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eSATA - Has been enabled, but....

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Tips and Resources' started by Earl Bonovich, Oct 4, 2006.

  1. funhouse69

    funhouse69 Icon

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    Mar 26, 2007
    The short answer in my opinion is no - I've got as mentioned previously in this thread and in my signature a Seagate 750Gb connected to my HR20 and I've had it up to 80% capacity which believe me a LOT of HD Programming. I haven't noticed any performance hit at all.

    That said I have heard of some people here that are using external RAID units that offer as much as 3Tb of Storage. I'd be very curious to hear their experience on this. They more than anyone would be able to shed some light on this.

    BTW - I should mention that everything that I've recorded has been HD Content which includes national, local and OTA so MPEG 2 & 4 but SD whatsoever. I've got 2 SD Direc-TiVO's for that. I will eventually retire one of the TiVO's and get another HR20 to replace it. Probably as soon as the new bird goes up which should.
     
  2. Boleyc

    Boleyc Legend

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    Mar 5, 2007
    Tom, any update on your efforts to use the FreeAgent Pro?
     
  3. Tom M

    Tom M Legend

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    Jan 3, 2007
    I've got it installed and it's working just fine, thank you. Mine sits outside the entertainment center so I don't have any heat issue, though I may get out some electrical tape to reduce the amount of orange light it produces. All things considered it's a worth while investment.
     
  4. scottp461

    scottp461 Mentor

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    Sep 7, 2006
    My 1st HR20-100 suffered a fatal tuner 2 malfunction only 2 hours after initial power up, about 20 minutes after activation (it took a while!). A replacement is on the way, but this brings me to a question. How long should I wait before adding an eSATA drive to a new HR20-100? I know that you can't move the drive around between different units, but what, if any, problem is there with moving it to a new unit if the unit it was originally used with fails? Will it reformat when attached to the new one or will it need to be reformatted on a PC before it is attached? Or is there no way to "start from scratch", as it were, with a different HR20?
     
  5. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    26,992
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    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    Have been using the Cavalry ESATAs for several months and have gone thru seven or eight until finally getting updated units. These seem to have the noise problem licked, but I will have to use them for several months before I will trust them.

    Anyhow, thru all the changes, my DVRs have kept the series links and the settings have remained the same. I just shut off one ESATA the other day so I could watch a movie on the internal HD and when I restored the ESATA the settings were unchanged.
     
  6. djt813

    djt813 Cool Member

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    May 22, 2007
    Just got my HR20-700 and ready to expand storage capacity. I'm considering a 750 GB drive and a Raid 0 setup with dual 500 GB drives.

    I like the Seagate FreeAgent 750 GM, but heard it gets a little hot and has no fan. Anyone have an update on heat issues? Do the Thecus, or other Raid capable enclosures, do better with heat?

    Last, heard differing opinions on performance gains for FastPlay 1/2/3/4 when adding external Raid 0. Anyone want to chime in an opinion?

    Derek
     
  7. Cyrus

    Cyrus Godfather

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    Oct 22, 2006
    It won't reformat automatically, all the recordings from the previous unit will show up but you won't be able to play them. You can reformat it via rebooting hr20 and pushing REC and "down arrow" buttons simultaneously (the REC button will become red when the reformatting happens). "Reset Everything" option can also be used to reformat the drive but that is more drastic and will force you to go through the satellite setup and other stuff.
     
  8. rblancojr

    rblancojr Cool Member

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    Jan 4, 2007
    I have not hung around the forums here for many months, especially since I had put off getting HD from D* for various reasons.

    I do recall reading about little issues here and there with the HR20. My question is, has anything changed in the last 4 or 5 months? Have bugs and other hiccups when using external drives gone away, gotten better...or worse?:eek2:

    Please let me know your thoughts. I have mine being installed on May 31st and want to be ready for when I install the external Seagate drive.

    Richard
     
  9. John4924

    John4924 Icon

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    Mar 19, 2007
    FWIW, I have 3 HR20-700s, and two of them have external 750 GB Seagate drives. They have been in operation for about 2 months, and I have NOT had a single problem. I have even powered the units down, removed the external eSata, powered back up, and the recordings, etc. are still on the internal drive. I then power it down again, plug in and power up external eSata, power up HR20, and everything on the eSata is there as before. I have done this numerous times without any problems. [This boot cycle takes about 6 minutes for me]

    Now if we could only get the units in my home networked, and play ANY program from ANY HR20, from ANY drive [internal or external], THAT would be fantastic! :D

    I think you will be really pleased with this unit.

    Cheers,
    John
     
  10. rblancojr

    rblancojr Cool Member

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    Jan 4, 2007
    John, have you ever tried moving one of the externals to a different HR20? If so, will the "other" HR20 read and play the content?

    Also, what is your approximation on the amount of HD recording time that you get with the 720GB external? I know this depends on compression, but asking in case I decided to get two of the 720GB in a RAID setup.

    Regards,
    Richard
     
  11. pjo1966

    pjo1966 Godfather

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    Nov 20, 2005
    If I were to get an eSATA enclosure that held two drives, would it matter whether or not the drives were the same size? I have a 300GB drive sitting on my desk and would like to pair it with a 750GB drive. Is there any reason why this would not work?
     
  12. djt813

    djt813 Cool Member

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    May 22, 2007
    Think Raid settings (both 0 and 1) effectively require same size drives, or else will only use 300GB of the larger drive, thus losing the extra 450GB you would purchase. Might work with concatenate setting?
     
  13. John4924

    John4924 Icon

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    Mar 19, 2007
    I have not tried moving one to another HR20 because I have read here that the external hard drive is "coded" to the individual HR20. I was told that if you did do this, the "different" HR20 would reformat the drive to work with this individual unit. I guess this is "protection" to keep someone from moving their coded HD content to just about anwhere.

    You need to realize that Directv keeps ~100GB of drive space for future use (VOD, etc.) so from a 750 GB hard drive, you have ~650 GB left for recording. Based on stream bit rates for some OTA channels here in New Orleans, I calculated that using ~6.5 GB/hr is a good approximation. So I assume 100 hrs of MPEG2, and 150 hrs of MPEG4 on a 750 GB drive.

    Hope this helps :)

    Cheers,
    John
     
  14. elixir26

    elixir26 Legend

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    Mar 9, 2007
    You should be able to do it with an enclosure that supports JBOD. (Just a Bunch Of Drives) Your system will be as reliable as the weakest drive...:)

    Cheers
     
  15. Cyrus

    Cyrus Godfather

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    Oct 22, 2006
    I have tried this. It doesn't reformat the disk, but it gives you errors if you attempt to playback any of the recordings (some kind of authorization failure). You can go back to the original hr20 and play them back OK.
     
  16. John4924

    John4924 Icon

    606
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    Mar 19, 2007
    Thanks for the answer. This is good to know! :)

    Cheers,
    John
     
  17. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    Problems with heat? I am thinking of getting a couple of them if my Cavalry upgraded units go South. Have read reports of the Seagate ESATA running very hot.
     
  18. mgroups

    mgroups AllStar

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    Apr 27, 2007
    I connected a Seagate Freeagent 750GB drive to my HR20-100 using the proper power up and connection sequence. The HR20 does not move the existing playlist or copy the recordings to the Freeagent. The playlist appears as blank, but then, when I record a show, that show shows up on the otherwise empty playlist. Any ideas what the problem is?
     
  19. lucky13

    lucky13 New Member

    2,057
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    Nov 27, 2006
    Maryland,...
    There is no problem. That's how it works.

    Your prior recordings and SLs are saved on the internal drive.
    If you need to access them, you need to power up (unplug the DVR) with the ESATA disconnected from the dvr.

    There are many posts in this thread on this topic.
     
  20. mgroups

    mgroups AllStar

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    Apr 27, 2007
    Lucky13, thanks for the quick response. I read the thread quite a while ago and only copied down notes on the starting sequence. I thought everything got copied to the eSATA.

    So I was planning to return the drive because I thought it was not acting right with the HR20 and also because it was not working right with a PC (tried with two PCs and two USB cables). The drive shows up as new hardware and is listed in Device Manager, but no drive letter shows up and it does not show up in Disk Management. I wonder if that is a result of something the HR20 did to it.

    Has anyone else tried connecting the Freeagent drive to a PC with a USB cable after using it with the HR20?

    By the way, the drive is 199.00 at BB today and tomorrow.

    Edit: I hooked up the drive to my PC again and now it shows up in Disk Management, with three "Unknown Partition"s and about 702GB of total storage. So apparently the HR20 reformatted the drive in a format not understood by Windows and/or the BIOS. If I wanted to use it as a computer drive in the future I could presumably reformat it as an NTFS or FAT drive in Disk Management and it would then be assigned a drive letter for each partition.

    I meant to save the software that came with the drive to another drive prior to hooking it up to the HR20. Oh well.
     

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