MythTV 30 on Ubuntu 19.04 Notes

These are some notes on a new MythTV install to replace an older one. MythTV 30 is provided with Ubuntu 19.04, however, it does not seem to have HDHomeRun support, it’s not an option when selecting capture cards. The solution is to instead use the MythTV PPA provided version. This was done on a clean install after finding the Ubuntu provided version wouldn’t work. MythTV Wiki Ubuntu link.

Add the PPA, this was done by:
add-apt-repository ppa:mythbuntu/30

MythTV, database, and dependencies were installed with:

apt install mythtv-backend-master
apt install libhdhomerun-dev

Any setup should be done using the mythtv user. It’s automatically set up with the configuration and is the user the daemons run as.

Configure as usual, below are the issue encountered.

HDHomeRun Issues

I ran in to trouble with only being able to record 2 channels at at time (or watch 1 and record 2). Only two tuners were available despite having 4.

Two HDHomeRun’s with two tuners each will be used. When adding a HDHomeRun, the tuner is not specified as it was in previous version. This is not clear when setting it up, there’s an option to set the number of simultaneous recordings, but this is not correct. Simply add the a HDHomeRun capture card for the number of tuners it can provide, it will automatically select a tuner not in use on the device. This is to allow it to work better if the tuner is being shared with another system since requesting a specific tuner will more likely result in it not being available (tuner 1 is in use, 2 is free, asking for 1 denies access vs asking for any available tuner).

In my case I’m using 2 HDHomeRuns with 2 tuners each. So I added each twice for a total of 4 capture cards. The device will provide access to a tuner if available up to 2 automatically.

Each entry can have multiple HDHomeRuns, so adding two with the two HDHomeRuns included will likely work the same as adding it 4 with 1 each, this has not been tested.

Schedules Direct Problems

I use Schedules Direct for schedule data. It was set up as a video source in set up. However, it would not update. mythfilldatabase would run, but report no channels configured to use grabber and the sumamry would show all 0’s – nothing added. The web guide also showed NO DATA.

Apparently the format Schedules Direct is using is being phased out in favor of XMLTV. The solution is to switch to XMLTV.

Solution found here:

apt install xmltv

XMLTV needs to be configured, as the mythtv user, run:

tv_grab_zz_sdjson –configure –config-file ~/.mythtv/<NAME OF VIDEO SOURCE>.xmltv

In my case I’ll be naming the video source schedulesdirect, so schedulesdirect.xmltv is used.

It will then prompt for configuration, the options selected were:

Cache file: <press enter>

Select channel ID format: selected 0, the default

Select previously shown format: 0 – Date Only

Schedules Direct username: your username

Schedules Direct password: your password

Edit account lineups: add, the default

Zip Code: your zip code

Lineups are listed, enter number of desired lineup. In my case USA-OTA-ZIPCODE for over the air.

Current lineups enabled is shown, just this one, Edit accoutn lineups: press enter to continue, not adding more.

Choose lineups to use for this configuration, yes for the one listed/selected previously.

XMLTV is now set up, next add it to the MythTV configuration.

Stop mythtv and run, as the mythtv user, mythtv-setup.

Select Video Sources, remove a non-working schedules direct entry if you previously tried adding it. Add a new source, name it schedulesdirect or as desired – it must match the .xmltv file from above. I disabled the EIT scan options and set channel frequency table to us-bcast.

Exit & save settings. Run mythfilldatabase, it should now successfully update the guide. This took a few minutes, appearing to hang and gave some Unknown xmltv channel identifier errors, but this did not cause any trouble.

After running it the web interface showed guide data and channel/network icons.

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