MythTV & Slackware 12.1

With Slackware 12.1 coming out a while back, It is time to upgrade my mythbox to newest release and in the process update the how-to to reflect the latest changes..  Just in time with 12.1 release came new release for ivtv and lirc.  I’ve successfully upgraded to 12.1 with mythtv running flawlessly.  Check out the how-to and let me know if you have any suggestions/critiques at tuxrules AT mnspace dot net.

In addition to the updated how-to, slackbuilds have also been updated to the newest version.  There are now more slackbuilds than ever before on this site.  Please check out the slackbuilds section.

Enjoy! – NL

MythTV upgrade

Posting after a long time….I’ve just made changes to the mythtv how-to, making it more verbose at places and fixing some typos and language. I’ve also posted a short upgrade how-to on upgrading kernel (version, ivtv (0.10.0) and lirc (0.8.1) to latest stable release. Upgraded slackbuilds now reflect slackbuilds scripts from I’ve also added build scripts for mythtv and ivtv.

I will also be adding a few more build scripts for various other packages that I roll myself and use on the desktop. Check back the slackbuilds section mentioned above from time to time.

I’ve invested tremendous amount of time and energy into building the scripts and these how-tos. Please email me if these how-tos and scripts prove useful. Comments/critiques/patches/errata are all welcome at tuxrules.in_AT_gmail_dot_com.

Hopefully, people will find it useful enough.

MythTV setup on Slackware

This is an update from the previous post.  Things have changed since my last post on mythtv.  MythTV has gone to version 0.20Slackware 11 is here.  Since the last post, I’ve got a dedicated machine now to run mythtv.  The earlier setup (server + mythtv) was running fine but I wanted to keep the two entities separate.  Moreover, I had done enough testing to see that mythtv was working fine.  So MythTV gets a new machine and the old machine is reverted back to being a server.

I already configured slackware 11 with dropline gnome version 2.16.  MythTV is also up and running excellent.  Now I’m in the process of documenting a complete how-to on installing mythtv on slackware.  This is the first step towards it.  I will post a complete how-to here pretty soon along with build scripts for mythtv and other supporting software.

So…more later.  Stay tuned.


Linux & MythTV

It has been a long time since I posted something here.  It is about time.  Actually I wanted to build a mythtv box for quite some time now mainly because I would like to record cricket matches and I don’t want to work with VCR Tapes.  It is also equally true that I won’t buy a TIVO since it kinda looks pricey.  The biggest reason though is that I like to build it myself.  I already am a big fan of GNU/Linux and use it exclusively.  I have a webserver already running Slackware GNU/Linux so I thought why not make it a webserver-DVR combo using MythTV.  So far I’ve already bought hardware that I need…WinTV PVR-350 TV Tuner card and 300 GB Samsung IDE 7200 RPM Harddrive from NewEgg

I actually wanted to note some of my progress with the build.  I have already compiled and installed MythTV version 0.19.  I have also compiled and installed lame encoder which wasn’t installed on my slackware machine since I did a minimal install…(remember this was just a webserver before).

I’ve also installed LIRC software that is used to control the display (in my case the TV) with the Remote the comes with Hauppauge PVR-350 card.  As of now, LIRC is installed but not working or I cannot figure out a way to make it work. 

MythTV (both backend and frontend) is configured…and I’ve already grabbed the TV listings from Zap2It Services.

The progress is kinda stalled on TV-Out from the PVR-350 on the TV.  I’ve done some testing and my TV is not showing any video right now.  It doesn’t look like a big issue and may get resolved if I can get myself to do some debugging.

As far as the storage of video is concerned, I’ve bought a 300 GB hard drive and put IBM’s JFS filesystem on it.  This disc is exclusively for recording/storing/playing video.  The machine is going to be a webserver, database server, run mythtv backend and mythtv frontend.

Once everything is up and running, I am going to monitor it for few weeks to see if the CPU cries for help.  I think P4 1.8GHz CPU should pull that off easily but we’ll see…

That’s it for now.  More later.

End of an era…

Most people reading this won’t make much sense out of it.  The longest running scooter brand of India, Bajaj Chetak, has just went out of production and into the museum.  The Times of India is carrying the entire story.  After 30 years of successful run, Chetak is laid to rest. 

Chetak, namesake of Maharana Pratap’s battle-hardy horse, was adulated by the indian population for its performance and stability.  Chetak brings back the memories of India in 70’s and 80’s trying to modernize but bogged down by its own deficiencies.  The quota-system for Chetak resulted in a waiting period of 5 to 10 years.  Lot of people profited by selling their alloted scooters as Chetaks were resold with a huge premium.  I’ve personally seen this but it is hard for me to believe we went through that for a scooter.  Most indians in 70’s and 80’s were middle-class.  Cars were expensive and considered a priviledge, most people can only afford a scooter and Chetak was the only one that was both reliable, robust and maintenance-free.

Bajaj, which now produces more motorbikes than scooters, has since moved on to more westernized designs catering to the younger generation but the Chetak still remains the shining beacon of Bajaj.  It made Bajaj what it is today and won’t be forgotten from the public memory. 

Climate change

Is it a myth or reality? I would say absolute reality. We have growing evidence of things going awry due to human activity. Here is a recent study that once more confirms the scientific opinion in favor of global warming. I know there would be sceptics bouncing back with their own story but who’s buying?

For the uninformed, global warming is the increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere with resulting consequence to every living thing and natural cycles of earth. Wikipedia provides an excellent explanation to global warming. There are other excellent articles available all over the internet. Go to National Geographic and search for “global warming” to find hundreds of articles related to it. Wilder hurricanes, disappearing species, invading alien species, sea level rise, weather getting hotter and wetter. I can go on and on about the consequences.

After a long time…

I’m writing this after a long time. The blog has not seen much of activity lately. However, I have been busy as usual with work and a little bit of development I could possibly do. Nothing going on personal front as well. I’ve just finished building my first pc. It’s an AMD Athlon64 Dual core with awesome power…couldn’t ask for more (actually couldn’t afford more). Ended up spending about $1,000 on it. Here are the specs:

  • Xion II PC Case
  • AMD Athlon64 X2 – Dual Core Manchester
  • MSI K8N Neo4-F motherboard with 4 PCI slots, 1-16x PCI-Xpress, 1-4x PCI-Xpress and 1-1x PCI-Xpress. On-board Realtek ALC850 7.1 Channel Sound, on-board giga-bit LAN and RAID functionality.
  • Rosewill 1 GB PC DDR 400 RAM
  • 250GB Maxtor SATA Drive with 16MB Cache
  • 120GB Western Digital IDE Drive
  • Chaintech NVIDIA Graphics 6600 with 256 MB DDR RAM

Everything bought from Newegg. The pics are here for those who are interested.


Hello and a warm welcome to everybody reading this blog. Thanks for finding your way here and actually reading through. You would say who needs another blog there are already dime-a-dozen out there. Well I agree and that’s why I promise not to spit out lot of junk. I, however, have some interests in field of Technology (mostly Linux) and Environment, especially sustainable development. Hence, I would be talking about these subjects and some occasional fringe subjects. Till I come back with my commentary…adios and enjoy.

Don’t forget to bookmark this site.

p.s: You might have noticed that the site is not designed the way it should be. I absolutely agree but due to my busy schedule I hardly get time to work on development. Although I’m getting there little by little.