I have been using MythTV for several years at home. My family loves the DVR; it's easy-to-use, mostly bug-free, and has allowed us to enjoy television at our leisure rather than at the broadcaster's schedule.
In late 2011, I upgraded from a rather long-in-the-tooth but reliable Mythbuntu 10.04 LTS to Mythbuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot. The transition was far from seamless. I'd been using the fglrx driver for my on-board ATI card, and found that although I could use it, I had better (and more stable) results using a software-only rendering path to my 720P 50" Plasma TV. I also found that, by default, HDMI audio is disabled in Oneiric, resulting in no-sound, fast-moving video. The quick fix to this was:
* vi /etc/default/grub
* Change this line:
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash radeon.audio=1"
And all was well.
The cool part about this upgrade was that I got a lot of improvements "for free".
The one downside of my upgrade, though, was that transcoding stopped working correctly for me. I had hobbled together a set of scripts that mostly worked well for permanently archiving content we really enjoyed. Some of it was automatic, but most of it was manual. I like to verify that commercial skips are properly placed before permanently deleting them in an archival file!
So I decided to put together a new transcoding toolchain. While the myth stuff is excellent for re-transcoding almost-lossless copies of your videos with commercials removed, it doesn't save you much space without a really giant reduction in quality, and remains MPEG2 with all the size limitations that implies. Ultimately what I want is a great 720P x.264 copy of my videos tucked away on one of my ZFS archival drives. I want to automatically detect whether the video is formatted widescreen or 4:3, and crop away the excess if it's 4:3. And if I'm not 100% certain it's 4:3, just transcode widescreen and we'll live with the black bars being baked into the video.
Quite a job! And it starts with Handbrake not being available for Ubuntu Oneiric Ocelot yet. I attempted to add the PPA like usual, and received a few errors.
$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:stebbins/handbrake-releases $ sudo apt-get update .... Err http://ppa.launchpad.net oneiric/main Sources 404 Not Found Err http://ppa.launchpad.net oneiric/main amd64 Packages 404 Not Found Err http://ppa.launchpad.net oneiric/main i386 Packages 404 Not Found .... W: Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/stebbins/handbrake-releases/ubuntu/dists/oneiri... 404 Not Found W: Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/stebbins/handbrake-releases/ubuntu/dists/oneiri... 404 Not Found W: Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/stebbins/handbrake-releases/ubuntu/dists/oneiri... 404 Not Found E: Some index files failed to download. They have been ignored, or old ones used instead.
Dang. Looks as if I get to build it!
Will provide more details on that process at a later date. I tried building it, but kept getting this error that has me stumped:
ass_shaper.h:24:29: fatal error: fribidi/fribidi.h: No such file or directory
Funny error, but a show-stopper at present! Guess I'll stick with the old built-in Myth transcode stuff for a bit until I can figure this out.