Just wanted to share my experience installing a new TiVo Premier XL to work with my Comcast Digital Starter package. Previous to this I was using the Comcast cable box.
I purchased my new TiVo Premier XL from Amazon. Before it arrived I stopped at the Sunnyvale Comcast store and picked up an M-CableCard. That store has recently been remodeled and is now very pleasant. I was met at the door by an agent, asked for my name and what I wished to do, then asked to wait in their sitting area. Someone called my name within 5 minutes and quickly provided my new M-CableCard. Before giving it to me, she scanned several bar codes on the card and added them to my account. She also said there was a $1.10 charge per month for the card.
When the TiVo arrived, I initially set it up without the CableCard. That took some time as it seemed to download and install new software, maybe more than once. Anyway, after an hour or so it was working with the Analog channels.
Next, following TiVo and Comcast instructions, I plugged the CableCard into the powered on TiVo. It recognized the card and displayed the installer screen. I wrote down the numbers thinking I would have to "Pair" the card to my account. I went to the Comcast web page and activated the card. I kept looking for where I needed to enter the pairing information, but could not find it. It seems that the agent at the store had already done that and forgot to tell me. So all I had to do was press the Activate button and within a few minutes everything was working.
Unfortunately, as I was setting up a seasons pass, it suddenly went to a gray screen and seemed to hang there for some time. I finally got tired of waiting an rebooted the TiVo by pulling the power cord. It went through the boot-up sequence, and then started another download. This one took over 1 1/2 hours. (This may have been to download the On Demand code once it saw the CableCard?) Eventually it finished and everything is now working great, including On Demand.
So all in all, a very positive experience. My only minuses were the downloads took very long even. This even though I am connected via Ethernet. I expect that is a TiVo problem. And I kept trying to find how to "Pair" the card when I didn't have to. (A little knowledge can be deadly
I will be returning the Pace STB soon, and that should remove the $10 HDTV charge from my bill.