Talk:MythTV on Mac OS X

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A section on the status of an Intel / Universal Binary build of MythTV would be useful. I'm looking for more information on that, along with trying to build it for myself..

Nigel says: there is more information here; Myth_on_Mac_x86 and Talk:Myth_on_Mac_x86. As far as I know, no-one has built a universal binary yet. If you have the time to investigate how, I will try to add it to the packaging script

Can someone add to the 0. Intro, what other packages are required for the "binary only" version. (ie is there a Qt runtime needed?) I DLed the binary only, installed it, and ran it. It asked me for my back-end IP, login/pw, then just sat there. A force quit and subsequent executions all just hang... what am I missing?

References to specific QT and MySQL versions

The guide for building "by hand" has references to ancient (and now wrong) versions of QT and MySQL. Surely this should be corrected, or moved to a page that says how to build older versions, should it not?

Features not yet Supported in the OS X version

Observed in MythTv 0.20.2:

  • Changing the aspect ratio using the W key (ticket #3523). Consequence: all tv is shown using the aspect ratio specified for recording from the video capture card, e.g. 3:4. This looks pretty bad when the tv signal is meant for displaying in a different ratio, e.g. anamorphic 16:9. Workaround: Maybe there is some way to change the recording aspect ratio while watching tv?. This has been fixed in MythTv 0.21-fixes, and is tagged for release in 0.22 ([1]).
  • Configuration of the actions assigned to the buttons on the Mac remote control.
    • Workaround: make your own build, changing the part of the code that binds buttons to actions. The Apple remote patch code for 0.20 looks like the right place to start (the patch also includes documentation of the current hardcoded bindings).
    • Workaround: install mythweb on backend, view settings and alter keybindings for any OSX frontends


As far as I can see only the Frontend of MythTV has been officially ported to Mac OS X.

Was the reason for the backend not being ported an Intel vs. PowerPC issue? If so then obviously this is no longer the case. Does this mean it will be more likely for the backend to now be ported? Considering Mac OS X (FreeBSD) and Linux are practically kissing cousins and that many other originally Linux developed packages (Samba, Apache, MySQL, etc.) have already been ported I cannot see what the problem is. [John Lockwood]

Nigel says: The backend wasn't ported because it is closely tied to Linux, and particulary V4L (Video for Linux) for analog capture cards. That is not the case any more, but getting it all working is quite difficult. I haven't had the time to try and build a working setup. The backend has been buildable (i.e. ported) for about 5 months, but it didn't do much. About 4 months ago, DBOX2 support was added to MythTV, which should work on a Mac backend. About one month ago, Mac support was added for FireWire and QuickTime input devices. So, as far as I know, the backend should work, but only about 2 people in the whole wide world have tried to use it

Syphax asks: I'm currently mulling between getting a Mac Mini and a DIY linux box for my home file server/web server/MythTV box. I won't waste your time with my requirements & preferences I have, but suffice to say that the Mac Mini would pretty much provide everything I want (except a HUGE harddrive), provided that MythTV backend worked. What expertise would be required to get it from its current status (ported, in theory) to pretty well-proven? I can't offer a lot of time or expertise, but if I go ahead and get the Mini I'll be highly motivated to help test and debug, at the least. --Syphax 17:04, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

Joann says: The backend is running on my G5 using the HDhomerun as an input device as of 2 May 2007.

I bought a mini and am now trying to set up MythTV. I'll report... Evertype 21:45, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

What's new in 0.21

How about some more detail on what has been changed, or what is expected in the 0.21 release for Mac OS X? The 0.21 release notes page has some high level information ( "Added MediaMonitor support, Improved audio timestamp calculations" ). This page would be a good place for some background information on those points, and detailing any other updates that didn't make it into the major release notes.

Maybe things like: (please add more)

  • AC3 pass-through support. This was fixed in the 0.21 branch, 0.20.* gives static.
  • Backend changes? I know people are using this with Mac OS now. Was anything updated to achieve this?
  • DVDV (MPEG2 Acceleration) updates? There are commits in July07 relating to DVDV, but I have found no information on status or direction.
  • OpenGL rendering support? Or, more generally, Mac OS X video output improvements: Core Video, OpenGL, DVDV, Quartz, GLSL Acceleration, etc. Any info on the directions with respect to Mac OS X video?

Any other Mac related changes for 0.21? (Or, anything else in the pipeline for post-0.21? The Mac stuff is often lost in the noise of the Linux version.. Having a place for ongoing status would be very useful).

Daily Builds

> If there is a problem with one of the builds, please let me know from my home page.

There is no contact information at all on, and no comment section for the downloads. So how exactly do I contact Mr. or Mrs. Snider, and which of them is responsible for the builds? Zwhite 03:05, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

- Sorry about that. My email address is dsnider (at) I added a contact section for registered users so that it is more accessible in the future.

- I needed a nightly build a couple of days ago, and noticed at there hadn't been any built at thesniderpad for a few weeks... and so to fullfill my need, I built my own, and in the process decided heck to just automate it and make them available as another source if people needed them.

I didn't want to edit the main article without permission so I'm just announcing it here for now. If you need to ask reach me, you can at

Merge Varios Mac pages

We should really merge the various pages together: Myth_on_Mac_x86

Maybe - but maybe not. For people using the current revisions of Myth, there's pretty much no need for the other page, everything just works. But, for people building older versions for use with their older backend, it's nice to have that information available. Maybe leaving the other page as historical information (with notes making that clear) would be ok.

Apple Remote

Is the behavior of the Apple Remote documented anywhere? I have been unable to find it. ( I later found it on the trac ticket adding apple remote support: )

I just stumbled upon the Pause/Play behavior (hold down the Play/Pause button causes a play/pause event. Tapping that button marks your present spot). A list of the actions on tap/hold for each button in the various MythTV modes would be very useful. Also, being able to customize the behavior would be great (e.g. I would much rather have Play/Pause as the tap event).

You can customize the Apple Remote (as well as numerous others) for the OSX frontend using Remote Buddy[2] Now, if only someone could figure out how to raise the priority of Remote Buddy during MythFrontend playback so you don't have to press a key twice to make something happen...

Keybindings can be altered in the settings menu using mythweb. Try changing the "Pause" setting for TV Playback from P to P,Enter to support the play/pause button on the apple remote.

Slimming down

The script provides a nicely packaged version of MythFrontend, which is used by several people to provide a downloadable version. One problem with this is the frontend binaries are pretty huge, weighing in at 100MB+. gzip/bzip2 can help this, but only so much. Slimming it down might help to make it more accessible to new users, and could help things like using it on AppleTV.

What do others think about making the default build a bit slimmer, and having something like "--build-all" available for a complete version. Or, go the opposite way and have a "--minimal" build option. Or, if not that, then at least including some instructions here for creating a smaller version.

Some areas for possible savings:

MythPlugins. Some infrequently used plugins can take a lot of space. libmythflix.dylib is about 5MB, libmythnews.dylib is 3.8MB. MythArchive is also a big space contributor, but it's not listed among the plugins to choose/leave. (I don't know if the "-plugins" options are honored in the script. I selected only "mythdvd,mythweather,mythvideo" but, several others were built (mythflix, mythnews, etc.)

Themes. These take a lot of space, and currently it's an all or nothing option ( -themeskip ). Being able to specify certain themes, like you can do for plugins, could help this.

i18n. All the languages add up to a decent amount of disk space. But, for a pre-built version it's tough to pare out languages. May be more relevant as an option to someone building a binary for their own use.

Other packages/libraries? Qt takes up a lot of space, but I don't know if anything can be left out of that package.

I just did a build of 0.20-fixes, without themes or plugins as a test. The build command was: " -svnbranch release-0-20-fixes -pluginskip -themeskip", and the resulting weighed in at 50MB. Still not exactly light.. but less than half that of the full version. A bzip2'd tar file of that app compressed to 17MB.

1080p Playback?

There have been several reports of playback problems at very high display resolutions like 1080p. Maybe a warning about this, or at least some definitive information, would be useful. I only use 720p, and that works great.. Anyone else have info on 1080p playback?

(tji) I recently did some testing on this issue, after getting access to a new iMac with 1920x1200 resolution. I did see the problem on 1080i video. It's related to the scaling of 1080i content, where QuickTime seems to use software processing rather than the normal hardware scaling. More info here:

(MikePalmer) Why does the latest 0.21-fixes packages from "The" and "" have very choppy 1080p playback on a 2ghz Core 2 Duo MacBook and 2ghz Core 2 Dueo iMac with 10.5 but vanvalkinburgh's package works fine on both of them?

Should this be listed while the others are not? Is macvana or Sniderpad both building with libraries from old versions of OS X or is vanvalkinburg applying special patches? Something is different. crapping out when trying to compile qt 3.3.6

Anyone else have this problem? I'm having crap out on me when it tries to compile QT 3.3.6

kernel/qapplication_mac.cpp:223: error: syntax error before `void'
kernel/qapplication_mac.cpp:228: error: `dw' was not declared in this scope
kernel/qapplication_mac.cpp:228: error: `re' was not declared in this scope
kernel/qapplication_mac.cpp:228: warning: ISO C++ forbids declaration of sendEvent' with no type
kernel/qapplication_mac.cpp:228: error: `int QApplication::sendEvent' is not a
static member of `class QApplication'
kernel/qapplication_mac.cpp:228: warning: initializer list being treated as
compound expression

... etc ...
kernel/qapplication_mac.cpp:535: warning: `void qt_mac_event_release(QWidget*,
  OpaqueEventRef*&)' defined but not used
{standard input}:617:Ignoring attempt to re-define symbol.
make[1]: *** [.obj/release-shared-mt/qapplication_mac.o] Error 1
make: *** [sub-src] Error 2
[osx-pkg] Failed system call: " /usr/bin/make sub-src qmake-install moc-install " with error code 2
Died at ./ line 726.

Kind of annoying. I know I can download the nightly svn builds from sniperpad, but I would like to be able to build it myself.

Info for those who are having problems with QT

PLEASE add some info regarding this to the main article - I don't know enough about it to edit it myself. VoltageX 12:21, 13 July 2007 (UTC)

"Easy" guide?

First let me preface my comment by saying that vi is great (as is emacs, let's just not go there), but telling the poor innocent Mac users (not all of us are that innocent, but there are some, and surely they deserve their delicious open source DVRs also) that you're giving them a "cut and paste" guide and then telling them to use an editor where even the backspace and arrow keys won't necessarily work how they're expecting? Just mean. Surely the plain vanilla gui text editor can be invoked via command line? Anyone who would rather use vi will surely have an easier time substituting that than someone who has never even heard of vi will have bringing up something they can use.