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SageTV Linux Discussion related to the SageTV Media Center for Linux. Questions, issues, problems, suggestions, etc. relating to the SageTV Linux should be posted here.

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  #1  
Old 11-16-2010, 08:25 AM
clay3482 clay3482 is offline
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Question for Linux users

Hello

What I want to know is - with my current hardware setup is Sage TV going to work out of the box and be "wife friendly" if I buy it?

Computer - Acer Revo 3610
Tuner ------ Silicon Dust HomeRun Dual tuner
TV Signal -- Time Warner BASIC Cable
Video Out - HDMI
Audio out - HDMI
Remote --- Microsoft Vista Media Center Remote Control

In addition I have

External 1 TB ESATA HD Expansion
External DVD Read/Write Drive
External 1 TB USB HD Expansion

I have been using System 7 with Media Center on this machine but it crashed. I have spent the better part of the last week trying to get MythTV working flawlessly. While Everything is working It is not Wife Friendly and I wanted to look at Sage TV LINUX Edition before going back to Windows 7.

I have used
Linux MediaCenter Edition
Mythbuntu
Ubuntu 10.10 with Myth on top - current set up.

I am going to try KnoppMyth and MythDora next, if no go then I guess it is back to WIN MCE 7.

Thank You
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  #2  
Old 11-16-2010, 09:06 AM
loonsailor loonsailor is offline
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I'm running Sage on ubuntu 10.10, but I've only done it on one computer, with a much faster quad core AMD 905e. I'm purely guessing as to how well it will run on an atom, so take my comments for what they're worth.

It depends on what you want to do. I found it difficult to get placeshifter (the linux sage client) working to my satisfaction on my box, and really never did. So, I use the box purely as a server, and have three media extenders (2 HD200's and a HD300) in my home. Running that way, sage is really great and I'm very happy with it. I think, though I'm not sure, that your atom should work fine in that mode. I have two HD-HomeRuns and two HD-PVRs and all work fine. I found it much easier to get working than mythbuntu, and the wife is very happy.

If, on the other hand, you want a one-box solution and want to watch an HD tv plugged in to your revo, I think you'll find it challenging. Unfortunately, there is no free trial for the linux version, so you gotta pay to find out .

I run comskip (under wine) on my box, and it works fine as well. Comskip is much more compute-intensive than sage. One comskip job can run on each core, so I can be running three at a time in addition to sage's core (it only uses one). Your dual-core atom could run one but, again, it will take a while on the slower atom. This will be identical on myth or sage, but I think it's in areas like this, or transcoding, that you'll find the atom limited.
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  #3  
Old 11-16-2010, 12:01 PM
RocKKer RocKKer is offline
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My WAF (mine as well) is very high with using SageTV 7.0 on Ubuntu 10.10 Server and HD200's Media Extenders.

I also use the SageMC gui - for us, it has a simple elegance that we like.

I also use comskip - there is a SageTV 7.0 comskip plugin that will process super slow, so it may be a solution for the atom processor.
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  #4  
Old 11-16-2010, 12:27 PM
DevNull DevNull is offline
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My experiences are similar to loonsailor's. I am using a old Athlon64 2500+ for server duties running CentOS 5. It used to be a MythTV server, but I got tired of fiddling with the a/v codec/driver issues in Linux and switched to Sage.

A SageTV server running on Linux with HD200/HD300 extenders is a really nice combo. You get the speed/stability of a Linux server with the plug & go ease of a extender.

If extenders are not an option, then I'd think that a windows based solution might be the best route. I'm not saying that it's not possible with Linux, but rather typically people don't want to invest the time to make it happen. While the OS is free, most people's time is not.

One word of warning, it will most likely take more than a week with most any HTPC arrangement (linux or otherwise) to get all the bugs out and operating to your (and your wife's) liking.
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  #5  
Old 11-16-2010, 03:03 PM
clay3482 clay3482 is offline
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Thanks for the help.

I had a win XP media Center HTPC setup for years but when it went out I went and bought what I have now.

I know that it can be a lot of work but that is not a problem.

What is the difference between SageTV server and Sage TV OEM?

Is the server say like MythTV and it is the backend that stores all of the audio/video/ and it records The TV shows, etc etc

then you get one of the HDT 300's for the TV room and it will access all of the stuff from the server? Buying the HDT 300 is not a problem - The most important thing to me is the DVR functionality - It has to be able to record Live tv - does the Linux Server do that or do I need to buy the Linux Sage TV OEM?

I keep trying to find answers on the website about what I need and I get confused.

Just give me a list - LOL

Thanks

Clay
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  #6  
Old 11-16-2010, 03:50 PM
clay3482 clay3482 is offline
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OK

I have been doing a lot of reading and I think I have it.

What I need to do is

1 - Get Ubuntu Linux up and going on what is going to be my Linux Media Server.

2 - Download the Debian Media Server here
http://sagetv.com/postDL.php?tmpFile....0.23_i386.deb

3 - Install the Debian SageTv Media Server - this would include hooking up my HD HomeRun, External HD's etc etc

4 - Buy a Sage TV HD Theater 300 and put one into each room of the house that I want to access the Linux Media Server where all of my music, movies, and recorded TV shows are. I can also now because I am hooked into the Linux Sage Tv Media Server with the HDT300 access and control Live TV.
http://store.sagetv.com/mm5/merchant...tegory_Code=HD

Is that right?

Now if I buy the OEM linux version it basically is the server with the frontend together.

To get an example of how that might operate/look I could test it on a windows XP, Vista, or Win 7 Machine with the Sage Tv Media Center app installed.

Please let me know if I am right.

Thanks
Clay
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  #7  
Old 11-17-2010, 12:34 AM
loonsailor loonsailor is offline
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Sounds about right.
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  #8  
Old 11-18-2010, 02:33 PM
Grant.Edwards Grant.Edwards is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clay3482 View Post
OK

I have been doing a lot of reading and I think I have it.

What I need to do is

[...]
That's it. Just remember that you'll need hard-wired network
connections for HD playback.

Quote:
Now if I buy the OEM linux version it basically is the server with the
frontend together.
There's only one linux server. It comes in various different package
formats (tarball, .deb, etc.). Regardless of which format you
donwload, you'll need to buy a license for it -- there's no demo for
the linux server.

There's also a linux placeshifter client (a limited frontend that
can't do all of the things a normal frontend client can do). There is
no normal full-up client program for Linux (unless you count the
extenders, which are running Linux).

If you set up dvdreadfs, then you can even use the HD300 to play
commercial (encrypted) DVDs that are in the server's optical drives.

I'm running a Linux server (my general purpose Gentoo desktop machine,
FWIW) with HDHR tuner and two HD200's and it works brilliantly. The
only thing missing is Netflix support (no, I'm not interested in
setting up a Windows machine to run Playon).

The SageTv server is a bit memory hungry, so plan for about 1GB of RAM
just for SageTv.

--
Grant
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  #9  
Old 12-10-2010, 12:32 PM
mfaine mfaine is offline
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ZOTAC MAG
Ubuntu 10.10

I purchased SageTV for a Linux based HTPC that was running MythTV until I had some issues with 0.24. I felt I was spending more time tinkering with Myth than actually using it and I had hoped that SageTV would help.

I can't understate my disappointment with this software. Not only does it not tune analog SD cable with the same tuner that did work with MythTV 0.23 (sort of worked with 0.24) and also still works with TvTime but it also isn't good for use as a general media player/organizer.

I found the interface clunky, extremely unintuitive, and worse, it is exceptionally slow. Now remember, I completly removed Myth, mysql, apache, just about everything that was on the computer that uses resources and yet it is still a tremendous resource hog to the point that it isn't worth using. Just about any other free media player will outperform SageTV (Boxee, xbmc, MythVideo) recently I discovered the XBMC Dharma release and felt sick when I compared the performance/features of the two and thought about the $80 I spent on SageTV.

The one feature I'm lacking is SD analog tv tuning and I'll probably reinstall Mythtv (0.23) if only for this purpose and research integrating XBMC into mythtv.

You might be tempted to think that I just have a slow computer but I've had no performance issues to date with any other software and I've had a full MythTv Backend and Frontend running on this computer with Apache for MythWeb, and various others services all running with Boxee and/or XBMC and Chromium often running concurrently with no issues. Yet SageTV alone, with nothing else installed or running other than OS processes was sufficient to slow my computer to a level that I would consider unusable.

If you are using Linux unfortunately the only real choice right now for PVR software seems to be MythTV and for media playing and organizing you could use MythVideo which is very nice but I would suggest the newest XBMC Dharma release.

-Mark
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  #10  
Old 12-10-2010, 01:14 PM
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gplasky gplasky is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfaine View Post
You might be tempted to think that I just have a slow computer but I've had no performance issues to date with any other software and I've had a full MythTv Backend and Frontend running on this computer with Apache for MythWeb, and various others services all running with Boxee and/or XBMC and Chromium often running concurrently with no issues. Yet SageTV alone, with nothing else installed or running other than OS processes was sufficient to slow my computer to a level that I would consider unusable.
This statement really means next to nothing unless you quantify that with the actual specs of the machine you are trying to run on. If this is a clean Sage install with niothing else running on it I know people who had a stable installation that ran daily with a Athlon XP 1800 with 1 GB of RAM. And also specify your tuners so that they can be compared to supported hardware tuner list. Hardware-based tuners should never be an issue. But if you have a tuner that is not hardware based that can be contributing to your performance issue.

Gerry
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  #11  
Old 12-10-2010, 01:37 PM
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tmiranda tmiranda is offline
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I use an ancient 1.8GHz Celeron with 1 GB memory and performance is not bad. Something is not right with your setup.

First place I'd look is at the java heap. I think the default value is 256MB but I'm not certain. The value can be changed by altering the sage startup script.

The next place I'd look is at the JVM. What JRE did you install?

There are many users with loads more Linux experience than me so I'm sure somebody will be able to help you.

Tom
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  #12  
Old 12-10-2010, 04:02 PM
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stuckless stuckless is offline
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[QUOTE=mfaine;468935]ZOTAC MAG
Ubuntu 10.10
/QUOTE]

When you run top, is the java process running at 100%?
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  #13  
Old 12-11-2010, 09:02 AM
mfaine mfaine is offline
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[QUOTE=stuckless;468981]
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfaine View Post
ZOTAC MAG
Ubuntu 10.10
/QUOTE]

When you run top, is the java process running at 100%?
I'm sorry I wasn't really looking for help diagnosing a problem only providing my take on whether the OP should look at SageTV. I don't recall Java running at 100% but I don't even have the software installed anymore. I was using Hauppauge HVR 950Q but even after I gave up on any TV capability and tried to just settle for using SageTV as a media/player organizer I still had very poor performance compared to other such software that is available for free.

-Mark
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  #14  
Old 12-11-2010, 09:42 AM
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stuckless stuckless is offline
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[QUOTE=mfaine;469078]
Quote:
Originally Posted by stuckless View Post

I'm sorry I wasn't really looking for help diagnosing a problem only providing my take on whether the OP should look at SageTV. I don't recall Java running at 100% but I don't even have the software installed anymore. I was using Hauppauge HVR 950Q but even after I gave up on any TV capability and tried to just settle for using SageTV as a media/player organizer I still had very poor performance compared to other such software that is available for free.

-Mark
I only ask because, I use ubuntu 10.10, and I've been SageTV under linux long before 10.10 as well. I have setup MythTV a number of times as well, and my experiences with MythTV are very similar to your experiences with SageTV... ie unbearable sluggishness. I just assumed that's how mythtv worked.

On one Ubuntu setup though (on a different machine), one of my cpus spiked to 100% after installing it. It turned out that for some reason, sage was going into an infinite loop, which I could tell from the logs because the sagetv_0.txt was spitting the same message over and over. Thing is, I ran the setup this way for a week before I realized it wasn't normal. The menus were sluggish, etc, but I just assumed it was my workstation. Turns out a simple change to the Sage.properties fixed the issue. (had something to do with disabling hardware accelerated ui rendering, i think)

My old sagetv server was a single core p4 2.0, and I've never had an issue with that machine as well. Currently I'm running a quad core, simply so that I can run comskip as well.

I certainly feel you pain... I've felt it every time I've installed MythTV, so I know how you feel when you install something that you think should "just work", but it "just doesn't"
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