Unlocking drive that is USB-connected (Mac OSX, MFSLive)

Discussion in 'TiVo Series 1 - UK' started by tartan_haggis, Sep 13, 2009.

  1. tartan_haggis

    tartan_haggis MacTiVo

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    Jun 13, 2005
    Cambridgeshire

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    Having long dispensed with PCs in favour of Apple Macs, I am now left with the small issue of trying to upgrade my TiVos without a PC.

    I have set up a Virtual Machine using Parallels, and configured it to boot from the MFSLive-1.4.iso image. So far, so good.

    I have purchased 2 x USB2.0 to SATA/IDE cables, and connected the 120Gb Maxtor IDE drive from one of my TiVos up to it. Similarly, I have connected a Samsung 1Tb SATA drive to the other cable.

    MFSLive recognises the SATA 1Tb drive no problem, however with the Maxtor it only comes up as a 10Mb drive - so presumably it's locked.

    Since the Maxtor drive itself is an upgrade, then it must have been unlocked in order for the upgrade to be performed, so I'm guessing that the TiVo has relocked the drive after it was installed.

    So, to my dilemma.

    I can run "diskutil" from the MFSLive Linux image, however this assumes that the drive is connected on a /dev/hdx device whereas (because they are USB connected) my drives are /dev/sda and /dev/sdb. I want to unlock the drive that is connected to /dev/sda.

    Any suggestions as to how to do this?

    Buying a PC for this purpose is definitely the LAST resort!

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. ggieseke

    ggieseke Well-Known Member

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    May 30, 2008
    At the pottom of http://www.nltivo.net/index.php/Unlock_Maxtor_HDD there's a method listed to permanently disable disk locking. I have no idea if it works on UK TiVos (I've never even tried it on my US Sony SVR-2000) but if it does you could put the Maxtor back in the TiVo, unlock it and try again.
     
  3. tartan_haggis

    tartan_haggis MacTiVo

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    Jun 13, 2005
    Cambridgeshire
    @ggieseke thanks although that page talks about using the Windows boot floppy which assumes IDE-connected drives, and diskutil as described above.
     
  4. bhedge

    bhedge New Member

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    Mar 20, 2005
    Newcastle...
    Can you not put the locked drive in the Mac then boot the Mac with the MFSLive disk?
     
  5. Trinitron

    Trinitron New Member

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    Jan 20, 2003
    North West

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    Does diskutil -i list the USB drives?

    One method of unlocking I have read about is to power up the locked drive in Tivo then swap the IDE connector for the USB one (keeping the drive power cable connected to Tivo throughout the procedure). It should then be recognised by the other computer as an unlocked disk.

    Disclaimer: I have never tried this personally and will not be responsible for a wrecked Tivo or HDD!! I get nervous enough booting the Tivo drive from a Live CD on a Windows PC...
     
  6. ggieseke

    ggieseke Well-Known Member

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    May 30, 2008
    The last section of that page (Disable harddisk locking on TiVo) is what I was referring to. The rest of it talks about diskutil and qunlock, and I don't think either one was written with USB in mind.

    I was hoping that you could get your TiVo to unlock it and leave it unlocked, then use MFSLive.
     
  7. tartan_haggis

    tartan_haggis MacTiVo

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    Jun 13, 2005
    Cambridgeshire
    @ggieseke yes, see what you mean. Think I need to unlock the drive first (out of the TiVo). What the command does is prevent TiVo from re-locking the unlocked drive when I put it back in.

    @bhedge no, I have a MacBook Pro, so no IDE connectors to attach the TiVo drive to as the internal drive is Serial-ATA.

    @Trinitron diskutil -i only shows the virtual HDD of the VM, not the USB drives.

    So it looks increasingly like I'll need to obtain a PC with an IDE motherboard to unlock the drive!!
     
  8. bhedge

    bhedge New Member

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    Mar 20, 2005
    Newcastle...
    I have only Macs too so I had to buy a PC specifically for the job. The good news is it was only £12
     
  9. verses

    verses TiVoTiVoTiVoTiVoTiVo

    331
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    Nov 6, 2002
    I would have thought aging PCs would popup on freecycle fairly often.
     
  10. healeydave

    healeydave from tivoland.com

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    Jun 4, 2003
    Midlands
    What a shame you have a Maxtor drive, its only those and the original Quantum drives that lock.

    I've never needed to unlock on the Mac but I too dumped PC's in favor of the Mac a couple of years ago. I do still have an old clunker lying around though should I need it.

    I do have compiled mfstool and tpip for Mac OSX too, so when it comes to building Tivo drives, I can do it natively inside a Mac OSX Bash session. Since a Mac is a much closer relation to a Tivo than a PC is, I don't need to use VMware, Parallels or boot the computer up into a different operating system, I can simply connect the drive and go to a bash prompt in OSX.

    I have a USB to IDE connector with separate PSU that will power up IDE drives off the USB port and a simple MFSTool Restore command is all that is needed.

    I find it rather ironic that the PC is relied on so heavily for Tivo work when as far as hardware and O/S goes, all other platforms, Linux & MAC based are a much closer relation to Tivo than the PC really is :)
     

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