Tuesday, March 29, 2011

HTPC Setup (Software)

I decided to use Ubuntu 11.04 with MythTV installed. I did not want MythBuntu as I wanted a full GUI and also to run XBMC as the front end.

HD-PVR and Mythbuntu:

I used a Hauppauge HD-PVR to record off my TW cable DCH3416 mainly because I wanted a better frontend. The interface on the cable box itself makes me want to cry every time I see it. Time Warner really needs to update their stuff. The HD-PVR should work out of the box with Ubuntu 10.04 and later, I'm not sure about earlier versions. However, I had a hard time trying to get the ir transmitter working. Even when I could get it to work it would not survive reboots or OS updates. An outline of the HD-PVR with MythTV is here.

To bypass the flaky ir transmitter issue I just went with direct control over firewire described here. I would definitely recommend the 6200ch script documented there and here for use with the Motorola STB's. My particular model (DCH3416) was not defined in the script so I added my model_id to the 6200ch.c and recompiled. I didn't bother to get recording working over firewire as I already had the HD-PVR.

Next is XBMC as a frontend PVR:

XBMC has only experimental support for PVR functionality at this time and it seems that this is mainly being done through tvheadend. So in order to get this set up I needed some way to shift my recordings to XBMC in some way that was meaningful to it. XBMC is set up with a separate hard drive to the OS and MythTV. Once MythTV has recorded a show I use mythicalLibrarian to move the show into a folder on the drive where XBMC can see it. mythicalLibrarian interacts with MythTV's database to get more information about the show and then moves the file to the XBMC folder location and renames the file in the format XBMC understands: show/season/show.s01e04.mpg etc.

Info on the mythicalLibrarian script can be found here with thanks to 'outleradam' from the XBMC forum for getting that together. He is actively developing it and is very helpful. 

XBMC and watching LiveTV through MythTV:

Thank you to TechNazgul for his useful post.

No comments:

Post a Comment