Upgrading using a Mac ?

Discussion in 'TiVo Upgrade Center' started by ebonovic, Dec 3, 2004.

  1. Dec 3, 2004 #1 of 68

    ebonovic has gone his way...

    Jul 24, 2001


    A co-worker of mine wants to upgrade his Tivo via a single drive replacement.

    However, he owns a Mac. (And I don't keep track of the Mac threads)

    He is also in a remote office (so I can't do it for him), and the office is 100% laptop (he supports telecommuters).

    I have found a few posts stating MFSTools 2.0 is avilable for the Mac and Series 2 systems.

    Is there a bootable ISO yet for the Mac platform?
    So he could follow Hinsdale Instructions?

    Or is he just better off somehow getting ahold of a PC to do the upgrade.

  2. Dec 3, 2004 #2 of 68

    classicsat Astute User

    Feb 18, 2004
    Ontario Canada.
    Get a PC.
  3. Dec 5, 2004 #3 of 68

    ChrisNylen New Member

    Nov 6, 2003
    New York, NY
    I would think that the MFSTools binaries would have to able to be compiled on a version of PPC Linux. I run Gentoo on my Powerbook and I'll see if I can get MFSTools to compile on there (although I doubt it), I'll get back to you on it.
  4. Dec 5, 2004 #4 of 68

    ChrisNylen New Member

    Nov 6, 2003
    New York, NY
    Well I tried to find the source for MFSTools, on the MFSTools site, they only have the binaries, and I can't seem to connect to their CVS server to get the source that way. Does anyone know where I can get the sources? If I can get these going, I can make a Gentoo PPC boot disk with MFSTools on it.
  5. Dec 6, 2004 #5 of 68

    rb5505 Member

    Jul 28, 2004
  6. Dec 6, 2004 #6 of 68

    Jasoco New Member

    Mar 30, 2004
    As a Mac user, I find your reply totally useless and uncalled for. Go back under your bridge, Troll. He was asking for help from Mac users, not PC Zealots.
  7. Dec 6, 2004 #7 of 68

    apollo8fan New Member

    Oct 23, 2003
    Right, I'd get right on that if I wanted to have a computer that was a crudely-designed, ill-conceived, virus-infected, trojan-hijacked zombie that required so much add-on software to prevent that stuff and correct the deficiencies that the system becomes useless. On second thought, I'll just stay with my PowerBook G4 and grin at the problems people have with their PC's.

    Comments like that will get you flamed 99 times out of a 100.
  8. Dec 6, 2004 #8 of 68

    Jasoco New Member

    Mar 30, 2004
    Which is something I was trying to avoid with my post. We don't need this to turn into a big argument between ignorant PC users and Mac users. Let's drop it here.
  9. Dec 7, 2004 #9 of 68

    Montaño ViVa La TiVolucíon

    Feb 6, 2002
    Sunny Cali :)
    no tools for upgrading on a Mac, Earl :(
    I guess that why I have a G4 and a PC ;)
    It's called the best of BOTH worlds!!
  10. Fofer

    Fofer Bo55man69

    Oct 29, 2000
    I am as big of a Mac zealot that you'll find, and I've made no secret of that here. However, I don't think classicsat's advice was trollish. I think it was spot-on. (Even ebonovic suggesting that getting a PC for the job wasn't out of the question...)

    The fact is, the bulk of TiVo hacking tools are available for PC. For hobbyists that just want to get the job done, tinkering for hours and trying to be the first to force a Mac to get the job done, is clearly not an efficient use of time.

    I'll go one step further and suggest the best path of them all: just get a preconfigured, preupgraded drive ready to go from Weaknees or PTVUpgrade.com:
  11. Ladd Morse

    Ladd Morse Member

    Feb 21, 2002
    Along with many other members here, my house has been Mac-only for decades. Last Spring I finally admitted that "you just can't get there from here" when it comes to tinkering with TiVo hard drives and picked up a basic PC when it came time to upgrade the Series One TiVo to the current 250GB drive.

    The kicker is that you don't have to actually purchase a PC. You simply need one that will turn on without emitting smoke and has the very basic requirement that it has (or can be updated) to a BIOS that understands hard drives larger than 120GB.

    I guarantee that you know (or can easily find) someone who has one of these PCs gathering dust in a closet in their basement. They'll be right next to the unused exercise equipment.

    The PC I was given is a Dell mini-tower with a whompin' 166MHz CPU (not a mis-type - 166MHz). Extra bonus was a working CD drive. Booted from the PTVUpgrade CD-ROM, followed the instructions and it worked fabulously for formatting a 250GB hard drive to better-than-TiVo specs and copying over all the programs on the previous 120GB drive.

    Ask your friends, stick a note up on the bulletin board at work or your local grocery store.

    No, you can't do it from your Mac. But it's easy to work around.
  12. ebonovic

    ebonovic has gone his way...

    Jul 24, 2001
    Okay Okay Okay...

    This isn't a Mac VS PC debate... both sides have their pros and cons, and uses...

    I was simply trying to find out if there was an ISO or tools out there, as searches came up with: yes there is MFSTOOLS for MAC, but none of them refered to a download site.

    Getting a PC is possible, just not very practical... So he will be holding off on his upgrade, until he comes up here for a meeting or training or something and I can do it with one of our office's work PCs.
  13. cab1024

    cab1024 Boob

    Aug 3, 2005
    Well I took your advice, emailed the IT dept and by the time I got back from lunch there was a P3 with 512MB RAM, a 10GB HD, and no OS sitting in my cubicle when I returned.

    So what's the best free OS, preferably with a GUI, I can download and install on this 10GB HD? I don't know the processor speed. It is Dell Optiplex GX110, but I have a feeling that comes in a variety of speeds.
  14. Jasoco

    Jasoco New Member

    Mar 30, 2004
    If someone could come up with a foolproof way for me to take an off the shelf (Or ordered off a site) HD, connect it up to my Mac mini and clone whatever I need over to it, then put it in my TiVo, I'd do it. I've been stuck with 40GB forever. And I'm tired of waiting for Series 3. (Which is the only time I'll buy a new TiVo.)
  15. ADent

    ADent Active Member

    Jan 7, 2000
    Denver, CO
    There were reports of MFSTools running on a Mac.

    I use my Mac to surf the web while MFStools runs on a cheap PC. I originally used a free PC the neighbors gave me, but bought a $299 (no rebate!) machine a couple of years ago to do this type of stuff.
  16. JohnTivo

    JohnTivo Member

    Dec 2, 2002
    Carlsbad, CA
  17. qdemn7

    qdemn7 New Member

    Jun 7, 2005
    Fort Worth,...
    Rather than buy a whole PC, all you need is a motherboard, cpu, heatsink, PSU, memory and optical drive. You don't need a case or any HD for the PC components. Check if there's a Fry's Electronics near you or got to one of the online retailers. You can get a combo consisting of motherboard, (it should have integrated video) CPU and HS for under a $100. Get a cheap PSU, cheap memory, and optical drive and you're good to go. The whole thing should set you back no more than $200 if you get the cheapest stuff you can. Most people have extra KB and Mice laying around, but if not there are cheap ones of each for under $10 each.

    This way Mac purists won't be violating their ethics, since they don't actually "own" a PC, just some parts. :D ;)
  18. SteveInNC

    SteveInNC Active Member

    Jun 23, 2005
    RTP, NC
    For purposes of doing a Tivo upgrade, you don't need to load an OS. The typical MFSTOOLS ISO images out there are based around a bootable Linux CD, and typically install themselves into a ram disk. You can run the required tools with no OS disk (other than the CD) even connnected to the drive chain. I just did exactly that last night.

    If you just want to put an OS on there, do a web search for both Debian and Knoppix. ISO images should be easy to find on the net.

    As to the Mac debate, I've been a Mac owner since the Plus, and have a dual G5 and iMac G5 now. I also have an ancient Emachine I keep around for stuff like this. You can download the required ISOs to a Mac and burn them from there - they'll work fine in the x86 box.
  19. dylanemcgregor

    dylanemcgregor Well-Known Member

    Jan 31, 2003
    Corner of...
    Thanks for the link. If anyone gets this working on a mac, could you post here?

    I am in a similar situation as the OP's coworker. I have a Mac G4 and a PC laptop and I have been on the lookout for a cheap hard drive deal so that I can upgrade my DRT800. I have done TiVo upgrades on a PC before, but I do not feel proficient enough on the Mac side of things to attempt this until I have solid confirmation that it works and is easy. If I screw up my girlfriend's Mac in anyway I will not be a happy camper.
  20. apollo8fan

    apollo8fan New Member

    Oct 23, 2003
    OK, folks, I successfully upgraded my SD-DVR40 from it's 40GB Western Digital drive to a 120GB Maxtor using my Powerbook G4 with OS X 10.4 (aka: Tiger).

    To do so required TWO USB drive enclosures and MFSTOOL for the Mac, which I had to compile myself after downloading the source code.

    I'm going to keep this brief, 'cuz there is tons of info about these commands already. Essentially, I used three commands for the job:

    1. mfstool backup (for saving the drive info)
    2. dd (for duplicating the drive)
    3. mfstool add (for adding the additional partition)

    Yes, the command is "mfstool" in all instances. This is a result of the Mac port.

    Take the Tivo drive, put it into its USB enclosure and plug it into the Mac FIRST; this drive will be "/dev/disk1" in the Mac filesystem. Take the new drive, put it into its USB enclosure and plug it into the Mac SECOND; this drive will be "/dev/disk2". Other configurations MAY result in different device addresses (Apple's Disk Utility is your friend).

    Use "dd" to copy the drive. This took about 13 hours for a 40GB drive on my G4; be patient.

    Then use "mfstool add" to add the new, large partition.

    Unmount the drives with Disk Utility.

    Be warned, I couldn't get the command "mfstool restore" to work when I played with it, so save your backup file to a CD or something. Sorry, but this is the only thing I did and nothing else...any deviation from this would be speculation.

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