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How long does it take to refresh the Guide contents?

GBAfamily Posts: 10 Spectator

Tech support on the phone, and tech support in the store, insist that the Guide should refresh completely in one hour.

I've never had that work, ever.

I one hour, I sometimes get the Guide contents for this afternoon. Maybe even the evening. But never for the full week, so that I can record the sporting events that are coming up later in the week.

That usually takes 24 hours. Or more.

Maybe it's just slow in my market. My market seems to be behind the times in several ways (no 4-tuner DVR, DVR maxes out at 500 GB, no options for alternate DVR boxes, etc.)

Is this (taking longer than an hour to refresh the entire Guide) typical for everyone?

Best Answer

  • Satch
    Satch Posts: 5,336 Contributor
    Answer ✓

    Hi @GBAfamily ,

    Although I am not familiar with the speed specs for downloading the guide software, upon your further explanation of your case, it sounds like things are good. You are correct, if signals are good, they are going to be good across the board. There are no different signals or lines for Internet or TV.

    I-Guide is an older, but very reliable platform. In reviewing your helpful updated information, I would leave things as they are. Try to avoid rebooting. I advise against "Rocking the boat if the sea is calm." Some divisions at Spectrum have older markets and head-ends than others. However, you mentioned your strong and very reliable Internet In view of the additional information, I don't think you need a service call and would advise against it at this time. Don't swap out equipment unless you have to do that. You don't know what you are going to get in a swap or exchange. Your guide is good. Your box is fine.

    If things start going south for like a week for more, where they are more than something like overnight maintience, you can report the symptoms. But I think for now, things are good.



  • Satch
    Satch Posts: 5,336 Contributor

    Sup @GBAfamily

    Might need some more information to help. Some questions.

    1.) What model box did they give you?

    2.) Is it running New Spectrum Guide?

    3.) On new installs it can take a few days for the guide to fully populate and refresh. If the guide is a new install, you might not be able to go out more than two days ahead. If the box has been rebooted recently, you also may not be able to go out more than two days ahead. It will be much longer than one hour for sure.


  • GBAfamily
    GBAfamily Posts: 10 Spectator

    Thanks Satch

    Model DCX3510-M ... aka model DCX3510/F080/012/500 Platform ID 2071 Phase 1

    I don't know how to figure out what Guide it's running.

    The DVR box is a replacement of an existing DVR box. So I guess that counts as a new install.

    And yes, I have the same problem any time that I lose power, or have to reset the box by unplugging and plugging it back in. Longer than an hour ... in fact, quite some time. Got it. Glad that it's not just me. (Actually, I wish it was just me. Sad that this is a system-wide problem.) Thanks again Satch

  • William_M
    William_M Posts: 1,129 ✅ Verified Employee Moderator

    Hi @GBAfamily!

    How long is it taking the guide to populate information more than 2 days out? How frequently are you needing to reboot? If it never gets to a point where even a full week is populating I think there is a bigger issue, such as a signal problem or receiver issue. Do you have other receivers in your home with the same problem?

  • GBAfamily
    GBAfamily Posts: 10 Spectator

    The Guide takes at least 48 hours to fully populate. I haven't measured it, but as Satch says, it routinely takes "a few days."

    It always populates--eventually.

    Frequent reboots? My box was about 5 years old and it was getting worse and worse. So earlier this week I switched it out for a new box. (Sadly the "new" box is the exact same 2-tuner 500 GB model as my 5-year-old box--man, you would think we could get a modern tuner, but that's another whole story.) Anyway, so this is a brand new box, and it still hasn't populated.

    Oh and the service technician checked my signal on the same day that I installed the new box. "All good," he said.

    And yes, the other receivers don't fully populate in an hour. I'm thinking this is "working as expected." Sadly, this makes no sense at all. The Guide is what? 10 M-bytes? 100? Even a G-byte? And it's just pain text. No graphics, no videos, no sound. This should take at least several seconds to populate. Maybe even a minute. I'm guessing that there was an engineering decision made somewhere, by somebody, to throttle the process of populating the Guide. Maybe the decision was made back in the days of modems. Ouch.

  • Satch
    Satch Posts: 5,336 Contributor

    Hello @GBAfamily,

    Some help for you and a question for Spectrum staff.

    @GBAfamily , to find the guide that you have on your box, Google search, "What guide do I have?", Spectrum. One of the first results will be a listings page where you can enter your address and zip. You can than see the name of the guide on your box.

    Gracenote/Neilsen does the guide listings for Spectrum. Guys, should guide population data be reasonably complete within a 24 hour time period.

    @GBAfamily Is your guide slow in scrolling and searching? 48 hours on a first box install is normal. 48 hours all the time for populated guide data is a little too slow.

    The box install tech may have only done a general OK of your signals. Did he go outside and check your drop line, which is responsible for your main signals and connections for all cable related information being relayed into your home? Bad weather, animal chews, old inside and outside wiring can affect box speed and population of data? Did he check the wiring in your basement if applicable?

    @GBAfamily If you are bothered by box slowness in general, or your guide not populating within two days. Call Spectrum and set up a "Signal and Drop Line Test" for this tech visit. The tech will do a more extensive investigation of the signals and wiring of your home. The general conditions are the following:

    1.) New box installs can take several days to fully populate, as stated.

    2.) Freshly rebooted boxes should have at least seven days of programing within 24 hours.

    3.) The exception would be that the guide/search is down for maintenance. But this should only happen from time to time, not a regular thing.

    Due to your guide not populating as fast as I would like to see, I would get that signal and drop line test done. Report back

    4.) Very important-New boxes or modems, routers, (etc.) will not solve bad lines or signal problems! Only a tech updating or replacing lines and wiring will resolve bad signal or line issues.


  • GBAfamily
    GBAfamily Posts: 10 Spectator

    It looks like I have an i-Guide. (Using Google, I couldn't find a website that let me type in an address and reveal my exact Guide model. But the illustrated "how to figure this out" guide was pretty helpful.)

    So the slow populate-speed seems to be exactly the same for this new install as it always has been for every single reboot. If I reboot, then it takes 48 hours, at least. This new box install: exactly the same.

    The population issue is only an issue after reboots (power outages, etc.). If it's just a quick power blip, the programming stays. But if it's out for an hour or more then that's the same as a reboot.

    The Guide is never slow for scrolling and searching. The TV signal seems to be strong. I get some glitching once in a while, but that's pretty rare.. Usually the signal is very good.

    The tech only tested outside, not inside. But I have to say that my Internet speed is really remarkable. So from a technical standpoint, I can't imagine that my Internet signal strength is great and my TV signal strength is horrible.

    The reason that I suspect some sort of software-based throttling is that it makes no sense--intellectually--that 100 M-bytes should take even 24 hours to upload. That's 4 M-bytes per hour (66 K-bytes per minute)? Those are analog modem speeds. Even if it was 1,000 M-bytes instead of 100 ... my cable box is capable of receiving data several orders of magnitude faster than that. So if the upload isn't constrained on the receiving end, then it must be constrained on the sending end. OK, I get it that Spectrum has to constantly update millions of desktop sets with constantly updated guide data. But the Guide data is not customized per desktop. This just doesn't make sense. I don't imagine that they're doing this on purpose; but it's easy to imagine that they're doing this by accident. Throttles were put in place years ago, and no one has thought "Oh wait, we should go back and fix that."

    Thanks for all your help Satch. I suppose I should ask for a tech visit to check signal and drop. Thanks again.

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