Rich0's Gentoo Blog

Another MythTV Update

with 11 comments

Agreeing with some advice on gentoo-dev, I’m going to post this as a blog entry instead of a Gentoo news item. The quick version of this update is expect to see 0.24.1 in portage in a few days. The long version follows…

As many have noticed, the Gentoo version of MythTV has been significantly lagging the upstream version. We plan to introduce 0.24.1, which is the current upstream stable version, in the next few days. Before going through the upgrade we wanted to make you aware of our future plans for MythTV in Gentoo and some of your alternatives.

The Gentoo MythTV package will generally try to stay closer to upstream than it has in the last year, but probably will only be updated a few times per year at most. It will benefit from the full Gentoo QA process, including introduction to ~arch followed by stabilization. Dependencies will also be controlled in line with Gentoo QA so things should suddenly not stop working without warning. Versions that are stabilized will stay in the tree longer after they are superseded for those who want to take their time with upgrades.

The versions of MythTV in Gentoo may also not support the full range of upstream plugins.

There is an alternative for those of you who want a more bleeding-edge experience. Upstream maintains a Gentoo overlay at: git://

The upstream repository will be the first to receive updates and will have many more intermediate versions including bugfixes. The overlay also supports all the upstream plugins. However, it is not subject to Gentoo QA policy – dependencies could stop working or disappear without warning, and older versions may not be kept around. Generally speaking, we have not heard complaints from those who use it. Any issues with the upstream overlay should be reported to the MythTV project and not to Gentoo bugzilla.

If you’re already using the upstream overlay you shouldn’t be impacted by anything done in Portage – your versions will generally stay higher than our own.

If we drop your favorite plugin and you want it back and are willing to help maintain it, send us a note at If you’re willing to test it and ensure it works for everybody else, we can keep it in the portage tree.

Written by rich0

December 14, 2011 at 10:06 am

Posted in foss, gentoo, linux, mythtv

11 Responses

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  1. Thanks for getting the ebuild up to date! I’ve been using the upstream overlay for a while now, and I dread fixing the inevitable problems with their ebuilds.


    December 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    • Their ebuilds actually are pretty decent – the one I just posted in bugzilla and will upload was based on one of their’s from a few months ago that I’ve been running without issue.

      I think that problems are more likely to arise from possible dependency issues if their ebuild depends on something that changes in portage. The Gentoo QA process should prevent that from happening if you’re using a Gentoo ebuild since we check for things like that, but obviously we can’t check the overlays.

      The other main difference you’ll see between upstream and portage is that portage will update much less often. Unfortunately my only mythtv box is the family TV and the WAF is pretty important. So, even ~arch will be a pretty “stable” experience. But, I do intend to keep it a lot fresher than it has been, and will try to have the next stable release out no long after upstream deems it ready.


      December 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm

  2. Thank you! I stumbled here while spending a sunday trying to get myth to work properly on 0.24 again, after breaking it with the upstream ebuilds migrating from a stable 0.23 to 0.24 to support a tablet frontend I have been tinkering with. I think Ive just got in such a mess with layman ebuilds from dr scare’s repository, official upstream ebuilds added in by hand, and other bits and bobs, I was so grateful to do a emerge –sync and see 0.24 in the official tree. Ive stripped all the layman stuff out of etc make and emerge is running as we speak on the main backend, and the first of five atom frontends (protocol bumping is a long and painful process…)
    I too have to get it to work under pressure of WAF, so Im happy to not be on the bleeding edge on this aspect.

    Phil Fluffy

    December 18, 2011 at 9:06 am

    • Don’t thank me too quickly – I’ll be very interested to hear how your upgrade goes. I’ve been using this ebuild reliably, but mainly for a backend. For a frontend I have a minimyth box (maybe one of these days I’ll get a Gentoo PXE boot working).

      Oh, if you have a bunch of otherwise-identical atom front-ends consider creating a binary package. You can copy that from box to box and then do an emerge -k to very quickly install it. That only works if all your libraries/etc are the same – good if the boxes are clones. That actually applies across the board – if you NFS-share a packages dir you could build once and deploy everywhere. That’s the typical gentoo-in-datacenter workflow.

      Good luck with it!


      December 18, 2011 at 9:16 am

      • When I built the first atom frontend, I used DD to clone the filesystem off it as a reference and as we bought more over time (up to four now) they had the working dd image put on them, so hopefully they are all still identical having gone through the same emerge -Dup and had the same make.conf etc applied. Hardware choice courtesy of lidl’s targa nettops and their reduced clearance aisle rather than any blistering performance advantage (they can’t cope with full hd playback as they only have a gig of ram and poorly supported under linux sis671 onboard graphics), although they are completely silent fanless devices and peak at 15w consumption under full load, for the sub 100e apiece they cost, they do the job and I use one for my work pc, and another does double duty as frontend + the heating controller for the house.
        I currently have a portage local mirror setup on the backend exported via nfs so they all –sync from the master server to cut down the load on gentoo’s rsync server, but I could easily nfs share the binaries with some symlink’s and deploy like you suggest as they are (I hope) still identical clones. So far the ebuilds seem good (have ivtv config dialog fixes in too) and they have gone into severe beta testing tonight (wife + sunday night tv) and so far so good. Ill flag anything that comes out as best I can with debug on etc if needs be.

        So thanks again for putting the effort into them.

        Phil Fluffy

        December 18, 2011 at 6:35 pm

      • -For a frontend I have a minimyth box (maybe one of these days I’ll get a Gentoo PXE boot working).

        I tried a minimyth frontend a couple years ago but I kept getting frustrated by the lack of ability to configure it and for it to support things like plug and play and bluetooth. I just gave up on minimyth ultimately and built a Gentoo PXE boot nfs root frontend that has its filesystem on my server/myth backend. I must say it is far superior to minimyth and certainly much easier to fix issues, configure and update since it’s still gentoo after all! If you have any questions about it, I don’t mind answering them.


        December 20, 2011 at 12:22 pm

        • Hmm, that isn’t a bad idea for the long haul. I just started messing with an nfs root – it wasn’t as bad to get set up as I thought it would be. There are a lot of little things to get right, but I suspect that over the next few days I’ll have something working.

          Downside is having to do all the integration work, but as you say the upside is that it is gentoo – long-term maintenance should be a snap.

          Fortunately it is an atom which makes building everything in a chroot from my server a lot easier. If I actually had to cross-compile that would definitely take things up a notch (I REALLY would prefer to avoid having to actually do the builds on the frontend).


          December 21, 2011 at 8:08 pm

  3. What’s the status? I am seeing MythTV 0.24.1 keyword-masked in Portage and also MythWeb, but no plugins at all. For example, no mythweather, mythvideo or mythgallery. Thanks!


    December 29, 2011 at 7:40 am

    • The status is basically as you describe. I do plan to look into mythvideo and possibly mytharchive sometime, but in general plugins will only be supported if somebody commits to proxy maintain them (submit ebuilds, test, etc).

      After 30 days in tree I will be stabilizing what is already there.


      December 29, 2011 at 7:45 am

      • Thanks for your quick response and maintaining MythTV itself. I am not saying that I am able to maintain the plugins, but MythTV without the plugins is not complete and should probably not being stabilized.


        December 29, 2011 at 8:17 am

        • I hear you – but whether we stabilize the new version or not the old one will have to go at some point as it has some issues.

          If anybody needs the plugins there is the upstream overlay which should generally work.


          December 29, 2011 at 10:16 am

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