HD Box crashed - Simultaneous recording issue

SteveBM

Active Member
I know this is a well documented fault, but just wanted to raise that it's still happening.

My TV viewing last night was:
1) Watch play-offs on SkySports1HD
2) Record Dirty Sexy Money on C4HD
3) Record Have I Got News for you on BBC1

We were a bit late sitting down for the football so we watched it about 10 minutes behind "live"

At 9:30, when Have I Got News for you finished, the HD Box crashed.
After about 10 minutes, it whirred into life again.
Upon inspection in the planner, I have a failed recording of the football - So I missed the last 10 minutes of the match.
Dirty Sexy Money reocrded fine
Have I Got News For You is showing as Clashed. :thumbsdow

Would really appreciate if anyone can confirm whether a workaround is available for this issue. Any ideas if Sky are working on a fix? :lease:

Cheers
 

mattclarkie

Novice Member
Sky don't even acknowledge it as an issue.


The most likely cause is either undervolting of the CPU when under heavy load, or it simply doesn't have enough memory to buffer the recordings.


Either way it requires a major re-design on the box.
 

fredsie

Active Member
Would really appreciate if anyone can confirm whether a workaround is available for this issue.
Not really. I think in the circs you describe at one point the system was trying to record three things at once: DSM finished at 9, HIGNFY started at 9 (I expect you've got a bit of "early start/late finish" buffer set) and your "chase replay" of SkySports also counts as a recording.

You might have got away with it without the buffers, but then you run the risk of missing the start or end of something. You just have to have to be aware of any point at which three recordings might be happening at once. :(
 

mattclarkie

Novice Member
In the case of 2 recordings finishing at the same time one starts the box is meant to not pad the recording if you have Auto Set, but I have noticed that it often doesn't do this if you are timeshifting, sometimes it does, often it doesn't.

This causes the biggest issue. What you have to do is save the Time Shift recording a few minutes before the next programme starts by pressing record, and then watch it via the planner instead of Live Pause. That way you shouldn't lose any of the programme, and hopefully the automatic recording management would stop the box crashing.
 

Jaycee Dove

Novice Member
I never trust this box to record two HD things at once. In my view it is simply underspecified to cope with this level of processing.

When Freesat has a Humax PVR in July I will get one to record any Free HD stuff and let the Sky donkey work on what it can handle.

I suspect these problems are connected with the padding between recordings and that this is linked to the other major bug that loads have but Sky seem disinterested in...the problems you can get recording two programmes back to back.

Here, if you have any padding set (Auto included) then once every few times the second recording shows as recorded but freezes the box and will never play. You have to press the Sky button even to escape as no other buttons respond.

There IS a way around that and it might be worth trying it in case it solves the above issues as well.

Reset your Sky + padding to zero minutes before and after.

It solves the back to back issue by eliminating any overlap period. May well not work if you are using two tuners, but you never know.
 

mattclarkie

Novice Member
I never trust this box to record two HD things at once. In my view it is simply underspecified to cope with this level of processing.

When Freesat has a Humax PVR in July I will get one to record any Free HD stuff and let the Sky donkey work on what it can handle.

I suspect these problems are connected with the padding between recordings and that this is linked to the other major bug that loads have but Sky seem disinterested in...the problems you can get recording two programmes back to back.

Here, if you have any padding set (Auto included) then once every few times the second recording shows as recorded but freezes the box and will never play. You have to press the Sky button even to escape as no other buttons respond.

There IS a way around that and it might be worth trying it in case it solves the above issues as well.

Reset your Sky + padding to zero minutes before and after.

It solves the back to back issue by eliminating any overlap period. May well not work if you are using two tuners, but you never know.

Which freezing problem are you getting? The one where it wont play the recording and gets stuck on the synopsis screen, or the one where it freezes a few seconds into playback. If it is the second one starting the playback at about 6mins and then going back usually fixes it, but the first one is unfixable.
 

HDCriticalFan

Novice Member
Hi SteveBM

Yes, this is a well documented problem (in this forum at least).

As far as I know it started after the Anytime update (in the summer of 2007 ?) and is still ongoing (even if you turn Anytime off !)

It often comes up under the name of "chase play", "dual record" or "back to back recordings" problem.

In fact it seems to basically come down to "a box sometimes crashes as a recording ends IF you are also watching a recording".

It doesn't have to be the "same" recording. When it *is* the same recording you will find people often call it the "chase play problem".

The upshot is that the recording which is ending is trashed (marked as "failed" and unplayable). As a result of the box restarting any other ongoing recordings get restarted too - automatically erasing the already recorded portion. I haven't tried it, but if you "pull the plug" and don't let the box restart until later, you may be able to preserve the earlier portion of such a recording. However it is more likely that this first portion will also be unplayable. On the plus side the recording that you were watching is unaffacted.

We live in hope of Sky providing a fix - perhaps as part of the new EPG "later this year" ?

In the meantime there is one sure fire workaround. Don't watch recordings when recordings are about to end. If you just look at the planner and wait for the recording indicator to stop then you wil be fine. Yes, I know, it is a pain.




HDCriticalFan

I am a fan ... but I remain critical.
 

SteveBM

Active Member
A quick note to thank everyone for their responses so far.

In response to an earlier post above, DSM on C4HD finished at 9pm, and HIGNFY started at 9pm, so I don't think I was rescording two things simultaneously, whilst timeshifting. I do however, appreciate the comments about "padding" at the end of an recording and can see why this might fool the box into thinking it was recording three things at the same time.

Thanks again everyone.
 

Jaycee Dove

Novice Member
Which freezing problem are you getting? The one where it wont play the recording and gets stuck on the synopsis screen, or the one where it freezes a few seconds into playback. If it is the second one starting the playback at about 6mins and then going back usually fixes it, but the first one is unfixable.
It was the first one that only zero minutes padding seemingly prevents. Not had a problem since using that.
 

Urban Splash

Active Member
Interesting thread.

This happens to me all the time. So much so that I simply can't record HD and watch a sky+ HD programme at the same time.

Roll on the new HD box.....
 

fredsie

Active Member
Interesting thread.

This happens to me all the time. So much so that I simply can't record HD and watch a sky+ HD programme at the same time.

Roll on the new HD box.....
It it's that bad you have a different problem. Have you checked your signal strengths recently?
 

Urban Splash

Active Member
It it's that bad you have a different problem. Have you checked your signal strengths recently?
Signal Strength/Quality for both input 1 and 2 are fine. All nearly full.

No way I can tape HD and watch HD at the same time. It usually happens at the end of a programme, which results is a failed notice.
 

HDCriticalFan

Novice Member
Hi Urban Splash.

Can you please clarify your comment "it happens all the time" ?

Do you simply mean it is something that regularly happens (perhaps as often as once each evening) or do you literally mean that EVERY time you watch a recording whilst another is being made in the background then the box crashes at the end of the background recording ?


For myself I know from bitter experience that this is an ongoing problem, and could be described as "continual", but is is not "all the time". For instance, whenever I do a test by setting up a recording and then watching another recording ... it doensn't fail :eek:(

Murphy's law I guess.




Regards

HDCriticalFan

I am a fan ... but I remain critical
 

Urban Splash

Active Member
Hi Urban Splash.

Can you please clarify your comment "it happens all the time" ?

Do you simply mean it is something that regularly happens (perhaps as often as once each evening) or do you literally mean that EVERY time you watch a recording whilst another is being made in the background then the box crashes at the end of the background recording ?


For myself I know from bitter experience that this is an ongoing problem, and could be described as "continual", but is is not "all the time". For instance, whenever I do a test by setting up a recording and then watching another recording ... it doensn't fail :eek:(

Murphy's law I guess.




Regards

HDCriticalFan

I am a fan ... but I remain critical
Well to qualify the statement, I would say that it has happened each time I was in a situation where I was recording HD and watching HD.

Now, if there is something on in HD and I'm already HD recording, then I wont bother, as when the recording programme ends, the box will crash and I will loose the recording
 

Bachstrad

Novice Member

Jaycee Dove

Novice Member
Services -> Sky + Setup -> Add to start of recording, add to end of recording.

It starts /ends recordings early/late so you don't miss bits.
Make sure that you change both the before and after to ZERO minutes and not Auto. The latter can still involve some padding but ZERO ends the recording and starts another at exactly the set time. This prevents the need for a period of overlap when both tuners are in use. This happening seems to be why boxes crash or fail recordings during the overlap with padding - especially if you do something like watch a recording.

It has the disadvantage that you can miss the end of an overrunning programme - which is why we need Sky to get to grips with and sort out this issue.
 

HDCriticalFan

Novice Member
Reading between the lines of what Urban_Splash says ... and what SteveBM states explicitly ...

... I don't think that changing (or removing) padding will have any effect (other than miss bits of the begining and ends of programmes).


Specifically SteveBM talks about watching the footy about 10 minutes behind live whilst HIGNFY started, recorded and finished ... and crashed the box. I think that removing padding will just have made the crash happen 2 mins earlier.

It may very well be that removing padding helps alleviate problems caused by back-to-back recordings (where I can see that there is going to be a fight for access to the LNBs between different channels), but I'm not sure that is the problem here.






Regards

HDCriticalFan

I am a fan ... but I remain critical.
 

Urban Splash

Active Member
I am of the opinion that the current HD box is not engineered to deal with more than 1 HD recording/viewing at the same time. The tech is pretty old hat now. The next gen HD box should be a leap forward.

I have not tried recording 2 HD programmes and watch a sky + HD recording at the same time. I presume the box would blow up my house, and the street, maybe the town....
 

mattclarkie

Novice Member
I am of the opinion that the current HD box is not engineered to deal with more than 1 HD recording/viewing at the same time. The tech is pretty old hat now. The next gen HD box should be a leap forward.

I have not tried recording 2 HD programmes and watch a sky + HD recording at the same time. I presume the box would blow up my house, and the street, maybe the town....
Actually I have done that successfully with the padding at Auto with no issues. So the box can handle it if the planets allign.
 

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