[mythtv-users] Need advice on customizing my UI

Kevin Kuphal kuphal at dls.net
Sun May 14 17:32:36 EDT 2006

Azmat wrote:
> I've been successfully using MythTV for about 8 months now and I
> decided that it was time to delve into its inner-workings so my
> Myth-box can be all that it can be.  I built my first system from RPMs
> and it works great.  To leave that system undisturbed, I decided to
> install 0.19 on a second "sandbox" system so I can play as much as I
> want.  I wanted to start out small by customizing the layout of my
> frontend: rearranging menu hierarchy, modifying buttons, and possibly
> adding buttons that link in to other programs.
> I hit a snare early on that has me a bit confused.  I understand that
> the files that describe the UI are XML and are found in
> /usr/local/share/mythtv, however I'm confused as to the mapping of
> these files to what I'm currently seeing in Myth.  For instance, in
> 0.19 on the main menu, my choices are:
> Watch Recordings
> Upcoming Recordings
> Schedule Recordings
> Recording Priorities
> System Status
> Utilities/Setup
> However, according to mainmenu.xml, it seems the fields are:
> Watch TV
> Media Library
> Manage Recordings
> Information Center
> Optical Disks
> Utilities
> Why is there a mismatch?  I feel like I'm missing something here.  
You are not using mainmenu.xml, you are using the PVR menu theme which 
resides in the PVR subdirectory.

> I
> also understand that the UI is also dictated by the theme XML files
> located in /usr/local/share/mythtv/themes/<theme>.  I notice a ui.xml
> and a theme.xml file, however its not clear to me how to use these
> files to affect menu layout.
They don't, they handle the drawing of the other screens like watch 
recordings, etc.
> My main questions are:
> 1. Why is there an apparent disconnect between the fields given in the
> XML files and those shown in the actual menus?
> 2. What areas are each set of XML files responsible for?  Do the files
> in share/mythtv control layout and those in
> share/mythtv/themes/<theme> control icons, colors, positioning, etc.?
> 3. Is there a walk-through or tutorial that explains the above two
> questions that I'm unaware of and possibly describes some of the
> syntax used in these files (i.e. MENU, EXEC, JUMP commands, etc.)
Check the links at the bottom of this page:

For theme and menu development.  They're probably the best resource 
outside the code.


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