|IMPORTANT NOTE: The following how-to method has been made obsolete by the improved WinMFS method. This how-to is for people who can't or don't want to use the WinMFS method, which is actually quicker and easier if you have access to a PC. The only change to their "Quick Start" method that I suggest is that on their step "7. Select Destination Drive", that you up the "Custom Linux Swap Size" to 1/2 of your hard disk size, but MB instead of GB. For example, if you're putting in a 500GB drive, use 256MB swap; if you're using a 1TB disk, use 512MB swap. This incrase does not significantly reduce your capacity (<1%) and greatly reduces your chances of getting the dreaded 'green screen of death' error.|
Below is a simple step-by-step guide for upgrading your TiVoSeries 3 or TiVo HD PVR to a larger capacity SATA hard drive using a Linux boot disk. It is similar tothe old Hinsdale method, but updated with newer tools that allow you toupgrade the larger 500GB+ drives.
This guide assumes you have a basic general knowledge of PC hardware. If youwould be comfortable plugging in a new CD-rom drive and executing a fewsimple unix prompt commands, you probably won't have much trouble withthis. If you want to buy an upgrade drive instead of making oneyourself, just visit a company on the banner above, they're all about the same. If you've tried this yourself and get utterly frustrated and want a pro to do it, I've done this for a hand full of people (oddly most have the first name 'Steve'), but I prefer to help you through the step that you're having trouble on. But if you find that you are utterly 'Steved', shoot me an e-mail at the address at the bottom.
What you need before starting work:
"What drive should I buy?"
As of Jan-06-10, the best drive for TiVo 3 and HD upgrades is the SAMSUNG EcoGreen F2 HD103SI 1TB 5400 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive. We do not make commission on this recommendation, we just think it's the best out there as of this date. We used to recommend 1.5TB capacity drives, but there are compatability issues that complicate things. 1TB allows for plenty of HD storage, but if you feel that you must have a larger capacity, please do your homework with researching specific drive models for your specific TiVo model. Unfortunately, I do not have the resources to help you with your search, but there are plenty of forums that can help.
"Does this work with the new HD version?"
This model works with anything with a TiVo logo on it that I'm aware of. The same method will work with Series 1 & 2 also, just make sure you're using a compatible hard drive, and that the jumper is set to 3.0Gbit/s.
"My TiVo image is corrupt, what should I do?"
Hopefully you kept your original drive image virginal and unused, and you can use this guide to start over from scratch. That is the most complete and safest way. You cannot use an image from another model, for example a TiVo3 image for a TiVo XL won't work. Search Google for "tivo backup images" for a way to back up from an original image, but I have not made a how-to for that process and cannot assist you, but the process has a lot of the same steps. If you end up giving up, the folks at Weaknees (link usually on banner above) will sell you a drive.
"Why do I get an error when I expend the partition (step 12)? It says that there is nothing to add."
You are probably trying to move from an upgrade drive to a new upgrade drive to save your recordings and season passes. My guide works best from the original drive to your first upgrade drive. If you have the original drive, try using that. If you're dying to copy over your shows and season passes from your upgrade drive, search around for info on using the 'mfstool add' function on WinMFS instead of mfstools. Users have reported successes using that tool instead, but I have not tried it myself so you're on your own.
"When I turn on the TiVo after the upgrade, why do I get error #51 or hardware failure error?"
You are probably using an image from another TiVo unit's hard drive. Go to 'Messages and Setup' -> 'Restart or Reset System' -> 'Clear and Delete Everything' to start over.
"I get a corruption error on step X, what's the deal?"
Either you followed a step incorrectly, or perhaps there is a hardware compatibility issue that I'm not aware of. If you end up figuring it out, let me know. If you are ready to give up, feel free to try the WinMFS method which we have also used and it works just as well.
Have another question?
I'll try my best to help, e-mail