[mythtv-users] Can you share the recordings?

Rod Smith mythtv at rodsbooks.com
Tue Feb 27 20:06:31 UTC 2007

On Tuesday 27 February 2007 14:29, James Talvy wrote:
> I am new to MythTV and I apologize if this is answered in a FAQ somewhere.
> What I would like to do is create a MythTV setup so that after I record
> my TV shows I can share the recordings over my local area network and
> transfer them to a portable video device.... such as an iPod or an
> Archos type device.
> Anyone know if this is easily doable?

It's possible. Whether it's "easy" depends on precisely what you want to do 
and your level of experience and comfort with command-line tools. You mention 
two specific scenarios (which might both relate to the second one; your 
precise intentions aren't clear):

1) Sharing over a LAN -- MythTV is a network-enabled tool, so you can set up a
   single recording computer (the "backend") and watch the content it records
   on multiple viewing systems (the "frontends"). A single computer can
   function as both backend and frontend, and you can also have multiple
   backends if that's convenient or necessary. If you want to share recordings
   over a network to, in part, let you watch shows on TVs in multiple rooms,
   you could set up MythTV frontends in each room with a TV and you'd be set.
   MythTV isn't as easy to configure as, say, a TiVo, but once you've got it
   set up it wouldn't take a genius to use the interface at any of the
   frontends. If you want to copy over a LAN simply to get the files to a
   system to which you connect your iPod, you wouldn't need a separate MythTV
   frontend; you'd use a file transfer protocol (FTP, SMB, NFS, SSH, or
   whatever else is convenient) to transfer the files. This wouldn't be
   different from any other Linux-to-whatever file transfer task. If you're
   not already familiar with Linux, it'll take some learning to set this up,
   but once it's up it shouldn't be hard to manage.

2) Converting to iPod or other formats -- To do this, you'll need to use
   command-line tools such as mencoder or ffmpeg to convert from MythTV's
   format to the formats that are used on these non-MythTV devices. It's
   possible that somebody's written scripts, or even MythTV plugins (GUI
   add-on tools) to help with this task, but if so I don't know what they
   are. (Aside from MythArchive, which is a plugin to create DVDs.) At
   the moment, mencoder, ffmpeg, and similar tools are heavy on the
   command-line options and can take some learning to get the options
   right, particularly if you're fussy about quality. Once you've
   experimented and got it right, you could create a simple script to do
   the conversion (just the command in a file, basically) and call it via
   the command line.

I don't have an iPod or Archos device, so I don't know what it would take to 
transfer videos to such a gadget. Presumably you could do it however you're 
doing it now, once it's in a format you want and transferred to an 
appropriate computer. There may be Linux tools to do it more directly, but if 
so I don't know what they are.

Rod Smith

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