Author Topic: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build  (Read 5272 times)

thezfunk

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thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« on: August 17, 2009, 03:49:16 pm »
Hi guys,

I am going to start a thread here highlighting my attempts at LinuxMCE.  I am a beginner when it comes to Linux.  I wouldn't consider myself a noob because I have used a couple different flavors of Linux before but I don't always understand the slang thrown around and shorthand commands.

Hardware


Core:
DFI Lanparty P35 LT MB
Intel QX6700
TeamGroup 2GB Ram
150GB Raptor
Nvidia 8400GS
PC Power & Cooling 500w PS

MD: (yet to be purchased)
Zotac Nvidia Ion

Those are plans thus far in terms of hardware.  As soon as Newegg has a hard drive sale I plan on ordering 3TB of hard drives to put in RAID5.  Either 4 1TB drives or 3 1.5TB drives.  I can add those at a later date.

The core is together and I tried to install 0710 on it but ran into some issues that I suspect might be my fault.  Until I eliminate user error I won't declare failure there.  I want to get the new 8 alpha/beta working but I figured I would start with the simplest install and work my way up to the more complicated.

I also want this Core to double as a general network storage server and web server for the outside world.  I plan on keeping my pfsense box running my internal network and having LinuxMCE managing it's own internal internal network with the firewall turned off.

Any opinions or comments are welcome.  I will post progress/questions/frustrations.  I hope to get a LinuxMCE solution operational and maybe help some others on the way.

tschak909

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2009, 03:55:00 pm »
Hello, and welcome.

With your hardware build, you will need to use the 0810 alpha build. We can't support 0710 any more for various reasons.

You can download it by clicking on the 0810-alpha2 link on the wiki.

I wish you the best of luck. The best advice I can give you is:

1. Read the FAQ
2. Please let LMCE manage your entire network. You will get most out of the system this way, and you'll have the least amount of headaches.

-Thom

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2009, 02:52:33 pm »
Thanks for the welcome Thom.  I appreciate it.  Linux forums are notoriously unfriendly to new comers.  I have had bad experiences in the past and I am glad my first impression here is a good one.

I read the FAQ.  Very helpful information.

I went through the 0810 alpha install instructions and got quite frustrated and not until I finished did I realize I was making it way too hard.  Long story short...the instructions work and I think I have it running on my Core.  On the first reboot after updating Kubuntu it dumped me at a command prompt.  I was trying to get back into KDE.  I didn't know the command to do so but a quick Google search taught me that the command, 'startx' was all I needed.

Going through the wizard, my audio works but I don't see any video.  I still want to try a couple of things before I declare a problem.  I think it is a driver or setting issue.

I see Newegg has the Hauppauge 2250 on sale with free shipping this week.  I just need a dual QAM tuner (over the air digital).  I have seen multiple posts that the analogue tuner on the card isn't supported in Linux at all yet.  Am I correct in assuming that the digital tuners will work, 'just fine'?

I figure if I make an order from Newegg I should get my Zotac Ion board for my MD.  Do other people have this board working as a MD and are there any problems or modifications that I should be aware of? 
« Last Edit: August 18, 2009, 05:30:42 pm by thezfunk »


merkur2k

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2009, 04:21:14 pm »
if all you need is a digital tuner (OTA is actually 8VSB, not QAM ;) ) then look into the HDHomeRun. It is the easiest one to use by far, just plug it into the network and answer the questions that LinuxMCE asks you. Newegg carries it as well.

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2009, 05:23:44 pm »
http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/FAQ#Nothing_came_up_on_my_TV.21_What.27s_wrong.3F

sorry jimbodude,

I should have clarified.  I am using the vga output going to a regular computer monitor.  I can see and navigate the wizard and everything else so far.  What I can't see are the wizard videos.  I can hear the lady speaking instructions but the window where I should see her is black.  Everything else on the monitor is perfectly viewable.

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2009, 05:26:59 pm »
if all you need is a digital tuner (OTA is actually 8VSB, not QAM ;) ) then look into the HDHomeRun. It is the easiest one to use by far, just plug it into the network and answer the questions that LinuxMCE asks you. Newegg carries it as well.

Interesting.  I thought the wiki said QAM but I very easily could be mistaken. 

I do see that recommended across the forums but I would prefer a card in my main machine.  I do see what happens around here when you buck the system.  Very often you end up with a system that doesn't work  ;).  I'll have to weight my options and do some more research before I take the plunge.  Then, prepare for me to cry about how what I bought doesn't work and how you are all suppose to fix it!  Just kidding!
« Last Edit: August 18, 2009, 05:31:54 pm by thezfunk »

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2009, 07:18:55 am »
Looks like I will be heading into my first reinstall.  On boot up this evening I was greeted with the gray screen of death as it's referred to around here.  Tried installing nvidia drivers that seemed to make things worse and deleting the orbiter and MD.  I just managed to royally screw stuff up.  Now where did I put that Kubuntu CD again?

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2009, 03:47:20 am »
So I finally got Kubuntu to reinstall.  I went ahead and tried to update the nvidia drivers straight away.  According to the wiki article http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Display_Drivers#Latest_Drivers you should use the command, "telinit 1" to shut down X-Server.  That didn't work for me.  Kubuntu would begin doing so only to hang.  I searched the webternets to discover a command that worked for me.

sudo /etc/init.d/kdm stop

That finally stopped X-Server so that I could install the latest Nvidia drivers.  They actually seem to be working since I am back in KDE and the version matches what I installed.

Hooray!

Next step.

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2009, 06:56:46 am »
Well then.  I got 0810 LinuxMCE installed again.  First boot I got a blue screen that said, "Failed to start X".  Couple of reboots later I realized I needed to start some looking.  I didn't find anything on the forums or wiki about my specific problem so I decided to just try reinstalling the 185.18.31 Nvidia drivers I had installed before installing LinuxMCE over Kubuntu.  It worked!  I love it when a stab in the dark solves the problem. 

I can actually see the video as well as hear it now in the wizard.  My resolution shows up correctly.  I did choose UI1 just for compatibility sake.  I don't want to ruin something now that it's working.  I think the advanced UI should work but I don't want to break it quite yet.

The only other issue I ran into and saw elsewhere on the forum is the first boot when the AV wizard started properly, my video was being output on the DVI port by default and I had to grab my DVI to VGA converter for a bit.  Just another FYI.

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2009, 07:05:18 am »
Another issue.

I redid the UI with alpha blending and it seems to work well!

The problem is I tried to go to the KDE desktop and now it has an error that says:

The following installation problem was detected while trying to start KDE:
No write access to '/home/my user name/.ICEauthority'.
KDE is unable to start.

If I can't get to KDE desktop how do I get a console window open?

Any ideas?
« Last Edit: August 20, 2009, 07:35:18 am by thezfunk »

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #11 on: August 21, 2009, 03:31:15 am »
I still can't get to the KDE desktop but I did remember I can use Putty from another machine.  So, that's what I have been doing in the mean time.

DVD playback

It wouldn't work.  I would get the DVDCSS error.  I searched all over the forums and the wiki.  What the wiki suggested I do didn't work and the forum posts pointed me in the right direction but nobody ever posted exactly what to do.  I even tried running a program for setting region codes.  http://linvdr.org/projects/regionset/ That didn't work either.

TO THE INTERNETS!  Luckily, I found information through Google.  Google = My LinuxMCE buddy.

This is what I did to get DVD playback from my drive to work. I ended up installing Restricted Formats https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats#Ubuntu 9.04 ,8.10, 8.04 and 7.10 and libdvdcss https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats/PlayingDVDs#Ubuntu 8.10 (i386, amd64)

Exact commands for 0810:

Restricted Formats:
sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras

libdvdcss:

sudo apt-get install libdvdread3 gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly
then
sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread3/install-css.sh

I still need help with the major KDE fail.

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2009, 06:32:09 am »

The problem is I tried to go to the KDE desktop and now it has an error that says:

The following installation problem was detected while trying to start KDE:
No write access to '/home/my user name/.ICEauthority'.
KDE is unable to start.

If I can't get to KDE desktop how do I get a console window open?

Any ideas?

Judging from what I have found, this is a permissions issue within Kubuntu not LinuxMCE.  Now I just have to figure out the solution.

EDIT:  I have found the suggestion of deleting or changing the permissions to the .ICEauthory file in the home directory.  I have tried both and it still doesn't work.  Now though, LinuxMCE dumps me to a gray screen with a white pointer when I try to go to the KDE desktop.  This one has got me stumped!
« Last Edit: August 21, 2009, 07:16:09 am by thezfunk »

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2009, 07:49:28 am »
I did get the ALSA drivers updated!  Again, specifics were either lacking or didn't work from my searches here so I went out to the greater cloud and found something that did work.
http://www.mail-archive.com/alsa-user@lists.sourceforge.net/msg24828.html

I followed those instructions and updated to the newest ALSA drivers and all sound still works.

thezfunk

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Re: thezfunk LinuxMCE Project build
« Reply #14 on: September 01, 2009, 05:55:50 am »
Well Ok,

I was at a stopping point, until today!  I received my HDHomeRun from Newegg.  It was 138 bucks with a special promo code.  I put it on the internal network and LinuxMCE just found it and started setting everything up.  The only issue is when I went to set it up in MythTV.  Everytime I would setup a video source it wouldn't take anything I did.  Everytime I hit 'Finish' it would crash? back to LinuxMCE.  I am not sure why or how I fixed it.  Eventually, using the keyboard, I navigated the menus and it took the info without crashing back to LinuxMCE on one attempt.  I don't recall doing anything special it just suddenly worked.  Now I can watch TV.  I haven't gone much past that.  I still have a lot to do with it before it would be fully usable but I got a channel scan done and I can view the channels.  Just a quick update today.