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I understand this is pure conspiracy theory, but you never know...

I was on TE4 for a few weeks and I had a series of hardware failures / replacement cycles with my Bolts using a particular model of hard drive. The hardware failure would occur during power down/power up and the lights indicating it was a SATA port failure on each failure. I went through 3-4 Bolts in a couple of months. In each case I tried multiple drives, including the original drive, to try to recover the failed Bolt, but the SATA port was fried in each case. I first thought it was just bad luck with the hardware, then I thought it was a bad power supply (TiVO replaced), I then suspected it might have been the drive and switched to a different hard drive but same model. Right after the final Tivo replacement and one last drive replacements, Tivo started failing to detect the drive from boot after a software upgrade, not the normal hardware failure. Then after consulting the forum I saw others started to see the same TE4 upgrade affecting boot up with certain drives. I reverted back to TE3 and found the drive was still working yet would then not boot each time I returned to TE4.

It could be bad luck on my part, but I suspect Tivo found a condition where there is an electrical failure during the TE4 boot up sequence with certain drives once they examined all my returned hardware. Also, within a month or two TiVo started blocking almost every drive model I was using. Each exhibited the same issue of working on TE3 but not TE4.

Also... these drives were working on TE3 for over a year. The Bolt hardware failures only started when I initially upgraded to TE4.
 

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I thought I'd check if the BCM7445 (I'm assuming this is the Bolt processor used based on other threads) had any known SATA issues and there are several threads about PHY related issues when multiple PHY are used or when using 3rd party PHY. These threads didn't really seem pertinent, but I thought I'd give an update on what I've found. There are probably more open source discussions on Broadcom SATA support and issues seen, but I'm not sure where to check.
 
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