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Old 03-10-2016, 10:56 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default DVR Drive Encryption

Does anyone know how to encrypt a replacement hard drive to work in an Arris DVR box?
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Old 03-10-2016, 12:00 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

Arris DVR box? Like the one the cable company provides for you? Why replacing the drive?
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Old 03-10-2016, 06:14 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

A momentary power-outage during rain caused everything on the box (saved, programmed, and erased) to disappear (though recording was still possible at the time)...I took the drive out to try to recover the files, but while I had it plugged into my computer running a scan, I accidentally knocked it off of the desk and it went kaput (will try to run for about 20 seconds after power is connected to it but then stops--and is also no longer recognized by computer or DVR ).
As it is a rental box (because that's basically all they allow these days, it seems) and we could be fined for me having opened it (despite the fact that I did contact the company for help first and they weren't helpful), I'm trying to do what I can to fix it.
It's not really my wheel-house, but I've been trying to figure it out. Bought a drive that initially seemed comparable, but seems that the particular one is pretty evasive. The drive(s) we got fit in the machine physically but are unrecognized by it, and I was told by someone that there's a specific encryption needed in order for the box to recognize/read it. I contacted Arris, as the person had said that it might be something either downloadable from their site or available upon request, but they were unhelpful also.
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Old 03-11-2016, 06:37 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

You probably should put the original drive back into the cable co.'s dvr box. Did you break and security seals when you removed it? If not then return it to the cable co for replacement (just say "it don't work no more" with a look of bewilderment) and with the replacement dvr, try connecting an external hdd to the sata port on the back of the dvr
Charter.net DVR External Hard Drive Port (eSATA)
Don't attempt to open the replacement dvr box, when the hard drive inside the dvr gets too full, it will by default delete the first movie that was recorded to make room for a new recording.
If you broke any security seals,
I've heard that it can take longer than an hour for the dvr to install the os onto a new hard drive, so if you want to, try leaving the new drive in it for a while before trying it out
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Old 03-11-2016, 07:31 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

I didn't take it out due to it being full...It was a power-outage that caused all of the saved content to disappear...I took the drive out to run recovery software (which seemed to be working), but accidentally knocked the drive down damaging it apparently beyond repair. :-\
I had read in one article that software sometimes automatically downloads to replacement hard-drives, but that doesn't seem to be the case here (or it needs some kind of additional formatting or something). After testing the drive out and seeing that it wasn't recognized, we did leave it in, but I don't think that anything has changed with it. So, unless it's a drive that wouldn't work with the box, I think this system requires some kind of encryption (I can't imagine that it would not be possible to replace the drive, as I think that that's what a company would do with a damaged box in refurbishing it to further capitalize--but, that's what the manufacturer tried to tell me...however, I think that that's what they're told to say and they have concerns regarding piracy or whatnot). The software that recognizes channels and runs the guide has been functioning (not sure if that's something ingrained in the box or the cable card perhaps), but it's working like a non-recording cable box as opposed to a DVR (and was doing the same with the drive completely out).
I had sort of looked into external expansion in the past...But, this wasn't in an attempt for more space (initially--though when I bought a drive, I got a larger capacity one [not sure if that might be part of the issue]).
I wouldn't be comfortable being deceptive about the box--though I also don't agree with the rental-only system or exorbitant rates the company charges, and as there are some visible signs that the box was opened, they'd be likely to see that anyway, and we'd probably be penalized for it. :-\
If I can't find a way to encrypt the drive that we bought, I'm trying to see if I can find someone with the same box that I could get the hard drive from or something. I also don't want to return it without possibly sending the drive to my friend for a deeper recovery attempt. (Not that it's as important as a drive with personal files--I have some of those that I've still not been able to recover (:-()--but it's extremely frustrating that we had like 150+ things on there that we now can't access and could be difficult and costly to reacquire.) (It's also extremely frustrating that this whole thing happened initially because of an issue with a power outage, and then because the cable company was not being helpful...Even though the data was still there and recoverable, they just tell people that if you can't see it it's not there.)
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Old 03-11-2016, 08:07 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

+1 to Joe's response. Hard drives fail all the time. I would stick that original drive back into the box and call the company and tell them it's not working. They'll just replace it and you'll be fine. Unless you broke security seals, they have no way of proving that you did anything to it. Even so, they can't prove that the seals weren't broken when you got it.
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Old 03-11-2016, 09:24 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

Did you try looking in the menus of the DVR to see if there was an option to format the drive so it was usable to the DVR?

Joe's and MidnightShadow's suggestion is good - put the old one back, and get the entire DVR replaced.

Also...the cable company isn't responsible for power outages damaging boxes...you are. Get a good battery backup (UPS) and put all of your important electronics (TV, computer, DVR, router, etc...) on it so that if/when your power goes out again, it doesn't cause issues with the plugged in components.
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Old 03-17-2016, 03:49 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

Most of the devices are hooked up to surge protectors, but blink-off outages fry devices--It has happened to us at least 4 times...and if we take precautions, that is not on us.

Regardless, I would not know where to look as far as finding a menu option to format the drive, but I think it would be highly unlikely that this box would have that.

According to an article that I read, a lot of boxes will automatically format any drive to work with them...However, it seemed to indicate that "Passport" devices were an exception, and the software that our cable company uses is "Ravi" which is a "Passport" program to my knowledge/related to it.

Neither of the new drives that we purchased worked, so I bought the same exact box off of eBay--only difference being that it was from a different cable company (which I thought only effected the cable card itself and that cable cards programmed by one company could be used in another device and so forth--or so previous info. had indicated). So, we took the drive out of the seemingly pristine box and put it into ours, but our box still wouldn't recognize the drive--It functions as a cable box...Channels and Guide work, etc....But, it can't detect the drive/doesn't have DVR functions as it did or should. I couldn't think of any reason that the drive from the same exact box model wouldn't work in our box with our cable card. (It is possible, though, that the damage that I did trying to hastily remove the drive after the initial problem could've rendered that part of the machine unusable or something [some of the prongs are out-of-whack...Though, they are supposedly connecting when the drives are put in]).

So, then, we tried it the opposite way--Put the unbroken drive back in its original box and put our cable card in the box, but even less happens that way...We can't even get anything to come up on the screen after it powers on. Even with the wrong cable card and no drive in our original box, it does more than that--just isn't getting the channels...but stuff comes on the screen. Is it possible that the circuit boards in the DVRs are coded to the specific cable companies and their software? Any suggestions on how to make this work?...Because, it seems like we have everything that we would need for it to.

Please contribute any ideas about how to make this work.

~*Kristin*
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Old 03-17-2016, 05:09 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

Quote:
Originally Posted by VeganStar85 View Post
Most of the devices are hooked up to surge protectors, but blink-off outages fry devices--It has happened to us at least 4 times...and if we take precautions, that is not on us.
That's why I specified battery backups - not just surge protectors. Battery backup will kick on if power "blinks" and devices connected to the battery will have continuous / clean power.
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Old 03-17-2016, 07:03 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: DVR Drive Encryption

I used to work for BT many years ago, and the DVR device they provide to customers had two partitions, one with a custom OS, and the other formatted for storage. Even thought box had a chip with a basic boot ROM, the actual OS was on the hard drive. So you might have a similar situation, and may need to clone a working drive, or download an image, if you could find one. As your replacement drive might not be able to do anything without the OS image.

This could be different for your box, but thought I would share that info, as it might give you a starting point.
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