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Before you can install or Use TyTool...

You will need to hack your TiVo to enable networking with a minimum of telnet and ftp installed and working.  The details involved with getting networking functional are beyond the scope of this document, but if you are fairly technically inclined, you will find it to be fairly straightforward and will only consume an evening or two.

Warning #1: Installing networking will void your TiVo's warranty.  If something goes wrong, the manufacturer will not fix it under warranty.  The risk of damaging the hardware is significant.  The risk of damaging the software or the TiVo configuration possibly to the point the TiVo will no longer work is fairly high unless care is taken and you make sure you know what you are doing before you set out to modify the TiVo.  These hacks are not illegal, but they are not supported by the manufacturers, the retailers, or TiVo inc.  Proceed at your own risk.  You may want to have an expert upgrade the TiVo for you.

Warning #2: There are sharp edges and potentially hazardous voltages present inside the TiVo.  If you don't know what you are doing, don't attempt this upgrade.  Neither the manufacturers, the retailers, TiVo inc., or the various authors of software for the TiVo can or will be held responsible if you injure yourself while trying to upgrade a TiVo.  No one has told you to do this, so don't try to blame either the TiVo hacking community or the official TiVo manufacturing and distribution chain if you hurt yourself or anyone else.  Again, proceed at your own risk.

Warning #3: Back up your TiVo prior to changing anything on the hard drive!  You will be doing some fairly low level monkeying around with the initialization files and running partitions when you attempt the upgrade, and the chances of making a mistake are good.  A healthy backup can save you a tremendous amount of grief, even if you are an expert.  Don't even THINK of trying to blame anyone else if you crash your TiVo's hard drive and don't have a good backup on hand.  See warning #1.

All that said, upgrading your TiVo can be fun and rewarding, albeit occasionally somewhat frustrating.  Your mileage will no doubt vary.  Instructions for upgrading the TiVo and online support can be found on the TiVoCommunity Forum, the Deal Database Forum, or at the 9th Tee website.  Briefly, upgrading your TiVo entails the following:

1. Obtain a TiVo upgrade disk, either a Linux boot floppy or Linux boot CD.  There are a number available.  The TiVoCommunity Forum has all sorts of information concerning upgrade CDs.  Some have canned TiVo upgrades on them.  Many are free, or if you have a Series I TiVo (Satellite or Stand Alone) or a Series II DTiVo you can obtain a very reasonably priced upgrade from PTVupgrade.

2. Power down your TiVo and remove its hard drive(s).

3. Install the hard drive(s) on a clone PC.  Take care to make note of which IDE chain hosts the PC hard drive and CD and which chain hosts the TiVo hard drive(s).

4. Boot to Linux and do a backup of the TiVo to the PC's hard drive.

5. Copy the software to the TiVo's partitions in the appropriate places.

6. Edit the Linux startup files to run the networking protocols and drivers at startup.

7. Shut down the PC and replace the hard drive(s) into the TiVo.

8. Install the appropriate hardware on the TiVo.  Which hardware depends on which TiVo you own (Series I, Series II, etc.)  Series I units will need a TurboNet or CacheCard installed internally. Series II units will require an external USB - Ethernet adapter.

9. Put the case back on the TiVo, power it up, and pray.

10. If praying didn't work and you are greeted with the dreaded Green Screen Of Death (GSOD), get out your backup (you do have a backup, don't you?) and contact the folks on Deal Database Forum or TiVoCommunity Forum.

Installing TyTool...

Once ftpd and telnetd are working on the TiVo, installing TyTool is simple.

1. Obtain the latest copy of TyTool.  If you wish to employ Frame Accurate Editing, you will also need to download a recent version of cygwin.dll for your PC.  Both are available in the Extraction, Insertion, and Streaming Support forum on Deal Database.  Josh Dinerstein, the author of TyTool, is also a moderator there, and helpful support of TyTool and other TiVo hacks can be found on the Deal Database Forum.

2. Unzip the archive(s) on your PC into a convenient folder, keeping the folder information in the archive.

3. Telnet to the TiVo and cd to a convenient folder on /var.  The /var partition is mounted as read-write, while the other partition is mounted as read-only and should remain so except for maintenance.  Create a directory for TyTool by issuing the mkdir command, or use an existing folder, if you choose.  A good choice is /var/hack/TyTool, or the default in the TyTool shell is /var/hack.

4. When you unzipped the TyTool archive on your PC, it will have created two directories under the target directory.  One holds the TiVo executables for Series I units, the other for Series II units.  Change to the directory appropriate to the TiVo on which you will be installing the software.  Run an ftp client on your PC and open a session to the TiVo.  Transfer the two files tserver and NowShowing.tcl from the appropriate directory on the PC to the chosen directory on the TiVo.

5. Return to the telnet session and cd to the new directory.  Issue a pwd command to confirm you are in the correct directory.  Issuing an ls -l * command will confirm the existence of the two transferred files and verify their permissions.  Both need to be world executable.  The result of the ls command should look something like this:

-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 545 Jan 23 2004 NowShowing.tcl
-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 545 Jan 23 2004 tserver

If the display looks more like this:

-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 545 Jan 23 2004 NowShowing.tcl
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 545 Jan 23 2004 tserver

then the files do not have execute permissions. In this case, issue the following command:

chmod a+x *

Another ls -l * command should show executable permissions for the files.

Update: The most recent build of tserver, courtesy of DealDatabse Username Jamie, eliminates the need for the NowShowing.tcl script and the -s option in tserver.

6. If you like, create a shortcut to the TyTool shell.  It should be of the form TyToolxryy.exe.  At the time of this writing, the most recent version is TyTool9r18.exe.

Configuring TyTool...

TyTool only requires a minimum of effort to get up and running in a default configuration.  There are a large number of advanced configuration settings, but those are covered in the Advanced Topics section of this help system.

1. Run the main shell executable.

2. In  the main screen, enter the IP address or hostname of the TiVo you wish to control.

3. Below the address, enter the local directory where you want TyTool to place all the program files transferred from the TiVo and to look for all the source files (.ty, .cut, .key, .mpg, etc.) used to create media files.

4. Under the File pull down menu, select the type of file you wish TyTool to create when it transfers a program from the TiVo.  The default is a .ty (raw) file, but you may also choose to transfer split (separate audio and video) or multiplex (.mpg) files.  More discussion of file types can be found in Advanced Topics.

5. Under the Options => Networking pull down menu there is a parameter for the transfer socket mode.  Series I users in particular will want to select the Double Socket Mode transfer, as it will increase performance significantly.  In addition, in order for Double Socket Mode to work, TyTool must know the correct IP address of the PC on the network containing the TiVo.  In the pull down will be listed all the active IP addresses for the machine at the time TyTool was launched.  If the wrong IP address is selected, choose the correct one from the list.  If the correct address does not appear in the list, select the Refresh Network Address utility to scan the machine again for newly added or deleted IP addresses.  If the address still does not appear, the network interface may be down or disabled.  Check your network settings in the OS.  Do not confuse this IP address (of the PC) with the IP address (of the TiVo) found in the main screen.

6. Under the Server Pull down menu there is an option to set the tserver execute string.  If the user chooses to use the built in tserver startup utility to run tserver on the TiVo and the directory selected in step 3 of the TyTool installation is not the default /var/hack directory, then you must enter the correct path for the executables.  The form of the string should be

/<directory>/tserver -s /<directory/NowShowing.tcl

where <directory> is the pathname in UNIX notation where the executables are to be found.  An example is

/var/hack/TyTool/tserver -s /var/hack/TyTool/NowShowing.tcl

Update: The most recent build of tserver, courtesy of DealDatabse Username Jamie, eliminates the need for the NowShowing.tcl script and the -s option in tserver.

Using TyTool...

The first step when using TyTool is to activate the tserver binary on the TiVo.  This executable will handle all file operations on the TiVo as requested by TyTool, including getting the Now Showing List, deleting programs, and transferring programs.  The easiest method is to run tserver from the Server Pull Down menu in the main shell. Click on <Server> => <Start tserver>. See above for directions on configuring the Execute String which runs tserver.  If the user wishes, there are two other means for running tserver externally discussed in External Options.

Once tserver is running on the TiVo, Select <Refresh> in the main shell.  This will obtain a current Now Showing List from the TiVo.  Select the programs to transfer in the Now Playing window and click on <Get>.  TyTool will transfer the programs to the PC and save them in the format specified in the <File> => <Network Options> section.  See File Types for more information on file formats.  Once the video files have been transferred, the user may choose to shut down tserver.  Further processing of the transferred files will not require any interaction with the TiVo.

From this point, what the user does will depend on his intended use for the extracted files.  If the user wishes to simply watch the program on the PC or to burn it directly to DVD without editing or creating menus, he may quit TyTool now.  If this is the case, the user would best be served by having transferred the file already muxed (.mpg or .VOB).  Otherwise, the user may choose to edit the file using the GOP editor, and perhaps to create an IFO fileset along with a menu and other options.  Click here for information on using the GOP editor.  Click here for a brief overview of creating an IFO file set.  A more advanced discussion of IFO file sets can be found in File Types, or a more detailed discussion of the Create IFO Shell can be found in the IFO Shell help section of Advanced Topics.


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