Dying DirecTiVo

For the past couple of weeks, we’ve been experiencing various hiccups in our DirecTiVo’s video playback and then in the past couple of days, it’s rebooted itself a few times. So basically I think the hard drive is about to die.

Last night I went to Fry’s and bought a 200 GB Seagate hard drive for $100 – $50 mail-in rebate.

Seagate 200 GB internal hard drive

I set up my clunky Linux box and a CRT in the living room so I could work while we watched the other TiVo. The power supply in the Linux box is ridiculously loud (couldn’t hear the TV!) so I ripped it out and plugged in a spare Enermax power supply which was much quieter. Then I put the old TiVo hard drive and the new Seagate drive in the Linux box (had to remove the factory-installed “cable select” jumper from the Seagate) and booted into Debian and used dd_rescue to copy the drive.

This morning I checked the status and the copy completed but with a few hundred KB of errors. I took the Seagate out, jumpered it for master, installed it in the DirecTiVo, booted up, and crossed my fingers. The TiVo started to boot but then rebooted itself and then it booted into the GSOD (Green Screen of Death – a “serious error” screen) where it said that I should leave it plugged in for 3 hours and let it repair itself. So I just went to work and let it do its thing. The hard drive was busy chugging away so maybe it will sort itself out although I am not terribly optimistic.

Now I’m wondering if it failed because of the errors it encountered while copying the drive? Or was it because I copied a 160 GB drive to a 200 GB drive? Should I have used an identical drive? The thing was that the 200 GB drive was considerably cheaper than the 160 GB drives because of the sale and the rebate.

3 thoughts on “Dying DirecTiVo

  1. So far so good. When I came home last night, the TiVo had recovered. Last night we didn’t see any blips in playback, although we’re having one problem. It is refusing to record shows on local channels – it doesn’t seem to see them in the guide data even though they’re there when browse the guide manually and these channels are all in the Channels I Receive screen. I tried forcing a guide data download and restarting the TiVo – neither of which helped. I’m hoping that it sorts itself out.

  2. Did you manage to get it going? Did you try “Clear and delete everything” to restart the guided setup, etc, and see if that worked?

    I probably need to do the same thing too, as my current drive is getting rather noisy.

  3. Yeah, it seems to have magically resolved itself. TiVo can be funny like that. 🙂

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