XBMC-PVR update


Two weeks have passed since the last update, so it’s time for a new update and “pvr-ppa” build. The most important update is that we’ve moved away from the Ubuntu PPA to our own servers. As a result of this, your previous XBMC-PVR won’t be upgraded until you follow the instructions below.

New package location for Ubuntu

The stable builds of XBMC with PVR will no longer be updated on the PPA, but are available on our own servers now, for multiple reasons:

  • we’d like to keep old builds around for a while, so users can revert if needed. The PPA archive deletes superseded packages directly;
  • we’d also like to support Pulse-Eight hardware in the XBMC-PVR builds, which is not included in mainline XBMC (yet). e.g. sometimes, support for hardware is under development and can’t be included in mainline XBMC yet;
  • more control over what, how and when something is built, without having to wait for a PPA build queue;
  • we’d like to provide daily builds later and keep selected versions on our servers for users to test.

The packages are built from https://github.com/Pulse-Eight/xbmc/tree/pvr-ppa. It’s currently an exact copy of the PVR development tree, but it may contain a couple of changes later, that are not in the PVR tree yet.

Installing or upgrading XBMC from the new location is easy. Just open a terminal window (Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal) and enter the following commands:

sudo apt-get install curl
curl -Ls --output /tmp/install-xbmc-pvr.sh \
chmod +x /tmp/install-xbmc-pvr.sh

Close the terminal and go to Applications -> Sound & Video -> XBMC Media Center to start XBMC.

What we’ve worked on

Since the last update, we mainly worked on speed and stability, so this time no screenshots of changes.


The PVRManager will now start up a lot faster. Our test system first needed about 10 seconds to import all channels and the EPG for those channels. It’s now done in less than a second (with a filled EPG database). The main reason for this speed improvement is that the EPG code has now fully been extracted from the PVR code and the PVR and EPG data will be loaded simultaneously now.

Channel switches

We’ve also received reports about streams that still failed to initialise properly when starting playback on a channel. All these issues should have been resolved now:

  • channel switches from radio -> tv and tv -> radio don’t crash the player anymore;
  • streams no longer buffer up to 100% and stall;
  • and channels that fail to be served by a backend shouldn’t result in deadlocks or crashes in XBMC anymore.

If any of these issues still occur with the new build, please let us know via XBMC’s trac or create an issue on Github.


Another annoying issue that has been fixed now is the PVR/EPG database reset, which often resulted in crashes, and we fixed the following bugs that had been reported earlier: #166, #167, #169, #170, #172, #174, #180, #183 and #184.

VDR-VNSI add-on

Users of the VDR-VNSI add-on will have to upgrade their backend plugin, or the aspect ratio of TV streams will be detected incorrectly.


The full changelog can be found here.


29 Responses to “XBMC-PVR update”

  1. 1 jiamei

    Awesome, it is faster and I have no more crashes. Thank you!

  2. 2 D'Oro

    Epg will load in xbmc only by a Chance of 50%. Sometimes only a few channels will get the epginfo. So i allways have to delete and reload the epgdata manually. I’m using DVB s Astra 19.2 E. Epg data in streamdev seems to be fine. Any idea

  3. 6 Ph. Beckers

    Just to verify, will the original pvr-tree keep going on or do I need to switch to the new tree to keep up with the development ? I ask since you write only about the ppa’s 🙂

    • 7 Lars Op Den Kamp

      The original tree will remain the primary source for PVR and most of the development will happen in that tree. The only difference will be future developments like support for remote controls or other Pulse-Eight hardware. Those will appear in the Pulse-Eight tree first and will be sent over to xbmc/xbmc or opdenkamp/xbmc when they’re 100% ready.

  4. 9 Apnar

    How are you guys doing your openelec integration and builds? Which one of their branches are you pulling from? Are you pushing your PVR updates back to their PVR line?

    • 10 opdenkamp

      we’re currently using the openelec-pvr branch and adapted it a bit so it takes the latest xbmc from github instead of the standard zip archive.

      all changes we make will be pushed back to the mainline xbmc trees when we’re done with them of course.

  5. 11 mrrepel

    Thnx for the update. It’s really stable now (also the last release). Is there any chance that there will be a way to organise channels as described here http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?t=107549 ?

  6. 13 mrrepel

    Thnx for the update. I have some stability issues here with the PVR manager. I get connected/ disconnect / reconnect every few seconds to the TVheadend HTSP clieent. With the previous one PPA44 i didnt had these problems. Also the PVR manager takes like 50 seconds to start up.

    • 14 opdenkamp

      please create a ticket on github for this issue and attach a full debug log, so we can solve it. thanks!

  7. 15 Benedikt

    I have a question there… I have noticed that tvheadend is no longer included in the packages.

    Will it reappear or do we need to add another repo for that? Also, is it still the recommended backend or has that changed?

    • 16 opdenkamp

      Totally forgot to add tvheadend. I’ll add it in the next build.

  8. 17 Dutchman

    Thanks for the update.
    I am using the version from OpenElec (From http://gujs.openelec.tv/build/PVR-PPA-opdenkamp/pvr-ppa-odk46/)
    But I have a small problem: When I enabled the Tvheadend PVR addon and PVR manager I got a message after booting “No PVR add-on enabled” .
    When I click OK, I see the Tvheadend PVR addon is enabled.
    The Live TV function works also fine. But I got only an annoying message..
    Or is this problem specific OpenElec related?

  9. 18 opdenkamp

    I’ll fix that bug this week if I find the time. It’s a problem in XBMC.

  10. I have too this trouble with “No PVR add-on enabled” message on OpenELEC_PVR-Generic.i386-devel-20111023060020-r8871.tar.bz2

    • stop XBMC, remove ~/.xbmc/userdata/Database/Addon*.db
      start XBMC

      it’s caused by a difference in the pvr tree and mainline.

      • 21 TonyStarks

        this didn’t resolve my issue still get the annoying pop-up

        • 22 opdenkamp

          I’ve fixed this in XBMC today. The fix will be included in the next build

  11. 23 fp

    cant get the pulse-eight package to install in xbmc live
    in /etc/apt/sources.list i have deb http://packages.pulse-eight.net/ubuntu lucid stable
    but it keeps giving me a 404 not found for packages, same problem when using curl to get the xbmc-install.sh file which means i have no /dev/dvb folder and cant find the tv adapter

    Any help would be appreciated!

    • 24 opdenkamp

      This server is currently being moved to another location and will be up again shortly.

      Sorry for the inconvenience.

  12. 26 RobertZing

    I’m getting 404 as well. What’s the status of the server? Or is there another location I could try?

  13. What URL are you trying, our server has been up for months?

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