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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hopefully a quick one :)

A few months ago I replaced the two discs in my Tivo with Samsung 7200rpm 160Gb units. This evening one of my recordings started to dissolve into the tell-tale mess of MPEG macroblocks, so it looks as though one of them has suffered a premature death.

Is there a Samsung utility to scan the disc and find out which one has failed?

I bought the discs from PC World, who are currently out of stock of that model. Has anyone had experience of dealing direct with Samsung? Am I right in expecting the worst from a call centre? :( Can I get an advance replacement so I can clone the old disc onto a new one?

Thanks,
Andy
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
6022tivo said:
"tell-tale mess of MPEG macroblocks"

Sign of the LBA patch not being applied properly on a <137GB Disk Maybe???

I could be wrong, and often am.
I'd be surprised; the machine has worked fine for several months, and I did spend quite a long time and care over the installation. (See my thread which turned into more of an on-line diary of woe at the time here!)

The symptom is, on one recording only (so far):
- sound is fine
- video plays continuously with no stuttering or freeze-up
- every 20 seconds or so, part of the picture becomes corrupted, and remains a mess of blocks until (presumably) the next I-frame refreshes the whole screen.

I'd have thought that if there were a problem with disc addressing, it would get to some point in the recording and then suddenly freeze or start playing from a different recording entirely. The symptoms look to me more like a series of momentary drop-outs in the video stream, consistent with an area of bad sectors on one of the discs.

Thanks for the advice about Samsung RMAs, if it gets any worse then I'll dismantle the machine and swap them out. Seems like an awfully short lifespan for a new drive, though - is it normal for a TiVo to 'eat' discs like this? My unit is in a cupboard behind a door, but the back of the machine is open to the air so I'd be surprised if it were getting unusually hot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
blindlemon said:
However, if you're up for a bit of down-n-dirty drive hacking, this howto appears to have the lowdown on forcing a sector reallocation.
Mmmm... thanks, but if it's all the same to you, I'll spend the time sticking forks in my eyes instead :up:

If it's just a sector or two, I think I'll leave it. I have a backup of the TiVo software, a DVD recorder to back up the recordings I want to keep, and the drives have a 3 year warranty - so there's no hurry.

Thanks for the assistance :)
Andy
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
LampyDave said:
I've kept the new drive which I had to buy as a spare. It was fairly easy (after a lot of reading here) to use dd_rescue to clone the drive but I understand that it's much more difficult if the geometry of the fresh drive is different. As drive models are replaced you may not be able to get another exactly the same if another one dies in a year or two.
Maybe in fact the easiest thing to do is take the faulty drive out completely, and just have a 160Gb Tivo. Now I have DVD-R as well, all the recordings I want to keep are on disc anyway, so I don't mind about losing the recordings that are currently on the Tivo, nor do I need such a huge capacity.
 
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