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SKY+ FAQ

Annie UK

Below are some frequently asked questions (and some not so frequently), mainly for Sky+HD users, that hopefully you will find helpful for resolving your Sky+HD problems, click/tap on the question to reveal the answer.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q01 How do you reboot your set top box?
Use the following procedure:
  1. Put your Sky+HD box into standby and wait a few minutes to let the hard disk settle
    or
    hold the power button  down until the power LED starts blinking red, release the power button  then wait for the LED to stop blinking (Older boxes do not have this feature)
  2. Pull out the mains plug for at least 5 minutes
  3. Plug the Sky+HD box back in again

This procedure is worth doing when your box is not behaving as expected
Q02 How do you perform a Planner Rebuild?
Select one of the following procedures:
  1. For Sky+HD boxes with the latest software try the following instructions:
    1. Press SERVICES on your remote
    2. Go to Help
    3. Select Sky+ Rebuild
    4. Press SELECT (this will start the rebuild)
  1. If you cannot find the rebuild option using the above instructions then you might not have the latest software and should follow the instructions below:
    (steps
    1
    to
    5
    are best done without looking at the TV screen, as the menus on-screen will not behave as expected until you complete step
    5
    )

    1. Press SERVICES on your remote
    2. Press 0 (very old boxes may need you to press 4 instead)
    3. Press 0
    4. Press 1
    5. Press SELECT (You should now be in the hidden menu)
    6. Press 7 (Sky+ Rebuild)
    7. Press SELECT (An on-screen message will be displayed)
    8. Press SELECT (this will start the rebuild)

This will generally fix most recording related issues, It will usually take less than 5 minutes to complete. A rebuild will stop recordings currently in progress but your saved programmes and schedules in the planner WILL NOT be deleted

YouTube: Planner Rebuild
Q03 How do you access the hidden installers menu?
Use the following procedure (best done without looking at the TV screen, as the menus on-screen will not behave as expected until you complete step
5
):
  1. Press SERVICES on your remote
  2. Press 0 (very old boxes may need you to press 4 instead)
  3. Press 0
  4. Press 1
  5. Press SELECT

You should now be in the hidden installers menu
Q04 How do you perform a software update?
Use the following procedure:
  1. Put your Sky+HD box into standby  , then wait a few minutes to let the hard disk settle
    or
    hold the power button  down until the power LED starts blinking red, release the power button  then wait for the LED to stop blinking (Older boxes do not have this feature)
  2. Turn off the power to your Sky+HD box at the mains
  3. Hold down the back up button on the top of your Sky+HD box
  4. Whilst you continue to hold down the back up button turn the power back on to your Sky+HD box
  5. Keep the back up button held down until you see four LEDs light up on the front of your Sky+HD Box, you should also see an on-screen message
  6. Release the back up button and wait for the Sky+HD box to restart

    The update will take approximately 10 minutes to complete and uses the Disaster Recovery Stream (DR Stream) to update your Sky+HDs Electronic Programme Guide (EPG) software

Note: This can sometimes take several attempts before the process works as holding the back-up button down is sometimes tricky

YouTube: Software Update
Q05 When will the Disaster Recovery (DR) Stream be updated?
The Disaster Recovery Stream, where the latest software is obtained from, is updated near the end of a roll-out, which can be a couple of month or so after the start of a roll-out
Q06 How long does a software roll-out take?
On average a roll-out takes a couple of months to complete, where there are issues with the software identified during the roll-out this can make things take a little longer than expected
Q07 Can we have details of the next software update?
Software updates are covered by a NDA (Non-disclosure agreement), details are not disclosed until the updates start being rolled out to customers.
Q08 How do you find the software version of your set top box?
Use the following procedure:
  1. Press SERVICES on your remote
  2. Go to Settings
  3. Press 3

The software version is the Model Number in the format R000.000.00.00P
Q09 Does Sky use premium rate phone numbers?
No, sky uses 03 numbers

Ofcom introduced UK-wide 03 numbers as an alternative to chargeable 08 numbers, such as 0870

These numbers allow organisations to have a single national point of contact without consumers having to pay extra to call them. Calls cost no more than calls to geographic numbers (01 or 02) and are included in inclusive minutes and discount schemes
Q10 How long does it take to activate channels after an upgrade request?
Package upgrades should take no longer than 24 hours and typically take just a few minutes to a couple of hours to activate
Q11 How do you check signal strength/quality?
The signal strengths/qualities can be found under the signal tab within settings. The white part of the bars should be longer than the blue (See examples in the images below)

Input 1
Input 2
Q12 How do you reset the boxes network connection?
To reset the network connection of your set top box use the following procedure:
  1. Press SERVICES on your remote
  2. Go to Options
  3. Press 5 (Network tab)
  4. Press SELECT (to display the coloured button options at the bottom of the screen)
  5. Press the red button
Q13 Can a planner rebuild, reboot, etc.. delete my recordings?
No, the only things that delete recordings are:
  1. Users manually deleting them with the yellow button
  2. Automatic housekeeping when space is required and the Keep feature is not used
  3. A downloaded On Demand programme has expired regardless of the Keep feature being used

A full system Reset (from the hidden menu) will also delete recordings, Schedules, etc...
Q14 What is Diskless mode?
If your set top box informs you that it cannot do something because it is in Diskless Mode then this is usually due to the hard disk within the Sky box becoming corrupted or in some severe cases completely broken.

Try rebooting your Sky box using the instructions in Q01, if this fails try a software update (see Q04 for instructions), if both these fails to fix the issue then you can perform a full system reset (FSR) of your Sky box to try and fix the corruption, if an FSR fails to reolve the problem then you will need to contact Sky who will most likely replace the faulty box

A full system reset (from the hidden menu) will delete ALL Recordings, Schedules, etc...
Q15 How do you perform a Full System Reset (FSR)?
This procedure should only be done if all else has failed, if this procedure does not fix your issue you will need to contact Sky for further assistance:
Warning: The procedure below will delete ALL recordings and schedules
(steps
1
to
5
are best done without looking at the TV screen, as the menus on-screen will not behave as expected until you complete step
5
)
  1. Press SERVICES on your remote
  2. Press 0 (very old boxes may need you to press 4 instead)
  3. Press 0
  4. Press 1
  5. Press SELECT (You should now be in the hidden menu)
  6. Use the right arrow button to highlight Sys Reset and press SELECT. You’ll see an on screen message, "This option will delete all existing and planned recordings and purchases. All Buy & Keep purchases are available to re-download from the Purchased Tab"
  7. Press SELECT to confirm, Your TV screen will go blank and your Sky+HD box will switch itself off
  8. Wait for at least three minutes and then press sky on your remote to switch your Sky+HD box back on

A full system Reset (from the hidden menu) will also delete recordings, Schedules, etc...
Q16 How do you access the Services menu without a Sky remote control?
If your 3rd party remote control does not have a SERVICES button you can still access the services menu by pressing the i / Info or equivelent button on your remote when you are on your set top boxes home page, also the set top box has an i button on the top that you can use in the same manner to access the services menu

YouTube - Software Update
Example STB Home page
Q17 How do you reset your On Demand connection with a Sky box connected to your router via Ethernet?
Try the following procedure:
  1. Put your Sky+HD box into standby  and wait a few minutes to let the hard disk settle
    or
    hold the power button  down until the power LED starts blinking red, release the power button  then wait for the LED to stop blinking (Older boxes do not have this feature)
  2. Pull out the mains plug for at least 5 minutes
  3. Whilst the box is powered off remove the Ethernet cable
  4. Reboot your broadband router
  5. Power on your Sky box
  6. Wait another 5 minutes for the Sky box to fully initialise
  7. Reinsert the Ethernet cable
Q18 How do you reset your On Demand connection with a Sky box connected to your router via Wi-Fi adapter?
Try the following procedure:
  1. Put your Sky+HD box into standby  and wait a few minutes to let the hard disk settle
    or
    hold the power button  down until the power LED starts blinking red, release the power button  then wait for the LED to stop blinking (Older boxes do not have this feature)
  2. Pull out the mains plug for at least 5 minutes
  3. Whilst the box is powered off remove the Wi-Fi adapter from the USB port
  4. Reboot your broadband router
  5. Power on your Sky box
  6. Wait another 5 minutes for the Sky box to fully initialise
  7. Reinsert the Wi-Fi adapter to the USB port
Q19 Why am I'm being asked to upgrade my subscription for some On Demand programmes?
On Demand is the name given to any programme you download to your Sky+ box. This name does not indicate which section the programme comes from when you search for its title, the programme could be from Catch Up ,that is free to all subscribers or it could be from Box Sets, which requires an additional monthly charge.
Q20 Why is Audio Description (AD) still on after I have turned it off?
If this is on an existing recording then you cannot turn AD off for recordings as the audio track is recorded at the same time as the video and it is not possible to remove the Audio Description soundtrack, once you turn off AD the any existing or new scheduled recordings will not include the AD soundrack.

AD for live broadcasts can be turned off and on at will.

If you are having difficulty turning off AD from live TV then try a Planner Rebuild (See Q02 in this FAQ).
Q21 How do you perform a New Install?
Use the following procedure (best done without looking at the TV screen, as the you will not get to the hidden menu until you complete step
5
):
  1. Press SERVICES on your remote
  2. Press 0 (very old boxes may need you to press 4 instead)
  3. Press 0
  4. Press 1
  5. Press SELECT
  6. Scroll across to New Install
  7. Press SELECT
  8. Press SELECT

Note: No recordings, Schedules or Settings will be deleted due to this process
Q22 Why can I not record a programme whilst watching another live programme?
There could be an issue with one of the dish inputs:
  1. Try rebooting your Sky box using the instructions in Q01
  2. Check the signal and strength of both dish inputs using the instructions in Q11, if the 4 bars are not mainly white then there is an issue with the corresponding dish input
  3. Make sure both dish cables are undamaged and securely screwed into your Sky box (finger tight), make sure none of the thin copper sheilding wires are touching the thicker central copper wire
  4. Try swapping the input 1 & 2 cables around at the back of your Sky box
  5. Check that the dish is not lose or moved (even the slightest bit)

If you can see nothing wrong then you will have to call out Sky to have your system checked, the fee is £65 and includes all parts and labour to get you back up and running again
Q23 Why am I getting a No Signal message?
There could be an issue with one of the dish inputs:
  1. Try rebooting your Sky box using the instructions in Q01
  2. Check the signal and strength of both dish inputs using the instructions in Q11, if the 4 bars are not mainly white then there is an issue with the corresponding dish input
  3. Make sure both dish cables are undamaged and securely screwed into your Sky box (finger tight), make sure none of the thin copper sheilding wires are touching the thicker central copper wire
  4. Try swapping the input 1 & 2 cables around at the back of your Sky box
  5. Check that the dish is not lose or moved (even the slightest bit)

If you can see nothing wrong then you will have to call out Sky to have your system checked, the fee is £65 and includes all parts and labour to get you back up and running again
Q24 Why is my Sky box stuck on initialising?
There could be an issue with one of the dish inputs:
  1. Try rebooting your Sky box using the instructions in Q01
  2. Check the signal and strength of both dish inputs using the instructions in Q11, if the 4 bars are not mainly white then there is an issue with the corresponding dish input
  3. Make sure both dish cables are undamaged and securely screwed into your Sky box (finger tight), make sure none of the thin copper sheilding wires are touching the thicker central copper wire
  4. Try swapping the input 1 & 2 cables around at the back of your Sky box
  5. Check that the dish is not lose or moved (even the slightest bit)

If you can see nothing wrong then you will have to call out Sky to have your system checked, the fee is £65 and includes all parts and labour to get you back up and running again
Q25 My viewing card looks burnt, is it damaged?
It is highly unlikely that your viewing card is burnt, the card is glued together with resin that overtime discolours leaving a brown mark, this is quite normal and the card will work, there is no reason to replace the card unless it is no longer authorising your channels and re-pairing and/or a new install has been performed and failed
Q26 How do you clean the remote controls internals?
If for some reason 1 or more buttons stop working on your remote control this could be a build up of natural oils from your fingers on the printed circuit board (PCB)
To clean the remote controls internals perform the following:
  1. Remove the single screw found in the battery compartment
  2. Carefully prise the two pieces of the remote case apart (this can be rather tricky) to gain access to the PCB and rubber button mat
  3. Clean the parts with a dry soft cloth, making sure the PCB and back of the button mat are totally clear of any dirt etc...
  4. Put the remote back together again in the reverse sequence you took the apart
Q27 Why are some channels requesting a PIN in the daytime?
Ofcom have allowed some channels to show out of watershed* programmes but require a PIN to do so, check this link for sky's information page

* in Britain, the time in the evening, usually 9 p.m., when television programmes that are not suitable for children may start to be shown