Why I left LinuxMCE for MythBuntu
My experience with LinuxMCE was unsuccessful, frustrating, difficult, and
time consuming. I read the forums and wiki pages and searched the google for
information on LinuxMCE for at least a full 3 weeks before I decided to
After reading online, I decided that my server was up to snuff, based
on the information provided here. My server will be a hybrid.
My server, which was bought the first week of Dec 07, has been running
Ubuntu 7.10 perfectly. It has a very good nVidia 8400 video card with 512MB
of RAM. 2 GB memory, 250GB Sata HD and Sata DVD-RW. It works fine
my 8 days of hell trying to run LinuxMCE the most it ever ran without
requiring a hard or soft reset was 1 day, and that was only because I
had stopped using the mouse and keyboard on the server to fiddle, I was
doing things remotely. As soon as I would go to the machine and select
KDE desktop, when I was done the software would blow up fairly quickly
afterwards. My server locked up all the time. Somebody said, maybe your
hardware should be changed out. I don't think so. It ran Ubuntu 7.10
just fine, and it runs MythBuntu 7.10 just fine now too.
After reading this:http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/KnownIssues_0710_Beta4
I unchecked the nVidia option, installed the patch for MythTV and did the
fix for the sort thing.
I had some newbie issues, and I thought I would document my experience
for the benefit of others:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4530.msg26599#msg26599
I also believe that having the USB dongle installed on bootup was a
problem. Installation worked fine with it removed. This is not
documented but is "hinted" about in the forums.
I had issues setting up with one network card, but that shouldn't have been
a problem because it says you can do it
, and it says that right here
Turns out the information provided is incorrect
, and fortunately, this
thread in the forums produced real working results. My thanks to 1audiohttp://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4574.msg26843#msg26843
My next journal entry:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4541.msg26661#msg26661
I thought I had provided good detail, but to this day nobody has offered
up any suggestions to my issues there.
I keep seeing messages about the IVTV software, so I post another
message with links and specific questions:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4545.msg26678#msg26678
No replies. This is confusing too
And my 3rd journal type entry:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4548.msg26688#msg26688
But no responses
from techs or developers.
Next on my list was to try and get LinuxMCE to change the channels on my
external Bell Dish 4700 Receiver. Good luck trying to find any information
on how this is done.
Documentation for this is extremely poor and conflicting.
I specifically bought two PVR-150-MCE with the IR Transceiver bean bag and
dongles. Why? Because I read this page
Now, tell me that the page above doesn't say this:
"IR Transmitter is supported with driver module lirc_mceusb2 version >= 0.24 (lirc-0.8.2)
but in the next line it says
"However, the transmitter is not currently supported in LinuxMCE
but in the next line it says
"Workaround for channel changing in MythTV Only
If that makes sense to you then you are a brilliant mind. But since I took that
to mean it'll work with a little effort, I purchased what I did.
In the forums, the question about using the MCE Transceivers comes up
quite a bit and if you search, you'll see there are very few straight answers
on if they work. Most replies suggest
using USB-UIRT's but nobody seems to
have the balls to come right out and say, "NO!"
Upon reflection, tschak909 says it here though:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4440.msg26153#msg26153
but by then it's too late for me.
So I post a very specific question about my dish and remote:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4569.msg26793#msg26793
and tschak909 convinces me to just give up and purchase a couple USB-UIRTs
and my life will be rosey. A few days later, I decide to order them online
as things are sorta working.
I also bought some X10 Home Automation equipment, based on what I was
reading here:http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/CM11and here
I have a:CM11A
LM465 x 2
which still hasn't arrived, but I'd be happy to sell this to whoever wants the
It cost me $45 U.S. plus shipping. You can have them all for $45 CDN and I'll
pay for shipping to North America destinations.
So next up, I know I need a computer for the master bedroom and living room, to act
as Media Directors.
Once again I scout the web to see what might work.
I look at the hardware specs for mainboards:http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Category:Mainboards
and for video:http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Category:Video
and graphic cards:http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Category:Graphic_Cards
I decide on a barebones box from a dealer not far away, that uses and AMD 4200+
CPU, has 1 GB of RAM, has onboard nVideo video, etc. I need to use SVideo out for
this box, so I buy a nVidia 7200 GS PCIe card to pop in there.
For the bedroom, I wanted something a little smaller and I found a neat HTPC on
eBay that contains the via board. Based on this information:http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/VIA_EPIA_Mini-ITX
I figured this would be fine. Fiire uses similar equipment, and the forums had
some threads on drivers, like:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=2519.msg11991#msg11991
I didn't think this would be a big issue, but on the day it arrived, I fired it
up and Network booting the thing was a pain. It froze the core. Rebooted both. It
wouldn't load X. I posted a message:http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=4624.msg27051#msg27051
totallymaxed and darrenmason had some good advice, but after hours of fiddling
with commands I was about done. I also utilized the live chat feature too.
And then I decided to install the PVR-150-MCE card into the MD for the living room
and when it reboots? it freezes at the same point each and every time. Take the
card out? It boots. When it freezes? it shut down my entire network.
So now I have two media directors with issues, a core that freezes or requires
reboots constantly, and a week of my life has passed me by, a few things are
still being delivered, and NOTHING WORKS PROPERLY
In all fairness, I did discover that the PVR-150 card I got off eBay is one that
contains a chip with bugs. It has the cx23415 chipset that is documented somewhere
(I can't find it) as causing problems. It's on the shelf collecting dust but I
did use the MCE remote and ir transceiver. Actually, there were two bean bag
transceivers in the box. Bonus! I ordered a brand new PVR-150-MCE kit from Tiger
Direct and that'll be here soon.But after all this, I gave up on LinuxMCE. It just wasn't worth the hassles!
I feel sorry for any newcomer who thinks they are going to have an amazing system
as shown in the Demo Video (which I totally detest, as it's very misleading!).If that's YOU reading this post, good luck! You have no idea what you're getting
I have since switched over to MythBuntu 7.10 with latest updates.http://www.mythbuntu.org/
and being an avid fan of Ubuntu, I'm thrilled
to be back into their forums:http://ubuntuforums.org/forumdisplay.php?f=301
where there is plenty of useful information and plenty of friendly people all
happy to give out advice and tips. I contribute as well.
And funny, all three of my computers work just peachy keen with MythBuntu
. No more
reboots and lockups. It just works.
I definitely prefer the way MythTV handles music, photos and videos. The interface
with LinuxMCE for those items is very poor. I never figured out how to tell LinuxMCE
to play my entire music collection in random order. MythTV? A few keystrokes. I
never liked seeing my photos in a small square on LinuxMCE. MythTV? Full screen (on
a 4:3 ration, and definitely larger on 16:9). MythTV is also easier to do a slideshow
or move around folders.
Adding thmbnails and IMDB info to avi files in MythTV is fairly painless. I think I
got LinuxMCE to look up information on one avi file for me in all the time I
fiddled with it.
Oh, and did I mention that my MCE remotes and transceivers work just fine in MythTV?http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?p=4527005#post4527005
Once again the ubuntu forums proved extremely useful, and things "just work" and it
doesn't take days to do what should be simple tasks.
I have two brand new USB-UIRTs coming (yah, they aren't even here yet) that are
One is $50 and the other is $55 cause it has the 56 hertz thing. You can buy them from
me at that price (CDN) and I'll pay for shipping to North American destinations just
to get rid of them.LinuxMCE is far from ready for the masses
. Equipment support is very narrow, and your
online documentation is terrible. There's either no information on how to do certain
tasks or the information there is out of date, incomplete or conflicting. I found it
extremely difficult to get a straight answer or to find the exact steps to solve my
issues. I think you need to regroup, reorganize and redocument.
The "concept" is great.... however I don't think the general public should be
acting as your Alpha or Beta testers when support and feedback is so hard to come