Transfer TiVo-ed Shows to Your Mac

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Transfer TiVo-ed Shows to Your Mac

If you’re a TiVo user, you probably can’t live without its ability to record and control TV shows. Roxio Toast 8, includes a TiVoToGo feature—but with a $100 price tag, it doesn’t quite have the same ring as “free,” which is how much TiVoDecode Manager costs.


1. Your TiVo needs to be on your home network. If it’s not, refer to your TiVo manual to get it connected.


If you haven’t done so already, set up an account at Once that’s done, log in and click DVR Preferences in the left navigation bar.


Check the box for Allow Transfers. Click Save Preferences, but don’t log out yet.


The MAK is the key to TiVo goodness on your Mac.


Click Overview in the left navigation bar, then click the Media Access Key (MAK) link on the right side of the window. The page that appears will reveal your MAK. Write it down, or select it and press Command-C on your keyboard. Now you can log out.



2. Make sure your Mac is on your network and launch TiVoDecode Manager.


Find your TiVo on your network.


Enter your TiVo’s IP address in the TiVo IP Address box. If you don’t know what it is, let the software find it for you by selecting your TiVo from the pull-down menu and clicking the Update From TiVo button.


Next click the Pref button in the lower-right corner. Fill in the Media Access Key box with the number you recorded in step 1. Click Update From TiVo again.



3. A list of shows on your TiVo will appear in the Now Playing list.


Select the show you want to transfer to your Mac, and click Add Show To Queue. The selected show now appears in the Download Queue list. Click Download Location to select where you want to save it.


Pick a format, any format.


At the bottom of the window, click the Download Format pull-down menu to select a format for your downloaded show. If you pick MPEG-2 (native), you can use MPlayerOSX (free) to watch the video. Your other choices are QuickTime MPEG-4 (iPod), or a custom MPEG-4 format where you can choose your own settings.




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how do i keep multiple tivos connected? can i only have on iP address at a time connected?



I posted previously that this didn't work with my S3 Tivo. I stand corrected. After enabling this feature through, the the S3 needs to "phone home." Once that happened, it works, sort of. I have Leopard on this G4 PowerBook, and while it can see the shows, it has trouble downloading and transcoding.



Well, a few things. 1) My comment was unnecessarily snippy. Sorry about that.

2) It's awesome that you are responding to forum posters requests like that!

3) A note letting us know when this first appeared would have been nice, and/or that it doesn't work with Leopard.

Alas, TivoDecodeManager looks like a dead project. Which is a shame, as I used it daily.


Roberto Baldwin

We should form a posse. We'll find the developer convince him we need his program and afterwards go to Chuck E. Cheese.


Mmmmm mediocre pizza and animatronics.



Does not appear to wok with Series 3 HD. TiVo recently enabled this capability, and least with Roxio, but TDM isn't there yet.



Actually, beyond late to the party. Late to the party would have been reporting on this in June, when the last version came out in January.

You are so late to the party that you are reporting this now, but Leopard is out already and breaks TivoDecodeManager.


Roberto Baldwin

This post was a request from a forum user. They were looking for the info, so we posted it.


We're pretty rad that way.



Well, if you read the magazine, you'd know that this article actually appeared in our magazine months ago. A forum member asked us to post it again.

I used TivoDecodeManager last night to put Reaper on my iPod. I was using a MacBook Pro with Leopard and it worked fine. I had problems with the batch download and decode, but single episode downloads and decodes worked without a hitch.

Can you provide a source that says TivoDecode Manager is not Leopard compatible? I can't find anything online that addresses this. 

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