My ongoing experiences with Ubuntu, and later Mythbuntu, as a media center with MythTV. I'm also using the system for a virtual machine server, a mediawiki server and a general all around home infrastructure base.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Mythbuntu install

Ok, I had previously gotten my MythTV configuration messed up, so I decided I had been itching to try Mythbuntu, I would start with a fresh installation.

Here I the steps I took:

  1. Downloaded Mythbuntu 8.04.1 and burned to a CD.

  2. Booted CD and ran the Mythbuntu installer.

  3. I used the Manual partitioner and partitioned my 250GB disk into a 50GB partition for the OS and a 200GB partition for program storage. (This worked out, at the end I'm still only using <2GB of the 50GB partition.)

  4. Did the Advanced Install and took the default for everything except:

    • I disable the Samba Service.

    • I set passwords on mythweb and mysql servers.

  5. I enabled a "Hauppage TV card" remote.

It then did it thing and then launched Mythtv-setup (I already have a schedules direct account). In mythtv-setup I did the following:

  1. Under "Capture Cards", I added a new capture card. As I did previously I used MPEG-2 encoder card (PVR-x50, PVR-500) for my WinTV-PVR 250.

  2. Under "Video Sources", I added my Schedules Direct lineup. It retrieved my lineup just fine.

  3. Under "Input Connections", I set the Tuner 1 video source to Schedules Direct and fetched the channels from listings source.

  4. Under "Storage Groups", I added the directory to the 200GB partition to the Default group.

I exited from mythtv-setup and mythfilldb ran. It then restarted, ejecting the CD for me.

After the system came up, the MythTV fronend started. I could see a full program guide under Manager Recordings/Schedule Recordings/Program Guide which was good.

But "Watch TV" didn't work; the screen would just blank and then come back to the menu. Hmmm, there was a little popup in the corner about restricted drivers. I exited MythTV and clicked on the little "driver icon" in the upper right of the desktop. A menu came up wanting to know if I wanted to enable "NVIDIA accelerated graphics driver". I enabled and it tried to install nvidia-glx-new_169.12 but got a 404 error.

I opened a Terminal and run 'sudo apt-get update' and then tried the driver enable again and it worked. I then rebooted.

Damn. Watching TV still didn't work.

Under Setup/Mythbuntu, there is a Propriety Drivers section and I installed the NVIDIA configuration utility and ran it. Ran fine, and I didn't do anything with it. But it just locked up my display when I tried to quit it.

Ah, after reading the advice here and looking in /var/log/mythtv/mythbackend, that provided the missing clue:

2008-09-22 21:52:33.292 TFW, Error: Opening file '/mnt/data/mythtv/1002_20080922215232.mpg'.
eno: Permission denied (13)

The directory /mnt/data was where I had mounted the 200GB partition and then I had created mythtv but I (i.e. the user I had provided during installation) owned it. Apparently, the mythtv user needed to own it.

# chown mythtv:mythtv /mnt/data/mythtv/

And now Watch TV worked!

Some minor administration followed:

  1. Reset static IP address using directions here. Note that as soon as I changed /etc/networks/interfaces, the eth0 network went away and I had to run '/etc/init.d/networking restart' to restore it.

  2. Installed some utils I like:
    apt-get install screen cvs

  3. Ran '/usr/bin/apt-get -y dist-upgrade' to update everything.

  4. Ran 'apt-get autoremove' to clean up

  5. And a reboot after all of that...

Ok, everything seems to be basically working at this point except for some minor tweaks with the remote and channgel changing with mythtv. But I got a bunch of recordings scheduled and that's enough for tonight.
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