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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So as you know, Series 1-3 (and formerly Series 4) TiVos use MPEG-2 videos for the background UI and startup videos. I want to know if anyone knows the best way to extract those from the MFS partition, so that a "clean" rip of them can be made? The graphics from the user interface would be fun to rip as well.

I was messing around with these because it's fun. I actually managed to extract a lot of the videos, but it was painstaking. What I basically did was take the WinMFS truncated images I have of the TiVos, and used a terrible Python script I made to cut out the parts of the file that start with what appears to be a MPEG-2 sequence. Then, convert all of the clips to MP4 with ffmpeg. And then filter out all the video parts that appear to be corrupted, and then merge all the remaining clips into one video. This worked best with the Series 1/Early Series 2 and Series 3 interfaces, but I couldn't get the Series 2 ones extracted nicely (but they seem to be in the Series 3 images). I couldn't get the startup videos extracted at all without being massively corrupted. File Juicer, a macOS tool, does not support MPEG-2.

Throwing the raw restore image at Mpg2Cut2 will also result in a corrupt video, but I used it as a base. VLC does the same thing, although throwing the raw restore image at that will play the startup intro audio.

Is there a way to just extract the files from the MFS partition as they are? I couldn't find any tools to do it. I couldn't even figure out if I could do it with the MFS Tools Linux image.

Here's what I got:

Series 1/Early Series 2:


Series 2 (mostly corrupted):


Series 2 DirecTV:


Series 3 (HD):


Series 4: I don't have it, as TiVo removed the startup intro and changed all instances of the TiVo logo to be the "Silhouette" type (forgot the actual name of it, would be nice if they changed it to be the brand new logo).

Thanks.
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Also, did you know that, apparently, the Series 1 startup intro was made by Pittard Sullivan, and the Series 2 startup intro was made by Mondo Media?
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
By the way, I made these YouTube playlists that mostly satisfy what I said in the OP.


 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Also, what is that Python tool called and where can I download it? I'm highly interested in extracting videos and UIs just like you are doing.
Check out what I sent above.

The MFS partition format that the TiVo uses and stores this stuff in is a pain in the butt, and 20+ years later it's still not fully understood.
 

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Cuteness and retro mascots, oh my!
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I'm not sure about the Series 3.
I know the TiVo HD long intro video was done by SFEdit, Corvid Films, and Big Pixels (three small, private production companies in San Francisco). I don't even know if they are still around, but I'll have to look more in-depth to find if they also produced the Series3 intro video with the THX logo.
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I know the TiVo HD long intro video was done by SFEdit, Corvid Films, and Big Pixels (three small, private production companies in San Francisco). I don't even know if they are still around, but I'll have to look more in-depth to find if they also produced the Series3 intro video with the THX logo.
Wow, where did you find that information? I've been searching.

The TiVo Premiere intro was made by a company named Brand New School.
 

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Cuteness and retro mascots, oh my!
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I found this information from an old article on Blackmagic's blog about the first studio mentioned (SFEdit). For the other two, I discovered part of the intro hidden in demo reels.
I know many other things, too. Today I just found out the filming location was at a house in Lafayette, California (a small town just minutes from Oakland). Nobody online mentioned this, so that's why it took me years (you heard me, YEARS) to finally get that specific information.
 

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Cuteness and retro mascots, oh my!
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I know many other things, too. Today I just found out the filming location was at a house in Lafayette, California (a small town just minutes from Oakland). Nobody online mentioned this, so that's why it took me years (you heard me, YEARS) to finally get that specific information.
Here's how I managed to geolocate the video:

1. I took a screenshot of the house's exterior from my phone.
2. I used Google Lens to find similar images.
3. It retrieved one image that looked almost exactly like the one I took.
4. I clicked on the image, and it redirected me to a real estate website. That's where I found it was in Lafayette.

I even picked up the exact address. How? By examining a TiVo demo video about Amazon Unbox (long defunct) closely on YouTube.

If you look closely, in the first few seconds, there is a mailbox that has the number 3933 on it. I later looked up addresses in Lafayette that start with 3933 and stumbled upon this particular one in general.
 

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Cuteness and retro mascots, oh my!
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Here's how I managed to geolocate the video:

1. I took a screenshot of the house's exterior from my phone.
2. I used Google Lens to find similar images.
3. It retrieved one image that looked almost exactly like the one I took.
4. I clicked on the image, and it redirected me to a real estate website. That's where I found it was in Lafayette.

I even picked up the exact address. How? By examining a TiVo demo video about Amazon Unbox (long defunct) closely on YouTube.

If you look closely, in the first few seconds, there is a mailbox that has the number 3933 on it. I later looked up addresses in Lafayette that start with 3933 and stumbled upon this particular one in general.
Look it up. It's 3933 N Peardale Dr.
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Here's how I managed to geolocate the video:

1. I took a screenshot of the house's exterior from my phone.
2. I used Google Lens to find similar images.
3. It retrieved one image that looked almost exactly like the one I took.
4. I clicked on the image, and it redirected me to a real estate website. That's where I found it was in Lafayette.

I even picked up the exact address. How? By examining a TiVo demo video about Amazon Unbox (long defunct) closely on YouTube.

If you look closely, in the first few seconds, there is a mailbox that has the number 3933 on it. I later looked up addresses in Lafayette that start with 3933 and stumbled upon this particular one in general.
Good job, detective!
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
@brycepowell I'm pretty impressed you were able to find that house.

Have any other interesting information? There's an Australian TiVo startup video as well, but I have no idea who made it. (It's the longest startup intro by far, and it feels more like a commercial)

You probably know this, but the woman who was in most of the TiVo videos is named Shanan Carney, who left TiVo in 2010.
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
By the way, I managed to extract the animated backgrounds by taking the TiVo restore images and running them through a tool called Mpeg2cut2. Because of the nature of the MFS format, many of the videos (especially the startup intro) appear pretty teary and messed up. But that YouTube playlist has the best I could do.

Animated backgrounds are officially called "loopsets".
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Another thing - I managed to get a lot of TiVo menu assets (Series 3) by installing and looking through the Nero LiquidTV software (basically TiVo for your PC, it doesn't work anymore though)

All the assets are in PNG form so they're easy to look through.

I have the Nero LiquidTV ISO, but if you want the PNGs:

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/858486776129126410/865057757131833374/4x3.zip

There also are sounds too.
 

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Ambassador to the City of Chicago
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727 Posts
Another thing - I managed to get a lot of TiVo menu assets (Series 3) by installing and looking through the Nero LiquidTV software (basically TiVo for your PC, it doesn't work anymore though)

All the assets are in PNG form so they're easy to look through.

The Nero LiquidTV ISO is in my TiVo Restore Image Archive, but if you want the PNGs:

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/858486776129126410/865057757131833374/4x3.zip

There also are sounds too.
Found this excellent name in the ZIP file - looks like the select effect used when you move up and down through the icons on the full channel banner (dolby, etc)
Font Electric blue Rectangle Newspaper Parallel


Update: Looking around more, looks like "Wiener" is used to describe just about every instance of those little selectors
 

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TiVo Lover
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Found this excellent name in the ZIP file - looks like the select effect used when you move up and down through the icons on the full channel banner (dolby, etc) View attachment 61414

Update: Looking around more, looks like "Wiener" is used to describe just about every instance of those little selectors
new background
 

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TiVo Lover
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274 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Another thing - I managed to get a lot of TiVo menu assets (Series 3) by installing and looking through the Nero LiquidTV software (basically TiVo for your PC, it doesn't work anymore though)

All the assets are in PNG form so they're easy to look through.

I have the Nero LiquidTV ISO, but if you want the PNGs:

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/858486776129126410/865057757131833374/4x3.zip

There also are sounds too.
@ggieseke Knowing you dove into looking at TiVo's assets when writing DvrBARS, I just thought you'd be interested in these TiVo graphic and sound assets contained in Nero LiquidTV? :)
 
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