OpenSuSE 11.3

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Revision as of 15:50, 24 July 2010 by Comrad Kev (talk | contribs) (Added trouble-shooting to Graphic Drivers.)

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Benefits of using openSUSE 11 for mythTV
  • Best hardware support available
  • Super fast software installation (package management) based on libzypp
  • openSUSE 1-click install technology, packages or package bundles can be installed with 1 click (No need to compile)
    • mythTV packages are available as a bundle with 1-click install on pacman
    • restricted formats (proprietary, patented formats) like MP3, Codecs, encrypted DVD support etc. are available with 1-click install on opensuse-community
    • proprietary video drivers for both AMD/ATI and NVIDIA are available with 1-click install
    • additional packages for the advanced user are also available with one 1-click install from (e.g. lcd support)
  • New and super fast installation, completing in roughly just 35 minutes (including mythTV software)
  • Good openSUSE, mythTV documentation and a friendly community ;-)

read more

Hardware considerations

Installing mythTV all starts with good hardware. The first requirement is a machine capable of running openSUSE x86 or x86-64 and that can be connected to the Internet. You will also need a decent audio card and a video card, a hard drive with as much storage space as you desire, as well as a TV tuner capable of performing hardware-level video encoding. Many people run mythTV without any problems on older hardware; however, if you are planning on doing anything with high definition video or complex transcoding jobs, you will need to have sufficient memory and processing power. Check this wiki and the mailinglist before you purchase any new hardware.

You might also find it useful to look at if you build a machine for your living room, in order to get advice on low power-consumption, low noise setups.

Wikipage.png - Bare_Bones_System mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - Cases mythTV wiki page


Join the community and get some help
Subscribe to the mythTV users mailing list

mythTV user mailing list

mythTV user mailing list archive

Chat with other mythTV users

IRC #mythtv-users

Initial system setup and considerations

Partitions and File Systems

OpenSuSE ships with a number of different file systems. Each file system has its own advantages and disadvantages that can make it more suited to a scenario. Professional high-performance setups may require a different choice of file system than a home user's setup.


Use Ext4 as your default file system. Consider using XFS for your video data. XFS is very good at manipulating and deleting large files and performs well on high-end hardware.


Make sure you understand what hardware you have - especially if you have issues an need to Google.

lspci -v and lsusb and hwinfo


Wikipage.png - File Systems mythTV wiki page

Webpage.png - SUSE Linux Enterprise documentation about file systems

Install mythTV software on openSUSE

STEP (1 of 2) - Multimedia

Read restricted formats. If you are OK with installing the restricted formats, place the installation DVD into the reader, and run the following as root.


 # Make sure you are up-to-date
 zypper update
 zypper update
 # Add the restricted formats.
 zypper addrepo -f libdvdcss
 zypper install ffmpeg flash-player libdvdcss libxine1-codecs w32codec-all lame
 # Install Framework
 zypper in dvb libid3tag mysql php5 xine-ui fame libcdaudio libfame MPlayer phpPgAdmin pvm transcode apache2 yast2-http-server apache2-mod_php5

Those Outside North America

 zypper install -l perl-xmltv xmltv xmltv-grabbers

STEP (2 of 2) - mythtv

Packman does not yet have Mythtv, so we'll do it manually:

As a normal user:

  1. Download from
 bunzip2 mythtv-0.23.tar.bz2
 tar xvf mythtv-0.23.tar

As root, in directory where tar file is:

 zypper install make gcc-c++ libqt4-devel libmp3lame-devel alsa-devel
 # Something in here was required (likely libQtWebKit-devel).
 zypper install ibus-qt-devel libQtTapioca-devel  libQtTelepathy-devel libQtWebKit-devel
 ./configure --prefix=/usr/local
 make install
 mv database/mc.sql /usr/local/share/mythtv

Configure mythTV server components (mythbackend)

The server components within mythTV are referred to as the mythbackend.

Because the configuration of the mythTV application itself is not openSUSE specific, you find mainly links to the information. Documentation

Wikipage.png - Manual mythTV wiki page

Start required services

Make sure all required system services are running on startup: As root start 'yast2 runlevel' and enabel the following services and click OK after popup dialog

  • ntp
  • mysql

Notice there is a mythbackend option, would suggest that you do not enable "mythbackend" just yet, until you have tried running in a terminal window as below. If all steps below work then enable this to run.

Information.png Tip: You can manually add things to /etc/init.d/boot.local. After initializing and processing the boot procedure the boot.local script us executed, which can execute the local commands.

Create the database (mysql)

mythTV uses MySQL to store it's settings, listings, recording schedules, and other information. So we have to make sure openSUSE starts MySQL when it boots, and we have to initialize the database with some basic information that mythTV can work with. The database is probably the most important component of mythTV because without it, absolutely none of mythTV can function.


1.) The MySQL deamon (mysql) is not started automatically by default after a reboot. As root start 'yast2 runlevel', select mysql and make sure it's started at boot time.

2.) Create the database If the database is not started, start mysql (as root) by typing

/etc/init.d/mysql start

Watch for errors. Set up a root password by typing

mysqladmin -u root password <yourpasswordhere>

Once MySQL is setup, install the mythTV Database. This is done by running:

mysql -u root -p < /usr/local/share/mythtv/mc.sql

(and key-in the previously entered password) You should see no output - this is a good thing!

By default, the database is named mythconverg and contains a set of tables that interact with one-another.

Information.png Tip: make the database multi user, so you can access it from more than 1 machine; this will assign a user named "mythtv" with a password of "mythtv " to the "mythconverg" database:

mysql -u root -p mythconverg

You will then be connected directly to the database. Enter the following commands at the mysql> prompt.

mysql> grant all on mythconverg.* to mythtv@"%" identified by "mythtv";
mysql> flush privileges;
mysql> quit;

MythTV backend setup application (mythtv-setup)


The server components within mythTV are referred to as the mythbackend.

Because the configuration of the mythTV application itself is not openSUSE specific, you find mainly links to the information. Documentation

Wikipage.png - Manual mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - User Manual mythTV wiki page

When everything works. The mythserver process (mythbackend) is not started automatically by default after a reboot.

As root start 'yast2 runlevel', select mythbackend and make sure it's started at boot time.

Digital Video capture card (DVB)


If you are lucky, your DVB device is automatically detected and drivers are automatically loaded. More information about Linux support for DVB cards can be found on:

In general:

1.) Check if your card is auto detected by Linux - You can see this in YaST / TV settings

2.) Google and find out if you need/can define your card manual in YaST / TV settings

3.) load the kernel module(s) for your hardware (if auto detected it's automatically done) YaST will write the modprobe settings to /etc/modprobe.d/tv. Alternative you load the kernel modules (drivers) with the modprobe <drivername>.

4.) See if everything get started

dmesg | grep dvb

Check if devices are created

ls /dev/dvb*

If there is no /dev/dvb* device - the driver does not support your hardware

1.) Check (and update) the hardware specific section on the mythTV wiki

Wikipage.png - Hauppauge_WinTV_Nova-T_500_PCI mythTV wiki page

Analogue Video capture card (IVTV)

A TV capture card, also called a TV tuner card, is a device that receives TV signals and converts

them into a digital format. With a minimum of one TV tuner card installed, you can watch and record TV by using your mythTV system. If you install a second TV tuner, you can record or watch TV from more than one channel at the same time.

Configuration Tips
Check the IVTV console output with dmesg
dmesg | egrep -i '(ivtv|tveeprom|tuner)'

Your output should look something like this example from the Hauppauge PVR500:

ivtv:  ==================== START INIT IVTV ====================
ivtv:  version 0.x.x (tagged release) loading
ivtv:  Linux version: x.x.xx.x-default SMP mod_unload gcc-4.1
ivtv:  In case of problems please include the debug info between
ivtv:  the START INIT IVTV and END INIT IVTV lines, along with
ivtv:  any module options, when mailing the ivtv-users mailinglist.
ivtv0: Autodetected Hauppauge WinTV PVR-150 card (cx23416 based)
ivtv0: loaded v4l-cx2341x-enc.fw firmware (262144 bytes)
ivtv0: This is the first unit of a PVR500
tuner 1-0043: chip found @ 0x86 (ivtv i2c driver #0)
tuner 1-0060: chip found @ 0xc0 (ivtv i2c driver #0)
tuner 1-0061: chip found @ 0xc2 (ivtv i2c driver #0)
cx25840 1-0044: cx25843-23 found @ 0x88 (ivtv i2c driver #0)
wm8775 1-001b: chip found @ 0x36 (ivtv i2c driver #0)
ivtv0: Encoder revision: 0x02060039
The lspci command can give you more information about your card and tuner
lspci | grep -i itv
Your output should look something like this example from the Hauppauge PVR500:
03:08.0 Multimedia video controller: Internext Compression Inc iTVC16 (CX23416) MPEG-2 Encoder (rev 01)
03:09.0 Multimedia video controller: Internext Compression Inc iTVC16 (CX23416) MPEG-2 Encoder (rev 01)
Check if the firmware is installed in the correct location
ls /lib/firmware -l
  • license-end-user.txt
  • license-oemihvisv.txt
  • v4l-cx2341x-dec.fw
  • v4l-cx2341x-enc.fw
  • v4l-cx2341x-init.mpg
  • v4l-cx25840.fw
  • v4l-pvrusb2-24xxx-01.fw
  • v4l-pvrusb2-29xxx-01.fw

Check what version of ivtv is installed

To check what version is installed, issue the command:

rpm -qa | grep ivtv

Your output should look something like:


The IVTV configuration is maintained by YaST and it is not recommended to edit the file directly. To see the configuration of the device
cat /etc/modprobe.d/tv

Your output should look something like this example from the Hauppauge PVR500:

alias char-major-81 videodev
options i2c-algo-bit bit_test=1
# YaST configured TV card
# Uog3.chCB1CyIbw9:WinTV PVR 150
alias char-major-81-0 ivtv
# YaST configured TV card
# ZvjX.sZc4ePByvkF:WinTV PVR 150
alias char-major-81-1 ivtv
alias char-major-81-2 off
alias char-major-81-3 off

Reload the ivtv module manually
rmmod ivtv
modprobe ivtv

Check if the video devices are available to the system
ls /dev/vi* -l

Your output should look something like this example from the (dual tuner) Hauppauge PVR500:

lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 6 Dec 29 06:27 /dev/video -> video0
crw-rw----+ 1 root video 81, 0 Dec 29 06:27 /dev/video0
crw-rw----+ 1 root video 81, 1 Dec 29 06:27 /dev/video1
crw-rw----+ 1 root video 81, 24 Dec 29 06:27 /dev/video24
crw-rw----+ 1 root video 81, 25 Dec 29 06:27 /dev/video25
crw-rw----+ 1 root video 81, 32 Dec 29 06:27 /dev/video32
crw-rw----+ 1 root video 81, 33 Dec 29 06:27 /dev/video33

The above is for a PVR-500. Here is what each device corresponds to in this case:

Tuner unit #1: - For your info

/dev/video0 – The encoding capture device (Read-only)
/dev/video24 – The raw audio capture device (Read-only)
/dev/video32 – The raw video capture device (Read-only)
/dev/radio – The radio tuner device
/dev/vbi0 – The "vertical blank interval" (Teletext) capture device

Tuner unit #2: - For your info

/dev/video1 – The encoding capture device (Read-only)
/dev/video25 – The raw audio capture device (Read-only)
/dev/video33 – The raw video capture device (Read-only)
/dev/vbi1 – The "vertical blank interval" (Teletext) capture device

Check (and update) the hardware specific section on this page and the dedicated mythTV wiki pages

Wikipage.png - Video capure cards on the mythTV wiki page

Hauppauge PVR-150
Hauppauge PVR-150

Wikipage.png - Hauppauge_PVR-150, single tuner mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - Hauppauge_PVR-150, with IR Blaster support mythTV wiki page

Hauppauge PVR-250
Hauppauge PVR-250

Wikipage.png - Hauppauge_PVR-250 mythTV wiki page

Hauppauge PVR-350
Hauppauge PVR-350

Wikipage.png - Hauppauge_PVR-350, single tuner and TV-out mythTV wiki page

Hauppauge PVR-500
Hauppauge PVR-500

Wikipage.png - Hauppauge_PVR-500, dual tuner mythTV wiki page

If you are lost; here are some screenshots of mythtv-setup for a PVR-500 in the Netherlands.

Remote Control (LIRC)

There is a very good chance that this information is out-of-date. I highly recommend a wireless keyboard instead of a remote control:

  • They are more dynamic/useful (not as specialized).
  • They are are cheaper (big bonus).
  • You won't loose them as easily (big bonus). Some may say their size is a draw-back, but they are thin and fit

under chairs very easily!

  • /etc/sysconfig/lirc = Hardware config file

You must install the lirc kernel modules package that corresponds to your installed kernel.

sudo zypper in lirc-kmp-default

Information.png Tip: You can check the kernel version from the command line with 'uname -r'. The word 'desktop' in the below example means a default kernel (in most cases the only other possibility is 'bigsmp').

 # uname -r

You must edit this file so that lirc knows which device to use. For example, if you have a PVR-150 make the following changes:


See PVR150 Remote for more information.

Information.png Tip: If your lirc kernel module is working and detects the card properly you will see the device /dev/lirc appear when lirc is started. If that device does not appear check /var/log/messages and dmesg for clues. Also, it has been reported that a full cold boot is sometimes required to bring the PVR150's IR back to life even going so far as to remove the card from the motherboard for a few moments. Be sure to try this before taking any other drastic steps (such as compiling lirc from source).

  • /etc/lircd.conf = LIRC remote control configuration file that maps scancodes to logic functions (like value to play, poweroff, pause etc.)
  • lircrc = Application specific mapping of the remote functions (play, poweroff etc) to the app specific functions for mythTV, mplayer and or Xine
Every application that you want to control with your remote (and has support for remote control) needs it's own lircrc configuration file.
The lircrc maps the keynames defined in lircd.conf (example: poweroff) to an application specific function (example: exit application). Make sure that the key names in lircrc should correspond with the same button names in lircd.conf.

  • mythTV = /home/user/.mythtv/lircrc
  • xine = /home/user/.xine/lircrc (TODO: check if this is correct)
  • mplayer = /home/user/lircrc

Information.png Tip: Instead of creating an individual lircrc file for each application, you can create one master file and put symbolic links to this in the appropriate places. The command for creating a lircrc file in your /home/userid/.mythtv directory, symbolically linked to lircrc in your home directory, follows:

ln -s ~/.mythtv/lircrc ~/lircrc


The LIRC deamon (lircd) is not started automatically by default after a reboot.

As root start 'yast2 runlevel', select lircd and make sure it's started at boot time.

The lirc deamon does not start without a configuration file. Please make sure your create the configuration file before you start lircd.

  • Copy/rename the file to /etc/lirc.conf.
  • Start /etc/init.d/lirc deamon and try irw, irxevent, mode2
  • TODO: howto get a sample ~/.mythtv/lircrc - google for a lircrc for your remote - try the mythtv remote control wiki pages
  • there can be only one, make sure you have 1 lircrc file for mythtv. Create links to it.
  • the ~/.mythtv directory is user specific and created in the users home directory when he starts mythfrontend for the first time and ask for an ip address of the backend. If you don't have a ~/.mythtv directory, start mythfrontend first. The directory is hidden, try ls -al.

example: /etc/lircd.conf

Play      0x00007be9

The lircrc is application specific, here your define that the 'Play' key is the same as function 'P' (P is by default Play in mythfrontend)

example: ~/.mythtv/lircrc

    prog   = mythtv
    button = Play
    config = P


Webpage.png - Official LIRC page

Wikipage.png - LIRC mythTV wiki page


Wikipage.png - ATI Remote Wonder mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - Hauppauge WinTV Nova T500 Remote Control mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - iMON mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - Logitech Harmony 880 mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - Microsoft MCE Remote mythTV wiki page

Wikipage.png - more Remote Control mythTV wiki page

Graphic Drivers

See SDB Hardware to see if there may be a better driver for your graphic card. If you have trouble, view Configuring Graphic Cards.

Web frontend (mythweb)

MythWeb provides a frontend for scheduling and managing recordings on your mythTV system from a web browser located on another machine. In OpenSuSE, start YaST and goto the HTTP server menu (commandline: yast2 http-server)

follow the menu's by next,next,next,next and click the HTTP Server Expert Configuration, here you see a tab with 'Server Modules'

The Rewrite module is disabled by default - Enable this option

The Env module is disabled by default - Enable this option

Securing mythweb

If you plan to open your mythweb to the internet, you should seriously consider securing it. That and more information can be found here. Follow the section specifically for openSUSE here

Security Example for mythweb

To secure your Mythweb you can configure the access to it. For example you can set up 'limit access'. It will ask you for an username and password if you try to access the mythweb page. It's very simple:

First make a file where you store the username and password for a user.

htpasswd2 -c /etc/apache2/htpasswd <username>

Type in a password (2x)

Then just add the lines below in your http.conf or default-server.conf

<Directory "/srv/www/htdocs/mythweb">
 AuthType Basic
 AuthName "Mythweb Login"
 AuthUserFile /etc/apache2/htpasswd
 Require user <username>

Restart apache

rcapache2 restart

If you now access the Mythweb (http://ip number/mythweb/) it will ask you for an username and password.

Information.png Tip: You can access your MythWeb remotely if you know your IP address. However, if you are a DHCP client, your IP will probably change. To resolve the issue of having an IP address that is constantly changing, you can sign up for an account with a dynamic DNS site (such as and create a unique unchanging hostname that can be forwarded to your IP address - even if it changes.

Tips and tricks

Using Firefox as integrated Mythbrowser

In Opensuse 11 just changing the configuration setting in Mythbrowser to /usr/lib/firefox does not work any more. To make it work create a file in the Mythtv home directory i.e. /home/mythtv/

The script should contain something like:

shift #shift down the arguments that were passed so we can access the url
/usr/bin/firefox $9 --fullscreen  #what was argument 11 (the url) becomes 9
echo $* #show all the passed arguments

Make the file executable

chmod +x /home/mythtv/

To finalize change the default browser Utilites/Setup->Setup->Info Center Settings->Web Settings->browser box. to /home/mythtv/

See Also