How to link your Toppy to a PC or Mac; networking your Toppy, Web-based EPG systems, DVD burning and file transfers

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leenoble
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Location: Cheshire, UK

Is there a way to connect however the slug connected?

Post by leenoble »

I've always used MacTF to copy stuff to/from the Toppy, mainly EPG files. I'm still getting EPG files via Schedules Direct and I push them to the Toppy every 5 days or so.

The Mac I use to connect is a 2013 MacBook Pro running whatever OS X version it can. Relatively recently I broke something and I can't get the script that fetches the EPG to work any longer on there but I do have it running on my more modern employer provided Mac (that's reaching the end of its lease in 30 days). That one won't run MacTF though since it's not an Intel compatible program. So now I'm having to hook up the old Mac to the Toppy and I pull the EPG files over the network from the other laptop.

At some point this fragile setup is going to finally break. I never had a slug or really understood what it was but assuming it was just some kind of command line computery thing, it must (in my head) be possible to establish a similar connection from the CLI of any computer. I know my way around a terminal application but I've no idea if this is remotely possible. Can somebody clue me in? Does it require some kind of low level USB knowledge or something? Will the Apple dev tools help me here?

Edit: Looks like I need ftpd-topfield. Found a version on github from 9 years ago. Is there a recommended source?
Toppy: TF5800PVR 250Gb; Firmware: 5.13.65T; Tx: Wenvoe;
Autostart TAPs: MyStuff 6.5, eit2mei BETA 7.8m3, SuperPiP;
Other Taps: HDFW [Af|Br|De|E2|Eg|Em|Fs|I|R3|Re|Sl|Vb|Vy|Wf|Xp], Channel Remover;
EPGmc2mei.
ccs
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Post by ccs »

Do you really need to use Schedules Direct, all my epg related stuff simply comes OTA, automatically, without the need to transfer anything from anywhere.
TF5810, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -FmXl+CtEzIScVdZ
TAPs: EIT Sub v0.6; EPG2MEI v0.96; MPDisplayLITE V1.2; MyInfo B5.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; Extend v1.7; MyStuff 6.6;
Sig generated by MyInfo on 20/10/14
ccsx
leenoble
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Posts: 297
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:21 pm
Location: Cheshire, UK

Post by leenoble »

In my experience it's better for identifying repeats. The series and episode data is at least consistently populated and the descriptions contain more information.

Years ago I used to have MyStuff fall back to OTA data when I ran out of RT data but that hasn't worked for years. I might frig around with it again and see if I can get the OTA data to populate like it used to before I have to shell out for another annual sub to SD in March so I can see if the quality has improved.
Toppy: TF5800PVR 250Gb; Firmware: 5.13.65T; Tx: Wenvoe;
Autostart TAPs: MyStuff 6.5, eit2mei BETA 7.8m3, SuperPiP;
Other Taps: HDFW [Af|Br|De|E2|Eg|Em|Fs|I|R3|Re|Sl|Vb|Vy|Wf|Xp], Channel Remover;
EPGmc2mei.
ccs
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Posts: 2689
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:19 pm

Post by ccs »

OTA epg is the same as you see on a freeview tv.
TF5810, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -FmXl+CtEzIScVdZ
TAPs: EIT Sub v0.6; EPG2MEI v0.96; MPDisplayLITE V1.2; MyInfo B5.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; Extend v1.7; MyStuff 6.6;
Sig generated by MyInfo on 20/10/14
ccsx
leenoble
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Posts: 297
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:21 pm
Location: Cheshire, UK

Post by leenoble »

I just switched to Freeview.mei.
Despite using SD data I do have it collect OTA schedules in the early hours. It's full of holes. Currently showing Unknown for a number of programmes in a row on ITV and on Channel 4 throughout this evening.
Example ITV Tue 24 Nov

0900: Lorraine
10:00 This Morning
12:30 Unknown
13:30 Unknown
13:55 Unknown
14:00 Unknown
1500 New: Winning Combination
1600: New: Tipping Point

*switches back to Mystuff.mei*
Toppy: TF5800PVR 250Gb; Firmware: 5.13.65T; Tx: Wenvoe;
Autostart TAPs: MyStuff 6.5, eit2mei BETA 7.8m3, SuperPiP;
Other Taps: HDFW [Af|Br|De|E2|Eg|Em|Fs|I|R3|Re|Sl|Vb|Vy|Wf|Xp], Channel Remover;
EPGmc2mei.
ccs
Frequent contributor
Posts: 2689
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:19 pm

Post by ccs »

You normally need to leave it for 30 minutes to fully populate when starting from scratch.

Looking at your signature, you're well out of date with taps.

When did you last retune?

I'm sure Geoff Bacon will advise, I'll keep out of the way now.
TF5810, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -FmXl+CtEzIScVdZ
TAPs: EIT Sub v0.6; EPG2MEI v0.96; MPDisplayLITE V1.2; MyInfo B5.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; Extend v1.7; MyStuff 6.6;
Sig generated by MyInfo on 20/10/14
ccsx
leenoble
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Posts: 297
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:21 pm
Location: Cheshire, UK

Post by leenoble »

My sig's probably way out of date. I retuned about 6 weeks ago. I'm aware that there was yet another significant rejigging of the Muxs a week or two ago (will they ever fricking end) and I haven't got around to updating my box yet. That said, I'm pretty sure ITV hasn't moved anywhere.

The box does come on daily at like 3am, and is on for a couple of hours. It's not like I just kicked off a scan just now, I didn't tell it to do a scan at all just now, I just switched source in MyStuff. The data just populates patchily. I may only be able to buffer 7 days with SD but at least it's complete.

I sat and watched a scan when I retuned last time, it took forever and some channels still didn't fill up the native EPG with any information at all.

EDIT: updated sig.
Toppy: TF5800PVR 250Gb; Firmware: 5.13.65T; Tx: Wenvoe;
Autostart TAPs: MyStuff 6.5, eit2mei BETA 7.8m3, SuperPiP;
Other Taps: HDFW [Af|Br|De|E2|Eg|Em|Fs|I|R3|Re|Sl|Vb|Vy|Wf|Xp], Channel Remover;
EPGmc2mei.
ccs
Frequent contributor
Posts: 2689
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:19 pm

Post by ccs »

If you have the Myinfo tap, it would be worth running it and posting the results here.
TF5810, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -FmXl+CtEzIScVdZ
TAPs: EIT Sub v0.6; EPG2MEI v0.96; MPDisplayLITE V1.2; MyInfo B5.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; Extend v1.7; MyStuff 6.6;
Sig generated by MyInfo on 20/10/14
ccsx
Geoff Bacon
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Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:21 am
Location: Bristol
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Post by Geoff Bacon »

I think one of your problems is that your toppy software is out of date, primarily because Mac users typically just download the MyStuff tap without installing all the associated taps and patches. In particular, you will have gaps in the EPG because you aren't running my PruneEPG tap.

The way to resolve this is to run my GCBMyStuffInstaller (option 1, everything).
This is built for windows so, if you can't emulate it on the Mac, you will need to unpack the zip file and manually copy the files (as indicated by the script file).

The kit will give you extended EPG descriptions so I doubt you need to get an offline EPG working (well I've never needed one and I think MS does a wonderful job detecting duplicates).

Do NOT use manual tuning; it is error prone. You should always use the TopManager|PcControl mechanism or the latest ChannelOrganiser tap. While TopManager is a windows based program, I know some members have managed to run it in emulation mode on a Mac (that was some time ago but there is no reason why it shouldn't still be possible ).

You don't need a slug provided you can copy files to/from the toppy. This is because the software on the toppy is now "stable"; the only files you are likely to ever need to change are Freeview.dat, FvTxData.tsv (I update these about 4 times a year) and the logo packs (gramps does this when channels appear or change names). You might also need to bring back MyInfo Log.dat

So my advice is:-
1) Install TopManager if you can emulate it on the Mac
2) Run GCBMyStuffInstaller (or install manually - all files; don't selectively pick)
3) Use the ChannelOrganiser tap (installer puts it in \ProgramFiles\Utilities). Alternatively, if you can get TM to work, use Tools| Install Files| PcControl and then use the TM| PcControl mechanism,
4) Reboot the toppy and wait 25 mins for EPG to populate fully
5) Finally. post a MyInfo log so that we can check that everything looks as it should.

Geoff
TopManager program
TF5800, TS On, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -Sy+EvEzPePfUUuZ
TAPs: PcControl B1.4; StopExit v1.01; MHEG On/Off A3; QuickJump 1.72; EIT Sub (Game) v0.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; EPG2MEI v0.96; Font Manager 1.0d; Extend v1.7; WSSkiller V2.12d; MyInfo B5.6; fsSave 1.1; PruneEPG 1.0; MyStuff 6.6-1;
Sig generated by EMJB's MyInfo.tap on 3/5/21
Geoff Bacon
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Posts: 4663
Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:21 am
Location: Bristol
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Post by Geoff Bacon »

Manual Installation

Just realised that the GCBMyStuffInstaller refreshes four files when it runs and these are not mentioned in the script .i.e. if you need to perform a manual install then you also need to use the following links:-
http://www.GeeCeeBee.co.uk/various/MyStuff66ZipKit.zip
http://www.GeeCeeBee.co.uk/updates_4/Freeview.dat
http://www.GeeCeeBee.co.uk/updates_4/pc ... input4.txt
http://sites.google.com/site/toppylogos ... _logos.zip (contains 2 files)
Note: The last three links are used to updated files provided by the first link

The script file compares any existing toppy files with their intended replacement and only copies files that are different to the toppy. This means that, when following the script, you are really only interested in lines that copy files to (or deletes files on) the toppy (drive #: )

Assuming you previously used MS6.4, you also want to delete all backup files that it created but failed to tidy up ( #:\ProgramFiles\Settings\MyStuff\*.dat.*). This could take a very long time if you haven't done it before e.g. an hour or more!.

While it may take a bit of time working through the script (suggest you print it off so you can write on it as the install progresses), this should be a one time operation because, in future, you will only need to update the four files I mentioned in my previous post.

Geoff
TopManager program
TF5800, TS On, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -Sy+EvEzPePfUUuZ
TAPs: PcControl B1.4; StopExit v1.01; MHEG On/Off A3; QuickJump 1.72; EIT Sub (Game) v0.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; EPG2MEI v0.96; Font Manager 1.0d; Extend v1.7; WSSkiller V2.12d; MyInfo B5.6; fsSave 1.1; PruneEPG 1.0; MyStuff 6.6-1;
Sig generated by EMJB's MyInfo.tap on 3/5/21
leenoble
Frequent contributor
Posts: 297
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:21 pm
Location: Cheshire, UK

Post by leenoble »

Thanks for your suggestions, I will look into them when I get an opportunity, but I don't have a Windows emulator at the moment so whatever I try I'm still going to need a way to access the Toppy via USB that ideally doesn't rely on a laptop that's soon to be two chip architectures behind.

I'll play about and see if I can get ftpd-topfield working at the very least.
Toppy: TF5800PVR 250Gb; Firmware: 5.13.65T; Tx: Wenvoe;
Autostart TAPs: MyStuff 6.5, eit2mei BETA 7.8m3, SuperPiP;
Other Taps: HDFW [Af|Br|De|E2|Eg|Em|Fs|I|R3|Re|Sl|Vb|Vy|Wf|Xp], Channel Remover;
EPGmc2mei.
Geoff Bacon
Frequent contributor
Posts: 4663
Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:21 am
Location: Bristol
Contact:

Post by Geoff Bacon »

It sounds as though you can use MacTF so, I'm assuming that is sufficient to copy and delete files on the toppy. I'm not sure ftpd-topfield is going to do anything for you (unless you are using it with MacTF)

Geoff
TopManager program
TF5800, TS On, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -Sy+EvEzPePfUUuZ
TAPs: PcControl B1.4; StopExit v1.01; MHEG On/Off A3; QuickJump 1.72; EIT Sub (Game) v0.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; EPG2MEI v0.96; Font Manager 1.0d; Extend v1.7; WSSkiller V2.12d; MyInfo B5.6; fsSave 1.1; PruneEPG 1.0; MyStuff 6.6-1;
Sig generated by EMJB's MyInfo.tap on 3/5/21
leenoble
Frequent contributor
Posts: 297
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:21 pm
Location: Cheshire, UK

Post by leenoble »

As mentioned in my original post, I'm currently reliant on a 7 year old laptop with PowerPC chip. Yes, I can use it for now but it's not going to last forever. Admittedly neither is the Toppy as it approaches 16 years service, but I'd be happier if I could just connect to it through a more recent device or via a CLI connection that could be made to work on anything with a terminal.
Toppy: TF5800PVR 250Gb; Firmware: 5.13.65T; Tx: Wenvoe;
Autostart TAPs: MyStuff 6.5, eit2mei BETA 7.8m3, SuperPiP;
Other Taps: HDFW [Af|Br|De|E2|Eg|Em|Fs|I|R3|Re|Sl|Vb|Vy|Wf|Xp], Channel Remover;
EPGmc2mei.
Geoff Bacon
Frequent contributor
Posts: 4663
Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:21 am
Location: Bristol
Contact:

Post by Geoff Bacon »

I have a slug that I use occasionally but it is not brilliant and much slower than USB (I use it on our main toppy; it is too far away for USB so I temporarily run cables across the floor).

I suspect that your laptop isn't going to die soon so you could just keep using it with MacTF to connect to the toppy. If it is your only computer then you might want to upgrade to a modern one but that is a different matter (I would retain the laptop for occasional connecting to the toppy - it also eliminates worrying about leaving any sensitive data on the disk).

Management of a toppy is best done through a windows pc as that provides support for the installer, TopManager, Antares and TopfHDRW. However, once the toppy is properly configured, simple file copies will suffice.

Should you upgrade to a newer mac, you may find this will dual boot allowing you to use USB.

These is no method of using a CLI to the toppy so that is out (the Toppy doesn't support serial commands as a user interface - it might do some things as diagnostic interface).
Note: EMJB and myself did create/develop a protocol that allowed TopManager to run across a serial link but I no longer support that mechanism.

Another option is to ask friends if they have an old windows laptop they you give you (ideally XP or Vista so that you don't need to prat around with windows security). It would need to be able to connect to the internet.


Cheers
Geoff
TopManager program
TF5800, TS On, F/W: MS6 Recommended F/W 12/9/2009 -Sy+EvEzPePfUUuZ
TAPs: PcControl B1.4; StopExit v1.01; MHEG On/Off A3; QuickJump 1.72; EIT Sub (Game) v0.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; EPG2MEI v0.96; Font Manager 1.0d; Extend v1.7; WSSkiller V2.12d; MyInfo B5.6; fsSave 1.1; PruneEPG 1.0; MyStuff 6.6-1;
Sig generated by EMJB's MyInfo.tap on 3/5/21
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