[mythtv] Starting off mythtv development

Tony Gould antonyjgould at gmail.com
Wed Jan 29 17:48:32 UTC 2014

this is my first post on here, so I should start off by saying thankyou 
to all the developers who've built this product -- I've been using 0.21 
for 5 years or so (since mythbuntu 8.04) and it's been great (although I 
wish I had more time to actually watch all the TV I've recorded). I 
recently moved to a new box based on 0.27 (mythbuntu 12.04) and I now 
have a spare box for development.

I'd like to start thinking about contributing to the project, so I'm 
wondering as to how I might start off. I've installed debian wheezy and 
built from source on the dev box and the combined backend / frontend 
seems to be working fine now. I'm wondering where to go next. Any 
suggestions welcome. My thoughts below.

The documentation seems to be at 
http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Development_guide and 
http://www.cuymedia.com/mythtv-trunk/index.html, but it would be good to 
know if there are things that I should (or should not) be looking at. I 
could try having a look through the code also, but there seem to be 
upwards of 2500 files and a million lines of code in the mythtv 
directory tree alone, so this could take a while... Best thing seems to 
be to read some documentation, and to try making a simple throw-away 
change to the 0.27 code I downloaded, and then move onto the 0.28 code 
from git...

Another thing is that my development background is C++ on Windows. 
Although I used *nix back in the early 90s, and I'm vaguely familiar 
with makefiles etc, things have moved on. I can see there's a page on 
developing in eclipse (which I've used for simple python scripts), 
http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Developing_in_Eclipse_on_Linux, but I'm not 
sure whether to go down this route -- the page seems a bit out of date 
as, e.g., it refers to svn and the code is now in git. I'd welcome any 
pointers as to what development environments work for people. I've been 
using emacs as my main text editor on linux for ages now, so if trying 
to use a fully fledged IDE is a waste of time and the best thing is 
really to extend my emacs skills to use it to run gcc gdb etc, then it 
would be good to know (there's an SO thread here, 
http://stackoverflow.com/questions/24109/c-ide-for-linux, which has some 

Finally, I'm not sure what the tolerance level is on this mailing list 
for newbie questions (sorry if this is too long already). I'm guessing 
anything related to configuring the system ought to go to the users 
list, but how about all the other stuff like what does this bit of code 
do, advice on how to approach making a change, best way to debug, test, etc?


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