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Re: [Fsfe-uk] Explanation of Tivosiation and problems - comments sought

From: Chris Croughton
Subject: Re: [Fsfe-uk] Explanation of Tivosiation and problems - comments sought
Date: Mon, 18 Dec 2006 13:24:26 +0000
User-agent: Mutt/1.3.28i

On Mon, Dec 18, 2006 at 12:54:57PM +0000, Ciaran O'Riordan wrote:

> Chris Croughton <address@hidden> writes:
> > for
> > anyone in the UK it falls flat on its face because TiVo have done none
> > of those things here
> Tivo boxes sold in the UK don't send customers' view habits back to Tivo?

No, they don't.  There was a lot of fuss about that when the American
ones started doing that, and they confirmed that the software used in
the UK doesn't do it.  We pay a 10 pound per month subscription fee for
the EPG data (or nothing for people who bought a 'lifetime' subscription
for 200 pounds up front).

> > Nope, it doesn't fail on mine or any other UK TiVo.
> If you modify the software, will the computer act the same in terms of
> communicating with Tivo's servers?  (Assuming you change something that
> doesn't break that)

Assuming I don't break it, yes.  The version on my Tivo at the moment is
not the original (I didn't modify it, others did).  Not all the original
hardware, either, since it has a 3rd-party network card.  It even
communicates with their servers over my broadband connection, when it
was designed to use a modem over PSTN.

> If you add a button to the software which makes a copy of the data, will you
> still get the data and will the button work?

I don't know how to make a button on it (the only buttons are on the
remote), but I can pull the raw data from it and convert it to standard
MPEG format using FTP or similar protocols over TCP/IP (which are other
3rd party addons), and the data will still be there (unless I explicitly
delete it).  That was certainly also true with Series II (US) ones,
because some of the software only accepts their format.

If I could be bothered to work out their database format and how to use
the API (which has documentation about the level that man pages in Unix
v3 had, i.e. pretty poor) and learn Tcl to a reasonable level then I
could write my own utilities to modify and extract it.  As it is I find
that the ones other people have written are adequate for my needs.

(Actually, there are no Tivo boxes sold in the UK now, except on eBay
and the like, Thompson stopped making them quite a few years ago.  They
are all maintained by independent users, some of whom sell their
services to those who can't or don't want to do it themselves.  Rather
like the idealised free software concept of services..)

Chris C

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