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When asking for support, give as much information as possible. Do not e-mail or PM with just "I got a box it broke any ideas", "I've got no Sky channels" or similar, I need to know the box, something to identify you like the order number or e-mail used to order, exact details of the problem and exactly what you have done to cause it. I am not psychic, you need to help me to help you.

Please do not bombard me with e-mails. I get over 100 a day, it doesn't help when some people keep sending multiple e-mails when I don't answer for a few minutes. E-Mail is not a 24/7 live chat and if you do send another e-mail, then it goes to the end of the list. My spam filter does detect multiple e-mails as spam and that can delay the response even longer. If sending a follow-up message then send as a reply quoting previous text, do not send as a fresh e-mail as I wouldn't be able to follow the conversation.

For something general, try a Google search or a forum search. I get many e-mails asking for a click by click guide to loading channel lists, firmware or CCcam.cfg files etc, if you do a Google search, there are many responses and often a YouTube video to follow. Check the Bigmaq toolbar for any files that you need.

It's worth noting that some boxes can take several minutes to start up and if you remove the power to reboot, allow at least 30 seconds to fully discharge components before powering up again. When you do remove the power, do it by switching off at the wall, I have seen many boxes physically damaged by having the power cable pulled from the box and then rammed back in. Remember that physical damage is not covered under any warranty!

With almost any issue, 1st thing to try is to check all cables & connections and then reboot everything including your Modem & Router. Make sure Parental controls like Net Nanny and Sky Shield etc are disabled on your account.


DO TAKE REGULAR BACKUPS OF A LINUX BOX AND KEEP THEM SOMEWHERE SAFE (VERY IMPORTANT), this will enable you to recover from any catastrophic image problems/corrupted firmware etc

DO NOT FACTORY RESET A SATELLITE BOX (VERY IMPORTANT), this will usually delete all configuration including channel lists.

DO NOT DO A SOFTWARE UPDATE FROM THE MENU ON A LINUX BOX (VERY IMPORTANT), This can force a non-compatible driver to be installed and cause the box to not boot properly or worse still brick the box, it does VOID the warranty.

DO NOT LOAD UNPATCHED SOFTWARE ON A CHINESE LINUX BOX (VERY IMPORTANT), As above, this can force a non-compatible driver to be installed and cause the box to not boot properly or worse still brick the box, it does VOID the warranty.

WHAT IS MY BOX/LINE NUMBER, on a P&P box this is on a handwritten sticker on the base. If the line was delivered by e-mail, then check that e-mail.

MY CHANNELS ARE SCRAMBLED, check you have a working internet connection to the box, just checking your internet works on your PC is not enough. Check the IPTV Channels, OnDemand, TSMedia, Kodi or equivalent depending on the box. Check the Ethernet cable is properly connected and reboot everything including Modem/Router and Homeplugs if in use. Check your viewing card is properly inserted if you use a card. Disable any parental controls, "Sky Shield" etc.

I CAN'T GET SOME CHANNELS, check your channel list is up to date, channels do shuffle regularly. With the Skybox, I no longer update the channel list on the site but it's not difficult to update yourself. Linux based boxes use Autobouquets or Autobouquetsmaker which can be run manually from the Blue button Extensions Menu or the Plugins menu (Run it from a working channel), also then reboot the box from the main menu not by pulling power.

I CAN'T GET ANY CHANNELS, check your channel list is up to date, channels do shuffle regularly although usually not all of them at the same time. Check dish alignment, cables and connections, run the Autobouquetsmaker scanner. Reboot box.

I GET FREEZING AND GLITCHING ON CHANNELS, For Satellite, check dish alignment, cables and connections, run the Autobouquetsmaker scanner. Reboot box. For Cable, remove any surplus cable or splitters, eg if you have a 4 way splitter and only 3 in use, then change to 3 Way as the more splits, the weaker the signal. Same with any extra cable, many people have coils of surplus cable which saps signal. Check you're tuned to the correct Cable NetID. Rebooting your Internet modem & Router can help, also try Google's free DNS servers. If FTA channels are affected, then it's nothing to do with the Internet, if FTA channels are not affected, then it could be Internet related.

ALL I GET IS TUNE FAILED, This is exactly what it sounds like, the box has failed to tune to the set frequency. Usually this means the box is set to a non-active channel or you have a problem with the dish. Try selecting a different channel and if that doesn't work, check all cables, connections and your dish. It's also worth trying another power supply and remove any other boxes running off the same dish.

I CAN'T GET SOME HD CHANNELS LIKE SKY 1, SKY SPORTS, SKY ARTS & BT SPORT, as has been posted all over the internet, most HD channels are not available on any unofficial and some official boxes. SD channels are expected to be unaffected for some considerable time.

I CAN'T GET EPG DATA, The Skybox are very basic and don't have a good EPG, the FxS series with the latest firmware can get EPG data, you need to keep a USB stick inserted all the time and periodically download the data. The Linux boxes I set to automatically download EPG data overnight (6 to 9am). If the box is not powered and connected to the Internet at that time, then it cannot download the data. You can download EPG data manually from the Plugin - CrossEPG downloader or the Plugin - EPG Import - Manual option or Blue - CrossEPG downloader. CrossEPG also has the facility to Defragment the EPG data.

HOW DO I UPDATE THE CHANNELS ON F3/F5/F3S/F5S, You can download the channel list mentioned above, if needed, extract the TP_PROG.dbs from any archive and put it on a USB stick. Then from the box menu, select update by USB - Misc Files, select TP_Prog and press read. It will tell you it's done, then reboot the box.

HOW DO I RE-FLASH A Vu+ SOLO/MINI SOLO/S6000/I-BOX etc, You extract the files from any archive and put them exactly on the root of a freshly formatted USB stick, format in FAT32 and use a USB less than 8GB. To confirm, the vuplus folder goes in the root, inside that is the solo folder and inside that are usually 2, sometimes 3 or more files. Put the USB in the box and then apply power to the box. They can take upto 15 minutes to start flashing (usually less), the light on the USB stick will flash when it's being read at the start of the process. There are various different LED colours displayed. If it finishes with a slowly blinking LED, then you need to remove the USB and reboot the box. Sometimes it will automatically reboot after the flashing process has finished. You do need to be patient and wait for it to complete, it may appear to be doing nothing for some time. Other Vu+ based boxes flash in a similar manner, the solo2 type boxes, tap the front power button for 10 seconds after powering up to initiate the flash.

To flash a ViX image on a box with an old ViX already installed, it's even easier. Put the new image zip file on a USB stick in a folder called imagebackups (do not extract any files from the zip) and insert the USB into the box. Press Blue and then ViX and select image manager, highlight the zip file that you have just loaded and press OK. It will flash the image and reboot so long as the image is compatible with the box. If the box has a HDD, then using this method you can flash the image on the HDD without having to copy anything.

HOW DO I RE-FLASH THE I-BOX2, Fully power the receiver down via the rocker switch at the rear of the receiver. Insert the USB stick containing the xp1000 folder and all contents into the rear USB port on the receiver. Power the receiver on from the rear rocker switch. Wait for both the LED's on the front display to appear RED, once you see this you must press the CH+ located on the front of the receiver to initiate the flashing process. Wait for the image to flash, during this time the Standby button LED will appear purple to indicate that the image is being flashed. When the flashing process has completed the receiver will automatically reboot.

HOW DO I RE-FLASH THE ZGEMMA, Fully power the receiver down via the push-switch at the rear of the receiver. Insert the USB stick containing the zgemma folder and all contents correctly extracted into the rear USB port on the receiver. Power the receiver on from the rear push-switch. Wait for USB to appear on the front screen, once you see this you must press the power button on the front of the receiver to initiate the flashing process. Wait for the image to flash. When the flashing process has completed the receiver will automatically reboot. If USB does not appear on the front screen then either the USB is not good or you do not have the correct file structure on the USB.

WHERE CAN I GET FIRMWARE UPDATES, There are firmwares on the Bigmaq toolbar and many forum downloads. Be very careful if updating a Chinese box as you can brick it if using the wrong firmware. Generally, if you don't need to update, then don't.

MY LINUX BOX IS STUCK ON STARTING, Firstly, check that it really is "STUCK" most are not. That screen is displayed until something is available to replace it. So, if you are on a non-working or non-existent channel, there is nothing to replace it! See if the box responds to the remote and try to select channels like BBC1, BBC2 etc. If you can use the remote but there are no channels stored, then manually use the Autobouquetsmaker scanner as detailed previously. If you have tried to do a software update, that can cause corruption that really can get the box to "Stick on Starting". If you have done that, then you will need to reflash an image backup.

NEW SKYBOX REMOTE DOESN'T WORK, these have a poor battery compartment and the +ve terminal of the battery often doesn't reach the contact. Duracell batteries especially usually do not fit. You may have to try several different sets of batteries.

I THINK MY BOX IS FAULTY, First thing is to e-mail me with the details of exactly what is happening and what you have done but please read next item. 75% of returned units have no hardware fault. I will try and talk you through various procedures to get you working again. If it gets to the stage where a return is necessary, then do not send the remote, PSU and cables unless specifically requested. It's not always possible to keep ancillaries allocated to a customer and it can increase the postage costs of returns too. Firmware flashing or updates are chargeable but can easily be done yourself.

CAN I GET 24/7 INSTANT IT TECH SUPPORT, Sorry, no - that's just not possible. I do flash and setup all boxes to get you going but really can't then follow up and spoon feed every little thing. The Linux boxes are like a computer, there are many apps and plugins that can be loaded and many settings that can be changed making them not boot. It does not mean that the box is faulty. I do try and help as much as possible but many of the things I get asked have already been answered in these FAQ's or are easily found with a simple Google search. Corrupt settings on a Linux box can be cured with a full backup re-flash. I do keep some backups and can create some but it's best to create your own, every image has an app to create a backup. If I have sent you a backup, keep it safe, please don't come back to me later for another as I only have limited storage and will have deleted it. Boxes supplied with a HDD will have a full image backup on the HDD

SOME TIPS FOR LINUX BASED BOXES:

Firstly, don't do the online updates unless you know what you are doing and you know the box will support it. Some boxes have patched drivers and loading the online updates may brick the box. Like with any Satellite box, do not do a factory reset or restore factory settings - you will lose everything.

Autobouquets will sort channels like on a Sky+HD or V+HD box so you can enter the channel number direct, go up/down 1 channel at a time with the channel up/down button or press the main up/down buttons to show a list of favourite channels in the current group and pressing blue to show a list of favourite groups. If in the EPG for a particular favourite group, pressing the < or > will move to the next group.

Channel list and EPG is updated overnight, so leave the box powered up or it can miss an update. Press and hold the EPG button to see a list of available guides. With ViX images, a short press of the EPG button will give you their standard EPG display.

If you have a HDD or SD fitted, then you can set a timer recording from most EPG displays or start recording manually with the Rec button. To play a recording press the file button (usually between the Menu & Audio buttons).

It's good practice and strongly recommended to regularly take and keep a full image backup in case you get corrupted firmware. I usually do a backup of all boxes with a HDD or SD card, copy this to your PC and keep it safe. I don't always have image backups available. It's really easy, just go to the ViX menu, Image-Manager and create a new backup.

More details about specific images can be found on their respective support forums. They may not answer questions about use of Chinese boxes if you have one, but searching through may help with specific information or problems.

There is a Generic ViX Instruction manual available from their site and from the Tutorial link below

PLi - http://openpli.org/forums/
ViX - http://www.world-of-satellite.com/forum.php
Blackhole - http://www.vuplus-community.net/board/

 

Bigmaq Files Downloads                             Tutorials

Latest Skybox Channel list Here

Note:

Northern Ireland, highland & island Delivery is now subject to a small extra Postage charge due to the recent huge increase in delivery prices. 

 

IMPORTANT:

If using Paypal, please use a confirmed address, orders from un-confirmed addresses will need to be verified and may be delayed or rejected. 

IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO ENSURE YOU ARE COMPLYING WITH UK AND EU LAW. IT IS ILLEGAL TO RECEIVE SUBSCRIPTION-BASED TELEVISION, AIRTIME OR INTERNET SERVICE WITHOUT PAYING FOR IT. IT MAY BE ILLEGAL TO CONNECT THIS ITEM TO EQUIPMENT THAT YOU DO NOT OWN, WITHOUT THE EQUIPMENT OWNERS' PRIOR CONSENT. BUYING FROM THIS SITE MEANS YOU AGREE TO, AND UNDERSTAND THESE TERMS. I DO NOT SELL ANY EQUIPMENT THAT BELONGS TO ANY CABLE COMPANY, I WILL NOT SUPPORT NOR CONDONE ANY THEFT OF SERVICE. I DO NOT GUARANTEE THE AVAILABILITY OF PATCHED FIRMWARE

CONFIRMED & PAID ORDERS  ARE USUALLY DISPATCHED THE NEXT WORKING DAY AND DELIVERY IS USUALLY BY PARCELFORCE, DHL, UPS or ROYAL MAIL. WE WILL ENDEAVOUR TO SHIP ORDERS RECEIVED BEFORE 1pm THE SAME WORKING DAY, HOWEVER THIS CANNOT ALWAYS BE ARRANGED ESPECIALLY DURING BUSY PERIODS.

QUOTED DELIVERY TIMES ARE TYPICAL AND NOT GUARANTEED, YOUR ORDER CONFIRMS ACCEPTANCE OF THE POLICY HERE.