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Programs recorded on FOXSAT compatibility

Tedm

New Member
I've had a FOXSAT HDR for some years and have accumulated two external USB drives with lots of programs which are NET3 format. If I buy the latest version of satellite HD recorder from Humax will these earlier recordings play when the disks are plugged in? The recordings are mostly in HD format. Do later versions of Humax boxes use a different disc format? I'm sure the USB disks are EXT3 because I couldn't access them from Humax until they were formatted when they were new.

Alternatively, does someone know a way of getting the video off the net3 format onto NTFS or FAT32 - MP4?
 

MartinLiddle

Super Moderator
Staff member
I've had a FOXSAT HDR for some years and have accumulated two external USB drives with lots of programs which are NET3 format.
What is NET3?
If I buy the latest version of satellite HD recorder from Humax will these earlier recordings play when the disks are plugged in?
If they are SD recordings then they should work but you will need to hide the sidecar files.
The recordings are mostly in HD format.
Unless you have been using the custom firmware and Nowsters patch the recordings will be encrypted and cannot be played on any other device.
Do later versions of Humax boxes use a different disc format? I'm sure the USB disks are EXT3 because I couldn't access them from Humax until they were formatted when they were new.
Depends which Humax box you are talking about; they use a number of different file systems but all are standards in Linux .[/quote]
 

grahamlthompson

Well-Known Member
I've had a FOXSAT HDR for some years and have accumulated two external USB drives with lots of programs which are NET3 format. If I buy the latest version of satellite HD recorder from Humax will these earlier recordings play when the disks are plugged in? The recordings are mostly in HD format. Do later versions of Humax boxes use a different disc format? I'm sure the USB disks are EXT3 because I couldn't access them from Humax until they were formatted when they were new.

Alternatively, does someone know a way of getting the video off the net3 format onto NTFS or FAT32 - MP4?
Some confusion, the recording files are standard transport stream files they do not need any conversion. The file system used isn't relevant other than the fact that when the disk is connected to a PC directly it needs to support the file system. At a guess your hard drives are formatted to use the linux file system EXT3. Windows does not natively support EXT3 so you have two options.

1 Get a free linux boot usb stick or CD and boot your PC from it so it temporarily runs Linux.

2 Install a EXT2/3 Linux driver on your PC - Google EXT2FS.

However as Martin says unless you had the Custom Firmware installed and specifically Nowsters patch your HD recordings will not be usable. Had you done so you could copy the recording files directly to a PC, or even play them back directly on a 2nd generation Humax Freesat+ pvr over your home network. You will need to keep the Foxsat until you have viewed all the HD recordings.

The second generation Humax boxes Freesat+ boxes support NTFS which windows supports natively and like EXT3 supports files larger than 4GB, this I suspect is why you didn't use the FAT32 FS (max file size 4GB) which your PC wouldn't have any problem with.
 
OP
T

Tedm

New Member
Gentlemen,

Thank you for your prompt and informative answers to my query. It seems that I'm stuck with encoded recordings that are useless for transfer to a later model - I suppose that the 'Enc' note by the HD tag in the file list shows this. The user handbook is very uninformative about a number of things.
Most the recordings are off-air sporting events which have been viewed but are not likely to be retransmitted. I would be unhappy to dispose of them. I assume the encoding is to save disc space. Some form of compression?
Incidentally there is no model number on 'Foxsat HDR' that I can find. Also, I've plugged a FAT32 disc into the box and its existence is recognised including the folder tree but no operation is allowed. Are the later versions as restrictive as this?

Perhaps I should keep the Humax just to play back the files I have and buy 'Smart' TV with satelite tuners built in and recording facilities - but that may open another can of worms!

Any way, thanks again for clarifying my problem.

Ted
 

Trev

The Dumb One
Be wary of smart TVs with 'recording facilities' as they don't get good press from users. I have a Samsung smart TV with Freesat/ Freeview and FTA sat tuners, the recording and media facilities are less than good. If you are serious about recording TV, either from sat or Freeview, get a dedicated recorder, they are much more flexible. As a for instance, if I have got my TV playing on timeslip, I cannot get up the EPG unless I stop timeslip, If I am recording, the set complains that the EPG may not be complete. There does not appear to be series folders and all the recordings are at the top level so if you have a lot, it's a bugger's muddle to find the one you want. I have a Fox HDR2T for terrestrial and have a Foxsat for satellite (retired) as, especially with the custom firmware for both, they really are the bees knees, even if a bit of 'old hat'. I use my TV for any catchup that I want to view.
 

grahamlthompson

Well-Known Member
They are encrypted which does not save space, to lock the recordings to the box that created them. It's a requirement of the freesat spec that the broadcaster is able to make the box encrypt on recording for HD content. The compression codec used for HD is H264/AVC and SD is mpeg2. If you are happy with SD copies of the encrypted recordings, there are three of ways of recording these in real time from the box analogue outputs (scart or RCA phono).

Record using a DVD recorder or a VHS tape recorder.

Use a PC with a usb capture device or a video card with analogue inputs.

Use a PC with a firewire card and a DV capture device. Some DV camcorders have AV in and can digitise this content. Stand alone (quite expensive) DV capture boxes exist.

http://www.photospecialist.co.uk/grass-valley-advc55?dfw_tracker=2487-4638&gclid=CjwKEAiA6rrBBRDsrLGM4uTPkWASJADnWZQ4TKPEzhx0vC3A9gtw_oR3a5gbpZB5yvLYqoeLuMVQ-hoCxkvw_wcB

The latter will give the best quality recordings.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
It seems that I'm stuck with encoded recordings that are useless for transfer to a later model - I suppose that the 'Enc' note by the HD tag in the file list shows this. The user handbook is very uninformative about a number of things.
It's written for the HDR-FOX not the Foxsat, but the concepts are very similar:

Things Every... (click) section 5 (but ignore the links to information about decryption - these do not apply to the Foxsat).

Be careful what you call "encoded" - practically all media files are encoded (ie some alternative representation of the actual raw data), usually to save space / bandwidth, but also to provide robustness in the data transfer. Even data on disk is encoded to suit the storage medium and provide error detection/correction. Encryption, on the other hand, is a method of enforcing rights management - a secret message, for example, is encrypted and only the intended recipient has the means to decrypt it and therefore the "right" to read it. The difference between encoding and encrypting is that the former usually has methods to convert back to raw data available in the public domain, but the latter requires methods that are either kept secret, or require additional data (ie a decryption key) that is not publicised.

In your case the encryption is enforcing the right of the media providers that their HiDef material shall not be ripped off. Digital Rights Management for some types of media file (eg iTunes) uses encryption.

IIRC the Foxsat doesn't stream recorded content, only encrypts HiDef recordings, and only decrypts HiDef when outputting to HDMI (for TV playback). Thus the only way to get non-encrypted HiDef files out of it is by subverting the recording process... which is available using "Nowster's Patch".
 
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grahamlthompson

Well-Known Member
SD recordings are not encoded, the raw digital data stream is written to disk as is (so is HD with Nowsters patch), it is though compressed using a lossy compression codec at the broadcast end, if it was not it would be near impossible to handle the data requirement. There is no key required to recover the data any device with a suitable decoder will do it. The Freeview EPG from the BBC though is encoded (Huffman). In both cases the actual broadcast is not encrypted in any way both on Satellite and Freeview. Work out the data required to create a single second of HD using 24 bit full RGB representation. 1920 x 1080 x 24 x 25 = 1244160000 bits. You are not going to get much content on a 500GB disk.
 
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Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
SD recordings are not encoded
They are. They're just not encrypted. That's why it's so important not to get technical terms confused.

Conversion of raw video data to a compressed format is encoding - that's why the software or hardware that does it is called a codec (a contraction of coder/decoder).
 

grahamlthompson

Well-Known Member
They are. They're just not encrypted. That's why it's so important not to get technical terms confused.

Conversion of raw video data to a compressed format is encoding - that's why the software or hardware that does it is called a codec (a contraction of coder/decoder).
http://www.studylecturenotes.com/journalism-mass-communication/encoding-and-decoding-in-communication-process

As I said the BBC use encoding to deliver the Freeview epg (Huffman Encoding), the epg data cannot be displayed without decoding using a key which is common to all Freeview certified devices. My Vbox will not display the epg for BBC channels as it is encoded (but not encrypted). There is no key required to remove the compression it's a standard algorithm that does not conceal the contents in any way and is essential to make it broadcastable.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
As I said the BBC use encoding to deliver the Freeview epg (Huffman Encoding), the epg data cannot be displayed without decoding using a key which is common to all Freeview certified devices. My Vbox will not display the epg for BBC channels as it is encoded (but not encrypted). There is no key required to remove the compression it's a standard algorithm that does not conceal the contents in any way and is essential to make it broadcastable.
But it's still encoded, and your post 8 says it isn't.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
That's correct. It's a form of DRM, just not a very secure one. The only real "security" to it is that using it without licence is an infringement of copyright, and having it encrypted - even if not securely - means that anyone decrypting it can be assumed to be aware they are infringing the rights.
 

grahamlthompson

Well-Known Member
If they are not, then why do you need various codecs to be able to play them?
If I said to you that in the following data every data byte represented a 8 bit grey scale pixel and was followed by a second byte indicating the number of times this pixel is repeated. This would compress the data if a large number of repeats occurred (losslessly). Anyone with the information could recover the original data by simply knowing the algorithm.

In the case of mpeg compression the data for a small section is contained in a data structure known as a Group Of Pictures (GOP), The first set of data in the GOP contains a full frame of data (I Frame), subsequent frames contain difference frames. The mpeg decoder rebuilds the subsequent frames from the I frame and differences. The success of this depends on the amount of data thrown away which depends on how efficient the encoder is and the version of mpeg used together with the bitrate used to create the GOP. The mpeg decoder reverses the process to recover as far as possible the original data stream. There is nothing protected in the data, any hardware or software built decoder will do the job without reference to any other data. DVD uses mpeg2 and home DVD's are not encrypted so can easily be copied. Commercial DVD's scramble the contents (encodes) the mpeg2 using the CSS system (long since cracked of course).

DV camcorders compress the data (in a intraframe format, there is full data for every frame) using the DV codec. Because of the small amount of compression the data rate is too high to use USB, capturing DV content requires a firewire interface and stores the captures in a .avi container. HD DV camcorders combine DV compression with mpeg to make it possible to still use firewire.
 
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Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
You're missing the point. The point is the difference between encoding and encryption, and your remark in post 8.
 

grahamlthompson

Well-Known Member
If I said to you that in the following data every data byte represented a 8 bit grey scale pixel and was followed by a second byte indicating the number of times this pixel is repeated. This would compress the data if a large number of repeats occurred (losslessly). Anyone with the information could recover the original data by simply knowing the algorithm.

In the case of mpeg compression the data for a small section is contained in a data structure known as a Group Of Pictures (GOP), The first set of data in the GOP contains a full frame of data (I Frame), subsequent frames contain difference frames. The mpeg decoder rebuilds the subsequent frames from the I frame and differences. The success of this depends on the amount of data thrown away which depends on how efficient the encoder is and the version of mpeg used together with the bitrate used to create the GOP. The mpeg decoder reverses the process to recover as far as possible the original data stream. There is nothing protected in the data, any hardware or software built decoder will do the job without reference to any other data. DVD uses mpeg2 and home DVD's are not encrypted so can easily be copied. Commercial DVD's scramble the contents (encodes) the mpeg2 using the CSS system (long since cracked of course).
You're missing the point. The point is the difference between encoding and encryption, and your remark in post 8.
Sorry it's you missing the point. Encoding is not the same as using a compression codec, it requires some sort of external data rather than a published algorithm to make sense of the data (like the Huffman tables). Encryption requires a specific key unique to the device or message in the case of a transmitted message eg the German enigma machine used to encrypt messages in WW2.

I agree that encoding is incorrectly used to describe the process of compressing (codeing) a digital signal, it still doesn't make it technically correct to describe it as such.
 

prpr

Well-Known Member
I'm sorry glt, but YOU are wrong. Why is a codec called a codec if it's not doing coding and decoding as you seem to be asserting?
 

grahamlthompson

Well-Known Member
I'm sorry glt, but YOU are wrong. Why is a codec called a codec if it's not doing coding and decoding as you seem to be asserting?
So what's the distinction between a digital transmission designed to make it not easily generally usable (BBC Freeview epg/Freesat epg), one that can only be viewed with a smart card - Sky subscription channels, one that is transmitted without any form of encryption, viewable and recordable on any FTA DVB-S2/DVB-T2 box/device usually with no epg other than now/next (and available on any other device) , and the same transmissions accessed via the Freesat/Freeview epg on licensed devices encrypted on the device. ?

In all cases it's the same source. Historically as per the link I posted EN-coding is designed to obscure the data from anyone else.
 
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