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SageTV Software Discussion related to the SageTV application produced by SageTV. Questions, issues, problems, suggestions, etc. relating to the SageTV software application should be posted here. (Check the descriptions of the other forums; all hardware related questions go in the Hardware Support forum, etc. And, post in the customizations forum instead if any customizations are active.)

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  #1  
Old 04-09-2022, 01:12 AM
Striker:WG Striker:WG is offline
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Weird HDPVR Recording Issue

So I started mucking around with my setup to try and get some Colossus cards working via a Windows Network Encoder. Somewhere in this process, one of my HDPVR's has started doing something I can't fully understand.

I think that while Sage is going through all the normal motions of starting recording with the HD PVR (bling light goes on, channel changes) but the signal i'm getting is not what the cable box is producing. I can only assume it is capturing a different feed via Firewire since I have Firewire connected for channel changing. What is really weird, is the signal is stuck on PBS regardless of what channel the cable box is tuned to. I've connected a monitor directly to the cable box to confirm that it is not on PBS and I've rebooted everything several times.

I've edited the sage.properties file and deleted all the media encoder lines and reconfigured all my tuners and the same issue is persisting. Is additional information stored about how the tuner should behave somewhere else? What am I missing?
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  #2  
Old 04-09-2022, 06:54 PM
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KryptoNyte KryptoNyte is offline
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I think you'll need to expand on your complete system and all tuners available at that location, include any info you can provide on your network tuner system.
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Old 04-09-2022, 09:20 PM
Striker:WG Striker:WG is offline
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sure, happy to share any info that might be helpful, just didn't want to inundate people with an overly long starting post

I'm running an Unraid server that hosts the Stuckless Java 8 docker (yeah, I know, I should migrate to the new dockers but I haven't done it yet).

I use Firewire to do my channel changing. This is achieved by having the Firewire drivers loaded in Unraid and using the Firewire channel changing built into Sage.

I have 4 Motorolla DCX-3200m cable boxes getting signal from Shaw cable systems. All four cable boxes are connected to the server via Firewire.

I was using 4 HD PVR units (all first gen, varying hardware revisions) to do my capture.

Everything was working other than some hiccups with the HD PVR's when they weren't getting a perfect signal off the cable boxes.

I acquired 2 Colossus PVR cards (first gen) that I wanted to use instead of 2 of the HD PVR units to see if they would perform better, however there are no Linux drivers available for the Colossus cards. I built a 32bit Windows 10 PC out of old hardware and installed the Colossus cards. Got Sage installed and working, setup the Colossus cards and Windows based Firewire channel changing. I disconnected 2 of the HD PVR units from the server and moved the cable boxes over to the Colossus cards. Both cards were able to channel change and capture from the Windows box. I switched the properties flag to make the Windows box a network encoder and set to work on the main server. I discovered the two Colossus cards as available network encoders and set them up on the server (at this point I discovered that you can still have the server do the channel changing for the network encoders). This is when things went sideways.

Things appeared to be working, but I guess I wasn't checking too closely. I thought I'd confirmed proper channel changing on all four tuners, but I must have missed something. The evening rolled around and some shows were supposed to record, however the channel changing was not working properly on all tuners so I started to investigate. After several rounds of trying to remove/add tuners and reconfigure Firewire tuning I was not having any luck with things working properly. I've tried modifying the sage.properties file to remove all info about tuners to try re-setting them up from scratch to no avail. Most recently I've powered down the network encoder machine to try and simplify and ensure that I've got at least two working HD PVR's before adding the network encoders back into the mix.

Currently, 1 HD PVR works without issue. The second one is doing what I described in the original post. The logs indicate that the tuner is being enabled. The channel change command is sent properly, however the signal that I get back is not the right channel. It's not even for a channel that any of my cable boxes are set to. The only explanation that I can come up with, is that it's somehow pulling the signal over Firewire instead of from the HDPVR, but I honestly don't know how that could be happening without seeing evidence of it in the log files. To see if it was something specific to entries for that HD PVR I tried swapping it with one of my now spare HD PVR units. This results in something slightly more re-assuring but still equally frustrating. The HD PVR goes through the same start-up steps but then gives a null error.

So this long winded post catches you up to where I'm at now. Honestly not sure why I can't just get back to where I was or what additional information pertaining to tuners is stored in Sage outside of the sage.properties file that I could possibly try resetting.

I may just have to take the plunge, setup a new docker and start from scratch, but i'm concerned that if there are possibly things in the wiz.bin, I may end up just moving the problem to the new docker instance.

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  #4  
Old 04-10-2022, 07:34 AM
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KryptoNyte KryptoNyte is offline
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I don't know anything about the unraid/docker stuff, but that PBS channel feed is curious and interesting.

- If you're watching live TV, the incidental PBS channel, and manually change the channel on the STB (or all the STB's for that matter) with the remote, what happens?

- While watching that same PBS channel live, what happens if you pull all the firewire cables out of the server?

I went a similar route, from HDPVR to Colossus internal tuner cards were great, right up until they aren't a couple days later. I had to schedule a Sage server reboot every day to keep the Colossus card running almost reliably.

In your final SageTV system, do you require 5.1 channel audio or could you live with stereo audio instead? If you could live with stereo audio, you're totally set up for one of these:
https://forums.sagetv.com/forums/sho...&postcount=266
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  #5  
Old 04-10-2022, 04:56 PM
Striker:WG Striker:WG is offline
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Yeah, I've looked at those iptv tuners and considered buying one, but I'm not sold on giving up the 5.1 sound, and we keep debating about cutting the cord on cable altogether, so not sure I want to invest that kind of cash in something I might abandon the next time our contract is up.

So, I went through and checked all my cabling one last time, and I did in fact have a different cable box than I thought connected to the HDPVR in question.

The reason why the PBS broadcast was confusing me so much is because it was on channel 204 (the HD broadcast) and in my mind, PBS is channel 3, because ya know, that's where I watched Sesame Street 40 years ago and nothing should ever change.

Thanks for the responses KryptoNyte, appreciate you taking the time to respond even though this was entirely a self inflicted issue.

Let this be a lesson folks, nothing good happens after 2am, especially not re-configuring your Sage setup!

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