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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There are SO many threads about eSata and hard drive replacement. I know all about the warranty issues, etc. I want to replace (upgrade) the INTERNAL hard drive of an HR21, if its easy to do and no technical gotchas (beyond the warranty issue.)

I'm looking for the thread that simply describes procedure for removing cover from the HR21, to see if there are any gotchas before I start. Although I get massive numbers of hits from a search, I can't quite find what I am looking for. Can anyone give me a pointer to specific procedure for replacing the HR21 hard drive, or simply summarize if there are any things to be aware of upfront ? Thanks.
 

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The Shadow Knows!
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Sorry, you know I have to say this, please understand this.

The most important thing to be aware of is that if you need to swap out your HR21 for any reason, not only are you out a hard drive, but you will be charged around $470 for having opened the case in violation of your customer agreement (presuming you're on a leased HR21, as almost everyone is.)
 

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Stuart Sweet said:
Sorry, you know I have to say this, please understand this.

The most important thing to be aware of is that if you need to swap out your HR21 for any reason, not only are you out a hard drive, but you will be charged around $470 for having opened the case in violation of your customer agreement (presuming you're on a leased HR21, as almost everyone is.)
Before "the band wagon" starts up, the above "bold" should have "may" added to it. DirecTV will have every right to charge you, if they want to.
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you. I understand the warranty issues. Related to this - is there a seal such that they can tell the unit was opened ? (I dont have the HR21 yet - just ordered it, and am interested in doing an upgrade first thing, before recordings on it.) My thought was just to put the old hard drive back in in the event that I ever had to ship it back to them.
 

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Mentor
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Keeping the above warning in mind . . . It's very easy to remove the white sticker without damaging it, many people have stated their units never had a white sticker.

The hardest part of the upgrade is tracking down the proper security torx bit to open up the case and remove the drive.

Once you have it opened up, it's just a matter of unplugging the old drive (two connections) and plugging in the new drive.

When you have it put back together, just power it up and the unit will automatically format the drive and you're off to the races! It really couldn't be any easier.

If you have a problem with the unit, put the original drive back in BEFORE you call D*. They'll never know you were inside, unless they dust for fingerprints . . .

Name withheld for security reasons!
 

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The Shadow Knows!
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tombet said:
Thank you. I understand the warranty issues. Related to this - is there a seal such that they can tell the unit was opened ? (I dont have the HR21 yet - just ordered it, and am interested in doing an upgrade first thing, before recordings on it.) My thought was just to put the old hard drive back in in the event that I ever had to ship it back to them.
Yes, there is a tamper-evident seal. Also, as one who has been inside of a DIRECTV DVR with DIRECTV's permission I can tell you that depending on your level of expertise it can be quite easy to foul things up in there or at the very least make it obvious you've been in there.

I know I'm not going to convince you not to do this, but I'd just like you to consider the upsides and downsides of doing so.
 

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veryoldschool said:
"I think" all of the "21s" have stickers, [mine does] while "some" 20s didn't.

Also, remember this does fall under "hacking" which is against the forum posting rules.
Sorry, :confused:

I always thought "hacking" was defined as attacking the software side of computers, where this would be an upgrade to the hardware.

I was just restating things I've read in other posts where there was no comment/warning about "hacking".
 

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intelisevil said:
Sorry, :confused:

I always thought "hacking" was defined as attacking the software side of computers, where this would be an upgrade to the hardware.

I was just restating things I've read in other posts where there was no comment/warning about "hacking".
Modifying hardware also falls under "hacking", even in the computer world.
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Ok Stuart - you actually did convince me. Though it would be cleaner for me not to have the little external eSata box, I don't need the potential hassle down the road. (I'm pretty confident in my ability to do it as discreetly as possible, but still...) So I'll get the same KingWin eSata enclosure I've been using without even one hiccup for over a year now with my HR20-700.

btw, Clemsole: According to the Directv shipping notification, they have shipped me a HR21-200, not an HR22. (If that turns out not to be the case when I get it, I'll let you know.)

Thanks for the posts - I'm still inclined to just swap the internal, but the rational side of me says its just not worth the potential hassle down the road. The little enclosure is not that big or unsightly. (And certainly not expensive, just $30 including shipping.)
 

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veryoldschool said:
Modifying hardware also falls under "hacking", even in the computer world.
I disagree that it's hacking. If you Google "define: hacking", all the definitions describe illegal activity, circumventing security, destroying data, disrupting access, stealing, breaking, disabling, etc. Upgrading the hard drive would not come under any of those activities. While it might be against D*'s rules for this to be done on a leased receiver, it's not illegal and it not being done to chedat D* in any way.

I consider upgrading the internal hard drive in a leased HR2x the same as making alterations or modifications to a leased vehicle, such as adding a satellite radio, tinted windows, fancy rims, roof rack, etc. As long as what I do to the leased vehicle does not damage it and is completely reversible, then it's not an issue. If I do damage the vehicle in the process, then that's my problem. And as much as car lease analogies don't fit D*, I think this one does.

I don't see discussion of this as violating the "no hacking" rule on DBSTalk. Of course the moderators may disagree with me, but I have not seen that to be the case so far. I'd say that as long as the discussion always comes with a clear warning that opening the cover will void the warranty and lease agreement and may result in fines and charges, there shouldn't be a problem in discussing it.
 

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rudeney said:
I disagree that it's hacking. If you Google "define: hacking", all the definitions describe illegal activity, circumventing security, destroying data, disrupting access, stealing, breaking, disabling, etc. Upgrading the hard drive would not come under any of those activities. While it might be against D*'s rules for this to be done on a leased receiver, it's not illegal and it not being done to chedat D* in any way.

I consider upgrading the internal hard drive in a leased HR2x the same as making alterations or modifications to a leased vehicle, such as adding a satellite radio, tinted windows, fancy rims, roof rack, etc. As long as what I do to the leased vehicle does not damage it and is completely reversible, then it's not an issue. If I do damage the vehicle in the process, then that's my problem. And as much as car lease analogies don't fit D*, I think this one does.

I don't see discussion of this as violating the "no hacking" rule on DBSTalk. Of course the moderators may disagree with me, but I have not seen that to be the case so far. I'd say that as long as the discussion always comes with a clear warning that opening the cover will void the warranty and lease agreement and may result in fines and charges, there shouldn't be a problem in discussing it.
VOS is usually correct. I would say "always" but that would put a terrible burden on him. Your analogy about cars is interesting. How would you reverse the tinted windows and the roof rack? I've never leased a car and am curious about this. The wheels and the radio are easily removed, but you'd need a body shop and a auto glass shop for the other two examples.

Rich
 

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rudeney said:
I disagree that it's hacking. If you Google "define: hacking", all the definitions describe illegal activity,..... it might be against D*'s rules for this to be done on a leased receiver....I'd say that as long as the discussion always comes with a clear warning that opening the cover will void the warranty and lease agreement and may result in fines and charges....
Perhaps this is either opinion, or semantics, but the parts of your own reply, seem to be contradictory.
Breaking a [legal] lease agreement, seems "illegal" and as such there are fines and charges.
This is somehow different than getting a speeding ticket? :confused:
 

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Stuart Sweet said:
Yes, there is a tamper-evident seal. Also, as one who has been inside of a DIRECTV DVR with DIRECTV's permission I can tell you that depending on your level of expertise it can be quite easy to foul things up in there or at the very least make it obvious you've been in there.

I know I'm not going to convince you not to do this, but I'd just like you to consider the upsides and downsides of doing so.
Yep, It's not designed to be dissassembled like a desktop computer.. Takes a bit more finness to take apart and it's easy to break something in the proccess..
 

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veryoldschool said:
Perhaps this is either opinion, or semantics, but the parts of your own reply, seem to be contradictory.
Breaking a [legal] lease agreement, seems "illegal" and as such there are fines and charges.
This is somehow different than getting a speeding ticket? :confused:
Breaking a civil agreement, is not illegal. If it were, you'd have people in jail for lots of fun things - such as not paying their cell phone bill that they are disputing.

Sorry, this is a particular pet-peeve of mine. I'm sure DirecTV would *love* for you to actually believe opening their box is "illegal". So far, our rights have not been eroded quite enough yet for this to be the case.

Now, it certainly IS breaking the contract you agreed to when receiving the box. Read the contract to understand the penalties, and also understand DTV can sue you for their damages.

-Phil
 

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Phil21 said:
Breaking a civil agreement, is not illegal. If it were, you'd have people in jail for lots of fun things - such as not paying their cell phone bill that they are disputing.

Sorry, this is a particular pet-peeve of mine. I'm sure DirecTV would *love* for you to actually believe opening their box is "illegal". So far, our rights have not been eroded quite enough yet for this to be the case.

Now, it certainly IS breaking the contract you agreed to when receiving the box. Read the contract to understand the penalties, and also understand DTV can sue you for their damages.

-Phil
So you're distinguishing between "civil and criminal" law.
One has fines and the other has fines/confinement, if found guilty. If you are subject to fines/charges, how can it not be "illegal"?
 

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Éminence grise
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rudeney said:
I disagree that it's hacking. If you Google "define: hacking", all the definitions describe illegal activity, circumventing security, destroying data, disrupting access, stealing, breaking, disabling, etc. Upgrading the hard drive would not come under any of those activities. While it might be against D*'s rules for this to be done on a leased receiver, it's not illegal and it not being done to chedat D* in any way.
When the term hacking first came out, it was not referring to anything illegal, but for those who did their own legal, but often unofficial modifications to software and hardware
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hacker_(programmer_subculture).

When the term began to be applied to illegal activity, there was even a Hacker's Anti-Defamation League website which pointed out the differences (and suggested "cracking" be used instead) but the usage has become so common that the site seems to have disappeared.
 

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Godfather
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veryoldschool said:
So you're distinguishing between "civil and criminal" law.
One has fines and the other has fines/confinement, if found guilty. If you are subject to fines/charges, how can it not be "illegal"?
The concept of guilty/not guilty does not exist in civil law.

The other poster is right. Breaking a contract is not "illegal" as you use the term.
 

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Phil21 said:
Breaking a civil agreement, is not illegal. If it were, you'd have people in jail for lots of fun things - such as not paying their cell phone bill that they are disputing.
OK. You actually sound as if you know a bit about this. If breaking a civil agreement is not "illegal'', what is it? If I give you a check for, say, $15,000 and it bounces, isn't that a civil agreement gone bad? And, as the cost of those violations of civil agreements goes higher, don't you find people getting put in jail? And if you can get incarcerated for writing bad checks, doesn't that make breaking a civil agreement an illegal act?

Now, it certainly IS breaking the contract you agreed to when receiving the box. Read the contract to understand the penalties, and also understand DTV can sue you for their damages.
But, doesn't the fact that a fine may be levied or can be levied because of an act that is known to be against the lease agreement make that act "illegal"?

Rich
 
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