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Hardware Support Discussions related to using various hardware setups with SageTV products. Anything relating to capture cards, remotes, infrared receivers/transmitters, system compatibility or other hardware related problems or suggestions should be posted here.

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  #1  
Old 01-11-2011, 10:05 AM
btrumsey btrumsey is offline
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Change channels on DirecTV STB via ethernet

I recently added an HD-PVR to my system to capture HD video from my DirecTV H24 STB and was having considerable troubles getting the HD-PVR IR Blaster to work reliably for me. A few days ago I stumbled across this thread and decided to give it a try on SageTV. Much to surprise I was able to get this working fairly easily and I thought I would share this with others that might benefit.

I have only tested this on my H24, but based on the earlier thread it should also work on an H21 or H23 STB.

How To Do It

1. Install the EXEMultiTunerPlugin
Grab a copy of the EXEMultiTunerPlugin.dll from this forum thread and place the file in your SageTV\Common directory. I opted to go with the MultiTuner versus the single tuner DLL because I am anticipating that I will have multiple STBs to control in the future.

2. Edit the Registry
If the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Frey Technologies\Common\EXEMultiTunerPlugin does not already exist, go ahead and create that. Once in place, create a new String Value under this key

name: command
data: DirecTVMultiChg.bat %DEVICE% %CHANNEL%

3. Download the attached dtvTune.zip file
This archive contains three files

a. StubDevice.ir: This file should be placed in the directory SageTV\Common\RemoteCodes\EXEMultiTunerPlugin (go ahead and create it if it doesn't already exist). The filename and first entry in the file should correspond to the device name in the sage.properties file (not having changed anything this was 'StubDevice' for me).

b. DirecTVMultiChg.bat: This DOS batch file is called when a channel change request is made. Place this file in your SageTV\SageTV directory. You will need to edit this file to provide the IP address for each of the STBs along with their corresponding capture device name.

I would recommend using your routers Address Reservation function to give your STB a static IP address, otherwise your STB IP address will be subject to change.

c. dtvTune.exe: This is the executable that actually sends the channel change request via HTTP to the STB. This is called from the DirecTVMultiChg.bat file and should be installed in your SageTV\SageTV directory. The command line usage is

dtvTune.exe -ip <IP address> -channel <channel number>

Note that this executable does require the .NET 4 Framework. If you don't already have that installed, you can get it from Microsoft here.

4. Restart SageTV
Once all of these pieces are in place, restart SageTV. You should now see the EXEMultiTunerPlugin as an choice for your tuning options.


I have found this to be more reliable than the built in HD-PVR IR Blaster, cheaper than a USB-UIRT and easy for wire management (assuming you already have an ethernet going to your STB).

Hopefully others can benefit.

Good luck,
-Bret
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  #2  
Old 01-11-2011, 08:47 PM
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toricred toricred is offline
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This is what I've been looking for ever since they activated the ethernet ports. Now I have a project for this weekend.
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  #3  
Old 01-11-2011, 10:43 PM
dravenone dravenone is offline
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NICE!! Thank you for posting this!
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  #4  
Old 01-12-2011, 09:32 AM
harrijay harrijay is offline
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How is the response time as compared to Serial? I know it takes a little bit of time to change the channel with serial and if this improves it I will make the switch.

Thanks,
Jayson
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  #5  
Old 01-12-2011, 10:49 AM
GbrNole GbrNole is offline
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another compelling reason for me to dump comcast and head to directv!

one reason i keep comcast is the ease and efficiency of firewire channel changing - i presume this will allow you also to use a 64-bit OS provided your tuner cards support it etc? right? that is one thing i can't do with firewire!
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  #6  
Old 01-12-2011, 11:27 AM
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SHS SHS is offline
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Hmmm very instanting now wondering how well this work with Cinema Connection Kit which free up ethernet ports.
The downside DirecTV New HD is no S-Video / Digital Optical output on there lates model H24-100 there only Digital Audio (Coax)so you end up need a Optical Toslink to Coaxial (RCA) Digital Audio Converter.

Last edited by SHS; 01-12-2011 at 11:49 AM.
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  #7  
Old 01-12-2011, 11:30 AM
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Skirge01 Skirge01 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GbrNole View Post
another compelling reason for me to dump comcast and head to directv!

one reason i keep comcast is the ease and efficiency of firewire channel changing - i presume this will allow you also to use a 64-bit OS provided your tuner cards support it etc? right? that is one thing i can't do with firewire!
Keep in mind that the DirecTV boxes have been able to use serial tuning for a very long time now and it's extremely reliable. I don't believe I've ever missed a recording, due to a failure of the serial tuning.
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  #8  
Old 01-12-2011, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skirge01 View Post
Keep in mind that the DirecTV boxes have been able to use serial tuning for a very long time now and it's extremely reliable. I don't believe I've ever missed a recording, due to a failure of the serial tuning.
That maybe ture there Skirge01 but you need look bigger picture here serial tuning dose take up space/more wires and just becuase the most reliable way is PCI or PCIe serial card where usb to serial device which are not 100% reliable then this 3rd option give us a another option which be more reliable then usb to serial device.
We know Dishnetwork has limit (6) receivers per account where DirecTV dosen't limit the number of receivers it just costs you $5 per box.
Hope this year we see some sandy bridge motherboard with 8 PCIe slot then pop in 8 Hauppauge Colossus HD-PVR PCIe card ho how so sweet the Ultimate Killer HD PVR server will be hehe.

Last edited by SHS; 01-12-2011 at 12:25 PM.
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  #9  
Old 01-12-2011, 12:36 PM
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Skirge01 Skirge01 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SHS View Post
That maybe ture there Skirge01 but you need look bigger picture here serial tuning dose take up space/more wires and just becuase the most reliable way is PCI or PCIe serial card where usb to serial device which are not 100% reliable then this 3rd option give us a another option which be more reliable then usb to serial device.
We know Dishnetwork has limit (6) receivers per account where DirecTV dosen't limit the number of receivers it just costs you $5 per box.
Hope this year we see some sandy bridge motherboard with 8 PCIe slot then pop in 8 Hauppauge Colossus HD-PVR PCIe card ho how so sweet the Ultimate Killer HD PVR server will be hehe.
My original point was just to let the guy know that serial tuning was available and has been for a while now. Since this ethernet tuning seemed to be the reason for potentially dropping Comcast, I thought it worthwhile to mention.

As far as more cables, though, I'm not sure why someone using SageTV would have their DirecTV box hooked up to the network in the first place. (Interested to know, though.) So, my initial thought is that you will either have a serial cable OR an ethernet cable hooked up to the STB.

You also mentioned reliability and I don't recall anyone mentioning that as an issue with serial tuning a DirecTV box. Like I said, I've never had a single issue with it.
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  #10  
Old 01-12-2011, 12:58 PM
zoundz zoundz is offline
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Drifting a bit sideways from the topic, but relevant nonetheless: can anyone point me at the interface specs for the SageTV tuner .dll's. While the solution posted in this thread is a good start, it turns out that the http interface to the current DirectTV receivers is quite a bit more capable than just changing channels. It would be incredibly useful to have a specific .dll for the purpose instead of using the exetuner dll. Amongst other things, the http interface is capable of doing a <poweron> command which could easily be sent prior to each channel change, thus eliminating the possibility of the STB having decided to shut down on its own. The whole thing works just fine with WGET and other command line http interfaces.

In case anyone else is interested, here's a link to the doc describing the http interface: http://www.sbcatest.com/TechUpdates/...20Set-V1.0.pdf
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  #11  
Old 01-12-2011, 01:13 PM
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SHS SHS is offline
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This where Cinema Connection Kit or also know as the DirecTV DECA Broadband come in play there be no need run thoses ethernet cable in stead you use RJ6 cable as your ethernet cable see here under specifications
http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp...omponents&sku=
How ever it best have Internal ones like H24/HR24 which is best way to go othere then that you rack up $60 per receivers so in long run ethernet cable and switch hub would be much cheaper.

Last edited by SHS; 01-12-2011 at 01:27 PM.
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  #12  
Old 01-12-2011, 02:02 PM
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Skirge01 Skirge01 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SHS View Post
This where Cinema Connection Kit or also know as the DirecTV DECA Broadband come in play there be no need run thoses ethernet cable in stead you use RJ6 cable as your ethernet cable see here under specifications
http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp...omponents&sku=
How ever it best have Internal ones like H24/HR24 which is best way to go othere then that you rack up $60 per receivers so in long run ethernet cable and switch hub would be much cheaper.
Like my network comment, if we're talking about a SageTV setup, why would you have a DirecTV DVR? BTW, the H24 isn't a DVR.

None of this has anything to do with the point of this thread, though.
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  #13  
Old 01-12-2011, 05:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skirge01 View Post
None of this has anything to do with the point of this thread, though.
Doing it with out using any ethernet cable

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skirge01 View Post
Like my network comment, if we're talking about a SageTV setup, why would you have a DirecTV DVR? BTW, the H24 isn't a DVR..
Your not get what I'm saying
Let I have 4 DirecTV H24 and I have one DirecTV DECA Broadband which I do have and I use Bret the above tuner idea there be no need for any ethernet cable going from receivers to hub or routers only small DECA Broadband get up to hub or routers which server all four receivers by RG6 cable.
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  #14  
Old 01-14-2011, 11:20 AM
btrumsey btrumsey is offline
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In response to the question about how long it takes to change channels... the box itself only takes about a second to change (I don't know how that compares to the serial connection). However, changing the channel through SageTV requires ~4seconds, as it stops the recording on the HD-PVR, changes the channel, and then restarts the HD-PVR.
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  #15  
Old 01-14-2011, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by btrumsey View Post
In response to the question about how long it takes to change channels... the box itself only takes about a second to change (I don't know how that compares to the serial connection). However, changing the channel through SageTV requires ~4seconds, as it stops the recording on the HD-PVR, changes the channel, and then restarts the HD-PVR.
That is petty normal for sagetv and all hardware encoder requires ~4seconds.
Oh I belive it gose more like this stops the recording on the HD-PVR, then reset firmware/flush or clear memory then restarts the HD-PVR new recoding then changes the channel.
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Old 01-14-2011, 04:34 PM
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toricred toricred is offline
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I am having a lot of difficulty getting EXEMultiTuner set up right. I've installed the DLL, made the registry change, and removed and re-added my tuners, and restarted Sage. For some reason no changes are happening. Isn't there something I need to do in Sage.properties? By the way I'm on Win7 64 bit. Is it possible that I need to put the bat file and the exe under Program Files?
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Old 01-14-2011, 05:44 PM
Graygeek Graygeek is offline
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Originally Posted by toricred View Post
I am having a lot of difficulty getting EXEMultiTuner set up right. I've installed the DLL, made the registry change, and removed and re-added my tuners, and restarted Sage. For some reason no changes are happening. Isn't there something I need to do in Sage.properties? By the way I'm on Win7 64 bit. Is it possible that I need to put the bat file and the exe under Program Files?
Had same issue a while back under W7 64 bit ... went back to XP for other reasons for now .... but I noted the quote below in another thread and tucked it away for when I try W7 64bit again soon.

"If you're running 64 bit, the registry locations are a bit different. There will be a Wow6432Node folder under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE that you will have to use.
i.e. if the instructions say HKLM\Software\Frey Technologies use KLM\Wow6432Node\Software\Frey Technologies "

Please post back if this works
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Old 01-14-2011, 06:26 PM
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Actually I did take the registry path change into account. What I had not done was configuring the .ir files. Now it's working perfectly.
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  #19  
Old 01-14-2011, 09:58 PM
teesee150 teesee150 is offline
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This is absolutely fantastic. Now I'm just waiting for the HD-PVR Colossus to come out and I can setup the perfect HTPC. The serial tuners and HD-PVRs were becoming a huge mess.
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Old 01-15-2011, 01:25 AM
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Ahh, if only the Dish network box Ethernet ports were used for more than just phoning home.. ;-)
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