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pyTivo - Transcoding server

Discussion in 'TiVo Home Media Features & TiVoToGo' started by armooo, Nov 25, 2006.

  1. captainDlp

    captainDlp New Member

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    Mar 20, 2008
    By streaming, I'm hoping to serve up a variety of video formats in SD and HD (mostly MPEG2) from my central PC without taking up space on my Tivo or waiting for a large transfer to complete. Once I record a program that is worth saving, I transfer it to my PC, remove the commercials and store it. I'm trying to determine what the size, quality, speed, and re-encoding effort are to do this. The internet streams would also be nice. If I understand correctly, pyTivo can keep up with SD for quasi-streaming but transferring HD is non realtime? Any suggestions?

    Also, I can see programs in the NPL but can't transfer them. The tivo replaces the name of the program to be transferred with the first item in the list or occasionally (occasionally it will stalls out waiting to bring up the program info/start transfer page even with directory transversal turned off). Ideas??
     
  2. Rdian06

    Rdian06 New Member

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    Apr 12, 2008
    How old is your version of pyTivo? I've never seen any of that weirdness with the current versions. The only time pyTivo made my Tivo stall was completely my fault (I was debugging code and caused pyTivo to crash in the middle of handing back the show list.)

    So try upgrading to a newer revision.
     
  3. Rdian06

    Rdian06 New Member

    463
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    Apr 12, 2008
    pyTivo's ability to stream HD files back to your Tivo depends on a few factors:

    1) Tivo S3 and Tivo HD's have pretty low max transfer speed when it comes TTCB (aka sending video to the Tivo). I think it tops out at under 20Mbps, probably more like 12Mbps to 14Mbps. The Tivo S3 has a slightly higher max than the HD, but recent Tivo software upgrades got them closer. And max transfer speed can normally only be achieved if you tune your two tuners to cable channels that you don't receive and come in all black.

    2) If you're shipping Tivo compatible MPEG2 HD to the Tivo and avoiding the on the fly transcode, then you're bound by 1). As long as the overall bitrate of the stream doesn't exceed the max transfer capability, you can watch in realtime.

    3) If your source needs to be transcoded on the fly, the conversion to MPEG2 is processor intensive so a faster machine will tend to allow for a faster transfer to a point. My main pyTivo server is currently a Dual 2.0 GHz PowerMac G5 tower. Transcoding HD material on it I get about 20 fps on video that is 24 fps native. So in my case I'm CPU bound and I can watch HD in near realtime. Intel Core 2 Duo based machines are supposed to handle the ffmpeg transcode pretty well so I'm hoping to acheive realtime HD for most stuff once I reshuffle my hardware.
     
  4. captainDlp

    captainDlp New Member

    8
    0
    Mar 20, 2008
    I finally got some transfers to work by 1) removing the directory traversal setting 2) changing to a directory that is not the root drive and 3) removing all .tivo and .mp4 files from that dir. I can get mpeg 2 files and an .mkv. Not sure which step fixed it but its a start. I have pytivo v2008.05.02.

    Did I read that .tivo files need a _tivo_ marker in for the .conf section? Also, if I have an .mkv (or others) that have to be transcoded, is it better to download the transcoded file from the tivo and replace the original to reduce transfer time or is there loss of quality??

    Some good info on transcoding limitations. I have the tivoHD.
     
  5. PaulS

    PaulS Member

    674
    1
    Sep 16, 2002
    Southern NH
    Most likely yes. This will save you from having to transcode the file on every transfer from the PC to the TiVo. At that point, your transfer speeds should only be bounded by your hard disk read rate and your network throughput between the PC and TiVo.

    Transcodes (especially HD ones) are quite CPU intensive, and you'll need a fairly beefy machine in order to transcode+transfer at real-time speeds.
     
  6. Nov 4, 2008 #2006 of 5683
    captainDlp

    captainDlp New Member

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    0
    Mar 20, 2008
    Is there an easy way to playback a vob tree? I would like to rip DVDs without touching the authored files but it looks like I would need to watch the individual vob files one at a time from the tivo?
     
  7. Nov 4, 2008 #2007 of 5683
    jcthorne

    jcthorne Active Member

    2,719
    2
    Jan 28, 2002
    Houston
    I am not quite sure what you are asking for here. Tivo will not play unmodified VOBs as is. Well, without at least changing the file extension.

    You can rip a single tree to a single large VOB with out transcoding and then rename it a .mpg file and Tivo will accept/play it.
     
  8. Nov 4, 2008 #2008 of 5683
    KevinG

    KevinG Member

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    Sep 3, 2003
    Mt. Laurel, NJ.
    This doesn't seem to be true (anymore?). I just tried this last night, and it played an untouched VOB file just fine (though it got confused at the end and said it was waiting to download more even though it was finished).

    I too would love for pytivo to understand how to find the "next" vob automatically so it could just keep on going.

    Assuming that isn't happening anytime soon, can anyone point me to a simple one click solution to rip a DVD to a Tivo friendly format?

    Thanks.
    -Kevin
     
  9. Nov 4, 2008 #2009 of 5683
    mbklein

    mbklein Foreign Contaminant

    9,979
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    Oct 24, 2000
    Evanston, IL
    Handbrake
     
  10. Nov 4, 2008 #2010 of 5683
    KevinG

    KevinG Member

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    Sep 3, 2003
    Mt. Laurel, NJ.
    Thank you sir. Thank you very much.
     
  11. Nov 4, 2008 #2011 of 5683
    mbklein

    mbklein Foreign Contaminant

    9,979
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    Oct 24, 2000
    Evanston, IL
  12. Nov 4, 2008 #2012 of 5683
    rambler

    rambler Member

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    Dec 3, 2005
  13. Nov 5, 2008 #2013 of 5683
    jcthorne

    jcthorne Active Member

    2,719
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    Jan 28, 2002
    Houston
    I use DVDFab
     
  14. Nov 6, 2008 #2014 of 5683
    Jkjowers

    Jkjowers New Member

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    Jan 25, 2004
    Could someone point me to an explanation on how to transfer PC movies into a TIVO FOLDER created using pyTivo. Someone tried to explain it to me before, but was assuming I knew much more about pyTivo meta files. So far I have only been able to just add a synopsis to movies or to default groups of movies inside computer folders. I am trying to learn from the previous example:



    I'm still comfussed about what a "seriesId" is... I have tried to add one with the same name as a folder already on my TiVo without luck.

    Help :)
     
  15. Nov 7, 2008 #2015 of 5683
    dcahoe

    dcahoe TiVoPlayList Author

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    Jan 28, 2006
    Louisville, KY
    seriesId is actually a code that would have originally come from a TiVo which I believe in turn actually came from the guide data. It is used to group shows into series.

    From the pyTivo website:

    seriesId
    Usually starts with "SH" and followed by 6-8 digits. TiVo uses this to allow for grouping once a program is transferred to a TiVo, provided the TiVo is set to grouping in the NPL (Now Playing List). Leaving this field blank or omitting doesnÂ’t seem to cause any problems, except when it comes time to group when transferring to TiVo. Will not group without a series ID.

    SH is for general TV shows.
    MV is for movies (e.g. Amazon Unbox).
    SP is for sports.
    TS is for Tivocast content.

    So something like SH012345 would be the right format, but if it is not a real SeriesID from the guide data, I'm not sure what the TiVo would do with it.
     
  16. Nov 7, 2008 #2016 of 5683
    Jkjowers

    Jkjowers New Member

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    Jan 25, 2004
    I understand that at least... but I am doing something wrong. I have a folder with two small WMV files in it. I give both the identical meta files with a seriesId that is:

    seriesId : SHThe Office

    Both copy seperatly with the title name (not in a folder). Should I use all upper case? Should I remove the space? Should I use only the first 8 letters? Should I use the same name in the "Title"?

    It would help if someone could actaully show me a working seriesId and anything that must correspond to it.

    I'm assuming you didn't actuall mean for me to use numbers only.
     
  17. Nov 7, 2008 #2017 of 5683
    txporter

    txporter One sec, almost done

    666
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    Sep 17, 2006
    Austin, TX
    He did. There is a program called MetaGenerator that is normally used with pyTivo. It is an executable program that will search the TV database (TVDB) for the appropriate metadata for particular TV shows. I use it quite a bit. I pulled up The Office, however, and there isn't a SeriesID listed. Not sure what to make of that, the other shows that I have looked up have all been listed. Maybe someone can pull an episode of the Office down and pull the SeriesID from the tivo header for you.

    Jason

    examples:
    The Wire = SH507321
    Heroes = SH848361
     
  18. Nov 7, 2008 #2018 of 5683
    txporter

    txporter One sec, almost done

    666
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    Sep 17, 2006
    Austin, TX
    Ok, with a little searching I found the way to pull the seriesID yourself (if you have a recorded episode of The Office on your tivo):

    Replace <tivo ip> with the IP address of your tivo in the address below. This will pull up an XML view of your tivo recordings. You should be able to search for 'office' to jump down to an episode. The seriesID will be listed in the XML. That is the string you will need for your metadata.

    Code:
    https://<tivo ip>/TiVoConnect?Command=QueryContainer&Container=&#37;2FNowPlaying&Recurse=Yes
    Jason
     
  19. Nov 7, 2008 #2019 of 5683
    Jkjowers

    Jkjowers New Member

    29
    0
    Jan 25, 2004
    Well that helps a lot. Thanks. I will start playing with MetaGenerator... I had always assumed I wouldn't need it. If I need access to a number code I will have to use it.

    Thanks again! :)
     
  20. Nov 7, 2008 #2020 of 5683
    txporter

    txporter One sec, almost done

    666
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    Sep 17, 2006
    Austin, TX
    Forgot to mention in my post above that you will also need your MAK in order to log onto your tivo.

    Username=tivo
    Password=MAK

    Jason
     

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