Need Advice on choosing version

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Need Advice on choosing version

While I am a computer professional, the whole world of Tivo and Tivo hacking/upgrading is new to me. I have been searching for the answers to my questions for weeks in this and many other forums, but have yet to see my questions asked (Maybe I just didn't find them and they are out there, but I did look for at least 3 weeks before I felt it was safe to post)

I had purchased DirecTV to get the Yes Network since Dish Network didn't offer it. I figured, hey, what the heck, if I am going to put another system in my house, I may as well spend the extra $50 and see if this Tivo thing (Model R10) is better than the Dish Network PVR (Model 510).

Well, I am hooked. Tivo is so far advanced from the Dish Network offering it is shocking. While sure, they both record TV shows...but the Tivo seems to have a mind of its own, searching out shows it thinks my family and I might like....and the Season Pass feature is simply great.

But seeing that the people with the standalone Tivos have more features than I have left me wanting more. Searching the Internet, I found this site. I have lurked in these forums for weeks, learning what is involved in getting my DirecTivo networked.

Following advice I saw here to others, I even went to Ebay and purchased a slightly used Hughes SD-DVR40 since it seems that my R10 is not as easily upgraded. I figure that I'll leave the R10 down in the living room for the family, and I'll put the Hughes upstairs in a bedroom and network it from there.

I picked up myself a new hard drive that was on sale last week at Staples, a 120Gb unit for the upgrade. I have the Hughes SD-DVR40....all I need is the Instant Cake and the PTVnet CD.

Now, here are my questions....Do I hook up the unit as is to the satellite dish and activate it before I do any upgrades? Or can that wait for after?

The Hughes currently has version 3.1.1e installed. Do I purchase the version 6.2 Instant Cake? Or stick with the older 3.1.1e, since it seems to have more networking features?

Does anyone have any other advice for things I didn't think of?

I am amazed at the breadth of knowledge that is here in these forums....I hope after I learn a bit I'll be able to return the favor to other newbies....

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide,
Ron