upgrading a 540040 ?s

Discussion in 'TiVo Upgrade Center' started by 2njl, Jan 23, 2006.

  1. 2njl

    2njl New Member

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    Jan 23, 2006

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    I just ordered a 540040 with the intention of either replacing the stock 40GB drive or adding a second 300GB drive. Looking at Weaknees, I see if you want to add a drive, they want you to send the unit in for them to do the work, but if you want to replace the drive they sell DIY kits for that...and that they sell the brackets and other accessories necessary for adding a drive yourself. I don't see anything in their FAQ about why they have this policy. Is there some complexity (other than the need to expand the swapfile) in taking a 40GB unit and adding a 300GB drive?

    Am I better off just doing a drive replacement and putting the original 40GB drive on the shelf as a "backup"?
     
  2. knr

    knr Geek anyone?

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    Oct 13, 2005
    Cherry Hill, NJ
    I had the same thoughts as you; I bought my parents a 240040 two years ago for Xmas, and it was a hit... we were constantly running out of space to record programs.

    This Xmas, I finally bit the bullet and went to research upgrade options for the 240040. I was originally just going to add a second drive; Weaknees had their caveat that to add a second drive with over OS 7.1 I had to send it to them. Knowing I couldn't pry the TiVo's remote from my parents hands, I finally decided to just get a drive upgrade kit.

    Bought a 160gb replacement drive from them. Installed in less than 10 minutes, TiVo booted up, and whammo, over 100 hours of recording.

    I kept the 240040's original stock 40gb drive as a backup in case something bad happens...

    -Kyle
     
  3. bomberjim

    bomberjim Member

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    Aug 30, 2003
    Rapid City...
    If you want to ADD a drive, it requires you hook the original and the new drive up to a computer and marry them together using some Linux programming commands. Plus, you'll need a new bracket to mount it, and maybe an additional cooling fan. So yes, it is more complex. Given that the 40 is so small, and the chance of a HD failure is doubled with 2 drives, it's normally a better idea to upgrade to one large drive rather than add one to your 40 unless you want to upgrade to 2 large drives.

    Jim L
     
  4. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    Feb 18, 2004
    Ontario Canada.
    You are always better off running a single drive, as there is an increased risk of system failure with two drives.

    The only time two drives are relatively okay, is when both drives are somewhat large (IMO, 140 or 160 GB or larger)
     
  5. blindlemon

    blindlemon tivoheaven.co.uk

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    May 12, 2002
    Malmesbury, UK

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    ...ahhh, but surely the bigger the drive, the greater the chance of a failure? More sectors=more chances of a sector going bad etc. etc. :D:D

    The only truly 'safe' drive, IMHO, is a solid-state device like a USB stick - and they're not supported. Failing that, one drive is better than two because, apart from the thoretically increased chance of a failure, you get twice the noise and twice the heat with 2 drives.
     
  6. HomeUser

    HomeUser Active Member

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    Jan 12, 2003
    A2 Michigan
    Sorry; USB sticks, "flash drives", etc are only good for x number of writes.
     
  7. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    No, just two drives.are isky, due to added heat, power consumption, and two points of failure.
     
  8. 2njl

    2njl New Member

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    Jan 23, 2006
    Ok...so it sounds like I'm better off just shelving the 40GB stock drive and maybe looking into a bracket when/if the 300GB drive is full and we feel like we need more space.

    What's the story with "hacking" the 5400XX units enough to just get network access and xfer content to a PC for viewing/burning? I just read some stuff elsewhere that says you have to socket and modify the Tivo boot ROM in order to gain access to the Tivo via the network.

    Short of doing that, are the only ways to get recorded content out of the Tivo to:

    a) yank the hard drive (yuck)
    b) "play the content" out as if playing to a TV...but instead sending it to a video capture card or standalone DVD burner

    That's kind of letdown, as I was looking forward to being able to control the unit via the network and play with recorded content on my PC...but I guess even without those features, it'll mostly serve its purpose (letting us watch the shows we want when we have time).

    Assuming that's the case, I guess I wasted money buying the Tivo 802.11g network adaptor...I mean if it's only going to use the network for getting programming info, I could have gotten by with a cheaper 802.11b adaptor.

    Ah, wait. I see now with TivoToGo, you no longer have to hack your Tivo to get your hands on the recorded content. It appears all is not lost, and I will be able to get the majority of the functionality I want out of my series 2 unit.
     
  9. HomeUser

    HomeUser Active Member

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    A2 Michigan
    The Stand Alone Series2 Tivos can transfer programs to another TiVo or to a PC through a home network you need a USB network adaptor and a program called TiVoDesktop The Tivo can also get the programming and updates through the network.
    .
     

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