522 Lockups


New Member
Original poster
May 7, 2004
Ive had my 522 for exactly 1 month 17 days today,anyways i ended up recording a program about 6-8 hours ago and by the time it was finished i noticed my dvr had in fact locked up and wont do anything wont change channels,wont let me access the menu,wont let me even enter the dvr area,wont give program info,dosent even show the display for channels or fast fowarding,rewind and so forth.
Ive tried the hard reset but when it gets the signal back it will only let me go into the program guide and select a channel(then locks on the channel i selected) or i can go into the menu but also locks up when i select dvr programs ,or if i press the dvr button that locks it up everytime(unless i press the view tv button about 5 times), i was starting to think the hard drive had gone out in it but it will still let me rewind live programs,download updates(unless it uses seperate memory from the hd?) Ive also tried resetting the factory defaults & updating but nothing has worked. anyone have this problem or know how to fix.
Basically if nothing more i want to get the programs off the hard drive as it was almost full i think maybe 30 mins left of the 100 hours (by the way that wouldnt be the problem would it? and if so how can i free up some space if i cant enter the hd i asked a dish rep but im sure most of em dont know any more than i do about it). Ive already called dish and they said they would send a new one out in 3-5 days but it will probably be more like 3-5 months as it took them 3 months just to come and install my first dish. Basically i see my chances are pretty slim with a capitol S but just hopin somebody knows whats goin on here and can help as i dont see a speedy resolve anywhere within the works
Oh yea i went into the diagnostics but the hard drive option is greyed out and wont let me select it is this normal?
Whew! There's a lot there. Well explained, tho. Except you didn't define 'hard reset'. There's a few different kinds. I'll assume you just held the power button down.

Try unplugging it for 60 seconds. More severe would be things like unhooking the satellite inputs, pulling the smartcard (if it's removable on the 522 - sorry, it's late), pulling the plug again and waiting for it to get mad at you. :) Then unplug it again, insert the card, plug the feeds back in (you DID remember which plugs, right?), and power it back up. All of this should at least make it do something different. :D

If all this brings it back to a reasonable state, you may need to have Dish reauthorize the receiver - it's trivial for them to do once you convince them it's needed.

If none of that works, punt. BTW, you probably WILL see a replacement receiver in just a few days - installer schedules have nothing to do with throwing a box on the truck from the depot.

P.S. Yeah - the hard disk menu option is normally grayed out.
Yea your right about the hard reset, i just held the button in for bout 15-20 secs, i did try unplugging it a couple times but again only for bout 20-30 secs so ill try that, actually the (well my) 522 dosent even have a smart card, so ill try unplugging the inputs and pluggin them back in. On a side note just about 5 mins ago all my local channels went out and i started to hold the button in but my finger slipped and just put it into sleep mode but before it went off i saw the channel come back for a split second so i hit the power button again and there it was, actually in that time period i actuall had my program header and the live tv icon, until i pressed the dvr button thinkin it was fixed DOH!!!

p.s the problem with the first receiver was a bunch of problems with the installer but mostly because they didnt have the 522 in stock or simply they just kept givin my reciever to other people who ordered the 522 that were closer to their headquarters than i was as its a state over but still only a 30 min or so drive anyway ill try and see if this works hopefully Thanx for ya time
There is a smartcard (or it's equivalent) inside the box - lots of new ones work that way. It's a pain as so many 'fixes' on other boxes involve pulling the card to more or less slap the thing upside the head so to speak.

Remember the order is important - unplug the power, unplug the inputs, power up the box. Then see if DVR works. If so, unplug the power, plug in the inputs, then power it up.
Gimpy said:
Basically if nothing more i want to get the programs off the hard drive as it was almost full i think maybe 30 mins left of the 100 hours (by the way that wouldn't be the problem would it? and if so how can i free up some space if i cant enter the HD i asked a dish rep but im sure most of em dont know any more than i do about it).

WOW! Aren't you dumping shows you want to save to your VCR, or burning them to DVDs onto your computer, or just plain doing the normal housekeeping required to properly use the 552 by deleting shows after watching them? You may want to connect your VCR between the 522 and your TV so you can record in real time, or after and promptly delete the event.

How can you "think" you have ANY HD space available when it shows "30 mins left of the 100 hours"? Indication of hours and minutes available left on the HD is only a loose approximation.

The always on Auto record feature has to set aside and eats up an enormous amount of HD space just to watch a program. The 522 User Guide repeatedly warns that different content events can use more HD space for same program time. User Guide states unit will not record and even malfunction if there is not sufficient room, and of course, protecting events and the unit software and Guide also take much HD space.

Would you expect a 100 GB HD on your computer filled with 99 GB of data to run well, or even at all?

I keep my 522 no more than 60% full by doing the necessary saving/deleting housekeeping the unit requires, and the four other 522 owners I know stay close to this 60% guideline.
Does it not auto house-clean old programs like the TIVO does? If not then this is one of the worst designed peices o crap on the planet! I thought that was the whole point of the "protect" option. I think you are way out of line in your thinking here. It would be very, very, stupid of them to not set aside a specific amount of space for operating system and swapfile and temp spaces seperate from the recording area. I have faith that your 99 out of 100 gig analogy here is way off base...
Ive tried everything short of opening the unit and pulling the smart card, I know what you saying ignition but before i recorded the program i had 1:23 min left it was like that for about a week or two and i figured 25 mins or so wouldnt hurt it as its been down to like 10 mins or so before still functioning correctly and im sure the time is a estimate as ive seen a recorded pogam displaying 0:00 when deleted give me 3 hours back.The rep i talked to yesterday told me the hd sets a amount of space for the buffers for rewinding/pausing i didnt ask how much space but like i said ive had it down to 10-20 mins before for a least a week still functioning properly
Im waiting on my Capture Card to get here i ordered i was trying to get every last use out of it before dumping guess i ended up screwing myself tho
ignition said:
Aren't you dumping shows you want to save to your VCR, or burning them to DVDs onto your computer, or just plain doing the normal housekeeping required to properly use the 552 by deleting shows after watching them?

I think your point is valid, but unfair. While I agree that the unit probably ran out of drive space and is now just sitting there confused, nowhere in the manual does it say that any "housekeeping" is required or that you can't/shouldn't use the 522 for archiving. If a person isn't a techie (most people aren't) they would have no idea that this sort of problem could arise. Think about the good old days of VCRs. When you ran out of space, the tape would just stop recording and rewind to the beginning for you. No problems. I suspect this poster's problem is a common one that should be addressed by Dish - not the end user. Their software should force the unit to reserve enough drive space so this sort of thing doesn't happen.

Gimpy, sorry but I think the only way you're going to get functionality back is to get a replacement unit and - unfortunately - lose all of your recordings. And you will get a replacement unit lightning fast - I got a replacement 322 via UPS in a day and a half! Unfortunately, they sent me a refurb (maybe they'll do the same to you) that I'm still debating on whether or not I want to keep. I see no point in inheriting someone else's problem unit. See this thread:

The 522 has a 120gb hard drive and assuming 100gb is roughly available for recordings, that leaves more than enough for the OS, swap file, temp space, etc, etc. In fact, someone on one of the Yahoo! Groups that "hack" Dish DVRs pulled the HD, stuck it in his Linux box, and looked at the partitions. It *is* partitioned 100/15/5 or similar, as I recall.

The "time remaining" is also just an estimate as already stated.

The 522 does do "auto-clean" by default. Unless you "protect" a show, I believe it works on the "first in, first out" principle. It will delete the oldest programs as needed to make room for new ones.

I've never heard a 60% rule before, but that's roughly what I do too. Of course, this weekend's free Starz is going to take me below that number !!
DISH has historically had a problem with hard drive capacity many consumers have had failures as they approach maximum recording capacity. A DVR is for temporary storage of programming if you want to archive get a DVD burner.
If filling the thing up with recordings kills it, then the programmers that made this DVR are retarded or still in high school....

I went with Dish because DTV is a very evil company...

So I get retarded/incompetent instead... 8(

Well, at least the DVR is included in the cost of service and I did not have to buy it. The TIVO is certainly worth the money, but the features of this system suck...

Still, it beats selling out to pure evil!
I got my new receiver yesterday, everything when smoother than i thought and everything is working again. Today i opened the old unit and hooked the hard drive up my pc and the hard drive has in fact died as it wouldn't detect in the bios and when i ran it in autodetect mode it gave a hard disk failure error on startup. Alas I've gotten a remanufactured unit this time though so im hoping i don't see the same problem or one of another nature unless its before my warranty runs out of course
Well, if the drive is dead, and you don't have to return it to Dish, the thing to do is to check with the drive manufacturer and see if it's under warranty. Unlikely due to things like model & S/N tracking, but possible - you might end up with an extra HDD for your PC.

I've never done it with a receiver, but had a great experience with a customer's Compaq laptop. Compaq wanted $480 to replace the 20GB 2.5" drive. I told her I could certainly do it for under $200. Got the machine, called the HDD manufacturer, and the replacement drive arrived in 3 days - no charge. Just goes to show you - ANYONE might try to rip you off. Moral: Never buy a Compaq or HP.

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