Author Topic: Linux noob, seeking advice on hardware, installation  (Read 1897 times)

dimofs_z

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Linux noob, seeking advice on hardware, installation
« on: April 14, 2007, 08:45:21 pm »
Thanks to those who actually take the time to read this, I hope that someone helped you out when you were as new to this as I am.

I'm a programming student, with some limited exposure to Linux, mostly Suse and (lately) Ubuntu. Generally my exposure was because all my projects had to work in both Linux and Windows. So, I can use it, I can program a bit of C++ in it, but Linux is still pretty much the wilderness to me.

So, the other day, Digg sent me to look at that video on google of Linux MCE in action newbielink:http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4422887272477313460 [nonactive] , and I've decided I want that. I have an old desktop lying around that I don't use much, and some hardware, and I'd like to see it setup as a Media Center.

What I need is some advice as to what hardware I'll need to buy, what I'll need to replace.

What I have:
-Athlon 64 3000+
-1GB PC3200 Ram
-Radeon X1600 w/tv out
-Radeon 9800 All in Wonder (replaced it with the 1600)
-The remote control that came with the 9800
-A ~7 year old TV, 27 inch or so
-DVD drive

I've looked around and not found a lot of linux support for either ATI video cards. Should I replace these, or perhaps just buy a TV tuner PCI card? If so, what's one with decent linux drivers/support?
Is a Bluetooth card/reciever a good idea? I saw how handy it was in that video, and was impressed. If so, again, what's a good one for use in linux?

This is my summer project, to get a media center setup, and possibly get Jinzora on it later for streaming media.

Thanks again to anyone who can give some advice.
Linux MCE Summer project status: 0/10 (nowhere yet)

sharlee_angelo

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Re: Linux noob, seeking advice on hardware, installation
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2007, 10:31:42 pm »
well, usually, the best video cards in linux are nvidia ones. it should work with ati too (there is official support for linux). a PCI tv tuner is also a very good idea (Hauppauge PVR250 i recommend). any bluetooth receiver should work also. the system that you showed is well suited for linuxmce.
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dimofs_z

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Re: Linux noob, seeking advice on hardware, installation
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2007, 12:32:17 am »
Thanks for the advice on which TVTuner to look for. Just out of curiosity, does anyone know where to find working (or roughly working) Drivers for the TV tuner part of the Radeon 9800 All in Wonder? I've done some research on it, and havn't found much.
Linux MCE Summer project status: 0/10 (nowhere yet)

danielmayer

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Re: Linux noob, seeking advice on hardware, installation
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2007, 10:56:08 am »
edit:
http://linuxtv.org/v4lwiki/index.php/ATI/AMD
Support for TV reception is implemented in three ways:

    * a Radeon TV-input driver
          o merged into X.org 7.0, now released
          o supports Rage Theatre and Rage Theatre 200 cards
/edit

Hi!
hmmm. I had the same card, but never tried to use it under Linux ;)
Some hints can be taken from http://www.reades.com/radeon.html, some hints at  de.linwiki.org/index.php/ATI/AIW. The Gatos-Project had some tips, as it gives as news:
"News":
_----------
Radeon TV-input code has been merged into X.Org CVS, to appear in release 7.0.

    * Bogdan Diaconescu has written code to support Rage Theatre 200 chips and it has been merged into X.org CVS, it will appear in release 7.0.
    * ati.2 Radeon TV-input code has been merged into X.org CVS, it will appear in release 7.0.
    * Bogdan Diaconescu has ported rage128 and radeon parts of ati.2 code to XFree86 4.4.0 - the new code is in module ati.4.4.0 in GATOS CVS.
    * Some of GATOS code that provides Xvideo support for mach64 adaptors has been merged into XFree86 CVS after much, much rework by Egbert Eich and Marc La France.
    * Lourens Veen has written a nice haiku describing the status of TV-out support.
    * The haiku above no longer applies thanks to the work of Federico Ulivi on TV-output support for Radeons. See tv_output branch above.
    * The driver development is in the process of moving to X.org CVS.
_----------

There's much to explore ;)

« Last Edit: April 16, 2007, 01:09:48 pm by danielmayer »
Server: Ubuntu 10.04A2, 1xL5520 on Asus Z8-PED12X, 12GB, 300GB U320Raid0, 8TB HDDs@Adaptec 2820SA + 8TB@Perc 5/E. LMCE via KVM (running); other VMs;
Workstation: W7x64, 2xOpteron 2376, 24GB, 146 GB-SSD-Raid0, ATI 4850
MD: Asrock nv630i, 2GB

dimofs_z

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Re: Linux noob, seeking advice on hardware, installation
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2007, 04:56:03 am »
Alrighty, so, I got those drivers you mentioned for the AIW, and the installation went pretty well for everything.

Where I am now:

-Ubuntu 6.10 installed
-LinuxMCE installed
-The system displays on my normal desktop, but does not seem to output to the TV with the video out on my 9800 AIW.
-When MCE starts up, my monitor displays a black screen with a mouse. Nothing else.

Any advice on how to A: get it to display things on the TV, and/or B: get some TV playing on any screen?

Thanks as always

edit: Oh look, if I just unplug the monitor it works. Except that then my TV monitor goes stupid, and clearly is having some issues. I can do ctrl-alt-f1 to get to a command line at least... getting my Hardware dude roommate to see if he can figure it out.

edit: Okay, so it appears that things look okay on the TV up until the visual login screen. Then things go ugly. If I go to the command prompt, I can see things normally as well. Advice?
« Last Edit: April 18, 2007, 05:07:01 am by dimofs_z »
Linux MCE Summer project status: 0/10 (nowhere yet)

danielmayer

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Re: Linux noob, seeking advice on hardware, installation
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2007, 12:46:35 pm »
Hi,

as far as I understood, you don't need any modified driver anymore. Just install the correct ATI-driver and use XOrg 7.x.
Because I have no TV-card anymore, I can't test it myself or even look after the correct params.

Sorry for no more help...
Server: Ubuntu 10.04A2, 1xL5520 on Asus Z8-PED12X, 12GB, 300GB U320Raid0, 8TB HDDs@Adaptec 2820SA + 8TB@Perc 5/E. LMCE via KVM (running); other VMs;
Workstation: W7x64, 2xOpteron 2376, 24GB, 146 GB-SSD-Raid0, ATI 4850
MD: Asrock nv630i, 2GB