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Thread: hdvr2 reboot taking days

  1. #1
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    hdvr2 reboot taking days

    I have a problem and have not even found references to, or I am just not using the right search terms. I appreciate any help, I have searched a lot and not got much to show for it. I need your help.

    Here is what I have, 2 direct tivos (account OK) Hdvr2 running 4.0.1b – I know, it is an old version of the tivo software. It has the combination of features that work for me and I have no serious complaints about the feature set. Ok, daylight savings time is annoying twice a year, I manage.

    The problem of late is when a extended power outage occurs (on ups for short outages) or a random reboot occurs, I get the acquiring satellite data screen which has now gotten to the point of 3 plus days to finish. One of the direct tivos will allow me ( for the moment ) to hit the top remote button, on my remotes which is labeled “directv” and get to the menus and use the DVR. It works fine and gets programming data, records season passes, plays shows, etc.
    The other direct tivo will NOT respond to the “directv” button and I can only go through the acquiring satellite data, as this now takes multiple days (at 99.5 hours as I type this) it is a major hassle.

    My first though was problems with common items – dish alignment, LNB, multiswitch. I looked at the transponder levels and compared them to was they were in the past. I get all transponders on the 3 satellites my dish sees are at the same levels I have had historically. Signal strength is at high 80's to 100. For the heck of it I swapped the LNB as I had a spare. It made no difference to signal strength. I took out the multiswitch, as I got this planning to subscribe a 3rd direct tivo soon. That did not make a difference either.
    My second though was hard drive related, I put in the previous drive (upgraded for size reasons, removed in fine working order) and it still makes no difference.

    One thing I found in searching was people having problems with local channel reception with older versions of software. I am not having this issue.

    I do use MRV quite a bit and have read that if I end up at at 6.4A I will loose MRV. To that end I hope to preserve MRV by using 6.2A. Would like to know if 6.2A provides all expected functions and works or if there are currently issues with it, or if 6.4A is a must to get these dvr's working properly. I would very much like to hear from anyone that currently or recently has had this problem and resolved it and how they resolved it.

    I really like the tivo interface and have stayed at standard definition as the current directv dvr's are not tivos. HD is just not a priority for me, and I much prefer to keep these working. Having the boot time change from 5 minutes to several days it trying my patience.

    Assistance gratefully accepted

  2. #2
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    6.2a has folders and mrv, but that train has reached the end of the line. One of the updates in 6.4a is to allow for a change in the guide data. That change happened recently, and as a result, units that have not been updated to 6.4a have begun to loose channels, mostly locals. When my affected units would boot up, acquiring satellite info screen took approximately 2-3x longer than normal (perceived time, did not clock it with a watch). It ended with an error that (paraphrasing here) that data could not be found for all channels. Upon return to live tv, most local channels no longer appeared in the guide, and were not tuneable.

    The date of onset of this condition has varied from one market to the next, but there have been no reports of a 6.2a unit regaining its lost channels. It is likely 6.4a will be the only fix for this problem.

    While you say you are not having problems with local channel reception, what was the timing of the onset of your problem, relative to the time other 6.2a tivos in your local market began loosing channels? It is possible the same problem (changes in guide data format) is exhibiting itself in a different manner with your software version.

    Just an idea...
    They say beer will make me dumb. It are go good with pizza!-----------
    3XR10, prommed, 3xdvr40,4xdvr39, all networked, ranging from 40GB to 750GB

  3. #3
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    This does make me wonder if anyone, anywhere, has made any attempts to run SA Tivo software newer than 6.2a on a DTivo...[/wishful_thinking]
    They say beer will make me dumb. It are go good with pizza!-----------
    3XR10, prommed, 3xdvr40,4xdvr39, all networked, ranging from 40GB to 750GB

  4. #4
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    Why would you want to run SA TiVo software? The DirecTiVos have no MPEG encoder or analog inputs, so there's really no use without the DirecTV software.

    If you only want it as a MRV box, I imagine acquiring a used S2 box off eBay and hacking it is much easier than fiddling with SA software on a DTiVo.

    AFAICT, the last research on the subject stopped some time ago:
    http://www.dealdatabase.com/forum/sh...vo-HDVR2/page3
    Last edited by Thinkdiff; 05-15-2012 at 08:06 AM.

  5. #5
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    crashHD thanks for taking the time to reply.

    You ask about onset, now that I jog my foggy gray matter a bit harder, I think for me it was in 2 stages. The second stage is the recent one, in the last 15 days one dtivo rebooted randomly, a bit unusual, that reboot took 3-4 days to come up and finally complete (usually it is 5 minutes) - all was fine, all locals are there (there are only several) and other channels as well, guide data seems ok, season passes working fine, etc.

    A couple days after the first dtivo "recovered" the second dtivo rebooted 3-4 days later it was back up and had recorded a show in a season pass that had already started, so I could determine when it came back on line. Within a day or two the second dtivo rebooted when I was out. It has been 7 days and 2 hours and has progressed all the way to 67% and will not let me get to the menus to watch live or pre-recorded shows, still waiting for it to finish. All that is the second stage.

    What I think of as the first stage is much harder to give time frames for. Any where from 6 months to 2 years ago. I have a fuzzy recollection of a dtivo rebooting AND it pushing me to guided set up, which there was nothing wrong with and it took over a hour and was still acquiring sat data. I think that was a significant change that I did not recognise as important. I was able to get to the menus, watch locals and pre-recorded, SP's worked fine, data filled the guide. I scratched my head, something was up. Given most everything worked, I moved on with life. I am vague on the time frame as we have frequent, yet brief power outages, but the dtivos are on ups so reboots were very infrequent, leaving me with a lack of data points on when this started. I do not have any insight to when 6.2a users may have had issues in my area, no local contacts to ask.

    On the first dtivo that is up and working, the few locals in our market are intact.

    Looks like I will have to figure out how to get 6.4a on a test box and see what the state of affairs is for the comparable mods that I have in place on 4.0.1b. Losing MRV is a big loss for me.

    I am so grateful that this resource is here, I must not be all that good at picking out search terms as I can read with all my free time for days/weeks on end and still wonder what am I missing, what do I still not know?

  6. #6
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    hi Thinkdiff,

    The household has 2 subscribed dtivos and they serve as a source for paid programming and we find that MRV is a big convenience, along with other mods. These dtivos are feeding our still SD tv's that we use daily. We do not have any HD anything at this time. No one here watches sports to speak of, my personal view is that sports is the primary motivation for having HD. I am sure I would enjoy HD for other programs too, but it is not a must have here - what stops me from going to HD also is the snowball it creates. 2 HD tv's for sure to replace 2 tv's that work just fine, and 2 hd recording devices, larger hard drives and blueray too. Plus I gather the new generation of dvrs being offered are not going anywhere in the mod department.

    For me MRV is a very useful feature, one that it sure looks like I will be soon doing without. My first thought is to program both tivos to record identical shows (when tuners are available) so I can watch a given show in either place. It seems silly for me to do it this way, but it could help.

    I have been with dtv for nearly a decade. I don't want to change that. In a way I see dtv lately as creating more problems for customers like me than they are offering solutions. If I understand it right, receiver activation or change in status there of (even without new hardware of any kind being supplied by dtv), restarts the 2 year commitment cycle? if true a new 2 year cycle is not something I want right now. Sorry, I think I have gone off topic on a threat I started. Guess I am pretty stressed right now, Wife not happy with this current deviation from what was working fine for years.

    I guess my point is these dtivos are our sole and primary recording and viewing tools to the programming we pay for.

  7. #7
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    Sorry, dss-what. I realized I didn't really address any of your post in my reply.

    I'd start with upgrading to 6.2a (which has MRV and HME). I don't think there's any downside from the 4.01b to 6.2 switch if I remember correctly. Personally, I like the 4.01b interface color scheme a bit better, but that's very minor. If you haven't touched the TiVo since putting 4.01b on it, there will be a bit of a learning curve getting them upgraded while retaining your hacks, but it's not terribly difficult. AFAIK, the only issue with 6.2a is the loss of local channels, but it seems like they haven't made the guide data switch in your area yet.

    If 6.2a doesn't solve your issue, 6.4 is the only option.

  8. #8
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    minor update - 7 days and 3 hours of acquiring sat data at 67%.
    I managed to get to the menus on this dtivo that is still acquiring sat data, I could play the pre-recorded shows.

    Upon going to live tv - I get the acquiring sat data screen which quickly went to 60%. I expect it to take 1-2 days just to get back to 67%, who knows how long to finish this and start to work "somewhat normal" again.

    I appreciate insights anyone can offer, thanks in advance.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thinkdiff View Post
    Why would you want to run SA TiVo software?
    To have the features in the SA software. HMO/HME/MRV.

    Back in the day, before 6.2 for the DTivos, people used to run SA v4.something on the DTivos. The software to control the dss hardware was present in the SA software release.

    6.2a is too old to handle the latest change to the guide data format. It's just a wishful thinking crapshoot, but wouldn't it be nice to find a newer version that could still offer the same features, and be able to handle the new guide data without loosing local channels?
    They say beer will make me dumb. It are go good with pizza!-----------
    3XR10, prommed, 3xdvr40,4xdvr39, all networked, ranging from 40GB to 750GB

  10. #10
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    thanks for your added comment Thinkdiff,

    Direct to the point, I have largely been in the "it is working fine, leave it alone" mode with the dtivos, I have visited here over the years and read of problems others were having, that I was not. New versions offered me little gain for major pain, get a few features here or there, and are behind on this mod or that mod that has not been worked out just yet, mods I was using without missing a beat on 4.0.1b. For me, "upgrading" was on the back burner.

    My first thought was as you suggest. I am going to be digging for lots of basic info on the hands on of what to do and how to do it. I have not been successful in finding 6.2a to use as a starting point. I check various online venues and listings are found but the sources are not active. That gets me nowhere. I have read recently that 6.4A has returned to the satellite data stream, Now I have to determine if given I have 4.x can I get 6.4a on my dtivo over the sat? I do have an old drive with 3.x on it that may work as a collection tool for 6.4a via sat. and then learn how to manipulate the slices.

    As crashHD mentions 6.2a may not work for guide data, locals, etc. Or it might work for a while and then suddenly stop. I am wrestling with the thought of doing it twice, once for 6.2a and for whatever reason again with 6.4a.

    as I research this I am making a collection of threads and specific posts to get this accomplished it is a big task for a relative novice that I am. On a positive there is a noticeable familiarity with linux in the household, it's all the unique tivo specific staff that is a challenge. Appreciate any help or pointers.
    Last edited by dss-what; 05-15-2012 at 06:17 PM.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by crashHD View Post
    To have the features in the SA software. HMO/HME/MRV.

    Back in the day, before 6.2 for the DTivos, people used to run SA v4.something on the DTivos. The software to control the dss hardware was present in the SA software release.

    6.2a is too old to handle the latest change to the guide data format. It's just a wishful thinking crapshoot, but wouldn't it be nice to find a newer version that could still offer the same features, and be able to handle the new guide data without loosing local channels?
    4.0.1b the last SA version to have dssapp, IIRC.

    Newer 7.x SA software does not contain any of the satellite code so it's impossible to use with DirecTV.

    6.2a still works - it just doesn't get locals in upgraded areas. Who knows how long it will last though.

  12. #12
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    There's a ton of information floating around this site and others on how to upgrade to 6.2a. If you can't find the slices, I have them - let me know if you need them. There's also a MFSLive CD around that has a "62small" image on it which can be restored to your existing drive or a new drive - filename is mfslive6b-with-62small.iso.

    Upgrading from 6.2 to 6.4 is pretty simple with slices, especially if 6.4a is now back in stream. The upgrade shouldn't take long using some of the slice upgrade scripts that have been posted here in the last few years.

    I seem to remember 4.0.1b not receiving slices over the SAT connection, so you have to go back to 3.1.1x, insert the 6.x slices and upgrade, or start fresh with a 6.2 image. 6.2a may not work forever, but if you rely heavily on MRV, it's really your only option right now.

  13. #13
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    Well after 7 days of acquiring data the dtivo finally gave up and presented a choice of 3 options. While I did not write them down, expecting nothing useful to come of it, I can report the basic idea. one of the choices was to acquire sat data, no - don't want to wait another few days to probably get back to where I am now. a second option was to repeat guided set up, that if I recall correctly wanted a soft reboot, no thanks. last was to "reset satellite data" - but cautioned not do do this unless you are an installer or are directed to do so by dtv. So I went to research the last one, before I could get anything in the way of useful info (about 5 minutes) the dtivo went to a live tuner as was playing what ever. WOW! now what? well all the channels appear to be there and tune-able. the locals are tune-able from the remote but are not in the guide listing. I did test a quick manual record by time and the locals are in the choices for manual record (but not in the guide - interesting) and it did record a local channel I told it to. I will try calling later and see if the reps can gets the locals back in the guide.

  14. #14
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    Thinkdiff please look at your P.M.

  15. #15
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    Since we've had no luck finding 6.2a slices, we decided to go with the 6.4a slices that could be grabbed from DVRUpgrade. Pulled together all the other files, including superpatch-678all-NutKase-1.15.tcl (patched from the last 1.2 and 1.15 diff file), manually updated bufferhack41.tcl, the kill'd 7.2.2-oth-K1 kernel from the DVRUpgrade LBA48 4.4 CD, latest tivowebplus, etc., etc. Spent a couple weekends reading & searching the forums here to get the instructions straight and typed up so I wouldn't lose my way in the middle.....

    Copied the drive from one spare DTivo to start with. It is a RCA DVR40. I unpacked the 6.4a-01-2-321.slices.tgz file into the following files:
    dbload
    GZcore-127004584-2.slice.gz
    GZhpk-Series2-127004588-2.slice.gz
    GZkernel-Series2-127004586-2.slice.gz
    swsystem-127006885-2.slice.gz
    utils-127004582-2.slice.gz

    I then unzipped the *.gz files to *.slice. This was all done on a linux box (avoiding any windows issues). The files were ftp'd binary to the up-and-running RCA DVR40 to /var/packages. I ran dbload *.slice, and revceived no feedback (I assume this is normal??? Never done this before.) After editing /tvbin/installSw.itcl to remove the reboot and to add the $name parameter to the updateroot call (using vi on the tivo), I ran:
    83:/tvbin# ./installSw.itcl 6.4a-01-2-321

    and received:
    06/04:00:47:50: ./installSw.itcl: id of /SwSystem/ACTIVE is 18272635
    06/04:00:47:50: ./installSw.itcl: Error checking sw installation safety: can't open object (errDbNotFound)

    06/04:00:47:50: ./installSw.itcl: Assuming software install is OK
    06/04:00:47:50: ./installSw.itcl: No software found in db for "6.4a-01-2-321", can't open object (errDbNotFound)

    The only relevant post I've been able to find is here: http://www.dealdatabase.com/forum/sh...le-help-please where toca13579 missed loading the loopset slice. Of course, that poster was upgrading to 6.2. I'm trying to upgrade to 6.4a. From 4.0.1b.

    Do I need that loopset slice? And if so, where in the heck can I get it since it only seems to have been included with the 6.2 upgrade, and all those links are long dead?

    Thanks for any assistance....one of the DTivos decided to do a random reboot, and we are back into acquiring satellite data for days.

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