It was a good service call, and it's all over in about 30 minutes. It was a 2007 KVH M4 dome that stopped acquiring the DirecTV satellites. I could hear it whirring around looking, unwrapping its cables, seeking again, but no TV signal joy was to be had. The DirecTV receiver also verified the story. The endless searching for satellites message. Testing the transponders showed zero signal. Not even a whiff of RF was detected. But I was ready.
I had KVH's software on my netbook, and everything on this boat is super convenient. The KVH data port is right next to both the TV and the receiver. This is the Christmas miracle of marine electronics work. An air conditioned cabin cool enough to hang a side of Angus beef in, everything is within a couple of feet of me, and I don't smell or look like a sweat soaked old guy.