User:Itsmeok

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Reason for this page

This page describes my journey into LinuxMCE as a newbie. I did not have a lot of linux knowledge but really wanted to have a single system for all my media. I saw the video on You Tube on the functions of LinuxMCE and was sold. It has all my wanted media features and I hope to be able to explore some of the other options in the future. I am writing this wiki as a give back to the community of LinuxMCE who has helped me to become more familiar with Linux and MCE. A big thanks for everyone who tried to point me in the right direction or answered my questions.

   
User:Itsmeok

I hope this page will help other new users with ideas or a kind of menu on things they want to do with MCE. It also links a lot to the Wiki pages and forum threads that helped me implement some of the functionality. Sometimes I found it hard to find the correct wiki pages to answer my questions. I then used google to search and added the search term Linuxmce and was often succesfull. Otherwise the forum was my source for information.

Please feel free to comment on this effort or give additional ideas. I will open a thread on the user forum to do so. Offcourse I will provide the link to the tread ones I start it.


At the end I added a TO DO list of things that I still want to accomplish or solve. If you want to help please do so. Send me a message or add a link to a page that you think is benefitial


My current setup:

  • Case: still have to buy a nice HTPC case, still using a normal desktop
  • Motherboard: ASUS A7V8X
  • Graphic adapter: ASUS V8420 De luxe
  • memory: 1,5 GB (768 MB worked fine aswell)
  • Screen: Philips matchline widescreen 100 HZ screen 82 inches connected with S-VHS
  • Sound card: Onboard currently only using two channels (stereo). I had a little issue with the sound
  • TV tuner card: Hauppage Win TV-Radio (not working yet)
  • Orbiters: XP laptop, PDA HP Ipaq 2210
  • Mouse: Logitec MX AIR

Done so far

Interesting reading:

Create Wiki pages:

  • How to create your own pages on the wiki and wiki instructions to categorize them.
  • Create a user page
  • Document your hardware used in the hardware cathegories
  • Add troubles you found while using instructions on the wiki on the instruction page

Tips: check how other build their wiki pages by copying from other pages and do not forget to categorize the pages.

Installation:

Backup:

Create regular backups of configuration files. Goto the LinuxMCE Admin Website-->Advanced -> Configuration -> Backups. Press the Backup button and the backup is created. You can download it to store it on another system for if you need to reload a system. More information on backup and restore can be found on the wiki.

Changed Resolution displayed on my TV: You can change resolution configuration in Admin of LinuxMCE. Goto the LinuxMCE Admin Website-->Media directors (under devices in the tree on the left side of the screen). Change the Video setting of the director.

Installed Orbiter on PDA and Windows XP Laptop:

Installing the orbiter software on the PDA and Windows XP is well described on the wiki. Be sure to choose the 3:4 screen setup for the PDA to get the orbiter on full screen on your PDA.

Changed ripping formats for CD:

All my music I have in MP3 format 320 Kb. I changed the standard ripping format to refelct this using the LinuxMCE wiki.

Set screensaver to use my own pictures:

I did not wanted the screensaver to show the FLICKR pictures but pictures from my own collection on the media center. The proces for doing this is described on the wiki. As it is a long explanation I will quicky write down my procedure.

Switch off automatic update media daemon:

Switching off the automatic media update daemon is not a best practise but I did this because it looked like it was taking a lot of CPU power from my system. I found out that this is not true. See this user [1] tread to see why I think it happend as also others found this happening at their system. If you switch off the daemon you will need to sync manually when you add media to your system. For me presonally this is not an issue because I am using a small system now. Maybe this is not a good idea to do for most people.

Formatted an additional drive:

I added an USB drive to my configuration as the disk in my system was not big enough to hold my media. As I am still in a testing stage I have enough capacity with an external USB disk of 320 GB. I have a Freecom USB disk that is power by USB. It has a 2,5 inch laptop disk and is extreme quiet. As it came with a windows partition I decided later to format it. This resulted in a issue that it was not recoqnised again. There is a procedure to clear the PnpQueue on the wiki that solved this issue.

Switch of autoplay:

I do not like it that CD or DVD entered in the drive play automatically. I switched this of based on the wiki

HellaNZB:

For downloading from newsgroup servers I installed HellaNZB

W32CODECS:

To play windows type files you can install additional codecs

DVD CSS:

For ripping protected DVD there is additional software that needs to be installed

Media:

Created media scenario for internet radio:

The creation of a media scenario for internet streams is well described on the wiki. There is an example on the page to test it. The test link is handy so you know that the problem is in the link and not in the scenarion setup.

The issues I had was to find the actual stream for internet radio as you need the direct link to the server. I thought about adding a page that contained some working internet streaming links. Feel free to add some links or state that a link is not working anymore. Before removing a link test the link also outside LinuxMCE to verify that it is really not valid anymore.

Sometimes you get an link to an ASX file. You can download this file to see the actual links to the stream.

Created media scenario for internet TV:

The creation of a media scenario for internet streams is well described on the wiki. There is an example on the page to test it. The test link is handy so you know that the problem is in the link and not in the scenarion setup.

I thought about adding a page that contained some working internet streaming links. Feel free to add some links or state that a link is not working anymore. Before removing a link test the link also outside LinuxMCE to verify that it is really not valid anymore.

Sometimes you get an link to an ASX file. You can download this file to see the actual links to the stream.

Add pictures to my media:

It is possible to add pictures to your media. I created a wiki page on this as there are different way to do this. When I am aware of current pages I will link to them and update or add stuff. You can add pictures in different ways:

  • automatically by querying external databases
  • manually by adding pictures through the MCE admin page

Other:

If you want to see your cpu or memory usage you can do this from a remote pc with for example a putty session. Command in a session is 'top'.

TO DO

  • look for new database for automatic pictures, add to forum post
  • Document the rest of the done stuff
*BTNX installation for logitech mouse
*Document media scenario tv stream
*play dvd iso files 
*Added covers to copied or downloaded dvd CD´s
*Backup


  • Remove internet stream links from my video section in the orbiter
  • Get nvidia settings loaded at start up
  • Look for slide show / playlist option for pictures
  • Install the games
  • Get my USB web cam connected
  • see if I can get video phone function to talk to people on skype
  • get familiar around mysql db
  • what is happening with tv media streams in the DB. Seems to add or remove / from the links.