Lothar's Build Log R0.2.3

Sep 29 2008

Well, it's time for another update.  I have to be honest with you.  I started this build at the beginning of July (right after my trip to Atlanta) and at that time I really didn't think I would still be working on it today.  As you may have intuited from my recent guide on Installing Ubuntu and Mythtv , I now have Ubuntu loaded on my frontend with Mythtv loaded on top of that.  The reason that I ended up with Ubuntu, as I mentioned previously, is that it will properly load the AMD video drivers for the integrated 3200HD graphics chipset used on the 780G motherboard that I'm using.  My frontend is now in a usable state and is sitting back in my entertainment center.

Well that's about the best that I can say though at this point.  For some reason, the only video rendering I can get to function properly right now is copying the pixels directly to video memory.  All other modes (such as the standard xv) have a common issue: the video will play properly, with sound, for about 1.5 seconds and then all will go black.  If I disable the sound device (ie set the output device to null in Mythtv) then video plays properly.  If I leave the audio on then the only output that worked was the one I described earlier.  At this point I'm not entirely sure what the issue is.  If you have any ideas, I'm open to suggestions.  I have no doubt that I will be able to resolve this.  I also believe that the video drivers will have good video acceleration in one of the next releases.  I look forward to that.

So let's take a trip down memory lane...   Here were my original goals:

  1. Replace the previous frontend functionally. 
  2. Rip all of my DVDs into Mythtv.
  3. Get virtualization working.

Here's where things sit today:

  1. Undecided Still not quite there but getting closer
  2. I haven't had time to get to this yet but after checking storage recently I found that I have only 300GB left on my 1.5TB server...
  3. For the moment I have stopped playing with virtualization and have decided to stay with a dual-boot system for the time being.

There are still a few minor things that need to be configured besides the video before I am fully back to where I was with the old setup.  The first is the ability to suspend the system.  The second is the ability to launch and kill Mythtv.  Launching Mythtv isn't a problem but for some reason the script that I used earlier won't kill it, just launch a new frontend.  I haven't looked at suspend that closely.  Hopefully it won't take that much to fix.

I'm a little concerned over the video issue.  I intend to look into why it stops on me after a couple of seconds but if I can't figure it out relatively soon I may very well buy a cheap Nvidia card until the drivers mature more and then throw it into my server.  We'll have to wait and see.

That's all for today.  Feel free to drop a line in our forums if you have any ideas about my video issue or even to say "ha ha, you should use Windows."  Tongue out