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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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Old 02-21-2021, 02:44 PM
Striker:WG Striker:WG is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 472
SageTV on Linux for Dummies?

So I'll be the first to admit that I know very little about Linux. I can fumble my way around given enough documentation to get things to work, but when things go awry, I'm not sure where to turn. Please consider using crayons and finger puppets when explaining things to me.

I've been running Sage using a Java8 docker on Unraid which was working great until the Unraid DVB package got discontinued and FireWire support went away. I'm trying to resolve this by building a Linux VM (Unbuntu 20.04) and passing through my PCI FireWire card to the VM.

I've got the VM built and the PCI card passed through.

I'm trying to install Sage and I think I've done everything properly, however when I start one of my Sage clients, I don't see the server for me to connect to.

When I run systemctl status sagetv, I get the following so I think it's running properly:

● sagetv.service - LSB: SageTV Server
     Loaded: loaded (/etc/init.d/sagetv; generated)
     Active: active (exited) since Sun 2021-02-21 14:27:27 CST; 11min ago
       Docs: man:systemd-sysv-generator(8)
    Process: 696 ExecStart=/etc/init.d/sagetv start (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)

Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder sagetv[698]: Changing to SageTV directory /opt/sagetv/server
Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder sagetv[700]: chmod: cannot access '/var/media/videos': No such file or directory
Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder sagetv[701]: chmod: cannot access '/var/media/pictures': No such file or directory
Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder sagetv[703]: chmod: cannot access '/var/media/music': No such file or directory
Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder sagetv[696]: .
Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder systemd[1]: Started LSB: SageTV Server.
Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder sagetv[707]: cat: activkey: No such file or directory
Feb 21 14:27:27 SageEncoder sagetv[706]: Executing pre-scripts
Feb 21 14:27:28 SageEncoder sagetv[706]: Starting server mode
Feb 21 14:27:31 SageEncoder sagetv[735]: Main is starting
I've confirmed the UFW is disabled, so I shouldn't be getting blocked.

When I try connecting to I get nothing (I was hoping for some web server confirmation that the service is running similar to the docker container).

Anyone have any suggestions for what my next steps are?
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Old 02-21-2021, 03:43 PM
Striker:WG Striker:WG is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 472

I found the answer I was looking for in here:

I guess I had the wrong version of Java installed!
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Old 02-22-2021, 03:16 AM
Striker:WG Striker:WG is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 472
Alright, while I did solve my Sage startup issue, I have not been able to resolve my Firewire issue which was the reason for this entire venture.

I have managed to passthrough the USB bus from my motherboard, so all four HD PVR units are properly seen by the Linux VM.

I am using the same method to passthrough my PCI Firewire card.

While I have four STB's connected via Firewire, I only see /etc/fw0.

In Sage, I can select a Firewire STB as a tuning device. I see two devices, although the ID on one of them is all zero's. The other one is odd as each time I reboot the VM, the ID of this STB changes. Channel changing does not work, so this does not appear to be a correct ID either.

I know this hardware works as Firewire channel changing was working prior to Unraid DVB being discontinued. I've done some reading and I see that there was an "old" and "new" Firewire driver stack. Currently I have the "new" one enabled, however I cannot figure out how to disable it and enable the "old" stack to test and see if that resolves the issue.

I'm open to suggestions. Hoping that someone with more Linux experience might have some ideas on where I'm going wrong.

All help is appreciated!
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Old 06-18-2021, 02:20 PM
Galaxysurfer Galaxysurfer is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Calgary, AB CANADA
Posts: 396
I feel your pain. I was in same boot when I took the plunge into using Linux as my daily driver instead of Windows. I landed in Mx Linux which is fairly decent as a Debian based distro.
It is a popular option for those new to Linux world. I use it as my base for Sagetv, and though it isn't meant for servers it is going pretty well for me. I am doing a very basic setup with OTA so I can't offer any help with other bridge tech needed for cable boxes etc. None the less, let me know if I can lend a hand.

Last edited by Galaxysurfer; 06-18-2021 at 02:22 PM.
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Old 06-18-2021, 07:09 PM
Striker:WG Striker:WG is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 472
Thanks for the reply!

In the end I was able to work with an Unraid developer to get the FireWire drivers published as a separate plugin and that got my Docker back to working order.

I never did solve getting the FireWire working in the Ubuntu VM.
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