Mythtv on open suse 10.2 a fresh start

Introduction

After having spent the winter mostly doing other stuff, like getting the boat ready for the new season I recently decided to do something about my mythtv box which I had almost but not quite running as I liked in the beginning of december last year.

This is what I mean by “not quite running as I liked” by the way:

  1. I did not get the ALLNET 0271 wireless NIC to work with OpenSuse, I felt I made some progress, but never quite got it to work even though I could connect from a knoppix cd (actually knoppix V 5.01) booted on the same machine.
  2. I did not get the remote control configured so I used a keyboard and mouse to program recordings, and play them.
    1. I did confirm with Yast that key events got received correctly by the driver so I was probably close there.
  3. I was not really happy with the boot screen, or the resolution when booting and running anything other than the mythfrontend.
    1. I had to manually bypass a warning about graphics modes during boot.
  4. I did not untill later after the DVB-T tuner had stopped working for me, get the software installed for modifying the BIOS wakeup time, so I while I actually used it to record tv I always had to manually turn the machine on before the recording should start. As mentioned I later got this to work, so I am confident I will get it to work again, and will of course describe it here when I get to that point.

The box would not boot, probably due to the fact that I had installed on the SATA drive, and having the bios reset and not getting the right boot order. I finally gave up on it and reinstalled open suse 10.2, so now I have relative fresh install to start from. This is already a while ago in which I have not even powered up the box, so I hope I haven’t forgotten something essential.

Because this time I will try to record what I have done here in my blog so I and others may benefit from it. The progress might be slow since I get scouled at by my wife if I spend too much time by the computer, and I also have the boat in the water now. Oh, and then there is this half marathon thing early next month whivh I am training for. link: http://avis-maraton.net/.

This is the hardware in the box:

Motherboard: ASUS A8N-SLI premium

CPU: Athlon 3200+

TV tuner: Hauppauge WinTV Nova-T DVB-T model 909

Wlan: ALLNet 0271

OS: Open suse 10.2

The last time I installed this box I referred a lot to these web sites:

I did not however succeed last time in getting my wlan ALLNET 0271 to connect to my WAP. I did try to install knoppix V (whatever was the latest version around november / december 2006) and that successfully connected to my WAP, so there certainly is hope. I just couldn’t get it to work with Suse 10.1 which I was using at that time, nor with Open suse 10.2 which I tried with the last time. Hopefully this time I will manage to get it right. (or buy another wlan nic which “just works” with Open Suse 10.2, time will tell).

This time I will try the suggestions from http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/index.php/Opensuse_10.2.

First thing I did those weeks ago after reinstalling, was to add repositories to Yast (the Suse package manager):

I found most of these as well as a description on how to add them at this site: http://en.opensuse.org/Additional_YaST_Package_Repositories

Then I went to nvidia’s homepage to get the binary nvidia driver for the graphics card. I added the nvidia package repository to Yast and let Yast install the driver for me.

Then I installed mythtv. This is where I start today.

While I have been writing the previous text, Yast has installed all the suggested packages in http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/index.php/Opensuse_10.2.#IntroDuction

Uhoh the first suggested test, namely >dmesg |grep ivtv, did not produce any output because the ivtv module had not been installed yet. So I tried (as root) modprobe ivtv, but then I got this error:

FATAL Could not load /lib/modules/2.6.18.8-0.1-default/modules.dep: no such file or directory

find / -name modules.dep revealed the problem: modules.dep was located in /lib/modules/2.6.18.8-0.3-default/modules.dep

apparently a newer kernel version, which uname -a confirmed was the running kernel.

Ok, do I really need to reboot to get this right (I did upgrade the kernel with libzypp earlier tonight, and it stalled forever at 99% so I eventually killed it) ?

Ok, a reboot made sure it looked in the right place for modules.dep, and I could modprobe ivtv successfully.

I rmmod’ed it again, because I want to see what Yast can do about the card. According to the section on DVB-T the Hauppauge Nova-T which I am using should just work with OpenSuse 10.2.

I went to Yast -> Hardware -> TV Card and configured the tv card which was listed as the following:

Listing:

0 – TV CX23880/1/2/3 PCI Video and Audio Decoder

0 – DVB Nova-T DVB-T model 909

I configured the first device (Video and Audio Decoder) like this:

Vendor, had “Autodetected” card highlighed and the Card was listed so I did nothing here, clicked “next”.

On the next screen I clicked “connected to” and selected the onboard sound card, clicked “next”

On the next screen I selected “Use IRC” and clicked “test”, I connected the IRC receiver to the tuner, and clicked a few keys on the remote and saw the correct keys get listed on the screen.

That was it for the decoder, and I clicked “next” and selected the DVB-T card (by the way just to avoid misunderstanding I only have this one DVB-T card installed in the machine. Why it gets listed as two devices I don’t quite know.

This card also had the vendor “autodetected correctly” so next screen:

Selected Audio “not connected”, next screen:

Hmm now I don’t see the screen from last time where I selected which drivers to use! ???

It’s late so I stop now.

Sunday 06.05.2007 (danish time notation 😉

Today I found and installed nvram-wakeup, which at least on my motherboard (last time I tried this) is necessary to have the wakeup time set programmatically. Even though I think I sent my nvram config to the project the last time I dud this, I found that nvram could not identify my motherboard, and I couldn’t quite remember what I did last time to resolve this. But google helped me find this page: http://www.linuxtv.org/vdrwiki/index.php/Nvram_wakeup, where they suggest using the helper program “guess-helper” if nvram-wakeup can not detect one’s motherboard correctly. I did that the last time, and will now do it again. This will cost a number of reboots, with different manually set wakeup time in the BIOS each time. As the web site states, and I will restate: “Do this on your own responsibility” If you write bad values in your flash, you might need a hardware flash burner to revive your PC. You have been warned.

Update: (08.05.2007)

After I wrote the last entry I successfully (at least I think so, as I went through the BIOS detection procedure prompted by guess-helper, but did not actually test afterwards that it worked) installed nvram-wakeup, and configured mythtv to use it.

That involved instructing mythtv to use the time format: time_t, and setting the wakeup command to something like (I am writing from memory so the syntax might have slipped slightly, I will check this later…): nvram-wakeup -A -C /etc/nvram-wakeup.conf -s$(($time + 300))
I Used the command mythtvsetup as user mythtv to configure mythtv.

Then I configured mythtv to use the DVB tuner (several options were available, but I chose one which was mysetiously listed as “analog video” but which listed the name of the card as Hauppauge wintv nova-t DVB-T, so I thought I would give it a shot anyway as it was the best match apart from the “analog” part…

I shut down the machine, disconnected it and carried it to the living room where I was baffled to find that it would not start. I do not mean that it would not boot, but that it would not turn on the power !!!

So right now I am looking to borrow a spare power supply to see if it will then turn on the machine again. This machine with all the parts in it is less than 2 years old (about 18 months actually…) and I have started the machine maybe 4-5 times during the past winter.

Update 10.05.2007

Yesterday I connected another power supply, and successfully powered up the box. So it was indeed the power supply which for reasons unknown decided to die, between power off and power up. I have contacted the shop where I bought it to find out if I can get it fixed or replaced for free. I am not sure about that though.

16.05.2007, 22:51

Yesterday I installed KUBUNTU on my new USB pendrive, and since my other computer won’t boot from anything USB, Itriedit today on my mythtv box, and successfully booted into Kubuntu on the USB pendrive. How bout that.

Anyway, from Kubuntu I tried to connect to my wireless access point with knetwork manager, and no problem. I connected and was surfing the internet in less than a minute, including the time to select and verify a password for kwallet to hold the password to the wap.

And this was so easy after all the troubles I had with open suse 10.2, and still no wireless internet…

Well, I just tried and when I switched to knetwork managed internet, I got connected just as easy as from Kubuntu.

So my update for the mythbox, is I can now remove wireless internet from my list of things that I need to get to work. Yeah.

I am not going to do more now, since it is already late, but my mood was definitely lifted significantly just now.

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