: New Expander required for Gateway's next Code release
2012-05-14, 08:09 PM
I just received a phone call from Shaw informing me that the next firmware to be sent out will not be compatible with the current models of Expander and they want to give me a new one that will work. The problem is that recordings cannot be made on the current expanders once the next firmware is sent to the Gateways. Shaw is providing the expander 'free of charge' and I can still keep my original one. They are 'calling everyone with a Gateway'.
I find this very interesting. Has anyone else received a similar call?
2012-05-14, 08:20 PM
I hope I get a call. I don't have an expander and wouldn't mind a free one. ;)
Interesting if they are changing expander types. I wonder if they will go to usb drives. A Shaw repair tech said he wished they would switch to usb since he had seen so many problems with the esata cables. He didn't say they were switching just that he wished they would.
2012-05-14, 08:48 PM
Is it the WD or Seagate expander, or both, which won't work?
I'll be very impressed if they hand out a free drive to everyone with a Gateway and an expander purchased from Shaw. I bought a WD one from Future Shop a year or so ago when they had them on sale for $50. If I end up with two drives that's only $25/TB!
2012-05-14, 09:31 PM
In addition to receiving replacement Expanders, I hope that we will also get sufficient notice before that firmware update to allow us to watch our recorded programs before they suddenly disappear!
Even if they won't disappear and can still be watched on Gateways with the new firmware, and that might be a possibility if I read Jetranger's post correctly, and haven't read too much into it, we won't be able to watch our already-recorded programs on the old Expander and record new ones on the new Expander at the same time. We would have to swap Expanders, if that will even work.
I just checked the Shaw web pages and the current Expanders are not currently listed as compatible (http://www.shaw.ca/Television/Equipment/PVR-Expander/) with the Gateway and there is no listing for Expanders that are compatible with the Gateway (http://www.shaw.ca/Gateway/Hardware/).
When will the new firmware be released? Will we still be limited to one Expander? Will one with more than 1TB be available? What will this mean for those who have used their own external drives, as described in Shaw Gateway: Adding External Drives (http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=142528)?
Questions, questions, questions, always more questions!
2012-05-14, 10:01 PM
What will this mean for those who have used their own external drives, as described in Shaw Gateway: Adding External Drives (http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=142528)?
Questions, questions, questions, always more questions!
My question as well.
I'm going to be rather annoyed if I lose what I have currently recorded. (More so if say, I should lose functionality all together like with my old Pace.:()
I can not afford to spend $100, $112 with tax for an Expander. My home brew device has worked flawlessly since day one and I hope it continues to after the update. It's also a 1.5TB solution rather than 1TB for a total of 2TB.
2012-05-14, 11:06 PM
We have always been able to switch between 6 different 1TB expanders, at least since they enabled the expander code. The limitation being that only one can be connected at a time. Content on the 'old' drives is supposed to still be available to be watched. I agree that it will be a pain to have to manually switch between the drives in order to watch older content but that should only last for the time needed to watch the content and then it will be gone, at least for me.
I was told they are 'Iomega' and some other name, sorry I can't remember. Apparently 'both' of the previous models won't be able to be recorded on once the next code is pushed out. That's what the agent who called me said.
I don't know how they will interface but I will go and pick one up tomorrow and report more when I get it home.
2012-05-14, 11:23 PM
After thinking about this some more, I'm starting to think that changing the interface is more likely than I originally thought. If the new drives are still esata based, why in the world would they stop supporting something that is already working and incurring the hardware upgrade costs in the process? I would think they could make the code detect the esata drive connected and use the old or new drivers as needed if they added a different esata drive. I'm now even more curious about what they bring out. I would hope that this will also correspond with the release of larger expanders from official Shaw retailers.
2012-05-15, 10:05 AM
Is there any way to tell what's been recorded on the internal and the external drives? I'm about 42% full with the expander connected, so if most of the material is on the internal drive, then I'd watch/delete the stuff on the Expander first, then make a permanent switch to the new drive (they haven't called me yet).
2012-05-15, 11:30 AM
Hmm... I had a chat with the Shaw chat and this is what she said:
"Seagate expanders are the one's we will replace. Iomega and Western Digital are still okay and will work with the Gateway after the firmware update."
So that's a different story from what Jetranger was told. I have an Iomega drive.
2012-05-15, 03:16 PM
I went and picked up the new Expander today and it is an 'iomega' MDHD-DVR 1TB drive. It turns out it is just the Seagate drives that will not be compatible and it just so happens I have that one connected to my Gateway so they gave me a new iomega one. I could have just swapped one of my two WD Expanders for the Seagate but why would I turn down a 'free' Terrabyte of storage?
I do find it odd that Shaw can tell what kind of Expander I have connected to my Gateway unless this was something that was reported and recorded at the time of install. I had the Expander prior to the Gateway purchase and the installing Techs made sure it was 'added' to the Gateway when they did my install. Maybe that's how Shaw knows which brand it is. It's even more strange that they wouldn't know I have the other two and just suggest I swap them around. I suppose that could mean loss of recordings but one of my other two Expanders is empty and unused at this time.
The most strange part of this was when the agent who called me said that 'all' previous Expanders would be affected. It's kind of sad that the people Shaw tasked with 'correcting' this issue weren't even given all the info they needed to answer the inevitable questions. I really feel for those poor employees. They must feel like mushrooms.
2012-05-15, 03:57 PM
Phew, glad it's just the Seagate ones that need swapping; I don't want the hassle of having two drives on the go.
2012-05-16, 10:00 AM
Any idea on when we should expect the call?
I have a tech set to come on thursday so i'm thinking it might be easier to just have him come with the new expander since i'll have to swap it out anyways but havn't heard nothing from shaw about any of this.
I just love how we have to come here to find out stuff yet shaw never contacts me about any of the stuff i've found out on here.
Plus contacting a rep is a crap shoot, one will say one thing the other will say the first was wrong, the 3rd says they both are and then get a new story when you come here. So confusing and fustrating.
2012-05-16, 01:20 PM
I agree it is really frustrating. I worked at Shaw for 6 years as Technical support and the problem is internal communication. They have no proper system for keeping everyone on the same page.
Chances are you have a 50/50(maybe worse) shot of the rep knowing that the Expander needs to be replaced. Most likely they told a specific group of staff who to contact about the replacement and didn't bother to tell anyone else. Hopefully they contact you soon.
2012-05-16, 05:58 PM
In the testing prior to upgrading customers, an issue was found with a very small number of expanders/external drives. These drives have internal components from Seagate, and can cause an issue with recording to the external HDD after the upgrade. These may or may not have been sold under the Shaw label (the same models are generally available from the manufacturer). The drives in question have been shown to work reliably after being reformatted, but this does cause a total loss of recorded content, and is still being tested to ensure future reliability.
As a result, we’ve chosen to give a second Expander free of charge to affected customers, to ensure no future recordings are missed, while still giving ample opportunity to watch previously captured recordings. The second Expander may be iomega, Western Digital or Seagate, depending on what stock is available. These units come with the same 3 year warranty as always – 3 times the manufacturer’s warranty. All these customers will be contacted by the end of this week.
Understandably, there's been some confusion in messaging to customers, and we're working to rectify this. As with any communication, personal interpretation does play a part, and this can result in slightly different messaging from different people.
Apologies for any confusion this has caused and please let me know if you have any further questions.
2012-05-16, 08:08 PM
How hard would it be to have a printed sheet done up for the reps who are tasked with making the calls? I'm sure this would be greatly appreciated by all concerned and any questions that aren't thought of can be answered and added to the sheet as they come up. A well thought out document would probably take only an hour to come up with and get approved. Is there maybe an opening in your 'not so common sense' department that I might be able to apply for?:D
2012-05-16, 08:42 PM
@Jetranger - The folks making the outbound calls will definitely capture any questions/concerns (electronically might I add) and escalate them to the proper channels.
PS - Follow @ShawCareers on Twitter for job updates - might be waiting awhile on that posting though ;)
2012-05-17, 05:28 PM
So a SHAW tech just replaced my external Seagate drive that I had hooked up to my Gateway. On the phone, the Shaw rep had told me they were going to go to Western Digital since the Seagates were going to cause a problem once the update came for the Gateway.
However, it turns out that the Shaw tech gave me an identical drive to swap out my old one with. He claimed that if you formatted the old drive it would most likely work fine with the new update.
He said it affects a very limited number of their customers and that they are just replacing the drives to be nice.
Of course the new drive has a different serial number system on it...but other than that its identical in every way. Weird....
2012-05-17, 07:24 PM
Did he 'replace' your drive and take your original one or did he just deliver you a replacement drive and leave you with your original as well?
2012-05-19, 11:49 AM
a shaw rep came and gave me a new iomega expander to attach to my gateway. He did not want to take the seagate expander with him. He showed me the work order that said leave existing expander with customer.
2012-05-19, 09:14 PM
how do i know which one i have?