Motorola DCT-25xx

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Here's how I added a Motorola DCT-2524 (from Comcast) cable box to my RedHat Fedora Core 4 MythTV system. I have two PVR-250s (one connected to the cable box, one to 'standard' cable) and an HD5000 for OTA HD broadcasts. (updated for 0.23.1, and added download links for the channel changer without needing to download all of the mythtv tree - meaje)

I am controlling the DCT-2524 via its serial port.

First, make sure your distribution recognizes any installed serial ports (I can't imagine any modern distribution doesn't):

$ ls -la /dev/ttyS*

you should get something like: crw-rw-rw- 1 root uucp 4, 64 Jun 7 14:22 /dev/ttyS0

I am using the script included in MythTV (currently using 0.23.1) to allow MythTV to change channels at /usr/share/doc/mythtv-0.23.1/contrib/channel_changers: or use this link link dct-channel.tat.bz2

To unpack and test:

$ cd /usr/share/doc/mythtv-0.23.1/contrib/channel_changers
or if you downloaded the dct-channel.tar.bz2 file:
$ cd [directory where you downloaded the file to]
$ su
# tar -xjf dct-channel.tar.bz2
# cd dct-channel

Edit Makefile:

# joe Makefile

correct line 3 to be (note: the /share before /man/man1):

MANPATH = ${PREFIX}/share/man/man1

Note: if you do not have help2man installed when running the make step above it will create a help file that is useless. To fix this problem install help2man: on Red Hat type systems:

# yum install help2man

On Debian type systems:

# apt-get install help2man
# make
# ./channel 12 (make sure the channel exists!!)

This should have caused your cable box to change the channel to 12.

To install:

# make install

I changed the permissions on the serial port so that users other than root can use it:

# chmod 666 /dev/ttyS0

(Or better yet add your mythtv user to the 'dialout' group:) This way you have read/write access to the com ports under Linux known as /dev/ttyS0, /dev/ttyS1, /dev/ttyS2, and /dev/ttyS3 respectfully COM1, 2, 3, and 4. Without having to change the permissions of the serial ports each time you restart your computer.

# usermod --groups dialout [your mythtv user]

Go to and log-in. I added an additional lineup to my existing account using a different nearby zip code to differentiate between my standard cable lineup and my digital cable lineup.

To add the new line up to my system:

 # mythtvsetup (may not need to be root, I do or my HD5000 doesn't show up, not really needed for this...)
  • select new video source
  • name it something descriptive (eg comcast_digital)
  • enter your zap2it username and password
  • select retrieve line-ups
  • select the correct new digital line up (the one with a different zip code)
  • go to input connections
  • select the input connection it's connected to
  • change video source to whatever you named your new digital source (comcast_digital)

For the external channel command, type in:


you probably should set the tuner to 3 or 4 based on whatever your cable box is set for (I had difficulty with this for some reason, I ended up having to leave it blank to get it to work... go figure)

  • select finish
  • exit and run mythfilldatabase

I then went to: and unchecked the 'visible' box for all the channels I don't get or don't care about...

Hope this helps someone!! --Displacedtexan 22:22, 7 June 2006 (UTC)