Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 30th Oct 2009 12:07 UTC
Linux I'm in a bit of a pickle here. I have an Atom 330-based tiny computer which I use as my HTPC. It performed its job fine running Windows 7 and Boxee, and over the past few months, it ran Mac OS X Leopard with Plex. Now, however, I want to try Linux as an HTPC operating system, but I kind of ran into a roadblock there with Ubuntu 9.10 - so the question is: what is a good HTPC Linux distribution?
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Linux media center
by aunzim on Fri 30th Oct 2009 12:20 UTC
aunzim
Member since:
2008-07-25

http://linuxmce.com/

Is also a good domotic center

A live CD

http://geexbox.org/en/index.html

Reply Score: 1

Comment by sanone
by sanone on Fri 30th Oct 2009 12:34 UTC
sanone
Member since:
2009-10-30

XBMC is the base of boxee and comes with it's own version of ubuntu and even a live distro. Check it out at http://www.xbmc.org/

There is also a MythTV version of Ubuntu dubbed Mythbuntu which can be found here: http://www.mythbuntu.org/

I really like xbmc (still use it on my xbox) so I recommend that one. It has all the features you requested (including no TV recording ;) ).

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by sanone
by righard on Fri 30th Oct 2009 12:48 UTC in reply to "Comment by sanone"
righard Member since:
2007-12-26

He really did say anything Ubuntu based was out of the question.

I myself have set up I nice HTPC with Arch Linux http://www.archlinux.org/ though it might be more work to set it up then Ubuntu or other more graphical based distrobuttions.

For read/write support with ntfs partitions check out ntfs-3g http://www.ntfs-3g.org/ (If your going for Arch Linux; it's available in there repositories.)

Boxee is available in Arch'es AUR http://aur.archlinux.org/packages.php?ID=24206

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by sanone
by bralkein on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:55 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by sanone"
bralkein Member since:
2006-12-20

I'm planning on building an Arch Linux based media centre too. I think that Arch is perfect for these types of job (though I am a committed Arch fan, full disclosure etc.) since you can easily custom-build a lightweight, up-to-date system from scratch but I probably would hesitate to recommend it to someone who isn't very familiar with Linux in general. You will be expected to use the command line, edit text files and all that stuff.

Reply Score: 1

In a similar place
by jabbotts on Fri 30th Oct 2009 12:53 UTC
jabbotts
Member since:
2007-09-06

I'm on a similar look for a good media center setup. Mythbuntu or Knopmyth would be my first guesses. Mandriva would probably cover your hardware (2008.1 or the netbook build maybe?) abut it's Myth install in 2008.1 was less polished. Debian Stable would have been my first pick to try. Ubuntu 9.10 is based on Debian's testing brand I believe. Lenny wouldn't give you the latest version numbers but may give you a stable system with the bits your looking for. The few odd drivers and codecs where dead simple to setup.

Reply Score: 3

RE: In a similar place
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 30th Oct 2009 12:54 UTC in reply to "In a similar place"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I'm actually leaning towards Mandriva too. I'm going to figure out if it makes it easy to install Boxee and Chrome.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: In a similar place
by spiderman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 13:23 UTC in reply to "RE: In a similar place"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

Yes, install Mandriva, then VirtualBox and install Ubuntu 9.10 in VirtualBox and then install Boxee. Then run Boxee in Ubuntu in VirtualBox in Mandriva.
The Ubuntu problem should not exist in VirtualBox and you can still have a familiar distro with everything you like.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: In a similar place - interesting
by jabbotts on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:28 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: In a similar place"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Seems like a little over kill of Boxee runs natively under Mandriva though. I'm also waiting for two developments in Virtualbox:

- True "bridged" network devices without scripting tunnel devices by hand. Bridged in addition to NAT networking should have been in the first draft on that one.

- Start at boot support for VMs. I run a groupware server VM guest under my workstation. I need that VM to autoboot when the host system reboots. This has to be possible without scripting and juggling between account priviledge.

Those are not impossible issues; they just keep me from being able to replace VMware with Virtualbox for my needs.

VMware Server on Debian Lenny has it's own issues related to the SSL enabled web interface. I'm able to use it an access my older VMs through the http:// interface but no https:// and the related service hangs shutdown and restart (system or VMware services).

Now, VMware Server under Mandriva never gave me issue. Should such a complicated setup be needed, VMware should play nice with your Mandriva and autostart a bridged VM for Ubuntu or one's preferred choice.

Reply Score: 2

kjmph Member since:
2009-07-17


- True "bridged" network devices without scripting tunnel devices by hand. Bridged in addition to NAT networking should have been in the first draft on that one.


Hi, I haven't touched that in ages with VirtualBox. It just works in recent releases. I can't comment about your other problem, but bridged mode is just a down arrow away!

Reply Score: 1

phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

"
- True "bridged" network devices without scripting tunnel devices by hand. Bridged in addition to NAT networking should have been in the first draft on that one.


Hi, I haven't touched that in ages with VirtualBox. It just works in recent releases. I can't comment about your other problem, but bridged mode is just a down arrow away!
"

It's called Host Networking, which might trip people up. But it's actually bridged, using the virtualbox network filter driver in the host, as opposed to a separate bridge interface.

Reply Score: 2

renatoriolino Member since:
2009-11-04

- True "bridged" network devices without scripting tunnel devices by hand. Bridged in addition to NAT networking should have been in the first draft on that one.

- Start at boot support for VMs. I run a groupware server VM guest under my workstation. I need that VM to autoboot when the host system reboots. This has to be possible without scripting and juggling between account priviledge.


Virtual Box already does both. I have 4 VMs starting on boot on a Ubuntu Server running Virtual Box. All of them connected with bridge networking (without scripts).

Reply Score: 1

Comment by nitroflow
by nitroflow on Fri 30th Oct 2009 12:54 UTC
nitroflow
Member since:
2009-10-30

Try mandriva. The latest version 2010.0 is about to be released that way you could also review it and if you try it don't forget to add the plf repository for all the legally encumbered stuff.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by nitroflow - easyurpmi
by jabbotts on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:29 UTC in reply to "Comment by nitroflow"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Search "easyurpmi" and you should end up at the right place to add network and PLF repositories.

Reply Score: 3

Ubuntu 9.10
by spiderman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 13:17 UTC
spiderman
Member since:
2008-10-23

Obviously, what you want is Ubuntu 9.04, or Ubuntu 8.04 since that is what you are familiar with.
Or, you could just try to install Ubuntu 9.10 in text mode.
Otherwise, you should try any of the big distros and choose what you like best. Or, if you really don't know what would be good for you, try this distro chooser:
http://www.zegeniestudios.net/ldc/index.php

Anyway, you should open a bug in launchpad or whatever bug tracking system Ubuntu uses.

Edited 2009-10-30 13:17 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Sabayon linux
by Darkness on Fri 30th Oct 2009 13:25 UTC
Darkness
Member since:
2005-08-27

Sabayon linux might be something to look into.
http://www.sabayonlinux.org/

It is based on Gentoo but provides also binary packages instead of compiling everything from source.
So no debian package management, but portage is similar.

Sabayon comes with XBMC. I think you could even choose to have it boot directly into XBMC during the installation. At least with the previous version.

Artwork is also very polished.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Sabayon linux
by mechanyx on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:15 UTC in reply to "Sabayon linux"
mechanyx Member since:
2007-04-05

I second Sabayon. It implements a true BSD style ports tree where you have both pkgsrc and pkgadd except pkgsrc is Gentoo's emerge and pkgadd is equo. It's my first choice for any job.

Reply Score: 2

64bit
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 30th Oct 2009 13:37 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

There is one other thing I hadn't considered: I could try the 64bit variant of Ubuntu (yes, I really prefer a Debian-based system over others. Sue me ;) ). The Atom 330 is 64bit, but I never bothered because it doesn't accept more than 2GB of RAM anyway.

Keep on suggesting though, as this might not work.

Reply Score: 1

RE: 64bit
by spiderman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 13:59 UTC in reply to "64bit"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

Have you tried the alternate text installer? If not, really you should. It's not the same kernel as the liveCD one. Moreover, that the installer is crashing does not mean the system will crash afterward. Again, it's not the same kernel.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: 64bit
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:44 UTC in reply to "RE: 64bit"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I create my USB boot things with unetbootin, but that one doesn't include the text installer option. On top of that, people are reporting the same problems with running systems - it's not just the live CD kernel that fcuks up. It's all a bit of an epic fail.

I'm kind of bummed. 64bit didn't work either.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: 64bit
by kragil on Fri 30th Oct 2009 16:55 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: 64bit"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

Err, the Atom is a low end-chip. So no AMD64.
That is market segmentation for you.

Edit:Sorry, I was wrong. Only the Z and N don't have 64bit.
But with less than 4GB 64bit is toally pointless. You waste a lot of CPU cache for nothing. The system will be way slower.

Edited 2009-10-30 16:59 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: 64bit
by sbergman27 on Fri 30th Oct 2009 17:14 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: 64bit"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Edit:Sorry, I was wrong. Only the Z and N don't have 64bit.
But with less than 4GB 64bit is toally pointless. You waste a lot of CPU cache for nothing. The system will be way slower.

Strictly speaking, don't the kernel tradeoffs begin above around 800MB? Bounce buffers and such? And don't forget all the extra registers that come with X86_64.

Personally, I think that 64 bit kernel with 32 bit user space, with individual 64 bit apps deployed strategically, is really optimum for many situations. The kernel has all the memory management advantages of 64 bit. But without the memory hit of 64 bit user space pointers, except where 64 bit can really help. As it *which* 64 bit apps to strategically deploy, if any... I'm not certain. And, of course, it depends upon the exact situation.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: 64bit
by kragil on Fri 30th Oct 2009 18:03 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: 64bit"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

Yes, you are right. 64bit kernel and 32 bit apps would be optimal in most cases.
AFAIK modern CPUs get their speed from running stuff in cpu cache and 64bit pointers etc take way more cache memory.

I don't know that much about CPU design, but I think the current design of X86 and AMD64 has a lot of limitations because of backwards compatibility.
Maybe when FOSS gets more popular AMD or Intel will introduce an "X86 unleashed" mode where you have can 16 64bit registers and 32 bit pointers and GCC and go wild with its optimizations. Might be just a brainfart, though.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: 64bit
by sbergman27 on Fri 30th Oct 2009 19:07 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: 64bit"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

I don't know that much about CPU design, but I think the current design of X86 and AMD64 has a lot of limitations because of backwards compatibility.

My impression is that the main problem with x86 was its register-starved nature, and lack of 64 bit instructions. Both fixed by X86_64. The rest of the complaints about x86 seem pretty ivory tower. On a computing power per dollar basis, X86_64 looks to be sweeping pretty much all the competition either into the dirt bin, or into little niches in the corners.

Would some other instruction set be a little better in some way? Does it matter?

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: 64bit
by PlatformAgnostic on Fri 30th Oct 2009 21:22 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: 64bit"
PlatformAgnostic Member since:
2006-01-02

You don't need any changes to the processor to do this. As I understand it, a few different JVMs can operate in this mode (32-bit pointers stored in memory, plus some base offset). FWIW, Itanium actually has special instructions to make 32-bit pointer size systems fast, so Intel has clearly thought about the strategy.

Reply Score: 2

RE: 64bit
by baron on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:53 UTC in reply to "64bit"
baron Member since:
2009-10-30

Definitively give 64-bit a shot. I have an Intel board with the same chipset for a media backend, and it runs ubuntu-server-amd64 without a hitch.

You could also give the netinstall (mini.iso) a shot.

Finally, try unplugging the sound card during install. It should not make a difference, but there is a chance that that card's module is causing your problems.

Another thing to consider: If you are using your HTPC as a mythtv backend, you may want to stick to 9.04. Karmic has updated the mythtv packages to 0.22, and they are not backwards compatible.


Edit: Posted before reading the RE[2]: 64bit. Still, consider unplugging the sound card.

Also, do you have a chance of checking the error logs? It would help narrow down the issue.

Finally, I know you said it ran ok on Win7, but have you run memtest?

Edited 2009-10-30 14:58 UTC

Reply Score: 1

If you like Debian based systems ...
by dindin on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:13 UTC
dindin
Member since:
2006-03-29

then why not try Debian? Not sure if you have tried it or not or if it has the same problems that Ubuntu does.

PS: I am a FreeBSD/Debian user.

Reply Score: 2

Alt Install and Slackware
by Zujin87 on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:13 UTC
Zujin87
Member since:
2009-10-30

I would try the Alternate install first for Ubuntu. My old P4 refused to install Ubuntu without it. I'm actually running Xubuntu with XBMC installed on that system now.

I'm currently running XBMC on Slack 13(x86) and it runs very nicely. I plugged in my wifes Dell MC remote and it worked instantly. Yes, it has more setup time but also has less overhead out of the box. I installed XBMC using a Slackbuild but there might be a pre-built package out there. No idea how it would run on a nettop.

Edited 2009-10-30 14:14 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 30th Oct 2009 14:54 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

I'm quite confident that the problems I'm having stem from the Intel integrated video chip (GMA950 in my case). On the Ubuntuforums, people with integrated Intel chips are reporting problems with random freezes and crashes, both during normal use and during installation.

My god what an epic, epic fail. Intel's integrated video chips are ridiculously popular. It probably has something to do with the architecture switch in the Intel video driver.

Big bummer.

Edited 2009-10-30 15:00 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by moondevil on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:14 UTC in reply to "Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

And the main reason why I am mostly on Windows nowadays on the desktop and leave Linux on the server room.

I would gladly be on MacOS X, if they weren't so expensive in Europe.

I am a Linux user since the kernel 1.0.9 days, and nowadays have more interesting things to do with my life that spending endless hours with such configuration issues, or broken releases. My desktop should just work.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by spiderman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

If you want a desktop to just work, you should only use stable software, man.
People use testing software, which are advertized as testing software: for tests, which means: "please help us test this software, which probably is buggy" and then they complain that it does not work!
Man, if Windows development was open and they had a portal where you could download all their testing stuff, you would probably be crying!
People complain and they don't even use the bug tracking system.
Well, maybe linux is not for you. It's open and documented but if you can't read, it won't help you.

Reply Score: 4

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

People use testing software, which are advertized as testing software: for tests, which means: "please help us test this software, which probably is buggy" and then they complain that it does not work!


Since when is Ubuntu 9.10 testing software? It's a full-on release, last time I checked.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by spiderman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:37 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

It's based on Debian testing.
Canonical releases LTS versions, which are more stable. Other versions are pretty bleeding edge. When Dell chooses Ubuntu for their netbook, they pick a LTS version, because other versions are not as stable and supported by Canonical.
If you want stable software, use Debian stable, or Ubuntu 8.04 LTS.
If you want to try new things and be on the bleeding edge, use Ubuntu 9.10, but don't complain when there are bugs, post them on launchpad instead.

It's the same when you use Fedora instead of Red Hat.

Edited 2009-10-30 15:40 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

If you want to try new things and be on the bleeding edge, use Ubuntu 9.10, but don't complain when there are bugs, post them on launchpad instead.


A release is a release. There is no testing warning or whatever on Ubuntu's site. Why are you defending such an epic fail on Ubuntu's end? I mean come on - Intel video chips causing freezes all over the place?

That's unacceptable.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by spiderman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:45 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23


A release is a release. There is no testing warning or whatever on Ubuntu's site. Why are you defending such an epic fail on Ubuntu's end? I mean come on - Intel video chips causing freezes all over the place?

That's unacceptable.

I'm not defending Ubuntu in any way. Ubuntu is based on Debian testing.
Look, if you use Fedora, you know it's a bleeding edge distro and it's a testing ground for new things.
It's your choice to use it, nobody put a gun over your head. There are bugs, yes and we all know it.
Now if you don't like unstable software, use Red Hat and pay for support, or use CentOS, or Debian stable.
There are literally more than 500 distros to choose from. YOU make the choice, according to what YOU want. Now if you want stability, DON'T USE BLEEDING EDGE DISTROS!!! Slackware, Red Hat, Debian (stable), etc... are made just for you! use that and stop whining.
If you still use bleeding edge distro, don't go around saying stupid things like 'linux is buggy', 'Windows is stable', etc... you just chose to use testing software.

Edited 2009-10-30 15:55 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

If you still use bleeding edge distro, don't go around saying stupid things like 'linux is buggy', 'Windows is stable', etc... you just chose to use testing software.


I did not say such a thing. All I said was that if the most popular Linux distribution has major problems for the second release in a row with Intel video chips, then that's an EPIC FAIL. Bleeding edge blah blah or no, that's just totally unacceptable.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by phoenix on Fri 30th Oct 2009 20:47 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

I'm not defending Ubuntu in any way. Ubuntu is based on Debian testing.


No, it's based on Debian Sid (debian unstable). They rebase their packages on Debian Sid every 6 months, and then spend a couple weeks re-integrating everything, then spend a couple week testing, and then release it. It's not that great of a release process, IMO.

Reply Score: 4

RE[6]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by twitterfire on Fri 30th Oct 2009 16:38 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
twitterfire Member since:
2008-09-11


That's unacceptable.


Just read what linux "fanboys" just use to say: maybe linux is not for you:

http://linux.oneandoneis2.org/LNW.htm

Reply Score: 0

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I had Debian 6 Testing on my machine for a few weeks. Some of the additional software was great (OpenVAS) and I actually liked KDE4 now that it's had a few point releases since. Ultimately, I ended up dropping the notebook back to Debian 5 Stable though. KDE4 and the additional apps did not justify some of the breakage I was getting with updates. That's not a complaint about Debian, I knowingly ran a testing status distribution. I've since obtained OpenVAS through backports and KDE3 runs lighter on the system so I can wait for Debian 6 to go stable or at least much closer to stable release.

I think the point the previous poster is trying to make is this same thing; when you run a testing distro you have to accept that your using the beta of the next release. When you run an RC or Beta Windows release, you have to accept that it's in development and may break or lack features.

This should not excuse Canonical for so many having issues with such a generic chipset and GPU. It does indicate a potential cause and justify reverting back to an LTS, trying the parent distro Debian or another distro entirely.

(I have to admit I'm a fork snob also; why use a forked distro if the parent distro provides all the same functions and/or more.)

Bottom line; popularity has never indicated the quality of software. Canonical is popular but there are other distros more applicable to given tasks.

Reply Score: 4

RE[6]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by Johnny on Sat 31st Oct 2009 02:16 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
Johnny Member since:
2009-08-15

Thom, I agree. That is an epic fail. I'm very surprised that Ubuntu didn't catch that bug during the alpha-beta-rc cycle. As you pointed out, it's not like Intel's integrated chipset is some kind of obscure graphics chipset. How did they miss that bug?

--Johnny

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by gustl on Mon 2nd Nov 2009 20:05 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
gustl Member since:
2006-01-19

How they missed this bug?

Simple: Time based releases!

If you have a release date, you are always going to have a huge number of bugs, that is simply unavoidable.

The last Debian STABLE (lenny) was released, when the number of release critical bugs was just less than 100. Now imagine how many more bugs a distro must necessarily ship with, if debian sid is taken as a base and 6 Months of bugfixing goes into the system.

You might have hardware which works like a breeze, then it's a very fine system. If you don't have this hardware, you are out of luck.

In this case it seems like buggy Intel drivers are a major cause of pain.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by Zifre on Fri 30th Oct 2009 21:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

Am I the only one who has never had any major problems with Ubuntu on the desktop? Windows gives me headaches all the time. Various apps will crash the system, I get constantly high CPU usage that overheats my laptop, the UI seems very inconsistent (once you have apps from all over the place), and I find it to be very unintuitive compared to Ubuntu. A Mac would be nice, but they're ridiculously expensive.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by sbergman27 on Fri 30th Oct 2009 21:40 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Windows gives me headaches all the time. Various apps will crash the system, I get constantly high CPU usage that overheats my laptop...
...A Mac would be nice, but they're ridiculously expensive.

And would burn your balls off on its way to your wallet, too.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by spiderman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:17 UTC in reply to "Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

Did you try the vesa driver then?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by phoenix on Fri 30th Oct 2009 20:44 UTC in reply to "Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

I'm quite confident that the problems I'm having stem from the Intel integrated video chip (GMA950 in my case). On the Ubuntuforums, people with integrated Intel chips are reporting problems with random freezes and crashes, both during normal use and during installation.

My god what an epic, epic fail. Intel's integrated video chips are ridiculously popular. It probably has something to do with the architecture switch in the Intel video driver.


I'm waiting for the price of nVidia ION systems to come down a bit, and then building my HTPC. So far, the Acer Revo looks just about perfect.

* Dual-core Atom 330 CPU @ 1.6 GHz
* 2 GB RAM
* 160 GB HD
* nVidia 9400M graphics onboard
* HD sound onboard
* VGA and HDMI output
* several USB 2.0 ports
* gigabit NIC onboard
* wireless N chipset on board

Comes with a VESA mount, so it can be mounted on the back of monitor/flatscreen. ;) Now to find one for less than $400 CDN.

All the reviews online show this setup (dual-core atom + nvidia 9400) capable of doing 1080p without hiccups, and only around 30% CPU usage.

Reply Score: 2

ClockEndGooner
Member since:
2009-03-11

Greetings:

I can understand not wanting to run the latest Ubuntu or any of its derivatives due to the system lockup during the installation process, but looking at the postings, I'm puzzled why there's more discussion on the OS than on the media center application. Do we have "form follows function" bass ackwards? {:-)

Taking a different approach, have you considered MythTV? The full and detailed rich FAQ is at http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Frequently_Asked_Questions#Operating_Sys...

From the FAQ, the following distros are supported:

1. Fedora. Jarod Wilson has written what is almost certainly the best guide to getting MythTV up and running and he's done it based on Fedora. Find out more here.

2. KnoppMyth. This is a version of Knoppix bundled with all of the stuff needed to get Myth up and running.

3. MythDora. This is a custom based version of Fedora that will install MythTV for you. Everything that you need is right on the disk along with some extras.

4. SuSE Offers an easy to use straight forward interface.

5. Ubuntu The latest releases of Ubuntu feature full support for MythTV. Its ease of installation and use has made it very popular among the LINUX desktop crowd.

6. Mythbuntu A modified version of Ubuntu comes with MythTV pre-packaged.

Also, focusing on the distro more than the application is discussed on the FAQ as well:

"This is one of the most hotly disputed topics on #mythtv-users (other than politics or religion). All Linux distributions that are capable of installing or compiling all of the prerequisites are usable. Asking for advice in choosing a distro is ill-advised as many of us have strong opinions based on our usage requirements, and these requirements will likely not match yours. However, Fedora and Debian are some of the most used, and easiest to work with."

As for feature set, take a look at http://www.mythtv.org/detail/mythtv. It supports a number of plug-ins and themes. As for TV tuner reception and supported signals, the FAQ has this covered as well:

The Netherlands (Europe)

In the netherlands all alternatives work using a MythTV system. Following the tested setups.

* DVB-S = yes (Tested with CanalDigital)
* DVB-C = yes (Tested with Ziggo)
* DVB-T = yes (Tested with KPN digitenne)
* analogue = yes (Tested with Ziggo)

Great question and discussion starter Thom. Can we expect a write-up or comparison when you're done?

Best Regards.

Reply Score: 3

Forget Ubuntu for HTPC
by achernow on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:32 UTC
achernow
Member since:
2009-07-21

I had a spare machine that I tried to run Mythbuntu on. It failed massively. In fact, the only distro I could get to work was MythDora.

But...that machine has been replaced by a Mac + Plex.

-Adam

Reply Score: 1

Mythbuntu HTPC
by hellerite on Fri 30th Oct 2009 15:57 UTC
hellerite
Member since:
2009-10-30

xxxxxx
description: Desktop Computer
width: 32 bits
capabilities: smbios-2.4 dmi-2.4 smp-1.4 smp
configuration: boot=normal chassis=desktop cpus=1
*-core
description: Motherboard
product: D945GCLF2
vendor: Intel Corporation
physical id: 0
version: AAE46416-101
slot: Base Board Chassis Location
*-cpu
description: CPU
product: Intel(R) Atom(TM) CPU 330 @ 1.60GHz

I have been using this board with Mythbuntu without any problems since 8.04. 9.10 has been the best one yet since I did not need to install xorg ~edgers ppa packages for the Super Video output to work. I used Mythbuntu 9.10 beta CD to install the system and have been upgrading ever since.

Reply Score: 1

DVB, anyone?
by OSNevvs on Fri 30th Oct 2009 17:02 UTC
OSNevvs
Member since:
2009-08-20

Why not mentioning DVB when discussing HTPC? It's of utmost importance IMO...DVB-T, DVB-C, DVB-S, etc...It's nice to watch TV while working on the computer at the same time, sometimes. I have a hard time finding a nice DVB player in Linux with record scheduler...

Reply Score: 1

v Who cares?
by tyrione on Fri 30th Oct 2009 17:20 UTC
RE: Who cares?
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 30th Oct 2009 17:48 UTC in reply to "Who cares?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

what you did illegally with a Hackintosh version of OS X?


Sue me.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Who cares? - illegal?
by jabbotts on Fri 30th Oct 2009 18:18 UTC in reply to "Who cares?"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

From my following the recent discussions; isn't the EULA unlawful in Netherlands indicating that his building a hackintosh was fully within local laws? Since a post sale restriction does not apply, copyright law allows for the legally purchased content to be installed provided it's not installed in two or more places?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Who cares?
by djitanium on Fri 30th Oct 2009 19:51 UTC in reply to "Who cares?"
djitanium Member since:
2009-09-25

Agreed. But then again, OSNews isn't really famous for a professional image. The site is rife with dilettantism and arguing over the smallest trifles. Join us next week when someone needs advice on how to trick OS/2 into installing on a PowerMac G3 they found on the piss-stained floor of the boiler room at their small town high-school using floppies. Laugh as the entire OSNews gang practically murders each other when six different people come up with six different ways of accomplishing the same pointless/impossible task!

Reply Score: 0

RE: Hackintoshes make Maclots cry (film at 11)
by BallmerKnowsBest on Fri 30th Oct 2009 19:59 UTC in reply to "Who cares?"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

You just shot all your professional status to hell by admitting to fraud.

You sheepishly ask for help by coyly admitting you're ``in a pickle'' and are asking for free advise to accomplish legally with Linux what you did illegally with a Hackintosh version of OS X?

Seriously?

Completely unprofessional.


Since it obviously upsets you, I'm going to go install OS X on a non-Apple PC right now - just for spite.

Hahaha!
- BallmerKnowsBest

Reply Score: 3

RE: Who cares?
by Morgan on Fri 30th Oct 2009 23:53 UTC in reply to "Who cares?"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

What law did he break? An EULA is not criminally enforceable, else half the computer-using people on earth would be rotting in jail. He didn't violate the DMCA (not that it matters in his country anyway) and he certainly didn't steal anything. If you'd read his article on the Hackintosh process he used, you'd know that. He used a Leopard retail disc, a boot-132 bootloader (open source under Apple's own license) and he even labeled the computer with an apple--tongue in cheek maybe, but to the letter of the EULA.

So, as a law enforcement employee for the past ten years, I ask you: What law did he break? My coworkers certainly wouldn't arrest him for installing legally purchased software on a legally purchased computer with no circumvention of copyrighted content. In fact, they'd likely arrest YOU for false report of a crime, which is illegal.

Reply Score: 5

mediaportal
by gfx1 on Fri 30th Oct 2009 17:51 UTC
gfx1
Member since:
2006-01-20

I run Vista with mediaportal. The trick with htpc's is not to upgrade it when it (finally) works.

Reply Score: 1

Sorry to here about atom 330
by fasted on Fri 30th Oct 2009 17:51 UTC
fasted
Member since:
2006-11-09

Mostly because I was going to get a net top 330 + ion set. I'm wondering if this is the combo of atom 330 + 950 or atom 330 + ion as well. I have mini 110 atom n270 + 950, and have had no problems with 9.10 at all. Hope you find a solution. I have tried open suse 11.2 with no success, slooooow. Have tried pclinuxos and it runs good. elive worked nice, windows 7 rc worked ok, no mic. though. Try any of the bsd's?

Reply Score: 1

Simple Solution
by HeLfReZ on Fri 30th Oct 2009 18:39 UTC
HeLfReZ
Member since:
2005-08-12

Archlinux 32bit core
AUR: XBMC (or Boxxee)
AUR: Mediatomb = DLNA/UPnP Streaming + Transcoding support for other network devices(will show up in windows media player recent versions, also on XBox 360 and PS3, etc)

Reply Score: 2

Intel GMA950 graphics chip
by shawnifoley on Fri 30th Oct 2009 19:29 UTC
shawnifoley
Member since:
2006-03-16

Why bother with the Intel GMA950 graphics chip? I would suggest sticking with windows because of that. If it was on ion based system then linux would be the ticket

Reply Score: 1

Comment by atari05
by atari05 on Fri 30th Oct 2009 21:43 UTC
atari05
Member since:
2006-06-05

Silly but did you try Ubuntu NBR? Since ....your really running a a netbook without its head ;) .

If not that.....give slax a try?

Reply Score: 1

For Goodness Sake
by testman on Fri 30th Oct 2009 23:45 UTC
testman
Member since:
2007-10-15

Thom asks a simple question, A SIMPLE BLOODY QUESTION about how to set up an HTPC. Surprise surprise, the overwhelming response is negative.

The zealots really are easy to hate.

Reply Score: 2

Debian runs fine
by werterr on Sat 31st Oct 2009 02:07 UTC
werterr
Member since:
2006-10-03

Debian runs fine on my ATOM 330 though I do have the ION Nvidia chipset running on it so no Intel gfx chip.

Using XBMC for HPTC.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Debian runs fine
by sbergman27 on Sat 31st Oct 2009 02:16 UTC in reply to "Debian runs fine"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Debian runs fine on my ATOM 330 though I do have the ION Nvidia chipset running on it so no Intel gfx chip.

Really? I've always wanted to try Debian. But I could never get it to install on anything.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Debian runs fine
by RawMustard on Sat 31st Oct 2009 05:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Debian runs fine"
RawMustard Member since:
2005-10-10

Installs on whatever I throw it at here. But then I don't use the graphical installer, maybe that makes a difference?

Reply Score: 3