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Legend
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191 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I upgraded to the HR20-700 almost 2 years ago for the HD Recorder features. I suffered through a year of growing pains. Finally in November 2007, with release 0x1ea, I had a reliable HD Recorder. I was a happy camper for about 6 months. Then on May 7, 2008 I got 0x22d, the update from hell. Since 0x22d, I've had way to many blank screen recordings and recently DVR freezes following PAUSE. I don't need Media Share or VOD, I only want a reliable HD Recorder.

Solution. Provide those of us that only want an HD Recorder a way to rollback to 0x1ea until you fix the recording problems in the current national release. You can use something similar to how the CE releases are downloaded.
 

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Godfather
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467 Posts
jfm said:
I upgraded to the HR20-700 almost 2 years ago for the HD Recorder features. I suffered through a year of growing pains. Finally in November 2007, with release 0x1ea, I had a reliable HD Recorder. I was a happy camper for about 6 months. Then on May 7, 2008 I got 0x22d, the update from hell. Since 0x22d, I've had way to many blank screen recordings and recently DVR freezes following PAUSE. I don't need Media Share or VOD, I only want a reliable HD Recorder.

Solution. Provide those of us that only want an HD Recorder a way to rollback to 0x1ea until you fix the recording problems in the current national release. You can use something similar to how the CE releases are downloaded.
There are many threads on this same subject - one recent is asking for a way to block updates.

The issue I have with this process it that DirecTV is installing software changes into a production environment and leaves the user with no way to back it out in case it causes problems. It is simply bad IT practice to install new software onto live boxes without a way to back it out if it causes problems. And no matter how many times you test it in test; you cannot reproduce a live environment.

And it is not the same that happens on a pc. All of Microsoft's recent operating systems include "restore" point applications for these types of problems. DirecTV seems to have taken the position that if it causes unforeseen problems in prod, then the users can wait until the next upgrade to get it fixed - Amazing.
 

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The Shadow Knows!
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37,060 Posts
JFM, I'm sorry to hear about your troubles of late but there is no rolling back to 0x01EA. If you're still having black screen recordings or pause problems, please let us know in the issue threads.
 

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Legend
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191 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Stuart Sweet said:
JFM, I'm sorry to hear about your troubles of late but there is no rolling back to 0x01EA. If you're still having black screen recordings or pause problems, please let us know in the issue threads.
Stuart, You are right, I've gotten a little lazy. I have reported both problems in previous issue threads and the Official Blank Recording site (multiple times). But I probably haven't reported them in the latest NR thread. I'll do that now.
 

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Legend
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191 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
jjohns said:
There are many threads on this same subject - one recent is asking for a way to block updates.
I read that thread but didn't post there because I don't want to block updates, I want to roll back to a version that worked. A lot of the reasons that were given in the block updates thread for why blocking release was not feasible was that D* couldn't support multiple versions of firmware. I would gladly sign a release agreeing that the oldere version is not supported by D*. As you said, Microsoft, Symantec, Intuit, etc. all allow me to use old versions of their software without product support. PS. D* CSR is a last resort anyway. I get 99.9% of my answers here on dbstalk.
 

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Beware the Attack Basset
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jjohns said:
It is simply bad IT practice to install new software onto live boxes without a way to back it out if it causes problems. And no matter how many times you test it in test; you cannot reproduce a live environment.
Like it or not, backing out of updates cannot be an option in an item of consumer gear. Support is inconsistent enough without the confusion of having to place the CSRs of the context of one of many old releases.

DIRECTV's failure to employ standard software testing procedures fosters an environment where bugs seem to get fixed and then reappear randomly. Until they get serious about employing proven testing methods, this is the way it is going to be.

As fun and empowering as the whole CE process may be, it hasn't proven to be able to permanently squash some of the fundamental bugs that continue to plague the DIRECTV branded receivers.
 

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Hall Of Fame
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harsh said:
Like it or not, backing out of updates cannot be an option in an item of consumer gear. Support is inconsistent enough without the confusion of having to place the CSRs of the context of one of many old releases.
If you call D* with a problem, the CSR is just going to have you reboot or try another electrical outlet. What part of different software releases would make that hard to support?
 

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Godfather
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467 Posts
I’m not sure if it’s the frequent updates that are so bothering as much as it is you just know it’s going to be for some feature you don’t want, and there’s a good chance it’ll bring another bug to the table.

For what D* charges, this unit should do two things extremely well – audio and video. Audio stuttering and video sync has plagued this box for a long time. Yet updated versions have been installed way too frequently without solving the basic audio and video issues.

This forum archives posts. Look through a couple years or more of posts. You read page after page of “My sound stutters or isn’t in sync.” Or, “It’s not recording” “I have a blank screen”. Basic stuff. It is very frustrating to see basic problems brought up time and time again over what is now turning into years.
 

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Hall Of Fame
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harsh said:
DIRECTV's failure to employ standard software testing procedures fosters an environment where bugs seem to get fixed and then reappear randomly. Until they get serious about employing proven testing methods, this is the way it is going to be.
No one outside of DirecTV can really make a statement like this with any validity to it. Just because an issue appears to have the same symptoms doesn't mean that it's the same or even a related bug that is causing it. Especially in something as unspecific as gray/blank recordings.

While I don't think it's ever going to happen I almost wish that D* would allow people to roll back to a previous version just because I think a lot of people would be surprised to find it didn't fix all their issues. Yeah it may seem like the issues started when the software update hit but there isn't any way to test it out so it is only an assumption.
 

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Hall Of Fame
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Both this thread and my 'block update' thread would indicate there is at least a 'little desire' for people to keep their dvrs from updating. I think an auto-update (on/off) setting would do the trick. Or perhaps, a simpler solution would be to allow us to enable/disable the update using the website.

Is there a wish-list petition we could start?
 

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Lifetime Achiever
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BattleScott said:
Is there a wish-list petition we could start?
Yes, actually, there is (HR2x Wish List) .. however, I'm certain that this is something that is not going to change.
 

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Godfather
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385 Posts
evan_s said:
Yeah it may seem like the issues started when the software update hit but there isn't any way to test it out so it is only an assumption.
If a user has experienced a perfectly working box for 6 months, receives a software update, and then the box flakes out the next day, that's an assumption? When nothing has changed with their dish, m/s, wiring, BBC's, clouds, rain, snow, animals, children playing with remotes, etc.? That's not an assumption, that's common sense.
 

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Doug Brott said:
Yes, actually, there is (HR2x Wish List) .. however, I'm certain that this is something that is not going to change.
My pessimistic nature leads me to believe that you are correct.
But if it is not asked, then it definitely won't change.

It is posted in the WL thread if anyone wants to chime in...
 

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Beware the Attack Basset
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evan_s said:
No one outside of DirecTV can really make a statement like this with any validity to it.
Sure they can. They may have even hired someone from outside the company to confirm it.

A review of the results of their efforts tells us that they're having a lot of trouble implementing a consistently functional DVR.

If a fundamental functional problem like blank recordings or IKD comes and goes for 23 months without being fixed, there's something flawed in the process. Like John McClane from the Die Hard movie franchise, it just keeps coming back.

The more features you add without entirely eradicating the existing problems, the harder the fundamental problems are to fix. If the problems had been correctly identified and fixed along the way, they wouldn't be reactivated through the addition of new (and seemingly unrelated) features.
 

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Godfather
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467 Posts
harsh said:
Sure they can. They may have even hired someone from outside the company to confirm it.

A review of the results of their efforts tells us that they're having a lot of trouble implementing a consistently functional DVR.

If a fundamental functional problem like blank recordings or IKD comes and goes for 23 months without being fixed, there's something flawed in the process. Like John McClane from the Die Hard movie franchise, it just keeps coming back.

The more features you add without entirely eradicating the existing problems, the harder the fundamental problems are to fix. If the problems had been correctly identified and fixed along the way, they wouldn't be reactivated through the addition of new (and seemingly unrelated) features.
Well said.
 

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Registered
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harsh said:
If a fundamental functional problem like blank recordings or IKD comes and goes for 23 months without being fixed, there's something flawed in the process. Like John McClane from the Die Hard movie franchise, it just keeps coming back.

The more features you add without entirely eradicating the existing problems, the harder the fundamental problems are to fix. If the problems had been correctly identified and fixed along the way, they wouldn't be reactivated through the addition of new (and seemingly unrelated) features.
...which may all explain why they have put new features on a hiatus for a bit now in favor of "stability" being the main focus....those actions speak louder than words. :D
 

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The Shadow Knows!
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37,060 Posts
OK. If you read this site a lot you've read my posts a lot, cause heck... I have a lot of them. I hope you have found that I try to be fair, I try to be polite. I hope that comes through.

But, I have to give you a straightforward and honest answer here, and I'm going to post this exact same thing in the other thread on this same issue:

It's not going to happen.

Our members who frequent the DLB threads often ask for a straightforward statement from DIRECTV. I don't work for them, but I do know a few people there. So let me say it again.

It's not going to happen.

I understand how frustrating it can be not knowing all the facts of the situation and I try to share the things I can. I can share this... there is not now, nor will there ever be, any option on a DIRECTV-branded receiver to download anything but the current CE or national release, and there will never be an option to turn off automatic updates.

I choose not to close this thread, because there's no reason to close it. I just hope you understand that no amount of discussion will change this.
 

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Legend
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127 Posts
Directv will never implement any blocking software update feature for one reason. Software updates also update satellite part of the receiver to make them aware of new satellites, transponder changes, etc.
 

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jfm said:
Finally in November 2007, with release 0x1ea, I had a reliable HD Recorder. I was a happy camper for about 6 months.
I too wish I could go back to those happier days! :lol:

Instead I'm switching to Dish. They guy is supposed to be here this afternoon (if he shows.)

I don't expect better CSRs, I don't expect better PQ quality nor content. But I do at least have a hope of having an HD DVR that functions properly, and a slightly cheaper package.

I never thought I'd pick hardware over content, but there you go...

BTW, a big thanks to all the fine folks here at DBSTalk for all the help in dealing with these beasts. I'll still be hanging out on the Dish side, although hopefully not as often. ;)
 
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