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Loss of connection to HDHR

Post#181 » Wed Sep 02, 2015 7:26 pm

I have been experiencing VERY intermittent loss of connection to the HDHR tuner(s). The symptom is that the display will show a gray/silver colored screen background overlaid with a grid (rows and columns) of very small symbols, along with loss of audio. I have been unable to force it to occur by any manual sequence of events; it seems to occur "on its own". Frequency of occurrence varies widely; I may not see if for months at a time, but then it may reoccur twice in a day. I'm using the latest beta HDHR software

Unfortunately I do not have a screenshot to provide at this time.

It has occurred during unattended recordings; this gray grid pattern is actually recorded for the remainder of the scheduled recording, so it isn't an HDMI issue.

I have 2 Prime tuner boxes and 1 dual Clear QAM HDHR tuner (total of 8 tuners - 6 cablecard plus 2 clear qam). I have not been able to isolate the issue to a specific tuner or group of tuners but I suspect it only occurs when using the (cablecard channels) Prime tuners. Tuner priority in WMC is set to the Clear QAM tuners for local channels only so the vast majority of my channel sources use the 6 Prime tuners.

Right now I"m running with the 20150615 firmware package. The frequency of occurrence does seem to be reduced since using the prior release, but not completely eliminated. (I've had one occurrence on this FW, and it was during a scheduled recording). Something is generally either recording or being watched live between 4 to 8 hours every day.

Hardware: Windows 7 on Intel NUC D34010WYK executing Windows Media Center; recordings go to a USB connected external WD 2TB drive
Network: Netgear R6300V2 router running DD-WRT firmware; LAN is connected together via a Linksys DGS-1024P switch 24 port.
Tuners: (2) HDHR3-CC Prime, (1) HDHR3-US.

There is literally NOTHING I can see in the HDHR or Windows Event logs when this issue occurs.
Tuning to a different channel will restore operation.

Any ideas?
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Post#182 » Fri Sep 04, 2015 2:01 am

Here is an image that partially describes the issue. This specific image only shows the symptom in the bottom half. This specific capture was from a temporary occurrence that existed only for a couple seconds and went away. However, the symptom I referred to in the prior post is a complete freeze of the screen image that looks like the gray grid in the bottom of this image:
20150902_172854.jpg


Yesterday the issue occurred again. I switched from WMC in full screen mode to windowed mode; and the screen image changed to black, and stayed that way permanently after I put it back to full screen mode.

While the image was onscreen and frozen, I looked at the system log on the Prime - nothing there, only the 2 typical messages:
tuner: tuner1 streaming rtp to 192.168.1.20:5001
CableCARD: tuner1 223 Great American (auto:675MHz-208) access = subscribed

If I pull the network cable out of the Prime and quickly re-install it after several seconds, the stream "repairs" itself and normal TV viewing resumes from the affected Prime tuner. The same thing happens if I power cycle the Prime - but I suspect WMC just switches to a different Prime box tuner in that case.
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Post#183 » Fri Sep 04, 2015 2:30 am

Your issue sounds very familiar to what I like to call the 47-hour glitch. However, you have had the issue more than once a day - so we might be barking up the wrong tree here. Buuuuut... You do have 2 Prime CC units, and they could each be on a different 47 hour cycle.
Here is a rather in-depth thread on it. viewtopic.php?f=6&t=5927
I started the thread, and then a few months later a few others jumped in and were able to duplicate the problem - thus validating that I was NOT crazy. :)

The 47-hour glitch explained -
Every 47 hours, Windows will drop its connection with the Prime when tuned to a channel with copy protected content. It does not occur on copy freely programs. So, if you're using one of the bigger Cable Providers in the US - you've probably got a whole bunch of copy protected channels.
Example: Power up your HDHR Prime and PC @ 6PM on Monday night. Don't power cycle, reboot, reset, sleep, or hibernate the PC or Prime. On Wednesday evening @ 5PM, if you are watching/recording a copy protected program, the screen will lock and you'll lose your channel. And as you described - there are no logs or errors to account for this. If you tune away and right back again - everything is fine again. If you aren't watching/recording anything at 5PM on Wednesday, you're not there to see it happen.
Fast forward to Friday afternoon @ 4PM - you'll experience it again. And after awhile, those 47 hours will creep into the wee hours of the morning when you're less likely to be watching TV... and that's when it all begins to seem completely random.

Now - if you were to reset, sleep/wake, or reboot either the Prime or the PC before the 47 hour cycle completes, it resets the counter back to zero. And now you have another 47 hours from that time before it will happen again. Several of the folks in the forum I linked above went as far as creating a pretty sweet script to reboot the Prime unit when not in use before the 47th hour.

Hope this helps!
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Post#184 » Fri Sep 04, 2015 1:50 pm

HTBruceM wrote:Here is an image that partially describes the issue. This specific image only shows the symptom in the bottom half. This specific capture was from a temporary occurrence that existed only for a couple seconds and went away. However, the symptom I referred to in the prior post is a complete freeze of the screen image that looks like the gray grid in the bottom of this image:
20150902_172854.jpg


...

While the image was onscreen and frozen, I looked at the system log on the Prime - nothing there, only the 2 typical messages:
tuner: tuner1 streaming rtp to 192.168.1.20:5001
CableCARD: tuner1 223 Great American (auto:675MHz-208) access = subscribed

If I pull the network cable out of the Prime and quickly re-install it after several seconds, the stream "repairs" itself and normal TV viewing resumes from the affected Prime tuner. The same thing happens if I power cycle the Prime - but I suspect WMC just switches to a different Prime box tuner in that case.

I get the same sort of thing, only with high bit-rate TV shows. The fact that it happens with high bit rate streams suggests a network problem i.e. I might have a bad network cable or switch, or my PC's ethernet adapter might suck, etc. Or maybe the tuner is overheating. I thought I fixed it a few times (bigger/faster HDD and more RAM, those were upgrades I wanted to do for other reasons) but it keeps coming back, so it seems the best fix is power cycling equipment but I can't say for sure. It definitely happens more than every 47 hours, and with copy freely content.

HTBruceM wrote:Yesterday the issue occurred again. I switched from WMC in full screen mode to windowed mode; and the screen image changed to black, and stayed that way permanently after I put it back to full screen mode.

This might be a HDMI handshake issue. When I switch between desktop and WMC full-screen, my TV shows a brief black screen and reports reports the screen resolution. Occasionally I just get a black screen and no audio. This is solved by either turning the TV off/on or by switching HDMI inputs (i.e. the HTPC is HDMI 3, so if I get a black screen I go to HDMI 1 and then back to HDMI 3). Thus it seems to be a handshake problem between the TV and PC, not a tuner/WMC problem.

Your PC settings may be a bit different or your TV may be better than my Black-Friday Walmart budget TV, so you may not see a black flicker every time you swap but you might still get the occasional black screen for the same reason.
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Post#185 » Fri Sep 04, 2015 4:01 pm

To be clear, the problem I'm concerned with is appearance of the (full screen) gray grid pattern which remains on that channel; in both recordings and live TV.

As noted in the original post, this has occurred during unattended recordings as well as during live TV viewing. The gray grid pattern is actually recorded in the stream; in the buffer and in the TV recording (if there is one). Once it occurs, it remains until the channel is changed, the network is reset, or the Prime is power cycled. Remember that I have seen this occur in unattended recorded data - in that scenario, the TV isn't even on, so it seems very unlikely to be related to HDMI/HDCP. It seems to be corruption/loss of the stream (connection) between WMC and a specific HDHR Prime tuner.

This 47 hour is intriguing. It feels like a corner case programming bug somewhere (such as a memory leak, variable type mismatch, stack problem, etc.). But on which piece of SW? Prime FW? WMC software? Because the 47 hour cycle can be affected by a reboot of EITHER the HTPC or the PRIME, this gets even more puzzling; here must be some flow of code that is affected by a reboot of either one. Very odd. These types of issues can be very elusive and hard to replicate.

I just loaded the Aug 2015 FW update, so we'll see if that improves things or not. After that I think my own next step will be to disconnect one of the Primes to see if the problem was isolated to that one Prime. I think the chances are low that it is a hardware problem but it's worth a shot I suppose.
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Post#186 » Mon Sep 07, 2015 8:57 pm

Son of a $I@#...!!!! Exactly 47 hours later, it occurred again! So I am experiencing the same issue as UCBearCat. This time I was running WMC in a window instead of full screen and it just went black screen. At the time I was monitoring processes, network and disk activity - NOTHING unusual occurred. No spikes or dips or anything unusual compared to prior. No bread crumbs there. I confirmed that the data stream from the Prime is coming in as expected. The network activity continues to be the same as it was prior to the issue.

I do have one new piece of data to offer. I turned on closed captioning and it is "live", it is providing the closed captioning text on screen according to the live program content. Even though the screen is corrupt. As I continue to let it run, there is some random video data appearing along the top 128 pixel rows or so.

So... what this says to me is that the data stream from the Prime is coming in to WMC correctly (as proven by the valid closed captioning text overlay). There must be some sort of buffer overrun/corruption in the WMC software stack (IMO).

Posting edit (a bit later)... with more data.
I did the 411 INFO diagnostic screen and noticed on the rightmost menu (where the bitrate and frame rate is), the frame error rate and frame error counts constantly increment after you hit the above error condition and leave it in that state. I hit RECORD and it records the bad frames.
I also did a rewind in the buffer back to the exact point of failure. When I rewind before the event, the video playback is good and it consistently went black/corrupt at exactly the same point - at 1:11pm exactly.
You can get out of the mode by hitting STOP or switching to a different channel and back.
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Post#187 » Mon Sep 07, 2015 10:37 pm

I thought the 47 hour error is specific to the Prime. I haven't heard this happening with infiniTV's
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Post#188 » Tue Sep 08, 2015 3:43 pm

I'm pretty certain this is a HDHR Prime specific issue, as I've not heard anyone w/ Ceton hardware talk about it either. SD is aware of the issue, as it has been discussed on their forums as well as here - not to mention they admitted to me in one of my support requests that they had seen it before. In their own words, the Prime diagnostics showed the Prime reinitializing the connection to WMC - which is what breaks video stream of copy protected data. It was heavily inferred that this was a MS problem. They never bothered to investigate further or correct it before, so now that MS has abandoned WMC, they have no reason to bother with it. In looking at SD's site, they're practically considering WMC a dead product... add the fact that they are building their own DVR.
My best suggestion to HTBruceM at this point is to consider a workaround for the problem as the rest of us have. Consider building in some type of script to restart your PC, the prime, or the WMC services... Basically anything to "reset" the 47 hour counter.
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Post#189 » Wed Sep 09, 2015 6:28 am

I read the other threads on this 47hr thing. Thanks to all those who worked on isolating this issue and developing the workaround script.

I think I'll implement the script too, and I plan to just reboot my two Primes rather than the HTPC.
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Post#190 » Mon Sep 28, 2015 6:58 pm

It probably wouldn't be a bad idea I get an out of memory message occasionally when I turn the TV on and have to grab the keyboard to close out of it. I have had the issue all along though even when I was using Ceton. I'm planning on minimizing WMC as much as I can.
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Post#191 » Wed Oct 07, 2015 5:26 pm

Well one month later, no repeat of the corrupted Prime feed after implementing the nightly Prime reset.
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Post#192 » Sun Dec 06, 2015 7:49 pm

Pretty sure I just experienced this exact thing while recording/watching College Football Playoff. I too have a HDHR Prime. About 40 minutes into the recording it goes to the gray screen. I rewind and playback and it goes to gray screen at the exact same point. I tuned to another channel and then back and it works. Rebooted PC and tried the recording again, same thing. I've never experienced this issue before. Does this sound like I'm describing what everyone else is here?
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Post#193 » Sun Dec 20, 2015 9:29 am

Anybody know why Playboy, Penthouse, Etc. are missing from the HDHR channel selection list. They are (or were) included in my Ceton system.
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Post#194 » Sun Dec 20, 2015 10:30 pm

Crash2009 wrote:Anybody know why Playboy, Penthouse, Etc. are missing from the HDHR channel selection list. They are (or were) included in my Ceton system.


Got it.....The channels are not available from the Signal Provider that I selected during TV Setup. Brighton is just 45 miles from here.
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Post#195 » Mon Feb 01, 2016 2:43 am

nathagt wrote:Pretty sure I just experienced this exact thing while recording/watching College Football Playoff. I too have a HDHR Prime. About 40 minutes into the recording it goes to the gray screen. I rewind and playback and it goes to gray screen at the exact same point. I tuned to another channel and then back and it works. Rebooted PC and tried the recording again, same thing. I've never experienced this issue before. Does this sound like I'm describing what everyone else is here?

Yep I'd say so. You hit the 47 hour thing at that specific time of the recording.
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Post#196 » Sun Feb 14, 2016 5:17 am

I got a letter from Comcast saying that they are changing HD format to use MPEG-4 technology beginning on or about 2/23/16.

the letter said that cablecard is compatible, but that I have to check to see if my equipment will support the new format.

I'm using:
WMC on Windows 7 Home Premium with Service Pack 1
HD HomeRun Prime (HDHR3-CC)
Xbox 360 white
Xbox 360 Slim
Xbox 360 E

do I need to change anything?
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Post#197 » Sun Feb 14, 2016 2:10 pm

gary94080 wrote:I got a letter from Comcast saying that they are changing HD format to use MPEG-4 technology beginning on or about 2/23/16.

the letter said that cablecard is compatible, but that I have to check to see if my equipment will support the new format.

I'm using:
WMC on Windows 7 Home Premium with Service Pack 1
HD HomeRun Prime (HDHR3-CC)
Xbox 360 white
Xbox 360 Slim
Xbox 360 E

do I need to change anything?


We are not quite sure at this point. The manufacturer declares the hardware is compatible. Software, apparently is not working "for some".

viewtopic.php?p=100744&f=6#p100744
viewtopic.php?p=99345#p99345
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Post#198 » Tue Feb 16, 2016 11:40 pm

Crash2009 wrote:We are not quite sure at this point. The manufacturer declares the hardware is compatible. Software, apparently is not working "for some".


thanks, I guess I will just have to wait and see.

with the end of WMC in the horizon and the guide switch over problems and the ever moving roll out of a functional SD HD Homerun DVR I am almost at the point of giving up and going to the dark side (X1 Xfinity DVR)
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Post#199 » Wed Feb 17, 2016 2:39 am

gary94080 wrote:
Crash2009 wrote:We are not quite sure at this point. The manufacturer declares the hardware is compatible. Software, apparently is not working "for some".


thanks, I guess I will just have to wait and see.

with the end of WMC in the horizon and the guide switch over problems and the ever moving roll out of a functional SD HD Homerun DVR I am almost at the point of giving up and going to the dark side (X1 Xfinity DVR)
That is not quite as Dark as the Side I was thinking about.

Check out some of the links in this post.

Its not as bleak as some make it out to be.
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Post#200 » Thu Jun 16, 2016 6:15 pm

My HDHR shows green lights for the left 2 lights, but the 3 right lights are blank. I have Win 7 and WMC cannot see any tuners. I've been running this setup for a couple years now and it just stopped recognizing in WMC. Once in awhile WMC may say it doesn't see tuner and either rebooting PC or rebooting HDHR fixes the issue, but not this time.

Tried setup for WMC again but it doesn't see any tuners. I can login to PC and open HD View application and see all the channels just fine in that viewer. Its just WMC that doesn't see the tuners.
Any trouble shooting tips? I tried unplugging modem, router, hdhr, reboot PC. I recently switched routers, but after that I was able to record and work just fine for about a day.
So not sure if its something wrong with HDHR device or WMC or router or setup that I need to re-run.

Any help is greatly appreciated!

Thanks,
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