What should I do with an old TiVo?
June 23, 2006 10:24 AM   Subscribe

What should I do with an old TiVo unit?

I have an early series 2 TiVo box, remote, & all cords. I don't use it anymore. What should I do with it?

I seem to recall programming it with some personal information, so I don't really want to throw it away or give it away to some random person. For this reason, and because of the hassle, I also don't want to sell it.

Plus, would trashing it be environmentally unfriendly? Is there some safe way of "recycling" it?
posted by peep to Technology (9 answers total)
sell it on eBay?
posted by k8t at 10:25 AM on June 23, 2006

Rip that sucker open and get the hard drive?
posted by ImJustRick at 10:27 AM on June 23, 2006

The personal information it has on you can be easily removed from the menus. Just do a "clear everything" reset from one of the Settings menus.

Once you've done that, give it to a friend?
posted by Laen at 10:37 AM on June 23, 2006

give it to a friend/ a family member/ a nursing home?
I have a series 1 Tivo and don't recall programming the box itself with anything particularly personal -- the most important thing is the serial #, which is what your billing account is tied to. You could always call Tivo and ask what personal info might be stored on the machine.
If you're very adventurous, you could replace the hard drive with a new one and then reinstall it with a blank Tivo image (we've done with with our series 1 - not sure how well it works for series 2) and then sell on e-bay or the like.
posted by j at 10:41 AM on June 23, 2006

I just swiped the hard disk out of my and stuck it in the closet in case I ever decide to use it again.
posted by jtfowl0 at 10:46 AM on June 23, 2006

Best answer: Electronics Recycling Centers near Portland, Oregon. Keep the hard drive if you're concerned about your personal info, or expose it to a magnet before you drop it off.
posted by junkbox at 11:03 AM on June 23, 2006

Oh! You're in PDX? I'll help you wipe it and take it off your hands for you :)
posted by j at 11:05 AM on June 23, 2006

Best answer: Exposing the HD to a magnet won't wipe it. You need a VERY strong field to get "through" the HD case and actually affect the platters. The magnetic field in the platters are normally modified by a r/w head positioned mere micrometers from its surface. High school physics and how the strength of a magnetic field drops off with distance should help, here.

As for wiping the unit, why not ask Tivo, themselves? They'd be able to tell you how to clear any personally-identifiable information from your Series 2, and may even let you know venues where you can unload it. If you're interested in upgrading, they may even have a trade-in program.
posted by catkins at 11:32 AM on June 23, 2006

If you have the lifetime subscription plan, rather than month to month, it is very much worth selling on Ebay, cragislist or whatever. Lifetime is no longer available, and these units hold value just for that.
posted by Joh at 3:11 PM on June 23, 2006

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