Installing Mythbuntu 10.10 with a Hauppauge Nova-T 500 PCI DVB-T card – PART 1

Having the ability to watch as well as record Digital TV on a PC has always been something which I’ve found attractive, especially if you have a large screen monitor/ TV with at least a VGA/ DVI input.

One option is to take your normal Linux distribution like Fedora or Ubuntu and install something like MythTV

If you want to have a dedicated PC running as a PVR then there are a number of dedicated Linux distributions available:

  • Mythdora is based on Fedora and follows the Fedora development cycle. It uses MythTV.
  • Mythbuntu is based on Ubuntu Linux and comes in two forms. A Live CD which is installable and an add-on package for Ubuntu. It uses MythTV.
  • KnoppMyth originally based on Knoppix Linux the latest version is 5.5. However, development has ceased, being replaced by LinHES. It uses MythTV.
  • LinHES is based on Arch Linux and R6 is the current stable release, R7 is under development. It uses MythTV.
  • LinuxMCE is an open source add-on to Kubuntu to give it media-centre functionality. In addition it can be used to control your home including phones and lighting!

I’m going to use Mythbuntu 10.10. To be honest, I would have written this guide earlier, but have struggled to get to grips with the Mythbuntu and MythTv documentation which is best described as poorly maintained. Hopefully, this tutorial may help make sense of the official documentation!


Note: If you just wish to added to add it to an existing Ubuntu installation then follow these instructions and then follow the configuration instructions in this tutorial.

We are going to do a complete install, rather than just an installation to an existing Ubuntu based distribution. The first step is to download the Live CD which can be obtained from It is recommended that you download the 32-bit version.

Burn the ISO to a CD and on the PC on which you wish to do the install, boot off the Mythbuntu 10.10 Live CD.

The above two screens will be displayed before the installation screen is displayed. Please note that you may see some error messages displayed during the boot process, do not worry!

Eventually the installation screen will be displayed, select your language e.g. English.

click Install Mythbuntu.

The following screen will be displayed.

Tick the check boxes for Download updates while installing and Install this third-party software.

Then click Forward to continue.

You will now be asked to create a partition in which to install Mythbuntu. In this tutorial we are going to use the whole hard disk, so we will select Erase and use the entire disk .

Then click Forward.

You will new be asked to confirm what you wish to do.

When you are happy click Install Now.

As with any Linux install you will need to specify your time zone.

Once done, click Froward.

Keyboard layout. Again click Forward when done.

Now enter your login credentials.

As this is a media centre PC, I leave it to login automatically.

Once set-up, click Forward.

You now need to decide whether you want to have a dedicated “back-end” server, basically doing all the recording and streaming of video/ TV or a Frontend or a Primary Backend with Frontend ( a combination of both).

For our installation we will go for a Primary Backend with Frontend.

Once selected, click Forward.

You are then asked what additional services you need installed. Samba and SSH are selected to be installed by default, but I always feel it is useful to install VNC as well in case you need to remotely manage the server using its graphical interface.

Once you have made your selections click Forward.

You are then given the opportunity to enable the Remote Control for your DVB-T card. Tick the check box Enable a Remote control, select the relevant remote, in our case the Hauppaugu Nova-T 500 and tick the check box Generate frontend restart mapping (Power followed by Clear).

When ready, click Forward.

Mythbuntu has now collected the information it needs and will commence installation.

Once installation has completed you will get the following window displayed. Click Restart Now to reboot the PC.

Your installation CD will be ejected and once removed, you will need to press Enter to continue the reboot.

On reboot the above screen will appear.

As MythTV has not yet been configured, press ESC and confirm to exit MythTV. The XFCE desktop environment will be displayed

In part 2 of this tutorial we will set-up our DVB-T tuner card to receive Freeview as well as the program guide (EPG) information through XMLTV.

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