Rich0's Gentoo Blog

What’s Up With MythTV on Gentoo?

with 16 comments

I’ve gotten a few fair questions over the last few weeks about the status of MythTV on Gentoo. Here is a quick synopsis of where things stand…

Right now Gentoo is considerably behind upstream for MythTV. Gentoo’s latest stable is in the 0.22 branch, with 0.23 being in testing. Upstream considers 0.24.1 stable.

The good news is that upstream actually provides a Gentoo overlay which should make getting this into the tree relatively easy. The bad news is that MythTV and its plugins are heavily dependent on an eclass, and the upstream overlay eclass contains substantial changes (and is likely not backwards compatible with the ebuilds in the Gentoo tree).

Complicating things is the fact that the MythTV herd is pretty thin these days on Gentoo, with Cardoe being tied up with other things (as an aside – we all owe Cardoe thanks for sustaining things for this long). My own MythTV setup is also used by my family of four, which means that I don’t like to mess with it unless I have a solid weekend to deal with any issues that crop up, especially since my front-end runs minimyth which is itself problematic and needs to be kept in-sync since MythTV does not support cross-version client/server setups. A series of personal emergencies hasn’t really helped much either.

Still, our users do deserve better, and I’m eager to try out 0.24 myself. So, rather than slow things up by trying to consolidate the eclasses into something that is both forwards- and backwards-compatible I plan to just introduce a mythtv-2.eclass into the tree, and migrate over. Once the old builds are cleaned out the old eclass will no longer be used (removing it is a different matter for the longer-term).

Hopefully I’ll get a chance to upgrade to the version in upstream’s overlay soon, and once I’m reasonably confident that it is OK I’ll introduce it into the tree. It will likely be light on plugins initially unless I can find some willing testers – if you’re interested in helping out feel free to contact me offline or comment below.

So, sorry for the long wait. If you are in a hurry feel free to try out upstream’s overlay – unless it contains some major issue that is what Gentoo will end up with and it will be easy for you to switch over. Oh, and expect 0.24.1 to be the target for Gentoo – no sense starting out behind.

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Written by rich0

June 18, 2011 at 10:59 pm

Posted in gentoo

16 Responses

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  1. We should try to get more media devs.

    Anton

    June 18, 2011 at 11:39 pm

  2. I was thinking the same thing. I’m willing to help test on my two gentoo machines running it (a frontend and a backend).

    Scott

    June 18, 2011 at 11:41 pm

  3. Very nice to see someone “taking up the cross” here so to speak. Thanks for all your hard work! Just as an aside, I’ve been running 0.24 from their overlay for a little while now without too many show-stopping issues (other than the general instability I’ve always experienced from MythTV), but like you have refrained from updates since that box is used by my wife as well. As they say in the MythTV lists, the “WAF” is still shaky, but she’s come to enjoy too many of the features that most of the closed systems don’t even offer. 🙂

    Tianon

    June 19, 2011 at 4:16 am

  4. Thank you for your hard work. You’ve probably seen my comments in bug #345271. After speaking to upstream, I’ve had better luck with the ALSA driver when using PulseAudio underneath. This works a lot better than it used to.

    James Le Cuirot

    June 19, 2011 at 5:09 am

  5. I tried minimyth for a bit but I gave up on it. So instead I built a gentoo nfs-as-root-filesystem frontend instead and have not looked back. It’s not a hassle to keep it as the same version as the server and it’s gentoo so it’s easy to maintain.

    Matt

    June 21, 2011 at 9:43 am

    • I might look into that. The device has no local storage, and no working console except through X11. Oh, and it is massively underpowered (M10000) so hardware acceleration is desirable. I also only have 512MB of RAM on the thing.

      Part of me is thinking long-term about getting an Apple TV and installing XBMC on it, based on a recent presentation I attended on XBMC which can serve as a MythTV front-end.

      rich0

      June 21, 2011 at 1:46 pm

      • You probably want a lot more RAM than that for an nfs diskless frontend. I run 4GB on mine so that when it’s running emerge, I can do all my compilation in system memory since disk access (nfs) to the server is slow.

        Matt

        June 21, 2011 at 5:17 pm

  6. Thank you for your hard work on MythTV. I would love to have a more recent version, for example to be compatible with frontends from other distributions (Ubuntu on an EeePC). At least I can offer to test on my system, AMD64, DVB-C.

    Willem Marsman

    June 21, 2011 at 5:41 pm

  7. Ugh – well, I did get 0.24.1 working on Gentoo, but my front-end did not work. Seems like support for the older EPIA motherboards is being dropped, so I can’t run the newer versions of Myth without a hardware upgrade. I’m open to suggestions on that, but it will delay my being able to effectively test the new version.

    However, I did run 0.24.1 long enough to confirm that it works. I’m going to go ahead and get the new eclass posted for review on -dev and start the ball rolling with getting packages into the tree. I’ll have them masked initially, but at least portage will contain the new version, and we can look to get that into ~arch reasonably soon.

    Worst case I can always just backup my production system on a weekend, upgrade, test, and downgrade to do the Gentoo work until my front-end situation is sorted out.

    If anybody has suggestions on front-end hardware I’m all ears. Main requirements are composite/S-video output, and SPDIF audio. Being capable of HD would be nice of course, but is not strictly required. Cheap/quiet is a strong consideration as well.

    rich0

    June 25, 2011 at 4:06 pm

  8. I have been running MythTV on Gentoo for two years now on unstable. I stopped using the portage versions early on because they are so out of date. I build fixes/0.24 from git and have been quite happy with the results, generally.

    I would enjoy having MythTV and dependencies rebuild automatically via portage though and have installed the overlay to try it. Unfortunately, one of my systems is currently a little old as my main workstation was recently hit by lightning and I have switched to a backup. This system requires nvidia-drivers-173, so emerging MythTV via portage fails because the ebuild must think that nvidia-drivers-275 is a prerequisite. That is a surprise to me since I run MythTV every day on this system using nvidia-drivers-173.

    I would be happy to switch to the portage overlay and help however I might once we get past this issue. I will keep trying to build via portage once a week or so and make the switch when it will emerge on my system without error.

    Thanks,
    Dave Day

    Dave Day

    June 30, 2011 at 9:55 am

    • I’ll look into the nvidia thing. I know that MythTV is switching to newer Nvidia APIs, so that could be part of the issue with the newer versions. That is the driver behind having to upgrade my front-end…

      rich0

      June 30, 2011 at 10:10 am

  9. I’d be happy to help test. I have a x86 mythtv backend server and a variety of x86 and amd64 frontends. My TV also accesses the backend over DNLA. I use the mythweb plugin, which I would be happy to test new versions of as well.

    Myk Taylor

    July 8, 2011 at 3:52 am

  10. I would enjoy having MythTV and dependencies rebuild automatically via portage though and have installed the overlay to try it. Unfortunately, one of my systems is currently a little old as my main workstation was recently hit by lightning and I have switched to a backup. This system requires nvidia-drivers-173, so emerging MythTV via portage fails because the ebuild must think that nvidia-drivers-275 is a prerequisite. That is a surprise to me since I run MythTV every day on this system using nvidia-drivers-173.

    Dan

    July 25, 2011 at 9:19 pm

  11. Is there an overlay for 0.24.x ebuilds? Or even a live ebuild

    Alexander

    October 9, 2011 at 6:41 am

  12. I just updated 1 backend and 2 frontends to 0.25 from the upstream ebuilds. The only trouble I had was that 6200ch wasn’t included like it is in the portage ebuild. That caused live tv to fail.

    Other than that I redid the audio settings on the frontends as suggested and now get 5.1 surround sound! I’m stoked.

    Scott

    October 22, 2011 at 8:37 pm


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