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Removing / Replacing / Copying Hard Drive of HR2* Receiver [Photo Tutorial]


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#1 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 10:37 PM

This document is intended to aid as a tool for instructional purposes. Please realize that opening your receiver may violate your DIRECTV Customer Agreement if you lease the equipment. The procedure below is only recommended if you actually own the equipment.

Before I get into the steps of my particular upgrade, I want to give my full thanks to Marty’s thread on how to upgrade the internal hard drive of a DIRECTV HR2* receiver. His thread can found HERE and HERE and allowed me to successfully upgrade my buddy’s receiver from a 320GB drive with 3% free to a 1.5 TB drive with 86% free.

So, you are probably asking yourself if Marty’s post is so good, why are you creating another post yourself? The main reason is that I have tried to include photos to add as an additional layer of instruction. Inevitably, however, your receiver may differ. There seem to be different variants that have been created over the years. This document is specifically for a HR20 but will assist with other versions.

Another question you might be asking yourself is why would you want to upgrade the internal hard drive of the receiver when it’s very easy to connect an external hard drive? There are two easy answers for that.

1) Noise. It’s much quieter.

2) Most importantly, you don’t lose your shows or settings.

I recommend you reading though the directions a couple times before you actually begin the process yourself. It’s actually quite easy to accomplish.

Required Tools & Supplies
A Knife
T10 Security Torx
A Common Screwdriver with at least a 6” blade
#2 Philips Screwdriver
A Corrugated Cardboard Box
Diagonal Cutters
PC with two SATA ports
GParted version 0.3.7.7 or later
One Cable Tie


You’re reading this because your hard drive probably looks like this one:

Posted Image

...Ads Help To Support This SIte...

#2 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 10:38 PM

STEP 1 – BE A BOY SCOUT. BE PREPARED.

1. Read through the directions and absorb them.

2. Go into Setup and reboot your receiver. Here is the path to reboot:

  • Menu
  • Parental, Fav’s, & Setup
  • System Setup
  • Reset
  • Restart Receiver
  • - (Dash Button)

3. When the lights on the front of the DVR go out, unplug power to the receiver. This assures the drive is in the proper state when power is lost.

4. Disconnect ALL the other cables to the DVR and find a comfortable place to work.

5. Read all these directions again to assure you are ready to take on the project.

*** SIDE NOTES: If you have difficulty with Step 2 for some reason, press the red reset button under the flap of the front right side of the face of the receiver. It’s located just to the left of the access card.

Edited by clambert, 28 October 2009 - 10:50 PM.


#3 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 10:46 PM

STEP 2 - PEEL IT

Posted Image

1. Turn the receiver around so you are facing the back.

2. Using a knife, peel the label just far enough down so you can remove the lid.

*** SIDE NOTES: It a violation of DIRECTV’s Customer Agreement to open the receiver if you lease the equipment. Please note these instructions are only being provided for the purpose of education the people that own their equipment.

#4 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 10:52 PM

STEP 3 – UNSCREW IT!

Posted Image

1. Using a T10 Security Torx, remove the 5 screws shown in the photo.

*** SIDE NOTES: Not all receivers apparently have use Security Torx. If there is a post in the middle of the screw head you will need a Security Torx. You’ll notice a hole in the end of the tool to fit over the post. If you are not sure what you need and have to buy the tool anyway, just buy the Security Torx. Harbor Freight carries them and you can pick up a set for about $4.

#5 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 10:55 PM

STEP 4 – TAKING THE LID OFF

Posted Image

1. Using the common screwdriver, carefully pry the top cover so it slides back. You may need to use the back of the receiver to add as a little leverage. Do this for the left, middle, and right side.

*** SIDE NOTES: The cover is more difficult to get off than you would think. It was for me anyway. It’s on their tight. Also note that it will only slide back so far before being stopped by the frame of the receiver. Slide it back and pull it off. Be resourceful. :)


Posted Image
This is what the inside of the receiver looks like after you remove the cover.



Posted Image
Target Location. The old hard side sleeps here.

Edited by clambert, 28 October 2009 - 11:14 PM.


#6 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:02 PM

STEP 5 – PREPARING THE NEW DRIVE

1. Disconnect the SATA cable and power cable from the hard drive that is still in the receiver.



Posted Image

2. Grab that honkin’ BIG new hard drive



Posted Image

3. Flip the drive upside down and carefully lay it on the old hard drive.

4. Connect the SATA cable and power cable.

5. Carefully take the receiver with the hard drive connected to your TV and temporarily connect the TV video cable (HDMI or component).

6. Connect the satellite coax cable to one of the two Satellite Inputs (preferably Satellite In1).

7. Now connect power to the receiver.



Posted Image

8. The drive is now going to be prepared. It will format the drive and set things up.

9. When the TV picture finally comes up, go into Setup and reboot your receiver. Here is the path to reboot:

  • Menu
  • Parental, Fav’s, & Setup
  • System Setup
  • Reset
  • Restart Receiver
  • - (Dash Button)

10. When the lights on the front of the DVR go out, unplug power to the receiver. This assures the drive is in the proper state when power is lost.

11. Disconnect ALL the other cables to the DVR and return to your workplace with the DVR.

12. Remove the SATA cable and power cable from the new drive and set it off to the side.

*** SIDE NOTES: I don’t think any of the other tutorials prepare the new hard drive this way. They all use external enclosures, which I didn’t have. If you do have one, see Marty’s thread (again located HERE) for more insight on that avenue. If you have difficulty with Step 9 for some reason, press the red reset button under the flap of the front right side of the face of the receiver. It’s located just to the left of the access card.

#7 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:11 PM

STEP 6 – REMOVING THE DVR FACEPLATE

The faceplate is connected to the receiver by 8 locking tabs. Three on the top, three on the bottom, and one on each side. They look like they could break easy. Work carefully and have patience. This was removed, in my situation, because I needed access to the screws that hold the hard drive bracket.

1. Remove the access card. It’s located button under the flap of the front right side of the face of the receiver.



Posted Image

2. Grab your common screwdriver again. Carefully pry up one of tabs on the end just far enough to slide in a piece of cardboard in place to keep it from locking.

3. Work your way around using the cardboard to prevent the tabs from locking. Also use it as a spacer between the frame and faceplate.

4. Have patience and before you know it the faceplate will come off. If you’re too aggressive you may end up breaking a tab.

*** SIDE NOTES: Be careful as you get to the end of releasing the tabs. There is a ribbon cable that you don’t want to yank on. See the picture in Step 7. Apparently there are different variants of how the cover is attached to the frame. You may have to adapt depending on what you have. Apparently some of the drive brackets can be removed from the front of the frame by removing two nuts. This was not the case for the DVR I upgraded.

Edited by clambert, 28 October 2009 - 11:27 PM.


#8 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:23 PM

STEP 7 – REMOVE THE OLD HARD DRIVE (OUT WITH THE OLD)

Posted Image

1. While facing the front of the receiver, carefully move the faceplate to the left to gain access to the screws. Be careful not to tug on the ribbon cable.

2. Using your T10 Security Torx, remove the two torx screws behind the faceplate.



Posted Image

3. Using your T10 Security Torx, remove the grounding cable of the hard drive bracket.



Posted Image

4. Locate the fan. While pressing down on the circuit board, carefully unplug the cable to the fan.

5. If the connector for the fan cable will not pull through the cable tie, use diagonal cutters to cut the cable tie. I had to cut the tie. You may not.



Posted Image

6. Locate the two plastic plugs that hold the hard drive bracket. One is near the fan cable, the other is 3 inches or so away from the ground screw you just removed. This is actually the bottom of the plug.

7. Using your T10 Security Torx, push down on the center pins of the plugs until you can pull the bracket off. I pulled the center pins all the way out. If you can avoid doing that, I would. It’s a little tricky getting the plugs back together. If you have to push it all the way out to get the bracket off, then just do it.


Posted Image


Posted Image

*** SIDE NOTES: I don’t mention an installation procedure because it’s virtually the reverse of these instructions. If you cut the cable tie, remember to tie the cable back up. It’s not going to hurt anything if you don’t tie it down. If you have ties, use them. Don’t run out and buy them just for this project.

#9 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:24 PM

STEP 8 – REMOVING THE DRIVE FROM THE BRACKET

Posted Image

1. I didn’t take any pictures of this but it’s straight forward. Using your #2 Philips Screwdriver, remove the 5 screws that hold the hard drive to the bracket. There are 3 on one side and two on the side with the ground wire.

#10 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:27 PM

STEP 9 – CONNECTING THE DRIVES TO YOUR COMPUTER

1. In your computer identify SATA Port 0 and SATA Port 1 and the cables that run to them.

2. Connect your BIG & BEEFY NEW drive to SATA Port 0.

3. Connect the tiny old drive to SATA Port 1.

*** SIDE NOTES: I would only do this by connecting directly to the drives with SATA cables. Using a USB adapter is NOT recommended. It might work but there is a better chance you’ll introduce a problem and it will take a lot longer. Additionally, it felt backwards connecting the drives but I didn’t want to screw with the original directions so I just went with it. The Master belongs in Port 1 for this exercise. I suggest you just do the same.

#11 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:35 PM

STEP 10 – COPY THE SUCKER

1. Boot to the GParted CD (version 0.3.7.7 or later is required). If you’re unsure of what settings to pick while it boots, just press enter to select the default settings when prompted. DOWNLOAD LINK



Posted Image

2. Using the Menu, go to: GParted then Devices.

3. Both drives should show up. Make sure the NEW drive is listed as sda.

4. Make sure the OLD drive is listed as sdb.

5. Click on the desktop to make the Device Screen go away.



Posted Image

6. Double click on the Terminal Icon to open the terminal window. This will allow you to manually enter in some commands.

7. Type in mkdir /mnt/fap and press enter. (Nothing will appear to happen and it will drop you to another command line)

8. Type in mkdir /mnt/hr20 and press enter. (Nothing will appear to happen and it will drop you to another command line)

9. Type in mount -t xfs -o rtdev=/dev/sda3 /dev/sda2 /mnt/fap and press enter. (Nothing will appear to happen and it will drop you to another command line)

10. Type in mount -t xfs -o rtdev=/dev/sdb3 /dev/sdb2 /mnt/hr20 and press enter. (Nothing will appear to happen and it will drop you to another command line)

11. Now the command instructions to copy all your data from one drive to another. At the command prompt type in xfsdump -J - /mnt/hr20 | xfsrestore -J - /mnt/fap and press enter. A whole bunch of stuff will scroll on the screen and the last thing it will say is restoring non-directory files.

12. You wait. Patience is a virtue. It will sit at this screen for a long time as it copies the files. There is no progress bar. Overall time will vary depending on how full your drive was. My buddy’s drive had 3% free. It took 2 hours and 45 minutes to copy all the data. You’ll feel a little reassured looking at the hard drive LEDs, knowing that something is actually happening.

13. Finally it finishes and a message is displayed that reads Restore Status: SUCCESS. You’re not quite done though.

14. At the command prompt type in umount /mnt/hr20 and press enter. (Nothing will appear to happen and it will drop you to another command line)

15. At the command prompt type in umount /mnt/fap and press enter. (Nothing will appear to happen and it will drop you to another command line)

16. Type exit and press enter to close the terminal window.

17. Double click on the Exit icon.

18. Click on Shutdown and OK.

19. Remove the disc and press enter. Power should be shut off. Make sure the power is off. Unplug the PC if you are unsure.

*** SIDE NOTES: Be very careful typing in the commands correctly. Steps 14 & 15 say umount not unmount, which is what I originally was typing in to unmount the drive.

#12 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:37 PM

STEP 11 – PUTTING IT ALL BACK TOGETHER

1. Remove both drives from the computer. Place the old drive off to the side. Take the new drive to the DVR.

2. I’m not going to go into detail of how to put everything back together because it’s fairly strait forward. Work your way backwards through the steps. You might want to test the drive out before you get too carried away putting everything completely back together. I would put the drive in the bracket and then screw in the 2 screws behind the faceplate. Take the receiver, with the faceplate still loose, to a TV and fire it up. Don’t forget the access card.



Posted Image

3. If everything goes well you should have a crap-ton of storage now.

4. Look things over. If everything looks fine, which it should, disconnect the receiver again and finish closing it up.

*** SIDE NOTES: Make sure the access card isn’t in when you’re reconnecting the faceplate. Pop the card back in when the faceplate is securely on the receiver.

#13 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 11:41 PM

YOU DID IT!

Hopefully everything went well and you now can enjoy an enormous amount of storage. If you had a problem, I encourage you to read through all the posts in Marty’s Threads (HERE and HERE). Some of the info is old and doesn’t apply but you get an idea of some of the problems other people have had and what they did to fix it. Fortunately it worked for me this first time without any issues.

For those wondering I installed a 1.5 TB Western Digital Caviar Green Driver (Model WD15EADS) into my buddy’s receiver and he went from 3% free to 86% free. The drive is SUPER quiet and apparently has been working great. Granted, it has only been in there a week or so at this point. :grin:

Best of luck to all of you.

-- Craig

#14 OFFLINE   dal320driver

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 09:42 PM

Will this upgrade work on a HR23 machine? I just got one a couple of months ago and it is already full.

Thanks,
LJ

#15 OFFLINE   litzdog911

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 11:47 PM

Will this upgrade work on a HR23 machine? I just got one a couple of months ago and it is already full.

Thanks,
LJ


Yes.
HD DVRs: HR34-700; HR24-500; (2) HR20-700 + WD eSATA 1TB drive/Antec MX1 case; HR21-700; HR21-200 w/AM21
Receivers: H25-500 HD Receiver; H21-100 HD Receiver
Mobile Devices: Nomad

Additional equipment configuration details

Sun & moon help site your satellite dish


#16 OFFLINE   clambert

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 05:16 AM

Will this upgrade work on a HR23 machine? I just got one a couple of months ago and it is already full.


Yeah. Just keep in mind the body of the unit itself is different. Most likely everything will not look the same but the overall process will work just fine once you get the drive out.

#17 OFFLINE   CCarncross

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 06:21 AM

Will this upgrade work on a HR23 machine? I just got one a couple of months ago and it is already full.

Thanks,
LJ


Yes, but don't forget, if you dont OWN it, it is a violation of your Directv TOS to open and tamper with the box. clambert did post it in red at the top of this thread, but of course there will be those that would claim "they never saw it"

#18 OFFLINE   ntrance

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Posted 31 October 2009 - 04:41 PM

Nice work on the tutorial! I just have a few comments.

Another question you might be asking yourself is why would you want to upgrade the internal hard drive of the receiver when it’s very easy to connect an external hard drive? There are two easy answers for that.

1) Noise. It’s much quieter.

2) Most importantly, you don’t lose your shows or settings.

Just to clarify, you can also copy your internal drive recordings to an external drive using this procedure and keep your shows and settings. One nice thing about that route is that future upgrades are even easier. Of course the external drive setup is not as clean and uses more power than the internal route. If you have already gone the external route, and have recordings on both the internal drive and external drive, you can probably merge them on one new internal or external drive as demonstrated here:
http://www.dbstalk.c...477#post2229477

*** SIDE NOTES: If you have difficulty with Step 2 for some reason, press the red reset button under the flap of the front right side of the face of the receiver. It’s located just to the left of the access card.

The red reset button does not perform a graceful shutdown. This will result in a “Can’t read from Superblock” error when trying to mount the drive. So, the graceful shutdown through the menu restart commands is definitely recommended. Otherwise, you will be required to delete the log file as described here:
http://www.dbstalk.c...407#post2031407

Using a USB adapter is NOT recommended. It might work but there is a better chance you’ll introduce a problem and it will take a lot longer.

I agree that SATA is definitely preferred to USB since it is much faster as you stated. However, USB does work and several people have done USB upgrades without problem when that was their only option.

#19 OFFLINE   dal320driver

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Posted 01 November 2009 - 10:06 PM

Thanks to all for the info.

LJ

#20 OFFLINE   zcarguy

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Posted 03 November 2009 - 01:30 AM

If I were to get a new HR2x and copied the hard drive/recordings using gParted would they be viewable on s new DVR? Or are they married to the original DVR or access card?

Z




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