External Hard Drive Support

Need help with your external hard drive? Check out compatibility requirements, important facts, and instructions for setting up and transferring DVR recordings below.

Hard Drive Compatibility Requirements

Keep in mind that the external hard drive must:

  • Use a USB 2.0-compatible cable
  • Meet capacity requirements for your receiver
    • Connected to Hopper: minimum 320 GB, maximum 7 TB (if you are using more than one external hard drive, you cannot exceed more than 6 TB combined)
    • Connected to Wally: minimum 500 GB, maximum 4 TB
    • Connected to other receivers: minimum 50 GB, maximum 2 TB
  • Have a single disk drive (flash memory is not compatible)

Receiver Compatibility Requirements

Your DISH receiver must be one of the receiver models listed below. If you are not sure what receiver model you have, check the name on the front of your receiver or go to mydish.com/myequipment.

DVR Models:

  • Hopper 3
  • Hopper w/ Sling
  • Hopper
  • Hopper Duo
  • ViP 722
  • ViP 722k
  • ViP 622
  • ViP 612

Non-DVR Models:

  • Wally
  • ViP 211
  • ViP 211k
  • ViP 211z

Important Facts

The external hard drive must be reformatted if it is swapped to a different account, which will cause all DVR recordings to be deleted. You can swap the external hard drive between like receivers (DVR model to DVR model or non-DVR model to non-DVR model) on the same account without losing DVR recordings.


If you have a non-DVR receiver model, you can turn your external hard drive into an HD DVR. After setting up your external hard drive, contact us to add the DVR External Hard Drive service to your account. You will be charged a $40 one-time activation fee. Once activated, you can access DVR functionality through your receiver's Menu screen.