Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: question about drivers

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Beans
    46

    question about drivers

    Hi, I moved to NZ from the UK, and brought an HP pavillion that I use MCE to watch and record TV to a 500GB USB disk. In the UK I used a Hauppage Nova TD DVB-T stick (USB), which works in NZ (which is MPEG-4 rather than MPEG-2 in the UK - as Terrestrial Freeview is HD here). Although it worked at one campsite, when we moved to a different site, there was not a usable terrestrial signal, so I bought an Avermedia AVerTV DVB-S USB Galaxy, which supports satellite, as well as analog and S-video etc. Now we have a house, the two work together. The logic behind the USB devices was that the HP pav is a low-profile case, and will not take a full-height PCI card, and there is only one spare bay which is not PCI-E.

    I have used debian and ubuntu on low-spec PC's for a few years now - and a recent problem with Windows 7 (SP1 trashed my dual-boot laptop) has made me feel I need to get away from Windows altogether. So, I'm looking at repartitioning the Windows 7 HP Pav, and putting Mythbuntu on it as a front and back end initially.

    I have looked through the Wiki for Myth TV, and it looks like my Hauppage Nova TD may well work, but I can find no mention of the Avermedia Galaxy anywhere in this context. So, I'm figuring there is no driver for it.

    Before I start hacking at my HP Pav (which is our only source of TV - as the Freeview recorder & TV we bought don't - being MPEG-2 not MPEG-4) I was wondering what is involved in writing a driver for something like this. I haven't written a driver for linux, and the last time I did write a driver was for a printer under SCO UNIX - over 15 years ago.

    I apologise for the length of this, but if somebody could point me in the general direction of where I would start, that would be appreciated. Would I need to get information from the manufacturer, or is there some other way of deriving the configuration settings I will need?

    By the way, the Avermedia unit is extremely good, although the blue 'active' light is quite bright when watching TV in the dark.

    Thanks,

    Mish.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Beans
    2,334

    Re: question about drivers

    Hi,

    Writing a driver for a card might be easy, it might be impossible. Firstly the easy part. It the card you have uses chips that are already supported by linux (Tuner chip & decoder chip) then it's "just" a matter of adding the PCI ID's to a driver that uses the same chips. The hard/impossible bit is if the card uses chips that aren't supported so you'll have to write your own driver and quite often you can't get access to the specifications for the chips.

    A good example it took me about 2 days to hack support for a new chip into the w83627ehf hardware monitoring driver. Most of the time was spent understanding the code/getting the PDF specification and the actual changes were very small.

    Edit: Why not just burn a liveCD, boot from it a see what linux finds (/dev/dvb) or dmesg.

    Regards
    Ian Dobson
    Last edited by ian dobson; February 27th, 2011 at 03:26 PM.
    Walking on water and writing software to specification is easy if they're frozen.

    My corner of the internet http://www.planet-ian.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Beans
    46

    Re: question about drivers

    Quote Originally Posted by ian dobson View Post
    Hi,

    Writing a driver for a card might be easy, it might be impossible. Firstly the easy part. It the card you have uses chips that are already supported by linux (Tuner chip & decoder chip) then it's "just" a matter of adding the PCI ID's to a driver that uses the same chips. The hard/impossible bit is if the card uses chips that aren't supported so you'll have to write your own driver and quite often you can't get access to the specifications for the chips.

    A good example it took me about 2 days to hack support for a new chip into the w83627ehf hardware monitoring driver. Most of the time was spent understanding the code/getting the PDF specification and the actual changes were very small.

    Edit: Why not just burn a liveCD, boot from it a see what linux finds (/dev/dvb) or dmesg.

    Regards
    Ian Dobson
    Thanks, the simplest solutions are always the best - completely forgot it was available on live disk.

    Mish.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Beans
    46

    Re: question about drivers

    Thanks,

    I tried the Ubuntu 6-pack live disk, and under Ubuntu it listed two devices. I'll need to wait till I get a proper broadband connection to try installing on an older test PC first.

    Mish.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Beans
    46

    Re: question about drivers

    This is what I found. Having tried using the liveCD, I installed Mythbuntu on an old PC, with the Hauppage DVB-T USB card. This did work, although I lost the configuration trying to enable both channels - the signal was strong enough for one, but when split across two it played up. It also worked with a cheap August USB I have - but again, the signal is too poor to run three tuners, even with a booster-splitter.

    I had problems with the W7 MCE when it did an automatic update overnight (PC failed to come back up again, and couldn't access bios, etc. I managed to get the system up with a liveCD, and complete the update. I decided to install Mythbuntu beside W7, as a dual boot system (so I can still watch TV and getting this working when time allows).

    The AverTV Galaxy USB DVB-S did not get picked up at all. So, I am figuring that what was picked up by the liveCD was not the two devices, but the two tuners on the Hauppage USB DVB-T.

    I want to get the AverTV DVB-S (which also has an analog tuner & FM radio) working because the satelite reception is much better than arial. Then I could use the older box I set up to act as a back-end and Terrestrial Freeview recorder to avoid conflicts when watching TV on the DVB-S. It would be in a different part of the house.

    The HP Media Centre remote & IR receiver seems to work OK, which is nice.

    Thanks,

    Mish

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Beans
    46

    Re: question about drivers

    By the way, end of dmesg, following unpluf/replug of USB:

    [ 6332.987593] usb 1-1: USB disconnect, address 2
    [ 6339.776024] usb 1-1: new high speed USB device using ehci_hcd and address 5

    It doesn't detail anything more than that.

    $ ps -fe | grep udev

    root 386 1 0 Mar10 ? 00:00:00 upstart-udev-bridge --daemon
    root 392 1 0 Mar10 ? 00:00:00 udevd --daemon
    root 544 392 0 Mar10 ? 00:00:00 udevd --daemon
    root 549 392 0 Mar10 ? 00:00:00 udevd --daemon
    user 4686 3688 0 00:47 pts/0 00:00:00 grep --color=auto udev

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Beans
    46

    Re: question about drivers

    I made some progress, reading around, I tried installing "linux-firmware-nonfree". I then unplugged & replugged the card.

    I now get

    $ ls /dev/dvb
    adapter0 adapter1 adapter2 adapter3

    $ ls /dev/dvb/adapter0
    audio0 ca0 demux0 dvr0 frontend0 net0 osd0 video0

    and tail dmesg:

    [ 8105.109604] usb 1-1: USB disconnect, address 5
    [ 8110.092537] usb 1-1: new high speed USB device using ehci_hcd and address 6

    but, I still cannot open the card. The message I get is this:

    $ sudo scan /usr/share/dvb/dvb-s/OptusD1-160E
    scanning /usr/share/dvb/dvb-s/OptusD1-160E
    using '/dev/dvb/adapter0/frontend0' and '/dev/dvb/adapter0/demux0'
    main:2284: FATAL: failed to open '/dev/dvb/adapter0/frontend0': 6 No such device or address

    Any ideas?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Beans
    2,334

    Re: question about drivers

    Hi,

    What else do you see in dmesg? Did the driver actually find/install the firmware?

    Regards
    Ian Dobson
    Walking on water and writing software to specification is easy if they're frozen.

    My corner of the internet http://www.planet-ian.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Beans
    46

    Re: question about drivers

    No, it didn't.

    I contacted AverMedia about Linux drivers:

    "For your information, the AverTV Galaxy is not compatible under Linux. Due that the device was originally designed to work under Windows only, we don't have any plannings on having the device supported under Linux."

    Then in reply to a question about information to help construct a driver:

    "Unfortunately, such information is considered classified according to company policy. Therefore, we are not allowed to provide detailed information out."

    So, that is a bit of a problem really.

    Mish.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •