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Old 01-23-2011, 09:40 AM
steingra steingra is offline
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6+ years, my SageTV server died

Well it was bound to happen but the server hardware that was my SageTV server is pretty much dead. I am in the middle of trying to decide if I will try to resurrect the old hardware, or just move everything to a new server. Moving to a new server seems like it makes the most sense for a number of reasons. But I could also make a case for trying to find out what is wrong with the old hardware. Basically it just shuts down (even from in the BIOS). And sometimes it doesnt even turn on. I could simply try to use a different power supply and see if that helps. But like I said, I have a lot of reasons both for and against messing with the old hardware.

I have another computer I can use to build a new sagetv server. It would be 3 to 10 times faster than the old one I suppose. But I never really had complaints about the speed of the old server.

So my question is this, if I got the new server up and running, and moved the tv tuner (USB), IP address, server name, video card, USBUIRT to the new computer and got all the drivers installed for that hardware.

Could I just copy the directory that sagetv Server is located in, on the old server. And move it to the new server in the same directory? Or does sagetv server have hooks in the registry of the old Windows XP on the old server?

If sagetv server does use registry settings, then I suppose that means I cant just move the entire folder its in. Then I will have to look at reinstalling it.

The problem is, I dont know if I can find ALL my paperwork with all of my keycodes. Mind you, I have key codes for placeshifter, 4 MVP's, numerous clients, and the sagetv server itself. Sooooooooooo that could make a real problem for me if I cant find all the old codes.
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:59 AM
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stanger89 stanger89 is offline
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You're going to have to reinstall your keys no matter what if you move to a new machine.

FWIW, that's why I have all my purchase/registration emails sent to my gmail account, so they'll never be lost....

Personally, I'd take the wiz.bin with to the new server, but take the move as an opportunity to "clean out" the rest of it, start over with a new properties file and no jars/STVs installed.
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:51 AM
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davephan davephan is offline
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Wow! Six years is a long time. It could be a number of things. It could be your system board, memory, or power supply. It could be more than one thing too. Given the age of the system, it should be replaced with a new or newer computer. If you have the budget available, you should go for a fast quad-core. If the system is Windows XP, then now is also a good time to upgrade to Windows 7 maybe 64-bit. You can use the Windows 7 upgrade on new hardware with a clean install workaround that are posted on the web.

You could also install disk imaging software to make recoveries easier. If you had disk imaging software already with different hardware support, you could apply the image to the different hardware can recover. However, since the hardware and probably the operating system is so old, it makes more sense to rebuild it from scratch.

If you are using four MVP extenders, then you need the extra CPU processing power since the MVP units only playback mepg2 files. If you playback other formats, the CPU has to transcode the video files on the fly. If the CPU can't handle the load, then you will have stuttering on playback.

If you had the extra budget, you might also consider upgrading at least one of the MVP units for your 'main' TV. The audio and video quality are drastically better with the HD-200 and HD-300 units than the old MVP extenders. After you upgrade the MVP, you will wish that you had upgraded those years ago. The reliability to connect to the SageTV server is far better with the HD-200 and HD-300 extenders than the MVP extender. Plus using the HD-200 or HD-300 will reduce the CPU load on the SageTV computer.

Keeping serial and key numbers on Gmail is a very good idea. I keep copies of the registration on many hard drives, on-line backup, Yahoo E-mail, G-mail and a print-out kept in a safe. It is very annoying to try to recover those old keys, especially if the purchase was done through a web store that is now out of business, like PCAchemy.

You should not re-use the boot drive from the old computer to protect the data stored on it. Build-up the replacement system with a different hard drive. You might need some of the data stored on the old hard drive, such as the keys. You might be able to extract the data when the old boot / programs drive connected as a secondary hard drive to your new system.

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Old 01-23-2011, 12:43 PM
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Skybolt Skybolt is offline
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Originally Posted by davephan View Post
... If the system is Windows XP, then now is also a good time to upgrade to Windows 7 maybe 64-bit. ...
I had this happen to me last year and I saw this as an opertunity to upgade, so I did. I went with 2008 R2 64bit. Except for the 64bit part I am glad I did. However, because of the 64bit I am planning on going back to 2003 R2 32bit.

Good luck with what ever you decide on steingra.

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Old 01-23-2011, 12:49 PM
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PiX64 PiX64 is offline
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For what its worth, I had the same issue happen about 2 years ago. The sytmptoms were exactly as you described. I replaced the PSU and presto, back up and running in a few minutes.

In my opinion if you have no complaints about your current hardware, speed, playback, etc. i would drop 30 bucks or whatever on a decent power supply and see if that does the trick. If not you can always return it and build a new server anyways :-)

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Old 01-23-2011, 01:24 PM
Mike Mike is offline
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I'd bet on the power supply too. I keep a spare one around.

Sage has records of the purchases and I think they will forward keys to you.

I just made a move and we covered some of the issues here.

Good Luck,
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Old 01-23-2011, 03:40 PM
steingra steingra is offline
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I have been thinking about it too, and it does feel like it might be the power supply. I have built my own computers and servers for myself and others for a long time. So I am sure I can find out why its broken. But I just dont know if it is worth it or not (mainly because how old themotherboard is. The hard drive is newer because I clone them from time to time onto a new drive).

In some ways most definately worth it to get it working again, and just go about things the way they were. Then I can plan on an orderly upgrade.

Also I had two drives in a RAID configuration in the current dead system. That had some shows and data on them. So I am not sure how I will deal with that situation, if the computer actually is dead. I have never needed to try to recover data from a raid array before. Its software raid too, not a hardware riad card (the old system is an Asus motherboard).

I already have some hardware that I can use for an upgrade. I got the OS installed and upto SP3, and the lastest drivers are on it. But it is just a basic OS and nothing more. I am very partial to using XP Pro. So I want to stick with it and I have licenses for it.

So next I need to figure out if I should just install new copy of sagetv (6.xx) on the new server, and then try to find all my licenses

EDIT: Well after thinking it over some more, I replaced the power supply, and so far it hasnt turned off. So now I am copying all the files from the RAIDED drives to a larger 1 TB drive. If it copies all those files (500GB's) over to the USB drive enclosure that has my 1TB drive it, without any errors I am going to start to really believe it was in fact the power supply. I wish there was an easy way to move the entire sagetv server to a new computer.

DOES SAGETV SERVER save anything in the registry of the computer its installed on? If not, then it seems to me it would be just a matter of copying all the files from the C:\Program Files\SageTV (or whatever its called I dont remember off the top of my head) to the same directory on the new server. As long as all the same hardware was on the new should work. Of course to further complicate this, I dont want to reuse the old video card. So I am really in a pickle as what to do. I have lots of options and all of them seem like they are going to be painful

Another example is because I would also like to upgrade to version 7.0.

heck maybe what I should do, is just buy another license for SageTV server, and then just start building up the new server and leave the old one alone to work as long as it can. That way I can keep using my old sagetv server and also start working on the new one...hmmmmm I know that sounds decadent right?I mean all my clients can still work against the old sagetv server. And as time allows and as the old server stays alive, it gives me some breathing room.

Or I can just pull the plug on the old one, and deal with moving all the hardware (like my external USB PVR tuner, and USB 1TB hard drives, and USBUIRT...etc to the new one)

I could go on and on and on......
ARHGHGHGHGHGH too many choices. Thats what I get for being a geek.

Last edited by steingra; 01-23-2011 at 07:27 PM.
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:35 PM
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davephan davephan is offline
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Here's a way you can move your existing operating system and programs drive to a new computer using different hardware.

Buy and install Acronis True Image Home 2011 on your old computer.

Next, buy and install Acronis True Image Home 2011 Plus Pack on your old computer.

Take an image of your old computer and store the image on another hard drive. Replace your hardware with newer hardware. Apply the image of the older computer to the newer hardware. You will then have your old operating system and program files working on the newer dissimilar hardware.

The cost of the two products is not wasted since the Acronis disk imaging product will allow you to protect your new replacement computer. When you need to replace your computer again, use the same software to move your operating system / programs drive to the next computer.

Eventually, you will probably have to rebuild from scratch. Windows XP has about two years left for support by Microsoft.

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Old 01-23-2011, 10:52 PM
steingra steingra is offline
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Yeah, I have used acronis before. I also have 3 other cloning programs that I use, depending on the situation. I do already have a hard drive cloned, with everything from the old/current sagetv server.

I thought about sticking it in the new server. But then it would have drivers and software for the old system, and then I would have to install all the drivers for the new hardware (I do have those drivers for the new system because I just used them to install onto the new sagetv computer last night) and I know they worked. I did a clean install from Windows XP pro.

So it sounds like you are talking about one of the many options I have been thinking about trying. The reason I like the idea of just sticking the cloned drive into the new system is it means that sagetv is already installed.

But the video card is different in the new system, in fact right now, it just has the built in Intel video chipset and has 128MB of ram allocated to it. I never actually watch anything on the sagetv server. Normally its a headless server. So I dont care about that issue very much. But I wonder how sagetv will feel about it?????

You have peaked my interest in this option again. I might just try it for the heck of it, and see how it works. I mean it would be working from a cloned drive anyway, so its not like its going to hurt anything.

I guess the thing that just eats at me a little bit, is how stable or not this configuration would be.

I cant say I have tried to do this too many times with Windows XP. Where I yank a hard drive out, and stick it in a totally different computer. If I was lucky (after installing all the correct drivers) it would just work.

Thanks for the input.
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Old 01-23-2011, 11:48 PM
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GKusnick GKusnick is offline
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Originally Posted by steingra View Post
As long as all the same hardware was on the new should work.
Probably not. Even with the same capture devices, a new installation of Windows will assign them new device IDs that won't match up with what's in You should basically never copy from one installation to another, except in the specific case of restoring a complete Sage installation to the same directory on the same hardware.
-- Greg
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