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Thread: Updated Info DirecTivo, USB Networking, PROM, Versions, Etc

  1. #1
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    Sep 2003
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    Updated Info DirecTivo, USB Networking, PROM, Versions, Etc

    I have taken some time to read and research and try and learn something before asking. Many of my original questions were answered, but many more were raised.

    If there is an updated HowTo that handles the current version of DirectTTivo then please point me to it.

    Here are the questions:
    1 - What version of Tivo would a system bought in Summer 2003 likely have? 3.0? I have seen posts about having to downgrade to "U5" or something. I believe there is an issue with TIVO wiping out the bash shell in later version, but I don't know which.

    I have been following this article, but it was written so long ago and part way through the forums people start complaining that things no longer work. http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...threadid=90268

    2 - Does DirectTV TIVO support USB networking? I have seen both answers. Are there any good articles about getting networking working using a USB?

    3 - Why are people going through the troubles of connecting via serial cable? If you can get your NIC working without those steps, I don't see what value it adds?

    4 - Do the later TIVO's require you to hack the PROM (programable ROM?)?
    Thanks...
    Last edited by robinmthomas; 09-27-2003 at 02:52 AM.

  2. #2
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  3. #3
    Join Date
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    1. Check the System Information screen for the OS version on the DTivo.

    2. Not out of the box. The unit must be hacked to set up bash and install the necessary drivers to support USB networking.

    3. You need the serial connection to install the drivers and set up the DTivo to be able to communicate via telnet and ftp. You have to first set up a bash prompt with the Tivo drive in your PC. Once you have bash, you can reinstall the drive in the Tivo and then communicate with it directly via serial connection. Using the serial connection, you can set up the appropriate commands and load the USB drivers at bootup to enable network communication.

    4. Yes and no. The P{ROM is not in-line flashable like the series 1 models. You have to physically remove the PROM chip and program it manually and is a task not suited for the faint of heart. Kraven will do the mod for you and reinstall the PROM chip in a socket. You will have to send him your mainboard from the DTivo to have this done. I have no idea what he charges for this service. Send him a PM for info.

    I would suggest checking out the hacking method outlined in cobelli's guide referenced in the 2nd link posted by metrotech. The hardest part about doing the upgrade is making sure you have typed in everything EXACTLY as indicated. Read through the entire thread before you attempt it because the guide still has a few errors in it and you'll need to know where they are before trying the hack. Once you've mastered that method then you might want to consider trying the two-card monte hack.
    Please don't PM me or any other members looking for personal assistance. You'll do better by posting (after you've exhausted the search feature, of course) and taking advantage of the collective expertise of the membership instead of a single individual that may or may not be able to help you. Thank you and enjoy your stay at DDB!

  4. #4
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    Sep 2003
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    Awesome! Thanks for answering all my questions.

    Two-card monte hack??? Sounds exciting!
    From what I have read, there are 3 types of hacks:
    1 - Bash Shell Hack which requires downgrading to the right version of TIVO
    2 - PROM which requires the work you listed
    3 - Two-Card Monte Hack which I know nothing about


    Is it easier? Does it allow more functionality? What can you achive with the monte hack you can't achieve with the Bash shell hack.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2002
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    With method (1), you are forced into TiVo software version 3.1. You can never use your hacks with later versions -- not that any have even been released yet. But if they ever are released, method (1) won't work with them.

    Methods (2) and (3) will let you use your hacks with later software versions. This is most useful for standalone S2's now, because they're at 4.0.1.
    Last edited by MuscleNerd; 09-27-2003 at 06:10 PM.

  6. #6
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    Originally posted by robinmthomas

    1 - Bash Shell Hack which requires downgrading to the right version of TIVO
    This is sometimes referred to the "Userland" kernel hack or U5 kernel. The kernel is the exact same kernel as the one that currently ships with the DTivo. The only difference is the initrd. The kernel is really the same kernel.

    Start with the first hack. The steps are necessary to master before performing the other(s).

  7. #7
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    Sep 2003
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    Ok, cool - That makes sense.

    Can you one give me a super-high level view of what the "Two-Card Monte Hack"?

    Don't give details, but what can I expect to have to do to acomplish this?

    It sounds like there is no reason to do #2 or #3 now (at least for DirectTivos), but that in the future there may be a hack or new toy which requires a later version of TIVO
    Last edited by robinmthomas; 09-27-2003 at 06:31 PM.

  8. #8
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    Originally posted by robinmthomas
    Ok, cool - That makes sense.

    Can you one give me a super-high level view of what the "Two-Card Monte Hack"?
    Actually , MuscleNerd is better versed AND all the info you need is in the forum.

    Since I'm in a really good mood - going into NYC tonight to see the Steve Kimock Band, I will give it a shot.

    monte first relies on the U5/Userland kernel. The tivo boot the U5 kernel, and before the Tivo is completely booted, the kernel is swapped with a really good timing kernel.

    So practice up on the U5 kernel, BACKUP, BACKUP and BACKUP when you get it working. Then go for Monte.

    Good Luck!

  9. #9
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    Sep 2003
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    That's exactly the level of detail I was looking for ...
    Wow! That sounds pretty slick....

    I'll search the forum for the HowTos....

  10. #10
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    Originally posted by Sleeper
    Start with the first hack. The steps are necessary to master before performing the other(s).
    Not true. Hack #2, PROM modification, allows the user to kill the initrd (voiding the ElGamal signature) and then modify the root filesystem in any way desired. The BASH_ENV hack is not necessary in this case as rc.sysinit, /sbin/init, boot299.btl, and anything else may be changed freely.

    Aren't you supposed to wait until you arrive at the concert before you get high?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
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    Originally posted by David Bought
    Aren't you supposed to wait until you arrive at the concert before you get high?
    Not necessarily!

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