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Managing Recordings on Multiple DVRs


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66 replies to this topic

#51 OFFLINE   RACJ2

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 08:26 PM

Yes, it would matter. Again, if your recordings are all over the place and you lose a DVR you're screwed. Unlike most everyone else I don't watch things when they air. I save some shows for when the season ends and I can watch all the episodes back to back. I'd HATE it if some of those episodes were no longer there because some stupid "master integrated recording list" decided it would spread episodes out over my system.

I'll take my spreadsheets over a "master integrated recording list" any day. Make fun of me and my spreadsheets all you want.

First off, I apologize that the way I worded my post may have been misinterpreted. I wasn't making fun of you or your spreadsheets at all. I was merely saying that if I could be automated, it would sure be better then spreadsheets.

And now that you explained how you record a seasons worth of programs on the same DVR and then watch a whole season, I can see why you said what you did. I watch programs from week to week or maybe up to 3 episodes back to back. So that's why I can do all my recording on my HR34. We just have different needs.
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#52 ONLINE   Drucifer

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 08:30 PM

I would think, in the scenario RAC suggests, episodes of a particular series (SL) would all be on one DVR.


Even before I got my HR34, I never had spreadsheets or anything. I set up recordings on the main DVR. If I tried to set up a SL and there was a conflict, I just set that one up on a different DVR. Didn't matter to me what network it was or what type of show it was. I had SL's spread across three different DVR's and most of the time I had no idea which DVR I was even watching from. A master recording list could do the same thing. Find a spot for the SL and put it on that DVR (with all episodes of that show there as well).

I can imagine what your sock draw looks like.

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#53 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 08:01 AM

Not sure how that even relates, but which one?

I have one drawer for black socks and another for white.

I'm sure Directv can't wait to get their hands on your unit.

 
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#54 OFFLINE   Bill Broderick

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 10:10 AM

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


These are the pages that you want.

Current Season Guide

and from that page, you can get to "When does (insert show) return" page.

I don't bother keeping inactive shows on my DVR's from season to season because it's usually easier to start from scratch when setting up a new season, rather than trying to force specific shows to remain on the same DVR that they were on last year. So, as soon as a show is over for the season, I delete it from my schedule, as well as my spreadsheet. The exceptions are the shows that have a "mini-season" with only a month or two of downtime between "mini-seasons" (USA has been doing a lot of this). For those shows, I won't delete them until all of the "mini-seasons" are done.

Edited by Bill Broderick, 05 October 2012 - 12:02 PM.
Fix link


#55 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 10:25 AM

Like I said, for me I wouldn't really need it. Although, if you had WHDVR and a master integrated recoding list. Would it really matter which DVR it was recorded on? You would just select the episode and it would go pull it from the DVR it was recorded on. Sounds better then using manual spreadsheets?


We do have the Unified Playlist (UPL) that does exactly that. It acts as a data base. I have a huge UPL and I don't bother with worrying about what's where.

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#56 OFFLINE   TomCat

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 07:45 PM

I have a spreadsheet, where I keep track of what programs are recording on which DVR at what times. I keep a printout in the remote caddy in the family room and check it before I add a new SL entry (and note it on the printout which I then use to update the file).

What can I say...I work with computers all day. ;)

I have a similar system. I have 4 DVRs in one room (no WH for me). I have a colored sticker on each; red, blue, green, yellow, and corresponding stickers on their respective remotes, and on the remote for my HDMI switcher which feeds two TVs in that room.

I use Numbers (spreadsheet) on a MacBook Air, and rows for programs sectioned into days of the week and columns for DVRs, appropriately color-matched. When I record a program on Red, for instance, I increment that cell by one, which means I have a running total of how many eps of any program I have on any DVR. When I delete, I decrement the cell total. This means I can also use the spreadsheet functions to tell me how many hours of recordings I have and how much space I have (developed during the Tivo era when there was no space meter). I use further tweaks to indicate which eps would be next in play order and which DVRs to increment for that night's record schedule, should I need to record eps of the same show spread over multiple DVRs for whatever reason. Half-hour shows need a separate section to keep the math right.

I also created a grid program in Omnigraffle that keeps a record of every ep of every show, with date represented by columns, a page for every day of the week. This way I know if I have seen a particular ep already (I grey it out once viewed). This comes in handy if CBS decides to throw us a 2009 ep of CSI; I just refer to the history and see if its greyed out on my 2009 version. Since I double-record most stuff, I use a field color and a border color to represent the two DVRs any ep will be recorded on. Every ep is represented by its own little tile that I can move around snapped to the grid, and I end up with columns of tiles representing a season of each program, each tile representing an ep and its location representing its original air date. Over that is a transparent block that covers just the future dates that are not available in the schedule as of yet, which I resize as that day becomes available. Over the years I have tweaked this system a lot, and I am using lots of 3D shading to make it very attractive, rather than just sparse spreadsheets.

I have yet another grid in Omnigraffle that represents air time vs channels, again with a page for every day of the week. That is used to predict and resolve recording conflicts, but only when necessary. Very handy.

The whole shebang takes a couple of hours a week to manage, but I do it while I am watching the news shows on Sunday mornings, so I really don't waste any time with it. Entering the ep titles is the most cumbersome part.

I plan to move it all to the iPad as soon as the software is capable.

Edited by TomCat, 05 October 2012 - 08:08 PM.

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#57 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 11:20 PM

Not sure how that even relates, but which one?

I have one drawer for black socks and another for white.


!rolling

Actually, your method surprises me. I find it very easy to just stick to recording certain networks on certain dvrs to be the easiest method to avoid conflicts, as stations like to change times shows are on and can create conflicts latter on, where as if you stick to certain networks on certain dvrs, that issue should not arise across three dvrs ever for network shows, and cable shows repeat enough it shouldn't be a problem for them either.

#58 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 11:23 PM

I don't think so...they function as DLNA clients (sort of) in that they can play some audio and video from another server (PC), but they will only deliver video to a DirecTV2PC client...you can't play anything through media player.

The security answer doesn't hold water...it is no less secure than an external drive attached to the DVR. It is just a drive at the end of an Ethernet cable instead of a SATA cable.


I have always thought the reason we can't move hard drives around is security. How do you tie everything to an account number and not a access or RID number? What if someone could figure out how to spoof that? That's the issue I am talking about, and it would be prevalent in a NAS type device situation as suggested.

I am not saying I wouldn't like that process, I am just saying I wonder if its something they'd ever even consider, if they can even get past the impracticality of its use for their average customers.

#59 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 12:02 AM

How do you tie everything to an account number and not a access or RID number?


You could ask that same question in reverse as well. How do you tie everything to a RID/Access card and not an account number? Tying it to one number would be just as easy as tying it to another.

What if someone could figure out how to spoof that?


Again, same could be said in reverse. What if someone could spoof a RID? We all know an access card can be spoofed, look back at the HU card days.

A number is just a number whether it be account number, RID, access card or phone number. When you're generating a pgp key you can use anything for a passphrase, this would be no different.
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#60 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 12:50 AM

You could ask that same question in reverse as well. How do you tie everything to a RID/Access card and not an account number? Tying it to one number would be just as easy as tying it to another.

Again, same could be said in reverse. What if someone could spoof a RID? We all know an access card can be spoofed, look back at the HU card days.

A number is just a number whether it be account number, RID, access card or phone number. When you're generating a pgp key you can use anything for a passphrase, this would be no different.


I am under the impression that the rid and access card numbers are "hard coded" into the physical chips on the card and Receiver, and can't be changed without physically changing their chips, that's why they in part can't be spoofed is my understanding. There is no way to do that with an account number, as those have to change when DVRs are activated and deactivated. This is my thought process on this. I don't know if that's the case, but it was explained to me that way long ago and it did make some sense at the time, although I don't remember all the reasoning behind it anymore, just the overall concept.

#61 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 01:17 AM

I am under the impression that the rid and access card numbers are "hard coded" into the physical chips on the card and Receiver, and can't be changed without physically changing their chips, that's why they in part can't be spoofed is my understanding. There is no way to do that with an account number, as those have to change when DVRs are activated and deactivated. This is my thought process on this. I don't know if that's the case, but it was explained to me that way long ago and it did make some sense at the time, although I don't remember all the reasoning behind it anymore, just the overall concept.


Hard coded or not, it's just a number. The access card can be spoofed and has in the past. I don't see why you can't spoof a RID either, it's just a number. Not sure why you think it needs to be a "hard coded" number though, a number is a number. They could encrypt the recordings on any drive with any passphrase, why not use the account number?
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#62 OFFLINE   unixguru

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 10:10 AM

Nice, but will DirecTV ever do it for their customers?

According to a few members here, DirecTV does not have the resources.


But they have the resources to put into Genie Recommends :mad:

Which looks to me to be mostly another way to pump PPV. At least with Genie one doesn't have to look at it. The number of PPV ad lines in the guide is getting out of control...

Therein lies the problem... no extra revenue from managing programming via the internet. Oh, wait a minute, they could just add yet ANOTHER fee like HD, WH, ... :nono2:

#63 OFFLINE   Richierich

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 01:39 PM

I commend those with innovative or organized ways to manage those reams of recordings.

It does pose a logical question thought...with that much content recorded....when the heck do you have time to actually view it all? :eek2::D


I have 7 DVRs with 14 Terabytes of Recording Capacity on them so Yes I do Record a lot of stuff. I do not have time to view all of the recordings but after a week or so I do Routine Maintenance and Delete those Recordings I do not want to view or keep.

It is an ongoing process so that you can free up space on your DVRs and get rid of dated recordings that you didn't have time to watch such as football games that are interesing such as Oregon but I am not in the West so the ACC and SEC are a higher priority but I still have my eye on Oregon as my FSU Seminoles are right behind them.
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#64 ONLINE   Drucifer

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 02:20 PM

But they have the resources to put into Genie Recommends :mad:

Which looks to me to be mostly another way to pump PPV. At least with Genie one doesn't have to look at it. The number of PPV ad lines in the guide is getting out of control...

Therein lies the problem... no extra revenue from managing programming via the internet. Oh, wait a minute, they could just add yet ANOTHER fee like HD, WH, ... :nono2:

DirecTV should be able to add lots of ads to online PlayList and Series Manager, so it could pay for itself if they care to even take a look at providing this service.

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#65 OFFLINE   TomCat

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 03:36 PM

I have 7 DVRs with 14 Terabytes of Recording Capacity on them so Yes I do Record a lot of stuff. I do not have time to view all of the recordings but after a week or so I do Routine Maintenance and Delete those Recordings I do not want to view or keep.

It is an ongoing process so that you can free up space on your DVRs and get rid of dated recordings that you didn't have time to watch...

This is a new era that we as DVR owners (lessees?) had to wait a decade for, which is enough space to record whatever we want, and watch it whenever we want.

Not that many years ago we were driven by limited space. The DVR was supposed to free us from the playback schedule and allow us to watch indiscriminately, but with limited space, we had to manage the space carefully, and that meant watching shows actually earlier than might be convenient, deleting shows we really might want to keep, missing recordings because we just didn't have the space, watching your second or third choice program instead of your first choice at the moment because you needed to free space on that particular DVR, etc.

So having the luxury of too much space, rather than not enough, has been exceptionally liberating; it took a very long time to get to here.

I have 8 TB on 4 DVRs. You are kind of out in the weeds if you want to do more than that, per DVR at least. I still have to manage it, but things are much better than they were just a few years ago.

Now if we could just perfect unified playlists and HDD backup issues. Double recording and keeping a spreadsheet or other method are the workarounds that currently address those problems, but not all that easily or elegantly. WH seems not all that great either.

I think one great stab at a solution is Hopper technology; I'm just not desperate enough to abandon DTV to get it.
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#66 OFFLINE   RACJ2

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 09:49 PM

We do have the Unified Playlist (UPL) that does exactly that. It acts as a data base. I have a huge UPL and I don't bother with worrying about what's where.

Rich

Right, we have a UPL. I was talking about when setting up a recording. The unified scheduler would go out and find an open tuner, that doesn't have a conflict, on any DVR and sets it up to record. Maybe it checks the current DVR first and if there are conflicts, it checks a second DVR, etc.

And the scheduler would warn you if you are setting up the same program to record a second time. And if you still ask it to set it up to record a second time, it knows to use a different DVR. Since you would be doing it for a backup to the original recording.

And as I have already mentioned, my HR34 with 5 tuners and 1 TB drive works for all my recording needs. So I wouldn't even need this, but some posters have said they would.
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#67 OFFLINE   TXD16

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Posted 07 October 2012 - 12:27 AM

Unified management is long, long overdue, but, unfortunately, the fact of the matter is that DIRECTV will be pushing to their generally semi-technology-literate customers a sever/client product, the HR34 and C31, which will likely serve the masses quite well. Those same masses are simply not going to know any different nor are they likely to request anything other than what they are being served.

The rest of us? We will need to continue to be the squeaky wheel and request (as in contacting DIRECTV) unified functionality or it simply ain't gonna happen.

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