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Sky Videoguard upgrade - new cards to follow?

easysat

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pj::
#1
I came across this information note which deals with a compulsory upgrade of the Videoguard system on a professional satellite decoder: http://www.linkres.co.uk/CA FAQ.htm . The note hints at a card reissue in the near future.

Presumably the current software changes on Digiboxes include a similar upgrade affecting the so called NDS Verifier. (That's the extra bit of CA circuitry that checks if there is an official card in the slot.) Maybe someone has found a potential loophole in the existing cards.

It's interesting that Sky still haven't rolled out an upgrade for the early Amstrad boxes. I wonder what they would do if it proves impossible to upgrade the very first Digiboxes with the first generation ST processor and separate NDS ICAM chips?
 

rolfw

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#2
Yes, that would certainly lead me to that conclusion, very interesting. Perhaps the rumours of a hardware hack are truer than we think and this is to counter that aspect, rather than hacker progress on the card itself.
 

PoloMint

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#3
Off topic but just where and why would you get a professional satellite decoder with Sky videoguard?

Is it the kind of thing cable companies use when they are showing extracts/highlights from Sky’s programming as I heard that they just used standard digiboxes for that?

Perhaps Sky will have to replace all the Ams-100 FOC if they are un-upgradeable, might be time to start buying some on e-bay and wait for them to be transformed into nice new ones-
 

rolfw

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#4
These professional units are multiple tuner models for use in Hotels and general SMATV applications, they are much higher quality than the domestic unit and I would guess more reliable.

They I believe, also have features like auto reset to preset channel etc, in the event of a power disruption.

With regard to the Amstrad 100s, they'll probably do diddley squat with them if they are not tied to a legitimate subscription, they may even refuse to do anything free of charge if the box was bought on the second hand market.
 

PoloMint

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#5
Can one buy/obtain professional units then?

Many a communal system I have seen struggling on digiboxes and digimemos leaving the viewers with peculiar happenings and red dogs.

Then again getting a residential Sky card to work in one might be a laugh “no, honest, I just bought it for personal use and I’m not using it to feed Sky1 to everyone in a block of 65 flats in the south of Spain

Still it would be interesting to see one, better just book into a hotel and get friendly with the man with the keys.

Yea the old Amstrad 100 idea was a bit far fetched, however Sky do seem quite eager to change old Grundigs that have been playing up since the update, however they do have subscriptions with them.
 

rolfw

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#6
It would appear that the Tandberg units in question are single channel units for racked systems, go to the site mentioned above, but just the index page and follow the product link to the Tandberg page, I believe the NDS one is the last of the three..
 

Channel Hopper

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#7
The Tandberg units as mentioned on the link, along with Scopus and a couple of others are used in mobile or SNG vans and at broadcasters headquarters for the monitoring of transmissions

Dont expect much change from £2000 if they allow you to purchase one
 

Channel Hopper

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#8
Just some general release notes of the Scopus 2800 IRD (which will be useful once NDS release the CA as a Seperate PCMCIA module, and the Tandberg unit that has built in Videoguard CA
 

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Channel Hopper

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#9
Sorry the Tandberg file even when zipped is too big to send. You will have to imagine a thin metal box with flashing lights and lots of rear panel connections
 

easysat

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#10
Someone on another forum has claimed that Sky cards will be swapped starting from October. He was talking about Sky sending out 125,000 cards a day, five days a week for three months. Mind you there are no facts to confirm this, unless someone knows if they're putting everyone on permanent overtime at NDS's card manufacturing plants (there's one in Maidenhead if my memory serves me right).
 

rolfw

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#11
I'll phone them and tell them that they can save the postage, as I'm not too far away I'll go and pick mine up. ;)
 
P

pmcmill

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#12
Yet more hassle for us overseas viewers :mad:
Mind you I can't complain as they did move Sky Sports on to a southern beam transponder :)
 

easysat

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#13
A colleague just forwarded me an e-mail form Sky confirming that a card change is going ahead. Full details are in the next Sky magazine for those who are subscribers.

The good news is that Sky says all Digiboxes will work with the new cards, so there is no problem anticipated with early Pace 2200's, Amstrad DRX100's etc.
 

dishdoctor

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#14
Does this mean Sky will handle 125,000 phone calls every day for 3 months authorising the new cards,or will the cards self-authorise in the first box they are put in,and postmen will drive around in Rolls Royces.............just a thought........Brian
 

rolfw

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#15
I would guess that these cards could be pre-authorised Brian, it would certainly make life easier for them.
 

dishdoctor

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#16
For quite a while Sky did not ask for the digibox sreial number and version number,so,could this be a problem for the new card being pre-authorised because this means the card would work in any box,or,take your old card out and put your new card in within one minute as the new card could have the old card number in its memory...........Brian
 

rolfw

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#17
As far as I know Brian, Sky should have the vast majority of box serial numbers, but then with the odd few, it may be necessary to ring for activation.
 

dishdoctor

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#18
For the last six months,maybe a lot longer,Sky have not asked for the box serial number when authorising cards,see other threads on this site,so it will be more than a few phone calls.....Brian
 

rolfw

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#19
That's BBC cards Brian, the Sky subscription cards will either be authorised by telephone (where they ask for the box number), or by the new installation option in the installers menu and this submits the box serial number.
 
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The_Shepherd

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#20
I just wondered - is the new issue of cards perhaps Sky's way of cutting down on "foreign" viewers? I know how much of a pain it was getting a second BBC card registered when my neighbour decided to let his family use his old box in Ireland. If we have to go through the same drawn out procedure all over again, it is bound to make some viewers just give up I reckon. Plus, SKY are bound to catch a few people out who ring up from abroad to get their card authorised, as their system detects automatically if you're not using a British landline.