View Full Version : 7.10 observations

October 3rd, 2007, 08:38 AM
I have mythbuntu on a couple of systems. and mythtv front ends on a couple of ubuntu systems as well. In general they are working well.

If you are going to watch HDTV content, I recommend getting something faster than an AMD xp2400+ system. That system is fine for capturing the stream from a HdHomeRun box, but watching as well just can't keep up. Considering that my 1.5 ghz dual core acer laptop is keeping up on an Intel video card with Gutsy 7.10 and normal desktop effects running, I suspect the threshold for a single core processor is 2800 or 3gig. I will admit that the AMD processor is only working with 1 gig of memory, vs 2 gig in the laptop, but I don't think that should be having that much of an impact.

Not all is perfect in the Intel video world yet either. I built a dedicated front end out of an IBM netvista I picked up for a different project, and it seems to have issues displaying HD video as well. Though in this case I don't appear to be playing the glitchy play problem. I just don't get any video out of the box during recording playback, or from a feed from the HdHomeRun boxes. Playback is fine on my dual core boxes running Feisty and Gutsy desktops with the MythTV front end software running. I also get good audio out of the player, just no video. Tried all the video playback modes that made sense to me to try, though I admit I did not try the VIA VxM mode, as I think that was intended for via graphicss interfaces with the embeded mpeg2 decoders, which I don't think the Intel video supports.

The Laptop has an enhanced s-video out port on the side of it, would love to be able to use that for output, but the chipset is Intel, and I don't think the drivers in Gutsy support thatt yet. Though it might be a bios setting, will have to check on that later.

The back end box is now running with 4 400 gig HD's the first one partitioned 92 G for root, 280 G in lvm, and 2 gig for swap. All of the other 2 HD's are entirely in the lvm. The lvm is mounted on /var/lib/mythtv, and ends up with a capacity of 1T. And yes, over half of it is in use already.

Capture is 3 pvr-250s, all fed of of cable tv, 1 hdhomerun off of cable, and 1 hdhomerun off of an antenna. (not completely happy with my antenna situation yet.)

I waited until my cable modem was failing before I did the latest patch update, but that's been done (not svn, but that may happen in the future)

Xorg.log shows that the detected chipset on the video card giving me strange hdtv playback is an 845G. Since I am not running any desktop effects on this system I don't think compiz is at issue.

I used menukeys to tell the playback video editor to use the mute key to insert all the detected cut-points, at which point I was able to reasonably easily use my StreamZap remote for editing video. Long term I would love to use a Shuttle Express (or other) to do the editing, with the five buttons set to beginning, previous mark, set/edit mark, next mark, end, and the jog set to seek forward or back, and the shuttle dial set to frame forward or back depending upon rotation. However I think it's recognized as a mouse, with the jog wheel being recognized as a couple of the mouse buttons, and one out of the five buttons recognized as another. It's a limitation of the driver that the usb automount loads for this device, and shows up in the main distributions as well. Fix would be a better driver for the device (possibly ported from one that exists for one of the video editing projects out there, don't recall which, noticed it several months ago actually) However since mice are currently not particularly useful in MythTV, I suspect it would take about as much work as getting editing via joystick control would.

Latest apt-get upgrade installed gnome-screensaver which doesn't recognize IR events. Makes it inconvenient to watch videos as after 5 or 10 min the screen goes black and you have to either move a mouse (untested) or press a key to get your video back.

On my back end, the update configured security on my mythweb system, however mythweb does not show up in the list of available systems to access on any port I have apache configured to run on. The installer only prompted for the password once, meaning that I may have typed a different password than I though, and would not catch that till much later now. (though by removing mythweb from the menu entirely, I'm pretty sure the 'wrong password' is not the issue.

Love the 'playlist' option in Watch Recordings. Would like to see Videos added to that, as well as a custom playlist editor, If you haven't run into this, go into 'Watch Recordings', select a video, and right arrow on it, then select 'Add to Playlist' (or if necessary 'Remove from Playlist'). Repeat as necessary till all the videos of interest are added. Then go to the base 'Watch Recordings' menu and press 'm' (menu) and scroll down to 'Playlist options' Then 'Play'

I would suggest editing out commercials first, but that's up to you.

I would also like to see better documentation for using an ip based remote control. i.e. I presume that I could use the IR receiver on the hdhomerun box next to the screen to control a front end sitting next to the couch (for the projector) and build up a lirc file that works with whatever remote I choose to use I am also interested in getting lirc functioning on a separate box that has a wintv card in it with an irreceiver, but that is not running backend software on it. (I'm of the opinion that that would be overkill, and it's neither a great card, nor on a short cable run) Fine for watching some TV, but I have other software for that as well.

Overall, I like what I see, and I'm pretty sure that my complaints are not mythbuntu specific. For all I know the next xorx-server-intel update will fix my hdtv watching issue.

If there were a specific complaint, it would be that the front-end only install should have the default ubuntu mythtv mysql password already entered or available as an option. I.e. Ask if the existing back end is a mythbuntu box and try a default password, and only prompt for a password if that fails.


Armadillo Kilr
October 3rd, 2007, 08:42 AM
thanks for posting

October 3rd, 2007, 08:36 PM
I feel that with the right video card, I could do HD with a Athlon XP 2500+. But the machine could be doing absolutely nothing else but that. With that being said, I just made my XP 2000+ a backend and built a new X2 3800+.

A lot of your post seems better aimed at Ubuntu and hardware.

gnome-screensaver issue should be fixed in the beta. It was a bug related to how it was being handled. If it still persists in the beta then let us know, and we will figure something out.

mythweb is hidden by default. you can access it by going to http://hostip/mythweb You will be prompted for your username and password. The user name is the one you put in during install.

Hopefully as Gutsy gets closer to release, your issues will resolve. As to this

If there were a specific complaint, it would be that the front-end only install should have the default ubuntu mythtv mysql password already entered or available as an option. I.e. Ask if the existing back end is a mythbuntu box and try a default password, and only prompt for a password if that fails.

There is no default mythtv mysql password. That password is generated on the fly during install. With that being said, AFAIK you can store your settings on a usb key and if you have that inserted when starting mythbuntu, it will grab your settings from there. Superm1, would know more about that than I.

October 4th, 2007, 04:32 PM
I was getting an internal server error on the url for mythweb, possibly related to the fact that I had not done a reboot of the back end after getting the update installed. Rebooting now to see if that clears the issue. (I very possibly could have restarted just mythbackend, apache, or even mysql, but I seem to recall an updated kernel in the update, that brings that back.

The front end that I am having problems with gnome-screensaver on is running 2.6.22-10-generic #1 as a kernel. This device had been rebooted, and I've restarted gdk along the way. Gnome-screensaver did restart at one point after I had explicitly stopped it, but it is possible that I had exited the UI and restarted the session, which probably would have restarted the screensaver. I can work with halting the screensaver, or even setting up a cron job to find and kill the screensaver pid, (OK, since I know that it will be gnome-screensaver I can use 'gnome-screensaver-command -i' to inhibit the screensaver, or 'gnome-screensaver-command --exit' to terminate it gracefully)

Gnome-screensaver was not an issue with the install CD that I had used. "070830' but became an issue after the apt-get update;apt-get upgrade. I can do a dist-upgrade if that is recommended to bring it up to current beta.

I'm personally of the opinion that the 'Yes, Exit and Shutdown' option should initiate a system shutdown, not a log-off with an automatic restart. I seem to recall under knopmyth that there was a sudo command to initiate a 'halt' for the system, but I'm not seeing the same menues for that stuff, as I think Knoppmyth had spcific extra menus to do that configuration. (I.e. similar to the Mythbuntu screens, but built within the mythtv menuing system.

Sorry about the confusion regarding the mysql password. I have been more familiar with a slightly different configuration. As an idea with respect to making a front-end cd slightly more useful, instructions for how to burn a mythfrontend disk with the appropriate mysql.txt file from the mythbackend system would be handy. The sort version would be to get the image either from the original disk, or from a download at some point, copy the ~/.mythtv/mysql.txt file to a mounted version of the image in the disk's /home/mythtv/.mythtv/ folder, unmount the image, make sure it will still fit on a cd, then burn that to a cd, or even a usb key that can be booted into mythtv. Appropriate notices regarding not making the backend generally available on the internet would be recommended of course.

The system I am using as a front end has PCI slots, and possibly an AGP. No PCIe. I see that Microcenter has a fx 6100 based nvidia card that would fit in the case (half heigth formfactor, don't know if it includes the recommended half height bracket, but...) Considering that I have had very good luck with the nvidia cards I've used so far, I may give that a try. I may even do hdmi with it, though I don't think my projector will do native higher than 1024x768 (should be enough for720p) It will accept a 1280x1024 signal, but I'm not as happy with the result as I am with the 800x600 resolution. That's a preference and with a different video card, 1024x768 may be acceptable.

I should prepare a spec sheet of everything I have working somewhere along the line. At the moment I'm not even sure which motherboard is in my backend system, though it is unlikely to be on the market today. I suppose all the helpful information is in varios /proc/ files, but I need to get some sleep. Work tonight...