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Thread: Toshiba SD-H400 hard drive expansion - Support Thread

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    Toshiba SD-H400 hard drive expansion - Support Thread

    [Edit: 2004/10/16 --- Please see post #8 for a new PC side program that unlocks the SD-H400 capacity lock without requiring shell access on the TiVo.]

    This is a support thread for a hack that allows a Toshiba SD-H400 to be expanded beyond 80 hours. This is a bit more complicated than a normal Series 2 drive expansion, since the TiVo softare "locks" the capacity for this model at 80 hours. The purpose of this hack is to remove that lock.

    Like any hack, you're modifying the software that TiVo shipped on the box. That means it may not work forever. TiVo might install new software in the future that prevents this hack.

    More caveats: this is a relatively new hack. There might be unknown side effects. I've only been running it for a couple of days. Your TiVo could blow up. Don't blame me if it ends up as a doorstop.

    Prerequisites are that you have a SD-H400 and you've already done a mfstools expansion to a larger hard drive and have hacked it to the point where you have a bash prompt. The Hinsdale guide here has reasonable instructions for the former. For the latter, the information isn't quite so centralized, but everything you need to know is here on DDB. I recommend the "killhdinitrd" approach to bypassing the TiVo security checks, followed by a "monte" into the stock TiVo 5.1 kernel with the initrd replaced with "replace_initrd". Read the sticky threads in the Newbie Tivo forum. Search DDB for some of the terms above.


    Once you're past all these prerequisites, the rest is pretty trivial:

    The 80 hour constraint is imposed by an object in TiVo's media file system (MFS). The object is located at /Config/DiskConfigurations/Active. All we have to do is delete that object.

    From the bash prompt run /tvbin/tivosh. This should come back with a "%" prompt for the tcl shell. tivosh is just a tcl interpreter with extra TiVo commands, some to access MFS. For the curious, look in /tvlib/tcl/tv for some of the support libraries. mfslib.tcl has some of the MFS commands available.

    The first tivosh command to run is "mls /Config/DiskConfigurations". This will list the contents of this "directory" in MFS. You should see an object called "Active" and one other ("80Gig80HourJyounetsu"). They'll both have the same FsId. Make a note of that FsId. Mine was 5245, but it might be different on different boxes.

    The next command will delete that Active object: "RubbishObjectByFsId <FSID>" where <FSID> is the FsId you noted before.

    The "exit" command will get you out of tivosh and back to bash. Don't try cntrl-D; it seems to crash the tivo.

    Reboot, check the "System Information" screen again. Force a daily call, check again.

    At this point the 80 hour lock should be gone. Of course, it could come back after a software update, but like all hacks, you'll have to be prepared to do a little work when the software updates come in.

    Further technical details are in the developer thread here, Questions and results should be posted here, not in the developer thread.

    [Edit: ADH suggested an approach that might allow this hack to be applied entirely on the PC side, without requiring a bash prompt on the TiVo. This would make things a lot easier for those interested only in expanding the capacity, and not in any other hacks. I'm exploring this option and will keep this thread up to date with any progress. Life may be easier if you are willing to wait.]

    [Acknowledgements: this thread from MuscleNerd was key in leading me in the right direction for this hack. ADH's suggestions and additional information was also very helpful.]
    Last edited by Jamie; 10-16-2004 at 04:31 PM.

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    i hope someone else out there is as a newb to hacking Tivo's as I and is hoping for a guide on how to hack this particular Tivo

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    Quote Originally Posted by finger11
    i hope someone else out there is as a newb to hacking Tivo's as I and is hoping for a guide on how to hack this particular Tivo
    If you just want to expand capacity, your best bet will be to wait for a version that can be run on the PC side, right after an mfs restore. This would make it a very small tweak on the expansion instructions in the Hinsdale guide. It's also possible that it would be something that upgrade vendors might be willing to sell and support. I hope to find time to work on it next weekend. Patience, grasshopper.

    If you really want to hack (and not just expand the capacity of) your SD-H400. There are plenty of guides out there. You don't need one specific to this model.
    Last edited by Jamie; 10-12-2004 at 05:44 PM.

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    First off, thanks for everything you've done so far


    I would have no problem hacking into the Tivo, I love getting into all the settings and configurations in computers and such.

    It's just the guide you have linked seemed to branch off in different directions in terms of what you need to do to your particular Tivo and I wasn't sure which direction/option would be needed, as it is pretty hefty in length and I would assume all of it wouldn't be needed to be done to hack the Toshiba.

    Then again... I do not know.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rooobosmith
    Just did your hack and system now shows 152 hours available w/160GB disk.
    That sounds a bit too small to me. I forgotten the ratio, but don't you usually get more than one hour per GB? I'm guessing you ran mfstools from a linux system with a kernel that doesn't support lba48. That will limit you to 137GB. Not really a big deal, but if you want an extra 20-30 hours or so, you could do it again with an lba48 friendly version of mfstools. I believe ptvupgrade has an lba48 mfstools ISO available for download.

    The SD-H400 runs a kernel that supports lba48, so you don't have to do anything special on that end.

    I was a little worried when first "connect now" failed on configuration, but I did a "test connect" which succeeded, and then a second "connect now" which succeeded.
    My guess is that was just an unrelated fluke. Let's hope so .

    I started working on a version of the hack that can run on a PC after the mfs restore. The advantage of that is that is that you don't need a bash prompt on the tivo to apply the hack. This should make it more accessible to people who really just want to expand their capacity.

    It seems to be going pretty well. The main problem I have is that I don't have a spare disk to test with, and I'm not willing to risk my original. I might call for a volunteer who has a new disk they are ready to move to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jamie
    That sounds a bit too small to me. I forgotten the ratio, but don't you usually get more than one hour per GB? I'm guessing you ran mfstools from a linux system with a kernel that doesn't support lba48. That will limit you to 137GB. Not really a big deal, but if you want an extra 20-30 hours or so, you could do it again with an lba48 friendly version of mfstools. I believe ptvupgrade has an lba48 mfstools ISO available for download.

    The SD-H400 runs a kernel that supports lba48, so you don't have to do anything special on that end.


    My guess is that was just an unrelated fluke. Let's hope so .

    I started working on a version of the hack that can run on a PC after the mfs restore. The advantage of that is that is that you don't need a bash prompt on the tivo to apply the hack. This should make it more accessible to people who really just want to expand their capacity.

    It seems to be going pretty well. The main problem I have is that I don't have a spare disk to test with, and I'm not willing to risk my original. I might call for a volunteer who has a new disk they are ready to move to.
    Right you are. I did not use an lba48 disk. I thought since an 80GB disk yields 80 hours, 152 was not unreasonable for 160GB. Thanks for the reference to the lba48 iso. Here's the link to downloads:

    http://www.ptvupgrade.com/support/bigdisk/index.html

    I have two 160GB disks so I can keep one as a backup and experiment with the other. If you need anything done, I can help test it.
    rooobosmith
    monte'd Toshiba SD-H400
    expanded to 152 hours

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    I've split the offtopic posts to here.

    As these are quite popular units we expect that this thread will get a lot of traffic, so please ensure that anything that is not directly related to the SD-H400 drive expansion mod (including "me too" and other content-free posts) winds up somewhere else.

    Visitors from TCF, please keep in mind the fact that this is a technical forum.

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    Here's a binary only user package for a new PC side program to remove the SD-H400 capacity lock. I'll post a source package soon in the development thread after I've cleaned up a few loose ends. [Edit: It's here now.]

    The advantage of this program over the previously described method is that it runs entirely on the PC side. This means you don't have to hack the TiVo to get shell access in order to use it. It's just a program you run on the PC side after doing an mfstool restore expansion.

    Please see the included README for complete instructions. Please be sure to read and understand the Caveats section before using the tool.

    There is no need for "Thank you" or "works for me" posts in this thread. There is a thread in the Newbie forum (here) if you wish to post or read responses of that sort. Appropriate topics for this thread (or PM my privately) are README corrections, suggestions for improvements, or problems and issues with this specific tool. General questions and issues related to expansion (not sd-h400 specific) are more appropriate in the Newbie forum. The point of these posting guidelines is to keep this thread direct and to the point, to make it easier for future readers.

    [Edit: PTVupgrades now includes this utility in their lba48 boot CD iso (v3.01B), a free download available here.]
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Jamie; 10-17-2004 at 04:24 PM.

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    jamie and adh - once again, awesome work!

    my $64 question is: if this is run (or a manual mfs hack that does the same thing) on a non-space-locked machine (i.e. anything but the toshiba) and the id 11 value is changed from -1 to 10000000, will this zap the tivoclips to 10gb? i've got a 250gb system that has 17.6gb and a 160gb system that has 14.6gb (both hdvr2s on 3.1.1c) and as picky as it may sound, i'd love to liberate those extra gigs for shows.

    ronny

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronnythunder
    my $64 question is: if this is run (or a manual mfs hack that does the same thing) on a non-space-locked machine (i.e. anything but the toshiba) and the id 11 value is changed from -1 to 10000000, will this zap the tivoclips to 10gb? i've got a 250gb system that has 17.6gb and a 160gb system that has 14.6gb (both hdvr2s on 3.1.1c) and as picky as it may sound, i'd love to liberate those extra gigs for shows.
    The program can only modify the /Config/DiskConfigurations/Active object if it exists. If it doesn't exist, it can't write a new one. So I guess it depends on where the 17.6gb and 14.6gb allocations are coming from. Where did you get these numbers? From the /tmp/HServer.send file? Or do you see them when you browse MFS (say with TWP)? It the space allocation is coming from a /Config/DiskConfigurations/Active object, or some other DiskConfiguration object you know the path or fsid for, this program will let you change the sizes.

    My 2 drive 4.0.1b-02-2-240 machine with ~274GB of disk space doesn't have the object at all. The /tmp/HServer.send file shows IDB_MFS_TOTCLIPS: 100000000. TWP shows 9524MB of "Reserved Space" on the info page. This is consistent with the values from the table in tivoapp rodata.
    Last edited by Jamie; 10-17-2004 at 01:52 AM.

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    my 250gb hdvr2 shows IDB_MFS_TOTCLIPS: 23804683 in hserver.send. the twp reserved space is 17655mb. i do have a diskconfigurations object:
    Code:
    % dumpobj -depth 2 33
    DiskConfiguration 33/11 {
      Active         = 1
      DiskPartitions = 33/12 33/13 33/14
        DiskPartition 33/12 {
          Id             = 12
          SizeInKb       = 102400
        }
        DiskPartition 33/13 {
          Id             = 11
          SizeInKb       = -1
        }
        DiskPartition 33/14 {
          Id             = 10
          SizeInKb       = 35191000
        }
      Id             = 30HourLCT40Combo
      IndexPath      = /Config/DiskConfigurations/30HourLCT40Combo /Config/DiskConfigurations/Active /Server/4178108
      MaxDiskSize    = 38700000
      MinDiskSize    = 37000000
      ServerId       = 4178108
      ServerVersion  = 1
      Version        = 2
    }
    the 160gb unit curiously doesn't have a hserver.send; wonder why?

    what do you think?

    ronny

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronnythunder
    my 250gb hdvr2 shows IDB_MFS_TOTCLIPS: 23804683 in hserver.send. the twp reserved space is 17655mb. i do have a diskconfigurations object:...
    It looks to me like that DiskConfiguration object would limit the User size to ~ 35GB. Makes me think the object isn't actually being used to set space allocations with your software version. You could try running the program to modify it, but I'd make sure everything you care about is backed up first. Or try it first on a scratch disk.
    Quote Originally Posted by ronnythunder
    the 160gb unit curiously doesn't have a hserver.send; wonder why?
    I think that file is a temp file created when doing a daily call. Perhaps /tmp was cleared since the last daily call. Try forcing a daily call and see if it shows up after that.

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    so perhaps it's the hardcoded table in tivoapp that's guiding things? i might try to tinker with the mfs object, but i've got to be careful because these are my "production" machines i'd be in the doghouse if something happened!

    ronny

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    sorry to bump the thread, but... jamie, a look through the code (well, as much as i could with my eyes uncrossed ) seems to indicate that the only things you're changing in the mfs object is the clips and user sizes.

    did i miss where it was changing the min and max sizes for the total area?

    ronny

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronnythunder
    sorry to bump the thread, but... jamie, a look through the code (well, as much as i could with my eyes uncrossed ) seems to indicate that the only things you're changing in the mfs object is the clips and user sizes.

    did i miss where it was changing the min and max sizes for the total area?

    ronny
    Nope, you didn't miss it. I'm not changing those. The 5.1.1b software didn't seem to care, but as we've seen elsewhere, other software versions might.

    I can alter it to change those too. What should I use for defaults? min 40G max 1TB?

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