Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

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tarmacalastair
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Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:05 am

Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by tarmacalastair » Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:58 pm

How do I do a bulk upload of channel icons? I've found a source of icons (tvguide.co.uk) and would like to upload them all to the Vbox so I can associate them with my channels.

I've tried these methods to get EPG info for my DVB-T/DVB-T2 info for UK Freeview and nothing just works like you would expect:

Live Signal:
  • No programme guide for any of the HD channels.
  • Icons not populated
Live Signal with channel pairing
  • HD channel guide info can be bodged by pairing with the guide data for the SD version of each channel
  • Icons not populated
Remote XML file
  • My two attempts at this have been disastrous, resulting in the Vbox hanging and needing to be physically rebooted - see viewtopic.php?f=10&t=66#p147
XML file created on a PC with WebGrab+Plus
  • Pain in the arse to set up, schedule it to run at regular intervals, create an XML file, and then link that file over the network to the Vbox.
  • SD guide data works ok. HD guide data not working despite pairing the channels to the XMLTV ID in the exported xml file
  • Icons are populated but then they disappear if you try to switch back to either of the Live Signal EPG sources

I've decided to use Live Signal with channel pairing for the time being as it's least work to set up and the only way I've got the EPG to work so far. But it would be nice to have the channel icons....

On the Streaming->Manage Channels page, I can upload icons one at a time by clicking the Vbox logo to the left of the channel name and then choosing Local or Internet but either of these ways just takes ages, leaving me no time to actually watch TV which is, after all, what the Vbox is supposed to be for!

Any thoughts anyone? It would be great to be able to ssh to the box and upload things like this. I notice that ssh is open but I need a username and password. Better still would be an option in the web interface.

What is the System->Manage Files page for? There is no explanation in the manual (section 6.7) of what it is for. I've tried uploading channel icons here but you can still only upload one at a time and they don't become available in the Manage Channels page in any case.

Have I missed something obvious?

Thanks.

lgnch
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2017 7:56 pm

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by lgnch » Wed Mar 29, 2017 1:34 am

Best way is to upload the icons to the icons folder on the external NAS or USB drive (make sure you have setup the drive in the recordings tab first). Then all you have to do is select them in the same way you would to upload them.

I have found that most XML files do not have an icon listed within. There is currently no way to bulk associate as this would require a script as with the XML file.

The System mange files page, as I understand it, is for diagnostics and support requests so you can easily access the log file etc as instructed by VBox support.

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admin@vbox
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Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by admin@vbox » Wed Mar 29, 2017 6:18 am

Hi @tarmacalastair the VBox TV Gateway is a generic device that was not design to any specific broadcaster's spec, there are pros and cons to this and they are discussed in the Kodi thread.
However we do provide a wide range of options, to setup your device.

The solution that @lgnch suggested to upload the channel icons is the best way we currently support, however I have passed your request for a faster solution to the product manager and we will look into it in one of our future releases.

Channel pairing is the fastest and easiest way to setup the guide and it is lacking channel icons which are not part of the information provided over the air by the broadcaster - and therefore requires adding them separately.

As to the XMLTV - I have tested the link and there seems to be an issue with this specific XMLTV source, we are looking into it

tarmacalastair
Posts: 61
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:05 am

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by tarmacalastair » Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:47 am

@lgnch, Wow thanks! I've found the Icons folder now. I would never, ever have looked there as there is nothing in the appalling documentation about this.

Just for further info, I used WebGrab+Plus to grab my EPG for MythTV after I found that I couldn't get the guide data to go from the Vbox to the MythTV database. When I ran WebGrab+Plus, this created an xml file. I then ran the MythTV script, Mythfilldatabase, to take the EPG data from the XML file and transfer it to the MythTV database. In doing this, Mythfilldatabase has copied all the channel icons to /home/user/.mythtv/channels so I now have all the icons ready to upload and will give your method a go.

tarmacalastair
Posts: 61
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:05 am

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by tarmacalastair » Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:16 am

@admin@vbox,
I appreciate your comments, but....
  • It is sold as being simple to use but it most certainly is not. Most of my techie friends would struggle to get this working and as for my wife, well it would be on its way back to you or in the bottom of a drawer by now.
  • Where is the documentation? I shouldn't have to ask on a forum. I downloaded a newer version of the XTi Product Family: User Manual yesterday and still the screenshots are of different versions of the interface so they don't look the same as mine. It is a little better than the previous version but still doesn't cover most of the topics that I've raised and I've got plenty more questions still to ask!
  • You said: "Channel pairing is the fastest and easiest way to setup the guide"... but this is not even mentioned in the manual! If it's the best way (and it appears to be the only way to get UK HD channel info) then it should be in the manual, along with the channel icon upload method and all sorts of other things too.
  • On the basis of my experience so far, there is no way on this earth that I would recommend the Vbox to anyone else - it promises so much on the website that it quite simply does not deliver.
Cheers...

lgnch
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2017 7:56 pm

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by lgnch » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:00 pm

Hi Tarmacalastair

I can see your frustration but honestly it is not a VBox issue. I have found that different locations do not send the information the same way, and no matter what device you are using some areas simply do not work as well - this could be said for any set-top or tv tuning device, just look at the samsung forums for NZ and the UK. For my own experience in testing these devices, they work, transmitting channels easily and clearly in full HD over my network. However, not all networks are identical and some ISP's limit access to information via shadow proxies etc. while TV companies guard their EPG data and sometimes compress it, encapsulate it, and use strange encryption on it. This is not something that VBox can cater for without feedback, and i have found them to be excellent at responses and support, which is why I picked up the device.

As for simple, yes the issues you present do pose difficulties for some which is why some may require an installer like any tv, satellite or set-top device (not yourself but from your comment, your wife sounds like she may as some others may). As for your statement that your IT friends could not do this - I am not sure that's correct but can see your frustration in the statement. As your post shows you are able to watch the TV no problem, its the EPG and icons you have an issue with, so the VBox is simple until you want to do something additional, like have your own icons or if you have EPG data that is being sent that does not quite conform; would this be a fair comment?

My own experiences with the EPG data has been frustrating in NZ, again not a VBox issue, which is why a compiled list is needed and have added some xml links for the NZ and AU area that I was able to test and work. It is unfortunate that the EPG XML I sent you was not perfect for the test as this has increased your frustration; but how did I know till you tried? There are so many community XML files and none seem standard so some trial and error was inevitable. Also, VBox have said they are working on a solution for you - I think that's a good show of support.

It is unfortunate that standards are not always standards and until devices are in the wider public, issues are not always seen. I know that the VBox team is working on a range of EPG solutions because of the standard variations worldwide - just look at mythTV and Kodi forums to see how this has affected so many. In addition many XML providers are often community based and standards are not always present, maintained, easy to join together, or free from corruption. For me, the support for issues is important as there is no one fit fits all solution in IT, and I would argue you are having good support as this community forum was setup by VBox for precisely this sort of assistance when dealing with issues outside their control.

This does not take away from your frustration - which the VBox team are working to resolve - but I hope it helps put things in perspective so VBox, and we as a community, can work on continuing to resolve your EPG issue and you do not give up as, in my opinion, the box is worth it.

tarmacalastair
Posts: 61
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:05 am

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by tarmacalastair » Wed Mar 29, 2017 10:30 pm

But there is no DOCUMENTATION!!!!

I could have saved hours and hours setting up the box if there was a proper manual which explained what all the options on all the pages of the web GUI were for.

For example, there is nothing at all in the manual on how to set up the Program Guide Source page (Streaming->Program Guide). In the manual it could say:
  • Live Signal. Try this first and if your programme guide isn't properly populated then move on to the next 2 methods
  • Live Signal with Channel Pairing. If some of your channels don't work but you know that they show the same programmes as channels where the EPG is working then you can map the EPG guide data from one channel to another. E.G. an HD channel might not receive proper EPG data but always show the same programmes as its equivalent SD channel.
  • External XML. If the other 2 methods don't work then try this method. This section would need a proper explanation, regarding where to find external XML sources like those you've tried to help with and how to set up various external options like XMLTV, etc.
It really shouldn't take the support team long to go through every single page of the web GUI and write up some documentation like the notes I've made above. Please please Support Team, can we have a full manual?

MythTV and Kodi are both solutions that you build yourself and you have to be prepared to invest time in to get working. Vbox is sold as a consumer box, an all singing all dancing solution to all your TV woes... Just look at the website - there's nothing to suggest any technical knowledge might be required! On http://vboxcomm.com/product-page/terrestrial.html it just says, Setting up is easy! Well, getting it out of the box and plugging it in was easy but that's where easy stopped and a technical mind was required.

I have a TV for watching TV. This box was supposed to do (out of the box, without a load of faff) the other clever things like:
Stream TV around the house:
  • Live TV in a browser doesn't work unless you use an old browser or patch Firefox v52.
  • Kodi - fantastic piece of software but not something any of my non-technical friends have even heard of. When they read that the live TV works in a browser, that's what they expect.
  • I don't generally use Windows but I've just tried the new Win10 Vbox app on my work laptop and only the SD channels work, not the HD ones
Provide a free EPG (as claimed on website):
  • If the EPG isn't easy for Joe Public to use straight out of the box (or at least by following simple instructions like I suggest above) then how on earth can you search for the stuff you want to record?

lgnch
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2017 7:56 pm

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by lgnch » Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:11 am

The youtube support pages here https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCffljN ... ee9SyOCjWQ which is linked off the vboxcomm.com website do currently show step by step guides (uploaded in Feb this year) as well as an EPG help video for XML file upload. Did you see this? Also did you contact support at anytime?

I have tested several of these now and all have worked without incident to stream around the house out of the box as you say. However, none of the advertising says out of the box without setup as you keep referring, perhaps you can provide a link to the page you go this from? Your issues have not been related to streaming, but the EPG and you wanting to list icons. While I respect you have spent hours learning the new tech because not every function is listed in detail - which is normal on many devices (I can name Asus as one - linksys as another) - for your required changes, I am not following your argument that it does not stream out of the box once configured. The youtube channel provides clear guidance for the EPG and setup and is listed from the website. Adding a complete walk through for every possibility in the manual seems counter productive with the youtube guides being available, and as you say the website does not show you need technical expertise, but it does not say you do not either - show me a website that does for hardware? I know some routers that need technical support from Asus and Cisco, Linksys VOIP needed masses of support but the documentation was just awful and they used to claim it was easy setup, but they did not state you need technical knowledge, it is assumed that hardware setups will need some IT knowledge especially a set-top type device. No where is it claimed that it is for a general plug and play no interaction setup, but I must say it is as easy as you can get for set-top type device.

I would also say that it is not fair to blame VBox for the changes FireFox made to their software with little notice that caught VLC on the back foot. It is also not fair to blame a hardware manufacturer for third party community based software failures. VBox offers the Android, Apple and Windows 10 App so it does as it says and provides the web interface as a benefit not a guarantee for a specific browser type, as no one can force a browser maker to work for a particular manufacturer - the web access via VLC still works in Internet Explorer just fine.

Again, Kodi is an option, IE works just fine with the VLC plugin, UPNP players like VLC, Media player, and SmartTV's work fine, you can even open the channel directly using windows 10 file explorer and film & tv from Microsoft, you have the apps, and I am sure VLC will update their software and all will be fine for Firefox; again not a VBox issue but a choice of browser that saw many manufacturers caught by Mozilla's rush. Even Mozilla has said they are offering a ESR version because they know they rushed it and caused problems for larger organizations https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/organizations/

EPG - this will never be simple because of television companies and how they supply EPG data. All VBox can do is work on specific issues and do their best to link you to XML providers where the EPG does not work properly from the live signal, something that MythTV, Kodi, Roku, Samsung (See the Samsung forums) and every other operator faces, again not a VBox issue.

That said, I do respect your comment though, that there should be a bit more explanation of each setting on the software itself - but I must also say that most companies now put the support walk-through on youtube to keep printing costs of manuals down and bulky complex software pages that change often, so you can pay a cheaper price for the device. Perhaps a direct link to the support site and youtube channel should be put in the software's footer on each page to assist people like yourself who need additional EPG assistance? I have escalated this request to the support desk to save you doing so.

CharlieChaine
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue May 30, 2017 11:02 am

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by CharlieChaine » Tue May 30, 2017 11:05 am

Hello Guys,

i downloaded VBox Live TV for Xbox One.

Can i use this app to watch IPTV with a M3u File?

Can somebody please explain how to set up? The Apps aks me about an ID. I already tried my ipv4 adress and the URL-link of m3u file but it doesnt work.

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admin@vbox
Site Admin
Posts: 148
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2017 11:20 am

Re: Setup - Channel Icons, Programme Guide, SSH, File Upload, etc

Post by admin@vbox » Sun Jun 04, 2017 11:15 am

Hi @CharlieChaine The VBox live TV app only works with a VBox TV Gateway device
You can learn more about the VBox here - http://www.vboxcomm.com/

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