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Installing Mythbuntu 12.04.2 with MythTV 0.25

Summary

NOTE: A newer tutorial is available for installing Mythbuntu 14.04.1 with MythTV 0.27.

This tutorial outlines the steps to install Mythbuntu 12.04.2 which includes MythTV 0.25 on a custom MythTV PVR.

After cutting the cord on cable TV, and selecting hardware for a custom MythTV PVR, the next step was to install a GNU/Linux operating system and MythTV. For this task we chose Mythbuntu 12.04.2 which includes MythTV 0.25. The following steps outline how to install Mythbuntu and configure MythTV to work on the custom MythTV PVR. By the end of this tutorial you will have a functional PVR.

Contents

Completed PVR

Following is a picture of the completed PVR in operation.

Completed MythTV PVR in operation

Hopefully this picture will provide the incentive to complete the build of your own PVR.

Although this page has a lot of steps, remember that these only need to be performed once. The reward of building your own custom PVR will be worth it. It certainly has been for us.

A. Setup BIOS

Often the default Basic Input Output Settings (BIOS) are fine. However, since I would be providing support to family and friends, I wanted to ensure that each PVR would be the same and would boot properly after a power outage.

To view or change the BIOS settings you usually need to press a key while the computer boots. For this custom PVR the key to press while booting is the Delete key.

On each ASUS P8H61-M motherboard I made sure I had the following BIOS settings:

  1. Ensure BIOS updated to same level (0702 in May 2011)
  2. Set dedicated iGPU memory to maximum amount (128 MB)
  3. Set SATA to AHCI mode
  4. Set Power ON when power restored
  5. Disable full screen on bootup
  6. Change boot order to DVD then USB then HDD

B. Partition Drive

When I set up a computer I like to choose my own custom partition layout. For the PVR I created an MSDOS partition table with the following partition layout:

    Path name   Partition type   Size       File system  Volume label
    /dev/sda1     Primary             40690 MiB   ext4           mythbuntu1204
    /dev/sda2     Primary              8192 MiB   linux-swap     swap
    /dev/sda3     Primary            ###### MiB   ext4           data

NOTE: The last partition (sda3) uses all of the remaining space on the disk.

Though you can create this partition layout with the Mythbuntu installer, I prefer to use a graphical partitioning tool such as gparted from a GParted Live CD-RW. With GParted it is much easier to create new partitions so I will not document the steps.

NOTE:   If you do not wish to create a custom partition layout, then you can choose to let Mythbuntu create a default partition layout during the Mythbuntu installation. MythTV will work fine with either setup. The only difference is that you will need to ignore tutorial steps that deal with settings using the /data directory.

C. Create Mythbuntu DVD/USB

In order to install Mythbuntu, we first need to download the software and write it to a DVD or a USB flash drive.

  1. Download Mythbuntu 12.04.2 64-bit .iso
  2. Burn the .iso file as an image to a DVD-R(RW),
    or write the image to a USB flash drive.
    Note that the image is too large to fit on a CD-R(RW).

D. Install Mythbuntu

  1. Boot computer with Mythbuntu Live DVD.
  2. When prompted, choose English language
    and click on Install Mythbuntu.
  3. Select Download updates while installing and Install this third party software (mp3)
    and click on Continue.
  4. If you pre-created the partitions, choose Something else
    and click on Continue

    NOTE:   If you do not wish to custom partition the drive, choose Install Mythbuntu, click on Continue and skip to the next numbered step.


    1. Select from Device column: sda1
    2. Click on Change...
    3. Choose the following setttings:
                            Use as:  Ext4 journaling file system
                       Mount point:  /
              Format the partition:  [ ]     # Yes if need to erase file system
                                             # No will maintain volume label
              
      and click on OK

      TIP:   If you choose _not_ to reformat a partition, then you will be prompted later with a message similar to:

      The file system on /dev/sda1 assigned to / has not been marked for reformating...

      Simply click on OK when this happens.

    4. Select from Device column: sda3
    5. Click on Change...
    6. Choose the following setttings:
                            Use as:  Ext4 journaling file system
                       Mount point:  /data
              Format the partition:  [ ]     # Yes if need to erase file system
                                             # No will maintain volume label
              
      and click on OK
    7. Select Device for boot loader installation: /dev/sda
  5. Click on Install Now
  6. When prompted Where are you? choose your own time zone (e.g., Edmonton)
    and click on Continue
  7. Choose the Keyboard layout (e.g., English (US))
    and click on Continue
  8. When prompted Who are you? choose the following:
                    Your Name:  Personal Video Recorder
                Computer Name:  mythpvr
                    User Name:  pvr              # You should choose your
                     Password:  pvrpassword      # own user name and password
          Login automatically:  Yes
          Require my password to login:  No
                Encrypt my home folder:  No
        
    and click on Continue
  9. Choose the Installation type Primary Backend w/Frontend
    and click on Continue
  10. Choose the following Additional Services
                 SSH:  enable                # secure shell
               Samba:  disable               # windows file system sharing
                 NFS:  disable               # network file system
              MythTV:  disable               # remote frontend connections
        
    and click on Continue
  11. For Infrared Remotes choose the following:
        Choose:  USB & Serial Remote Support via LIRC (Linux Infrared Remote Control)
        Choose Remote:  Windows Media Center Transceivers/Remotes (all)
                                   Generate dynamic button mappings:  enable
        Generate frontend restart mapping (Power followed by Clear):  enable
        
    and click on Continue
  12. Grab yourself a fine beverage to enjoy.

    *** The installation might take 1/2 hour or so (15 minutes on SSD) ***

    TIP:   If you see a message indicating:

    Error restoring installed applications

    Simply click on OK. This happened to me, but no problems were experienced.

  13. When Installation Completed then click on Restart Now
  14. Remove Live DVD when prompted, press the Enter key and let the PVR reboot.

E. Exiting MythTV Frontend after Mythbuntu Boot

In several of the following configuration steps we will need to reboot the computer. By default the computer will boot into the MythTV Frontend. This is perfect for when we are using the computer as a PVR, but since we have more configuration to perform we need to exit out of the MythTV Frontend.

TIP:   If prompted with a warning regarding connection to the database, simply acknowledge this by pressing the Enter key.


TIP:   If prompted with a note that a new version of theme chooser is available then click on OK.

To exit the MythTV frontend:

  1. Press Escape key until prompted: Do you really want to exit MythTV?
  2. Use arrow keys to select Yes, Exit and press Enter key.

F. Configure Desktop [Optional]

Following are some desktop configuration changes I make to improve my desktop experience, and so that I am not nagged to apply desktop updates.

Enlarge Desktop Font

  1. Start Applications -> Settings -> Appearance
  2. Click on the Fonts tab.
  3. Change font from Ubuntu 10 to 16.
  4. Close the window.

Delay Screensaver

  1. Start Applications -> Settings -> Screensaver
  2. Change Blank after from 10 to 500 minutes.
  3. Close screensaver window.

Turn Off Update Notifier

  1. Start Applications -> Settings -> Session and Startup
  2. Click on Application Autostart tab.
  3. Disable Update Notifier (Check for available updates automatically)
  4. Click Close button.

G. Opening Terminal Window

Several of the following steps require commands to be entered in a terminal window.

To open a terminal window:

  1. Start Applications -> System -> Terminal

H. Enable TV Capture Card

The driver for the Hauppage WinTV HVR-2250 MC Dual TV Tuner / Encoder card is not included in the default Mythbuntu installation. Hence we will need to install the appropriate driver.

In a terminal window:

  1. Download the driver.
    wget http://www.steventoth.net/linux/hvr22xx/firmwares/4019072/NXP7164-2010-03-10.1.fw
  2. Copy the driver to the proper location.
    sudo cp -p NXP7164-2010-03-10.1.fw /lib/firmware

    NOTE:   When prompted to authenticate, use your "pvr" account password.


    *** a reboot is needed later to load the firmware ***

I. Apply Updates

Because many software updates have been released since the Mythbuntu 12.04.2 was officially released, we should update the software to include the latest bug and security fixes.

  1. If Update Manager is flashing on top task bar, then click on Update Manager.
    Otherwise select menu option Applications -> System -> Update Manager
  2. Click Check for updates.
    *** This might take 5 minutes or so to finish ***
  3. Click Install updates.
    *** This might take a 1/2 hour or more to download and install all of the updates ***

    NOTE:   If or when prompted to authenticate, use your "pvr" account password.

  4. Close window.
  5. Reboot if prompted and use the Exiting MythTV Frontend after Mythbuntu Boot steps above to get back to the desktop.

J. Install TV, DVD, and HDD Utilities [Optional]

Following are applications I install to help with viewing pictures and creating DVDs. These are optional. However, if you are not familiar with Linux text editors then I highly recommend installing at least leafpad.

In a terminal window, enter the following commands:

  1. sudo apt-get install leafpad           # Graphical Text Editor
  2. sudo apt-get install ivtv-utils        # TV Tuner Utilities
  3. sudo apt-get install avi-demux         # Video Editor
  4. sudo apt-get install devede            # DVD menu creator
  5. sudo apt-get install gsmartcontrol     # Hard Disk Health Monitor
  6. sudo apt-get install ristretto         # Picture Viewer

K. Ensure Full Boot Up After Power Off

In a terminal window:

  1. Edit /etc/default/grub
    sudo leafpad /etc/default/grub
    to add the following two lines to the bottom of the file:

    ---------- begin lines to add ----------

    # Ensure full boot up after power outage
    GRUB_RECORDFAIL_TIMEOUT=10

    ---------- end lines to add ----------
  2. Update the GRUB 2 boot loader with:
    sudo update-grub

L. Direct Sound Through HDMI on Intel HD Graphics

Normally sound from your computer is routed through the audio out jacks. This works well when you have speakers connected directly to your computer. However for a PVR, we wish this sound to be directed through the HDMI cable.

In a terminal window:

  1. Determine the card and device number with the command:
    aplay -l
    Check the row containing HDMI for these details. For my PVR it was card 0, device 3.
  2. Create file /etc/asound.conf with command:
    sudo leafpad /etc/asound.conf
    and paste in the following contents, replacing the card and device numbers with the ones for your computer.

    ---------- begin file /etc/asound.conf ----------
    pcm.hdmi_hw {
     type hw
     card 0
     device 3
     }
    
    pcm.hdmi_formatted {
     type plug
     slave {
      pcm hdmi_hw
      rate 48000
      channels 2
      }
     }
    
    pcm.hdmi_complete {
     type softvol
     slave.pcm hdmi_formatted
     control.name hdmi_volume
     control.card 0
     }
    
    pcm.!default hdmi_complete
    
    ---------- end file /etc/asound.conf ----------

    Save the file, and exit the editor.
  3. Test you can hear sound with:
    speaker-test -Dplug:hdmi -c2 -twav
  4. Remove pulseaudio and alsa packages.
    sudo apt-get remove --purge pulseaudio alsa-base
  5. Re-install alsa package.
    sudo apt-get install alsa-base
  6. Reload alsa drivers.
    sudo alsa reload
    A reboot will also reload the drivers.
  7. Test you can hear default sound setup with:
    speaker-test -c2 -twav

M. Install HAL

In order to play Flash videos with Adobe Protected Content we need to install the Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL).

In a terminal window:

  1. Install Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL).
    sudo apt-get install hal
  2. Ensure that HAL starts on Mythbuntu boot.

    Edit /etc/rc.local using:
    sudo leafpad /etc/rc.local
    Locate the already existing line:
    exit 0
    And above this line add the following two lines:

    ---------- begin two lines ----------

    # Ensure HAL starts on Mythbuntu boot
    /usr/sbin/hald

    ---------- end two lines ----------

    Save the file and exit the editor.
  3. Start HAL
    sudo /usr/sbin/hald
    A reboot will also do this.

N. Install Flashplayer and Firefox

In order to be able to stream live content from the Internet, tools such as Adobe Flashplayer are often required.

In a terminal window:

  1. Install flashplayer.
    sudo apt-get install flashplugin-installer

    NOTE:   flashplugin-installer 11.2.202.275ubuntu0.12.04.1 works with CityTV Brightcove Adobe protected content. Higher versions do not appear to work.

  2. Install firefox
    sudo apt-get install firefox
  3. Start Applications -> Internet -> Firefox Web Browser

    TIP:   If prompted Firefox is not default browser, click Yes.

  4. Create Firefox bookmarks [Optional]

    1. Select View -> Bookmarks Toolbar
    2. Remove bookmark Getting started
    3. Create bookmarks for your local TV stations

      For myself, I created the following bookmarks
                Global TV
                CTV
                CityTV
                CBC
                google
              
  5. Close Firefox.

O. Add Extra MythTV Plugins

To enable MythTV to archive shows to DVD, view web sites, and check on the local weather we need to install a few extra MythTV plugins.

  1. Start Applications -> System -> Mythbuntu Control Center
  2. Choose Plugins
  3. Enable the following:
            MythArchive
            MythBrowser
            MythWeather
        
    Note the following are left enabled by default
            MythGallery
            MythMusic
            MythWeb
        
  4. Click on Apply.

    NOTE:   If or when prompted to authenticate, use your "pvr" account password.

  5. Click on Quit.

P. Add New Remote Control Button Mappings

The default Media Center Edition remote control codes are sufficient for operating the PVR. However, I like to add a few more mappings for keys that are not used in the default configuration.

The file containing the raw keycodes from the remote control is /etc/lirc/lircd.conf.
We need to edit the user file to add additional functions in ~/.lirc/mythtv.

The keys we wish to re-map are:

      Remote Key  LIRC Key    Key      Function
      ----------  ---------   ------   ---------
      Pictures    Pictures    PgUp     Page Up
      Music       KEY_AUDIO   PgDown   Page Down
      Videos      KEY_VIDEO   C        Change input
      Radio       KEY_RADIO   T        Toggle teletext closed captioning
      Subtitle    BB2         T        Toggle teletext closed captioning
  1. Edit the file ~/.lirc/mythtv
    leafpad ~/.lirc/mythtv
    and add the following many lines to the end of the file:

    ---------- begin many lines ----------
    begin
        remote = mceusb
        prog = mythtv
        button = Pictures
        config = PgUp
        repeat = 0
        delay = 0
    end
    
    begin
        remote = mceusb
        prog = mythtv
        button = KEY_AUDIO
        config = PgDown
        repeat = 0
        delay = 0
    end
    
    begin
        remote = mceusb
        prog = mythtv
        button = KEY_VIDEO
        config = C
        repeat = 0
        delay = 0
    end
    
    begin
        remote = mceusb
        prog = mythtv
        button = KEY_RADIO
        config = T
        repeat = 0
        delay = 0
    end
    
    begin
        remote = mceusb
        prog = mythtv
        button = BB2
        config = T
        repeat = 0
        delay = 0
    end
    
    ---------- end many lines ----------

    Note to self: Investigate if/how we can use KEY_DVD for the DVD Menu

Q. Disable DVD Playback Prompts

By default Mythbuntu will prompt when a DVD is inserted. Since this can be annoying when using DVDs in MythTV, I disable these prompts.

  1. Insert a video DVD.
  2. At the prompt:
          You have just inserted a Video DVD.  Choose
          what application to launch.
        
    select Do Nothing from the Ask what to do drop-down list.
  3. Enable Always perform this action
  4. Click on OK.
  5. Eject the video DVD.
  6. Repeat the above steps using a blank DVD-R.

R. Setup /data Directory

If you did not create a separate /data file system, then you can skip this section.

From my personal experience, I have found it very useful to store recordings separate from the operating system. The main reasons are for ease of migration, upgrades, and failed disk replacement.

In a terminal window:

  1. Create a /data mount point.
    sudo mkdir /data
    Note that /data should already exist if /data was specified when installing Mythbuntu.
  2. Determine the UUID of your separate data partition using a command like:
    sudo blkid /dev/sda3
  3. Edit /etc/fstab to entry to mount /data.
    sudo leafpad /etc/fstab
    and check for a line for /data.

    If no line for /data is found, then add the following lines, replacing the UUID value with the one you discovered in the above step.

    ---------- begin /etc/fstab lines ----------
    # /data on /dev/sda3
    UUID=2f02b4a8-acfa-4a09-b809-73d1823d1d01   /data   ext4   defaults   0   2
    
    ---------- end /etc/fstab lines ----------

    TIP:   If using RAID then add an entry like:

    ---------- begin /etc/fstab lines ----------

    # /data on /dev/md0p1
    /dev/md0p1                                /data   ext4   defaults   0   2
    

    ---------- end /etc/fstab lines ----------

  4. Test mounting the directory.
    sudo mount -a
  5. Change into the directory.
    cd /data
  6. Create sub-directories.
    sudo mkdir mythtv mythtv/recordings  mythtv/videos \
                      mthtv/music        mythtv/pictures \
                      mythtv/livetv      mythtv/db_backups \
                      mythtv/mytharchive mythtv/mytharchive/temp
    
  7. Change ownership.
    sudo chown -R mythtv.mythtv /data/mythtv
  8. Change permissions.
    sudo chmod -R g+ws /data/mythtv

S. Setup Static IP Address [Optional]

By default Mythbuntu will use a dynamically assigned Internet Protocol (IP) address. Personally I like to have a known static IP address configured so that I can easily remotely connect to the PVR.

If you do not wish to set up a static IP address, then you can skip this step and your PVR continue to work correctly.

For my PVR I chose:
IP-address:   192.168.1.55
hostname:   mythpvr

For the steps to set up a static IP address see the following tutorial:

How To and Why Set Up a Static IP Address on GNU/Linux

T. Create Schedules Direct Account [Optional]

In North America, television show listings are conveniently provided by a Schedules Direct subscription. MythTV can be configured to automatically use these TV show listings.

If you are not in North America, then consult the MythTV XMLTV page to learn how to acquire TV show listings.

High level instructions on how to create a Schedules Direct account follow.

  1. Start a web browser and visit http://www.schedulesdirect.org.
  2. Create an account ($25 USD per year).

    Write down all the details you provide.
  3. Set up TV listings.

    To get all listings on Schedules Direct: login, refresh all lineups and edit for the channels you desire.

    For Over-The-Air broadcasts, I used the name HD Antenna
    For Analog Cable connection, I used the name Shaw Cable

    For my PVR, I only have an HD antenna connected. I note the Shaw Cable connection for my family and my friends that still have analog cable TV subscriptions.

TIP:   To update MythTV immediately, use the following command in a terminal window:

        mythfilldatabase --dd-grab-all

U. Reboot Computer

At this point we reboot the computer to ensure all of the above settings become active.

  1. Start Applications -> System -> Logout
  2. Choose Restart.
  3. Exit the MythTV Frontend using the steps described in Exiting MythTV Frontend after Mythbuntu Boot.

In some of the following steps we need to navigate through the MythTV backend or frontend and alter values. Rather than detailing each keypress required, I have opted to describe how the keys work.

   Key            Action
   ---------      ------------------------------
   Tab            Moves forward through options
   Shift+Tab      Moves backward through options
   Esc(ape)       Backs out of a screen or setting
   Enter          Enters a screen or setting
   Right arrow    Like Enter, but also change value
   Left arrow     Like Esc, but also change value
   Down arrow     Move down through options
   Up arrow       Move up through options

W. Configure MythTV Backend

Before we can use MythTV, we need to tell it about the computer hardware. The MythTV backend handles recording shows and hence must be told about the TV capture card and the TV listings source.

  1. Start Applications -> System -> MythTV Backend Setup
  2. Click Yes to close any currently running mythbackend processes.
  3. Enter your "pvr" account password.
  4. Configure each of the backend screen settings as described below:
        1.  General
              On Miscellaneous Settings (near File Management Settings)
                Follow symbolic links when deleting files: Enable
              On Job Queue (Backend Specific)
                Max simultaneous jobs on this backend:  2
              On Job Queue (Global)
                Start auto-commercial-detection jobs when recording starts: Enable
              On Program Schedule Downloading Options
                Automatically update program listings: Enable
    
        2.  Capture Cards
    
            For Shaw Analog Cable (physical connection RHS from front of PVR):
              Select New Capture Card
                        Card type:  MPEG-2 encoder card
                DVB device number:  /dev/video2
              Select New Capture Card
                        Card type:  MPEG-2 encoder card
                DVB device number:  /dev/video3
    
            For ATSC Over-The-Air Antenna (connection LHS from front of PVR):
              Select New Capture Card
                        Card type:  DVB DTV capture card (v3.x)
                DVB device number:  /dev/dvb/adapter0/frontend0
                Recording Options
                  Max simultaneous recordings: 2
              Select New Capture Card
                        Card type:  DVB DTV capture card (v3.x)
                DVB device number:  /dev/dvb/adapter1/frontend0
                  Max simultaneous recordings: 2
    
        3.  Recording Profiles
              Choose MPEG-2 Encoders (PVR-x50, PVR-500)
                For each of Default, Live TV, High Quality, Low Quality,
                  Volume (%):  70
    
        4.  Video Sources
              NOTE:  Here you will use you schedules direct account
              New Video Source
                Schedules Direct - "Shaw Cable"
                Channel frequency table: us-cable
                Retrieve lineup
              New Video Source
                Schedules Direct - "HD Antenna"
                Channel frequency table: us-bcast
                Retrieve lineup
    
        5.  Input Connections
    
            For Shaw Cable (tuner on LHS near power supply):
              Choose [MPEG: /dev/video2](tuner) -> (none)
                    Video source: Shaw Cable
                            Name: Shaw Cable Tuner 1
                Starting Channel: 3
    
              Choose [MPEG: /dev/video3](tuner) -> (none)
                    Video source: Shaw Cable
                            Name: Shaw Cable Tuner 2
                Starting Channel: 3
    
            For ATSC Over-The-Air Antenna:
              Choose /dev/dvb/adapter0/frontend0
                    Video source: HD Antenna
                            Name: HDTuner1
                Starting Channel: 2_1
                  Input Priority: +1
    
              Choose /dev/dvb/adapter1/frontend0
                    Video source: HD Antenna
                            Name: HDTuner2
                Starting Channel: 2_1
                  Input Priority: +1
    
        6.  Channel Editor
              NOTE:  For Over-The-Air HDTV broadcasts do a full channel scan.
                     For Analog Cable TV fetch listings from source.
              Full Channel Scan
              Icon Download                         # ~pvr/.mythtv/channels/*.jpg
              Upload for others
              Delete unneeded channels
    
        7.  Storage Directories
              "Default" Storage Group directories
                 Add New Directory
                   /data/mythtv/recordings
                 Select /var/lib/mythtv/recordings and delete
              "LiveTV" Storage Group directories
                 Add New Directory
                   /data/mythtv/livetv
                 Select /var/lib/mythtv/livetv and delete
              "DB Backups" Storage Group directories
                 Add New Directory
                   /data/mythtv/db_backups          # On separate HDD
                 Select /var/lib/mythtv/db_backups and delete
              "Videos" Storage directories
                 Add New Directory
                   /data/mythtv/videos
                 Select /var/lib/mythtv/ and delete
    
        8.  System Events
              No changes.
        
  5. Press Esc until you exit the MythTV Backend.
  6. Enter your "pvr" account password to start mythv-backend.
  7. Click Yes to run mythfilldatabase.

X. Configure MythTV Frontend

The MythTV frontend handles the display of recordings from the backend. As such we need to configure the frontend for our preferences.

  1. Start Applications -> Multimedia -> MythTV Frontend
  2. Select Setup -> General
    On Database Configuration page:
    Note this page contains the database password if you should need it in the future.
  3. Select Setup -> Appearance
        On Appearance page:
                Paint engine:  Auto
        

    TIP:   Set Paint Engine to Auto Setting.

    Edit on January 18, 2014:
    Unfortunately with the MythTV 0.25 version included with Mythbuntu 12.04.2 I have discovered that the mythbackend setup screen does not work with the paint engine set to OpenGL. This used to work with MythTV 0.24 included with Mythbuntu 11.04. Further complicating this situation is that mythwelcome does not work with the paint engine set to Qt. A summary of which setting works with which component of MythTV follows:

    With OpenGL setting, mythwelcome screen works.
    With Qt setting, mythbackend setup screen works.
    With all settings, mythfrontend screen works.

    The solution to this problem is to choose the Auto setting so that MythTV can use the appropriate paint engine for each of mythbackend, mythfrontend, and mythwelcome.

    *** Need to reboot for changes in this setting to take effect ***

  4. Select Setup -> Audio
        On Audio System page:
           Audio output device:  ALSA:default
        On Audio mixer page:
           Master Mixer Volume:  70 -> 100
              PCM Mixer Volume:  81 -> 100
        
  5. Select Setup -> Video -> Playback
        On Playback Profiles (3/8) page:
          Select Content Video Playback Profile: OpenGL High Quality
        

    TIP:   The OpenGL High Quality setting fixes the video tearing problem with Intel GPUs.

    Be sure to navigate forward through all 8 pages in the playback section to ensure that the setting is saved.

Y. Setup Mythweather [Optional]

This plugin can show the weather on the MythTV frontend Information Center -> Weather page.

  1. Select Setup -> Info Center Settings -> Weather Settings -> Screen Settings
  2. Set Current Conditions to your location
  3. Set 6 Day Forecast to your location

Z. Setup Mtyhbrowser [Optional]

This plugin permits you to view web pages on the MythTV frontend Information Center -> Web page. Personally I use this page to stream TV shows that are hosted by my local television station web sites. Later on I describe how to create bookmarks.

  1. Select Setup -> Info Center Settings -> Web Settings
        Text Size:  1.7
        Enable browser plugins (Flash, etc): Enable
        

AA. Setup Mythmusic [Optional]

This plugin permits you to store and play music on the MythTV frontend Media Library -> Listen to Music page.

  1. Select Setup -> Media Settings -> Music Settings -> General Settings
        On General Settings screen
          Set storage directory to /data/mythtv/music
        On Player Settings screen
          Automatically play CDs: Enable
        On Ripper Settings screen
          Leave quality at "Low" = 128 kb/s
                           "Medium" = 192 kb/s
          Choose "MP3 lame"
          Disable "Eject automatically"
        

BB. Setup Mytharchive [Optional]

This plugin permits you to burn recordings to DVD-R on the MythTV frontend Optical Disks -> Archive Files -> Create DVD page.

  1. Select Setup -> Media settings -> Archive Files Settings
        On Mytharchive Settings screen
          MythArchive Temp Directory: /data/mythtv/mytharchive/temp
                                      # was /var/lib/mytharchive/temp
          Video Format: NTSC
        
    The NTSC video standard is used in North America. The PAL video standard is used in many other parts of the world.

CC. Create Mythbrowser Bookmarks [Optional]

Personally I create bookmarks to various locations for weather, and also links to TV stations such as: Global TV, CTV, City TV, and CBC.

I use the category zTV Shows so that this sorts to the end of the categories as I more often check the Weather.

  1. Select Information Center -> Web
  2. Press the M key to access the menu to add bookmarks and follow the prompts to create your a bookmark.
        Category:  Weather
            Name:  location
             URL:  link to weather web site
    
        Category:  zTV Shows
            Name:  TV station
             URL:  link to TV show web site
        
  3. Repeat above step for each bookmark you desire.

Note that you can use your mouse, keyboard, or remote control to navigate web sites in the Mythbrowser.

Installation Complete

Congratulations! You have now completed the steps to setting up an always on PVR, that should reboot and work properly after any power outages. Enjoy!

References

While setting up a Mythbuntu MythTV PVR, I found the following references useful:

Future Articles

In future articles, I plan to cover the following steps of our path:

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