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Configuration Files

Core/MD Hybrid

  • This is a one network card installation
  • There is no capture card/MythTV in this setup
  • There is no phone system control in this setup


  • Asus T3-P5945GCX Barebones with 3.00GHz Pentium 4
  • Nvidia GeForce 6600 256 MB PCI-E 16x Video Card (DVI Output)
  • 2 GB Generic RAM
  • 80 GB Seagate ST380215A Hard Drive (for the OS and temporary media storage)
  • 1 TB Western Digital 10EAVS External Hard drive (for media storage)
  • DVDRAM GSA-4167B

Peripherals and Accessories

  • 24 inch Sceptre LCD Monitor (DVI)
  • 5.1 Channel Creative Sound System
  • Gigaware microphone
  • Generic USB 5 Button Wireless Optical Mouse with Scroll Wheel
  • Generic Wireless PS/2 keyboard
  • Ezonics EZCam USB Webcam
  • Microsoft NX-6000 Webcam
  • Generic 7-port USB Hub
  • USB Bluetooth Dongle with CSR chipset
  • HP Deskjet 2545 USB Printer


  • LinuxMCE 0810 beta2
  • lmce-activate-orbiter-plasmoid
  • kubuntu-restricted-extras
  • libdvdread3
  • xbindkeys
  • xautomation
  • alsamixer
  • VNC/Remote Desktop Viewer
  • BlueProximity
  • ssmtp
  • mailutils

X10 Devices


  • Controller: CM11A
  • Remote: KR22A


  • LM465 is dimmable
  • AM466 is not dimmable
  • RR501 is not dimmable and is a remote control receiver (Can only be unit code 1 or 9)
 Device Code | Module | Description
      B1     | RR501  | Sound System Power
      B2     | LM465  | Floor Light
      B3     | LM465  | Light Tree
      B4     | LM465  | Desk Light
      B5     | AM466  | Monitor Power
      B6     | AM466  | Rope Lights & Strobe Light
      B7     | AM466  | Fan
      B8 ------------------------------------------
      B9     | RR501  | Black Lights

The Installation

  • This is a one network card installation
  • There is no capture card/MythTV in this setup
  • There is no phone system control in this setup
  • Single quotes (i.e. 'sudo apt-get install foo') represent commands to be typed into the terminal
  • Web Admin can be accessed by going to http://localhost on the core or by going to http://<core-network-IP-address> from a computer on the network. The login and password are both the name of the first user name (beware of capitalization!)
  • Some sections assume the completion of preceeding sections
    • Skype setup assumes completion of the sound setup
    • Many assume KDE starts on boot
    • Remote Desktop and others assume Firewall is disabled
    • Probably others as well

LMCE 0810 beta2 Installation

  1. Follow the internet installation instructions located here
  2. Upon reboot, temporarily hook the monitor to VGA to go through AVWizard
  3. Choose DVI output, 1080p, 60 Hz, OpenGL with Alpha Blending, stereo sound, 100% volume, and hit I Agree
  4. Upon finishing the AVWizard, there is a grey screen with large text displaying each package that is installed
  5. This continues until it gets to the Orbiter Regeneration
  6. After the orbiter regeneration, I receive the infamous grey screen with a cursor
  7. Use Ctrl+Alt+F2 to get to tty2, and log in
  8. Edit the /etc/network/interfaces file as seen in the configuration files section
  9. After rebooting, the Setup Wizard starts up which steps through the rest of the install process
  10. That's it, after some more big text, MCE starts up fine and begins displaying Flickr pictures on the screensaver

Auto-start KDE desktop behind MCE on boot

  • By default, the KDE desktop environment only starts if you click "KDE desktop" on the OnScreen orbiter
  • To get certain programs and services to run, it is easiest to have KDE startup behind the OnScreen orbiter on boot
  1. Edit /etc/init.d/linuxmce to contain the line shown in the configuration files section

Activate Orbiter Button

  • Once you go to KDE from the on screen orbiter, there's no good way to go back besides reloading the router or clicking on OrbiterGL on the taskbar which rarely works
  • The plasmoid might work, see those instructions here
  • This did not work for me, so I did this instead with much more reliable results:
  1. Open terminal and type 'sudo kate ~/Desktop/'
  2. In the window that appears, paste in the file from the configuration files section
  3. Save and exit this window
  4. Now run 'sudo chmod 755 ~/Desktop/'
  5. Right click on an empty area on the Desktop plasmoid and click "Link to Application"
  6. Replace "Link to Application" with "Activate Orbiter"
  7. Click the ? icon to choose an icon (I made it tux)
  8. Go to the "Application" tab
  9. In the "Command" box enter "~/Desktop/"
  10. Click OK
  11. Click on the newly created shortcut to bring up the OnScreen orbiter
  12. Drag onto the desktop to make it act like a plasmoid

Disable Phone Systems

  • Since this system doesn't do any phone system control, they can be disabled to save time and resources
  1. Web Admin > Wizard > Devices > Core
  2. Uncheck the "Telecom Handlers" box
  3. Click Update
  4. Web Admin > Wizard > Scenarios > Telecom Scenarios
  5. Uncheck each scenario
  6. From the OnScreen orbiter click Advanced > Advanced > Reload & regen all orbiters
  7. Telecom scenarios should be gone
  8. On reboot, core should not try to start the phone devices any more (except the orbiter embedded phone, which seems to regenerate itself if you delete it)

External Hard Drive

  1. After plugging in the external hard drive, a message comes up asking what to do with it
  2. After selecting "use without modifying" the drive is set up by MCE
  3. Web Admin > Files & Media > Media Files Sync
  4. Navigate to the hard drive and resynchronize Movies folder and Music Folder

Configure 5.1 Channel Sound

  • Selecting stereo in the AVWizard does not enable multi-channel analog audio...this is how to fix it
  • Here is this because I will want it later
  1. Web Admin > Wizard > Devices> Media Directors
  2. At the bottom of the media director device settings, change the "Audio Settings" Drop-Down menu to "Multi-channel analog"
  3. Open adept (K menu > applications > add/remove software)
  4. Do a search for "alsa" and then choose the "Settings" category on the left
  5. Select to install "Default sound card" and then click preview and apply changes to install it
  6. Once installed go to K menu > applications > settings > asoundconf-gtk
  7. Choose the intel sound card and quit
  8. Reboot the computer
  9. There should now be a speaker icon in the task bar, click it and then click "mixer"
  10. By default, my surround, center, and LFE (subwoofer) were muted...
  11. Unmuting and adjusting the volume on these works for testing, but they will be set back to these values on reboot
  12. 'sudo kate ~/.kde/Autostart/'
  13. Paste in the script as seen in the configuration files section, the levels and mute/unmute status will be set on startup
  14. Save the file
  15. 'sudo chmod 755 ~/.kde/Autostart/'
  16. Reboot the computer to test this and make sure they are properly set

Get DVDs to play

Instructions grabbed here

  1. Open Terminal
  2. 'sudo apt-get install -y kubuntu-restricted-extras libdvdread3'
  3. 'sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread3/'

X10 interface and lighting setup

  1. Plug in all the X10 modules and give them the unit codes described above
  2. Plug in the CM11A controller and hook it to the serial port
  3. Follow the directions here.
  4. Reload the router and regenerate orbiter when it asks to
  5. Tested each module with the Lights > Floorplan button in MCE

Set lighting scenarios

  • By default, lmce gives you Sleep, Wakeup, and House to sleep mode as the Lighting Scenarios
  • Scenarios can be added, deleted, and modified
  1. Web Admin > Wizard > Scenarios > Lighting Scenarios
  2. Click on the scenario to be edited or Add Scenario to make a new one
  3. Choose "Advanced Wizard" from the drop down menu
  4. Choose the items you wish to turn on/off/leave unchanged/set level
  5. Set any media settings (volume level, pause, etc)
  6. Set any security settings (security mode, etc)
  7. Click Update
  8. Once all scenarios are made and configured, go into the OnScreen orbiter and go to Advanced > Advanced > Reload & Regen All Orbiters
  9. Once everything is regenerated and reloaded, the scenarios should now be available by clicking "Lights" on the OnScreen or other orbiter

Internet Radio Channels

Instructions grabbed here

  • If you have a few favorite internet radio stations, you can set them as their own scenarios
  • I will use, but other radio stations should work very similarly
  1. Web Admin > Wizard > Scenarios > Media Scenarios
  2. In the description box, type the name of the channel (Trance)
  3. In the Entertain Area, select the Bedroom(Master)
  4. Choose the Xine Player device
  5. For type, select "LinuxMCE Audio file"
  6. Click Add
  7. Click Edit to the right of the new scenario
  8. In a new window go to the radio station of choice and download the channel playlist (the playlist provides links to each mirror)
  9. Go to that file on that computer and right click > open with
  10. Choose a text editor
  11. Copy the URL of one of the file names (
  12. Paste that into the File Name field of your scenario
  13. Click Save
  14. From the OnScreen orbiter click Advanced > Advanced > Reload & Regen All Orbiters
  15. Once that is finished, there should be a button for that station under "Media" on the orbiters

Set alarm clock scenarios

  • I like to use my room as an alarm clock since I have a very regular weekday schedule
  1. Web Admin > Wizard > Events Handler > Timed Events
  2. Type a name for your alarm "Wake up" or "Alarm clock" are suggested
  3. If you have a human wakeup schedule, choose "Day of the Week based" and click "Add"
  4. This window is very self explanatory, check the days you want to wake up, and choose when you wish to do so
  5. Go ahead and select "Bedroom(Master)" as well, this should let you turn on and off the alarm using the web orbiter or some other orbiter
  6. If you just want lights to turn on, select "Lighting Wizard" from the drop down menu and select the lights that way (its easier)
  7. If you want to set the volume, play your favorite internet radio station, etc...use "Advanced Wizard"
  8. Media commands can be found under "DCE Router > Media plugin"
  9. Playing an internet radio station can be done by using the "MH Play Media" command in the Media plugin
  10. If you followed the steps from the last section, this shouldn't be too hard (Entertain area is a number (I only have one room, so mine is 1), Media type is 4) could also copy these settings from the "MH Play Media" command in the scenarios you created last section

Disable the Firewall

  • Since this is a single-nic installation, I don't find the firewall very necessary, and it makes other features easier to get working if it is disabled
  1. Web Admin > Advanced > Network > Firewall Rules
  2. Check the "Firewall Disabled" box
  3. Click OK on on the warning dialog

Access Features outside of the Network

  1. Create an account at
  2. Register a host name for your Media Center using the free DNS service
  3. Web Admin > Advanced > Network > Dynamic DNS Settings
  4. Enter the information you just registered with
  5. Check the "obtain IP address from the web" box
  6. Click Save
  7. Web Admin > Wizard > Security > Outside Access
  8. Check "Allow outside access on port: " and specify port 8080
  9. Click "Update"
  10. If the Media Center is behind a router, port 8080 will need to be forwarded to the Media Center's IP or name

(This process is slightly different for each router but in my case, the router configuration was located at, Most home routers will have the IP or

  1. On a computer with internet access, you should be able to go to http://<your-dyndns-hostname>:8080 and bring up the Web Admin
  • Sometimes attempting to use http://<your-dyndns-hostname>:8080 while on the same local network won't work, so have a friend test it out or try it on a web-enabled cell phone
  • If that isn't working, maybe MCE needs a router reload or a computer restart

Enable the Web Orbiter

Instructions grabbed here

  1. Web admin > Show Devices Tree > Core
  2. Create Child Device at the top
  3. Pick Device Template
  4. Device Category: Peripherals
  5. Template ID: 1748 (Generic Web Device)
  6. Pick device template
  7. Wait until orbiter generation is finished (progress can be seen at Wizard > Devices > Orbiters)
  8. Quick Reload Router
  9. My proxy orbiter had problems starting up, so I rebooted the whole machine to get it all working nicely
  10. Access the web orbiter by going to http://<core_ip>/lmce-admin/weborbiter.php or clicking the link on the login page of the web admin on any computer on the network
  11. Orbiter settings and preferences can be set at Wizard > Devices> Orbiters and then regenerated accordingly
  12. Assuming previous steps to "Access Features outside of the Network" were followed, web orbiter can be accessed by any computer on the internet by going to http://<your-dyndns-hostname>:8080 and clicking on the link on the login page or by going to http://<your-dyndns-hostname>:8080/lmce-admin/weborbiter.php directly

Enable remote desktop

  1. Go to the KDE desktop on the Media Center
  2. K Menu > Applications > Internet > Desktop Sharing
  3. Click "Configure"
  4. Click "Security"
  5. Check the "Allow uninvited connections" box
  6. Check the "Allow remote connections to control..." box
  7. Uncheck the "Ask before..." box
  8. Enter a password
  9. Click Apply and OK
  10. Use VNC or Remote Desktop Viewer from another computer to control it

Enable Network File Sharing

  • This seems to be enabled by default in LMCE 0810 beta2 so just get on a network computer and connect to \\dcerouter and login
  • External hard drive should be accessible directly or through /public/other/

Assign Functions to mouse buttons

Instructions grabbed here

  1. BACKUP xorg.conf: 'sudo cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf /etc/X11/xorg.conf.backup'
  2. edit /etc/X11/xorg.conf mouse settings to look something like that in the configuration files section
  3. run 'xev' in terminal and single click each mouse button in the box that appears, paying attention to the output in the terminal to make sure each button number is correct (if it doesn't you have some trouble shooting to do here)
  4. 'sudo apt-get install -y xbindkeys xautomation
  5. Create the file ~/.xbinkeysrc ('sudo kate ~/.xbindkeysrc')
  6. Modify as seen in the configuration files section
  7. Run 'xbindkeys -n -v' (not as daemon, verbose) to test the configuration
  8. Once the configuration is how you want it, add xbindkeys to the startup of KDE by running 'sudo cp /usr/bin/xbindkeys /home/matt/.kde/Autostart/' in terminal
  9. Upon restart, the configuration should automatically take effect
  10. I often have to click the middle mouse button while in the OnScreen orbiter to get them to start responding, for some reason

Bluetooth Proximity Control

  • Using the bluetooth signal from a phone or some other device that you routinely carry in your pocket, the computer can automatically detect when you enter and leave the room (or at least the general vicinity)
  • This method isn't so good when multiple Media Directors are being used, because bluetooth can only connect and monitor signal strength between one pair at a time
  1. Upon insertion of the bluetooth dongle, MCE should automatically recognize it and set bluetooth up for you
  2. After this, it may ask to reload, regen, etc
  3. If any bluetooth devices are in the area and visible, MCE will ask you if you want to use them, etc
  4. My phone is not supported as a mobile orbiter, so I clicked "do not use"
  5. Once all that is done and the dongle is setup, go to the KDE desktop
  6. Web Admin > Wizard > Devices > Security
  7. Click "Add Device"
  8. Under Device Template, select "Generic Sensor" and click "Pick Device Template"
  9. Select "Bedroom(Master)" from the drop down menu on the left and rename the sensor "Bluetooth sensor"
  10. Click Update at the bottom
  11. Make note of the device number at the top left corner
  12. In terminal run 'sudo apt-get install blueproximity'
  13. Run BlueProximity by going to K menu > Applications > Utilities > BlueProximity
  14. Right click the BlueProximity icon (bluetooth icon with key) and click preferences
  15. Put your bluetooth phone or device in discoverable/visible mode (See device's documentation)
  16. Click on "Scan for Devices"
  17. When it has finished scanning, click the desired device and then "Use Selected Device"
  18. A pairing request should then appear on the phone, accept it and enter a passkey
  19. Enter that same pass key on the computer when it asks
  20. If your phone gives the option, choose "Always Connect" (This will automatically connect the phone and media center when they are in range of each other)
  21. The sliders in the "Proximity Details" tab can be adjusted to the proper settings for being outside the room (Locking) and inside the room (Unlocking)...this takes some trial and error to get the right setting, but be patient and it will work
  22. In the "Locking" tab, replace the "Locking command" with "/usr/pluto/bin/MessageSend localhost 54 -1000 2 9 25 0" replacing 54 with the device code of the generic sensor you created
  23. Replace the "Unlocking command" with "/usr/pluto/bin/MessageSend localhost 54 -1000 2 9 25 1" again replacing 54 with the device code of the generic sensor
  24. Erase the "Proximity Command"
  25. The generic sensor will now be tripped when the phone is in range, and untripped when it is out of range
  26. Web Admin > Events Handler > Respond to Events
  27. Set the description to "Bluetooth enters room"
  28. Choose "A sensor is Tripped" in the drop down menu
  29. Click Add
  30. Set what device to "= Bluetooth Sensor"
  31. Set trigger state to "tripped = 1"
  32. Click update
  33. Choose "Lighting Wizard" from the drop down and select the lights you would like to turn on/off/set level/leave unchanged when you enter the room
  34. Repeat the last 8 steps, with the description "Bluetooth leaves room" and the trigger state "tripped = 0" for the lights you want to turn on/off, etc when you leave the room
  35. After a reload router/orbiter regen...and possibly a full should have proximity set up for you to leave the room and come back in
  36. Fine tune the sliders in BlueProximity to avoid lights turning off unintentionally Note: BlueProximity commands are only in effect when the window is closed...watching the atm distance slider and waiting for your lights to turn off does NOT me...
  37. If BlueProximity doesn't start up on boot (I think it does by default) 'sudo cp /usr/bin/blueproximity ~/.kde/Autostart/blueproximity'

Using multiple phones

  • It is possible to recognize two or more more phones entering and leaving the room, here is how
  1. Assuming you finished the previous steps and got it working with one phone, open BlueProximity (the bluetooth icon with the key in the bottom right)
  2. At the top you will see "Selected configuration" click on "New"
  3. This creates another profile to watch at the same time as the other one, go to the "Bluetooth Device tab"
  4. Set your phone into discovery mode, scan, select the new phone, and then click "use selected device"
  5. This device will now follow the same instructions as the first phone, but this can be modified by clicking the other tabs
  6. To modify settings on each phone, click the dropdown list at the top and select the phone you want to change


  • There is a fundemental flaw in this setup, which can be worked out, but its a little troublesome
  1. Katie and Daniel have their phones both set up flawlessly according to the previous directions
  2. Katie comes home from work and walks into the entertainment room, the Media Center senses that her phone entered the room and turns the lights on for her
  3. Katie chooses to watch a movie and dims the lighting accordingly
  4. As she is watching the movie, Daniel comes home from work and joins her in the entertainment room
  5. Again, the Media Center senses his phone entering the room and turns the lights on for him
  6. Katie, upset, storms out of the room
  7. The Media Center senses Katie leaving, and turns the lights off for her
  8. Daniel stands in the dark alone cursing at the Media Center

How this COULD be solved

  1. In BlueProximity, there is the "proximity command" in addition to the locking and unlocking commands...this command is sent out at regular intervals as often as once every 5 seconds
  2. If each phone had either its own sensor, or its own trigger value, using this command should let the media center keep tabs of who is in the room
  3. The as long as the Media Center senses someone in the room already, it could choose to ignore the fact that someone else came in
  4. It could also then be able to notice if someone was still in the room when one left
  5. This, however, is all theoretical and would probably require some script writing in there somewhere to keep track of who is in the room


  • As long as you all agree to never throw a fit when the above situation happens, using multiple phones for bluetooth proximity is quite simple
  • However, if you can picture the exact situation above happening to you...this may not be a good idea

Email/text message alerts

Instructions grabbed here

  • Alright, here is a good one...I like to have verification that my room turned off after I left, so I have it text my phone to let me know when the lights are off
  • The same methods could be used to send email/text alerts for really anything, I'll leave that to your imagination
  1. First, you need an email account...I don't know which ones do/don't work for this besides the fact that Gmail works for me
  2. If you have a Gmail account, great! If not, you may want to get one...
  3. Now that you have a Gmail account, go into terminal and type 'sudo apt-get install ssmtp mailutils'
  4. 'sudo kate /etc/ssmtp/ssmtp.conf'
  5. Fill out this file in accordance with the configuration files section
  6. Make a new script 'sudo kate ~/Desktop/' and put in the script in the configuration files section
  7. Make it executable 'sudo chmod 755 ~/Desktop/'
  8. Test this new script by typing '~/Desktop/' into terminal
  9. You should receive a text message or email to wherever you specified in the script
  10. Now, to make this script run automatically, open up Web Admin > Wizard > Events Handler > Respond to events
  11. Click edit on the "bluetooth leaves room" event we made earlier (or something else, if you desire)
  12. Choose "Advanced Wizard" from the drop down menu if it isn't selected already
  13. In the drop down menu at the bottom, choose the "App Center" device
  14. From the available commands, choose "Spawn Application" and click "Add"
  15. Leave everything blank except for entering the file name: "/home/matt/Desktop/" where matt is your login name for the computer
  16. Press "Test Command" and wait a few seconds to verify that the script runs and the message makes it to your phone/email
  17. If that all works, hit save, and quick reload the router
  18. If it asks to do an orbiter regen, go ahead and do that as well
  19. Now, with any luck, you should be able to take your phone out of the area, have the lights turn off, and be alerted of the event
  20. Make a few new scripts to text you about whatever you want!

Webcams and Skype

Ok, this ended up being obnoxious, and I got information from all here is what SHOULD work...but I am typing this after the fact

  • There is some information on getting the NX-6000 working with gstfakevideo...but this doesn't seem to be necessary and I had better luck with the other method of pre-loading ""
  • I have 2 webcams, one is an ezonics ezcam that will be used as just a security camera later...the other is the Microsoft NX-6000 which I use only for skype

Basic webcam preparation

  1. 'lsusb' should show both cameras
  2. 'ls /dev/vid*' should show video0 and video1
  3. Make note of the vendor and product ID of the NZ-6000 (045e:00f8)
  4. 'sudo kate /etc/udev/rules.d/95-webcam.rules'
  5. Enter the information in the configuration files section making sure to replace the vendor and product id with those from the lsusb
  6. 'sudo /etc/init.d/udev restart'
  7. 'ls /dev/vid*' should now show video0 and video5(because of the previous configuration, video0 is the EZCam and video5 is the NX-6000)
  8. Before going crazy, go into the user manager (K menu > applications > system > User manager), find your user name (matt in my case) and add it to the "audio" and "video" groups...a reboot will be needed to put this into effect, but it can wait until after the driver update

Install the newest UVC drivers

  1. 'mkdir ~/UVC'
  2. 'cd ~/UVC'
  3. 'wget'
  4. 'tar -xzvf tip.tar.gz'
  5. 'cd uvcvideo...' there is a string of numbers after uvcvideo, use tab completion
  6. 'make'
  7. 'sudo make install'
  8. 'sudo depmod -a'
  9. 'sudo modprobe uvcvideo'
  10. 'sudo reboot' to make sure everything takes effect (including the group changes made in the previous subsection)

Test out the NX-6000

  1. 'sudo apt-get install luvcview'
  2. 'lucview -d /dev/video5' That should bring up the NX-6000 based on the setup done earlier

Enable the v4l1compat preload

  1. 'sudo mv /usr/bin/skype /usr/bin/skype.real'
  2. 'sudo kate /usr/bin/skype'
  3. Insert the code in the configuration files section
  4. Save
  5. 'sudo chmod 755 /usr/bin/skype'

Fix Skype

  1. Run Skype (K menu > applications > internet > Skype)
  2. Try to log in
  3. If this throws an the error "Another Skype instance may exist", run 'sudo chown -R matt.matt ~/.Skype/' replacing matt.matt with your username.username
  4. Go into the video options (S > options > video devices and try to test video5 (the NX-6000)
  5. If this crashes Skype, start it again, and try to make a video call...sometimes the test doesnt work, but video calls work fine

Set the Skype options

  • Once Skype is working and tested, it should be set to startup on boot, log in, and then act a certain way
  1. Check the box that says "Sign me in when Skype starts" on the login screen and log in
  2. Go into S Menu > Options
  3. Click the "Start a Call" bubble in the General section
  4. Make sure the "Start Skype minimized to the system tray" box is UNCHECKED
  5. In the Privacy section, check the "Automatically answer incoming calls" This doesn't actually work with the next sub-section, so you may want to leave it unchecked
  6. In the Sound Devices section, make sure all devices correctly work by making selections and Making a test call
  7. Uncheck the "Allow Skype to automatically adjust my mixer levels" box in the Sound Devices section
  8. In the Video Devices section, make sure the top two boxes are checked
  9. Also in the Video Devices section, choose video5 from the dropdown menu and check the "anybody" bubble
  10. Click Apply at the bottom then click close
  11. Quit Skype (S Menu > quit) and then Restart it to make sure the settings were all saved
  12. For some reason I was having troubles saving files, until I set them one by one, applying and restarting skype after each
  13. Once all those are set and good, have someone call you and give it all a test (it should automatically answer and bring up their video without you pressing anything)
  14. 'sudo cp /usr/bin/skype ~/.kde/Autostart/skype' should make skype start on boot

Set things to work right with MCE

  • With this setup, Skype audio seems to be overpowered by any media playing in MCE, this should help things
  • This should also make the call window remain visible in the OnScreen orbiter instead of disappearing when anything is clicked (Allowing a change in music, etc without interrupting the call)
  1. Add a new sensor (Web Admin > Wizard > Devices > Security > Add device)
  2. Name it "Skype sensor" and set it to "Bedroom(master)"
  3. Take note of the device number at the top left and click "Update"
  4. Open Skype and go to S menu > options > Notifications
  5. Click "Incoming call ringing" and the "Advanced view" button on the right "Call Answered" does not apply to automatic answering
  6. Check the bottom box for "Execute the following script"
  7. Much like the bluetooth proximity, put in the command "/usr/pluto/bin/MessageSend localhost 55 -1000 2 9 25 1" replacing 55 with the device ID
  8. Go to "Call Hungup", check the same box and enter the command "/usr/pluto/bin/MessageSend localhost 55 -1000 2 9 25 0" again replacing 55 with the device ID
  9. Put this same code in "Number busy", "Call failed", "Call missed", and "Call Ended"
  10. Click apply and close
  11. The "Skype sensor" will now be tripped whenever a call is active
  12. Web Admin > Wizard > Events Handler > Respond to Events
  13. Type "Skype call" in the description, choose "A sensor is tripped", and click "Add"
  14. Set What device to "= Skype Sensor"
  15. Set "tripped = 1" and click "Update"
  16. Now choose the "Advanced Wizard"
  17. From the "Device" drop down menu find "Core > core/hybrid > OnScreen Orbiter > Xine player"
  18. Scroll down to "Pause" in the command drop down menu
  19. Choose any other commands you wish to activate upon receiving a call
  20. Repeat the last few steps for the "Skype end call" event which has sensor "tripped = 0"
  21. From the "Device" drop down menu find "Core > core/hybrid > OnScreen Orbiter > Xine player" again
  22. Choose the "pause" command again (This will UNpause the media, rather than sending "play" which starts it over)

Set the window rules

instructions grabbed here

  • This section isn't quite finished, but I am putting it on hold for the time being so that I can move on to other sections
  • While in the OnScreen orbiter, it is impossible (or at least difficult) to answer the call without going to's the fix
  1. Open terminal and type 'sudo apt-get install devilspie'
  2. 'mkdir ~/.devilspie'
  3. 'kate ~/.devilspie/skype.ds'
  4. Put the code in you see on the configuration files section
  5. Save the file and then run 'devilspie' in terminal
  6. Quit and re-run skype (not just put it to the taskbar)
  7. Now return to the OnScreen orbiter and have someone call you, if auto-answer is on, the call should appear above everything else and not disappear when going through menu's, etc...if auto-answer is off, you should be able to now click the answer button and have the call remain on top
  8. To make sure devilspie starts on boot-up 'sudo cp /usr/bin/devilspie ~/.kde/Autostart'
  9. Right now the devilspie code doesn't work right for answering a call, and the pausing configuration doesn't work if auto-answer is on...looks like I have some more work to do

Webcams as security cameras

instructions grabbed here

  • Those instructions walk through it fairly well, but I will step through it as well
  • This should all work well if the drivers and such are installed...otherwise, there could be problems
  1. From the previous section regarding Webcams and Skype, I have two cameras hooked up to USB, one dedicated to Skype, and one dedicated to being a security camera
  2. The Skype camera should be assigned to /dev/video5 every startup and so I shouldn't have to worry about it in this setup
  3. Web Admin > show devices tree (bottom left)
  4. Click on the device to which the camera is connected (in my case, CORE)
  5. At the top left of that page, click "create child device"
  6. Put a name for the motion wrapper in the description (This is not the camera itself, but the controlling device for any attached camera...I named mine "Motion Wrapper")
  7. Click "Pick device template"
  8. Either find "Motion wrapper" in the device template drop down, or type the template id #64 and hit go
  9. Click "Pick device template"
  10. Now that you are on the property page for the motion wrapper, create a child device of that (top left again)
  11. Name the camera as you wish (I called mine "Camera0" to correspond with /dev/video0)
  12. Either choose "Generic Analog Camera" in the device template dropdown, or enter the template id #66
  13. Click "Pick device template"
  14. In the properties that come up, make sure you put the device number (/dev/video0) in the first box
  15. The other settings can be adjusted depending on how you want the camera to behave
  16. Restart the router (Web Admin > Wizard > Restart > "Quick Reload Router") to make these settings take effect
  17. If motion wrapper doesn't start, you may need to restart the computer
  18. The camera should now be able to be viewed on the OnScreen orbiter by going to Security > Floorplan
  19. You can also view the camera in the web admin by going to Web Admin > security > view cameras
  20. If this isn't working, new drivers may be necessary

Install the newest gspca drivers

instructions grabbed here

  • The Ezonics EZCam USB is a CPiA/gspca camera, so I will install the newest drivers from here
  1. I can't get this camera to work, and have been trying for the last few I'm going to move on to another section

Use your own pictures for the screen saver

  • Default installation grabs pictures from Flickr and makes them the screensaver, if you want to add some of your own pictures or get rid of the Flickr pictures and use only yours, you can
  1. Copy the pictures you want to use to /home/public/data/pictures/ this step is optional
  2. Web Admin > Files & Media > Screen saver
  3. This should bring up a file tree on the left side that allows you to choose any pictures under the /home directory, and set them as screensaver pictures (that's why the last step was optional, but I recommend it for organizational purposes)
  4. Once you find the pictures you would like to use as your screen saver, they should appear with thumbnails and a checkbox beside them
  5. If you check the boxes beside your images and click "Save" at the bottom, they will be added to your screen saver
  6. You may have to click "reload screensaver" at the top or quick reload the router before you start to see them on the screen

Get rid of Flickr pics

  • If you don't want the Flickr pictures to be there at all, they can be deleted and instructed not to download
  1. Web Admin > Files & Media > Screensaver
  2. On the page that comes up, there is a button labled "Disable flickr script" that can be clicked to disable the future downloading of Flickr pictures
  3. There is also the option to delete the pictures that have already been downloaded using the next option on the page
  4. The default path should be right, change it if necessary...then hit remove
  5. Reload the screensaver and possible the router if necessary


  • By setting up a torrent client with a web interface, you can tell the media center to download what you want, and have it download in the background and magically appear in your collection when it is done!
  1. K menu > Applications > BitTorrent Client
  2. Settings > Configure KTorrent
  3. Under Plugins, check the "web interface" box and click apply
  4. Now in the left column, select "Web Interface" at the bottom
  5. Choose a different port because MCE uses 8080 (I use 8081)
  6. Make a user name and password and click apply
  7. Go to the "Application" section on the left column
  8. Check "Move completed downloads to" and direct it to a folder in the public home folder (you may have to 'sudo mkdir /home/public/data/other/torrents' first)
  9. Click apply and ok
  10. I had to 'sudo chmod 777' the directory where I wanted to put torrents as well
  11. If you want to be able to access this interface from the internet, you must also forward this port as discussed in a previous section
  12. Add KTorrent to the startup:'sudo cp /usr/bin/ktorrent /home/matt/.kde/Autostart/'
  13. Now you should be able to access the web interface on any computer by going to http://<media-center-ip>:8081 inside the network or http://<media-center-domain>:8081 on the internet
  14. Download away!


  • Apparently there has been some work done to integrate hulu desktop and I am going to look into it and see what I can do

Command the CORE with text messages

  • Theoretically, shouldnt be too bad...maybe I'll try that