Will try and answer some questions for you - I am sure others will also add more or correct me if I am wrong. Pluto staff also read these forums and will probably add something.
Just wanted to say hi and ask some questions. I've been playing with HA stuff for a while and I've decided to try pluto and mythTV. I'm currently running my own developed software for HA and freevo as my pvr. I downloaded the kickstart cd, but I want to ask some questions before I continue:
(a) Do I need internet access to install pluto from the kickstart cd?
There was talk of changes being made so that it was not necessary to have internet access for install but I am not sure where that ended up. I think at this stage it would be safer to have it.
Pluto likes the core to be the gateway machine with two network cards. I tried it differently and it sort of worked but when I let it be the gateway everything seemed to work much nicer.
(b) I'm planning on having a master server which will be in the closet and another pc in the livingroom for the mythtv frontend and another pc in the kitchen for controlling my ha stuff.
The master server will be the pluto "core" and will be a constant running high end machine that other machines depend upon. Good spot to put your TV Cards, Asterisk cards etc. All other PCs will be Media Directors and will do a network boot (from Core) to get their OS and the Pluto stuff they need to run. They will by default run Orbiter software which is the Pluto frontend. This configurable frontend will basically control everything and puts a wrapper around other software that is used for Media playing etc.
(b1) Does pluto automatically install the mythtv backend on my pluto server via the kick start cd?
Yes, but there is usually still some setup to do
(b2) Is there a frontend that I can use in the kitchen, except mythtv.
Whereever you have Orbiter software running you will be able to control everything (including MythTV). The Orbiter software can also run on PDAs and selected mobile phones. You will only see the MythTV frontend if that is the configured TV application and you press the TV button on an Orbiter which is looking at a room with MythTV.(b3) If I install mythtv in the livingroom will it be connected to pluto and show the status from pluto?
Not sure exactly what you are asking here, but the living room PC will effectively be the same as the kitchen one in terms of interface. When you tell it what room you are looking at it will alter the options available appropriately.
(c) I've got an analogue tv card, will does work in the master server for tv recordings?
As long as you can get it to run under Linux (debian) then it should be OK for Pluto (and MythTV)
(d) I've built some of my own devices for my HA, is it possible to develop my own plugins for pluto to access these devices ?
Absolutely, and may not even involve much coding - especially if they have serial interfaces. There are also wizards to assist if the code has to be written.
(e) Any other info/tips/wisdom you can share with me?
Try it out. Keep in mind that it is still in the development stages and some bits are still being worked on - but for the most part it works well and provides a good platform going forward.
Read through the documentation on this site and go through the forums. There is a fair bit of information there.
We will be interested in how you get on.