What's Wrong With My Series 2 Tivo?

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by sw10025, Oct 30, 2011.

  1. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    May 16, 2000
    Los...
    Hi guys, I still have my series 2 Tivos lo these many years later, and one of them started acting up last night, and I'm thinking I may have to do my own repair (unemployed, can't afford to upgrade). Had no problems with the machine until last night, but for the moment, it seems to be working properly, which makes me wonder if the likely problem isn't the power supply. But I'd like to consult with people who know Tivo / computer inner workings better than I do. (Its a Phillips, if that makes any difference.)

    OK, unit had been working fine until last night, absolutely no warnings prior to the problem. I was recording one channel while I was replaying another. The recording I was watching had a tiny blip interruption which I thought might be just a bad pixel or a problem from the station I had recorded (Dish Network is my programming source, in case that makes any difference). After brief interruption, it started again. Then it stopped again, screen went black, it started again, stopped again, and this time the screen either appeared paused or went black, I don't remember which. The recording didn't come back on. I tried the remote to get it going again, FF through the problem, didn't work, replaced the batteries in case that was the problem, unit still wasn't responding to the remote control. I didn't want to reboot it yet because it was in the middle of recording another program, so I decided to wait until the program was finished and reboot it then.

    Well, the machine decided on its own to reboot itself. It did save the portion of the program it had recorded up until that point and did resume the recording after it started, but it kept sticking, over and over again. It would stick on the menu screen, then after a few minutes it worked again, stuck during playback, freezing. So I rebooted it a couple more times. Still kept having repeated problems during playback, and it spontaneously rebooted itself once or twice more on its own, but it was getting late, so I left the recordings set on it and went to bed.

    During the course of the night, it recorded the first program OK, the second program was missing the first ten minutes or so, and since it was a repeat recording that I know the times were correct on, it means the machine must have either rebooted on its own before the recording started, or at the start of the recording, and it lost the first ten minutes or so.

    Anyone have any idea what the likely problem is? Money is tight, so I'm likely going to have to attempt the repair myself, but I don't want to risk the machine dying and not being able to be recoverable, so I'd prefer to try to repair it before something catastrophic happens. I can't reach where the electrical plug is plugged in to the wall, so in order to force some of those reboots I had to physically move the machine and pull the plug out of the back of it, so I'm wondering if the power supply is loose or failing, and moving the unit around temporarily resolved the problem...

    Thanks in advance for any advice you have...!
     
  2. scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    Can't help you with the problem, but fyi, if it's a Philips, it isn't a S2 it's a S1.
     
  3. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    You're right, I accidentally looked at the Serial 1 sitting on the shelf underneath it. Its definitely a Serial 2.
     
  4. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    John's...
    This definitely sounds like the drive is going bad.
     
  5. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    As in the hard drive? Well, I suppose that's good news in a way, I've replaced a computer hard drive before, I don't think it should be that much more difficult than a PC hard drive, right?
     
  6. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

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    Well, you can't just swap the hard drive. If you want to DIY, you will have to find an image of the TiVo software specific to your model (or get InstantCake), and load it onto the new hard drive before you install it in the Tivo.

    You can buy pre-loaded hard drives from DVR Dude on e-bay or from Weaknees.
     
  7. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    John's...
    Seeing as how the TiVo is still functioning, the problem is probably currently limited to the data areas and he should be able to image a replacement drive from the current drive.

    Since it is a TiVo 2, he is going to need either a PATA drive or an adapter such as this one.
     
  8. lillevig

    lillevig Cold in East Iowa

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    Marion, Iowa
    What model Tivo is it? There is an entire thread dedicated to instructions for imaging your own new drive as well as for requesting images to do so. The software for doing it is a free download (check out MFSLive website for Linux or Windows versions). What you would need is either the willingness to crack open your PC and swap drives or a less than $10 USB to SATA/IDE adapter cable, and an appropriate hard drive at least as big as the one in your Tivo. You can still buy some IDE drives on eBay, otherwise you would need an appropriate IDE/SATA adapter as pointed out by an earlier poster. It's not a hard process if you have all of the necessary components.
     
  9. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    I should have been more specific. What I was planning on doing was purchasing an "upgrade" kit from Weaknees. Its already formatted and prepared, if I understand correctly, so I just have to do the install, is that correct?
     
  10. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    Correct. Then redo guided setup and recreate all of our season passes.
     
  11. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    Wow, there's a huge price difference between weaknees and DVR_Dude (eBay) for my model. I assume someone here can recommend DVR_Dude since he was mentioned? He seems to have great feedback, but its always good to ask, and I trust the folks here more than general ebay feedback.

    And again, thanks to everyone who answered!
     
  12. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

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    I haven't used DVR Dude myself, but I have read of many people here buying from him with no problems.
     
  13. True Colors

    True Colors Member

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    I would only use weaknees as a last resort. Their prices are outrageous.

    TC
     
  14. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    Yes, I ended up buying from DVR_Dude because I could replace hard drives on BOTH my series 2s for the same price a single one would have cost me at Weaknees...thanks again to the person who mentioned DVR_Dude, I wasn't aware of him, only weaknees, and that mention saved me LOTS of money.

    Thanks again for all your help!
     
  15. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    Doing it yourself would have save a lot more.
     
  16. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    Undoubtedly so, but my computer hardware/software skills are limited, to put it mildly, I felt more comfortable just doing the install, without having to worry about picking the right hard disk, format the hard drives, do the imaging, I think there's some partitioning involved, I'd have to figure out and procure the installation tools, and I don't have anyone to help me if I mess up. (I could always ask here, but there's a limit to my ability to figure out what I've messed up or what the problem is, to communicate the problem with the appropriate technical language, and to comprehend and implement solutions offered.) I tried to take a PC repair class at the local community college last semester, but unfortunately, I developed flu and bronchitis the week after classes started and I had to drop out. So I felt more comfortable going with the option I knew I could manage with a minimum risk of screwing up, and I'm still ahead of 99.5% of the population, which wouldn't have dreamed of even cracking the unit open...
     
  17. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    I think you underrate your abilities and potential, but, if you found a solution that works for you at a price with which you can live, I shall be nothing but happy for you.
     
  18. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    Thank you for your confidence in my potential. I believe that given enough time to do the proper research so I bought the right hard drive and figure out how to do it, and a wee bit of luck, I could do as you suggested. Eventually, I'm going to become much better at this computer stuff.

    But right now, with a failing hard drive that has some content I'd like to save and transfer (I'm going to temporarily transfer it to the old hard drive on the other Series 2, then back to the new hard drive once I've installed it and made sure it works OK, all using my cable modem internet connection), and the fact that in the past ten days, I've had my food processor break, my last working DVD Recorder break, and one of my Tivos start to fail, it seems prudent to not tempt fate and to hurry up and save what I can before the HD fails completely. :D
     
  19. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    Are you going to be using TiVo Desktop to act as intermediary?

    That will preserve a lot more of the meta-data (stuff like date originally recorded and other things) than a straight TiVo to TiVo transfer.
     
  20. sw10025

    sw10025 Active Member

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    I have to confess I was a very early adopter (see my join date), but I'm now woefully behind on all things Tivo. I didn't even know "Tivo Desktop" existed. I checked into it after you mentioned it, downloaded it, and I'm now transferring content to my PC. Thanks!
     

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