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A 2010 compendium of D* DVR bugs

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by Syzygy, May 21, 2010.

  1. May 21, 2010 #21 of 195

    Syzygy Hall Of Fame

    Dec 5, 2005
    Thanks for a helpful response, one of several.

    DirecTV is silent on bugs and fixes, so there's no way of knowing what's still a bug. It's really pitiful that we should have to assume that a bug is gone simply because there are no recent reports of it.

    Some bugs in the list, I admit, are based on reports from others — but never from just one user.

    I want to assure you that no user error was involved in this problem, which I personally experienced: "An individual show you explicitly schedule and which gets added to the To Do List may still not get recorded, and as a rule there'll be no history entry." I reported it as an NR issue.

    "A good start?" I'm plumb tuckered out! And here comes a new NR, which may fix some things, but how will I know?

    Waiting for the new DirecTiVo. When it arrives, D* can continue with their bugfest without any comment from me.
  2. May 21, 2010 #22 of 195

    PokerJoker Godfather

    Apr 12, 2008
    Las Vegas
    I agree that the effort to compile this list is praiseworthy.

    I would postulate that at least half of these issues trace back in some way (directly or indirectly) to the inadequate (slow) hardware. It would be interesting to know how many of these are suddenly "fixed" on the faster HR24.

    Here's one that happened to me the other day - The to-do list, with 30+ entries in it, apparently deleted itself. In the middle of the day, with no reboots involved. I knew a particular show was on, and I saw that it was not recording. Checked the to-do list and it was empty. :eek2: Series links were all still in place. I did the obvious thing and rebooted the box (an HR21-100). It took an inordinately long time to come back (8 minutes) and when it did, all guide data was gone. Both the guide data and the to-do list did eventually repopulate themselves, but this was a definite eye-opener. And if I had not caught it, who knows how many recordings would have been missed.

    Anyone else have this happen?

  3. May 21, 2010 #23 of 195

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

    Jun 14, 2003
    Salem, OR
    It will certainly help if TiVo gets the software out there to be able to ascertain what is possible and what isn't.

    One of the disadvantages of the subcontract approach to hardware design and manufacturing is that the software must be targeted to the least common denominator.
  4. May 21, 2010 #24 of 195

    spartanstew Dry as a bone

    Nov 16, 2005
    Wylie, Texas
    In the 4 years I've had my HRXX's, I've never had a problem with any of the following:

    I don't have a problem with these either:

    The following things I have experienced, and would like to see fixed:

    These, I have no idea if they're true, but I'll take your word for it:
    I use a universal remote, so again I don't know about these:
    These are merely wishlist type items, and everyone will want different things. My DVR doesn't make toast either, but I'm not going to put it on a bug list:
    About 1 month ago I went out of town for a week and when I returned, the DVR was still paused where I had left it, so I this one seems to be false:

    So, IMO, all of your lists boil down to 3 things: 50 series limit, CIG, paused screen flashing. One is not a bug, one is being worked on (and is currently almost pefect) and one that's really nitpicking, since I don't look at the screen when it's paused anyway.
  5. May 21, 2010 #25 of 195

    DogLover Hall Of Fame

    Mar 18, 2007
    I think you've figured out why there's not already a "master bug list" available on the forum. This will be helpful for people and does give us a place to come if we are wondering if a bug has been around a while.

    No slight was intended when I wondered about user error in the recording that didn't get recorded and wasn't in the history. I guess I just can't help but look at things like a developer. The bug description gives me absolutely zero information that I would need to solve bug. Well, not zero but very little. (I could see if there was a case where the DVR cancels a recording and then deletes the history or doesn't write a history record, depending on when the record is supposed to be written.) I would have no way of knowing why the show was deleted. (As a developer I would have assumed that the guide data changed to make the recording not longer valid, and that the DVR was working as designed, except for the history info.)

    I'm sure you gave more information when you initially reported it, so that they try to troubleshoot the matter, but not everyone does. Without details, the bug reports don't really help in any way to fix the problem. With detailed bug reports, problems have a chance of getting fixed. I have to admit this is pet peeve of mine when I see issue reports that don't contain even the basic information needed to track down a problem.

    And you make a good point about feedback of bug fixes. We can't know when something is fixed, or determined to not be a software issue. Just for example, your unrecorded program could be a guide data issue combined with a hardware error in writing the history file. It's still irritating to you, but nothing the developer can "fix". Then again, maybe they found the problem and fixed it, we just aren't aware of it.

    Because of the above, I think that we do need to assume bugs are fixed if we don't see them in a certain period of time. Either that, or we track the date of last report, so people can make their own mind up. However, that's a lot of work.

    Oh, and as to your mystery from your first post. Some of it is that new software causes a reboot. Reboots can always cause hardware issues, and reboots can reinitialize parts of the software. That software may assume that some of the data (such as series links, to do list, playlist) is good. If it is not, because of a previous bug or hardware issue, another issue may arise because of the bad data.

    Also, there is a psychological effect of new software. People recognize things that were there previously, but they weren't paying attention. I've seen users of software swear up and down that "it never used to do this," after a software change when I know from personal observation, that "it has always worked that way." Therefore, some of the uptick in bug reports after software updates are just existing problems that the user has failed to notice, but are now aware of.
  6. May 21, 2010 #26 of 195

    Bofurley Godfather

    Oct 11, 2006
    He has way too much time!
  7. May 21, 2010 #27 of 195

    Hutchinshouse Hall Of Fame

    Sep 27, 2006
    You forgot this one:

    • No cup holders
  8. May 21, 2010 #28 of 195

    hdtvfan0001 Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2004
    With due respect to the OP, your post really is funny.

    As others have also posted, I have not seen 98% of the OP issues either. No doubt that DirecTV or any other service is without hiccups, occasional problems, and flaws - nothing's perfect.

    It's unfortunate that the OP seems to have so many issues - but I wouldn't characterize it either as anything even closely resembling "an average user experience". His opinion is certainly rightful to have in his situation, although if this lengthy list is valid...one would think the experience described would have encouraged many other folks to migrate to an alternative provider long before such a robust list came into play.

    It appears that the OP is very close to moving elsewhere, and hopefully that experience meets their expectations.
  9. May 21, 2010 #29 of 195

    Syzygy Hall Of Fame

    Dec 5, 2005
    It seems as if most readers remain confused about what's a bug and what's a design deficiency. Hutchinshouse's post quotes the bug list and appends an obvious :D design deficiency (No cup holders).

    I personally rely on the cup holder in my PC's optical-disk tray. ;):D
  10. May 21, 2010 #30 of 195
    Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

    Jun 18, 2006
    With due respect, Frank, I think that you and I disagree on what is a bug and what is a design deficiency.
  11. May 21, 2010 #31 of 195

    cover Icon

    Feb 11, 2007
    I also see these two issues on both of my HR20-700s

    • Caller ID may work only intermittently. (Caller ID info is not always displayed on screen when the phone is ringing, even when other Caller ID devices and equipped phones show the info.)

    • Bogus "Searching for Satellite (771)" error that goes away if you reboot. (This also affects OTA Tuners - Searching for Signal.)

    And I would add that OTA channels occasionally get mapped incorrectly. For instance, tuning to the local OTA NBC station would actually receive the local OTA ABC station instead. Or, just tune to an unused OTA frequency resulting in a Searching for Signal. This happened a lot around the time of the national HD switch-over, and only occasionally now. A reboot fixes the problem.

    I'm glad for DirecTV to add new features, but I do wish some of these basic reliability issues would be given higher priority.

    I'll grudgingly admit there are some things I like better about the HR2x than my older DirecTivos and my HR10 that I still have in service. But, I always had nearly absolute confidence that the TiVo boxes would record what they were supposed to when they were supposed to. The HR2x boxes are pretty reliable at this point, but still fail to record shows for one reason or another much more often than the TiVo boxes did. And they require rebooting much more frequently - once a week vs. once a month.
  12. May 21, 2010 #32 of 195

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2006
    I have never once seen this issue, and I have tried to recreate it to verify this issue, but I just can't get it to do it here, on any of my 7 DVR's.

    You still feel many things that are design decisions are bugs, sorry, but I am with the Shadow on that one.

    There are several things in there that you list as bugs that aren't even of ANY consequence, and have ZERO impact on the unit actually doing its job, like the need multiple passes to pick up programs to record...It does NOT matter when it adds programs, as long as it records them.. Again, I sometimes think they need to hide the darn to do list from everyone, so people would not concern themselves with how its filled, it makes no difference, your SL manager is what matters on that.

    There is one or two items that are still guide data issues....

    If I had made this kind of list with the same approach as you use for a tivo, its list would be even longer.... way longer... Which proves one point... Personal preference is still king of the land, no matter what is offered.

    There are some things though that I could not agree with you more.. Slow mo, and anything that is press and hold needs to be completely redone... However, they aren't so important to me that they make me think any less of the box, the deficiencies of a tivo are far more predominant in my daily usage of a dvr...

    It's great you take the time and care this much..

    I look forward to the same kind of lists when the DirectvTivo hits the market and has as many issues...

  13. May 21, 2010 #33 of 195
    Mike Bertelson

    Mike Bertelson 6EQUJ5 WOW! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Jan 24, 2007
    After reading your list of bugs/flaws I'm completely flabbergasted you're still with DirecTV. Especially your continual video/audio freezes, choppiness, and stuttering. That would drive me absolutely nuts. I am being completely serious and honest with you when I say I would leave DirecTV if I had even half as many problems as you've had. I know you’ve probably heard this a thousand times and I don’t mean to piss you off, but I really think you have a problem with your equipment. Those video/audio issues are out of the norm. :confused:

    One thing I'm not sure I understand is what it means to have to wait a full three seconds to repeat a button press. :scratchin

    BTW, using the timer on the HDNet Test Pattern recording, my replay button jumps back 6-7 seconds everytime, so I don't know why yours doesn't. Maybe you should record the Test Pattern (if you haven't already) and do some timing to completly describe the issue.

  14. May 21, 2010 #34 of 195

    bonscott87 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '07

    Jan 21, 2003
    I've suggested this I don't know how many times to get the receiver replaced. I don't think it's ever been done. No way I would sit with defective equipment and not get them replaced as it's very easy to do so.

    And to think Tivo will be the savior. LOL. Yea, take a look at the Tivo forums lately? :lol:
  15. May 21, 2010 #35 of 195

    TomCat Broadcast Engineer

    Aug 31, 2002
    I appreciated the effort. You are nothing if not thorough. Kudos. Ignore the haters; it appears that that is all they know and love.

    Despite the list, I think we are still living with the top DVR available anywhere. I fully congratulate and support DTV and their efforts to improve the HR2x platform. That's great, but your list underlines that there is no room for them resting on their laurels, and that is how it should be. As can not always be said about these sorts of efforts, the odds are that they are listening to us. If history is any guide, they surely must be.

    I wonder how many of these issues are being addressed? I don't mind a no-fix on a particular issue as long as it is recognized as an issue and effort is being made to fix it. I think what really bugs me is "improvements" that they claim they have made that just are not there, such as chronological ep listings inside alphabetically-listed folders. That stupid of an "oops!" should be immediately moved to the top of the list for the next release. I guess we'll see.
  16. May 22, 2010 #36 of 195
    Carl Spock

    Carl Spock Superfly

    Sep 3, 2004
    Frank, do you consider countries that drive on the left have roads with design deficiencies or is it just the way they do it there?
  17. May 22, 2010 #37 of 195
    Mark Walters

    Mark Walters Legend

    Sep 21, 2009
    Syzygy - Could you give us a 2009 summary or compendium of the D* DVR bugs so we could compare and contrast with this year's? :)
  18. May 22, 2010 #38 of 195

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    Never had that happen, but I wouldn't expect perfect performance from a 21-100 or any other HR ending in 100. But you all know that. That stuff just doesn't happen on my 20-700s or my 21-200 or my 21-700. A lot of the problems listed seem to system problems rather than HR problems.

  19. May 22, 2010 #39 of 195

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    I used to teach a class for adults that was titled "Learning how to use a computer". A really basic class for folks who had no prior computer experience. Every time I taught it, some folks would put their coffee cups on that tray. True story. They just had no idea what that tray was meant for. :)

  20. May 22, 2010 #40 of 195

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    My nine 20-700s never fail to display the caller ID.

    Yet another thing that's never happened to me on the 20-700s. I have had that problem with a 21-700 and a dish realignment solved that problem. The 20-700s seem to have less problems with misaligned dishes than the rest of the HRs. (I don't have a 24, can't comment on them.)

    I rarely reboot my 20-700s, certainly not once a week. And they never fail to record a program if I set the recording parameters correctly. I really sounds as if you've got a system problem rather than a problem with your 20-700s.


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