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viewing card number disappeared

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This morning we have no itv,4 or 5. When looking in system set up there is no viewing card number - I am sure that one was there before as we have the number written down. The card is a bbc freeview and was bought about 22 months ago.Any suggestions please?
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Have you lost these channels suddenly, or have you only recently used your digibox?

BBC free to view cards were switched off some time ago.  Does your card have a yellow house logo?  If not, then it is out of date and you will require a new card.  If it is an uptodate card then try switching your box off at the mains and leave for about thirty seconds before switching back on. 

If you have not used your box for some time, and your card has the yellow logo, then your card needs to update.  Leave your box switched on and tuned to Sky News.  It should update in anything from two to twenty-four hours.

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Thank you Robbie for your response. The problem seems to have arisen after our daughter was trying to play an interactive game yesterday. Our digibox is always on and never unplugged. We did try to unplug it this morning and that did not work. The card is the up to date one which you mention and I hope that it is OK that we have taken out and re-inserted it. We put it on ITV and the message now reads 'initializing new sky card please wait.' What are your thoughts? Thanks again.

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I've never seen this message.  I only use my Sky box in France as I have a motorised dish here in the UK and my box is disconnected from the end of October until I return in March.  Usually, I just switch on the box and leave it on Sky News when it updates in a few hours.

You could try and force a software download as it's possible your daughter may have caused a problem when she disconnected.  It's unlikely, but it may be worth a try.  I've cut and pasted from Sky Digital FAQ.  If this doesn't work try leaving your box on Sky News.  Don't forget to remove your card before attempting the download.

If that doesn't work, it's possible your daughter accidentally forced a software download with your card in situ and it has been damaged.  If that is the case, you will need a new card which will cost £20.  If you have a relation in England they will be able to get one for you and post it on.

>How do I force a software download?
First, simply unplug your box from the mains and then plug it back in
again. This triggers any new software that your box may have
downloaded. If that fails: Remove your card. Switch the box off at the
mains. Press and hold the backup button down on the front of the box
(not the remote), then switch the mains back on without releasing the
backup button. Wait for about 20 seconds, until you see a message
appear on your television (which only appears on a SCART lead) and all
the lights come on on the front of the digibox. Then release the
button. Follow the instructions ie don't do anything for the next ten
minutes after which time the box will restart. Forcing a software
upgrade is not normally required since Sky upgrade all box software
automatically. Furthermore both new and old software may be
transmitted simultaneously so, if your box hasn't been told to
upgrade, you may still receive the old software. Experience shows that
many boxes download upgraded software but do not activate it until you
switch the box off and on at the mains. When Sky wish to upgrade your
box they simply send it a signal to switch off.

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Since there is no number showing on the info page, it's reasonable to assume that the card reader is not reading the card.

1) (sorry to state the bleedin' obvious but) are you sure the card is in the right slot and pushed fully home?

2) take it out and clean the contacts with a soft cloth (don't go mad polishing it or you run the risk of zapping it with static) Try again.

3) take the card out. turn the box off at the mains, wait 10 secs, turn it on again and select the info page then insert the card and monitor it for any change.

4) if no improvement you could try software rebooting without the card in [turn off at the mains and then back on holding the 'backup' button on the box. hold until a message appears on the screen. don't touch again until it's finished and put itself into stand-by] now select the TV guide and ITV, 4,5 etc should be missing. Now insert the card and - if its being read properly - it should re-install the missing channels.

5) if none of these help, you have a problem with box or card (obviously). do you have anyone you can test by substitution with (swap card, swap box) ?  



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I assume you are in France. As you say that your daughter was playing an interactive game, does that mean your digibox was connected to a phone line? If so, I think it may be possible, though very unlucky, that your card may have been deactivated, because they are supposed to be for use only in UK.
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[quote]I assume you are in France. As you say that your daughter was playing an interactive game, does that mean your digibox was connected to a phone line? If so, I think it may be possible, though very unl...[/quote]


Although it's possible (almost anything's possible), I think it highly unlikely the card has been deactivated by connecting it to a phone line because :

1) Normally when this happens the card generates a "card no longer valid" message.

2) To be in contact with Sky centre in Livingstone, the box would have had to be told to 'phone home' which normally happens overnight, but more importantly, the box would have had to dial 00 44 etc which - as far as I know - it is singularly incapable of doing. If you embark on something interactive which requires a phonecall (booking a movie, for example) it simply reports "phone line disconnected" and ends there. It might hang, but it's unlikely to zap the card.

No technology is foolproof and this would seem to be especially the case with satellites and cards: I have a friend who lives some 15 miles away whose box and card (one of the pre-Jan'04 FTA + ITV/4/5 cards) functioned perfectly in my house, but would not accept its card back home, and would default to stand-by if hard-booted and re-introduced to its card. It was, of course, perfectly happy to work when returned to the UK for repair; similarly my box+card was happy to perform in my friend's house. as the americans would say: "go figure!"


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