Author Topic: Upgrade from .29 to .30 - Houston, we have a problem ....  (Read 6065 times)

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Upgrade from .29 to .30 - Houston, we have a problem ....
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2005, 12:25:55 pm »
Hi Rob

actually that one was my first choice when I started to work with EPIA hw, but I downloaded many different drivers without success. They distribute binary only for Fedora, Mandriva, Red Hat and Suse and I was not able to find a proper way to compile their source under Debian. Also there is a bit of a mess with X driver and frame buffer driver, and probably I have first to make myself a clear picture of what is really needed.

Moreover there are some issues regarding VIA drivers licence, that seems to be not so "open source".

In addition to this the maximum performances with acceleration can only be obtained by using a forked version of xine (VeXP), that is out of Pluto perspective.

As soon as I get a stable situation with my current choice (and I think I'm pretty close to it) I may give again a look on their drivers, because they already implemented MPEG-4 hw acceleration that unichrome project still does not have.

Of course any suggestion is warmly welcome.

Regards
Marco

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Upgrade from .29 to .30 - Houston, we have a problem ....
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2005, 01:19:58 pm »
Thought I would post some good news.

Following the problems I had with mythtv and intermittent playing of media where CD/DVD's would sometimes start and sometimes not  :?  I have rebuilt the system again from scratch and also replaced the video card with a newer Radeon model and everything is now stable.  

I can only assume that my video card was causing the majority of problems, although everything was working prior to the .30 upgrade.

I was also the person who reported a problem with asterisk and bttv unloading due to the alsa-noninteractive script.  This is not a real issue as it is was easy to resolve and came about as I have an intel8x0 onboard sound card.

Anyway it is great to have a pluto system back up and running following problems with yttron being offline which just happened to co-incide with an attempted rebuild at the weekend.

NOS

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Upgrade from .29 to .30 - Houston, we have a problem ....
« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2005, 10:02:39 pm »
Quote from: "MarcoZan"
Hi Rob

....

Of course any suggestion is warmly welcome.

Regards
Marco


Hi,

I'm not sure if this will be of any help, but I found these interesting links :

newbielink:http://www.epiawiki.org/wiki/tiki-index.php?page=EpiaXfree [nonactive]

with link to Ivor's version (it seems newer):

newbielink:http://myth.ivor.org/unichrome/ [nonactive]

Explanation on some forum:


Quote
The issue is that the project is fragmented now, where the sourceforge project appears to be pretty much abandoned, but some developers continued with another branch (the main guy being "Ivor"), which supports the newer chipsets, like the CN400.



I bet that Ivor Hewitt (author of unichrome active fork) will help you on that matter. Good luck, we keep our fingers crossed...

Regards,

Rob.
[/url]

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« Reply #18 on: October 12, 2005, 09:14:53 am »
Hi Rob and thanks for your support

Initially I also gave a look on Ivor snapshot but it was not compiling with the X tree I had at that time. This does not mean that the solution is not good, because in the very beginning I had several problems in compiling anything on this box ... Now it may be worth a new try ...

In general all of the different alternatives I've found are  related to Xorg or to "cutting edge" Xfree86 releases, that is a bit far from keeping the things close to Pluto path.

One of the approach I had (maybe a bit extreme ...) was to build my box from scratch with debian kernel 2.6.12 EPIA patched and DRI enabled, replace Xfree86 with Xorg EPIA patched and compile X driver. Then my idea was to install Pluto on top of it, with all sources in order to be able to rebuild all needed modules. Unfortunately it came out in the end that Pluto installation wizard does not support anymore custom installations like this .... so pity because the box was working like a charm with Xine ...

So I had to revert to a more standard approach, and this is why I'm making now some more conservative choices (of course besides to a bit of lack of overall knowledge of linux and Pluto..).

Basically I don't know what kind of impact may have against the Pluto system the choice to replace Xfree86 with Xorg, or simply upgrade Xfree86 to a 4.5.x release (4.5.x has native VIA EPIA support, currently Pluto uses a 4.3.x that has to be patched). Any suggestion/comment on this topic is greatly appreciated, I wouldn't mind to save some time on potentially unuseful tests :)

What I can surely say is that all these performance problems would instantly disappear the minute Pluto guys feel it's ok to drop xine and use vlc instead.
I made a simple test, i.e on a standard Pluto install (no xfree hack nor xine upgrade) I killed all Pluto stuff and tested manually vlc and xine playing the same divx file (one after the other, not at the same time).

Well... vlc has WAY better performances even with standard xfree drivers, it never looses a frame and overall playback is fluent and audio/video are always in sync.
To get the same behaviour with xine I have to use a patched xfree86 server/driver and xine 1.1.0, but nevertheless it uses more CPU.
I know that vlc has some stability issues, so all we have to do is to wait and find a good compromise with xine in the mean time.

As an update on what I'm testing now, I managed to recompile/install xine 1.1.0 over 1.0.2 release, and things are "almost" working.
"Almost" means that xine does not loose frames nor get out ov a/v sync anymore but sometimes it refuses to play some files, and I have to wait some time and retry.
I didn't figure out yet what it is, I'll have to go deep with the logs.

Regards
Marco

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« Reply #19 on: October 13, 2005, 09:50:35 am »
We do have a VLC player, you can remove xine and add vlc.
However it's not fully implemented becaues we had some problems and bugs with VLC, and sent the VLC team requests for help and posted messages in the forum.  But VLC seemed quite dead--not one person would ever respond to any of the issues and we couldn't find anybody there would discuss how to fix the VLC bugs. So we're not opposed to vlc,  but we cannot become vlc developers--the vlc team needs to have an interest in it

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Upgrade from .29 to .30 - Houston, we have a problem ....
« Reply #20 on: October 20, 2005, 09:25:38 am »
Hi Dan

I know that you are not opposed to VLC, I didn't realize thoug that VLC project was dead.
Sometimes I give a look on their devel site and forum, and there seems to be some activity, and they recently released a beta release of VLC 0.8.4 (around 3 weeks ago).

I totally agree that you are not supposed to become VLC developers, probably at the time you tried to get in touch with them they were focused on other issues (maybe the recent new beta release).

I don't know which are the VLC bugs that you would like to be fixed, but maybe something has been made with latest beta.

Meanwhile I continue with xine, as things are more or less working.

There is only a minor issue, i.e with xine 1.1.0 the wrapper seems to have some problems when closing, so I have to wait for the process to die in order to see a new stream.
This was not happening with .29, so I guess that xine wrapper has been changed.
If I'm still in time for wishes to include in .31, it would be great to have a xine wrapper that can be used with xine 1.0.2 or 1.1.0.

If anyone is interested, I'll post all the steps I performed to have a VIA box hybrid working fine with video playback (with the small issue described above), so maybe also someone else can test and maybe make everything to work also on MD.

Regards
Marco

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« Reply #21 on: October 20, 2005, 10:43:40 am »
Here's my posts, maybe if you have some insights we can get this to work.  VLC does have a loyal following, so I assume there's a way, but I could never get very far...

newbielink:http://forum.videolan.org/viewtopic.php?t=10525&highlight= [nonactive]

I did get a reply to this one, but using dvdsimple isn't really a solution--just a hack--it just bypasses the dvdmenu and forces you to watch the first title.  You really need a way to display the menu:
newbielink:http://forum.videolan.org/viewtopic.php?t=10039&highlight= [nonactive]

newbielink:http://forum.videolan.org/viewtopic.php?t=10041&highlight= [nonactive]
newbielink:http://forum.videolan.org/viewtopic.php?t=9872&highlight= [nonactive]
newbielink:http://forum.videolan.org/viewtopic.php?t=9833&highlight= [nonactive]

As you can see from the posts we had very poor success with VLC.  We couldn't get even the most basic stuff to work.  For example, with a dvd, we couldn't get the menu to appear.  The only proposed solution was bypassing the menus--that means no dvd options.  And in dvd's where teh first title is a commentary or 'making of', etc., you can never watch the movie.

The purpose of vlc is distributed audio/video to multiple locations.  But we could never get the syncing to work at all.  I used the exact samples provided in their docs, but it never worked at all.

Regarding Xine, the .30 release was a real mess because it included an upgrade of our debian sarge mirror.  Lots and lots of packages, like xine, asterisk, etc. behaved differently.  That's why we try to upgrade our mirror as rarely as possible.  But, after 2 weeks or so of writing work-arounds, i think we're about ready to release .31 and we fixed most of the issues.  I hope.  :)

we're including a new xine in .31 because xine is now the front end for high-def distributed satellite/digital tv using vdr as a back-end.  I would need to see that issue with the stream closing to understand it.  You can try me on live chat and if you give me remote assistance i'll try to monitor the logs and see what's going on.  Obviously we want it to be perfect.

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« Reply #22 on: October 20, 2005, 01:30:26 pm »
Hi Aaron
Quote from: "aaron.b"

As you can see from the posts we had very poor success with VLC.

I'm sorry about the unlucky response from VLC team. It is really pity, because their piece of sw is really interesting and in my opinion it would perfectly fit in a home automation system.
I know that DVD support is still under development (as they claim on their website) but as you said this is not enough to put it into a production environment.

Quote from: "aaron.b"

we're including a new xine in .31 because xine is now the front end for high-def distributed satellite/digital tv using vdr as a back-end.

This sounds very interesting to me. Are you planning to use xine 1.1.0? If so, this would limit the required "hack" to make Pluto work on VIA box.

From what you said I'm pretty convinced that the small issue I'm facing with xine is related to the major upgrade you made.
I think that the best choice here is to wait for .31, and as soon I get it I will see whether this will clear such issue or not.

Regards
Marco

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Successfully playing DVD's with menus from VLC
« Reply #23 on: October 20, 2005, 02:07:39 pm »
Hi Aaron,

I think the issue is more to do with controlling VLC from the command line than any lack of basic functionality.

For example using VLC 0.8.1 (the version included in the 2.0.0.30 release of Pluto) from the 'Computing' menu we can play a DVD with onscreen menus working perfectly. Indeed we can play that DVD locally on the MD with the DVD drive and simultaneously stream it to all other MD's on the network in perfect synch. This also works with ISO's ripped and stored on the core.

Give it a try...it really does work! ;-)

Doing battle with the VLC command line is where the problem is I am sure.


Quote from: "aaron.b"
We couldn't get even the most basic stuff to work.  For example, with a dvd, we couldn't get the menu to appear.  The only proposed solution was bypassing the menus--that means no dvd options.  And in dvd's where teh first title is a commentary or 'making of', etc., you can never watch the movie.

The purpose of vlc is distributed audio/video to multiple locations.  But we could never get the syncing to work at all.  I used the exact samples provided in their docs, but it never worked at all.

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« Reply #24 on: October 20, 2005, 06:17:58 pm »
i think the vlc has a control over tcp or udp. did have a go at making a home tv station using it as a streaming server a few years ago. i'll dig up my notes and have a look at what i did