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FiOS TV: Getting Started
With Interactive Media Guide 1.9
Justin @ Verizon Forums
Last Update: February 11, 2012
FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
Purpose of This Document.............................................................................................................. 3
What’s New in 1.9 .......................................................................................................................... 4
How Do You Know What Level of the IMG You Have? .............................................................. 5
STBs Supported by 1.9 ................................................................................................................... 6
Initial Setup ..................................................................................................................................... 7
Additional Settings.......................................................................................................................... 8
The New Guide ............................................................................................................................. 13
Exploiting FiOS TV Favorites ...................................................................................................... 17
Recording Programs on the DVR ................................................................................................. 21
Common Verizon FiOS Remote Controls .................................................................................... 24
Using the Verizon Remote Control............................................................................................... 25
With the Guide .......................................................................................................................... 25
For Watching Live TV .............................................................................................................. 26
For Controlling the DVR .......................................................................................................... 27
Using Remote DVR from Smart Phone or Tablet(?) .................................................................... 28
Using Video on Demand............................................................................................................... 29
Some Additional Hints and Tips for FiOS TV ............................................................................. 30
A Few Final Comments ................................................................................................................ 35
Glossary ........................................................................................................................................ 36
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
Purpose of This Document
Over the six years plus that FiOS TV has been available there have been many changes in the
software used to control the set top boxes. With the new 1.9 release of the Interactive Media
Guide (IMG), many new capabilities have been introduced. This document is my attempt to
provide hopefully useful advice on customizing and using the new release. It is intended for both
new FiOS TV customers as well as existing customers who have gotten the upgrade from the 1.8
release to the 1.9 release. Information and suggestions about setting up and using existing
features and options in 1.8 as well as the new capabilities in 1.9 are included.
Please, when you read this, remember:
It is not a complete tutorial on FiOS TV. If you are new to FiOS TV, I suggest you initially
focus on the following sections: Initial Setup, The New Guide, and Exploiting FiOS TV
Favorites. Once you are more comfortable with how the software works, you might want to
explore other areas. And if you experience difficulties with some functions, you might find
some help in the Some Additional Hints and Tips for FiOS TV section.
Some of it (maybe a lot) is my opinion
I am located in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area (DAC 1 VHO 1), so some things may be local for
me and different for you.
It is not an official document from Verizon.
I have only Motorola HD boxes, one QIP7232 and two QIP7100-P2s, so all of the
recommended settings assume Motorola HD STBs. But I do have SD TVs attached to the
two QIP7100-P2 STBs.
Some of the results of key presses, etc., may depend on settings that I have made, so if you
choose different settings what you see may be different.
If any of you see what you think are errors, or have suggestions for additional topics, please do
let me know via a Private Message (PM) on the Verizon Forums.
Note: You will find a number of acronyms in this document. If you don’t know what they mean,
there is a Glossary at the end.
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
What’s New in 1.9
Here is a partial list of the new capabilities included in 1.9 (this list is from Joe Ambeault’s
Release Notes on the Verizon at Home blog:
New look and feel with higher resolution graphics and smooth animations
Re-design of search and better integration throughout the guide
Expansion of guide data to include complete cast information and air date
New Channel Guide view providing another option for navigating live TV content
Recommendations for live TV content
Ability to select the Widgets that are displayed in the carousel
More parental control tools and a configuration wizard
Overhaul of Message Center
Improved 3DTV support
Support for Descriptive Video Service, native pass through, 1080p, and MP3 and MPEG4 decoding on select devices.
A long list of DVR and multi-room DVR enhancements
Even more ways to customize the guide to your personal preferences
Not all of these topics will be covered here.
Two DVR functions not specifically listed above that are really big steps forward:
Multi-Room feature (not new but enhanced): You can now not only view programs
recorded on a DVR from any STB, you can also schedule and delete recordings from the
Multi-Hub feature (new): If you have multiple DVRs, each DVR can see the other(s),
and view each other’s content. You can also view, schedule, and delete recordings on any
DVR in the home from any non-DVR STB. Note: One current limitation is the DVRs
cannot currently add or delete content from each other, so from one DVR you cannot
schedule or delete recordings on another DVR.
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
How Do You Know What Level of the IMG You Have?
Using the FiOS TV remote control:
Menu  Settings  System Information  Release 1.9 Build Number 10.95
This is the current information for 1.9 on a QIP7232 DVR; it may display differently on other
The current information for 1.9 on a Cisco STB is Build 12.40.
When Verizon delivers a new level of the IMG you cannot force the system to install it, your
STBs will automatically install it when Verizon makes it available in your area.
Verizon ran a Beta test for 1.9. They may offer Beta tests for future levels of the IMG. I hope
they do as I think that is an excellent way to incorporate actual customer experience before all
customers see the product.
As I understand it, Verizon generally distributes new STB software to one DAC at a time (each
DAC generally includes several VHOs). With 1.9, the plan was to first update a few customers in
a selected DAC using what is called a “slow spin.” If no major problems surfaced, then the
following week Verizon would distribute a “fast spin” to all of the STBs in that DAC. Then there
was a planned delay of a few weeks to determine that all is okay and the workload on the support
centers is acceptable. Then a new DAC received 1.9 using the same technique. Unfortunately
several unexpected and unrelated issues arose that slowed the distribution of 1.9; hopefully that
will not happen with the next release.
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
STBs Supported by 1.9
High Definition DVRs:
Motorola: QIP7232-P2, QIP7216, QIP6416*
Cisco: CHS 435
High Definition non-DVR STBs:
Motorola: QIP7100-P2, QIP7100-P1, QIP6200
Cisco: CHS 335
Standard Definition STBs:
Motorola: QIP2500-P3**
Not Supported:
Motorola: QIP2500-P1, QIP2500-P2, DCT-700
* Limited support for QIP6416 - no HD Guide, reportedly slow performance, possibly other
** Reportedly very slow performance
Keep in mind that all HD DVRs and STBs will work with SD TVs, so if you have a QIP2500
box you can replace it and continue to use the same SD TV. One advantage is that you can view
HD-only channels (such as HDNet and HDNet Movies), HD recordings, and HD VOD programs
on the SD TV. And if you are not aware of it, Verizon does offer some package “deals” for
customers with a Multi-Room DVR and two or more HD STBs that may minimize the upgrade
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
Initial Setup
Note: I think a number of the options available are different between the HD boxes and the SD
boxes; since I don’t have any SD boxes I have no way to verify what options are available on
Probably the most important settings in the HD STB are the type of TV that is attached, the
Video Format you want to use, and the Graphic Settings which control how the Guide and Menu
are displayed, so I am covering them here first.
Menu  Settings  Video Settings  setting  option
Video Format
480i 4:3 – Use for all SD TVs
720p 16:9 – Optional setting for an HD TV
1080i 16:9 – Recommended for an HD TV (this is the setting I prefer and use)
Suggestion: For an HD TV, try both 1080i and 720p and see which looks better
on your TV.
TV Type
16:9 – Use this option for all HD TVs
4:3 LETTERBOX – This is the option I use for my SD TVs on HD STBs (I did
try the alternative 4:3 PAN SCAN option, it did not look good to me)
Graphic Settings
HD: Use this if an HD TV is attached to the STB.
SD: Use this setting if an SD TV is attached to the STB. Note: This setting
appears to me to be very important. In my experience the readability of the
Guide and Menu is dramatically improved on an SD TV with this setting.
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Additional Settings
Below are some key settings in the Menu that I think you should review and decide how you
want the IMG to work. I am not covering all settings and options, just the ones I think are
particularly important or new; I highly recommend that you take the time to look through the
entire Menu on your set top box, you may find some great capability you didn’t know existed.
Menu  Settings  setting  option
Accessibility: You can now set a number of values for Closed Captions directly in the Menu.
Previously these settings were hidden and only accessible using a Power-Off - OK - Menu
Volume Control: Fixed or Variable. Allows you to control the volume through the STB
or through the TV. I prefer to control the volume through the TV, so I set Volume
Control to Fixed and then set the volume control for the STB to the maximum (see
I prefer to adjust the volume using the TV because I occasionally connect the TV to an
antenna and if I have the TV volume set to maximum the sound is deafening.
If you use your smart phone to control the DVR you will want the phone to be able to
control the volume so you should use the Variable setting.
Set-Top Box Volume: Sets the default volume on the STB. If you used Fixed for
Volume Control then you should adjust the STB volume to the maximum here.
Caller ID: If you have Caller ID service on your phone and want that information displayed on
the TV, you can enable it on each STB, set Alert Display to Enable.
Skip: 10 seconds, 30 seconds, 1 minute, or 5 minutes. I prefer to skip forward 30
seconds at a time, this way 4 or 6 quick button presses get me past most commercials, but
I can still advance shorter amounts if needed.
Replay: 10 seconds, 30 seconds, or 1 minute. I prefer to skip backwards 10 seconds
because I rarely need to go back more than that, and if I do I can use multiple presses or
the rewind function.
Program Chaptering: Enable or Disable. This is a new function. It provides a very nice
way to quickly move forward or backward within a recording by providing thumbnails at
intervals throughout the recording. The actual time interval is variable, depending on the
length of the recording. I have seen the interval as low as 3 minutes for a 30 minute
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
recording and as high as 10 minutes for a three hour recording. You cannot set the
interval yourself.
Chaptering only works directly on the DVR, it does not work from an STB using the
multi-room feature.
Note: Verizon is apparently having difficulties in some areas getting the thumbnails to
consistently display. However, even when the thumbnails are not visible the chaptering
function itself still works and the time intervals are displayed, at least for me.
Use of the Program Chaptering feature is covered in the Using the DVR section below.
Multi-Room DVR Settings: You can give the DVR a meaningful name. There are a
number of provided names, unfortunately for me “Office” is not among them, so I had to
use the option to create my own name, which works just fine.
Default Series Options: This is not a new set of options, but if you plan to use your
DVR a lot you should take the time to go through all of the options and set them so you
get the recordings you want.
Favorite Channels: There are a number of settings here to set up and control the Favorites
capabilities of the STB.
I think everyone should take the time to set up at least one Favorites list. I know that some think
they should not need to do this, that somehow Verizon should automatically know what channels
they want to watch, but I feel that is unrealistic. There are so many channels available in each
package, and even if you use the new Subscribed option to eliminate the channels not included in
your package, there are probably still many channels that you will never watch, and it is pointless
and annoying to see those channels when surfing, especially now that Verizon has started
imbedding VOD channels throughout the channel list (really unfriendly for customers). Just my
opinion of course….
One thing I think is missing is the ability to save and restore Favorites definitions, and to port
them to other STBs; hopefully that will come in the future. But for now, if you want to use
Favorites on multiple STBs, they must be set up on each STB separately.
There is much more discussion of setting up and using Favorites in the Exploiting FiOS TV
Favorites section later.
FiOS TV Remote DVR: You can enable smart-phone and web access to your DVR here. Note:
both of these options require you to first set up a Parental Control pin, see Parental Controls
Mobile Phone Access: There are a couple of Verizon apps available for a wide selection
of smart-phones: FiOS Mobile Remote and Verizon FiOS DVR. To use either app, your
phone must be activated here by entering the phone number of the smart-phone.
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FiOS Mobile Remote: Allows you to use your smart-phone as a remote control
device for the DVR in place of using the real remote control. You can do pretty
much anything with this app that you can do with the real remote. One advantage
to using this app is that the smart-phone does not need to be aimed at the DVR
because it is using your home wireless network to access the DVR. Note: If you
have Set-Top Box Volume in Audio set to Fixed my experience is this app will
not control the volume because it cannot interact with the TV itself, only the
Verizon FiOS DVR: Allows you to access the DVR and view/set your Favorites,
view the Guide, record programs, delete recordings, etc. This app displays the
functions directly on the smart-phone, not the TV itself, and is similar in function
to the web-based application.
Web Access: Allows you to access your DVR from your web browser. You can view TV
schedules, schedule and delete recordings, see what is currently recorded, etc.
Parental Controls: You can set up a Pin and define the kinds of material that can be viewed,
when it can be viewed, who can purchase programs, etc. This setting must be activated first if
you wish to use the Remote DVR capabilities even if you do not need the other capabilities.
Set-Top Box: Gives you control over what you see on the front of the STB if it has a display. I
prefer to have my DVR display the clock and not use the screen saver.
Television: Here you can set your preferred format for the Guide and several other options.
Preferred Guide: Full Guide, Half Screen Guide, Mini Guide, or Channel Guide. I
prefer Full Guide.
Secondary Guide Preference: Which format of the Guide you want to see if you hit the
Guide button a second time. I prefer Channel Guide. Note: Chanel Guide displays the
schedule for a single channel vertically, with a horizontal list of adjacent channels at the
top of the screen so you can easily move left or right in the channel list to select another
single channel to view.
Guide View: Controls how the Guide is displayed.
Classic View: Bigger picture of current channel in upper left corner of the screen,
data for fewer channels displayed.
Standard View: Smaller picture in upper left corner, data for more channels
displayed. I prefer this option.
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Interactive TV, Modes, and Recommendations: As far as I can tell, these options
interrupt your viewing when you use the Guide and I see no value in any of them. I have
them all disabled or turned off.
Guide Highlight:
Fixed Focus: When moving forward or backward time-wise, all visible channels
are shifted. I prefer this option.
Flexible Focus: When moving forward or backward time -wise, only the focused
channel is shifted.
Last Viewed Guide State: I have this enabled but I really do not see any
difference when it is enabled or disabled (ie, I really don’t see what it does). Other
users have reported they need to have this enabled to retain their Favorites setting
in the Guide when they exit the Guide and then return, but that is not my
3D TV: Allows you to specify whether the TV attached to the HD STB is 3D capable.
Video Settings: Allows you to set a variety of options for how you want the STB to work with
your TV. I covered Video Format, TV Type, and Graphic Settings earlier in this document, so
I will only cover a few of the other options here.
SD Override: When you are using an HDMI or component connection between the HD
STB and an HD TV, this option controls how SD channels are displayed. Depending on
the setting you choose and whether you are switching between an HD and SD channel,
the STB may have to change the current resolution being used with the TV prior to
switching to the new channel, causing a noticeable delay in changing channels when
using an HDMI connection.
Off: The STB leaves the resolution at whatever you have the Video Format set to
(720p or 1080i). Generally displays a decent SD picture, SD channels are
displayed letterboxed in their original 4:3 format (black bars on the left and right
sides of the picture). There is no delay when switching between HD and SD
channels using an HDMI connection. This is the setting I much prefer since I
use an HDMI connection.
480i: The STB sets the resolution to 480i before switching to an SD channel. Not
recommended. With this setting I experience a big delay when switching
between HD and SD channels using an HDMI connection.
480p: The STB sets the resolution to 480p before switching to an SD channel.
Not recommended. With this setting I experience a big delay when switching
between HD and SD channels using an HDMI connection.
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Stretch: The STB leaves the resolution at whatever you have the Video Format
set to (720p or 1080i). SD channels are displayed full screen. Picture quality is
usually somewhat degraded. With this setting I experience a big delay when
switching between HD and SD channels using an HDMI connection.
Video Sharpness: Allows you to set the sharpness of the displayed SD picture. It offers a
range from 1 (softer) to 5 (sharper). The default is 3. I am using 5 based on the
recommendation of a Verizon Forums user and it did seem to improve the SD picture
slightly over the default .
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The New Guide
With 1.9 the Guide offers many new features. Additional display options for the Guide include:
New option to jump forward two hours at a time (great enhancement)
2 ½ hours displayed when using an HD TV
An option to go directly to Search from the Guide
Brighter, more modern appearance (some people do not like the new colors and format, I
very much like them)
A new Subscribed option to include only the channels included in whatever package you
have, thus reducing the number of channels you see when scrolling through the Guide (I do
not use this option because it still includes many channels I have no interest in, but some
people apparently like it. In my opinion using Favorites list(s) is a far better solution)
Following are some pictures of various views of the new Guide (Note: I am a lousy photographer
and I don’t have any sophisticated photo editing tools, plus my digital camera is very old, so
please cut me some slack):
Full Guide – Standard View on HDTV:
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Full Guide – Classic View on HDTV:
Full Guide on SDTV connected to HD STB:
Note: This picture is from a 10+ year old tube-type TV and actually looks worse here than the
image on the TV, I guess because of the screen refresh rate and my low resolution digital
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Channel Guide on HDTV:
Half Screen Guide on HDTV:
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
Mini Guide on HDTV:
Guide Legend on HDTV:
I find the new Guide format to be very readable and a big improvement over the Guide in 1.8.
Other people’s opinions vary.
After looking at these different Guide options, you may want to go back and change which guide
format is set for the Default Guide setting:
Menu ==> Settings ==> Television ==> Default Guide  option
The options are: Full Guide, Half Screen Guide, Mini Guide, or Channel Guide
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Exploiting FiOS TV Favorites
When Verizon introduced the original Interactive Media Guide (IMG) to replace the Interactive
Programming Guide (IPG), many people, including me, were disappointed that it was no longer
possible to remove channels from the Guide to create a customized list of channels to view when
using the Guide button on the remote. Verizon did add the ability to define a Favorites list, but
you had to use the Favorites button to access that list; hitting the Guide button always displayed
the complete list of channels, including all the ones you had no interest in.
Starting with the 1.6 level of the IMG, you could create up to two Favorites lists, and you could
set up the remote so that the Guide button will display one of the Favorites lists instead of the
complete guide (something that I think has been missed by a lot of users). You could also easily
change to whatever list you wanted whenever you wanted – big steps forward. And along the
way Verizon has added the ability to manage your Favorites via the web (for a DVR only).
1.9 continues with the Favorites concept, with some new features thrown in.
Note: If you have multiple STBs and want to use Favorites on each, you will need to create the
list individually on each STB. Hopefully in the future Verizon will provide some facility to
transfer Favorites between STBs.
Getting Started
It really is very easy to set up one or two Favorites lists and control which key on the remote
does what:
1) Create a Favorites list (and create a second one if you want, so that you have separate
channel lists for him/her, parents/kids, sports/movies, normal use/free previews, etc., really
whatever division you want). There are multiple ways to create your initial list, and there are
multiple ways to maintain the list once it has been created.
2) Set up how you want the Guide and Favorites keys on the remote to work.
3) Enjoy.
Step 1: Create a Favorites List
The first step is to create at least one Favorites list, either Favorites 1 or Favorites 2.
Note: you can choose to create (and then manage if you want) your Favorites lists directly on a
DVR or via the web. I find the web process too slow and cumbersome; I much prefer to do my
work directly on the DVR. But you should probably try both methods to see which you prefer.
For non-DVR STBs, the setup must be done directly on the STB, there is no web interface.
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On the STB:
Menu ==> Settings ==> Favorite Channels ==> Favorites 1 ==> Add All Channels
Menu ==> Settings ==> Favorite Channels ==> Favorites 1 ==> Add or Remove Channels
You can choose to simply add all of the channels immediately and remove unwanted channels
from the list later, you can go through the entire list of channels right at the beginning adding
only the ones you want (you can easily modify the list at any time), or you can even create a list
of just one or a few channels and add more later, your choice. And if none of these choices
appeal, you can just not bother to create a Favorites list at all and dynamically begin creating one
later using the Options button on the remote.
I highly recommend that you invest the time up front to go through the Add or Remove
Channels right up front, make some (educated) guesses on which channels you want in the list,
and make sure you don’t include those you know you have no interest in. Doing this up front will
make your initial experience with FiOS TV much more enjoyable, and make later customizations
of the list much easier.
If you chose to use Add All Channels, then I recommend you at least go through immediately
and remove those you know you do not subscribe to or want in the list. To do this, after using
Add All Channels, go to Add or Remove Channels, find a channel you want to remove, and
press the OK button, the little heart will disappear. Repeat this for each channel you want to
If you chose to use Add or Remove Channels, once you are positioned at the channel you want
to add to your favorites list, just press the OK button and a little heart will appear (if you make a
mistake or change your mind, press OK again to remove the channel from the list). Repeat this
for each channel you want to add.
Use the Up Arrow and Down Arrow buttons to move through the channel list one channel at a
time as you make your selections.
There are some keys you can use to make this process easier and faster:
Use the Channel + and Channel - buttons to move forward or backward in the list about 12
channels at a time.
Press any combination of number buttons to jump forward or backward from your current
position in the list. Some examples:
Press 0 to get to the top of the channel list
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Press 500 to go to the first HD channel in the list (in my case, it will actually jump to 504,
my first channel after the non-existent channel 500)
Press 9999 to go to the bottom of the list
Step 2: Set up how you want the Guide and Favorites buttons to work
This step must be done from the remote directly on the STB.
Two buttons on the remote control work together to display the Program Guide: the Guide
button and the Favorites button. There are two settings in the Menu to control how these buttons
work together: Favorites Button and Flip by Favorites.
Menu ==> Settings ==> Favorite Channels ==> Favorites Button  option
The Favorites Button options control what you see when you hit the Favorites button on the
remote control:
Show Favorite Listings: When you hit the Favorites button, you see only your
Favorites 1 (or 2 if it exists) list of channels in the Guide, and when you hit the Guide
button you always see the full list of all channels. This is the default setup when you
receive your FiOS TV equipment, with both favorites lists empty.
Toggle Flip by Favorites: When you hit the Favorites button you do not see a Guide
with your Favorites listed; instead, you see a small display in the lower right part of the
screen showing what list will be displayed when you hit the Guide button: one of your
Favorites or the full Guide. Repeatedly hitting the Favorites button will rotate through the
options: Favorite 1 (if the list exists), Favorite 2 (if the list exists), and All Channels, back
to Favorite 1, etc.
Menu ==> Settings ==> Favorite Channels ==> Flip by Favorites  option
The Flip by Favorites option determines which list is displayed by default when you press the
Favorites button:
All Channels
Favorites 1
Favorites 2
My preference is to set Favorites Button to Toggle Flip by Favorites and set Flip by Favorites
to Favorites 1; this way, hitting the Guide button causes my Favorites 1 list to appear, and
hitting the Favorites button allows me to quickly change which list is displayed in the Guide.
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The net effect of the above is that by default I see my favorites when I hit the Guide button, but I
can easily change that to all channels or Favorites 2 at any time by hitting the Favorites button
(Note: if you change which list is displayed and then exit the Guide, the next time you hit the
Guide button it will display the list you were last viewing).
I encourage you to try it with various settings and see which technique you prefer.
Step 3: Enjoy
If you set yours up like mine, you can now use the Guide button to view your preferred favorites
list, but easily switch to the other favorite list or the full Guide just by hitting the Favorites
button two or three times. You can always tell which version of the Guide you are watching, it
will be displayed in the lower right corner of the guide.
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Recording Programs on the DVR
Scheduling Recordings
There are a variety of ways to record a program:
From the Guide
From the Menu
While watching a program live
From Search
From a computer via the internet
From a smart phone or other remote device
Scheduling a Recording from the Guide
While focused on the program you want to record:
1. Press the REC button once to record that episode.
2. Press the REC button again if you want to record the series or cancel a previously scheduled
recording. When you choose this option you will be given options to:
Cancel the Recording
Record Series
Record Series with Options. The options include adjusting the start and end times,
whether to record first run or all programs, etc.
Scheduling a Recording from the Menu
1. Press Menu.
2. Scroll up to DVR and press the Right Arrow (OK also works).
3. Scroll up to Create Recording and press the Right Arrow.
4. Choose how you want to set the recording to be done: Search, Guide, or Manual.
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Manual allows you to schedule a recording without forcing you to choose a “program”;
instead, you pick the channel and you pick the start and end times without depending on any
entry in the Guide or the program being found in a search.
Scheduling a Recording While Watching a Program Live
Press REC. Very similar to scheduling a recording using the Guide, but you will be offered a
slightly different set of options if you press REC a second time.
Scheduling a Recording from Search
If you press the B button you will be taken to the Search menu. Once you find the program you
want to record, pressing OK will present a number of options for recording, etc.
Scheduling a Recording from a Computer via the Internet
You can schedule recordings using your computer.
Log into My Verizon in your browser.
Mouse over FiOS TV
Click on TV Listings in the pull-down
Find the program you want to record and click on it. You will then be given the opportunity
to Record the program, see more details, or find possible future airings of the program.
You can filter the channels shown by selecting HD Only, for example, and if you have a
Favorites list defined you can use that.
Scheduling a Recording from a Smart Phone or Other Remote Device
(to be completed or deleted????)
Recording Options
There are several Menu options you can set that affect how recordings are made and how they
are saved:
Menu  DVR  Settings  Default Series Options
For instance, you can define how many recordings to keep, whether to record new episodes only
or all episodes, whether recordings are to be kept until you specifically delete them, etc.
You can also reach Default Series Options from Settings directly under Menu and from the DVR
button on the remote.
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Chaptering (works only on the DVR)
Chaptering is one of the nice new functions in 1.9. For recorded programs it provides thumbnails
so you can easily move through a recording quickly to find the spot you want.
While watching the recorded program, press the Up Arrow to see the thumbnails. Use the Right
and Left Arrow buttons to move quickly through the thumbnails until you reach the spot you
want. Use the Down Arrow to resume viewing the recording at the desired spot.
Two things are normally shown: a thumbnail picture extracted from the recording, and a time,
which is the number of minutes:seconds into the recording this thumbnail represents.
Unfortunately the picture does not always display, but the times always seem to, so you can at
least use the time to find your desired place in the recording.
You must activate Chaptering for it to work:
Menu  DVR  Settings  Program Chaptering
Menu  Settings  DVR  Program Chaptering
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Common Verizon FiOS Remote Controls
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Using the Verizon Remote Control
With the Guide
Using the Full Guide
Up Arrow
Down Arrow
Right Arrow
Left Arrow
Ch + (page)
Ch – (page)
Start the Full Guide. Pressing it a second time displays the Channel Guide.
Move to next lower numbered channel.
Move to next higher numbered channel.
Move the Guide forward 30 minutes.
Move the Guide backward 30 minutes. Unfortunately you cannot go back any
further than the current day and time.
Move the channel currently displayed at the top to the bottom of the Guide
Move the channel currently displayed at the bottom to the top of the Guide
Move the Guide forward two hours.
Move the Guide backward two hours. Unfortunately you cannot go back any
further than the current day and time.
Move the Guide forward one day.
Move the Guide backward one day. Unfortunately you cannot go back any
further than the current day and time.
Move the Guide immediately to the entered channel. Enter 1 to 4 digits. If the
channel number entered does not exist in the current Guide display it moves to
the next higher channel. 0 goes to the lowest channel. 9999 goes to the highest
channel. (appears to not work quite right when displaying All Channels)
See additional program information on the in-focus channel in the Guide.
Cycle through All Channels, Favorite 1, etc. Note that the operation of this
button is dependent on your Favorites settings and may not work this way.
View a selection list where you can change the list of channels displayed; for
example, change to a different favorites list, view the full guide, see only HD
channels, etc. Down near the bottom of the list is a Guide Legend which will
show you explanations for the various icons you might see (like the yellow
triangle with an exclamation point) as well as a color chart for the guide
(movies, series, kids, sports, etc.).
Go to the Search function.
DVR and any STB with Multi-Room feature activated. Set program to be
recorded. Press Record a second time to record a series.
End the Guide.
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For Watching Live TV
Note: While watching live TV on the DVR or on an STB if the Multi-Room feature of the DVR
is active, you can also use various buttons relating to recording programs and playing back
recordings. Using these buttons will be covered in the next section.
Watching Live TV
Return to live TV from any of the IMG screens.
Generally selects an option from one of the IMG screens displayed by
using one of the buttons described below.
View the Half Screen Guide. Press Exit to leave the half screen Guide.
Up Arrow
Down Arrow
Right Arrow
View the Mini-Guide, showing the current channel and the next three
programs on the same channel. Many of the buttons available in the Full
Guide will work for the Mini-guide. Press Exit to leave the mini-Guide.
Display TV Modes (if turned on in Settings) where you can make a
selection that will display only selected channels, like Movies or Sports.
Press Exit, OK, or Left Arrow to close Modes.
Cycle through All Channels and any Favorites lists defined (works this
way only if you have the settings as I have suggested).
View more information on the current channel. Hit Info again for possibly
more information (available for some programs but not all).
Opens the Live TV Options where you can add the current channel to one
of your favorites, delete the channel from a favorites, turn On or Off
Closed Captions, etc.
Switch to the last previously viewed channel.
Ch + (Page)
Scroll to the next higher channel number in the currently active Mode (All
Channels, Favorites 1, Favorites 2).
Ch – (Page)
Scroll to the next lower channel number in the currently active Mode (All
Channels, Favorites 1, Favorites 2).
# (Aspect)
* (CC)
With an HDMI connection (works with component? I don’t know) cycles
through the zoom of the picture in several stages: wider, wider still, higher
and widest, normal. Works on HD channels (and SD channels if SD
Override is set Off).
HD STB/DVR only. Change Closed Captions settings.
Start Widgets (also can use the Widgets button).
Go to the Search function.
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For Controlling the DVR
Note: The Next, Prev, Fwd, and Rew buttons also work while watching live TV on the DVR
as long as you have first gone backward toward the beginning of the program (ie, used the Prev
or Rew buttons).
Recording a Program, Watching a Recorded Program, Watching a
Live Program
Normally skips forward “n” seconds where “n” is defined in the Menu.
However, if recording has been paused, advance one frame at a time.
May be disabled on some programs.
Normally skips backward “n” seconds where “n” is defined in the Menu.
However, if recording has been paused, rewind one frame at a time. May
be disabled on some programs.
Normally Fast Forward. Repeated presses increase the speed. However, if
recording has been paused, forward in slow motion. May be disabled on
some programs.
Normally Rewind. Repeated presses increase the speed. However, if
recording has been paused, rewind in slow motion. May be disabled on
some programs.
Begin Recording. Pressing a second time will define a series recording.
Also works while viewing the Guide.
DVR only. Takes you to the live location in the current program. Useful if
you have rewound the live program and now want to get back to the
current position.
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Using Remote DVR from Smart Phone or Tablet(?)
(I think this topic might be appropriate, but I use Remote DVR only from My Verizon on the
web, so I have no experience to base any comments or suggestions on. If someone can provide
some information I will be happy to include it here, and credit them.)
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Using Video on Demand
VOD offers free and fee access to a large number of programs, including:
Free broadcast and cable channel TV programs from ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, FX, HDNet,
TBS, and others.
Movies for a fee.
Premium channels – free if you subscribe to that service.
A variety of other free content, include some movies.
You access VOD by pressing the On Demand button on the remote.
I rarely use VOD so I really have no advice regarding using the service.
(If someone has some suggestions for additional content here, hints and tips for using, things to
watch out for, etc., I will be happy to add it here, and credit them)
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Some Additional Hints and Tips for FiOS TV
(Any suggestions for other topics?)
Connections Between the STB and the TV
There are several different connection methods that can be used to connect your STB to your
TV. The installer will have made the connection, but he might not make the best connection
available, you may have some problems with the initial setup, or you may change your TV or
STB and need to re-do your own connections. So here are some simple suggestions.
HDMI or Component. HDMI is simpler because it is only one cable, but some TVs have
interface issues and may not work correctly with HDMI. If so, use Component + audio
cables. You should be able to get the same picture quality using either connection.
Any other connection will not provide an HD signal to the HD TV.
Component + audio if connection available on the TV, otherwise Composite + audio,
then S-Video + audio, then finally coax.
Don’t do it, not worth it, get an HD STB.
S-Video + audio if connection available on the TV, otherwise Composite + audio, then
finally coax.
Using an External Hard Drive on the DVR
The older Verizon DVRs, the QIP6416 and QIP 7216, have only 160 GB hard drives which is
inadequate for some people. The newer DVRs all have 500 GB hard drives, which may be fine
for most people. But if you need more space to store recordings you can buy and attach an
external hard drive.
If you buy an external hard drive to attach to your DVR, please be aware of the following:
An external hard drive cannot be attached to a QIP6416.
Verizon recommends specific Western Digital external hard drives:
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However, other drives can be used, although Verizon will not help if you experience
performance or compatibility issues.
You can find more information in the eSATA external hard drives section of the FiOS
Any drive must connect to the DVR using an eSATA connection (not USB).
The drive will be formatted when attached to the DVR (any data on the drive will be erased).
Recordings are encrypted; they cannot be accessed by attachment to a PC, for example.
When recording with an external hard drive attached, all recordings will be on the external
hard drive until it is full, then recording will switch to the internal hard drive in the DVR.
The hard drive is “married” to that particular DVR; it cannot be moved to another DVR
without being reformatted (and all recordings will be lost).
If your DVR breaks and must be replaced, or you decide to replace it to get a newer one, all
recordings on the external hard drive will be lost. Plus keep in mind that there is no facility
for copying any recordings from the internal hard drive either.
Multi-Room DVR and STBs No Longer See Each Other
Occasionally my Multi-Room DVR and the other STBs seem to lose each other, so when I am on
an STB and want to view, schedule, delete a recording, etc, I see an error message that the DVR
cannot be found. When this happens it can easily be fixed:
Menu  DVR  Refresh Devices
It runs very quickly and has always fixed this problem for me.
Native Pass Through and Sound Settings
Verizon offers an option to pass the TV signal directly to your TV without changing the
resolution. That is, if the channel you want to watch is broadcast at 720p and you have the
resolution set in your STB to 1080i, normally the STB will change the resolution of the signal to
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
1080i before sending it to the TV. If you want, you can change the STB setting so the original
resolution is passed directly to the TV and not changed by the STB.
Why might you want to use native pass through? Some people feel that the picture they see on
their TV is better if it is viewed at its “native” resolution, and they want the best possible picture.
Other people, like me, cannot see any difference. You might want to try setting this option to see
if it makes any difference for you. One caution: with some TVs, using this setting results in a
long transition time of maybe 3-4 seconds when changing channels (all channels when the
resolution is different, not just HD to SD or SD to HD). My Sony does experience that delay, and
I find it objectionable, and the improved picture quality, if any, was invisible to me.
If you use an HDMI connection between the Motorola STB and the TV, there are also sound
settings available in this menu that can possibly improve the sound performance you get.
Specifically, if you occasionally experience loss of sound, changing the sound setting here may
fix the problem.
Note: there are no settings in the Cisco STBs to control the audio setting. The Cisco
boxes can provide AC3 or LPCM digital audio on the HDMI output, but the audio may
default to AC3, for example, and there is no way to force the setting to LPCM like there
is with the Motorola STBs. The Cisco boxes automatically provide the proper HDMI
audio output required, either AC3 or LPCM, depending on data received from the TV
during the HDMI handshake, and may only have issues with certain TVs, such as some
Vizio TVs. If you experience audio problems using a Cisco STB, using component and
stereo cables is probably the best option.
Unfortunately the pass through and audio settings are not in the IMG Menu for Motorola STBs
(Pass through is for the Cisco STBs). Instead you must access the User Settings menu as
With the TV turned on:
1) Turn off the STB (if you have your remote set to turn on and off the TV and STB at the same
time you may need to do this on the STB itself).
2) On the remote quickly press OK, then Menu, and the User Settings menu will appear.
3) To set the STB for Native Pass Through, scroll down to the HDMI/YPbPr Output line. Press
OK to (slowly) scroll through the various output options: 1080i, 720p, 480p, and Native.
While Native is displayed, you can then scroll down and set the specific resolutions your TV
will accept.
4) To change the audio setting, scroll down to Additional HDMI settings and press OK. On this
menu there is an Audio Output setting; scroll up to it and press OK to scroll through the
various options: Auto, L-PCM, and Pass Through (for whatever it’s worth, Auto, which I
believe is the default, has always worked correctly for me). When you are finished, scroll
down to Return to Main Page and press OK.
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5) Once all options have been set the way you want, press the Power button to save your
6) Press the Power button to turn the STB on to resume normal operation.
There are other settings available in the User Settings menu, but most or all can be set much
more conveniently using the IMG.
Caller ID on TV
I have had Caller ID on TV for more than two years. I have found it to be very reliable, but it has
stopped working maybe 4 or 5 times in that time. Other people seem to have it fail much more
frequently, so maybe the procedure I have used will help some of you get it working again.
1) Go into the Menu on the STB and turn Caller ID off. Do this for all STBs where Caller ID is
not working.
2) Reboot your router.
3) Reboot the STBs, one at a time.
4) Go into the Menu on each STB and turn Caller ID on.
5) Wait maybe 25-20 minutes and see if it is working. If so, good. If not, I have no other
Troubleshooting Options
If your STB is not operating correctly, there are several things you can try that might fix the
In my experience, the very first thing to try is to reboot the STB by removing the electrical
power from the STB for 15-20 seconds. Just pull the power cord out, turn off the surge protector,
whatever is convenient. Then plug it back in and see if the problem is gone; amazingly, it
frequently is.
The next step is to try the built-in tools. Verizon STBs have two problem determination and
resolution tools included in the IMG that may help if you are experiencing problems receiving a
clear picture on some or all channels, slow channel changing or Guide operation, invalid
available disk space calculations, etc. These tools are available under the Customer Support
option of the IMG Menu.
In-Home Agent:
This tool contains a variety of options, such as:
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
Reboot STB
Set Top Box Auto Correction
Network Diagnostics
Auto-fix Common DVR Issues
plus others. If you are having connection issues, picture quality issues, missing channels,
etc, running one or more of these tools may fix your problem.
Self Diagnostics:
This tool will test various STB connectivity conditions and your service options and
provide a report. If Failed is reported anywhere you have an issue that needs to be
For example, here is what I see on my DVR:
(picture here)
Beyond the two tools above, there is also a very detailed display of information about the
operation of the STB from the hardware Diagnostics menu. To access this menu on the Motorola
With the TV and STB turned on:
1) Turn off the STB (if you have your remote set to turn on and off the TV and STB at the same
time you may need to do this on the STB itself).
2) On the remote quickly press OK, then OK again, and the Diagnostics menu will appear.
I believe the procedure is the same on the other Motorola STBs. For Cisco STBs the procedure to
access the Diagnostics menu is to press Left Arrow and OK at the same time.
The menu contains a series of “dxx” entries, each of which will display some detailed
information about the status or operation of the STB. Entries d03 and d04 display some
particularly useful information on the signal strength and errors detected on the specific channel
the STB was tuned to at the time the Diagnostics menu was invoked.
To exit the Diagnostics menu scroll down to the E entry and press OK on the remote. You will
then need to turn the STB back on to resume normal operation.
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A Few Final Comments
I hope you have found this document useful. It is certainly not a complete explanation of all of
the capabilities of FiOS TV. I encourage you to explore the various settings and options so you
get maximum benefit and enjoyment from the service.
If you are interested in more information on FiOS TV, here are some possible sources:
Channel 131 on your TV shows short videos on using various features.
What’s New in the STB Menu: Menu  Customer Support  What’s New. Brief
highlights of various new features in 1.9.
FiOS TV Frequently Asked Questions:
Verizon Forums:
DSLReports Forums:
(I need more sources, anybody have any suggestions?)
And finally, I would like to give credit to a number of people at the Verizon Forums who have
helped me with this document:
prisaz – encouragement, suggestions for topics, info on the Cisco STBs
AnnJ – encouragement, extensive proof-reading, suggestions for topics
The numerous people who provided feedback on my original Exploiting FiOS TV Favorites
document from several years ago, which was the starting point for this document.
Thanks to all for their help.
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(looking for suggestions for additional entries)
BPON: Broadband Passive Optical Network. Capable of 622 Mbps download and 155 Mbps
upload. Each BPON fiber is split using an optical splitter to serve 16 or 32 users.
DAC: A DAC is a grouping of VHOs that share a Digital Addressable Controller.
Pomona, CA
Palm Springs, CA
Silver Spring, MD
Richmond, VA
Norfolk, VA
Queens, NY
Burlington, MA
Providence, RI
Temple Terrace, FL
Pittsburgh, PA
Freehold, NJ
Philadelphia, PA
Harrisburg, PA
Buffalo, NY
Syracuse, NY
Albany, NY
DVR: Digital Video Recorder. Currently Verizon uses the QIP7232, CHS 435, QIP7216, and
QIP6416 DVRs.
FiOS: Verizon’s implementation of fiber to the home. FiOS = Fiber Optic Service.
GPON: Gigabit Passive Optical Network. Capable of 2.4 Gbps download speed and 1.2 Gbps
upload speed. Each GPON fiber is split to serve 16 or typically 32 users.
HD: High Definition. Display resolutions of 1,280×720 pixels (720p) or 1,920×1,080 pixels
(1080i/1080p). The picture is normally displayed in a 16:9 format.
HDMI: High Definition Media Interface. An audio/video interface for transmitting encrypted
uncompressed digital data. HDMI supports, on a single cable, any uncompressed TV or PC video
format, including standard, enhanced, high definition and 3D video signals; up to 8 channels of
compressed or uncompressed digital audio; a Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) connection;
and an Ethernet data connection.
HDTV: High Definition Television.
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FiOS TV: Getting Started With IMG 1.9
IMG: Interactive Media Guide. The Verizon software that controls the STB.
Pixel: Picture Element. The smallest addressable screen element. It is the smallest unit of a
picture that can be represented or controlled.
SD: Standard Definition. Display resolution at something lower than a High Definition
resolution (seriously, there are multiple Standard Definition formats). The picture is normally
displayed in a 4:3 format.
SDTV: Standard Definition Television.
STB: Set Top Box. A generic term referring to both DVR and non-DVR boxes.
VHO: Video Hub Office. A location where from which Verizon distributes the video signals to
the local Central Office and ultimately to the customer. Local channels are inserted into the data
streams at the VHO.
VOD: Video on Demand.
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