24 thoughts on “MythTV on Ubuntu Natty”

  1. I have two dvb-t cards, two NOVA-T USB, they are recognize well but I’m feeding only one with antenna source.
    The question:

    May I duplicate the antenna cable that arrive to my computer? If so how to do that??

    Or may I configure some way mythTv???

    At the moment I configured the second frontend to the same input source, the result is that to record simultaneusly from different stream channel seems ok, but at the end only one program is recorded, the other one is 0Kb , and I suppose the problem is that its antenna source is not fisically connected… am I right??


    1. Depending on which Nova-T card you have, there may be an aerial out port as well as an input. If you only have a single aerial you can send that into the first card and use a very short cable to loop it into the second. That’s the was I do it with my setup and the quality is fine. If you do not have an aerial-out on you card, you will have to use an external powered splitter to split the signal in two with as little loss as possible.

  2. I had Mythtv working fine up till yesterday (Mythbuntu 11.04 with Mythtv 0.24) then I found no channels would work. On checking backend I found the device numbers for the two DVB sources had swapped. One was a DVB-S card the other a DVB-T USB dongle.

    This means it now tries to use the FTA card to find DTT channels and vice versa.

    How can you stop Ubuntu assigning a different number to the DVB card? I assume something in the startup delayed the USB from being recognised.

  3. Hi Justin,

    That’s a well know problem. There are a number of solutions. I don’t have the issue myself so I cannot give you exact instructions, but a couple of solutions are available on the MythTV WIKI:



    I would personally try the udev option, although the description in the link above is rather general and a little too detailed. You may be able to find more specific instructions by using the above pages as a reference and doing some further searching.

    Good luck!

  4. Thanks Garry!

    I’ll try and get the udev config working. It’s a real mess. You would have though with one device on USB and the other PCI that they would come up with the same device number consistently.

    Hopefully the raw devices can be differentiated so udev can generate unique device names.

    Might post this on mythbuntu forum as well.

  5. Set up the new device names no problem, but mythtv-setup doesn’t allow you to enter these in. It just picks up the same /dev/dvb/adapter[01]/frontend0 stuff.

    Is there a way to enter these manually?

  6. Yep. That sorted it! Kinda wasn’t obvious in the wiki instructions. Now have two reliable device names for these dvb adapers.

  7. Hi there,

    Fantastic site btw.

    I appear to have some problems with Mythuntu 11.04 recognising both my tuner cards:

    Hauppauge – Nova HD-S2 and
    Hauppauge – HVR -2200

    When I go to Capture Card Setup, “DVB DTV capture card (v3.x)” section, on the Nova Card comes up and I don’t get the “DVB Card Number”.

    Does this mean that the HVR-2200 is not usable with Mythbuntu or is there someway of getting it to work. I know that this is card is definitely working as I am currently using it with Mediaportal at the moment.


  8. Hi thanks very much for that – it does seem that I need to install the correct software. Sorry to be a pain but I really am an absolute beginner to Linux.

    It appears that I need to follow the following instructions but have no idea at all what to do:

    “I figured it out. I needed to install the latest drivers, like so:
    Upgrading drivers

    $ hg clone http://kernellabs.com/hg/saa7164-stable/

    $ make menuconfig
    $ perl -p -i -e ‘s/FIREDTV=m/FIREDTV=n/’ v4l/.config
    $ edit as needed but should have all enabled that is needed

    $ sudo make CONFIG_DVB_FIREDTV:=n || return
    $ sudo make install
    $ sudo reboot

    Upgrading firmware to the files in:

    Download new firmware from


    Now copy that into the kernel firmware dir.

    sudo cp *fw /lib/firmware/`uname -r`”

    Could you possibly just walk me through what I need to do – once I have done this once, it should help for all future installs.

    Thanks again.

  9. So you would run a terminal and cut and paste those commands into it. Left mouse button to highlight the text and middle one to paste. Don’t copy the leading $, that’s the prompt.

    The sudo prefix means run the command with admin (superuser) permissions. The first time you use this it will ask you for your password. That is your normal password which you logged in with. After that it remembers it and won’t ask again for 30 minutes.

    If you are very new to the command line, I would suggest reading up and becoming familiar with it before you start. It takes a bit of getting used to but is the most powerful tool on Linux. Try here to begin with:


    I cannot help much with the commands themselves as I don’t have a 2200 card.

  10. It is said that there are no stupid questions, so here goes: I would like to run MythTV as an application without messing with my Ubuntu (11.04 Unity) desktop.

    Is this possible?

  11. Yep.

    When you install it it adds an icon to the menus just like any other application. When you run it it just runs in a fullscreen window until you exit. No problem at all.

  12. Thanks for the useful guide!

    When I set up my system live tv was working fine. Now live tv starts in one channel and any other channel I try to change to, I get “Error opening jump program file buffer”. Scheduled recordings work fine, they all get recorded. When I select a channel in live tv there is a zero length mpg file created in the livetv directory. It seems that the front end cannot tune a channel but the back end manages fine.

    Somewhere along the line I changed my system name. After that it did not work and I recreated the database with the /usr/share/mythtv/sql/mythtv_0.24.0.sql script. My problem is probably related to that. I have tried all kind of settings in front end and back end but live tv still does not work. I also deleted my capture card and sources and recreated them.

    I am wondering whether to try uninstall mythtv and install again, or delete the database. Do you have any recommendation? What is the best way to delete and recreate the database? That script I used created a lot of guff in the database, it contains what looks like a lot of unneeded entries. I suspect that is the wrong script to use.

  13. I saw that bug report and others like it. However since I had it working earlier I had hoped to get it working again. In my opinion there is certainly a bug, but hopefully I can find a workaround for when this happens. If I find a solution I will let you know, and maybe post it in that bug log.

  14. Thanks for the excellent guide. It’s got me most of the way there – unfortunately the whole EIT / EPG thing is not happening for me.

    I’m running MythTV (from Synaptic) on Ubuntu Natty and using a TBS6981 DVB-S2 card.

    The card is working fine and I can watch TV via mplayer no problem. I can also watch live tv in MythTV frontend.

    The problem I’ve got is the EIT EPG data isn’t populating correctly. When I follow your instructions and input the starting frequencies before scanning I get a full channel list but no EPG data (the slots in the guide screen just say ‘unknown’.

    When I do a full scan on all transponders I get the occasional bit of data on the guide screen, but mostly it’s still full of holes.

    Any suggestions as to why this might be?

  15. Hi Phil,

    If you are getting the occasional bit of data then I can only assume you’ve got it set up correctly. How long have you left it? I seems to remember it takes quite a while to update the EPG for all channels (there are quite a lot of them on Freesat).

    You can also get extra EIT debug info by adding some extra logging to the mythbackend:

    /etc/init.d/mythtv-backend stop
    mythbackend -v siparser,eit,channel

    Also, see this bug report related to missing EIT data:


    Hope that helps!

  16. Hi Garry
    I solved the problem with the “Error opening jump program file buffer”. It was always starting live tv in a particular home shopping channel that I never want to watch and I could not change to any other channel.
    I looked in the channel table to find a channel that I actually wanted to see and updated the default channel like this:
    update settings set data = 1021 where value = ‘DefaultChanid’;
    After this, LiveTV started in that channel and now I can change channels as much as I want, no problems.

  17. Hi Gary,

    Thanks for the pointers – I managed to track down the problem.

    Starting the scan by manually adding the frequencies obviously wasn’t suitable for my particular setup and had corrupted the channels db.

    Deleting all the channels and starting again with a full scan on all transponders was the solution.



  18. I have a Nova-T-500 card and have everything set up following your instructions – thank you.

    However, all the recordings playback with a letterbox border at top and bottom. I cannot figure out a way to remove these. Are you able to help please?

    I am using a wide screen TV in the UK and recording Freeview.

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