Problem: Mpg files transfered to TiVo (s3) have length of 00:00:00

nrnoble

New member
This problem has been discussed in various different TiVo forums (mostly to converting DVD movies). Including in this forum
http://www.videoredo.net/msgBoard/showthread.php?t=6486&highlight=TiVo&page=2

To clarify the problem specifically. A mpg video such as a DVD movie is converted into a single mpg file using various tools like AnyDVD & VideoReDo (or DVD shrink, DVDDecrypter, etc). This mpg plays back fine on the PC as as well as on several other video devices, but when the mpg is transfered to the TiVo, the transfer stops mid way through and on the TiVo using the info button the mpg has a length of 00:00. No error is displayed on the TiVo. The mpg on the TiVo plays fine up to the where the transfered stopped.

Does anyone know why the transfer stops mid way? It is different for every mpg, maybe 5 minutes, maybe 10, or 75 minutes. So far I have not be able to determine if a mpg is good\bad until the transfer has stopped (complete\incomplete).

I'd love, and willing pay money (which is one reason I bought VideoReDo), for a bullet proof method to convert mpgs that will work a very high percentage of the time with my S3 TiVo. Right now my success rate is less than 10% when transfering PC -->TiVo.

I am looking to understand why the mpg stops transfering mid way 90% of the time for me. The S3 acts as if it has encountered an end-of-stream marker, thus terminates the transfer considering the transfer has completed succcessfully. Maybe it hits a stream error and aborts the transfer, but if it does, the TiVo does not display any errors\warnings.

I am very technically savvy, so I'm not bumbling around hoping to get lucky. I copy my DVD movies into a single vob (no trans-coding\compression to fit into a DVD). I use VideoReDo to Quickfix the streams, then using TiVoDestop I upload the mpg to my S3. No matter how many times I upload, it stops exactly at the same spot. If I start all over again by copying the movie from DVD, the results are exactly the same each time; if it first time the transfer stops at 17 minutes, the same is true for the 2nd, 3rd... 10th, times.
 
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dlflannery

Moderator
Just some ideas...

Could there be a 2 GB limit involved somewhere here? (Probably not.)

Have you looked at pyTivo? (Big thread on TivoCommunity forum and a forum of its own also - just Google) It might transfer your files like DeskTop, without transcoding, or it might transcode to a new mpeg2 that your TiVo likes.

pyTivo development is starting to send mpeg4 files directly to HD/S3 tivos now. You could use HandBrake (free - just google) to create a .mp4 version of the DVD video. This would have reduced storage requirements in case you are archiving the videos.
 

nrnoble

New member
Thx. Puzzler I guess. Been a year trying to figure this one out; I'll keep digging until I find a solution.
 

Dan203

Senior Developer
Staff member
The very first thing I would do is pull the plug on the TiVo itself and allow it to do a hard reboot.

The second thing I would try is pyTiVo instead of TiVo Desktop.

If you try both of those and still have this issue then I would suggest cutting a smaller segment out of the file and see if the works. For example if it always dies on minute 17 then cut out 15-20 and try transferring that segment. If it fails at minute 2 then you know it's a problem with the file. If not then you know it's either a network issue or file size issue. If it does then upload the segment to our FTP and send us an email and I'll check it out.

Also are you using a wired or wireless network? Wireless networks are notoriously unreliable with TiVo. If you have to use a wireless network then I would recommend using the TiVo brand adapter and router/access point capable of running one of the open source firmwares like DD-WRT.

Do you happen to be using Kaspersky anti-virus? There is a known conflict between Kaspersky and TiVo transfers because TiVo transfers use HTTP and Kapersky caps them at 2GB for some reason.

Dan
 

txporter

New member
What are you using to actually create the single mpg file? 17 mins is a reasonable time for that to be the first transition from the first 1GB VTS to the next. Whenever I have seen 0:00 for the transfer length, it was become I poorly joined the VTS chunks into 1 file.

You can try a program like VOB2MPG to join them all into one, or if you install the latest beta for VideoRedo Plus, you can get an open DVD folder option from the pulldown. Quickstream Fix normally fixes all of these issues for me, but it sounds like you use that already.

If you use VideoRedo to combine the files already, do you use Combine or Join? I have had better luck combining the files rather than joining (highlight multiple files from the Open Files.. menu and it will ask you if you want to combine or join).

I tend to always re-encode my DVD rips, since I burn in the subtitles. I have had good luck with XVID4PSP for rips to just about any format, or Handbrake to h.264. I open the VIDEO_TS folder directly from both programs rather than combining first. Since the ability to push h.264 encodings to TivoHD/S3/XL with pytivo, I have began encoding everything as H.264 with handbrake.

Jason

P.S. To install pytivo with the ability to push H.264, go to this thread and get the latest windows installer for wmcbrine's fork of pytivo. Once you install it, you will need to go to wmcbrine's git repository and download the latest zip file (newest version). Unzip this and drop all of the files in the pytivo directory that the installer created. Let it overwrite any file it wants to.

Reboot.

Fire up your browser and go to localhost:9032. You will need to enter your MAK into pytivo to enable pushes and pulls and will need to enter your tivo.com username and password in your pytivo.conf file [Server] section. More information on this is here (2nd post). After all of that is set up, you can go to your Tivo shares folders (whatever local folders your defined for pytivo) in your browser (from localhost:9032) and push the files. If you use metadata, push looks at Title, seriesTitle, episodeTitle, and seriesID. Read through the thread I linked about pushing h.264 encodings to understand more about how these work.
 

nrnoble

New member
Thanks guys for the feedback. pyTivo is next on my list to try because it could be something about how I have TiVo Desktop setup.

Software Firewalls, viruse protection, and other sorts of intrusive monitoring software is not likely to be the problem because I either have chosen not to use them, or I use them very sparingly in a manual mode. I run a very clean & isolated system in part because I have several different computers, each having a specific function.

Wired network, no wireless connections with my TiVos. I have S3 & a humax, and transferring show between them works just fine. It is only PC --> TiVo problem.

In an effort to solve this specific problem I have used pretty much every ripper that is on everyone's top 10 list, but mostly I have settled on AnyDvd. The results are pretty much the same between all the rippers; If transfer fails at specific point, its universal between the mpg copies ripped from different software.

I shall put some thought into H.264. So far I have not because I not concerned about HDD space (I have about 5 TB of storage). My priority is to maintain the the original video\audio quality and keep the process as simple as possible.

Outside of this specific problem I am trying to solve, I am very happy with my decision to purchase VideoRedo TV Suite. I use it pretty much every day and have no complaints.
 

nrnoble

New member
dlflannery,dan203 & txporter.

Thanks for taking the time for the various suggestions. This problem has been resolved. It was one of type of problems that unless you had it yourself, or someone else had, it is would be hard to suggest a fix. In my case it has nothing to do with the video files directly (as I had wrongly concluded). What I did to fix my problem was setup another system to do the PC <--> TiVo transfers, copied over the same video files, and everything now works perfectly fine. It appears that, for whatever reason, the video files were triggering the network connection between the PC --> TiVo to reset\stop as if transfer had finished. There was something about each video file that caused the transfer to consistently stop at exactly the same point during the transfer. For example The Dark Knight stopped at exactly 56 minutes (movie time, not transfer time) during each transfer attempted while The Happening stopped exactly at 11 minutes, another movie stopped at 3 minutes each time. When I copied over these movies to the new system, they all transfers PC --> TiVo works without any errors.

I am going to rebuild the previous system and see if the problem is specific to to combination of the hardware, OS, and drivers. It could be, for example, a bug in the Ethernet driver. Most likely there is something corrupt and rebuilding the entire system will correct the problem and it will remain a mystery as why the PC stopped transferring files to the TiVo short of 100%.
 
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andersonsidney

New member
dlflannery,dan203 & txporter.

Thanks for taking the time for the various suggestions. This problem has been resolved. It was one of type of problems that unless you had it yourself, or someone else had, it is would be hard to suggest a fix. In my case it has nothing to do with the video files directly (as I had wrongly concluded). What I did to fix my problem was setup another system to do the PC <--> TiVo transfers, copied over the same video files, and everything now works perfectly fine. It appears that, for whatever reason, the video files were triggering the network connection between the PC --> TiVo to reset\stop as if transfer had finished. There was something about each video file that caused the transfer to consistently stop at exactly the same point during the transfer. For example The Dark Knight stopped at exactly 56 minutes (movie time, not transfer time) during each transfer attempted while The Happening stopped exactly at 11 minutes, another movie stopped at 3 minutes each time. When I copied over these movies to the new system, they all transfers PC --> TiVo works without any errors.

I am going to rebuild the previous system and see if the problem is specific to to combination of the hardware, OS, and drivers. It could be, for example, a bug in the Ethernet driver. Most likely there is something corrupt and rebuilding the entire system will correct the problem and it will remain a mystery as why the PC stopped transferring files to the TiVo short of 100%.
Curious if you ever nailed this down with your rebuild?

I experience 0:00:00 movie times after transfer is complete of .mpg files and wanted to know if this improved?
 
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