bit-tech.net

Building an Ion-powered Linux Media PC

Comments 1 to 25 of 65

Reply
Stelph 3rd December 2009, 14:04 Quote
If you want to control your HTPC with your iPhone/iPod touch, try the HippoRemote

http://hipporemote.com/

Allows control of several applications using your iPod Touch as a mouse, and also as a keyboard. Can even be set up to turn the HTPC on (wake on LAN) the only downside to it that I have found so far is if you are using Linux then you dont get the Auto App switching like you do with the Windows/Mac version, which is a shame.

Am looking forward to Sunday tho to see what Boxee are up to with their Beta! Apparently there have been some large changes to the software, so should be interesting.
Cupboard 3rd December 2009, 14:09 Quote
Did you not put it in a case? I have just put together something using the Antec ISK 300-65 for a project at uni. Its a pretty good case and comes with a 65W psu but has a few design issues. For example with the Asus Ion/330 motherboard we were using the blanking plates for one of the fan holes got caught on a capacitor meaning we had to cut it off :doh: Also to screw the optical drive you have to fit a screwdrive through this tiny hole with no finger access to hold the screw. With the tools we had available, the only thing that could screw the screw was my Leatherman (non magnetic) so we had to drop the screw through and hope for the best!

We haven't got round to installing the OS but it seems pretty quiet sitting at the BIOS and the PSU is passive, though obviously limited to 65W!
Da Dego 3rd December 2009, 15:07 Quote
Thanks for the nod, Richard!

For anyone curious to try a little more, errr, complete HTPC experience on Linux, I highly recommend that you go grab the XBMC Live! CD (www.xbmc.org) and install it. It has everything you need fairly "out of the box" and is a great way to try out a linux HTPC without a lot of installing hassle (comes with everything, including drivers in the install).

I'm personally not too much a fan of Boxee (though there are parts of it I like quite a bit), and XBMC does your proper DVD support and the like while giving you an interface to drool over.

Oh, and for anyone with a Windows MCE remote, soundgraph IMON or other common PC remote that's hoping to get away from a mouse or ipod on their HTPC, it's already pre-configured for both Boxee AND XBMC. All you have to do is plug it in, install lirc ("sudo apt-get install lirc") and select "windows MCE Remote/Transmitter (all versions)" from its setup menu. 30 seconds and done! Again, this is already included on the XBMC Live installer, should you give it a go. ;)

EDIT: Stelph, I'd not seen hipporemote before. That is AWESOME. Thank you for pointing that out!!!
faugusztin 3rd December 2009, 15:30 Quote
Exactly as cupboard said, this is a WTF Media PC. Seriously, GeForce 9600 ? Why ? 350W PSU ? Why ?

Antec ISK 300-65, Asus AT3N7A-I motherboard, 1GB DDR2 RAM, 250GB WD Scorpio HDD, slim DVD drive 2x Noctua 8cm fans and we are done ! It uses 27W in idle, so what is the point of 350W PSU ? GeForce 9300 is more than enough to play Full HD videos through VDPAU acceleration.
javaman 3rd December 2009, 15:42 Quote
Why put a 9600 with an ion? Sorta takes away the whole point of an ion ie. atom + 9400. Why not just use a normal atom board then if your gonna put a 9600 on?
TomH 3rd December 2009, 15:44 Quote
Word of warning to anyone using the Nvidia-provided .run files - if your kernel is updated, even with a minor release (as often happens throughout the course of an Ubuntu release for security fixes and such) then GDM will fail to start, and you'll need to re-run the Nvidia installer.

Thankfully the pre-packaged version available from the Ubuntu repositories (whilst older - 185.xx) can be installed via the Restricted Drivers Manager (or Synaptic if you want) and uses DKMS to automatically build the required module with each kernel update. Anything 185.xx and beyond should support VDPAU, as far as I'm aware!

Edit: Nice article though. I need to check out Boxee again as it's been a while since I've used it (and I now have an Nvidia G100 which supports VP3 :))
Bindibadgi 3rd December 2009, 16:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
Exactly as cupboard said, this is a WTF Media PC. Seriously, GeForce 9600 ? Why ? 350W PSU ? Why ?

Antec ISK 300-65, Asus AT3N7A-I motherboard, 1GB DDR2 RAM, 250GB WD Scorpio HDD, slim DVD drive 2x Noctua 8cm fans and we are done ! It uses 27W in idle, so what is the point of 350W PSU ? GeForce 9300 is more than enough to play Full HD videos through VDPAU acceleration.

From this, I can assume you didn't read any of the article, only looked at the pictures. Honestly, I really don't write words just as black squiggles to fluff around the pictures. :p

I did use the Ion. The whole article describes setup on the Ion: the title of the article kind of gives that away ;)

We explained in the text we threw it together: I was giving a nod to Zotac and be quiet as I wanted to investigate the latest Boxee release and how Linux compares to the usual Win 7 we were using on other Ion platforms recently.

If you wanted to use a discrete graphics card for gaming (dual boot with Windows 7 for example) - the Be Quiet and Zotac board can handle something like the passive and silent 9600 GT. The picture is there to show the size difference as well. I also explain that for the cost of the Zotac board there are alternatives to use: like AMD 785G + full fat CPU. There is no definitive answer to what a HTPC should be, this is just one example, one investigation.

Yes, there was no case, it was a proof of concept investigation not a final solution you should all go out and buy. There is no score. It's not a review. I completely agree that the whole system should run on a 60W PSU, but, again, if you read the article I explain on the last page the Zotac board can handle multiple hard drives and/or RAID as well as other expansive possibilities where the SFX PSU will benefit you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TomH
Word of warning to anyone using the Nvidia-provided .run files - if your kernel is updated, even with a minor release (as often happens throughout the course of an Ubuntu release for security fixes and such) then GDM will fail to start, and you'll need to re-run the Nvidia installer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by in the article
We later updated to 9.10 Karmic Koala via Synaptics, and despite having to reinstall the Nvidia display drivers again, Boxee still worked fine. Once you've installed Boxee, remember to visit the Boxee site and sign up for an account so you can use all its features.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TomH
Anything 185.xx and beyond should support VDPAU, as far as I'm aware!

Yes, that's true, but more update drivers always = better. ;)


For reader benefit, if you are unable to read the title of the article, I added a line of clarity in the first page indicating we used the ION chipset and not the graphics card.

Stelph - you and that link is awesome. Please stay that way ;)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stelph
Am looking forward to Sunday tho to see what Boxee are up to with their Beta! Apparently there have been some large changes to the software, so should be interesting.

Ross1 3rd December 2009, 16:25 Quote
Personally im extremely happy with my asrock ion 330 running xbmc. Might get a remote for it soon, and upgrade the sound to use either the optical or even hdmi. But ive been very impressed by the asrock, its one of the very few prebuilts that has looked like the best option over building yourself.
javaman 3rd December 2009, 16:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi
If you wanted to use a discrete graphics card for gaming (dual boot with Windows 7 for example) - the Be Quiet and Zotac board can handle something like the passive and silent 9600 GT. The picture is there to show the size difference as well. I also explain that for the cost of the Zotac board there are alternatives to use: like AMD 785G + full fat CPU. There is no definitive answer to what a HTPC should be, this is just one example, one investigation.


Answers my question too. Missed the fact you only tested with the 9400. Thought you left the 9600 in >.>

Appoligies for my own stupidy
Jaguar_Infinity 3rd December 2009, 16:31 Quote
Thanks for the review, gives me more options to think about for when i finish my Ion system build :)

And +1 for me, i initially thaught you had left the 9600 in as well
Bindibadgi 3rd December 2009, 16:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaguar_Infinity
Thanks for the review, gives me more options to think about for when i finish my Ion system build :)

And +1 for me, i initially thaught you had left the 9600 in as well
Quote:
Originally Posted by javaman
Answers my question too. Missed the fact you only tested with the 9400. Thought you left the 9600 in >.>

Appoligies for my own stupidy

No problem ^_^
Stelph 3rd December 2009, 16:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Da Dego
EDIT: Stelph, I'd not seen hipporemote before. That is AWESOME. Thank you for pointing that out!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi
Stelph - you and that link is awesome. Please stay that way ;)

No Probs guys, glad to help. If you manage to work out how to get the app switching to work in Linux then please let me know! I assume it is possible and involves a VNC software but I have no idea where to start!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi

Alright alright, :D What I meant was that apparently Boxee will be significantly different with new functions ect, taken from the blog:

"The Boxee Beta will look, feel and behave differently from the Alpha. It takes into account many of the requests and feedback we received from users in the past year.

The Beta will feature:

new user interface
improved navigation
search TV Shows and Movies
a user controlled Queue
shortcuts
more… "

http://blog.boxee.tv/
Icy EyeG 3rd December 2009, 16:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Da Dego

For anyone curious to try a little more, errr, complete HTPC experience on Linux, I highly recommend that you go grab the XBMC Live! CD (www.xbmc.org) and install it. It has everything you need fairly "out of the box" and is a great way to try out a linux HTPC without a lot of installing hassle (comes with everything, including drivers in the install).

It would be nice to see how the Zotac ion behaves with it. How about an "Ion-powered Linux Media PC - Part2" article? :o

I'm curious about on thing though: is it possible to configure it as a media server (i.e. as an alternative to something like this, but accessing the media contents over the network only)?
Aracos 3rd December 2009, 17:53 Quote
Thanks rich, this looks quite inexpensive and good for a HTPC, I have a question though, I know you're a fan of soft subbed anime in MKV format so can you tell me if you had any problems with subtitles and such displaying? I've never used or heard of boxee before so I wanted to know ;)
Bindibadgi 3rd December 2009, 18:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by storm20200
Thanks rich, this looks quite inexpensive and good for a HTPC, I have a question though, I know you're a fan of soft subbed anime in MKV format so can you tell me if you had any problems with subtitles and such displaying? I've never used or heard of boxee before so I wanted to know ;)

Yea it works ;)

Icy - The board has already gone back today, and we're a bit Ion'd out right now. I might come back next year :)
Quote:
I'm curious about on thing though: is it possible to configure it as a media server (i.e. as an alternative to something like this, but accessing the media contents over the network only)?

You mean just as a server? Like this: http://www.bit-tech.net/bits/2007/06/05/build_your_own_server/1 ?
Phil Rhodes 3rd December 2009, 19:45 Quote
Quote:
sudo /etc/init.d/gdm stop, sudo sh Nvidia-Linux-x86_64-195.22-pkg2.run, sudo /etc/init.d/gdm start, sudo apt-get install flashplugin-nonfree, chmod +x AdobeAirInstaller.bin sudo ./AdobeAirInstaller.bin

Is it possible at any point that Linux is ever going to be... well, properly finished, or in any way well-presented, or, frankly, usable by anyone who doesn't hold a PhD in advanced propeller-headery?
Icy EyeG 3rd December 2009, 20:19 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi

Icy - The board has already gone back today, and we're a bit Ion'd out right now. I might come back next year :)

Let's hope and wait then. :)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi

You mean just as a server? Like this: http://www.bit-tech.net/bits/2007/06/05/build_your_own_server/1 ?

No, I already have a server :p, what I meant was to use XBMC (for example) as a simple interface to access the media files on the server (no files stored on the HTPC). There are some gadgets that already do that, but they are either too expensive or very limited as far as file formats are concerned (I think Pinnacle was one of the first to release something like this with the Pinnacle Showcenter).
WhiskeyAlpha 3rd December 2009, 20:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Icy EyeG
Let's hope and wait then. :)



No, I already have a server :p, what I meant was to use XBMC (for example) as a simple interface to access the media files on the server (no files stored on the HTPC). There are some gadgets that already do that, but they are either too expensive or very limited as far as file formats are concerned (I think Pinnacle was one of the first to release something like this with the Pinnacle Showcenter).

In a word: yes.

Just map a network drive on the client to a samba share on your server (containing your films/vids etc), point XBMC at the 'new' drive and ... voila!

Couldn't be simpler ;)
HourBeforeDawn 3rd December 2009, 23:10 Quote
see an HTPC means all of that and Blu-Ray to me and well is there an option for that in the linux scene legal or not?
Anakha 4th December 2009, 02:02 Quote
As mentioned above, If you don't like boxee (Which it certainly didn't seem like you did), go to it's parent project, XBMC. There you have proper DVD support, and full playback, in a little more stable environment, and without the whole social necessity. Oh yeah, and they have a LiveCD/USB system you can use to try it easily.
Anakha 4th December 2009, 02:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by HourBeforeDawn
see an HTPC means all of that and Blu-Ray to me and well is there an option for that in the linux scene legal or not?

[strike]Thoeretically, yes. Rip the disc contents using software on Windows, and XBMC can then play it natively (Although without menus and the like so far).[/strike]

You can follow the guide(s) here:

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats/BluRayAndHDDVD

Or (with DumpHD installed and working) use a command-line like this:
Code:
./dumphd.sh --infile:BDMV/STREAM/000054.m2ts /media/cdrom | mplayer -cache 8192 -lavdopts threads=4 -vo vdpau -vc ffh264vdpau -
To decode and play on-the-fly.
IanW 4th December 2009, 07:33 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Rhodes
Quote:
sudo /etc/init.d/gdm stop, sudo sh Nvidia-Linux-x86_64-195.22-pkg2.run, sudo /etc/init.d/gdm start, sudo apt-get install flashplugin-nonfree, chmod +x AdobeAirInstaller.bin sudo ./AdobeAirInstaller.bin

Is it possible at any point that Linux is ever going to be... well, properly finished, or in any way well-presented, or, frankly, usable by anyone who doesn't hold a PhD in advanced propeller-headery?

A slightly easier way for 9.10 is to open System/Administration;/Software Sources & add the repository "ppa:thefirstm/karmic-testing" to the "Other Software" tab. Then simply install "nvidia-graphics-drivers-195" & "flashplugin-nonfree" from the Synaptic package manager, and reboot.

One good thing about Ubuntu in particular is that any program or driver you want has probably already been packaged by someone.
Firefox plugins are available to help you find it (install "firefox-launchpad-plugin" using Synaptic or apt-get or aptitude).
Phil Rhodes 4th December 2009, 10:40 Quote
Quote:
ppa:thefirstm/karmic-testing

Emphasis on the slightly easier.

Tell me, is there any procedure for linux that doesn't involve knowing some secret magic string like this that you can only get from some guy on some forum somewhere, which you then type in and watch the results between your fingers?
steveo_mcg 4th December 2009, 11:16 Quote
Phil since you clearly have no interest in using linux why do you bother coming in a trolling the threads regarding it?
Fact is there are menu options to do things in this distro but since the internet is text based its actually easier to read then copy paste text commands than it is to follow your way through a 4 level deep hierarchical menu to then follow a serise of click here do this click here do that sequence of help that if you miss a bit can land you even more confused.
Phil Rhodes 4th December 2009, 11:30 Quote
You misunderstand.

Nothing would give me greater pleasure than to start using linux; unfortunately a prerequisite for that is that it is actually becoming usable as a desktop OS. Yes, yes, I know you can use it under those circumstances - it's also possible to pogo-stick up the Sears Tower - but I'm just not willing to commit to the amount of careful nurturing it needs that when there are far better alternatives that don't demand anything like as much maintenance time. Why should I?

But really, the chief frustration for me is that under the current circumstances, the world's linux people seem desperate to promulgate the idea that it is one hundred per cent completely wall-to-wall perfect and faultless, which is, firstly, massively fatuous and stupid, but mostly very unhelpful as regards persuading people to fix the things that are wrong with it because nobody will accept that there are any.

And yes, I know it's almost impossible for people like you to accept the idea that linux may not be infused with a godlike infalliability, so I'm probably completely wasting my time.
Log in

You are not logged in, please login with your forum account below. If you don't already have an account please register to start contributing.



Discuss in the forums