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Hi everyone,

Having read of other people's experiences getting a CableCARD device up and running with Cogeco I decided to give it a shot - and it worked! My experience was similar to others in that it was a bit hit-and-miss, so I've put together a few thoughts for those who may also wish to try this. Keep in mind your mileage may vary!

Hardware:
Windows 7 PC
Ceton InfiniTV 4 USB
Motorola Multistream CableCARD

I ordered two cards on the off chance one was bad. Didn't have to use it so maybe I'll go eight tuners at some point! :)


A lot of what I'm writing here may be redundant / well known, but for the sake of completeness…


Hardware Setup:

Is pretty straight forward...

Write down the SN and UA numbers on the back of your CableCARD. Be very careful not to typo or screw up a digit otherwise nothing is going to work. (You can get this number out of the Ceton diagnostic tool, in that app the UA is the "CableCARD ID")

Hook it all up so the CableCARD is installed and the cable connected to the Ceton box, box into computer.

Download the latest Ceton drivers and software and install as instructed in the box.

Don't run Windows Media Center yet!

Fire up the Ceton Diagnostic tool. Verify you're up to date then click the CableCARD tab.

The first three items should have a green check. If OOB isn't checked yet wait a few minutes. You should see it switch over to checked. Receiving OOB Messages should go green shortly there after.

You can fire up WMC and run through the setup. It should be able to identify Cogeco as the provider but won't be able to give you a contact number to setup your CableCARD (no surprise there).

Good, you should be ready to activate with Cogeco.



Working with Cogeco:

Please remember this isn't officially supported and the staff *do not* have to help you on this. Be polite even if you get some push-back. Most of the staff are great....

- Call during the day: when I first tried I called in the evening, it didn't go very well. In part my own fault for confusing the issue by mentioning CableCARD. Long story short I think the night staff are much less willing to go off-script than the day staff. The service rep also refused to let me speak to anyone else but said they'd have a manager call me back within 48hrs. Surprise surprise, I never did get that call.

- Don't mention CableCARD's or USB tuners. It's not that we want to mislead Cogeco, it's that the card *is* activate-able as a Motorola DCT2000. As such it seems more straight forward to try getting it running than if you get into the specifics of your rig - which most of the staff have probably never heard of. You don't want to waste their time and Cogeco is known for activating non-Cogeco branded STB's, so I suggest that route.

- Be prepared, your serial numbers are NOT going to match any in their system. That shouldn't be a surprise since you're not using one of their receivers. Odds are though is your SN and UA don't even start like ones they are expecting. Some rep's will be willing to "try it anyway" some won't. This is where the day staff seem to be more willing.


Getting Activated:

Before calling launch the Ceton Diagnostic tool. This will give you important information on where things are at.

With the above in mind give Cogeco a call and ask to speak to activations. Tell them you have a receiver you'd like to activate. They will ask for the SN and UA (they may also ask for a model, remember Motorola DCT2000).

At this point they will likely ask you to re-read the numbers as they don't match what they expected. If they haven't before they'll certainly ask about the receiver now and if you purchased it in store, etc. Obviously you didn't buy this from a Cogeco dealer. Explain that the person you bought it from has indicated it's compatible with Cogeco's system, etc.

The person you are speaking with may or may not be willing to proceed. Again please be polite even if they don't want to help you, this isn't an officially supported configuration. Try to convince them to just give it a go, but if they will not just thank them for their time and let it go. Try again tomorrow with someone else.

Assuming they are willing to help they may put you on hold to check with others or their tech line about the device. Hopefully they come back and say they're going to give it a try.


Differences from normal activation:

Great, so the representative is going to try authorizing your system! This is where things get a bit different...

- Your CableCARD setup is one-way. Cogeco can send it messages but it cannot send them back. They won't be expecting that.

- By saying your device is a Motorola DCT2000 you've indicated it's a SDTV receiver, not an HD one. Odds are your HD channels won't be activated. More on that later.


Normally when the activation signal is sent your STB box will send a message back to Cogeco then shut down. The rep may wonder about not getting that confirmation message back. Your Ceton box isn't going to do anything visible. They may ask if it has shut off, go along with this as you will get an indication if things are working shortly via the Diagnostic Tool.

Keep an eye on the Ceton Diagnostic tool. I believe you should see the OOB items turn off then come back on again - I don't recall, it's been a few weeks… The critical thing is that within a few minutes you want to see #7, CableCARD has Headend Connection, light up. The Channel List check mark should also pop up.

Note: on mine #6 in the diagnostic tool does not go green. It remains in the "CableCARD has not received Validation signal…". Weeks later this hasn't been an issue. Everything works fine.


Once you see those two go green (#7, #8) your STB has "rebooted" as far as the normal activation procedure. At this point you should be able to tune the regular channels. Note: Cogeco advises you to leave the box alone for 30 minutes or so while the normal activation procedure finishes. While I was able to see channels I did leave it alone after checking a few in case I botched something up. This may or may not be necessary with the Ceton, but why cause potential issues?


Getting HD Working

Odds are that once you're up and running you cannot see HD channels. The problem is that the DCT2000 is an SD receiver, so they likely will not have activated the HD channels.

Give them a call back (assuming you hung up earlier) and tell them you recently activated a receiver. They should be able to pull it up fairly quickly. Tell them you aren't receiving the HD channels. They'll note the DCT2000 and say it can't do HD, mention it has an HDMI connector and is supposed to do HD. It must not be an DCT2000! (mention your other channels are working though).

They will probably send down the activation signal. This may not work!

In my case when they tried to enable the HD channels the update was ignored. They tried twice, no good. So I asked them to resend the original activation signal, but this time with the HD channels enabled before doing so. This successfully activated the HD channels. Again they'll likely recommend you leaving it be once you can see an HD channel. Not a bad idea. I verified 710 and 711 before hanging up.


What Works, What Doesn't

(this is all CC related, not Ceton box specific)

Standard SD and HD channels work fine. Pay channels like TMNHD, MXSHD, etc work fine. I haven't tried some of the premium HD channels like Oasis.

Some of the premium channels in the later 200 region don't work. They appear in the channel guide but the tuner sees nothing on that channel. I suspect these are SDV channels, which require the two-way communication.

On-Demand doesn't work as expected as this is definitely SDV and requires two-way communication.


--


A few weeks in now and all is working great. Very happy with the setup!


Lastly, if anyone from Cogeco is reading this: a BIG THANK YOU for being supportive and going a head with the activation even though the serials were odd. It's greatly appreciated.
 

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Nice Work!

Nice work getting this going. I got myself a ceton card and a couple cablecards and havent been able to get it going yet.

I called cogeco to activate and with quite a bit of difficulty got them to add it to their system.

I did notice as well that in the diagnostics I have #6 not green like the others; it says "Cablecard has not received a validation signal. Please ask your cable company to send a ccv signal to your cablecard."

I only have a few channels working at the moment - perhaps it wasn't activated properly by cogeco. I think my signal strength may be too weak as well.

I have to get some time to troubleshoot further.

Thanks for the info about the HD - that's next on the list if I can get the rest working!
 

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Hey guys I know this thread is a couple years old. Iam wondering if you are still using the cablecard and receiving hd programming? If so Iam wondering when activating why not just tell the csr that you have a. Dcx3400-m or any hd receiver that has a cablecard? Why tell them you have a non hd box? Or was the dcx3400 not out back then? Also has any problems come up since then. Thanks for any info you can provide.
 

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