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How do you recover deleted hard drive data on a h2160mw9 magnavox recorder

post #1 of 43
Thread Starter 
how do you recover deleated titles (data) on the magnavox h2160mw9 dvd/rw 180 hdd recorder.

I pulled a dummy this morning (thought I was erasing data from a dvd) and erased over 36 recorded shows from the hard drive in one stupid button push.

Most of this stuff I can not re-record to disk, as I deleted the originals from the cable hard drive.

Please tell me there is a way to recover these programs/data...
I have not recorded anything to the drive since then...
I am hoping that worse case I can pull the drive and use a PC undelete tool to restore these ....

I need options fast, as I have a hugh recording backlog that NEEDS to be moved to dvd disk.

Found a lot of interesting stuff here before and again while looking this morning. But nothing on my problem.

Might add that the Official funai support center phone call was a total dead end. The tech was playing dumber then a rock.
It is a weekend and the local service shops are weekday only bankers hours.
The Magnavox phone support tech refused to acknoledge that they even had a dvr with a hard drive even after I read him the box... (amazing how this happens. ) Same with the web site.

help!!! Prettty please!!!???
post #2 of 43
As awful as it sounds I think you're SOL
DVDRs record in a proprietary format that's not easily read on a standard computer. Here's a link to a thread where someone was able to read information from his HDD but it was a Panasonic, not sure if the Maggy would be similar or not. I've not seen a similar thread talking about a Funai DVDR. Also note even if you're able to see the drive on your PC you still have to contend with having to recover the deleted files. You said you haven't recorded on the drive since your incident, but doesn't the Maggy automatically record a buffer when it's powered on? This feature might have already written over some of your information. Good luck
post #3 of 43
Unfortunately, you'll have to chalk this up as a bitterly hard-won lesson: DVD/HDD recorders are absolutely unforgiving of accidental deletions. There is no way back: none. The drives store video files as scattered little bits under a proprietary Unix-based file system. The recorder has no way to recover them once they're flagged as deleted, and recovery using a PC is a very time consuming process (recovery/reconstruction of a single title is known to take days or weeks, 36 titles would take the rest of your life: forget it.) And as jjeff mentioned, your particular model has a constantly replenishing buffer to allow chase-play of anything showing on your TV. That buffer has likely overwritten all your deleted titles by now, making recovery attempts moot. Believe me, I sympathize, having done this a few times myself: its a complete mystery why none of these machines has an "undelete title" function, considering how easy it is to accidentally erase a title on most of them. Really poor design choice.

The Magnavox is possibly the most heavily documented DVD/HDD recorder of all time, thanks to the efforts of wajo here on AVS. If he does not post here with a solution for you, you'll just have to accept the loss.
post #4 of 43
No solution here.
post #5 of 43
Thread Starter 
URRRGGGHHH!!!
QUICK LESSON IN HOW TO BECOME A REAL DUMB DUMMY WITHOUT EVEN REALLY TRYING!! Guess I will have to go find a quiet corner someplace and commit suicide. I sorrly love these recorders to death. But this design flaw takes the cake...
Thank you all for the fast reply... Even if it was bad news bears... You would have thought that they would have designed things better... Like putting the chase data into a seperate special partition of the hard drive. or not adding a warning like "do you really want to deleate the entire contents of the hard drive menu y/n" button... Is there a chance that the funai folks would ever look at this board before they build the next software design outline? I tried to clue the support techs I talked to, but they wouldn't even let me tell them the url of this board..
Just snooty poo pooed the very mention that they might learn something. They did admit under detailed grilling that thier only reference source they are allowed to use is the manual that is sent with the machines. Gee, like that wasn't the first place I checked, then the online PDF, then the rest of the company site then about 20 goggle suggested pages...

But kept coming back to you folks as you have compiled about the difinitive reference to these machines. Be proud of yourselves.

Surprised no one has asked this before though... Might be worth a investigate after all unix is unix and the machine language is the same as DOS. It IS IBM DOS. maybe we can find someone who has replaced the smaller drive, who has language experience, to do some poking around on the old replaced drives to see what is there...

Too late for me... My cable drive boxes are overfull and need to be transfered today before 8pm. Shame that it can only be done on hour at a time real time, and not digitally in a minute or so... What is up with that reason? Encouraging /discouraging t6he purpose that these boxes were made to do? record programs to disk? So that they could be preserved and enjoyed at a latter time, like near forever? Up till now that had been my only and biggest gripe. I could work around minor faults... But the time thing has been a real time stealer. I find myself constantly fighting the time clock...

Rant over. Thank you again for the fast help....
Now does anyone have a dvd copy of season three heros? I lost at least 6 episodes.
post #6 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by PAULKOPERA View Post

URRRGGGHHH!!!
QUICK LESSON IN HOW TO BECOME A REAL DUMB DUMMY WITHOUT EVEN REALLY TRYING!! Guess I will have to go find a quiet corner someplace and commit suicide. I sorrly love these recorders to death. But this design flaw takes the cake...

"Design flaw" my ass???

The only two ways you could have deleted a LOT of titles on the HDD is individually or after marking each title with the Delete Multiple Titles command (a long, time-consuming process in itself), OR with the HDD Menu > Delete all Titles command....

BOTH of which have a Yes/No dialog, FOLLLOWED by an "Are You Sure?" dialog!

In fact, the HDD Menu > Delete All Titles option has an initial Yes/No dialog that repeats the action question, "Delete entire titles?".
post #7 of 43
For the prices these go for, I really think you're expecting too much for them to have those features. Even the $600.-$1000. models a few years ago weren't designed to recover deleted recordings. And all recorders can only record from other ones in real time.

Just go to Blockbuster and rent those episodes, if they have them. Or check Hulu.com, or other sites like that.
post #8 of 43
My local library carries Heros on DVD, you might want to check yours. Of course you'd need a filter if you wanted to copy them
Personally that's the way I get most of my TV programs I want to keep, I hate all the station bugs and crap they put over the program when broadcast. The DVDs in contrast are great quality and void of screen clutter.
post #9 of 43
I've found that if I'm determined to do something stupid, including the deletion of a hard drive title that I haven't yet burned to DVD (and even after twice being asked to confirm the deletion) I usually succeed at being stupid.

A TV show? Now if it was something rare and obscure licensed for a single showing on TCM I could understand the angst, but a TV show?

Even Alfred Hitchcock referred to his own creation(s) as "just a movie."
post #10 of 43
Well, you've got nothing to lose now, so try what has been posted in the Panasonic HDD recovery post. Even if it is some weird proprietary implementation of linux, you should be able to image all the content from the drive to a separate drive, using a free program like WinHex. Whatever erasure you did certainly changed the file table/pointers, so even with a standard linux file explorer, it likely wouldn't be able to find any files... you'd need some sort of recovery program. However, if it's similar to the Panasonic structure, given enough free time you can get everything back.
post #11 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by PAULKOPERA View Post

It IS IBM DOS. maybe we can find someone who has replaced the smaller drive, who has language experience, to do some poking around on the old replaced drives to see what is there...

Its hard to grasp the issue with recorder HDD recovery, even computer geeks scratch their heads, but since you apparently need some more info for "closure":

It doesn't matter at all that these recorders use a variation of Unix to store video on the hard drive, because the OS isn't the problem. The problem is the way they use Unix to store and retrieve video. A typical hour drama like your lost "Heroes" episode is often scattered in a dozen or three dozen or a hundred file snippets all over the drive, depending on the mfr design and/or how often you've used the HDD and how much editing you generally do. These little pieces don't have decent filenames "Video Title 001: Piece 0056", that would give you a shot at simple reconstruction. Instead the video names are gibberish variants on hexadecimal. Piecing them back together requires a lot of time, abundant patience, no small amount of skill, and a pretty expensive specialized hex editor running under Unix. This is only worth doing for truly irreplaceable personal videos or broadcasts that will never ever see the light of day again. Piecing the video back together is only the beginning, there are further steps to turn the file into something that can be recognized by a PC as video and turned into a DVD.

In 999 of 1000 cases, its simpler to just ask around online for someone who might have what you lost and be willing to share it, or buy/rent a commercial release. It just isn't practical to recover these drives. I truly admire the few people who are off on a side thread here on AVS, jabbering about how they accomplished it with their Panasonics. I also think they're out of their cotton pickin minds, not for any amount of money would I aggravate myself with that task.
post #12 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post

...The only two ways you could have deleted a LOT of titles on the HDD is individually or after marking each title with the Delete Multiple Titles command (a long, time-consuming process in itself), OR with the HDD Menu > Delete all Titles command...

A third way, and perhaps the easiest, would be with the V.SKIP 079 menu if you didn't know what you were doing or weren't paying attention. I haven't formatted my HDD yet, but I assume there's no Yes/No confirmation in this service menu since Joe Schmo consumer doesn't even know how to get into it in the first place.
post #13 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by PAULKOPERA View Post

how do you recover deleated titles (data) on the magnavox h2160mw9 dvd/rw 180 hdd recorder...

  • Quote:
    Originally Posted by PAULKOPERA View Post

    ...I pulled a dummy this morning (thought I was erasing data from a dvd) and erased over 36 recorded shows from the hard drive in one stupid button push...

    You thought you had 36 recorded shows on *ONE* DVD? That should have been your first hint.

    IMHO, you pushed more than ONE button - maybe (at least) 38?
    .
  • Quote:
    Originally Posted by PAULKOPERA View Post

    URRRGGGHHH!!!
    QUICK LESSON IN HOW TO BECOME A REAL DUMB DUMMY WITHOUT EVEN REALLY TRYING!!

    Don't be so modest - you *REALLY* tried!
    .
  • Quote:
    Originally Posted by PAULKOPERA View Post

    ...But this design flaw takes the cake...

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wajo View Post

    "Design flaw" my ass???

    The only two ways you could have deleted a LOT of titles on the HDD is individually or after marking each title with the Delete Multiple Titles command (a long, time-consuming process in itself), OR with the HDD Menu > Delete all Titles command....

    BOTH of which have a Yes/No dialog, FOLLLOWED by an "Are You Sure?" dialog!

+1

We learn through our mistakes...

What consistently puzzles me is HOW MUCH an anonymous person will admit to doing.

HECK! I'll GOOGLE / SEARCH for days / weeks before asking a question on a public forum.
post #14 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

...DVD/HDD recorders are absolutely unforgiving of accidental deletions. There is no way back: none...

(PROBABLY) NOT (ABSOLUTELY) TRUE!

A Funai engineer could 'probably' come up with a way, given enough TIME and MONEY.
post #15 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by ClearToLand View Post

A Funai engineer could 'probably' come up with a way, given enough TIME and MONEY.

Don't bet on it: they managed to totally screw up the recorder during its second production run, and have yet to acknowledge their mistake or offer a firmware fix. Six months ago we thought they were stalling until they could distribute the fix, now most of us are convinced Funai has no idea how they effed up a simple machine they made perfectly the year before. Engineers who can screw up a the finalization command of an existing model are unlikely to have HDD recovery skills.
post #16 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Don't bet on it: they managed to totally screw up the recorder during its second production run, and have yet to acknowledge their mistake or offer a firmware fix. Six months ago we thought they were stalling until they could distribute the fix, now most of us are convinced Funai has no idea how they effed up a simple machine they made perfectly the year before. Engineers who can screw up a the finalization command of an existing model are unlikely to have HDD recovery skills.

Some time ago we heard the news from Philips that there would be no more (recorder) development after September 2008. By that time the 2160 "A" version was probably an untested prototype transitioned from the original 2160 design. The software was, by that time, hastily "completed." Then, perhaps, the development folks got pink slips. Then the untested 2160 "A" went into production in March 2009. Since that time the 2160 "A" purchasers have been the "beta testers." That situation continues to the present day.

One would think that Funai has enough intellectual breadth and depth to correct the problems inherited from Philips. After all, this isn't rocket science and this shouldn't require Funai to "reinvent the wheel." But, perhaps, Funai doesn't find enough cost/benefit to remedy the 2160 "A" problems. With the passage of time a remedy seems less and less likely.
post #17 of 43
>>Engineers who can screw up a the finalization command of an existing model <<

ummm....what finalization command issue would that be? I have an A model, date stamp on the back of the chassis is March 09. I've recorded several disks, TDK -Rs. The finaization routine completes correctly and the disks play on the Mag, on my Toshiba 660 combi and on an elderly Daewoo player.

I bought the Maggy as an OEM refurb from an online retailer, so maybe they did develop a fix, but don't make it available to the public?
post #18 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve203 View Post

>>Engineers who can screw up a the finalization command of an existing model <<

ummm....what finalization command issue would that be? I have an A model, date stamp on the back of the chassis is March 09. I've recorded several disks, TDK -Rs. The finaization routine completes correctly and the disks play on the Mag, on my Toshiba 660 combi and on an elderly Daewoo player.

I bought the Maggy as an OEM refurb from an online retailer, so maybe they did develop a fix, but don't make it available to the public?

Read the special note on the 2160A.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=940657
post #19 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve203 View Post

ummm....what finalization command issue would that be? I have an A model, date stamp on the back of the chassis is March 09. I've recorded several disks, TDK -Rs. The finaization routine completes correctly and the disks play on the Mag, on my Toshiba 660 combi and on an elderly Daewoo player.

I bought the Maggy as an OEM refurb from an online retailer, so maybe they did develop a fix, but don't make it available to the public?

DVD writing, dubbing, finalization and formatting fails if there are timer programs scheduled with 2160 "A" versions (manufactured in March and May 2009). These issues have been discussed in great detail in this thread:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=940657

If your 2160 "A" version does not have these issues, you are the first to report a "corrected" machine.

TDK DVD-R discs are the same CMC MAG. AM3 media as Memorex DVD-R discs.
post #20 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigaDo View Post

DVD writing, dubbing, finalization and formatting fails if there are timer programs scheduled with 2160 "A" versions (manufactured in March and May 2009). These issues have been discussed in great detail in this thread:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=940657

If your 2160 "A" version does not have these issues, you are the first to report a "corrected" machine.

TDK DVD-R discs are the same CMC MAG. AM3 media as Memorex DVD-R discs.

AFAIK, in the "A" version, only Finalization, RW Formatting and RW Erasing fail if timer rec program(s) are set... basically, any op in the Disc Edit menu.

The error number, E19, that comes up with those disc ops is "Safety Stop occurs during editing", i.e., Disc Edit menu items. These are disc ops that require a certain amount of time before a timer rec start time before it allows that op (15 min. for Format and 1-hour for Finalize). This bug allows that op to start but can't complete it... stops at ~90% point.

Recording and dubbing to DVD are OK with timers set.
post #21 of 43
"AFAIK, in the "A" version, only Finalization, RW Formatting and RW Erasing fail if timer rec program(s) are set... basically, any op in the Disc Edit menu."

Ah. I haven't tried to finalize a disk while the timer was set. Back in the day, I had VCRs that would do nothing when the timer was set, so I assumed the Maggy would behave the same.
post #22 of 43
Guess we know who tested the 'A' firmware...it was Steve!
post #23 of 43
Its good that you haven't write anything after you cleaned your data. Since once rewritten it becomes a permanent loss. You may search for Hard Drive recovery software by Stellar Phoenix to recover your data in their original format. Don't lose hope U can get it back .

All the best
post #24 of 43
Except he deleted the data in August of 2009. He probably has written to the drive since then.
post #25 of 43
Thread Starter 
THANKS FOR THE CONTINUED INTEREST IN THIS SUBJECT. Your supposistion is correct, I took a total lose on this problem ( and it was mt fault (I must have been half asleep orbrain farting when I did it)... BASICICALLY HAD TO START FROM SCRATCH. The drive itself I discovered was writen in raw format, not DOS or anything more sufisticated... not worth the bother. Nope not seperate partition for operating system, or cache for currently recording program.

Note: that this machines rw drive drive stopped working on christmas day. It still writes to some r- disks but no longer works for rw- writing at all. Just out of warrenty (cause I didn't call it in when the problem first started) but the local authorized repair place says not problem to fix. Got magnavox to cover the parts cost, just have to pay the labor bench cost. I got to get around to taking it in.

(hint the call in center people were very friendly and helpful... you just have to report any problems as soon as they start... they say (told me) as long as they have a record that there is a problem starting they say they will count it as under warrenty... Like mine first started when it refused to write to R/RW plus disks back in oct09 didn't go out of warrenty till late Dec09)

I have purchased a third box, working fine... It is a "a" revision box, and the editing software slipping problem seems to be a fact of life in all of these revision version boxes. otherwise still putting it through a work out/ testing period since it arived this week.

Best I can tell walmart is the only source for purchasing these units. price $227

minor note. It looks like they cleaned up the new manuals since my previous purchase (that booklet was unchanged from the original version printing) of the original release of the "a" box I am using in the bedroom (purchased in april09)... pretty much the same info just better presentation, cleaner font type, easier to under stand language usage, etc...

nothing else to report.
thanks for being there.
post #26 of 43
Note Stellar Phoenix is not freeware or shareware, it costs $79-99 for the Linux version, although at least the price has dropped significantly from last year when it was double that cost. And "data recovery" is not remotely what most users here are looking for: they want a "magic bullet" that simply reverses an accidental deletion. Stellar Phoenix will not do this for you, all it does is make the usually invisible data on a recorder HDD visible and salvageable. Actually piecing together the scattered bits of files into coherent usable video recordings is quite another story: not worth the ridiculous effort unless its the only existing video of your child being born (perhaps not even then). For all practical purposes there really isn't any recovery of deleted files from a recorder HDD.

My favorite urban legend on this topic can be found in the related Panasonic HDD recovery threads, where you have dubious claims of "I used Stellar Phoenix to recover my videos, but I'm also a software engineer for NASA so I knocked off a little additional utility of my own thats absolutely necessary to make recovery truly possible, but I won't share it with anyone here and this is the last post I'll ever make, so just FYI if you have access to a brain trust its kinda sorta doable".

Uh-huh.
post #27 of 43
Well, they user didn't say that exactly, but s/he was a bit cryptic about the whole thing. And considering that is the most important piece in the puzzle, it would make it much easier on everyone if s/he shared that piece of software (and accompanying instructions).

However, I think a 'just as easy' solution was also posted in that thread (or maybe I imagined it). Once the freeware disk reader (I used HxD) is used to gather all the bits up and make an image of the drive, one can then break down the data into the various mpeg video files given the mpeg header string that needs to be found. One could then use VideoReDo to edit specific pieces from the larger files, rather than searching for the string code that specifies which piece goes where, assemblying and viewing to make sure it is correct (this was the time consumer). As the VideoReDo program edits mpeg files without re-encoding (and lets one see what is being edited), just label each cut as pt1, pt2, pt3 and so on, then use a file joiner to join them back into one file. I haven't yet tried this as I am still in the process of transferring my VHS and LD's, but in about 3-4 months I should have the time to tackle this. I have used VideoReDo previously and it's quite easy and works just as described. A GUI interface for this work should cut down the time considerably.
post #28 of 43
I have to agree. For the price we're getting the Maggies for, you can't expect it to do everything everybody would like according to their personal preferences. Even trying to 'undelete' things in a computer requires special software and take a long long time to achieve. Just chalk it down to experience and remember, as I've learned as a long time collector, it all Does come around again, it really does. But will you still care to have it when it does?
Mickboy
post #29 of 43
Paul, try something here only if you really think your Maggy is gone and your sol......
Go to Wajo's help menu at the start of this thread. Open up your Maggy and follow the instructions on checking the connection (ribbon cables etc) inside the box that connect the dvd drive and the hdd. My advise is to also take a good Phillips head screw driver and tighten, NOT overtighten every phillips screw inside that box. There could be a grounding issue, who knows, but there have been numerous issues with very loose to non-connecting ribbon cables to the dvd drive unit and it just may be an issue with your machine. If it's out of warrenty you've really got nothing to loose, just take your time and follow Wajo's instructions. These aren't 2 month old babies, their electronic pieces of made in china gear that you can tinker with, just make sure you purge yourself from any static charge before you start touching the insides and for Heavens sake, disconnect the power plug before you do anything!
Hope it helps.
Mickboy
post #30 of 43
<----------Yes, I am aware this is an old thread. It seems to be my luck that when I run into these and want to respond to them, they're almost always quite old!


Actually, my ilo recorder (which is supposed to be like a LITEON) DOES run on a DOS/Windows-based OS, and I *have* been successful at undeleting videos from its hard drive by putting it into a computer! It was a very rewarding experiment!

I haven't needed to open my RCA or Magnavox machines to try with them, though, but obviously it soulnds like the Magnavox would be a no-go on DOS/Windows. But I have tried with my Philips and Polaroid (like Philips) models, and as far as Windows-based machines go, those two are no-gos. But fortunately I haven't lost much of anything with those. I might try downloading a Linux OS and undeleter and install them sometime just to see how much of a pain that really would be. Fortunately, though, I'm not in the same boat as you are, actually needing the service yet.

What about Macintosh? Linux-based new OS or non-Linux-based older OS, or both, or neither?

I do feel sorry for your loss, Paul.
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