U-Verse DVR hard drive upgrade while keeping the recordings
I have been racking my brain and the U-Verse box on how to upgrade the hard drive and still maintain all my recordings.
***Please remember you are doing this on your own and you are voiding the warranty and whatever else AT&T decides to do. I still don't know why they just don't install a bigger hard drive and save everyone the headache, or even give you the option to pay a little more and get it that way. Oh well
Upgrading the hard drive is as simple as removing the old hard drive and placing a new hard drive, the letting the system do its thing. You can see how that is done using this
After hours and hours of research and web searches I finally found this »forums.digitalspy.co.uk/showthre···t=984998 that show you how to upgrade the hard drive to a larger one, and still maintain the recordings. The explanation was good, but it didn't have all the details necessary to actually perform the upgrade, so I kept trying back and forth till I finally got it. I have to admit I would have never figured it out on my own. Now here we are with a solution, finally. I hope this helps others instead of them wasting their time.
I have only done this with the U-Verse VIP1225 that has a 250GB and upgraded it to a 1.5TB. Based on the posts and the amount of space I ended up with, 1TB is the max the system will recognize, but I already had the drive and it was 1.5TB and it was the green drive, still worked perfectly. The box I had had a SATA drive, I heard that older ones use ATA, so check before continuing, the procedure should still work, but I can't guarantee it. So I will do my best to outline the procedure:
1. Power off the unit and unplug it 2. Remove the hard drive as shown in the 1st link 3. Install a new hard drive, plug the power and let it boot. This took a long time, maybe 2 hours. Once it is done and the system is back up, you will see that the recordings show nothing and the space available is huge. 4. Do steps 1 & 2 again 5. Hook up the 2 hard drives to your computer and see what you have. You will notice that each drive has 2 partitions. The 2nd partition of each drive has the files you need.
****DONT MIX UP THE DRIVES WHILE YOU ARE LOOKING ON THE COMPUTER OR MODIFYING/COPYING THE FILES. YOU WILL LOSE YOUR RECORDINGS.
6. On the new drive in the 2nd partition, you want to get how many files are in the directory dvrvol. Write this number down you will use it later. 7. Wipe out the new drive and all the partitions; I used Disk Management for this. In Windows Start-->Run-->type diskmgmt.msc and that will bring up Disk Management. I deleted all the volumes in the new drive. Please be careful when using this, you could accidentally remove your OS, any important files, or the original drive from the U-Verse box. 8. Once that is done, use EaseUS Todo Backup Free to clone the drive: A. Select Clone --> Disk clone B. Select for Clone Source, the original U-Verse hard drive C. Select for Target Location, the new hard drive D. Check the box for Sector by Sector Clone E. Select Next F. Do not modify anything else. I know it shows that there is unallocated space, dont worry about it, the U-Verse box will take care of that. G. This will take about 2 hours 9. Copy the file dvr.mrt from the original U-Verse hard drive to your computers hard drive 10. The original U-Verse 250 GB hard drive had had in the dvrvol directory 193 slc files. My new hard drive showed 999 slc files when I viewed it in step 6. 11. Now we need to get the number of files in HEX format. You can use any online converter for this; I used this »www.rapidtables.com/convert/numb···-hex.htm. Based on the files I found the following: A. For 193 slc files -->C1 B. For 999 slc files --> 3E7 *This is from step 6 12. Now we have to convert these numbers to get the value we need. A. 1st we need to change the value to 4 digits by adding zero(s) to the front so 1. For C1 --> 00C1 2. For 3E7 --> 03E7 B. Next we need to move the last number to the front of then number: 1. For 00C1 --> 10 0C 2. For 03E7 --> 70 3E 13. New you need a HEX file editor. I used HxD which you can find at this »mh-nexus.de/en/hxd/. Once installed open the file dvr.mrt that you copied to your own hard drive in step 9. Dont mess around with the original. We need to modify decimal position 172 & 173 in the file 14. After the file opens go to Search --> GoTo 15. In the popup window check the dec box and type 172. At that position, you will find that the values for 172 and 173 are 10 0C. You will need to update them to the new values. In my case the new values were 70 3E. Save the file. 16. Now override the existing file in the new hard drive with the file we modified in step 15. 17. Install the hard drive and power up the system. In my case this took about ½ hour will it made all the necessary changes.
After completing this process you will find that the new hard drive has all your recordings and now show a lot of free space depending on the size of the new drive you installed. Let me know if you have any questions. I hope this helps everyone out there.
Thank you thank you thank you! The HDMI port on my IPN4320 went bad so AT&T sent an ISB7500 as a replacement. I have several programs that have not been aired since their initial run and are not available on DVD (documentaries, etc). This guide worked perfectly for me, even remembering scheduled recordings.
There was only one extra step: Once the new drive was completed and the box was reassembled, the box would put a large red "X" on the screen and all the lights would flash in error. I assume this happens because the firmware for the old device was present on the new hard drive. I held the power button for 10 seconds to restart the device, and it began the process of repairing and updating the drive.
In short, the Uverse DVR uses a formatting method not found on consumer pc hard drives and cannot be cloned with conventional software, so before you clone you have to let the DVR format the drive first.