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R15 Harddrive dead, need help


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53 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   SEGA

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Posted 17 June 2008 - 10:28 PM

Ok I need help fixing my Directv Plus+ R15.

It was working fine until I moved it from one room to another, I think I rubbed it against my shirt when walking and static killed the Hard drive.

It's making the clicking noise as if I held a magnet to it and will not load, regardless I know the hard drive is toast.

I can not find an install disc for this thing, I have a 150gig (same as inside the DPR15) but there is nothing about installing a new OS to a New Hard drive so I can get it to work.

I called Directv but they said I own this receiver and can't fix it, but they will send me a refurb for a 2 year extension.. I said No. This is like my 3rd Directv TiVo/DVR in the past 3 years, not going to get an extension to be put back in the same situation months down the road.

I would just buy a new one, but I lost my job 2 months ago and i'm on fundsarelow.


Looking for a way to get a New Hard drive to work with my R15.


Any help would be greatly appreciated.


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#2 OFFLINE   SEGA

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Posted 17 June 2008 - 11:14 PM

I read that post a couple hours ago.

But at the end the guy said he put in a new drive and nothing worked, and nobody replied, so i was wondering if there was something else I had to do.

If it's a simple as putting in a new drive and starting it up, what is the best drive to get..

a 7200 right?

EDIT: um... what happened to the reply to my thread? I just made this reply to a reply, but now it just shows I'm replying to myself?


#3 OFFLINE   Jhon69

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Posted 17 June 2008 - 11:35 PM

I read that post a couple hours ago.

But at the end the guy said he put in a new drive and nothing worked, and nobody replied, so i was wondering if there was something else I had to do.

Is it's a simple as putting in a new drive and starting it up, what is the best drive to get..

a 7200 right?

EDIT: um... what happened to the reply to my thread? I just made this reply to a reply, but now it just shows I'm replying to myself?



I deleted it because I read too fast thought there was an answer.When I realized there wasn't an answer I deleted my post.Suggest you google"Replace hard drive in directv's R15".Good Luck! and:welcome_s

#4 OFFLINE   SEGA

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Posted 17 June 2008 - 11:44 PM

Ya Google was the first place I looked, came up with nothing but the link you posted, reviews, and sales.

I find odd, because allot of people have these R15's but not allot of people try to upgrade.

Upgrading a Directv R15 is like trying to Upgrade a Dell computer.


#5 OFFLINE   Jhon69

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 12:00 AM

Ya Google was the first place I looked, came up with nothing but the link you posted, reviews, and sales.

I find odd, because allot of people have these R15's but not allot of people try to upgrade.

Upgrading a Directv R15 is like trying to Upgrade a Dell computer.



Alot of people did upgrade to the HR20-21's.;)

Some bought DirecTivo's off of Ebay or weaknees.com.;)

Other's have been in the right areas to upgrade to the R22-100's.;)

#6 OFFLINE   dodge boy

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 05:34 AM

you can not increase the recording capacity of an R15. If you replaced the hard drive then restart it and when the screen goes to black (between blue screens) try holding down the record button and the down arrow button on the face of the R15 until the orange light turns on. This formats the drive and should make it compatable with the R15 OS which is downloaded from memory chips in the R15.

I would not consider the TiVo an upgrade... Yes I have both. If your locals come from the 72.5 degree satellite you might want to try to get an R22.

#7 OFFLINE   carl6

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 08:50 AM

The procedure dodge boy outlines should work. Just remember you have to use the same size and type of drive that is already in there, 160GB IDE (parallel ATA) drive.

Install the drive. Power up. When the first blue screen goes away (turns black) push and hold down arrow and record button. Hold for at least 5 seconds, until record light turns on. Let go and let it come up.

Carl

#8 OFFLINE   Doug Brott

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 12:43 PM

I believe that you can use a larger HDD, but the recording capacity will not increase so there is no need to use a larger HDD than what is already in there.

There is no firmware, OS or anything to load onto the HDD. All of that lives in flash memory and the HDD is for storage of your programs. What you will need to do, however is format the HDD. You can do this by using the procedure outlined above by dodge boy.

Please keep in mind that the HDD format could take a long time 1-2 hours. This is because it is a deep format that can be used potentially recover some drives that are having problems.

Please let us know how it goes.

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All comments are my own. Unless specifically stated, my views do NOT represent the views of DIRECTV

#9 OFFLINE   carl6

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 02:29 PM

I believe that you can use a larger HDD, but the recording capacity will not increase so there is no need to use a larger HDD than what is already in there.


I think up to a 250GB drive will work, but the R15/R16 will only use 160GB. I do not think a driver larger than 250GB will work.

#10 OFFLINE   SEGA

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 06:00 PM

Well alright guys thanks for the help.

I put in a new 160gig and it did the "checking disk this could take 30min" because I wanted to see if it would work without the format and it did, but it wouldn't change channels, and was lagging, then it wouldn't turn back on after I turned it off.


But now I did the Reformat and it's doing it's thing (thats what I was looking for)



Thanks for the help, I'm glad I found the right forum.


Update: got to 1% then restarted, now it's doing it's "30 minute scan".

This can't be good. lol


#11 OFFLINE   Jhon69

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 06:27 PM

Thanks to dodge boy,Carl6,and Doug Brott.I searched this forum and came up empty.
This is something that all R15 owners need to know.;) :D

#12 OFFLINE   SEGA

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 08:39 PM

40gig FTW... lol

My other 160hd didn't work either, I think it was one of my bad ones as well.

And sense I'm all out of money...:(

I found a 40gig laying around.

:lol: So I have a 40gig R15... Beat That!! ok ya I know, but hey it works.:grin:


#13 OFFLINE   carl6

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 08:46 PM

So I have a 40gig R15... Beat That!! ok ya I know, but hey it works.:grin:


Hah!

Let us know how it works when it starts to get some programs recorded on it. I'm really wondering if the R15 is smart enough to recognize there is only 40 gig there, or if it will keep trying to record beyond that.

Carl

#14 OFFLINE   SEGA

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 09:12 PM

lmfao recorded a total of 15 minutes, at 98% of space left.

I think I can pull off 1 episode of Star Trek Voyager, and 1 and a half episodes of Friends...




Note: don't hate me because of the shows I record... lol

#15 OFFLINE   xmguy

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 10:37 PM

I've had to replace drives before on my Replay TV DVR. (I know apples and oranges) But would any of these work?

$44 was the lowest listed.

http://www.newegg.co...0GB IDE&x=0&y=0
DirecTV Subscriber Since 3/24/2008 || HR44-500 - SWiM and DECA to Vizio 32" LCD 1080P HDTV (SV320XVT) via HDMI | MY SETUP IN DETAIL UPDATED 3/21/2012 (Q1 2013 | I'm On FACEBOOK! "Originally Posted by xmguy : OK. I need directions. (to Sixto's house) Lol ;) | Originally Posted by Sea bass : Head down to 99c, skip over to 103ca, next over to 103cb and you have arrived.:)":hurah:

#16 OFFLINE   ThomasM

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 02:52 PM

If you really know what you are doing, you can install a new HDD in your R15. The procedure (and a software download you will need) are located elsewhere on DBSTALK.COM, but unfortunately I don't know where! :(

I read the entire thread long ago and in essence you CAN NOT just put a "native" HDD into the R15 and get it to work. HDD's have to be "prepped" and a certain sector written to before they will work in an R15. And you can't use Windows and a PC to do it, either. But you CAN use a PC and that download I mentioned. Apparently, it loads a small version of UNIX on the PC which then lets you prep the drive.

Once the HDD is "R15 ready", you start up the R15 and hold down the RECORD BUTTON and the DOWN ARROW key on the front panel simultaneously for about 15 seconds when the "Your DirecTV receiver is starting up" message appears. If the record light remains lit, you did it. This "reformats" the HDD creating all new file tables and also writing a special unique encryption code to it which then only allows shows recorded on that HDD to be played back on that specific R15. It also copies the OS from NVRAM to the HDD so that the only OS on the HDD is the current one.

Good luck!!

3LNB Phase III Dish * 2-R15-300 * R22-200 * D12-100 * DirecTV Subscriber since Y2K


#17 OFFLINE   xmguy

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 03:03 PM

If you really know what you are doing, you can install a new HDD in your R15. The procedure (and a software download you will need) are located elsewhere on DBSTALK.COM, but unfortunately I don't know where! :(

I read the entire thread long ago and in essence you CAN NOT just put a "native" HDD into the R15 and get it to work. HDD's have to be "prepped" and a certain sector written to before they will work in an R15. And you can't use Windows and a PC to do it, either. But you CAN use a PC and that download I mentioned. Apparently, it loads a small version of UNIX on the PC which then lets you prep the drive.

Once the HDD is "R15 ready", you start up the R15 and hold down the RECORD BUTTON and the DOWN ARROW key on the front panel simultaneously for about 15 seconds when the "Your DirecTV receiver is starting up" message appears. If the record light remains lit, you did it. This "reformats" the HDD creating all new file tables and also writing a special unique encryption code to it which then only allows shows recorded on that HDD to be played back on that specific R15. It also copies the OS from NVRAM to the HDD so that the only OS on the HDD is the current one.

Good luck!!


I know what you are talking about. With my ReplayTV Drive. I had to "Bless" the drive.
DirecTV Subscriber Since 3/24/2008 || HR44-500 - SWiM and DECA to Vizio 32" LCD 1080P HDTV (SV320XVT) via HDMI | MY SETUP IN DETAIL UPDATED 3/21/2012 (Q1 2013 | I'm On FACEBOOK! "Originally Posted by xmguy : OK. I need directions. (to Sixto's house) Lol ;) | Originally Posted by Sea bass : Head down to 99c, skip over to 103ca, next over to 103cb and you have arrived.:)":hurah:

#18 OFFLINE   sonicflood

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Posted 29 June 2008 - 12:27 PM

I've searched and read every post I could find here about dead HDDs in an R15. So far, I've read conflicting information regarding swapping out hard drives. Some say:

1) That you need to download a file and write it to certain sectors on the new drive prior to installation. Note: I have also read that this only required with older firmware revisions and not required in newer ones.

~or~

2) That all you need to do is partition a new HDD between 160-250gb, replace dead one and perform the reformat (down arrow and REC button).

Well, I'm in the process of testing the 2nd solution as mine died two days ago. I was having the skipping problems and when watching recorded content the screen would go black and exit out to live TV. I tried a forced software update, system reset, red button and then finally a reformat of the drive. The reformat must have killed it as I can only get the welcome screen, almost there, checking disk this could take 30min & then the notice that there was a problem with the drive, please unplug for 1 minute.

It's my last hope for this box. I own it and don't have the insurance. I'd rather not get into a 2 year commitment right now if I don't have to.

I'll post back the results of my HDD replacement. If successful, I'll post all the details in hopes of helping someone else who may also be confused by the conflicting information. Wish me luck!

#19 OFFLINE   sonicflood

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Posted 29 June 2008 - 02:45 PM

UPDATE...


SUCCESS!!!

I performed option 2 (in my above post) and it works! With all due respect to ThomasM who posted above that it cannot be done, I believe that possibly the early firmware revisions were the ones that would not allow a standard HDD swap. I know that this is NOT the case with new firmware as I did it!

Here's the info on my setup and what I bought/did:

Model: R15
Manufacturer: 500
Software:
Original Version- 0x120C
Past Upgrade- 0X120C (I had forced a software update prior to the drive dying. That's why it is the same version as original)
Future Upgrade- Not Scheduled

I bought a Western Digital 160GB Caviar SE HDD

Model: WD1600JBRTLW
UPC: 18037 11725

Bought it from Wal-Mart (on closeout) for $59.98

Here's the steps that I took:

1) I installed the new drive in my PC with the jumper settings on default (cable select).
2) Powered up the PC
3) Inserted the Data Lifeguard Tools CD that came with the drive
4) Partitioned the drive as one partition @160GB
5) Turned off PC and disconnected newly partitioned drive
6) Swapped defective drive in R15 with new drive
7) Reconnected all A/V cables to R15
8) Powered up R15 and initiated reformat (Down Arrow and REC button)
9) R15 then began reformatting drive (took approximately 2 hours)
10) R15 restarted and setup screen was present
11) Entered all pertinent data for my area and completed setup
12) Back in business!!!

Only my local channels are not present but as I understand it, they will return after a couple of hours as DTV has to reinitialize them.

I certainly hope that this helps others here. I'm glad that I took the chance as it paid off!

UPDATE 2: Local cannels are back in lineup. Only took about 30 minutes.

#20 OFFLINE   ThomasM

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Posted 29 June 2008 - 08:53 PM

UPDATE...


SUCCESS!!!

I performed option 2 (in my above post) and it works! With all due respect to ThomasM who posted above that it cannot be done, I believe that possibly the early firmware revisions were the ones that would not allow a standard HDD swap. I know that this is NOT the case with new firmware as I did it!


Wow! That's GREAT NEWS!!

For once, I am totally pleased that I was wrong!!

Glad you got your R15 up and running without any involvement of DirecTV! :D

3LNB Phase III Dish * 2-R15-300 * R22-200 * D12-100 * DirecTV Subscriber since Y2K





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