Originally Posted by dmusoke
Thanks Tveli ...but doesn't this increase the random movement of the read/write heads of the disk drive, hence its life time? Fro regular PC drives, it I believe it does but I may be wrong here...
You are most welcome, dmusoke...
The read/write heads will be gyrating back and forth about the same whether or not you fastforward/rewind/commercial-skip, due to the ongoing recordings, and the tendency towards disk fragmentation.
A possible way to reduce the read/write head/servo activity of the drive would be to tune every tuner to an unauthorized "you are not subscribed to this" channel, so there will be nothing to record onto the hard drive. (Or disconnect the input coax cable....)
This question brings to mind fun I had with a DEC RP06 "washing machine" disk drive back in the 1970s on a PDP-11/40:
Using nonprivileged system calls, one could position the heads at any physical block, so i wrote a program which looped and moved the r/w heads from an innermost block to an outermost block, on the platter(s). This caused r/w heads to go back and forth between their extreme positions as fast as mechanically possible - so the 300 lb washing-machine-sized drive "walked itself" across the floor until it pulled out its own cable, and system would crash. (I didn't run that program more than twice.)