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Messages - Randall

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Users / Re: What do you call you LinuxMCE system?
« on: April 01, 2011, 04:15:55 pm »
All other machines on my home network are named after extinct birds.

Andrew, just to confirm... do the Dianemo i-device apps work with a standard LMCE install?

Users / Re: Feedback wanted
« on: March 19, 2011, 01:12:45 am »
Does anyone know if knx/eib is sold/standardized in N.America for 120v? Wikipedia lists it as approved under a Canadian standard CSA-ISO/IEC 14543-3 but nobody seems to know anything about it here and I've found no resellers.

whats keeping you from having two separate networks for the time to familiarize and test lmce and the other one for your everyday use. Once you figured lmce out for yourself, you can always make the switch. In the end, you have to find out for yourself, if lmce is for you or not.

That's what I'm doing. As a new migrant to LMCE, I have to say it isn't easy to drop everything in a previously working setup and switch cold-turkey. It would be easier if LMCE were a full, turn-key solution but the reality is that it is a complicated system with a few quirks. For me, my day-job requires that keep my VPN, mail server, web server and number-crunching machine operating. So, my dcerouter sits behind all of this and controls a separate dhcp network for 'home' devices. I've not run into any real trouble with this approach but I'm going to need to splurge on a decent gigabit switch and build a PoE injector in the not too distant future.

Users / Re: PadOrbiter 2.0
« on: March 11, 2011, 08:36:24 pm »

Yes, but since these devices have far more advanced video playback and GPU processing features, we can actually make every portable device not only a control point, but also a media end point.

That's exactly where I see things going.

Also, consider PlutoStorageDevices. Once this is running on PadOrbiter v2, the host device will suddenly be able to share USB storage devices with the rest of the house, transparently.

Again, makes total sense. These little touch-screen devices have way too much horsepower now to be used as glorified remote controls.

At the risk of going OT, the only small issue I see is with Qt/Clutter... MeeGo is less of a concern as the underlying OS probably isn't a big deal. It's not clear to me what path development of these libraries will take going forward now that Nokia is in bed with MS for their phones and Qt (commercial) is being forked to Digia. I know, the 'official' line is that these are test-beds for UI design at Nokia, but I cannot imagine there's going to be much paid development on the open source side. That being said, I'm not sure if there are any real alternatives.

Overall, this looks great. Now if only I could get some of those Joggler/openpeak devices in Canada.

Users / Re: Block telemarketing numbers
« on: February 03, 2011, 02:00:28 am »
In my experience, the best way to block telemarketers, fax calls, etc is to use a whitelist and a simple voice-mail setup. I don't do this within LMCE at the moment but basically every caller with an unknown/private callerid is prompted to 'press 1 to ring our phone' or 'press 2 to leave a message' in extensions.conf.  I populate my whitelist table in msql from my address book so that if the number is known, it goes straight through and rings my extensions.

Users / Re: Nice system for monitoring home energy efficiency
« on: January 15, 2011, 05:46:48 am »
$1K seem like an ok price but I know there's a Arduino project that can at least measure one circuit. I wonder how difficult it would be to extend the number of circuits...

Users / Re: HDHomeRun-Dual vs. WinTV-HVR-2250 vs. HD-5500
« on: January 13, 2011, 08:53:31 pm »
In addition to abysmal IO performance, keep in mind that your LMCE core officially needs two NICs.  From the wiki:

The Core should have 2 NICs (network interface cards) -- one for connecting to an "external" network (such as your cable modem, DSL modem, or home LAN router) and one for connecting to the "internal" home automation/multimedia network (your LinuxMCE system network).

Help Wanted / Re: driver for 1-wire bus
« on: January 02, 2011, 04:36:20 pm »
I'm not at the stage where I'll be contributing templates, but just curious which 1-wire setup you have?  I have a hobby-boards serial setup logging weather to my old debian server (mostly just rddtool scripting with a console and web display) but porting to my LMCE setup is quite a ways down on my todo list.  Assuming it is just a single daisy-chain usb/serial connection, the 1-wire interface is pretty easy to query and log.

Users / Re: Getting Started
« on: December 26, 2010, 04:53:21 am »
You will need to create a device template and do some complex pipe rules for the Russound. This is a very advanced topic, and only a handful of people know how to successfully pull it off correctly (myself included).

i am available for paid consult, if working via forum isn't enough.


Many thanks for the offer Thom. I'm pretty good with low-level C so we'll see how it goes when the time comes. I'm taking 5 months off for paternity leave starting in Feb. so I should have a few hours per day (nap time) to tinker. 

Users / Re: Getting Started
« on: December 23, 2010, 11:38:13 pm »
Thanks for the reply!

Just put the MD with the receiver and stuff into another room/box, and
just put the wires for the TV and loudspeakers thru the wall

That's the plan. My basement is unfinished which gives me good access for wiring everything up.  The only issues I forsee is the lack of a local MD may make it difficult to use an RF remote and/or a bluetooth keyboard.

With LinuxMCE you don't want multi-zone amps, but an amp for each
zone. And each zone is controlled by either an MD or a SqueezeBox. In
theory you can use a multizone-amp, but that means doing a lot of
loudspeaker cabling, whereas with the original LinuxMCE approach you
only need a single CAT cable to each zone.

I appreciate this but I'm not a big fan of the squeeze/logitech hardware (it has always seemed overpriced for what it does).  I was able to get my older roku device to work on my test box but, again, I'm not a huge fan of these. After a little research I think I'm going to try squeezeslave and a Russle Sound CA4 amplifier (completely controllable via rs232).

You get what you pay for. The <100EUR tablets have a very flimsy feel,
but work ok. A used iPod Touch is also nice, if you have good eyes and
delicate fingers.

I like the iPad/iPod touch but I've decided to wait for the next revision. One thing most of these android tablets are missing is a simple, charging stand/cradle.  I'm looking at the color nook at the moment.

Developers / Re: Los93soL Android Touch Orbiter
« on: December 23, 2010, 05:53:35 am »
I'm just wondering if this will work with any android tablet or if there is anything specific I should look out for.  Cheap 7-10" android tablets, the 'aPad', 'ePad', and 'gPad' :o, all seem to be readily available locally but each has slightly different specs.  Is it even worth considering one of these as a cheap android orbiter?

Users / Getting Started
« on: December 22, 2010, 09:17:50 pm »
I've done a fair bit of reading on the wiki but I was hoping someone can offer some additional input on my new home setup.  I've installed 0710 (and more recently 0810) in vmware-esx and poked around a bit and I've finally bought a dedicated box.  For the moment, this is going to sit behind my firewall/vpn and next to my existing home server (debian) as I work to migrate my exim, apache, asterisk, squeze, samba, and various other services.

Are there any good guides on wiring-up a clean, TV + surround system and a 5-zone, multi-room audio using LMCE?  In moving to LMCE, one of my big hopes is to clean-up my living room and simplify the control of the main TV and home audio.  I'd really like to reclaim some space and remove everything, except the TV, from the living room.  I have a dedicated wiring closet and rack in the basement for gear.

Outstanding questions:
- What is the best way to get surround sound 5.1 / 7.1 into the living-room without having a reciever/decoder/amplifier in the same room?
- Can anyone recommend a reasonable multi-zone amplifier, ideally capable of taking independent inputs for each zone (preferably rs232)?
- For orbiters, I'm thinking that a pair of 7" android tablets. Does anyone have any thoughts on these or are they all more-or-less the same?

Users / Apad orbiter?
« on: September 21, 2010, 05:45:57 pm »
Found this video of Apad (android?) being used as an orbiter for LinuxMCE...

does anyone have any additional info on these?  Are they running as a full orbiter, Touch Orbiter or just a web orbiter?

Users / Re: capture cards and "virtual" core
« on: July 20, 2010, 04:03:30 pm »
I've been planning to set up a virtualized core as I have a small place and really only have space for one server.  At the same time, I want a dedicated vpn/ssh/mail/web/general-use server as well as a linuxMCE for home automation. 

PCI pass-through for video cards and capture cards is not supported in ESXi and (I gather) unlikely to ever be supported as it is not a capability needed in enterprise environments. It is the same reason that you won't find driver support for cheaper realtek nic cards.  Best to check your existing HW with the official supported list before you get too far into it.  ESXi 4.1 adds support for USB passthrough which should make it possible to keep zwave dongles and USB-serial converters attached to the core. For video, I think the solution is to go with a network device, HD HomeRun and avoid PCI passthrough entirely.

As for whether this machine is suitable for 'production' I think it will work quite well, but time will tell.  It is certainly very easy to backup and abstract virtual machines away from their hardware (which is very nice) as it means that down-time due to a core failure can be minimized.  ESXi allows me to allocate resources with a fair amount of flexibility and 4-8 core machines with 4-8GB of RAM are not particularly expensive these days (my current server is a quad-core, has 8 GB of RAM and 2 onboard NICs).  Network telephone/SIP, video, and RS232 appliances are all readily available and comparable in price to their PCI counterparts. 

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