After a few good years of service, my TiVo has finally died on me. Specifically, the modem has died, meaning that the little “Dialing…” spinny ball just keeps spinning and spinning and spinning, all the while never even grabbing the phone line. I’m at the point where television without TiVo is pretty much unthinkable, so now I get to go out and buy a new one, as well as fork over the money for the service plan. (It’s pretty irritating that the “lifetime service plan” for my current TiVo dies alongside the machine… I guess that’s how they make their money, though.) Since I’m still convinced that TiVo is the brand to get, I guess I’ll partake in the current $50 rebate; I’m just pissed that I didn’t take advantage of the offer to transfer service to a new box when I the promotion was running back in March.)

Anyone have any better ideas?


You could hook it up to the network in your house, no? Assuming you have a model that can deal with broadband; if it has a USB port on the back it’s certainly worth a shot as a USB-ethernet or USB-802.11b adapter won’t set you back nearly as much as an entirely new TiVo!

• Posted by: brian w on Sep 29, 2003, 12:12 AM

Sounds like you have a Series 1 TiVo. Before you shell out for a new box (and a new service contract), try hacking it. You could get one of those TurboNET doodads from to give you an ethernet port. And while you’re at it, you could replace the hard disk (which will probably fail sometime) with a newer larger one. And while you’re doing that, you could put a web server on the TiVo and ….

See the O’Reilly “TiVo Hacks” book or the many web sites on hacking TiVos.

And let me know if it goes well, and then I’ll hack my TiVo too.

• Posted by: idiolect on Sep 29, 2003, 2:08 AM

Hey, go turbonet, it’s great! I’ve done it myself… so you clearly won’t have any problem doing the install.

• Posted by: houledude on Sep 29, 2003, 6:40 PM

Hi, check the TiVo community hacks section. Somebody a week or two ago figure out how to make an external modem work with the TiVo through the serial port, I believe. All that’s required is to hook the modem up to your computer, open a modem terminal session, and reset the modem with a string that’s provided at the TiVo site. Then you plug it into the TiVo and go.

If that’s not working for you, talk to a guy on the TiVo community site called ElectricLegs. for more info.

• Posted by: widget on Sep 30, 2003, 9:55 AM

Here’s the Tivo Community thread about using an external modem. I must say, we are living in a magical time. Good luck!

• Posted by: widget on Oct 3, 2003, 2:48 PM
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