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iPhone remote for MythTV

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An improved version of this remote has been made.

Last weekend, I finally got my MythTV box up and running, thanks to the MythDora distribution. It works like a charm, but I was dismayed by the idea of having to sit near the computer to use the keyboard and not enthused by the idea of setting up drivers for a wireless keyboard. After a bit of research on the compatible remotes out there, I decided to build my own to run on my iPhone. Here it is in action:

After trying out a few options I settled on an HTML web front end with a little bit of AJAX, which makes calls to a python CGI script. These pieces are hosted on the MythTV server, and I access them through the iPhone's web browser over my local network via WiFi. The icons are from the Nuvola set. I have plans in the future to replace them with icons that are more consistent with the iPhone GUI.

Here are screenshots of how it turned out:

Buttons in screenshot one (left to right) are: main menu, live TV, video gallery, play DVD, play music. The second row (Navigation) buttons allow movement through the menus. Third row: escape, switch to keypad view, enter. On the keypad screen, the menu icon toggles back to the menu view.

And if you're interested, I've put up an online version of the remote that I haven't tested in anything other than my iPhone, so please don't hate me if it shows up broken in IE.

Finally, for those of you who want to give this a shot for yourself, I've made a tarball with all of the the various pieces that went into making this work, along with some instructions that may or may not work for you. Good luck.

Works fine on a Nokia 770!

Just tried it on my Nokia 770 and it works very good! Simple and intuitive, just my taste!

Looks like Myth Web Remote

This is similar to the Myth Web Remote... Already included in KnoppMyth by the way!

I should check out KnoppMyth

I tried hunting around for a web remote I could base this one on, but didn't find that. I wish I had, that would have saved some time.

:) Perhaps you can take a

:) Perhaps you can take a look at MWR and update it with with a layout for the iPhone. Do that and I'll include the updated MWR w/ KnoppMyth. BTW, MWR does work with the iPhone.

Thoughts on using AJAX?

I had originally set up my remote with a script that issues the command and then redirected back to the remote page, but found it was much faster if the button pressing was requested asynchronously (I suppose it's not technically AJAX, as it lacks the XML piece of that).

To me, it doesn't matter

To me, it doesn't matter what you use. So long as it works well and can work with any browser (well, any modern browser).

It's on my to-do list

I'll have it to you in a week or so... let me know where I should send it.

Mythtv Wiki updated

Hi, I've just added an URL to this excellent article in http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/index.php/Telnet_socket#Examples

Regards!

Mythbuntu

FYI, this always works flawlessly on Mythbuntu. No extra setup since I'm not a Linux guru, it took me a little longer to set up. That means it took me 5 minutes.

GREAT app! I like this better than the Lirc remote I have been using.

Nice one. Ideally I'd like

Nice one. Ideally I'd like to emulate Music.app and Video.app's interfaces for browsing the media library but Myth's telnet interface doesn't seem to have the ability to load a specific file, only to switch channels :(

iPod Touch

I have been dieing for a wireless keyboard for my mythtv box... I have a iPod touch and will be setting this up next week instead! Thank you so much!

very cool, thankyou!

BTW its also worth setting security on your /remote context such that it can only be accessed by local clients. Otherwise god only knows who could by controling your tv!

I've set mine up with the following configuration in apache:

Options Indexes FollowSymLinks
AllowOverride All
Deny from all
Allow from 192.168.1

on os x

Ok.. I put this on my osx mytgtv frontend.. here's how...

1) Enable Presonal Web Server in System Prefs-Sharing-Services
2) Put the source folder "remote" in Library->Webserver-Documents
3) create a new folder "cgi-bin" inside library-webserver-documents-remote
4) copy the "remote.py" file from the ".../remote" directory there..
5) enable network remote in myth frontend prefs

I think that was it..

This is amazing! Thanks a

This is amazing! Thanks a lot.

Hi, Thanks for very

Hi, Thanks for very interesting article. I really enjoyed reading all of your articles.

Any place for help?

I tried following the readme. But I think my main problem is that i dont know how to get CGI scripts working in Ubuntu. the Web page comes up, but it does not execute. My first sign of trouble was that I didnt have a cgi-bin folder in my /var/www directory, so I created the folder manually. There is no other cgi-bin folder on my box. I also tried installing some cgi and python apache mods using apt-get. Where should i go for help? Google isnt proving too successful for me right now.

App looks awesome btw!

Thanks
Daniel

I'm no CGI wizard...

But this page looks like it's got some of the help you need.

Another thanks...

Looks beautiful, worked wonderful on mythbuntu after a little tweaking. Thanks for the work!

Knoppmyth Instruction

Following the following directions to get the remote working on Knoppmyth

1. download the archive and extract it.
2. copy the remote dir to /var/www/iphone
3. created the dir /usr/lib/cgi-bin
4. moved remote.py to /usr/lib/cgi-bin

Touchpad Pro

I was using your web interface as a remote and it worked pretty well. Now I have switched to Touchpad Pro. Great free VNC app for the iPhone that lets you use the screen as a touchpad and also has a keypad that works really well with MythTV. I haven't used the (not free) Touchpad Media Server so I can't comment on that. http://www.touchpadpro.com

ROCKIN!

Wow... that set up in about 30 seconds flat! Great little ap! It works better than my MCE remote! lol... and from the other room, too!

Thank you very much

This is great, at least now I know what to do with my iPod. It was real easy to set up and works like a charm. Thank you!

ubuntu issue as well

hey. so i put the files, except remote.py, in my /var/www folder on ubuntu. everything looks fine. i put the remote.py file into /usr/lib/cgi-bin and can bring the file up via my browser.

the index.html and keypad.html files reflect "/usr/lib/cgi-bin/remote.py", so i know i did everything right so far.
mythtv's frontend is set up correctly already as well, as i tested it with the previously mentoined mythweb remote.

i try it out, and can load the interface of the app, but nothing executes.

do i need to edit anything in apache2?
or does anyone know of anything else i did wrong?

Can the python script issue commands to MythTV?

If you're on the box with MythTV and try to load /cgi-bin/remote.py?cmd=jump+mainmenu (or perhaps it's /usr/lib/cgi-bin/remote.py?cmd=jump+mainmenu for you?) does your setup jump to the main MythTV menu? I'm trying to see if the break down is between the HTML remote pages loading the remote.py script or if it's a problem with the script issuing the telnet commands to the server.

Did you make modifications to the *.html files? If so, could you send me them so I can take a look?

Glad to see that you're interested in the remote. Hopefully you'll be able to get it working.

Ubuntu

I'm having this same type of problem under Ubuntu. I checked my apache2 log and found many of this type of errors.

[Tue Jun 24 10:22:32 2008] [error] [client 127.0.0.1] Invalid URI in request key enter

Any idea how to fix that?

Nice! I like it, seems to

Nice! I like it, seems to work well. I also found some good stuff like this on a site i found called http://www.iphonenewsvault.com. Check it out. It seems to be a pretty good site too.

Setup on Mythbuntu

Just tried setting this up on mythbuntu 8.04 and after a bit of fiddling found this was quite easy to setup.
Here's my Steps
1. Download and extract the remote.tar.gz into /var/www/
2. move remote.py into /usr/bin/cgi-bin/
3. should work fine from http://localhost/remote/
4. if not working check that you've enabled the telnet remote port in mythtv front end settings (Setup>General>General Page. Tick the Enable Network Remote Control Interface) and restart Mythfrontend.

Should be working fine from there

(Adjust the locations accordingly for your setup)

I followed the above steps,

I followed the above steps, worked great for me, I only had to make one change. My remote.py file had to be located in /usr/lib/cgi-bin

(mythbuntu 8.04)

One small problem: The remote works fine, but when on the keypad, it does not switch to the channel you type. I can type 33 (or 033 or 0033), see the numbers appear on screen, but it does not change the channel. Is there another button press required? A setting somewhere I can change?

Mythbuntu 7.10 Problem

Hi

Having a similar problem here, I have done what is needed in the two html files,copied to /var/www/remote edited and paths changed /usr/lib/cgi-bin and moved the remote.py file to /usr/lib/cgi-bin. The interface comes up in a web browser however the interface is not responding to clicks. I am seeing a repeating error in the apache error logs "File does not exist: /var/www/usr, referer: http://192.168.1.3/remote/keypad.html" I am unable to track down the reason as to why the path is /var/www/usr ? as its not specified anywhere Ive looked, any ideas ?

Thanks and nice idea :D

Mythbuntu

I had to put python in usr/lib/cgi-bin/

worked like a charm. THANKS

looking forward for some playback controls on the next version.

:-)

Mythbuntu - same issue

I am also getting the issue: " [error] [client 192.168.0.103] File does not exist: /
var/www/usr, referer: http://192.168.0.104/remote/index.html"

I searched my index.html and strings "www" doesn't even exist in that file.... Any ideas?

Errors

shrynn@HTPC:/var/www/mythweb$ /usr/lib/cgi-bin/remote.py?cmd=jump+mainmenu
bash: /usr/lib/cgi-bin/remote.py?cmd=jump+mainmenu: No such file or directory
shrynn@HTPC:/var/www/mythweb$ sudo /usr/lib/cgi-bin/remote.py?cmd=jump+mainmenu
sudo: /usr/lib/cgi-bin/remote.py?cmd=jump+mainmenu: command not found

Any idea?

Debian + Mythtv

Dude this is awesome!!! I laughed so hard when this worked with my iphone...
cheers again.