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8300HD and External SATA - It Works!! - Page 300

post #8971 of 8998
Has anyone tested the following combination:
Vendor: Cox
DVR: SA8260
OS: PowerTV 6.20.75.106sp
Passport Echo: 3.1.124

I used the drive that others recommended for earlier versions of Passport, WD Caviar Black WD1001FAEX, in an eSATA enclosure. It recognized it, formatted it (only a few minutes which I thought was odd) and added space to the available space and all looked good. After a week problems started happening. It would disappear sporadically and the available space would drop back to just the internal drive. Shows would get intermittent freezes and sometimes thaws. Then automatic reboots after a freeze. Then it when into a boot loop. Right now it can not boot the DVR with the drive attached. I validated the drive was OK through my PC. I even wrote a full NTFS format (took 8 hours). I realize that the DVR is not using NTFS, but I thought it would kick in a reformat. It didn't and it won't now boot at all.Suggestions?
post #8972 of 8998
Is the Cox SA8260 supposed to be one of the boxes that works with the external? I think there is actually a pretty narrow range of what will work.
post #8973 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by NCguy2 View Post

Is the Cox SA8260 supposed to be one of the boxes that works with the external? I think there is actually a pretty narrow range of what will work.

As far as I know, there is no model SA8260. You better double-check that model number. And, be sure to add the "HDC" if it is there.
post #8974 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by domino92024 View Post

As far as I know, there is no model SA8260. You better double-check that model number. And, be sure to add the "HDC" if it is there.

I don't personally have one. I was responding to Paul's post #8972 who apparently does and he can't reliably get his external drive to work.
post #8975 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by NCguy2 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by domino92024 View Post

As far as I know, there is no model SA8260. You better double-check that model number. And, be sure to add the "HDC" if it is there.

I don't personally have one. I was responding to Paul's post #8972 who apparently does and he can't reliably get his external drive to work.

Well, there IS an Explorer 8240HDC which needs a firmware update to use an external drive, but Cisco/SA didn't make an SA8260 with or without the "HDC."
post #8976 of 8998
Actually I fat-fingered the model. It is an SA Explorer 8240HDC which is listed in a post by CoxPHX.
post #8977 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by domino92024 View Post

Well, there IS an Explorer 8240HDC which needs a firmware update to use an external drive, but Cisco/SA didn't make an SA8260 with or without the "HDC."

So since he says its actually the 8240HDC is it possible for him to determine if its had the update and if not update it himself?
post #8978 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by NCguy2 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by domino92024 View Post

Well, there IS an Explorer 8240HDC which needs a firmware update to use an external drive, but Cisco/SA didn't make an SA8260 with or without the "HDC."

So since he says its actually the 8240HDC is it possible for him to determine if its had the update and if not update it himself?

The firmware revision version is given in the diagnostic section. No, he cannot update it himself. A firmware update must be pushed by the cable company.
post #8979 of 8998
What firmware version do I need? The DVR INFO panel says the firmware is 3.ACH
Edited by Paul Pendle - 12/16/12 at 7:20am
post #8980 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Pendle View Post

What firmware version do I need? The DVR INFO panel says the firmware is 3.ACH

What DVR/firmware are you using? Passport Echo? SARA? I'm not at all familiar with "The DVR INFO panel says the firmware is 3.ACH" ???

Passport Vers: 3.1.124
OS Vers: (did not change, PowerTV 6.20.75.106sp)
post #8981 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Pendle View Post

Has anyone tested the following combination:
Vendor: Cox
DVR: SA8260
OS: PowerTV 6.20.75.106sp
Passport Echo: 3.1.124
I used the drive that others recommended for earlier versions of Passport, WD Caviar Black WD1001FAEX, in an eSATA enclosure. It recognized it, formatted it (only a few minutes which I thought was odd) and added space to the available space and all looked good. After a week problems started happening. It would disappear sporadically and the available space would drop back to just the internal drive. Shows would get intermittent freezes and sometimes thaws. Then automatic reboots after a freeze. Then it when into a boot loop. Right now it can not boot the DVR with the drive attached. I validated the drive was OK through my PC. I even wrote a full NTFS format (took 8 hours). I realize that the DVR is not using NTFS, but I thought it would kick in a reformat. It didn't and it won't now boot at all.Suggestions?

Paul, what City are you In? And did you ask Cox to send the current software, or did it just come with that SW.

I still have my Cox DVR, an SA8240HDC, It is running the same software as you are.

Versions:
ResApp Version: Passport Echo 3.1.124
OS Version: PowerTV 6.20.75.106sp


The fact that the DVR first recognized and formatted the Ext HDD, and worked for a week, would seem to indicate your DVR has the correct software.
Connecting it to the PC and formatting in NTFS, should have Prompted the DVR to Reformat when reconnected.
I would check your eSATA cable make sure it is seated properly, perhaps try a different cable.
The problem could be the enclosure or Power Supply of the enclosure, or even the DVR itself.

The proper Power Up Sequence for a Formatting with Passport is:
Power up DVR first, wait for it to boot and display video.
Second Power up the Ext HDD, and you should get the prompt.
post #8982 of 8998
I am in Phoenix with Cox Communications.

I cleaned up the recorded shows that still said they were on the external drive and then I restarted everything from scratch. I checked the eSata cable connections and started the devices up as you said Brian and it asked me to format the drive and asked me "are you sure". So it formatted in less than a minute (still odd). I am currently recording two HD shows and chasing one and everything is working. Here is a screen shot of the DVR SATA info which is good. dvrscreen.png 1291k .png file

Now I need to see how it behaves over the next week. If it fails again I will take the DVR back to COX. It had some anomalous behaviour before I attached the drive as it would occasionally freeze when I use the 10 second back button and would take 2 or three minutes to thaw. So maybe there is something fundamentally wrong with the DVR.
post #8983 of 8998
Paul,
The DVR Formatting is not like Windows, I believe all it does is delete the indexing and structure, the DVR uses a form of Linux I believe.
If you end up replacing the DVR, you will need to get another silver 8240HDC and probably need to ask for the Firmware update on Facebook. Last I heard the Firmware was still considered "beta" also last I heard the newer Black DVR running Rovi Passport, a Cisco 8642HDC, did not have firmware to allow an Ext HDD.

If someone knows otherwise for Phoenix, please advise.
post #8984 of 8998
In the middle of the night, the DVR (mostly) lost connection to the eSATA drive. The space disappeared from Passport screen where it designates capacity and the Diagnostics screen shows no SATA, image attached. nosata.jpg 1430k .jpg file

I said mostly in the prior paragraph because when I turned off the SATA drive with the DVR in this condition it actually recognized the action and gave the message "The external drive has been disconnected. Please reconnect this drive and restart the DVR"

If I call COX regarding this are they simply going to give me the Heisman? Is there anyone there who would know anything about the correct firmware that is needed for this DVR?
post #8985 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Pendle View Post

If I call COX regarding this are they simply going to give me the Heisman? Is there anyone there who would know anything about the correct firmware that is needed for this DVR?
Calling Cox will most likely be a futile effort.
The folks who manage the social media on Facebook and Twitter will know what you need if you ask for the "Beta" Firmware to enable an eSATA External Hard Drive on the 8240HDC
They will need your DVR Serial Number starting with SABxxxxxxx

https://www.facebook.com/CoxArizona

https://twitter.com/CoxArizona_Help

or email them az.coxarizonahelp@cox.com or CoxArizona.Help@cox.com
post #8986 of 8998
Now that hard drives are once again available, any thoughts on good deals for good drives?
post #8987 of 8998
I have had an external drive on my 8300HD for a long time. It finally dies so I am taking the opportunity to hook up some 2TB drives (I have two DVR's). Both DVR's came up with the format option and also the statement that the drive will work. But the capacity graph has not changed on either. I went into the diag menu and I see it lists the drives in device 2 but the capacity says zero. Any suggestions?
post #8988 of 8998
I am fairly certain 1TB is the maximum eSATA Ext HDD recognized by the 8300HD/HDC and 8240HDC, It was when I had one, running both SARA and Passport.
post #8989 of 8998
Hi,
I have a question to which I haven't been able to find any answer.
I have a Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8300HD from Rogers. Can an external hard drive be used with it WITHOUT the internal drive?
I first tried it with the internal drive still connected, and it said it would format the external drive, and then said that it was working, though there was no other obvious indication that anything happened; it seemed far too quick for a format to have occurred.
Trying it without the internal drive, the system formats the external one (taking quite almost 10 minutes, which is what I would have expected the first time), but once the box starts up, it tells me there is a problem with the storage device; I don't know if that's because it doesn't like the external drive for whatever reason, or if it doesn't like the absence of the internal drive.

Thanks for any help.
post #8990 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by spu42 View Post

Hi,
I have a question to which I haven't been able to find any answer.
I have a Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8300HD from Rogers. Can an external hard drive be used with it WITHOUT the internal drive?
I first tried it with the internal drive still connected, and it said it would format the external drive, and then said that it was working, though there was no other obvious indication that anything happened; it seemed far too quick for a format to have occurred.
Trying it without the internal drive, the system formats the external one (taking quite almost 10 minutes, which is what I would have expected the first time), but once the box starts up, it tells me there is a problem with the storage device; I don't know if that's because it doesn't like the external drive for whatever reason, or if it doesn't like the absence of the internal drive.

Thanks for any help.

The format WITH the internal drive in takes just seconds. To confirm it is successfully working you should just simply check the percentage of storage space available before and after. I have no idea why you would want to take out the internal drive. I suspect that the DVR won't operate without the internal drive as your experience shows.
post #8991 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGA$$TV View Post

The format WITH the internal drive in takes just seconds. To confirm it is successfully working you should just simply check the percentage of storage space available before and after. I have no idea why you would want to take out the internal drive. I suspect that the DVR won't operate without the internal drive as your experience shows.

I suspect the internal drive is starting to fail. Recordings are pausing and jumping during playback with increasing regularity, even though the live broadcast was fine. IDE drives are harder to come by now, and I had a spare SATA drive I wanted to use as a replacement. Various posts on this forum show that use of an SATA-to-IDE adapter has come to little success, so I was hoping I could use it externally and remove the failing drive.

I'll try with both drives again and confirm the percentage of free space changes. Hopefully that will at least tell me if the unit is working with the drive in some cpacity.
post #8992 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by spu42 View Post

I'll try with both drives again and confirm the percentage of free space changes. Hopefully that will at least tell me if the unit is working with the drive in some cpacity.
My first 1TB external drive, installed several years ago, started failing about a year ago, so I unplugged it and tried to run on just the 8300HD's internal drive. It worked fairly well for a few months, but then its recordings started showing signs of failure as well. I knew the DVR stores its index of recordings on the internal drive, so I started marking programs that showed the worst problems to be kept until manually erased -- essentially, "forever". I hoped that would effectively keep the bad sectors from being used to hold part of the DVR's index. I ended up with something like 40% of the internal drive made unavailable for new recordings.

Then I purchased a 1TB WD SATA drive on eBay to repair my external hard drive, and now my DVR has lots of spare capacity again.

If you have some "good" recordings on your internal drive, and mark the "bad" ones for indefinite retention, this may help ensure that your DVR will have a good chance of success with that (1TB or smaller) external drive.
post #8993 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron-on-Mrng-Vsta View Post

My first 1TB external drive, installed several years ago, started failing about a year ago, so I unplugged it and tried to run on just the 8300HD's internal drive. It worked fairly well for a few months, but then its recordings started showing signs of failure as well. I knew the DVR stores its index of recordings on the internal drive, so I started marking programs that showed the worst problems to be kept until manually erased -- essentially, "forever". I hoped that would effectively keep the bad sectors from being used to hold part of the DVR's index. I ended up with something like 40% of the internal drive made unavailable for new recordings.

Then I purchased a 1TB WD SATA drive on eBay to repair my external hard drive, and now my DVR has lots of spare capacity again.

If you have some "good" recordings on your internal drive, and mark the "bad" ones for indefinite retention, this may help ensure that your DVR will have a good chance of success with that (1TB or smaller) external drive.

Can you even get 8300HD's any longer? Is there any chance of getting one with a usable internal drive?
post #8994 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by NCguy2 View Post

Can you even get 8300HD's any longer? Is there any chance of getting one with a usable internal drive?
I was responding to spu42, who (like me) already has an SA8300HD, and would like to be able to keep it running, even though the internal drive is showing some signs of failure. I described the steps I have taken to accomplish that. (I'm in the US, so I cannot open the box to run diagnostic tests on the internal drive to see how many bad sectors it has. spu42 is in Canada, and might be able to do that.)
post #8995 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron-on-Mrng-Vsta View Post

I was responding to spu42, who (like me) already has an SA8300HD, and would like to be able to keep it running, even though the internal drive is showing some signs of failure. I described the steps I have taken to accomplish that. (I'm in the US, so I cannot open the box to run diagnostic tests on the internal drive to see how many bad sectors it has. spu42 is in Canada, and might be able to do that.)
post #8996 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron-on-Mrng-Vsta View Post

My first 1TB external drive, installed several years ago, started failing about a year ago, so I unplugged it and tried to run on just the 8300HD's internal drive. It worked fairly well for a few months, but then its recordings started showing signs of failure as well. I knew the DVR stores its index of recordings on the internal drive, so I started marking programs that showed the worst problems to be kept until manually erased -- essentially, "forever". I hoped that would effectively keep the bad sectors from being used to hold part of the DVR's index. I ended up with something like 40% of the internal drive made unavailable for new recordings.

Then I purchased a 1TB WD SATA drive on eBay to repair my external hard drive, and now my DVR has lots of spare capacity again.

If you have some "good" recordings on your internal drive, and mark the "bad" ones for indefinite retention, this may help ensure that your DVR will have a good chance of success with that (1TB or smaller) external drive.

I was considering something like that if I couldn't get an external-only setup working. Maybe make one long recording that fills up the internal drive so I now all future recordings will go to the external.
At least I confirmed that the external does get recognised. When I connect it, the used space decreases from 46% to 14%. Yet to prove that a recording saved there will properly play back.
post #8997 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by spu42 View Post

I was considering something like that if I couldn't get an external-only setup working. Maybe make one long recording that fills up the internal drive so I now all future recordings will go to the external.
At least I confirmed that the external does get recognised. When I connect it, the used space decreases from 46% to 14%. Yet to prove that a recording saved there will properly play back.
It used to always write to the drive with the greater percentage space available. So, the recordings should be going to the external drive. Internal still keeps the settings. Maybe need to find a parallel drive and just replace (since you can in Canada). /Dan
post #8998 of 8998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan_CoxPHX View Post



The proper Power Up Sequence for a Formatting with Passport is:
Power up DVR first, wait for it to boot and display video.
Second Power up the Ext HDD, and you should get the prompt.

 

   Just wanted to thank Bryan for this PUS information! It is the reverse of the instructions given on the SA8300 site, and also the reverse of the info supplied by Cablevison tech support. And it worked! I finally go the "do you want to format?" message. Thanks again! g

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