External hard drive for dish hopper? (4 Viewers)


SatelliteGuys Pro
Pub Member / Supporter
Jan 13, 2004
Yea sorry...tried to attach pics. It is the WD Blue 4TB with an Orico enclosure the enclosure is powered. When I turn it on, the error message is the first thing I get.
I would have thought the WD Blue 4TB with the Orico powered enclosure would work as long as it is attached to any Hopper according to the Dish specifications Howard Simmons linked to in post #3 of this thread. Are you sure you the bare drive is installed properly in the enclosure and do you have this attached to a Hopper series receiver from Dish? Do you have the enclosure plugged into an electric outlet?
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A mighty and noble race originating on Altair IV.
Pub Member / Supporter
Jan 4, 2007
Fairfax, VA
Yea sorry...tried to attach pics. It is the WD Blue 4TB with an Orico enclosure the enclosure is powered. When I turn it on, the error message is the first thing I get.
If this is your enclosure, then I agree; this should work.

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I recommend attaching the enclosure+drive to your computer and see what your computer says. If it pops up on your computer and looks fine, try to figure out how the disk is formatted. Maybe it came formatted exFAT or something appropriate for a MAC.


Member of the Month - July 2014!
Pub Member / Supporter
Lifetime Supporter
Jul 20, 2005
Northern VA
And if that fails, call Dish. They may need to “hit” it. Used to be they charged a fee to turn on the feature.
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SatelliteGuys Pro
Pub Member / Supporter
Jul 11, 2009
Columbus, Ohio
I have the an Orico enclosure. What happens then you plug it into a PC or MAC. Does it see it and format it? If it does, go ahead and format it. Once formatted then plug it into the H3 and the H3 will ask to reformat it to it's own format.

If the PC or MAC does not see it then you might have a bad drive, bad enclosure or the drive isn't seated all the way in.
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Active SatelliteGuys Member
Jan 15, 2021
I have had an external HD attached to my Hopper with Sling for quite a few years now. I'm currently using a WD black label 2GB SATA in an external powered cradle. From discussions I have seen, the powered cradle is essential to trouble-free install and operation. There may be some drives that will work powered off the native USB, but it looks to be hit or miss (with the "misses" predominating...) I will also tell you from experience that using the external HD with the Hopper can be frustrating. Especially when the external drive dies after spending time and effort moving a ton of movies to it... I'd be very interested to hear from anyone who has successfully cloned their external drive, then been able to swap drives. SInce I believe the format is supposed to be Linux-compatible (ext3?) it should be possible to use any true disk imaging program on a PC to do this, but I have not yet taken the risk of trying this. I have enough issues with the Hopper periodically "losing" the attached drive (at least once a week), and requiring a system reboot to regain it. Another frustration is the lack of folder filing capability on the external drive. I just went through the exercise of selectively purging movies from that drive to regain space. Deletion of a movie required the consensus of two of us here. If I could have classified external HD items in folders, that would have been a piece of cake: move the deletion candidates into a folder; allow 2nd reviewer to move items to be retained out of that folder; delete folder contents when done. That actually was the procedure, except that every movie to be considered for deletion had to first be physically copied from the external to the internal drive, then the review took place, then retained movies had to be copied back to the external drive. This entailed hours and hours of transfers, imo for no good reason beyond Dish never reviewing the usability of its software...

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