TiVo S3 Rebooting; Help!

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by mvpgoblue, Sep 28, 2011.

  1. mvpgoblue

    mvpgoblue New Member

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    Feb 1, 2008
    I am a long-time lurker, but infrequent poster. I need some help determining what to do next.

    The second TiVo I bought is a S3 purchased in December of 2006. Been very happy with it and in ~February of 2010 I added a 1TB MyDVR Expander by Western Digital -- obviously connected by an eSATA cable.

    Things were fine until about a month ago, when the TiVo started rebooting with increasing frequency. Eventually, it got to the point where it was rebooting after about 10 or 15 minutes of being on.

    I searched the forums and contacted TiVo support. Early steps were to power down, make sure the eSATA and HDMI cables were seated properly. Also did a kickstart on the TiVo and got no errors on either the internal or external hard drive. One of the possible culprits was the external drive, but I still had a LOT of stuff on the S3 that we wanted to watch, so I didn't want to disconnect the external drive and lose all my recordings.

    After many reboots and a lot of time, I was able to isolate something at least LINKED to the problem. When my cable (the coax cable from Charter) was plugged into the back of the TiVo, I had the problem; with the coax unplugged, I had no rebooting.

    Subsequent steps involved getting two new cable cards AND having a cable tech come out, put an amplifier on the cable to the house, and confirm that the signal to the TiVo was as close as possible to "perfect." I thought the problem was solved, but it wasn't. Still got reboots.

    With football and fall programming starting up (and an irritated wife), the decision was made to purchase a new TiVo Premiere XL. (May be switching this out for a Premiere Elite if they can get the things on the market before my return period on the XL expires...but that's another story.)

    Here's where I stand today:
    • New Premiere XL is set up and working just fine.
    • TiVo S3 is still connected to the home network, and we've transferred/watched a lot of the old stuff and are nearly ready to remove it from the family room cabinet. There is one series that can't be transferred that I'd still like to watch before disconnecting the whole thing.
    • I have an OLD one-tuner, SD TiVo Series 2 on the TV in the bonus room.

    The questions:
    • What could be wrong with the S3 that it works fine when not connected to cable, but reboots when it is connected to cable? TiVo had no answers for this.
    • Obviously the S3 would be better than the S2 for the bonus room -- IF IT WORKS. What should I do? Swap out the S3 for a refurbished unit at my expense? I think it makes sense to disconnect the MyDVR Expander and try that unit in the bonus room first -- but what if I keep having the same problems?
     
  2. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

    9,461
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    May 6, 2002
    John's...
    At least one difference when the cable is disconnected: it isn't recording. Also, is there a TA attached to the TiVo?
     
  3. mvpgoblue

    mvpgoblue New Member

    7
    4
    Feb 1, 2008
    Yes -- the only way I'd use the S3 in the bonus room would be if I got it functional again. It is no good to me with no cable signal!:D If your implication is that the operating difference is that it isn't recording live TV to the buffer, then yes: I agree. Who knows if that could be the problem. Seems a bizarre source of error -- but we're well into not-typical here.

    And, yes. There is a tuning adapter in place. I have since disconnected the tuning adapter from the S3 and connected it to the new Premiere XL. No issues there. (And the tuning adapter had been in place for months before the problems started.)
     
  4. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

    9,461
    298
    May 6, 2002
    John's...
    Yes, that was indeed my implication. You asked what the difference was when the cable was disconnected, and I answered. If it weren't for the fact that it passed the kickstart tests, I would seriously suspect a disk problem. The behavior you're seeing is generally indicative of that. I still suspect that could be the source, just not quite as seriously.:D

    A couple of things you might try - Disconnect the cable and 1. transfer a program to the TiVo and see if it reboots. 2. Connect an antenna, rerun guided setup and see if reboots while recording OTA.(I realize this may not be an option unless you have an antenna lying around. I know I don't)

    Other than that - I don't know enough about SDV to say whether or not that could be the source of the problem, even with the TA not attached.
     
  5. aymanme

    aymanme Member

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    May 8, 2001
    Austin, TX
    You can try some of the kickstart methods posted often, but it sounds to me like your drive (i'd guess internal) is going south. You can try to pull it and do a backup / restore to a larger drive. The easiest way is to sacrifice the recordings. Unlike others I've never had success with the kickstarts over several Tivos. The failures seems to indicate a catastrophic failure, but passing doesn't seem to indicate that it is ok.
     

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