Western Digital DVR Expander Installation for Comcast 8300HD DVR

by Peter Schulz

The Western Digital instructions are a bit sparse and assume you know more about your Comcast DVR than I did. So, here are the Western Digital Instructions, in bold print, along with the notes I made during my installation.


Turn your TV On and leave it On until the installation is complete. But do not attempt this installation if a program is scheduled to be recorded during the installation process.

1. Check the recording space used on your [Comcast] digital video recorder (DVR). Write down the percentage of used and available space.

To check the recording space used on your Comcast DVR, press MyDVR on your remote to display the list of programs you have recorded. Then press the blue Preferences button "B" and select Recording Space Used from the menu. Write the number on a piece of paper and then press the red button "C" to return to your recorded list.

Then press the power on/off button on the [Comcast] DVR to turn it off and then disconnect it's power cord.

2. Connect the AC adapter cord to the [WD] DVR Expander and an electrical outlet as shown in the diagram included in the instructions. The power LED illuminates.

CAUTION: Do not connect to the auxiliary power connector on the back of the [Comcast] DVR, as it is not an adequate power source for external drives.

3. Connect the eSATA cable to the [WD] DVR Expander and [Comcast] DVR.

4. Power on the [Comcast] DVR.

To power on the Comcast DVR, first plug it into the AC outlet. The display in the Comcast DVR will briefly say Boot and then go blank for a up tp three or four minutes.  Eventually the Comcast display will show the time of day. Then and only then should you push the power on/off button on the Comcast DVR. Stated another way, do not push the power on/off button until the Comcast DVR displays the time of day.

When a message appeared on the TV that asked if I wanted to format the external device. I selected "Yes". Nothing happened for a minute or so and then the TV displayed a Comcast Ad.

5. Check the recording space on your DVR. If the DVR Expander was detected properly by the DVR, the percentage of used space should be decreased and the percentage of available space should be increased.

I checked the the recording space used and it was the same as when I started. But, because the Comcast DVR had recognized the external device and given me the chance to select Format External Device, I decided to try just restarting the Comcast DVR.

So I powered the Comcast DVR down, unplugged it, waited 30 seconds, replugged it, waited for the time to appear, and then pushed the power on/off button. A message appeared on the TV that said "The external storage device works with this DVR"

Again I checked the recording space used and was pleased to see that the original 25% I had recorded had gone to 5%.


If the DVR Expander was not detected properly, disconnect the drive as described in “Disconnecting the DVR Expander” in the next section then repeat the steps above.


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