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Posts posted by kenh

  1. There is something else to switch to?

    Uh, yeah ... I think people have mentioned MPEG Streamclip like 3-4 times already in this thread.


    You need to get a program called tivodecode (google it); it doesn't have a GUI, but it's a reasonable program to decrypt the TiVo files. Once you do that, then they're regular MPEG files and tools like MPEG Streamclip can handle them just fine.

  2. kenh, I think this is a different issue. The spinning ball happens when trying to select a video in the TiVo section of the Media Browser. Also, all works when the OP uses Toast in a different user account on his Mac. I believe you're referring to the spinning ball appearing when trying to edit the TiVo videos. You're correct that deleting preferences often makes no difference but there are many instances when it does fix the problem, so it's an easy thing to start with when troubleshooting. I like your analogy with the fuel filter.


    Fair enough; I missed that part, my apologies. Do things work when you the the "Toast It" button in TiVo Transfer?


    Now that the video is .mpg rather than .tivo it can be edited using MPEG Streamclip which is free but requires Apple's $20 QuickTime MPEG 2 Playback Component. Editing involves marking in and out points and deleting what's between them. When finished editing choose Convert to MPEG from the File menu to save the edited version for use in Toast.


    I will note that if your goal is to convert stuff so you can watch it on your iPad and if you're using MPEG Streamclip then you don't even need Toast; you can simply convert it to MPEG-4 format and at that point iTunes can use it directly (you also won't be limited in resolution output like you are with Toast).

  3. I deleted all the plist and prefs still locks up....toast not respondiing....Apple support even had me delete a bunch of stuff still same issue.


    This is a known problem with Toast & TiVo files (you can see other threads on this forum about this very problem). I worked the issue with tech support and after a few weeks my support ticket was closed without a resolution. The impression I'm getting is that it's a known problem but it isn't going to be fixed.


    What I personally did was switch to MPEG Streamclip; that worked fine for me.


    And as a side note ... that whole sequence of "delete preferences, reinstall your program" thing that is the standard suggestion? For me that's the computer equivalent of having your fuel filter changed ... it has never, EVER for me solved a problem I was having.

  4. I just bought Toast Titanium 11 for Mac and it won't convert videos. I load the video, it starts to show converting, but never moves from 0%. Please help. I am a teacher and need to help students. joe@digital3000.net


    You're not running into the exact problem I ran into, but if you look at other posts on this forum you'll see TiVo support in Toast 11 is mostly hit and miss; sometimes it will work okay, but on other files it will completely crap out (my main problems were in editing, but I had files which would just crash Toast completely).


    I ran the issue up to the second level of tech support, where the ticket was closed with no resolution. I think at this point your options are:


    1. Suck it up and deal (which is basically what Roxio told me).
    2. Use something else. There is a freeware command-line tool called "tivodecode" to decrypt the file you download off of the TiVo, and then you can use a program like MPEG Streamclip to edit and/or convert the file. You don't get a nice interface, but it all works. MPEG Streamclip is free, but you need to buy a $20 plugin from Apple to make it work.

  5. Interesting. Some stations send 1920 x 1080i HD video and others send 1440 x 720p. Could that be the reason for the difference?


    Maybe. The stuff that caused problems for me is definitely 1080i (you can see interlacing artifacts when it is edited with MPEG Streamclip); I didn't see if the working stuff is 720p or not. When I was with Cox they upconverted everything to 1080i, but I'm not sure what FiOS does. But I didn't see much point in tracking down the exact parameters of the failure, since 1) it wouldn't help me since apparently everything I want to convert is affected, and 2) Roxio's official answer to the problem is "Chuck you, Farley"; any additional work I did on this wouldn't solve the problem.

  6. I'm not sure if this is the same problem that I have, but have noticed that ABC, NBC, CBS, KTTV work fine in the editor. When I try a TV show from Fox (channel 11 in Southern California)

    I only get about 15 minutes into the program before it stops, get the spinning beach ball and have to exit the program. I hope this helps.


    Yeah, I noticed that it does seem to depend on the network. I tried one or two broadcast shows and they worked alright. But that doesn't really help, as the shows I really want to convert are the ones that Toast fails on :(

  7. Hey everyone ... one final followup.


    My ticket got closed by Roxio as "Solved". The only way I can interpret that is that they're saying, "look, we're done with this". To me that means that they aren't going to fix it, so if you are a TiVo user you should DEFINITELY not upgrade. Looks like Roxio is officially throwing in the towel when it comes to TiVo support. If other people want to continue to try with tech support then of course they are welcome to do so, and if you get a more positive resolution then I would love to hear about it, but I wouldn't expect anything.

  8. Hey everyone ... I received another reply from Roxio tech support about this issue. My interpretation of their most recent reply is that they're basically telling me, "suck it up and deal."


    Now they didn't SAY exactly that ... it was very apologetic and said that they hoped to provide me with a better customer service experience next time. But they also didn't say that they were working on solving the issue (even though I had asked about that three times). But given everything else they said and didn't say I am kinda left with the impression that this isn't going to be fixed, at least not anytime soon.


    I tried using Toast to edit some shorter files which had worked in the past, and in the process of editing them I had Toast crash completely, which made me lose the edit points of a dozen files ... arrrrggghhh. I didn't want to deal with the general crappiness of Toast 10 (which would occasionally silently truncate the output files), so I finally gave up and wrote a perl script which extracted the metadata from the TiVo files, ran MPEG Streamclip on them to edit and transcode them, and then imported them into iTunes. At least for me this workflow works out better for me than Toast ever did, so it's a win all around (except the money I'm out on Toast 11).


    I guess the moral of this story is that if you want to use Toast to edit/transcode TiVo files, you should either stick with an older version (which have their own problems) or wait until this is fixed with Toast 11 (but don't expect a fix anytime soon).

  9. Until this gets fixed (and I know Roxio is aware of it) one workaround is to use TiVo Decoder to remove the .tivo package from the .mpg video in the Finder, and then use MPEG Streamclip to edit the .mpg. When that is complete save the video in Streamclip and add the resulting video to Toast where it no longer needs editing but still has the AC-3 audio and the HD MPEG 2 format.


    I did try out MPEG Streamclip and it works fine with the files that gives Toast problems, but forgive me for being harsh ... if MPEG Streamclip is part of the solution, then I guess I don't see the value of Toast. The MPEG encoder in Toast is faster, that is for sure, but I don't need to be in front of the computer during that process.

  10. Has this been resolved? TiVo Conversion worked like clockwork on Toast 10, and I thought the new Toast 11 would make it a little better. Its been out for awhile, and any bugs should be worked out by now. Right? Actually, no. I started up Toast, grabbed some shows that were transferred from my Tivo, and bam, "Wrong FileCacheItem instance choosed for reading" error.


    In a word ... no, it's not fixed.


    I just counted and I've had a total exchange of 20 messages between myself and Roxio tech support. It got bumped up to next level support, and the best answer I got was, "Convert it to another file format and THEN try editing it". Which worked, but it stripped out all of the file metadata (and the aspect ratio was wrong). That problem may be on my end, but seriously ... if that's the final answer then I'm simply going to switch to something else. I've asked a couple of times if that's the final answer, but they haven't answered me on that yet.


    I would encourage you to report this to Roxio tech support, but be prepared for the first level tech support runaround. One suggestion: reference my support ticket number, 1297134. Maybe that will help?

  11. I got a rather lame response to my inquiry about this problem -- somebody in Customer Support sent me this generic article about dealing with application crashes: http://kb.roxio.com/search.aspx?URL=/content/000013TT&PARAMS=set-locale=en

    Yeah, I know ... believe me, I went through the whole gamut of those responses. I had to go through 4 of those responses until it was escalated. I am sympathetic to their position, since I once was in their job, and 90% of the time it really is something dumb.


    I would suggest you try the steps listed in that note (they don't look like they're harmful, except maybe I wouldn't personally do the step that suggests running Cocktail), test it out, and then politely but firmly respond and say "Look, my problem isn't with LAUNCHING Toast, it's a problem when I'm in the middle of it and Screen Sharing is not an issue", and of course also say that you tried all of those things and it didn't solve the problem.

  12. It was shortly after July 4 because I used the editor to make a archive copy of the Boston fireworks. I'll get in touch with Roxio, too. I also checked it with my MacBook Pro running 10.7.1 with the same result. It works fine with standard definition transfers.


    Hm, according to the Interwebs 10.6.8 was released on June 23, but a supplemental update was released on July 25. So maybe that did have something to do with it.

  13. I just gave it a go and am encountering the same problem. It used to work with the transfers I tested today so I don't know what's changed. It must be related to an Apple OS update because I went back to Toast 11.0.2 and 11.0.0 and the problem appears there as well. Very frustrating!


    Roxio is working on a Toast 11 update to address some Lion issues. Maybe a fix for this will be included


    When was the last time you tested it? I ask because 10.6.8 has been out for a while.


    I am now working the issue with Roxio customer support, and I am going through the whole "reinstall everything" sequence. When I initially tried with 11.0.0, I didn't get that exact error, but things hung up at a different spot.


    If you would be so kind as to file a customer support request so they don't think it's just me, I think that would help both of us.

  14. What OS version are you running? I want to check if I can get this error. Does it matter if they are HD or SD programs? Explain a little more about when the error appears.


    I'm running 10.6.8. They are all HD versions (I generally record everything on my TiVo in HD), so I don't know if it only affects HD programs or not. If it matters, my cable provider is FiOS.


    The programs in question are hour-long shows on cable networks; some examples of shows that I've been having problems with are "Burn Notice" (USA), "Eureka", and "Alphas" (both SyFy).


    What EXACTLY happens is that I download the show using TiVo Transfer, and that works fine (that program is unchanged as we all know). I'll bring it into Toast, and then I'll start editing it to remove commercials. I'll be dragging the pointer to find a commercial, and at some point, I'll get the "rainbow pinwheel" for a few seconds, then the dialog box with the aforementioned error pops up. At that point I can SOMETIMES press "Ok" and get back to the main Toast window; if that doesn't work then Toast is hung and I have to kill it. These points appear at different spots in different files, but they're always the same spot in the same file.


    You can avoid it if you don't have the editor window show the bad frame; for example, if you know where the bad spot is, you can type in the clip point you want in the boxes below the video window and create a clip point just past (or before it). Figuring that out, however, can be a challenge.


    Once you create the clip points, the video transcodes fine. If you just hit "play" in the editor window, you can play past the bad spots fine.


    If you really are interested, I could provide you a sample video and my MAK key. But the affected ones are something like 6GB, so it's not exactly something I can email you :)

  15. Okay, so I bit the bullet and upgraded to Toast 11.


    The big change: the old hated editor based on Toast Video Player is gone. Hooray!


    However ... it turns out the new editor kinda sucks. It doesn't take forever to load up a video for editing, that part is nice. And you can select an exact frame for clipping, also nice (but kinda clunky). And Toast claims it can export at higher resolutions - cool! But ... I don't know what it is, but when I try editing down a bunch of hour-long TV shows, when I get to certain spots I get the strange and poorly written error message: "Wrong FileCacheItem instance choosed for reading". At that point I sometimes have to quit out of Toast completely or kill it from another window.


    I filed that as a support request, so we'll see what happens. The verdict? Unless your shows are all a half-hour or less, I would hold off upgrading right now to see if they fix it.

  16. TiVo Transfer hasn't changed with Toast 11 but editing out commercials is much improved in Toast 11. Toast 11 has its own editor rather than using the former Toast Video Player. So your editing woes should be a thing of the past when using Toast 11.


    Thanks, that's exactly the sort of thing that I was wondering about. Like I said, I can live with the suboptimal metadata handling with Toast, but the commercial editing was really the source of my woes (and the product information that was available on the web basically said nothing had changed with the TiVo support, which wasn't encouraging). I think I'll lay down the bucks for Toast 11!

  17. Hi, I'm a user of Toast 10 right now, and I've been thinking of upgrading to Toast 11. Right now my primary use of Toast is to download files from my TiVo, edit out commercials, and transcode them for the iPhone. I guess what I'm asking is ... has this improved at all in Toast 11?


    I can live with the poor metadata support and the resolution limitations (although, seriously, what the hell is up with that?). But the issues that vex me now are:


    • For some files, transcoding stops part of the way (always at a clip point). Moving the clip point fixes this, but it's frustrating to have to double check this all of the time.
    • Some files I have cannot be downloaded via TiVo Transfer. They start but stop only a little way in (like 16kB). I can download them via the web interface on the TiVo fine.
    • Some files cannot be edited with the video player. They either hang it or you can't select any points to clip.


    I'm close to just chucking it and going with iTiVo, but I still wanted to give Toast another chance. What else have people done?

  18. I just got a new Mac Pro running 10.6. Previously I was on a Power Mac G5 using Toast 9, and Tivo Transfer worked fine.


    I upgraded to Toast 10 on the new machine, and I downloaded the Beta2 version of Tivo Transfer.


    I have two TiVos; A Series 2 Dual Tuner, and a Series 3. Both TiVos appear in the list of TiVos, but only the Series 2 shows as having any shows on it. I can transfer shows off of it just fine; I can't get any shows off of the Series 3.


    One thing I just noticed; the spinning wheel at the lower right of the Tivo Transfer window spins a long time when I select the Series 3, and it shows at the top of the window a description of a show (I'm assuming the first one in the list). Nothing appears in the list, though.