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Managing Recordings on Multiple DVRs


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66 replies to this topic

#21 OFFLINE   hdtvfan0001

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 02:23 PM

I assign Channels to DVRs and I assign by Genre to DVRs.

My wife and I record all of our shows on the HR34 and the kids have all of their shows on an HR21.

The other DVR's (2) are simply used for MRV and have empty playlists.

I think both of you have a nice "system" in place for your households.
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#22 OFFLINE   Steve

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 02:34 PM

I try to avoid putting all network programming onto a single DVR because there is usually only one showing of network shows. So, unexpected conflicts end up being resolved by one show never getting recorded.

Like others, I solve this by only recording CBS and NBC on one HR24, and only recording FOX and ABC on another HR24.

Two big advantages to this approach, IMHO, if you have enough DVRs to do this with:
  • I can schedule network shows remotely with complete confidence I won't have a conflict.
  • I get the maximum pre- and post-padding on each recording, because the DVR scheduler "overlaps" padding for consecutive recordings on the same channel.
Of course, this is only possible thanks to MRV, since it really doesn't matter in which room a recording actually lives. Before that, I had to keep a spreadsheet as well, along with anticipate in which room I might want to watch a show.

A third HR24 is used to record PBS and all the cable shows. PBS gets highest priority, and the cable shows are set lower. I rarely see a conflict on that box, if ever, because the first-run cable shows normally air more than once.

I also have an HR34 to record dupes of most of my important shows. I've got an AM21 attached to it, so I record OTA dupes of CBS and NBC shows on it. The HR24 that records FOX and ABC has an AM21 as well, so those shows get recorded OTA on that box, with SAT back-ups on the HR34.

Edited by Steve, 04 October 2012 - 05:34 AM.

/steve

#23 OFFLINE   hdtvfan0001

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 05:11 PM

Two big advantages to this approach, IMHO, if you have enough DVRs to do this with:

  • I can schedule network shows remotely with complete confidence I won't have a conflict.
  • I get the maximum pre- and post-padding on each recording, because the DVR scheduler "overlaps" padding for consecutive recordings on the same channel.
Of course, this is only possible thanks to MRV, since it really doesn't matter in which room a recording actually lives.

I hadn't actually considered those added benefits of that approach before, but they are great points. Thanks for sharing.

A bunch of you folks seem to have this figured out quite nicely and also without major time invested in managing it all. Kudos.
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#24 OFFLINE   rsblaski

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 05:42 PM

I generally record NBC, HBO and Fox on DVR 1, ABC, CBS And Showtime on DVR 2, and spread the rest around on my HR34 and another DVR in a spare bedroom if needed.
However, since I've gotten an Asus tf700, I just use the DirecTV app to schedule new series or onetime recordings. I simply schedule them to record on all the DVR`s "if possible". I find this much easier than to have to go to another DVR if i find a conflict. The next time I check an individual dvr, I just delete what doesn't belong on that DVR`s series list.
I would still prefer being able to manage all my DVR`s series lists from one location, however.
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#25 ONLINE   armophob

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 10:19 PM

I guess now all we have to do is share spread sheets when we want to see what we are all watching these days.

#26 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 10:39 PM

I think at a minimum, if you have multiple dvrs but no hr34, then I'd use one of two methods:

1. specific channels to certain dvrs. example for someone in LA with 2 dvrs: 2 (cbs) and 4 (nbc) and all cable channels up to 245 on one unit and then put 5 (wb) 7 (abc) 11(fox) and all cable channels 246 and up on the other.

2. all stuff for one person on one dvr, and all stuff for the other person on another dvr, assuming no overlap. If there is overlap, then you designate one dvr to have all series that would overlap.

If you have an hr34 and other dvrs I'd put everything on the hr34 that is a series. Then put all my sports on other dvrs. Also might use other dvrs for other people with non overlapping shows.

In a perfect world, I'd have three hr34s. One for all my series, one for half my sports and all my random discovery channel type shows, and one for the other half of my sports and movies and autorecords based on people.

#27 OFFLINE   RACJ2

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 07:03 AM

It would be nice if there was a master schedule for multiple DVR's and it was smart enough to schedule across DVR's. Although since I added my HR34, I schedule almost everything on it. With 5 tuners, I never have a conflict. And for storage, I only have the original 1TB internal drive in mine. Guess I don't record as much as some you do.

I do have some duplicate series set up on my HR22. Most of the time, I only add a recording to it, if I'm in that room and I see an ad for a program I want to watch. Since you can't schedule to a remote DVR from another DVR (which I wish was an option), I set it up on the HR22. Occasionally I'll use the app on my phone to set it up remotely to the HR34 instead.
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#28 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 07:36 AM

It would be nice if there was a master schedule for multiple DVR's and it was smart enough to schedule across DVR's.


No thank you. I don't want my DVRs to do my thinking for me. We'd wind up with series episodes spread all over the place.
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#29 OFFLINE   Steve

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 07:49 AM

Per the thread starter's original post, I just now finished remotely setting up a bunch of Series Links for my mom, a FiOS TV subscriber. Using her account log-in from my house, I had web access to both her multiroom DVRs, and I was able to see and delete from her playlists, TDL and series manager, as well as search and schedule recordings either DVR. Piece of cake.

Just like DirecTV WHDVR service, she has two DVRs and one STB, and can see any recording from any location.

I attached some screen shots of the Web UI I was working with below.

Attached Thumbnails

  • FiOS Play List.jpg
  • FiOS Series Manager.jpg
  • FiOS Record Series.jpg
  • FiOS To Do List.jpg

/steve

#30 OFFLINE   Steve

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 07:54 AM

No thank you. I don't want my DVRs to do my thinking for me. We'd wind up with series episodes spread all over the place.

With MRV, I personally could care less which box a show was on. That said, I expect a collaborative scheduler would have an option to pin a recording to a particular DVR at the time you set up the recording, so if you did care, it wouldn't be an issue.

Not to belabor this, but the real value of collaborative scheduling to me is that all recording management can be centralized. Without leaving my seat, I was just able to manage both my mom's DVRs 3 miles from my home, but if I want to delete a Series Link from my own Family Room HR34, I now have to walk down two flights of stairs to do it.
/steve

#31 OFFLINE   Bill Broderick

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 07:58 AM

No thank you. I don't want my DVRs to do my thinking for me. We'd wind up with series episodes spread all over the place.


I disagree. Other than when I'm trying to clear out a hard drive on a specific DVR, so I can replace it, without losing anything that I want to keep (which I'm currently in the process of doing), I couldn't care less which DVR a show gets recorded on. I'd love to have the option for a DVR network smart enough to resolve conflicts by recording something on a different DVR than the one on which it was scheduled.

#32 OFFLINE   Mike Bertelson

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 08:05 AM

This is how I do it. I export the grid from Wikipedia into Excel. Color coded by DVR.

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Attached Files


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#33 OFFLINE   rbpeirce

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 09:49 AM

I really like the spreadsheet idea and I plan to implement it when I get home.

The two things I do now is to put network shows on one DVR and cable shows on the other with exceptions for when I get three in one ares. I also alphabetize the shows in the priority list, since priorities shouldn't be an issue. That way I can easily find shows as needed.

The one problem I have is getting rid of discontinued shows. Some shows have a nasty habit of re-appearing after you have decided they have been canceled. Others never re-appear yet stay in the list until I run out of space and have to get rid of something. Any solutions for that?

#34 ONLINE   armophob

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 09:56 AM

Any solutions for that?


I use The Futon Critic.

#35 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 09:59 AM

With MRV, I personally could care less which box a show was on.


Until you've lost a box and find out that episodes 2, 4 and 9 of a show you watch were on that DVR instead of all together with the other episodes because you let the DVR decide where to record them. :)
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#36 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 10:01 AM

I disagree. Other than when I'm trying to clear out a hard drive on a specific DVR, so I can replace it, without losing anything that I want to keep (which I'm currently in the process of doing), I couldn't care less which DVR a show gets recorded on. I'd love to have the option for a DVR network smart enough to resolve conflicts by recording something on a different DVR than the one on which it was scheduled.


As I replied to Steve... You wouldn't like it so much if this "smart" scheduler put episodes of shows all over the place and now you've lost a DVR.

I want things to record on the DVR I tell them to record on, not somewhere out of my control.
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#37 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 10:07 AM

Here's my spreadsheet. Pretty simple.

EDIT: Well I guess the system won't accept .numbers files. Oh well...
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#38 OFFLINE   rbpeirce

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 10:48 AM

Thanks. I added Futon Critic to my reading list. Now I need to figure out how to use it.

#39 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 11:55 AM

As I replied to Steve... You wouldn't like it so much if this "smart" scheduler put episodes of shows all over the place and now you've lost a DVR.

I want things to record on the DVR I tell them to record on, not somewhere out of my control.


All the spreadsheets and other methods are worthless if a DVR fails, unless you've got multiple DVRs backing them up, I think. Now, if we could use any HDD recorded within an account on any HR within that account, losing a DVR wouldn't be so catastrophic as it is now.

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#40 OFFLINE   Steve

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 12:06 PM

Ya. My ideal set-up would be a 5-6 tuner diskless set top box connected to fault tolerant networked attached storage. In that scenario, the recordings would be encrypted to my account and not a particular STB.
/steve




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