Thoughts & news on technology…well, mostly

How to reclaim disk space on a Motorola DCT6412 III DVR from RCN

Have you been an RCN customer using a Motorola HD DVR (DCT6412 III) with the Passport Echo DVR software? If you have, you may have noticed that over time your available record time (i.e., free disk space) gets smaller and smaller. I didn’t notice it until my available recording time (for HD shows) went from around 15 hours –> 4 hours.

The reason for this is because of a bug in the Passport Echo DVR software. My guess: when you delete a show, the software doesn’t reclaim all of the freed-up disk space. Here’s how to fix the problem:

  1. Make sure your DVR is turned-on
  2. Hold the power button on the DVR until you see “boot” displayed on the DVR (not on your TV)
  3. Let go of the power button
  4. Wait for 3 – 5 minutes so the DVR and Passport Echo reboot

That’s it – you’re done. Don’t worry about your recorded shows, this process will not erase them. Passport Echo will now ‘see’ all of the available space on the hard drive.

To check your available disk space, do the following:

  1. Click the “DVR” button on your remote
  2. Ensure the list of recorded shows is displayed (if not, click the “A” button)
  3. When the listing of recorded shows is displayed, click the “A” button, again
  4. A small pop-up menu will be displayed
  5. In the pop-up menu, choose ‘view disk space’

FYI, the customer support rep told me that RCN has been working with Passport Echo for the past couple of months to fix this bug and that a fix should be pushed to our DVRs in the near future.

It would’ve been nice if RCN proactively warned us about this bug since it would’ve significantly reduced the number of tech support calls they got for this issue.

Update (3/30/2007) Added steps for how to see the amount of available disk space.


Filed under: DVR, How-To, Motorola

8 Responses

  1. Dale says:

    Sorry, tried it and all that happend was the unit turned off.

  2. koolio says:

    Hmm, that’s strange.

    I’m assuming your DVR has the Passport Echo software on it, right? When you followed the steps, did you see “boot” displayed on the LED screen?

  3. Jordan says:

    I’ve noticed this problem happening for a while. This is the only place where I could find a clear solution. Even the RCN tech didn’t seem to have a clue. Thanks for the help.

  4. koolio says:


    No problem – glad I could be of help!

    It’s amazing how the RCN tech couldn’t help you…oh, I guess they never pushed that patch out like the tech told me back in January. Gotta love the customer service.

  5. Craig says:


    Does anyone know how to disconnect the battery in the DCT6412 III?

    It has a pin coming up from the motherboard to a 90 degree turn into the positive side of the battery. A simple clip holds the negative side.

    It is very tightly held and I don’t want to break the connection to the motherboard. Any techniques anyone knows to replace this battery would be greatly appreciated.



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  7. tess says:

    This thread is from 2007 and I am sad to report that RCN hasn’t updated these boxes or fixed the problem. I just followed your instructions and went from 46% free space to 73%. I thank you and am grateful considering the only other advice I found was from the same time frame and that RCN was sending an update.

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