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<  MyStuff  ~  MyStuff 6: Hints, tips, and workarounds for known bugs

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juwlz
Posted: Sat Sep 26, 2009 10:04 am Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10801 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
Now that MyStuff 6.0 has been released for a while, we have (of course) found a few bugs - mostly minor and/or easy to work around - that slipped past the beta testers, and got a feel for some of the common questions that people have been asking. Bob is already working on 6.01 to fix the bugs that we have found.

This post is an attempt to gather together some of the information that people might find useful to get MyStuff up and running if you have problems, and to get the most from it from then on. I'll try to keep this first post updated with any other useful tips, hints and gotchas that come up in the fora. Note that much of this will be specific to UK 58x0 users.

Updating from MyStuff 5.x / Installation issues

EPG

If you were using eit2mei with MyStuff 5 (as most people were), the MyStuff 6.0 installer converts your EPG data collection utility from eit2mei to EPG2MEI. This means that (in common with all brand new installations of any version of MyStuff) you will need to be patient at first to wait for EPG2MEI to generate the initial EPG data. This typically takes about 10-15 minutes if you have R2-D2's bug fix TAPs eit_sub and Sec_cache installed and leave the Toppy remote alone while it's doing it, but can take more than half an hour (WITHOUT any button pressing on the remote!) without them, and MUCH longer if you can't resist playing with the remote. Just be patient.

Some people have seen a bug where MyStuff fails to automatically change the EPG data source setting (R1) from Freeview.mei to EPG.mei when converting from eit2mei to EPG2MEI. If this happens to you, press a key to bring up any MyStuff display (e.g. Info), and press Menu to get to the MyStuff options Menu. Pressing 7 three times (one press each for P, Q and R) will jump you to section R of the settings, where you can change it manually. Note this bug has been found and patially fixed as from 15/12/09. If you use the install from that date R1 should be set correctly ... but we have still seen a small number of problems with it since then too.

Failure to get past Loading (L icon)

Some people have been unable to get MyStuff past the Loading (circling L icon) phase.

To overcome this, using Altair (or whatever), connect to the Toppy and delete any files ending in .lnk in /ProgramFiles/Settings/MyStuff and its subdirectories. These files are used as flags for MyStuff; the installer normally deletes them, but this seems not to be happening sometimes. Not sure which one(s) is(are) responsible, but deleting them all seems to resolve the issue, and MyStuff will recreate them as it needs them.

Duplicate Channels

MyStuff has always had problems with duplicate channels, but MS 6.0 appears to be a little more sensitive than 5.x. The mostly likely effects that you'll see are failure to record programmes on a channel you have duplicates for, or perhaps strangeness in the EPG.

Use MyInfo version B4 (or later) to check for duplicate or problem channels. (If you use the MyStuff installer, this is installed automatically for you.) If you find any, you can:
Run FastScanGUI to scan for channels from a single transmitter (using a friendly list of transmitter names), and set that up for future use with Channel Organiser
Run Channel Organiser to delete duplicates and other unwanted channels. You can save your list of wanted channels for future runs.

Memory issues / unwanted channels

Note that it is advisable to delete unwanted channels anyway (e.g. the shopping channels, Topup TV, etc. and anything else you'll never watch) to reduce the memory requirements for MyStuff and the processing overheads for EPG2MEI, especially on the 5810 which has less memory available than the 5800. Alternatively, you can edit the EPG2MEI.ini file to exclude data collection for those channels where you don't need Mystuff EPG data (e.g. if you just MIGHT occasionally want to be able to switch to CBeebies or CBBC for visitors, but don't need details in the MyStuff EPG). Channel Organiser can also update EPG2MEI.ini to do this for you, if this is the way you want to do it.

NB: If you delete channels manually, reboot the Toppy, or TAPs won't know that things have changed and will get horribly confused. Even if you use other, friendlier tools to delete them, it doesn't hurt to reboot anyway, to make sure all your TAPs are in sync about what's where.

You should worry (and delete some channels or EPG collection for them, and/or review whether you really need all the TAPs you're running to be in Auto Start) if you have less than about 5MB available.

Using the new features

PowerSearch, SeriesSearch and TextSearch

The biggest, most anticipated feature of MyStuff 6.0 is the ability to use the UK Freeview+ SeriesLink information to identify
a) programmes in a series, and
b) repeated episodes.
It can use this information to set searches based on the CRID data (the Freeview+ gobbeldegook data that you can see by pressing whatever key you have set up to access ExtInfo) and to reschedule recordings to catch alternative showings where possible to resolve timer clashes.

The main reason for MyStuff 6.0 taking so long to release is that we spent ages discussing (OK, having heated arguments about) how best to implement all of the functionality (particularly with regard to SeriesLink implementation) and trying out different alternatives. We think we've ended up with a flexible and powerful implementation, but some of it may not be immediately intuitive until you understand the reasons why it was done the way it was. See also the Text Search Vs. Series Search Vs. Power Search thread.

TextSearches (TSes) work in exactly the same way as CTs in previous versions of MyStuff, and all CTs are converted to TSes on update. You can search for specific strings in the Title or Description of the programme, and all the same channel / time / day restrictions may be applied.

SeriesSearches (SSes) set timers based ONLY on the CRID. When you create an SS from the EPG, MyStuff will set up a series search for any programme with the same Series CRID (SCRID), and creates a search group for each of these programmes. If you expand your search, you will see a header line for each Search Group. In addition, MyStuff will search for any other programme on any channel with the same Episode CRID (ECRID) as any programme found by the original series. In general, these will have a different SCRID, so a new Series Group will be added to the search for that SCRID. This means that you can prevent MyStuff from recording that transmission if you want to (e.g. to avoid intrusive DOGs, or to avoid recording the Sign Language repeats). Note though, that this will reduce MyStuff's ability to reschedule recordings to avoid clashes.

The CRID generally only applies to a particular season of a programme, so if you use SSes, you'll need to spot a new series and manually set a new SS for it next season (although, unlike the Native SeriesLink implementation, MyStuff WILL cope with gaps between programmes in a series of anything up to the number of weeks in K12: Search validity period, which is 24 weeks by default).

PowerSearches (PSes) combine the text searching abilities of TSes with the CRID use for avoiding duplicates and clashes of SSes. Note that the restrictions in a PS apply ONLY to the Text searching part of a PS. Once a series with CRID has been found, it will behave in the same way as an SS; in particular, even if you restrict the channels, alternative showings will still be found on ALL channels, as they are for SSes.

Once you have created a search, all Series Groups will remain even if you edit the Text part of the search. To get rid of them, convert to a TS to get rid of all Series Groups, refine your search / restrictions, and then convert back to a PS.

In general, like a default (unrefined) CT, a default PS will typically set more timers than you expect, and because Series Groups will persist even after refining down the Text part of your search, it is more intuitive to set up a very restrictive PS and then expand it, than it is to start with a PS that catches a large number of channels and try to refine down a very wide search - which used to work fine for CTs and still works fine for TSes. (You can, of course, exclude unwanted Series Groups from the search, but it's not as neat.)

I'd recommend setting K3: Channels to search by default=Single, and then (to make sure you catch the next season, even if the broadcaster switches channel), expand the restriction to All BBCs, All ITVs, etc. as appropriate. This approach will also stop you catching all the numerous repeats on Dave! You may find that you still need to exclude the Series Groups for repeats of older seasons that are running concurrently with the season you actually want on the same group of channels, e.g for things like Top Gear on the BBC channels. See also the Excluding Series from PowerSearch thread.

Priorities and rescheduling

When resolving a clash involving PSes and SSes, MyStuff will always use the CRID to schedule a timer for an alternative showing, even for a search with a high priority. The priority is used to decide which timer(s) won't be set if it is not possible to resolve a clash by rescheduling.

This means that if you really want to record the first "live" showing of Strictly, X-Factor, etc., you should either set a restricted TS or exclude the Series Groups for the repeats that you don't want to record.

As always, more detailed information may be found in CW's excellent manual.

Julie

Edits:
Added info about what constitutes low memory.
Added info about deleting .lnk files (failure to get past "Loading")
Added note to reboot after manually deleting channels


Last edited by juwlz on Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:32 pm; edited 7 times in total

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thesaint
Posted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 11:17 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 15 Apr 2005 Posts: 366 Location: Darlington
Had a funny thing happen this morning Julie, I deleted the shopping channels on one of the toppys from the native list and MS came up with error 111 out of memory even though Myinfo says I have 13mb, it then locked up wouldnt do a thing so switched off(that sat there saying off for 2 mins) it then shut down and then rebooted and vvf, all then was ok. Maybe a bug?
Phil

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the saint

TF5800[/b], F/W: MS6.4 Recommended F/W 2/6/2009 +CwFmOtTdVr
TAPs: Archive v1.0a; MyStuff 6.4; EPG2MEI v0.96; SecCache (UK) v0.4; Font Manager 1.0d; Extend v1.7; MyInfo B4.0; EIT Sub v0.6;

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glenmcfar
Posted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 8:30 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 07 Dec 2006 Posts: 4519 Location: Dundonald, Ayrshire, Scotland
Might be worth mentioning that a reformat is (almost) never necessary. A reformat will lose you all of your recordings but any problem you have will (almost) certainly have nothing to do with your recordings but be caused by a rogue TAP (delete TAP and/or .ini file) or a dodgy firmware (reflash firmware).

If i reformatted I'd need to put my 3 year old son in therapy.

Glen.

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juwlz
Posted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 8:33 pm Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10801 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
thesaint wrote:
I deleted the shopping channels on one of the toppys from the native list and MS came up with error 111 out of memory even though Myinfo says I have 13mb
Did you exit MyStuff before you did it? MyStuff will rather tend to assume that the channel list will remain unchanged while it's running.

Julie

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5810, TS On, F/W: F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 +BmCfCtFsR3Z
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juwlz
Posted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 11:45 pm Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10801 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
First post updated as follows:
Added info about what constitutes low memory.
Added info about deleting .lnk files (failure to get past "Loading")
Added note to reboot after manually deleting channels

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5810, TS On, F/W: F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 +BmCfCtFsR3Z
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thesaint
Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 10:31 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 15 Apr 2005 Posts: 366 Location: Darlington
juwlz wrote:
thesaint wrote:
I deleted the shopping channels on one of the toppys from the native list and MS came up with error 111 out of memory even though Myinfo says I have 13mb
Did you exit MyStuff before you did it? MyStuff will rather tend to assume that the channel list will remain unchanged while it's running.

Julie

I wasnt in MS at the time Julie, I just used the list button and deleted the shopping channels, then used MS epg and it locked up (error 111)and then rebooted.

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the saint

TF5800[/b], F/W: MS6.4 Recommended F/W 2/6/2009 +CwFmOtTdVr
TAPs: Archive v1.0a; MyStuff 6.4; EPG2MEI v0.96; SecCache (UK) v0.4; Font Manager 1.0d; Extend v1.7; MyInfo B4.0; EIT Sub v0.6;

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juwlz
Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:02 am Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10801 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
@thesaint
You may not have been looking at any MyStuff screens, but if you didn't explicitly exit MyStuff, then it was still running. The safe bet is always to reboot after mucking about with channels.

Julie

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5810, TS On, F/W: F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 +BmCfCtFsR3Z
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MarkG
Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:30 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 07 Apr 2006 Posts: 673 Location: UK
Julie,

Thanks for this excellent write up.

MG

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juwlz
Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 1:06 pm Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10801 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
You're welcome

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thesaint
Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 3:40 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 15 Apr 2005 Posts: 366 Location: Darlington
juwlz wrote:
@thesaint
You may not have been looking at any MyStuff screens, but if you didn't explicitly exit MyStuff, then it was still running. The safe bet is always to reboot after mucking about with channels.

Julie

Yes I guess youre right will turn it off next time but in my case didnt have to reboot it did it for me

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the saint

TF5800[/b], F/W: MS6.4 Recommended F/W 2/6/2009 +CwFmOtTdVr
TAPs: Archive v1.0a; MyStuff 6.4; EPG2MEI v0.96; SecCache (UK) v0.4; Font Manager 1.0d; Extend v1.7; MyInfo B4.0; EIT Sub v0.6;

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Valiant
Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 6:45 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 19 May 2008 Posts: 296
Julie, thanks for this sticky - no doubt it will be supplemented by a 6.01 entry in due course.

As regards the lnk files - I don't think it is the installer - it's something else. I deleted all of them earlier today using Altair and they have all reappeared and I have not rerun the installer. I have deleted them again so I will leave Mystuff menus alone for a bit while I play snooker and drink lots, and see if they have reappeared later on and take it from there.

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juwlz
Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 6:55 pm Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10801 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
@Valiant: You didn't read the last bit of that section then Wink. The bit that says " ... and MyStuff will recreate them as it needs them."

The installer should delete them, not create them.

Julie

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Valiant
Posted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 2:29 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 19 May 2008 Posts: 296
juwlz wrote:
@Valiant: You didn't read the last bit of that section then Wink. The bit that says " ... and MyStuff will recreate them as it needs them."

The installer should delete them, not create them.

Julie


Yes I did read that but I also read the bit before that which says : -

Quote:
These files are used as flags for MyStuff; the installer normally deletes them, but this seems not to be happening sometimes. Not sure which one(s) is(are) responsible, but deleting them all seems to resolve the issue,


and since you don't appear to know what is happening here, it would be useful to either blanket delete these files as their usefulness is over within the code or fix the process which is falling over because it is not able to process them properly. My only curiosity was to identify where they are cropping up in normal post install operation and then try and identify which one caused further problems. Cool

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juwlz
Posted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 7:54 am Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10801 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
Valiant wrote:
and since you don't appear to know what is happening here, it would be useful to either blanket delete these files as their usefulness is over within the code or fix the process which is falling over because it is not able to process them properly.
Their usefulness is precisely the fact that they're persistent, so deleting when no longer required defeats their purpose.

However, since deleting those files hasn't worked for you (and for at least one other user), it's probably best to continue to follow this issue in the MyStuff Release thread, and I'll come back and update the post in this thread once we've determined the cause of the problem and any workaround ... and, of course, BobD will be looking to fix it in MS6.01 - but we'll need your help to troubleshoot methodically to help us find which file was the culprit (the other person who suffered this problem blanket deleted all the MyStuff files, so we don't have any more clues about what caused the problem - and without that we can't reproduce it).

In fact, it would be useful to RENAME possible problem files one-by-one, and then perhaps BobD can use your problem file (when you find it) to try to reproduce the problem, and therefore find and fix the cause.

Julie

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BobD
Posted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 10:44 am Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 03 Aug 2005 Posts: 4218
thesaint wrote:
I wasnt in MS at the time Julie, I just used the list button and deleted the shopping channels, then used MS epg and it locked up (error 111)and then rebooted.
Out of memory 111 means that MS has found more channels in your epg data file than exist on your toppy. Which is not surprising given the above. I thought that MS would ignore any channels in the epg file that do not exist on your toppy, but obviously not (at least not in this case). Had you deleted the epg file and allowed epg2mei/eit2mei to regenerate it then the problem would not have arisen.

Just looked at the code, and it really should ignore channels no longer on the toppy (assuming that you restarted MS after deleting the channels, which you must have done, as you say you rebooted it before you got the 111 error).

Very odd.

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