Usage after demise: Hacking receiver's and DVR's firmware for something else? (2 Viewers)

Amiga

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 21, 2007
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I'm accepting Orby TV's fate that it is not long for this world. I have unactivated / virgin Orby TV receivers and DVRs purchased during Best Buy sales. Is there an archive of firmware updates? Hoping someone can figure out a use for these puppies similiar to how the Sony Dash and Chumbys are kept alive with a hacked firmware - Chumby .
 

TV Junkie

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Feb 20, 2021
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I'm accepting Orby TV's fate that it is not long for this world. I have unactivated / virgin Orby TV receivers and DVRs purchased during Best Buy sales. Is there an archive of firmware updates? Hoping someone can figure out a use for these puppies similiar to how the Sony Dash and Chumbys are kept alive with a hacked firmware - Chumby .
Probably have to wait for actual demise.

I believe there is no hack talk here. At all.

But i have thought the same thing. i believe Titanium posted most receivers are protected from cross loading firmwares. Doesn't mean it's impossible but may be uphill effort.
 

Amiga

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 21, 2007
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Eventually altering the firmware doesn't equate to theft of services, which probably won't exist soon enough. I remember the end times of Voom. I'm putting this out there for people to ponder while Orby TV is on life support. It would be great if we could use the receivers as a nice OTA DVR with the satellite aspects stripped out. I know the Orby TV hardware is Korean, but curious what outfit developed the software. As I previously stated, I have an abandoned Sony Dash that is still alive (with basic functionality) through the efforts of the original Chumby developers.
 
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FTA4PA

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Nov 13, 2013
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Probably have to wait for actual demise.

I believe there is no hack talk here. At all.

But i have thought the same thing. i believe Titanium posted most receivers are protected from cross loading firmwares. Doesn't mean it's impossible but may be uphill effort.
Correct, hack talk for theft of service is absolutely not permitted here. If someone figured out a way to convert the box for ONLY free to air and ota then I don't think there would be an issue talking about it. In any case that firmware would need to offered elsewhere because firmware is no longer hosted here. Too many implications for the site if someone slips something by that promoted TOS.
 
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TV Junkie

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IMO if orbytv is going away they should, as a thanks for the support, do the following:

OPEN ALL channels NOW for ALL customers. (free hbo for 2 more days)

RELEASE for public download an open writable firmware. (FTA conversion)

STATE publicly what is transpiring.

Send everybody 100 points in Betty Crocker box tops.
 

FTA4PA

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Nov 13, 2013
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Central Pennsylvania
IMO if orbytv is going away they should, as a thanks for the support, do the following:

OPEN ALL channels NOW for ALL customers. (free hbo for 2 more days)

RELEASE for public download an open writable firmware. (FTA conversion)

STATE publicly what is transpiring.

Send everybody 100 points in Betty Crocker box tops.
Well, you might get the Betty Crocker box tops but I wouldn't count on the rest. :rolleyes
 

TV Junkie

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Feb 20, 2021
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Usage after demise: Hacking receiver's and DVR's firmware for something else?​

Hey friend as an after thought, you know what we could do?

Remember that scene from "Office Space"...?

effthatmachine.gif
 

Mr. Rainbow

Member
Jul 22, 2015
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Boise, ID
I actually looked into their receivers having an ethernet port and do have some information on potentially altering the firmware to be fta. On the old firmware versions they left the ethernet port with root ssh access wide open. I was able to dump the whole firmware to a flash drive, but it would be trivial to write it to another receiver to downgrade it. One really interesting thing is that on startup a script runs and starts something called alti captor aka the alticast made program that is what you see right after the red green flashing on the front of the box. The script they put in there on boot checks to see if a .sh file exists on a flash drive, and it runs whatever you put in it, even on the latest firmware that disabled the ethernet port. How they disabled the ethernet port was they removed the drop bear instance they were starting in the script they had on boot. They also added a line that turns off the interface eth0. I was able to get it to run my script on my flash drive and turn the ethernet port back on with the latest firmware, so that would probably be a start. What's really interesting is they have various references to other companies software and logos and even some of those resources exist on the device. One of them was a generic korean fta box, so I believe the box has most of what it needs to be an fta box already. For anyone that's interested, definitely check out a company called alticast as they made the software for orby, and kaon media made the box. It runs on a simple linux image that the alticast java app runs on top of, and their appears to be some services in the background for recording, ota/ sat demod etc. It's all quite interesting as alticast makes a lot of TV provider's software.
 

TV Junkie

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Feb 20, 2021
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I actually looked into their receivers having an ethernet port and do have some information on potentially altering the firmware to be fta. On the old firmware versions they left the ethernet port with root ssh access wide open. I was able to dump the whole firmware to a flash drive, but it would be trivial to write it to another receiver to downgrade it. One really interesting thing is that on startup a script runs and starts something called alti captor aka the alticast made program that is what you see right after the red green flashing on the front of the box. The script they put in there on boot checks to see if a .sh file exists on a flash drive, and it runs whatever you put in it, even on the latest firmware that disabled the ethernet port. How they disabled the ethernet port was they removed the drop bear instance they were starting in the script they had on boot. They also added a line that turns off the interface eth0. I was able to get it to run my script on my flash drive and turn the ethernet port back on with the latest firmware, so that would probably be a start. What's really interesting is they have various references to other companies software and logos and even some of those resources exist on the device. One of them was a generic korean fta box, so I believe the box has most of what it needs to be an fta box already. For anyone that's interested, definitely check out a company called alticast as they made the software for orby, and kaon media made the box. It runs on a simple linux image that the alticast java app runs on top of, and their appears to be some services in the background for recording, ota/ sat demod etc. It's all quite interesting as alticast makes a lot of TV provider's software.
Quoted for preservation. Great info friend!! :drunk
 
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Radioguy41

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Aug 7, 2008
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I'm accepting Orby TV's fate that it is not long for this world. I have unactivated / virgin Orby TV receivers and DVRs purchased during Best Buy sales. Is there an archive of firmware updates? Hoping someone can figure out a use for these puppies similiar to how the Sony Dash and Chumbys are kept alive with a hacked firmware - Chumby .
So you deactivated perfectly good receivers based on an assumption based on a rumor while the service is still live and viable? That's like not going to your favorite restaurant because you think they might close. How does that make sense?
 

solarvic

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Oct 17, 2019
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Hadley, pa.
My orby reciever has been unplugged for over 3 months since I took my dish down. Pluged it in and it downloaded the new antenna location channels. So I could just use it as an ota receiver. I was wondering if orby can disable the ota receiver if the sat antenna was connected. If orby goes away I probably will not aim the dish to orby satelite.
 

Tvland1

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Mar 3, 2009
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ohio
My orby reciever has been unplugged for over 3 months since I took my dish down. Pluged it in and it downloaded the new antenna location channels. So I could just use it as an ota receiver. I was wondering if orby can disable the ota receiver if the sat antenna was connected. If orby goes away I probably will not aim the dish to orby satelite.
Nobody can really say for sure what they can do with the satellite input receiving signal..yrs ago commands were sent to do more than people thought...I would say you'll be fine.I can't see them caring about the OTA.. Now if you do have a DVR you might want to consider unhooking the sat input to prevent the receiver from getting a command to disable the DVR so you can still use the DVR on OTA..I unhooked mine
 
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navychop

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Weren’t Voom receivers in demand after their demise as good OTA receivers?
 

Amiga

Thread Starter
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Jan 21, 2007
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So you deactivated perfectly good receivers based on an assumption based on a rumor while the service is still live and viable? How does that make sense?
Virgin means I've got four unactivated (never seen a sat signal) DVRs and two receivers in my arsenal. I hoard electronics when they're on sale for others in my life.

Beyond my Sony Dash / Chumby resurrection, I use the third-party naf firmware to keep my OBi100 VoIP ATA alive after Obihai started playing games with firmware updates - Third-party firmware for OBi ATAs .

Stutech
I could donate a unit to the cause that probably still has the first gen firmware (open Ethernet).
 
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Mister B

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I would be interested in a DVR that has been activated if it continued to operate as an OTA DVR without any satellite connection. I assume it would just use PSIP guide and time data.
 

Mister B

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Jun 3, 2008
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For those members who have the Orby DVR, does your OTA DVR function still work? I know they charged a monthly fee for OTA only recording but the decent thing to do would have been to at least leave that functioning. It would be useful if we had information on OTA DVR usage comparing members who were connected to satellite and still had active service until last night compared to those who let their service end previously.
When this section of the forum began it was widely accepted that the OTA guide data was PSIP only but at some point the below quoted representative of the company posted that they sent down data for most channels over the satellite. So, the question of guide data and correct time needs to be addressed.
If this DVR indeed will operate as an OTA DVR with at least PSIP data I can see a pretty good market for those units. It certainly would beat the no-name "converter boxes" at the big box stores that are only one tuner, need an external hard drive and have generally very low customer ratings.
Most local channels will have EPG data provided by our satellite EPG feed. If we don't have the data then the PSIP data for the station will be used instead.
 

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