Replace hard drive explorer 8300hd


I replaced a Western Digital original 160GB hard drive in a Rogers 8300 PVR that had failed. I use a Hitachi 500GB IDE drive and after some experimentation got the right pin configuration to get it to boot up and seem to work.
The problem is it will only record less than 2 hrs of programs before it says the drive is full. Does something else need to be done to the drive?


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  1. Hi David, & Welcome to Tom's Hardware!

    At present you are using a 500GB Hitachi IDE HDD as your primary boot and data drive? Is this the only drive on your computer? Are you recording music or streaming video that take up a lot of storage space?

    One thing to do is double click on My Computer, right click on your HDD, and on the General tab, click on CleanUp. The put a checkmark in Temporary Internet Files, Temp files, and Recycle Bin. That may clear out a lot of old unneeded files. Let it clean out these files.

    When done, how much free space to you have available?

    Probably the best way to check out the HDD is to go to Disk Management, and upload a Screenshot of the Disk Management dialog box, with the link in your response post, so we can see that the HDD is healthy, how much space is remaining, and if there ae any other partitions that may be taking up space.
  2. This might be a better forum:

    AIUI, you shouldn't need to do anything to the drive except to jumper it and cable it. Then connect the coax and wait for the unit to automatically reinitialise.

    You might like to erase the drive, but I don't know if this is necessary.

    It doesn't sound like you have clipped the drive's capacity with an incorrect jumper, but you might like to check it anyway:
  3. As a last resort, you could try reformatting the HDD.​1859

    Last Resort (Reformat). If for some reason you can't get STB to do what you want and you've rebooted it by unplugging it, etc., this is a "last resort" item - say just before taking unit back, you can try reformatting the HDD. The format operation resets all data on the DVR, including all recordings, preferences and scheduled recordings. It is a "factory fresh" reset.

    When doing the format procedure, there are times where it won't always "take" and will have to be redone again. The procedure is to get the mail light blinking from the remote control by holding down the pause button. Once blinking do not press anything else except the page down (page -) button on the remote three times while watching the display. The display should say something like HDD-1 and then HDD-2 or HDD-F. Once on the setting you want (typically the third press) leave it alone and put the remote down. In a few minutes, the DVR will reboot and reformat on it's own. Once complete in about 10 to 15 minutes (depending on RDC and FDC signal level quality) the unit will be available to be turned on, but it's best to leave it off and come back at a later time after it has completely downloaded all of the guide data and info.
    1.Press and hold PAUSE until Mail led is lit.
    2.Press PAGE down or (-), and then press LIST three times.
    3.Turn box off. When turned back on, formatting will begin.
  4. Hi,

    It is actually a Explorer 8300HD cable PVR from Rogers Cable in Canada. I did actually set the cable settings based on the two options shown on the diagram on the drive. I am not a computer guy per se, just pretty handy and like to tinker.

    The first cable setting I tried cut the HDMI output and the box didn't like that setting as both audio and video were disabled. The second setting I chose was the one under the Hitachi drive link fzabkar added to the response with the cable setting with one jumper vertical and the second horizontal under the 2GB 32GB section. Pins CA and DF were the setting I believe as on jumper was vertical and one horizontal. Is it possible this has limited the drive capacity? The other option on the 16 head cable setting I believe was the one that disabled the HDMI output.


  5. David, you have clipped your drive's capacity to 32GB.

    That said, this would suggest that each hour requires 16GB of disc space. This seems far too high, so that's why I initially though that your problem couldn't be a capacity limitation issue.
  6. fzakar,

    I am unclear on your quote of capacity limitation issue.

    This drive only showed two cable option settings and the with the first where the jumpers were vertical caused the output to be blocked on the HDMI output. The second was the only other shown option and while it worked there was only less than two hours of recording.

    How would one figure out how to reconfigure the jumpers correctly?Is it possible that this drive is not compatable? It is an IDE drive, which is waht is specified and in checking the other site you referenced it appears that the box should reboot and reload the firmware to operate the drive correctly. There doesn't appear to be any special software required that doesn't reload on the reboot of the PVR from the cable supplier.

    I am flying blind here as I am not really up on the drives etc.

    Any further help would be appreciated.


  7. Perhaps it would make it easier for us if you told us how the original WD 160GB drive was jumpered. Then we could try to match its jumpering scheme on your Hitachi.

    In any case, jumper D-B must not be installed, otherwise you won't see more than 32GB of the drive's 500GB capacity.
  8. Fzabkar,

    The Western Digital has a 10 pin configuration with the single jumper set to the cable position which if using the Hitachi pin as a guide it would have been vertical on pins A+B.
    The cable select on the Hitachi shows as per your reference in the link and it is the same Hitachi Deskstar drive as noted. Should I try just the E+F jumper and remove the D+B jumper?

    Setting the A+B on the Hitachi which would mirror the Western Digital didn't work and setting the other 16 head cable configuration which was A+B and E+F seemed to cause the PVR to cut out any audio and video output to the HDMI cable as noted on the screen in a message noting no output.
  9. Assuming your Hitachi model follows the same layout as in my linked document, then the Cable Select position requires a jumper over E-F, plus a jumper over either A-B or A-C. The latter would select between 16 logical heads or 15 logical heads, respectively.

    I would have thought that the A-B / E-F combination would have been the most appropriate.

    Jumper D-B should definitely not be used.

    I would try the other 16 logical head settings.

    You say that there is no output from the HDMI port. Have you tried the AV outputs?

    Did you try resetting and reformatting the STB / HDD as advised by anonymous1?
  10. Ok today I did change the jumper pin configuration to the A-B/ E-F configuration and rebooted the PVR. It reloaded and appeared to work fine as it did allow output to the HDMI connector and panel. I was able to access the record function as tried a manual recording which set up and worked.
    The issue still remains where after about 40 minutes of recording I check the remaining space on the drive and it indicated it was 35% full already??

    So I reinstalled the original Western Digital 160GB drive and rebooted the PVR for updates to this drive or firmware on the machine. A poster on another Rogers forum indicated that Rogers did a firmware update a few weeks ago and some users with Explorer 8600HD's were experiencing playback issues the same as I have experienced.

    New recordings at first blush seem OK, but I only did a minimal test of about 15 mins as other duties call. I have set it up to record a few 1 hr programs tonight and will see where I end up with this drive. It had 11 stored 1 hr old programs on the drive and only showed 38% of the drive used.

    Any thoughts on why the Hitachi 500GB drive would be 35% used with only 45 minutes of recording?


  11. Best answer
    AISI, your WD numbers would suggest that each hour of recording time requires about 5.5GB of disc space.

    160 / (11 / 0.38) = 5.5 GB per hour

    This means that 2 hours would require 11GB.

    Therefore, ISTM that the PVR thinks that the Hitachi's capacity is only about 11GB. The only way I can see this happening is if the drive has a HPA.

    If this is the case, then you could restore the drive's full native capacity with a utility such as HDAT2, or Hitachi's Feature Tool, or the HDD Capacity Restore Tool.
  12. Thank you for the information and follow up. It turned out to be a issue with Rogers doing a Firmware update that caused problems with the Scientific Atlantic Explorer 8600 cable box. A few updates and reboots seems to have cured the problem, so the original W.D. HDD was not defective.

    There are still some issues with this Firmware upgrade causing the HDD to spin up and down constantly that Rogers is apparently working on this fix. The Rogers "community" is less optimistic about an early resolution on this one, as a 2008 Firmware update had the same issues and took them a year to resolve.

    I returned the Hitachi drive to my retailer for a refund and he was going to correct the problem I created by incorrectly pinning the drive to 32GB.


  13. Best answer selected by benny benny.
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