Tivo Freezing

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by Kerryokie, May 11, 2004.

  1. Kerryokie

    Kerryokie New Member

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    Nov 24, 2002
    I've had my Series 2 for about 9 months with no problems. But the other day I was watching a recorded program and the picture suddenly froze and wouldn't respond to the remote. The Tivo's front panel showed the yellow light. I unplugged the Tivo from the UPS so it would do a restart and afterward was able to resume watching my program. However when I turned on the TV this evening the screen was black and the Tivo wouldn't respond to the remote again. The front panel light was green this time. I unplugged again for another restart and got the unit going but it had failed to record a show I had programmed it to record. Everything seems to be working fine for the moment but that's two failures in two days. Does anyone have any ideas what is happening to my unit? Could this have anything to do with the recent Music & Photos free-trial they are offering (but which I haven't taken advantage of)?

    Also, I was once told by Dell that if you leave your PC on all the time you should do a restart every few days. Since the Tivo is always on and recording would it also benefit by weekly restarts?
     
  2. JPriller

    JPriller just some guy

    5,854
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    Nov 21, 2001
    Lansing, MI
    There's no need to periodically restart a TiVo (or a PC, for that matter). All that does is stress the components needlessly. Only power-cycle either when you have to.

    It's hard to say what's causing your problem, but the hard disk going bad sounds the most likely. That's what usually causes freeze-ups.
     
  3. lrbarnes

    lrbarnes New Member

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    Mar 3, 2003
    My TiVo has been stopping and starting during playback. Is that the only explanation - that the hard disk is going bad?
     
  4. JPriller

    JPriller just some guy

    5,854
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    Nov 21, 2001
    Lansing, MI
    If it goes in fits and jerks but doesn't seize up entirely (requiring a reboot) then other posibilities are (I'm assuming you have a stand-alone TiVo, not a DirecTV-TiVo):

    A weak input signal. The TiVo won't record when it thinks it's lost the signal, and they can be pretty sensitive. Check all cables and connectors. If you've got plain analog cable into the TiVo, try removing any splitters you have as a test.

    Excess heat. That causes the MPEG chip to act wonky. Check the internal temperature on your System Information screen. A stand-alone TiVo shouldn't be any hotter than the low 40's.

    And it could always be the hard drive. :(
     
  5. lrbarnes

    lrbarnes New Member

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    Mar 3, 2003
    Thanks!

    It does not seize up entirely. It just pauses and then starts again and then pauses for a longer period and starts up again.


    I checked the internal temp. and it's normal.

    Also, I have a stand-alone TiVo.

    My next task will be to check the connections.

    Thanks again and I'll let you know if this fixes the problem.
     
  6. WabbyTwax

    WabbyTwax New Member

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    Jan 21, 2004
    I am having the same exact problem with my standalone tivo. I've had it about 5 months now and just last week it started showing pixelation and freezing at random points while watching live tv and playing back recorded shows. Is this a bad hard drive? Does tivo cover this under warranty?
     
  7. JPriller

    JPriller just some guy

    5,854
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    Nov 21, 2001
    Lansing, MI
    It could be the drive, or the other things I mentioned above (heat, weak signal, bad cable/connectors). At 5 months old the unit is probably out of warranty (the standard is just 90 days) unless you bought an extended warranty for it. It wouldn't hurt to check where you bought it, though.
     
  8. jerobi

    jerobi News/Deal Junkie

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    Sep 28, 2000
    Several of us have been noticing freezeups since a week or so ago. Either it's a coincidence that we're all having hard drive problems, or it has something to do with a new software update pushed down around then.

    I'm sure statistically it's acceptable that a small percentage of people have HD errors at any given time, of course. But no one likes to be in that boat.
     
  9. Kreeper-X

    Kreeper-X New Member

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    May 24, 2004
    I've been having a similar problem that just started up last night at about 4am... The player was going just fine and I was watching the Tampa Bay lightning Whoop the Flyers when it just stopped. It would start again, play about 2 to 4 seconds and then freeze for an equal amount of time.

    I pulled the plug, and reboot the machine and it worked fine for about 15 minutes and then it started doing the same thing. It would not resond to the remote, but when I hit the Tivo button it made the Tivo sound, but it just sat there... Keep in mind that my player was working fie until last night without a problem...

    This time I rebooted the machine, forced it to make the nightly call again, and then put it on standby.

    This morning it worked like a charm for about 10 hours and then it started again. This time I noticed that the fan in the back was pumping out some seriously warm air so I now have it unplugged and letting it cool down... Tomorrow I plan on taking it apart (since it's no longer under warranty) and giving it a good cleaning and I'm thinking of replacing the fan in the back... I've had this player for going on 2 years no with no problems until just recently...

    Does anyone have any suggestions on what to look for while I'm in the unit?
     
  10. WabbyTwax

    WabbyTwax New Member

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    Jan 21, 2004
    That sounds exactly like what is happening with mine. Only I was rooting for the flyers and I actually switched to VCR because i was getting mad when it would freeze up. Flyers wouldnt be the Flyers though if they didnt lose in the semifinals though right?

    Anyway is this recently surfaced problem software related or hardware is my question.
     
  11. Kreeper-X

    Kreeper-X New Member

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    May 24, 2004
    Well, since my Wings choked this year (again) I kinda took to the Lightning and am PRAYING that they beat the Flames and take home thier first Cup.

    I'm not sure if it is indeed a temporature problem now though, because my system is running at 32c at the moment... I think it's kinda odd that several people are experiencing the same problems at about the same time...

    I still plan on stripping it down and cleaning it out.
     
  12. WabbyTwax

    WabbyTwax New Member

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    Jan 21, 2004
    Yeah im regularly a penguins fan. Right now Im at least hopeful for the AHL penguins team to take the calder cup and I'm following those games closely. I was also rooting for nashville earlier in the season and was at game 4 of the predators/wings game in nashville to watch vokoun get the 3-0 shutout. I am surprised though that the wings couldnt get farther than they did and they even have my all time favorite player Robert Lang!
     
  13. Kreeper-X

    Kreeper-X New Member

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    May 24, 2004
    I know... I think that it's got a lot to do with the coaching... Scotty kept the guys in line... It just seemed like Dave just kinda let the boys run the show and they just looked kinda flat even against Nashville... (which is nothing new... They always play flat against Nashville. I've been to see my mighty Wings in Nashville five times now and each time they've either lost or tied...

    Anyway, back on target. Tivo unit has been cleaned out and is running perfectly right now and running at 38c. I'll post again if the freezing issue comes back up today.
     
  14. sweetie

    sweetie New Member

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    May 24, 2004
    I am without a tivo for a few days. ( boy am I addicted) I too have been using my Tivo for 2 years without a hitch and then bang a few days ago the freezing up as described.

    One thing I was curious about is what do you think about making a backup now onto another drive . If its the drive thats bad I would think it might be possible. I have not turned my tivo on since it kept freezing. I know if I reboot it it will start for a bit but would like to get a backup quickly. I never thought of backing it up in its Virgin state but I do have another Tivo that is working correctly and can take a copy from that drive too. They should be the same since both were HDR212 . One was already upgraded with more harddrive space prior but I never touched the one that is crapping out.

    I have at this present moment opneed up the Tivo and one thing I did notice it is very dirty. SO maybe the cleaning is needed.

    I would like an answer to the backup question if anyone has any comments on backing up a drive on the fritz.?
     
  15. DarkLighter

    DarkLighter New Member

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    May 24, 2004
    I have had my sony svr3000 since last september, no problems ever. In the last week, it has started to freeze and freeze/reboot.

    Software rev is 4.0.1b-01-2-110 lifetime subscription with home media option (since september).

    When watching recorded shows it will freeze for a little bit (4-10 seconds) then play then freeze again. Sometimes it recovers, sometimes it freezes completely and then reboots after about 30 seconds.

    I first noticed a crash about a week ago, when I turned on the tv, tivo was in a black screen state and I had to reboot it manually. Since then it has done the freeze & freeze/reboot thing about 4 times (twice today!).

    I also noticed it being extra slow when playing streaming media from a local computer. It would take a few seconds to start actually playing a selected song.

    This is all new behavior within the last week, and I would agree that if it is not a weird software bug, it is definitely a hard drive problem. TiVo is on 24/7 with good ventilation and a steady temp of 49C. It had never crashed before the first one a week or so ago.

    I saw this post here and thought I should say this also just started happening to me. I don't know if the "me too's" here constitute an abnormal number of machines failing like this at once or if it would be a normal failure rate, just thought I would add my two cents.

    DL
     
  16. Kreeper-X

    Kreeper-X New Member

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    May 24, 2004
    Okay, Everything was going fine, I put my Tivo into standby mode while I left the house. I come back after work and hit the TV power and there's a black screen.

    I hit the Tivo Button and nothing happens... It seemed that the unit wasn't responding to the remote at all...

    I rebooted the Tivo like normal, got it to come back, and all my shows had been recorded except for one show that was all screwed up... Well I delete the screwy show and start to watch sone of my other recordings and 15 seconds into it, the thing starts the pause, play, pause, play, pause play. I reboot again, then I let it sit a while and check the internal temporature of the unit which was 39c. The unit had made it's daily call and worked out all the data and was working perfectly. So I choose another show and again, about 15 seconds into the show it starts again...

    It's recording everything jsut fine, but it's just not going to let me watch anything off the drive...

    I called the support center and got the stupid voice recognition computer and got a 15 minute run around until it finally told me that the support center was closed and I should call back later...

    I'll be calling them tomorrow and getting it looked at... It's going to kill me to be without my Tivo, but It's pretty much useless ot me now...
     
  17. dirtypacman

    dirtypacman Coming and going

    8,025
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    Feb 3, 2004
    MA
    I just thought I would pipe in---- i have noticed also for the first time yesterday a freeze. The freeze happened several times over the course of 1 hour- 6-8 seconds black screen then would come back. I was recording the show and starting from the beginning about 1 hour in this happened.

    I am hoping it is either a problem with a poor signal or tempature issue-- i dont want to have to disconnect my tivo.
     
  18. Laird

    Laird New Member

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    Mar 28, 2002
    I was watching a show earlier this week and noticed that it was skipping/freezing a lot. I just wrote it off as a bad cable signal. Unfortunately, the last two nights our unit has completely frozen, even while inactive. In the morning we see a still frame (as if someone has paused) from some time in the night. The TiVo is completely frozen - won't respond to its remote, and has to be rebooted by pulling the plug.
    This unit has been completely wonderful for years now - what's made it suddenly start freezing?

    SA Phillips w/2nd drive added
     
  19. JPriller

    JPriller just some guy

    5,854
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    Nov 21, 2001
    Lansing, MI
    A completely frozen TiVo is a good indication of a hard drive going bad. Eventually it'll probably give you the Green Screen of Death (GSOD) on bootup.
     
  20. TivoGeezer

    TivoGeezer Snow-ina-ear

    4,587
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    Dec 3, 2003
    Danbury, CT
    Does this sound like an epidemic? Just how widespread is this? Although my SVR2000 has work nearly flawlessly for almost 4 years, on Monday it froze up in the middle of recording Everybody Loves Raymond at about 9:20 PM EDT. I had to restart the Tivo to get it to respond to the remote. The recording was truncated, of course. Can any Tivo people tell us if there was a recent software mod which could be causing this?
     

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