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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Got a message on one of the HD programs that it couldn't be copied to DVD etc. But that same program recorded on Comcast's DVR has no such message, and in fact can be copied. Not sure I understand how Tivo's copy protection works...
 

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What was the program?
When was the message?
How were you trying to copy it to DVD from the Comcast box?
 

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opus472 said:
Got a message on one of the HD programs that it couldn't be copied to DVD etc. But that same program recorded on Comcast's DVR has no such message, and in fact can be copied. Not sure I understand how Tivo's copy protection works...
Assuming you have CableCARDs... The message is set based on a value encoded in the transmission call the CCI. You can see what value is being sent on a given channel by tuning to that channel then visiting the Diagnostics screen. Without going into details about the value, 0x00 means it is unprotected, anything else means it is limited in some way.

In theory, Comcast has a company-wide policy of setting the CCI to 0x00 unless specifically requested by the content provider to do otherwise. I don't know if the rollout of that is complete... I know they arrived at the decision early in the year. I also know that content providers like HBO are paranoid about their programming while others, like Discovery, have specific times they want you to be recording their programming for use the in the classroom.

You can call Comcast and ask them why the content is protected -- obviously, first-line support is not going to be able to help you. I went through my local franchise authority when I realized what was going on and about 4 weeks later, after a lot of emailing back-and-forth, a regional engineer told me about Comcast's policy change. A week later, the CCI values on all channels in my lineup (I don't get HBO) went to 0x00.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Assuming you have CableCARDs... The message is set based on a value encoded in the transmission call the CCI. You can see what value is being sent on a given channel by tuning to that channel then visiting the Diagnostics screen. Without going into details about the value, 0x00 means it is unprotected, anything else means it is limited in some way.
In theory, Comcast has a company-wide policy of setting the CCI to 0x00 unless specifically requested by the content provider to do otherwise.
Looks like all the Comcast premium channels are coded 0x02. Might be worth a phone call?
 

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I've had no such luck with Cox here in San Diego. Everything is protected except for broadcast, which is absurd because Family Guy in High Def is unprotected, but on Cartoon Network it's protected.
 

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When you're copying from the Comcast DVR, are you sending it via firewire or the analog s-video/composite/component outputs? If via firewire, restricted content (i.e. CCI=0x02) can still be "copied" to a HDCP compliant D-VHS VCR but not to a PC. There are no such restrictions on the analog output.

Perhaps TiVo has some kind of verification gate to protect them from potential lawsuits on restricted content. If so, you should still be able to make a "copy" from the analog outputs by simply playing the program - unless TiVo outputs with Macrovision added, in which case an intermediate clarifier would be needed.
 

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there's no such thing as an 'hdcp compliant d-vhs vcr'.
With all due respect, I don't believe your claim is correct. My JVC 40k D-VHS VCR is HDCP compliant, as are several I was looking at before I bought mine. I can record Hi-Def programming that is flagged CCI=0x02 onto DVHS tape via firewire and yet not be able to capture that content to a PC. Isn't that what HDCP is about? Or am I confusing it for something else?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
When you're copying from the Comcast DVR, are you sending it via firewire or the analog s-video/composite/component outputs?
Haven't tried to copy it, I was assuming the CP message meant I wouldn't be able to. Never got that message when using Comcast's DVR, and had no trouble copying to DVD over s-video while the program was playing. Maybe it's the same situation with Tivo, in spite of the CP message. I'll give it a shot, see what happens...
 

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With all due respect, I don't believe your claim is correct. My JVC 40k D-VHS VCR is HDCP compliant, as are several I was looking at before I bought mine. I can record Hi-Def programming that is flagged CCI=0x02 onto DVHS tape via firewire and yet not be able to capture that content to a PC. Isn't that what HDCP is about? Or am I confusing it for something else?
I think you mean DTCP.
 

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I'm a newbie. I have an mkv file (4+gb) that I downloaded from internet (a BBC concert) and have no idea how to view it. I figured that I could use Desktop to transfer it to TiVo, but apparently I need Plus to copy to TiVo. Ok, but I see mention of mp4, .m4v, .mp4v, but no mkv.

Assuming I buy Desktop Plus, can I watch mkv files on TiVo?
 

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In theory, Comcast has a company-wide policy of setting the CCI to 0x00 unless specifically requested by the content provider to do otherwise. I don't know if the rollout of that is complete... I know they arrived at the decision early in the year. I also know that content providers like HBO are paranoid about their programming while others, like Discovery, have specific times they want you to be recording their programming for use the in the classroom.

You can call Comcast and ask them why the content is protected -- obviously, first-line support is not going to be able to help you. I went through my local franchise authority when I realized what was going on and about 4 weeks later, after a lot of emailing back-and-forth, a regional engineer told me about Comcast's policy change. A week later, the CCI values on all channels in my lineup (I don't get HBO) went to 0x00.
Do you have any confirmation of this policy other than what a regional engineer told you? When I call my local Comcast to complain where do I point them to prove that they are not complying with their company-wide policy?
 

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I'm a newbie. I have an mkv file (4+gb) that I downloaded from internet (a BBC concert) and have no idea how to view it. I figured that I could use Desktop to transfer it to TiVo, but apparently I need Plus to copy to TiVo. Ok, but I see mention of mp4, .m4v, .mp4v, but no mkv.
I do this fairly regularly using pyTiVo; it uses ffmpeg to do the necessary format conversion work, outputting a properly formatted MPEG-2 stream which the TiVo can then play. It works on Linux, most any other free UNIX (as long as ffmpeg is available on it), Mac OS X, and supposedly Windows as well. It requires a bit of reading to set up if you're not fluent at the command line, but it works exceedingly well.
 
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