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Replacement for frozen TiVo freezes itself after less than..

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Anonymous
July 22, 2005 4:06:32 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

My 18 month old TiVo Series 2 started freezing about a month back.
After this happened a few times, TiVo technical support diagnosed it as
a likely failed hard drive and replaced it for $79 (plus shipping).
The replacement they shipped me, a refurbished machine, is now showing
the same symptoms after less than a month. TiVo is replacing the
replacement, no problem, but the TiVo guy was asking if there's
anything in my setup that might be causing this problem. I started
wondering myself. The setup is very simple---coax cable to a splitter
with one side to the the TiVo, then RCA out to the TV. A wireless USB
adapter is connected to a port on the back. The TiVo physcially sits
on top of a VCR and underneath a DVD player, but the feet keep a little
space between the machines. The TiVo shows a normal temperature.

Can anyone think of anything about this setup that might cause the TiVo
to freeze?

TIA,
-Lotofun
Anonymous
July 22, 2005 4:06:33 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

The splitter "could" be causing some signal loss resulting in the Tivo box
having a hard time processing the incoming signal. Could also be your cable
signal is too low to begin with. Seems like some Tivo boxes require a good
strong signal to operate properly. Does the problem mostly occur with
digital channels? Does the blue "no signal" Tivo screen flash occasionally
among the black picture? You might try getting rid of the splitter and
connecting the cable line directly into the Tivo.

I also had weird Tivo freeze and blank picture problems for months until I
figured out the two splitters in my setup were causing signal loss. A cheap
$10 12db signal amp from Wal-Mart fixed the problem.

"Lot-o-fun" <lotofun61@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:210720052006342766%lotofun61@yahoo.com...

> Can anyone think of anything about this setup that might cause the TiVo
> to freeze?
July 22, 2005 4:24:19 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

Lot-o-fun <lotofun61@yahoo.com> wrote in news:210720052006342766%lotofun61
@yahoo.com:

> Can anyone think of anything about this setup that might cause the TiVo
> to freeze?

What does freezing mean? Are you perhaps in Alaska? Does the video stop?
Does the entire box itself stop...no movement at all from the fan or drive?

--
Minister of All Things Digital & Electronic, and Holder of Past Knowledge
stile99@email.com. Cabal# 24601-fnord | Sleep is irrelevant.
I speak for no one but myself, and |Caffeine will be assimilated.
no one else speaks for me. O- | Decaf is futile.
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Anonymous
July 22, 2005 4:57:36 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

By "freeze", I mean that there is absolutely no picture (completely
black) or sound coming from TiVo's output and no response to the
remote. I did not hear the fan, but I did not carefully check whether
it was going. Same with the drive---I didn't hear it, but I didn't
check carefully.

In article <Xns969AC56A046E6stile@129.250.170.82>, Howard
<stile99@email..com> wrote:

> Lot-o-fun <lotofun61@yahoo.com> wrote in news:210720052006342766%lotofun61
> @yahoo.com:
>
> > Can anyone think of anything about this setup that might cause the TiVo
> > to freeze?
>
> What does freezing mean? Are you perhaps in Alaska? Does the video stop?
> Does the entire box itself stop...no movement at all from the fan or drive?
July 22, 2005 5:25:40 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

Lot-o-fun <lotofun61@yahoo.com> wrote in
news:210720052057374055%lotofun61@yahoo.com:

> By "freeze", I mean that there is absolutely no picture (completely
> black) or sound coming from TiVo's output and no response to the
> remote. I did not hear the fan, but I did not carefully check whether
> it was going. Same with the drive---I didn't hear it, but I didn't
> check carefully.

Unplug it, wait a few seconds, plug it back in. If there is still nothing
whatsoever, it's not a drive problem...we've still miles to go before we
even get to the drive. I can understand that two complete kicking the
bucket like this would be frustrating.

--
Minister of All Things Digital & Electronic, and Holder of Past Knowledge
stile99@email.com. Cabal# 24601-fnord | Sleep is irrelevant.
I speak for no one but myself, and |Caffeine will be assimilated.
no one else speaks for me. O- | Decaf is futile.
Anonymous
July 22, 2005 8:21:49 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

>> By "freeze", I mean that there is absolutely no picture (completely
>> black) or sound coming from TiVo's output and no response to the
>> remote. I did not hear the fan, but I did not carefully check whether
>> it was going. Same with the drive---I didn't hear it, but I didn't
>> check carefully.
>
>Unplug it, wait a few seconds, plug it back in. If there is still nothing
>whatsoever, it's not a drive problem...we've still miles to go before we
>even get to the drive. I can understand that two complete kicking the
>bucket like this would be frustrating.

I think I posted here awhile back about my tivo freezing up completely
(3 weeks old). The tech guy swore up and down that it was the signal strength
and to get an rf amp from rat shack to amplify the cable signal. That didn't
help. I have my RMA number and am getting ready to mail it back for a
free replacement since the unit isn't very old.

For the $80 replacement fee, why not just replace the hard drive yourself with
a quality one?
Anonymous
July 22, 2005 2:18:46 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

> My 18 month old TiVo Series 2 started freezing about a month back.
> After this happened a few times, TiVo technical support diagnosed it as
> a likely failed hard drive and replaced it for $79 (plus shipping).
> The replacement they shipped me, a refurbished machine, is now showing
> the same symptoms after less than a month.

So what are you doing that's killing these machines? Do you have it crammed
into a cabinet that doesn't have sufficient ventilation? If you don't keep
these things reasonably well ventilated they will fail.

Try this, if it's not already fried, pull it out of the cabinet and let it
cool for about an hour. Hook it up again and immediately go into the System
menu to see what it lists as internal temperature. Let it run for a while
and check the temp again over the course of the next few hours. Mine runs
at about 35C with two drives and a weaknees fan/bracket kit. If yours runs
much hotter then you'll need to improve the airflow for it.

Do you have electrical problems at the house? Do you lose power often or do
you go through lightbulbs quicker than seems appropriate? You might (and
this is a stretch) be having enough electrical fluctuations to have it harm
equipment. Unlikely unless you've got other stuff getting fried too.

Otherwise, coincidences do happen.

-Bill Kearney
Anonymous
July 22, 2005 2:26:48 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

Power cycling gets the TiVo to work again...for a while. The first
machine that died got to the point where it would freeze within hours
after power cycling. There were also some recorded shows which would
cause the freeze.

Power cycling also got the replacement machine to work again. It froze
a second time just under 2 days later. Since the machine was less than
a month in my house, I didn't want to mess around and got the
replacement right away.

In article <Xns969ACFD1DFDE7stile@129.250.170.88>, Howard
<stile99@email..com> wrote:

> Lot-o-fun <lotofun61@yahoo.com> wrote in
> news:210720052057374055%lotofun61@yahoo.com:
>
> > By "freeze", I mean that there is absolutely no picture (completely
> > black) or sound coming from TiVo's output and no response to the
> > remote. I did not hear the fan, but I did not carefully check whether
> > it was going. Same with the drive---I didn't hear it, but I didn't
> > check carefully.
>
> Unplug it, wait a few seconds, plug it back in. If there is still nothing
> whatsoever, it's not a drive problem...we've still miles to go before we
> even get to the drive. I can understand that two complete kicking the
> bucket like this would be frustrating.
Anonymous
July 22, 2005 2:29:27 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

In article <gv_De.157736$go.96759@fed1read05>, Joe St. Lucas <
@delete.thisstuff> wrote:

> For the $80 replacement fee, why not just replace the hard drive yourself with
> a quality one?

I don't have the hardware easily available to process a new drive
myself. "Drop in" drives cost well more than $80.

The drive that is recommended (some Maxtor drive that is supposed to do
better under "always on" conditions) cost well more than $80.

And most important, getting a new machine from TiVo is covered under
warranty should anything go wrong.
Anonymous
July 22, 2005 2:31:28 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

I've never had a signal problem in the 18 month during which the first
TiVo machine operated perfectly. I never saw the blue "no signal"
screen at all.

I don't have digital cable.

The signal problems would really make your machine freeze to black with
the machine not responding to the remote at all?

In article <11e0temk486a3e7@corp.supernews.com>, culfan
<culfan@webtv.net> wrote:

> The splitter "could" be causing some signal loss resulting in the Tivo box
> having a hard time processing the incoming signal. Could also be your cable
> signal is too low to begin with. Seems like some Tivo boxes require a good
> strong signal to operate properly. Does the problem mostly occur with
> digital channels? Does the blue "no signal" Tivo screen flash occasionally
> among the black picture? You might try getting rid of the splitter and
> connecting the cable line directly into the Tivo.
>
> I also had weird Tivo freeze and blank picture problems for months until I
> figured out the two splitters in my setup were causing signal loss. A cheap
> $10 12db signal amp from Wal-Mart fixed the problem.
>
> "Lot-o-fun" <lotofun61@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> news:210720052006342766%lotofun61@yahoo.com...
>
> > Can anyone think of anything about this setup that might cause the TiVo
> > to freeze?
>
>
Anonymous
July 22, 2005 7:26:40 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

In article <6P6dnUcz56vbnXzfRVn-ug@speakeasy.net>, wkearney99
<wkearney99@hotmail.com> wrote:

> So what are you doing that's killing these machines?

That's what I was asking---is there something I'm doing that's killing
the machines, or is it just a coincidence.

> Do you have it crammed
> into a cabinet that doesn't have sufficient ventilation? If you don't keep
> these things reasonably well ventilated they will fail.

The machine is sitting on top of a VCR on a bottom shelf of a table
that holds the TV. The shelf is open on all four sides, and there's
lots of space between the machines and everything else. The feet of
the TiVo give a little space between it and the VCR (which is
essentially never on) and the DVD player (also rarely on) sitting on
top of it has feet as well.

> Try this, if it's not already fried, pull it out of the cabinet and let it
> cool for about an hour. Hook it up again and immediately go into the System
> menu to see what it lists as internal temperature. Let it run for a while
> and check the temp again over the course of the next few hours. Mine runs
> at about 35C with two drives and a weaknees fan/bracket kit. If yours runs
> much hotter then you'll need to improve the airflow for it.

The internal temperature of my original machine was right around 35C.
The replacement that they sent me is running a little hotter. Once I
saw it was 44C and once it was 42C. Both of those temperatures are
labeled "normal."

When I get the replacement for the replacement, I'll monitor the
temperaure carefully.

> Do you have electrical problems at the house? Do you lose power often or do
> you go through lightbulbs quicker than seems appropriate? You might (and
> this is a stretch) be having enough electrical fluctuations to have it harm
> equipment. Unlikely unless you've got other stuff getting fried too.

Nothing like this applies to my situation.

> Otherwise, coincidences do happen.

Other than the temperature, which may or may not be an issue, I think
coincidence in the most likely candidate. Still, I thought I'd throw
the question out there to see if people could come up with other
possibly explanations.
July 23, 2005 3:08:35 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

On Fri, 22 Jul 2005 00:06:32 GMT, Lot-o-fun <lotofun61@yahoo.com>
wrote:

>My 18 month old TiVo Series 2 started freezing about a month back.
>After this happened a few times, TiVo technical support diagnosed it as
>a likely failed hard drive and replaced it for $79 (plus shipping).
>The replacement they shipped me, a refurbished machine, is now showing
>the same symptoms after less than a month. TiVo is replacing the
>replacement, no problem, but the TiVo guy was asking if there's
>anything in my setup that might be causing this problem. I started
>wondering myself. The setup is very simple---coax cable to a splitter
>with one side to the the TiVo, then RCA out to the TV. A wireless USB
>adapter is connected to a port on the back. The TiVo physcially sits
>on top of a VCR and underneath a DVD player, but the feet keep a little
>space between the machines. The TiVo shows a normal temperature.
>
>Can anyone think of anything about this setup that might cause the TiVo
>to freeze?
>
>TIA,
>-Lotofun


Same thing is happening to my new series 2 Tivo... one day old and it
keeps locking up every 20 to 30 minute. I still have a series 1 that
is now 5 years old and and I had Zero, Nada and No problems for the
past 5 years I even upgraded to a 80 gb drive 90 days after I bought
it.

I got teh series 2 so I can have it networked... but have gone back to
the series 1 since it seems to be bullet proof!

Will be calling Tivo and sending it back for a full refund.
Anonymous
July 23, 2005 1:09:11 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

> Same thing is happening to my new series 2 Tivo... one day old and it
> keeps locking up every 20 to 30 minute. I still have a series 1 that
> is now 5 years old and and I had Zero, Nada and No problems for the
> past 5 years I even upgraded to a 80 gb drive 90 days after I bought
> it.
>
> I got teh series 2 so I can have it networked... but have gone back to
> the series 1 since it seems to be bullet proof!
>
> Will be calling Tivo and sending it back for a full refund.

S2 models really don't have a reputation for being flaky, I think you
just got unlucky. I personally would suggest allowing them to try
swapping it out first and see if you just got a rare defective one.

Randy S.
July 23, 2005 2:34:20 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

On Sat, 23 Jul 2005 09:09:11 -0400, "Randy S." <rswitt@NOSPAM.com>
wrote:

>
>> Same thing is happening to my new series 2 Tivo... one day old and it
>> keeps locking up every 20 to 30 minute. I still have a series 1 that
>> is now 5 years old and and I had Zero, Nada and No problems for the
>> past 5 years I even upgraded to a 80 gb drive 90 days after I bought
>> it.
>>
>> I got teh series 2 so I can have it networked... but have gone back to
>> the series 1 since it seems to be bullet proof!
>>
>> Will be calling Tivo and sending it back for a full refund.
>
>S2 models really don't have a reputation for being flaky, I think you
>just got unlucky. I personally would suggest allowing them to try
>swapping it out first and see if you just got a rare defective one.
>
>Randy S.


I have called three times and right now I'm on the phone with a
supervisor, he is still trying to say nothing is wrong and that I
should just reset it... again for the 20+ time in two days.

It's like you buying a new car and while driving home every 5 miles
the car just stops and you have to start it back up. When you retuurn
it to the dealership they insists you keep trying to drive it.
July 23, 2005 9:52:47 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

On Sat, 23 Jul 2005 09:09:11 -0400, "Randy S." <rswitt@NOSPAM.com>
wrote:

>
>> Same thing is happening to my new series 2 Tivo... one day old and it
>> keeps locking up every 20 to 30 minute. I still have a series 1 that
>> is now 5 years old and and I had Zero, Nada and No problems for the
>> past 5 years I even upgraded to a 80 gb drive 90 days after I bought
>> it.
>>
>> I got teh series 2 so I can have it networked... but have gone back to
>> the series 1 since it seems to be bullet proof!
>>
>> Will be calling Tivo and sending it back for a full refund.
>
>S2 models really don't have a reputation for being flaky, I think you
>just got unlucky. I personally would suggest allowing them to try
>swapping it out first and see if you just got a rare defective one.
>
>Randy S.


After talking to two supervisors at Tivo they finally gave me a
return/exchange number... They first told me that I should hang up and
call them back when my Tivo was locked up, I had reset it prior to
call ing them. I asked them why I should do that when the unit is
locked up you can do nothing.. you can't chnage channels, refcord or
get to the menus?... there was dead silence for 10 seconds and they
just told me it was their policy and she kept telling me

"We don't want you to go through the trouble of doing a
return/exchange"

I told them I'm more then happy to endure the trouble of doing an
exchange... had to keep telling her that I know it would be painful
but that I was sure would survive a exchange before she finally either
gave in or decided that I was being sarcasitic.
Anonymous
July 24, 2005 1:22:48 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

> After talking to two supervisors at Tivo they finally gave me a
> return/exchange number... They first told me that I should hang up and
> call them back when my Tivo was locked up, I had reset it prior to
> call ing them. I asked them why I should do that when the unit is
> locked up you can do nothing.. you can't chnage channels, refcord or
> get to the menus?... there was dead silence for 10 seconds and they
> just told me it was their policy and she kept telling me
>
> "We don't want you to go through the trouble of doing a
> return/exchange"
>
> I told them I'm more then happy to endure the trouble of doing an
> exchange... had to keep telling her that I know it would be painful
> but that I was sure would survive a exchange before she finally either
> gave in or decided that I was being sarcasitic.
>

Yeah, that sounds frustrating. First line tech support is almost
universally the pits!

Randy S.
!