Umm, "new" VIP922 has 722 GUI?

Discussion in 'ViP922 DVR Support Forum' started by ZBoomer, May 13, 2011.

  1. ZBoomer

    ZBoomer Icon

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    Ok, I've experienced some weird stuff, but this is up there.

    My 922 has gotten flaky (sling not working, timers not firing, locking up, etc.), so Dish just sent me a replacement. Of course it's a refurb, no surprise, but what IS a surprise is that when I hooked it up, I am now being presented with the old, 622/722-style GUI.

    Everything about it is just like the 722, it's like they stuck 722 guts in a 922. System Info screen does say it's a 922, but so far, I don't believe it. Old menus, old everything, and I can't even get my 922 remote to link to it, so trying to control it via the control panel, which isn't exactly easy, since I have it in a different room than the TV.

    The hook-up guide says it would update software once connected, but its done nothing of the sort. The hook-up guide also instructed how to link the remote, and that didn't work, so not exactly going as planned.

    Guess I'll try to activate the thing, see what happens?

    More later... not exactly a smooth transition so far.
     
  2. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Never heard of that... Are you sure they actually sent you a 922?

    I didn't think you could load the 722 firmware onto the 922 even in an accidental scenario.
     
  3. e1322739

    e1322739 New Member

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    I had the same issue recently when my 922 was replaced. The Dish Network customer service rep had me do a full system reset (reloading the factory defaults), then go through check switch, and so forth. This forced the system to download the correct software. She also told me not to liink my remotes as directed on the screen until all the software updates were done. (She also talked me through de-linking the remotes - lots of button pushes).

    So if you can't figure it out, call customer service....

    Not sure why they send out receivers with old software, but since I went through these steps all has been good with the replacement receiver.
     
  4. butters

    butters AllStar

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    That is very strange... You may want to wait and see if the updates remedy the problem. I have heard it can take a couple days to fully update the 922 software.
     
  5. ZBoomer

    ZBoomer Icon

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    Ok, here's the update.

    When I first installed the 922, it was acting nothing like expected. Basically I was unable to follow the "quick" install instructions that came with it at all. Like I said, the first sign something was weird is that the receiver had the old GUI, yet was definitely a 922. You could go into the system info screen, and it said it was a 922, but the firmware was mega old - s063 if I remember correctly.

    The first step of the procedure is to pair remotes, and that wouldn't work at all. My DVR is in a separate room, so had to keep walking back and forth, or get my son to work the controls while I watched the screen.

    I messed around with it, but it was basically doing nothing. I ran check switch, so it was receiving OK, but was unauthorized, and had "Test Mode" written on the screen whenever you'd display any graphics.

    The instructions stated it would do an update, but it was doing nothing, so I decided to authorize it, and see if that helped. I used the online authorization, which worked OK, but still nothing. I did discover my 722's IR remote would work as remote #1, and was strong enough that I could stand by the door, see the screen, and work the DVR at same time. That alone was a big help.

    So anyway, decided to pull up tech-support chat, and see if they could help. I got sent to level 2 support immediately after I listed my issue. First the guy walked me through the process of pairing the remote - didn't work, duh. I've paired many remotes, and it's not rocket science, but wouldn't pair.

    He then said he would research if there were any known issues, and sure enough, 2 minutes later he comes back, and said there is an issue that the 32.0 remote will not pair with "factory software" on the DVR... wonderful. He told me to turn off TV1 and TV2 both for 30 minutes, and it should update. I said OK, and ended the chat.

    Shouldn't have done that...

    Soon as I drop chat, I realize there's no way for me to turn off both TV1 and TV2; the DVR seems locked into dual mode. I can press "mode" on front, and although the light changes to single/pip, it stays in dual mode. Turning off power turns off TV1, but without a 2nd remote (which the 922 doesn't even have), no way to turn off TV2, and I don't have TV2 even attached. WTF?

    So, with no way to pair remotes, the receiver unwilling to change to single mode and be turned off, I was in a bind. I was about to call up another chat session, but decided to go into the menus (old 722 style menus), and reset the DVR to factory defaults, wondering if that would take me out of "test mode", whatever that is.

    Well, by luck or just experimentation, I hit the jackpot. When I reset to defaults, the receiver went into a process where it received latest firmware (s114), downloaded program guide, and basically transformed itself into a 922, right before my eyes. After that, I was able to go into system info, pair the remote just fine.

    Since I'd backed up my timers (82) on the remote, I was easily able to restore them as well. (something Dish tech support told me can't be done, btw.)

    After sitting all night, the receiver seems to be working great, and has downloaded all the channel logos, etc. When I first turned it on this morning, I was greeted with a pop-up telling me "Congratulations, you are now Sling-Loaded!" which I'd never seen before.

    So anyway, key take away - the receiver did not come to me in a condition it is supposed to, or the instructions are old and need to be updated. Not being able to pair my remote with the factory firmware presented a major obstacle, with my receiver being in another room. Resetting it to factory defaults set into process the firmware updates, and channel guide updates, and now it's working great.

    None of this is stuff I haven't dealt with before, I'm a troubleshooter by heart, but it's kinda disconcerting that the process to do a direct replacement was so messed up, and the tech support help I got didn't really help me at all. I can't even imagine a less tech-savvy person, your normal Joe or Mary, trying to pull this off, can you?

    Love love love my dish, but man, sometimes you gotta jump through hoops!
     
  6. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    That's just weird.

    FYI, companies like Dish routinely will ship receivers with "old" firmware... and that is intentional because sometimes a particular release is considered most stable and most reliable to install... so they will leave it there to ensure that a customer can get up and running before needing to take the most current firmware.

    That said... I don't know why you would have really old firmware with the 922 as it hasn't had that many cycles really in its short life. Also, I'm unaware of ANY firmware that resembled the 722-style GUI... so I wouldn't even hazard a guess as to what happened there... unless perhaps there is some default GUI when NO firmware has been flashed at all to a 922?

    Anyway... this sounds like a quality-control issue with the refurb-dept if they are sending out 922 receivers in such a state. I'll pass the info along and see if anyone can find out what is going on and stop it from happening in the future.
     
  7. Rotryrkt

    Rotryrkt Legend

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    They are all shipped that way. I have had the same thing with my brand new one and two replacements. You have to put the receiver in standby or do the "reset to factory defaults" to force the download of the new firmware. The "factory" firmware uses the old 722 GUI. This is normal behavior.
     
  8. SButter1

    SButter1 New Member

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    I had a similar situation tonight when installing my replacement 922. I plugged it in, turned it on, only to find “722-like” menus. Nothing on the screen even remotely matched the great looking Connection Guide that came with the replacement receiver. I could not pair the remote. Fortunately the front panel was operational. After doing the obligatory Check Switch function and exhausting the usual menu options, I looked here and found this thread.

    The Restore Factory Defaults menu selection indeed did the trick and loaded the 922 firmware. However after loading the updated (correct?) firmware, the receiver front panel was non-operational. I tried to authorize through the Internet but the authorization function for the receiver was not present and the website instructed me to call for authorization.

    After a very lengthy authorization process (15 minutes), a longer program guide load and another acquiring satellite process, I was finally able to go to the front panel System Info screen and pair the remote.

    It’s clear from my experience and the others in this thread that Dish’s Indian remanufacturing partner’s QA process needs a serious overhaul. It’s unfortunate that the firmware loaded into the receiver during the refurb process in India doesn’t match the documentation and caused me to spend a frustrating 2 hours and Charlie to spend an hour of call center time.

    On the brighter side of this story, I was able to restore all my timers and favorite lists from the remote into the replacement 922. A great feature. (However, my locked channels were not saved.) I had transferred my recordings from my overheating 922 to an EHD and they are now in process of going back into the new receiver without problem.

    This is just another example of how Dish’s poor QA degrades what would otherwise be a great product. It’s tough being a Dish customer but after 11 years I’m used to it.
     
  9. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I think we can all agree that Dish is dropping the ball here. It sounds like new/replacement 922 receivers ship with an intentionally downlevel firmware that isn't good for much except getting it working... but nobody told the people writing the manual, so the setup guide is not much help in getting things going.

    There's no logical reason why you should have to "reset to default" a receiver that was just shipped to you. It should be at default settings already as the last step of whatever the refurb process is.

    That said...

    How do you know these are refurbished in India? And even if true, what does that have to do with anything? Dish bears responsibility for not training employees and checking to see that the refurb process is completed properly AND that the receiver is left in a state that a customer can set it up quickly without having to call tech support.

    IF you were just slighting India... please don't do that, as it accomplishes nothing and misses the otherwise good points in your post.
     
  10. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    Total misunderstanding of manufacturing processes.

    They does ship NORMAL receivers with FACTORY firmware,as for many other models.
    Doesn't matter if it brand new or came from same line after referbushing.

    The requirement to be reset to Default also been known for long time. Perhaps here is small quirk (perhaps complicated design of the DVR)..

    Factory FW with 722k's look is not an issue to discuss it lengthly - the markeing "922" model name is 722s and based on 722k design with added TI DAVINCI chip to supoort embedded Sling's features.

    Everything normal here. Just one small technical quirck - it wasn't in Default mode.
     
  11. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I'm pretty sure neither you nor I know fully the 922 manufacturing or refurbishment process... so it's hard to state anything with such absolution.

    As I stated, it would appear that receivers ship with a level of firmware that is not ready out-of-the-box to watch TV. This is different than other receivers. I know I have replaced a 622, and while it came with non-current firmware... it was not a stripped down older firmware that wasn't capable of doing anything but authenticating and updating like it sounds the 922 shipping firmware.

    Also... I still maintain that the user who receives a unit should not have to reset it to defaults. Defaults are what a unit is supposed to ship with! That's a large part of why they are called "default settings" because they are the ones you get your receiver initially configured with...

    Lastly, clearly users are NOT getting clear instructions with these receivers in order to get them up and running... thus the posts on the forum and the calls to tech support.

    Anyone who doesn't find this forum is out of luck and will have to call tech support... and that's not good business.
     
  12. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    While you often siding with the provider, this time you got it not 'right' way.

    Again, they are never promise you that (bolded) status of replacement.
    Many times those receivers came in Default mode, need to accept the fact (ask installers !).
    If you got refurb 622 with not a Factory FW, but slightly old, it's your luck. Don't need to make big waves here. ;)
     
  13. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I don't even understand most of what you just wrote there. Seriously, I don't.

    Undeniably Dish is shipping customers 922 receivers that do not have firmware that is ready to be used to watch TV and link remotes. Also undeniable is that the instructions that come with the receiver are insufficient to get the customer up and running.

    Also... if customers need to "reset to defaults" on their newly received 922... then that means it isn't shipping with default settings... which is completely nonsensical.. IF it doesn't ship that way, then when are they ever default settings?

    Last, but not least... I have replaced a 501 (long ago) and a 622 before... and in both of those cases the firmware that came on the receivers was sufficient to get the receiver up and running without me having to do anything other than run a check switch and wait for new firmware to download.

    Clearly something is different about these 922 receivers, as they do not appear to be shipping in a configured state that permits a customer to activate/use them without resetting it... which is something that should have been done before sending it to the customer.
     
  14. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    As I wrote a couple times - perhaps it was a quirk at that referb process - someone forget to push a few buttons on remote (I'm doubt it goes that way, but for regular customers it would be more understandable) or (I think it is the case) someone didn't make CLEAN PROPER DEFAULT EEPROM image or didn't load it during final stage of refurb line.
    It's a question to Sustain Group for discover root cause.
     
  15. SButter1

    SButter1 New Member

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    Stewart – I agree with you on the subject and I suspect the Dish engineering team does as well. The Connection Guide that is provided with the 922 replacement is a very user friendly document that describes a clear and easy process for an end user to install a replacement receiver and return the dead one to the factory. The issue here is that the refurb folks aren’t putting in the correct firmware. This may be a manufacturing QA problem or an engineering documentation problem, but it is a problem. Clearly we all should agree the product should match the documentation (or vice versa). If the documentation illustrated a different user interface and started with a Reset to Factory defaults, this would be fine too. If the documentation and product matched, this thread wouldn’t exist and would have eliminated many frustrated customers and costly call center calls. It can be done.

    This morning I installed a replacement 722. It’s firmware matched the documentation perfectly. The only issue I encountered was the documentation indicated I should be able to activate myself via my dishnetwork.com account and that option was not available. This is again, IMHO, another example of a QA problem.

    Regarding my comment about the Indian refurb partner: both replacement receivers I received this week were marked “remanufactured in India”. My comment was not intended to disparage Indian QA specifically but rather Dish’s QA in general. My personal 11 year history with Dish products and thousands of threads on this website are a clear indication that Dish should consider placing a little more emphasis on a corporate wide quality process.
     
  16. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    A funny thing about this... many years ago I worked as a Technical Writer in a Tech Support group of a software company. We had just put out a new product that was a BEAR to initially configure and get up and running.

    Our tech support group was taking calls on virtually every sale! So... several of us sat down and figured out the steps necessary to actually get the thing up and running... we pared it down to only necessary steps and I made it into a clear document with some pretty pictures.

    We tested it with our secretary. Now, I'm not disparaging secretaries here... just that ours happened to be very much non-technical outside of what her normal job entailed. She was able to get this device up and running in the marketing-desired 30 minutes.

    Our dept manager put the document up on the Web and we sent it to everyone who called in for help.

    Long story short... someone in the company didn't like us doing that... and we had to take it down, and they didn't correct the shipping manuals... and we went back to taking more support calls.

    Sometimes companies don't like when one side of the house disagrees with the other.

    Thank you for clarifying that. I hate to assume, but I see so much India-bashing, that my ears perk up whenever it is brought up!

    I honestly didn't know Dish was actually refurbishing product outside of the US. That honestly makes very little sense to me... to have product shipped from an ex-customer back to Dish in the US... then have it sent to India for refurb... then sent back to the US again?

    It's like... the other day I bought some individually wrapped SunMaid Prunes. They came in a large bag, and inside each prune is individually wrapped. It proudly says in big letters "from California prunes"... then in smaller letters says "packaged in China"...

    And I asked myself... ok... the prunes are made in the US... then they box them up to send to China, who has to open the box and put them all in another box to then send back to the US for distribution?

    This was made even sillier the other day as I saw a different container size of the same individually wrapped prunes... but these said packaged in the US on them...

    So I'm scratching my head at what possible savings there could be in outsourcing that work to China.

    The same would apply here to having someone in India refurbing Dish receivers that would have to be shipped back to customers in the US.
     
  17. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Gold Club DBSTalk Club

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    It has been many years, but my 211 and my 622 came with a version of firmware that could do little more than find a satellite and download something current. It focuses the receiver on getting done the things that should be done when the machine is first connected instead of giving the user a working machine that could change completely by the next time they use it.

    Keeping the refurb place updated with whatever the current software is plus any time in transit could easily made a factory loaded software non-current. So why not stick with a known firmware that is smart enough to find satellites and download the most current? Perhaps the machine(s) you have received were used but not completely refurbished?

    In any case, the manual needs to match what customers are getting ... and perhaps some day it will when either the manual is fixed or the refurb place gets a different level of default software to install.
     
  18. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    Small tidbit to the conclusions - the Factory SW is OK, but Config flags (those are reside in NVRAM - it's different place/chip) are not set to that mode what force particular machine(s) to download current FW from satellite.
     
  19. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Gold Club DBSTalk Club

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    They shouldn't need to. The normal firmware download commands via satellite should be received and matched to start a download.
     
  20. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    That could be true... which would explain my different experiences... but also would expose another hole in Dish's refurb process...

    Exactly. Whatever the level of firmware they ship, if it operated as expected from the instructions and permitted the customer to activate, download firmware, and begin watching TV... then this whole mess wouldn't exist as a thread.

    Absolutely.

    There is no reason that I can think of... why a customer shouldn't be able to unpackage a receiver, connect it up, plug it in, and power it on... and be a simple process to get it activated and downloading. There shouldn't be any requirement to reset or do things that your average customer isn't going to be able to do (or think to do) without calling tech support. It completely defeats the purpose of sending the receiver without a truck roll if the customer is going to have a bad experience and need to call.
     

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