 'verse

    Where? I poked around a little but didn't see anything.
     
  3. HomeUser

    HomeUser Active Member

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    Look at "requires installation" with "ADD to Your Existing Storage Capacity" for the Series2 upgrade kits TiVo Series 2 40-hour 240040 TiVo Upgrade Kits

    I wonder if it has something to do with the default swap partition size that comes on the original factory drives.
     
  4. jpn2579

    jpn2579 New Member

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    Go to the page where you actually pick an upgrade kit, there's an entry there that is a link to information about requiring the upgrade to be done at Weakness.

    Jason
     
  5. jpn2579

    jpn2579 New Member

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    Well, TiVo has screwed us all again, folks...

    It seems that other companies besides Weaknees, these other companies have yet to update their websites, but when pressed, say the same thing as Weaknees...

    Anybody running a Series 2 TiVo with software version 7.2 or newer can't do the self-install upgrade kits themselves.

    They (Weaknees) claim there's something in the software that has introduced a roadblock or glitch that makes it much harder to get a second drive into the bugger.

    I'll tell you this much, had I known this I would have done one of two things:
    1) Sent the TiVo out to be upgraded in California at Weaknees in August, when the thing was mostly idle, using a slow, cheap shipping method. DHL & FedEx want about $50 for next day shipping, and Weaknees is unclear on who pays for return shipping so far.
    2) When I bought this second TiVo, I would have paid the extra $50 and gotten the 80 hour unit in the first place. I paid $100 for the one I bought, and got a $50 rebate from TiVo. This was a great deal, but not now that I know they hosed us with the software screwup.

    There's too many things the unit is supposed to record for me to sacrifice 5 days shipping each way to get the price down to where I think the shipping is affordable, based on the $170 Weaknees wants to put a 120 Gb drive into the unit.

    TiVo is a great product, and I evangelize it whenever anybody asks me about it.
    But on the edges of things, meaning the tiny details of trying to do this or that really specific thing, they make mistakes.

    TiVoToGo rollout was a perfect example. And then, once it's available, it disappoints.

    Anyway, if anybody has bright ideas on what the BIG SECRET PROBLEM is, (Weaknees won't say) and how to do a self-install add-on yourself, I'd appreciate hearing about it.

    Obviously, it has to be a reliable method, not just "Just buy the drive and do it."
    Clearly, if all these retailers are saying that there's a problem, then it isn't as easy as it once was.

    Jason
     
  6. azitnay

    azitnay Active Member

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    I'd love to hear directly from WeaKnees where their paranoia stems from... Plenty of people have performed upgrades on 7.2 without any problems.

    Drew
     
  7. weaknees

    weaknees Active Member

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    Here's the problem in a nutshell: blessing a drive and adding it to a unit running 7.2 doesn't work. It's not paranoia, and we're not trying to hide anything, but 7.2 simply doesn't attach to blessed drives the way all previous versions of the TiVo OS did.

    mfsadd still works fine, and we are offering that as the other option. So where we normally charge $49 to install a kit if you send it to us, we now charge $30 - and that price DOES include return shipping to the customer. We've reduced the overall cost, but we certainly recognize that many potential customers don't want to send their TiVos in. Our best answer for those customers is to move to a "replace" kit instead of an "add" kit.

    This issue affects these models: 130040, 140060, 230040, 240040, 24004A, 240080, 24008A, 240140, 540040, 540080, 540140, Humax T800 and Humax T2500 - if they are running TiVo OS 7.2.
     
  8. ashu

    ashu User title defunct

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    If you've already seen the discussions pertaining to expanding the swap partition size and using larger disks (say, 200GB or larger) for the upgrade, and are comfortable with the steps - you should be fine doing it yourself. The information is ALL here :)

    weaknees and ptvupgrade are excellent options for a hassle free upgrade for those who would rather have ... less hassle :)
     
  9. azitnay

    azitnay Active Member

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    Sorry if I sounded like I was accusing you of unwarranted paranoia... I'm sure what you've found to be the case is totally true. In any event, I'm glad to hear it only affects blessing and not MFS Tools. Thanks for the info.

    Drew
     
  10. ashu

    ashu User title defunct

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    Umm, I've upgraded drives with 3.1, 4.0, 5.1 and 7.2 (last weekend!) using the same-old tried and trusted mfsbackup | mfsrestore method (the restore with -x is an mfsadd) - with no hassles. I've gone from one to two, two to one drives and all kinds of funky, unexpected combinations.

    I have never, ever used any 'blessing' commands.

    I still don't get it, and say that this is a self-upgrade. No new roadblocks have been introduced, as such, except that a newer Linux boot kernel is needed to support larger drives. A drive with ALL this exists on ptvupgrade's site.

    Drew: the OP is asking about an upgrade that MFSTools should handle. Correct me if I'm wrong. In his case, a self-upgrade should work fine.

    Do't get me wrong - I've bought weaknees stuff before (the bracket and fans and upgrade guide et al) ... and their service rocks ... this just didn't seem (to me) like a complicated case at all :)

    <edit> This could be a website misinterpretation sisue on the OPs part :)
     
  11. azitnay

    azitnay Active Member

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    Yes, the OP can do it himself with mfsadd just fine.

    The reason this is a concern for WeaKnees is that the only way they can sell "add" kits without having the customer's original drive for mfsadd purposes is to simply bless the "add" drive, and let the TiVo itself do the marrying when the customer slaps it in place. Apparently, blessing no longer works properly under 7.2.

    Totally a non-issue for people who upgrade themselves.

    Drew
     
  12. JamieP

    JamieP Member

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    Shipping a preformatted second drive that the end user can just drop into their tivo implies the use of BlessTivo and assumes that the tivo software will automatically marry the new drive to the A drive. Does this method still work with 7.2? I still see the check for an additional disk in the tivo startup scripts, so it looks like it should, but I've never tried it. It's possible that there is some conflict between BlessTivo and 7.2. Has anybody tried a BlessTivo drive addition with 7.2 at home?

    The other alternative is to run mfsadd on the PC, but this requires having both the A and the B disk, hence the requirement to send the unit in for the upgrade. I'm guessing that the "plenty of people" that have performed successful 7.2 upgrades have used mfsadd rather than BlessTivo.

    [oops -- crossed with other posts with the same info.]
     
  13. blindlemon

    blindlemon tivoheaven.co.uk

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    'blessing' is an old method of adding a second drive - search around for blesstivo - that allows you to write a signature to a bare drive which will enable it to be automatically added when it's placed in a TiVo with a stock, un-expanded, un-upgraded single drive.

    Weakness et al use this method in their 'add' kits so that folks can just open the TiVo and drop in a second drive with no need to run mfsadd.

    Apparently though, blessing doesn't work anymore with the 7.2 software.

    Edit: JamieP obviously types faster than me :)
     
  14. ashu

    ashu User title defunct

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    Ahh. And Ahh. Thanks.

    We are, indeed, blessed to have so much info and knowledge available to us on the boards :)

    Verdict:
    - Self-upgrade with both drives available - doable for a relatively hardware/upgrade savvy user
    - Upgrade with a simple pop-it-in-there-drive (and associated brackets/screws/fans) ordered online, no longer as easy as before and requires the original drive to be shipped away.
     
  15. jpn2579

    jpn2579 New Member

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    Jan 17, 2005
    Though I have many years experience with tearing into PCs,
    my experience with Linux and making the associated adjustments to an add-on drive
    to TiVo is ZERO.

    Hence my preference to a hassle-free add-on drive kit.
    I also don't like the idea of abandoning a perfectly functioning drive,
    which is Weaknees' latest suggestion, replacing the existing original small drive
    with a new single drive.

    It would seem to me that it would behoove Weaknees & others to publish more info on the problem, and maybe some smart people (with more free time than I), might
    be able to figure out how to circumvent the problem, without having to resort to the use of a linux-based PC (which I also don't have access to).

    Also, I'd like to hear from knowledgeable people about the probabilities of whatever this software problem is being present in a given TiVo. If it's 100% of the time, then say so. If not, what seems to be the likelihood? If it's 10%, then why is it not 100%? What other factors are involved?

    I admit the idea of simply replacing the single drive would solve the shipping costs, but then I would have to buy a bigger drive to offset the loss of the existing drive.

    All in all, a disappointing experience so far.

    Jason
     
  16. pgorbas

    pgorbas New Member

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    Another possible route might be possible?

    Revert your tivo to a previous software version ( assuming you can get it somewhere ) before the version 7 which causes these problems. Upgrade per usual and the let the tivo upgrade itself back to version 7 by itself.

    Of course you loose the recording programming.
     
  17. blindlemon

    blindlemon tivoheaven.co.uk

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    You don't need a linux based PC to run mfsadd - just a PC with a CDROM drive you can boot from :)

    I suspect that Weakness (or some other supplier) will soon introduce a halfway house solution - an add-on drive, supplied with a bootable CD and a script that walks you through the process of marrying the new drive to your old one with mfsadd.

    You'd need a PC, but would not have to send your old drive (or your TiVo) away to add a drive.
     
  18. jpn2579

    jpn2579 New Member

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    Jan 17, 2005

    But it would mean disrupting my PC to install the TiVo drive in it.
    Even though I built the sucker, I hate to disrupt it, I never get things back 100% the way they were it seems...Windows XP always seems to find interesting and unusual ways to screw things up.

    Jason
     
  19. bnm81002

    bnm81002 New Member

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    so the Pioneer models are of no issue here, particularly the DVR810H model?
     
  20. weaknees

    weaknees Active Member

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    Essentially, no, largely because they can only hold one drive and couldn't ever take an "add" drive.
     

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