Development guide

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MythTV Development Howto

So you want to know more about the development of MythTV? Well, first, almost all of the development activity goes through the mythtv-dev mailing list. When you have an interesting idea, subscribe to mythtv-dev, review its archive, and ask if anybody else is working on it. Some people might want to help you with figuring things out, and on the other hand, you might also be of assistance to existing efforts.

I can't program. Can I help?

Of course, there are lots of things that can be done without being a code wizard:

  • Help documenting new features (Documentation often lags behind features).
  • you can work on internationalizing/translating the product if you have language skills.
  • Creating a new themes (Create new looks for MythTV).
  • Help writing and editing material right here on the Wiki
  • You can improve the manual for MythTV
  • Test new features: One does not need to be a developer to help testing. This way the developers can work on while you help testing.

You can find a summary and an explaination how to get started in the how to help page. Just choose how you can help best.

I've got this great idea...

Ultimately, this project's direction is Isaac's to control.

But, some users have taken the time to suggest items to go on a Feature Wishlist. If you are a developer looking for a project, this might be a place look for some ideas proposed from the user community. Understand that these features may not represent what the project maintainers are looking for. A quick note to the myth-dev mailing list with your intentions will often result in feedback on the viability of your ideas in the project.

Often, your idea might already exist -- it's a big project, and the features are sometimes a little tricky to find. Before spending time developing a new concept, try these steps:

  • Look through all of the settings pages in MythFrontend and setup. Sometimes the feature you want isn't in the place you'd expect, or it's using a different name.
  • Read the keys.txt file in the Myth distribution. Many options are documented here, and you may not know of their existence.
  • Search Trac reports to see if someone's submitted a bug report or feature request. You may be able to help by adding more information and clarifying the original report.
  • Search the mythtv-dev archive to see if someone's already discussed the feature. It may have been rejected because of some unforeseen consequence, or someone may already be working on it.

I can program, how can I help?

If you are new to developing Myth, these pages can help you through the process:

  • Some guidelines for writing code are on the Coding Standards page.
  • When your code is ready for the public, check the Submitting Bug Fixes page for information on how this is done.


In the Plug-in development guide we will explain you in a few simple steps how you can build your own plugin for MythTV. All this is explained in a Walk-through example having you build your first (Hello world)plugin within 30 minutes (no need to read any other stuff on this site).

Developing MythTV themes

Required skills: Light technical knowlegde, feeling for layout and design

If you are interested in creating a new theme, than you can read:

Other developer sources