Tag Archive: ET9000

I have been making a lot of changes the network recently so thought it was time to sketch it out:

The left hand stack is housed in the A/V rack/closet and the right stack is housed in the garage rack. To clarify a few points:

  • The two switches are linked using a 2 x 1 gigabit fibre trunk
  • The ESX servers and file servers are connected to the switch using 2 x 1 gigabit ethernet trunks
  • There ET9000, XBMC, Apple TV 2, HDMI Matrix and Sonos devices can all be controlled from smartphones, pcs etc
  • The ET9000 records to the file server
  • The Sonos Connect / ZonePlayer 90 is connected to the Onkyo Amp to allow Sonos to output to my home theatre
  • The Sonos Connect / ZonePlayer 90 is connected to the Apple TV to allow streaming from iTunes/iOS devices to all zones
  • I haven’t bothered to include my router, wireless access points, client pcs, smartphones, printers and various other devices in the diagram

The wireless sensor network provides:

  • Whole house power consumption currently using a CurrentCost EnviR
  • Individual appliance power consumption (currently monitoring 6 appliances using CurrentCost IAMs)
  • Environment information (temperature, light, humidity) using Jeelabs Jeenodes in multiple zones

This is a good reference point for where I’m headed (not much progress since I last listed but alas, still the way forward):

  • Further appliance monitoring and more importantly control (potentially through upcoming project/device: HexaBus – https://github.com/mysmartgrid/hexabus/wiki or plugwise – http://www.plugwise.com/idplugtype-g/)
  • Security cameras (and doorbell integration)
  • Environmental information (I have pulse counters for my gas meter and water/central heating system that need installing)
  • XBMC hardware replacement (once the Raspberry Pi – http://www.raspberrypi.org/ is available to buy I’d like to replace my Acer Revo)
  • Home Automation Hub replacement (once the Raspberry Pi is available to buy I’d like to try Domitiga – http://www.domotiga.nl/ or my own custom solution)
  • Web Interface (to bring all of the information together from the wireless sensor network, along with the state of all network devices (from bandwidth to free space etc) and most importantly allow central control- so instead of me having to use different methods to switch on the ET9000, change the channel on the HDMI matrix, power on the amp etc, I can do it all with one button)

As usual- I imagine I’ve missed a few bits out from the above but it hopefully provides a good overview of my network.


More Home Automation Chat

I’m away from home at the moment so not much to report. I’ve not had a chance to install the water meters with my friend yet nor connect the gas meter to the hah but I have taken delivery of a bunch more jeenodes and room plugs:

Starting to put one together:

I now have 3 nodes collection temperature, light and humidity data and posting to pachube along with my total household power consumption and appliance level detail for 6 devices:

Whole house power consumption:

An example of individual device consumption (this happens to be the boiler):

Room data:

I’ve tried to create a "naming convention" where the data stream id contains the nodeid (first digit) followed by 1 for temperature, 2 for light and 3 for humidy.

You can quite clearly see where the temperature rises in line with the boiler coming on. You can also see the light pattern during the day (wow- it’s getting dark real early!!!). Humidity isn’t really of much interest.

Interestingly I think node 2 is in the same room as the receiver/hahcentral/hub but seems to drop out every few hours. Node 3 in the room next door is rock solid. And node 5 in the room next to that is extremely flakey! Brett from over at hah has suggested lengthening the antenna on the nodes to resolve these issues- I will do some experiments when I have a little more time on my hands :)

And one final note- whilst on the topic of "home automation". I have replaced my sky boxes in recent months with the Clarke Tech ET9000: https://tickett.wordpress.com/2011/09/20/getting-started-with-clarke-tech-xtrend-et9000-and-sky-hd-uk/ and pipe the picture round the house from these and my home theatre pc (htpc) running xbmc with a cheap 4×4 HDMI matrix I picked up off eBay. I now have full control over these devices from my mobile phone (iPhone):

DreaMote Lite (for Enigma2 satellite receivers):

And XBMoteC (for XBMC):

All slow, but steady progress toward a completely integrated/automated home!


Roughly a week after installing my 2nd ET9000 I powered on the box to be presented with a blank green screen with a spinning Vix logo in the top left hand corner (the VFD was stuck at “booting…”).

Fortunately I was able to SSH into the box and access the crash log:

IOError: [Errno 28] No space left on device: '/usr/share/enigma2/ViX_HD/skin.xml.tmp'
---- saving lame channel db
FATAL: couldn't save lame channel db!

There were hundreds of crash logs with date/time stamps just minutes apart (suggesting the box was stuck looping through the boot routine). Each of the logs had a number of entries suggesting the root cause was a full disk.

df -h confirmed this to be the case:

Filesystem Size Used Available Use% Mounted on
/dev/root 122.0M 121.5M 552.0K 100% /
tmpfs 64.0K 8.0K 56.0K 13% /dev
/dev/sda2 15.4G 67.4M 15.3G 0% /media/usb
tmpfs 155.4M 804.0K 154.6M 1% /var/volatile
tmpfs 155.4M 0 155.4M 0% /dev/shm

But why was /dev/root full when my recordings/crash logs are all stored in /media/hdd which points to /media/net/tv?

I ran a ton of linux commands to try and identify large files/directories but nothing stood out- I was almost ready to re-flash the Vix firmware, then a had a brainwave…

If at some point the box had been unable to mount /media/net/tv (I had suffered a power cut recently) then where would recordings & crash logs be kept? Again- I couldn’t find the location anywhere, so I thought I’d force it…

I took the samba share offline and restarted the box- voila! /media/hdd was mounted but this time I couldn’t see the normal recordings and crash logs- just a single recording…

I ran rm * then df –h

/dev/root 122.0M 60.2M 61.8M 49% /
tmpfs 64.0K 8.0K 56.0K 13% /dev
tmpfs 155.4M 688.0K 154.7M 0% /var/volatile
tmpfs 155.4M 0 155.4M 0% /dev/shm

The ET9000 flash had 51% free space again! I placed the samba share back online, rebooted the box and everything is back to normal.

Thanks to the community @ http://www.world-of-satellite.com/showthread.php?11385-New-ET9000-Disk-Full&p=82840#post82840 for helping me troubleshoot/solve the problem!


I mentioned in an earlier post that I wasn’t entirely happy with the AB IPBox 9900HD and intended to order one (or several) alternatives. Well, I’ve been using the Clarke-Tech ET9000 for quite some time but haven’t gotten around to blogging about it. I ordered another Xtrend ET9000 and thought I’d take the opportunity to blog about the steps necessary to get the box up and running with Sky HD UK.

The first step is to download the latest vix firmware. I found the world-of-satellite a great resource so downloaded from there http://www.world-of-satellite.com/forumdisplay.php?209-Clarke-Tech-Xtrend-ET9000-ViX-Team-Images.
Once downloaded you need to unzip the archive and place the et9000 folder on the root of a USB stick.

Ensure the ET9000 is powered off either at the mains or using the switch on the back, plug the USB stick in then power it on.
Open the flap concealing the buttons/card readers etc and when the box prompts "flash image" press OK (the box should now display "flashing…")
Once flashed and booted the setup wizard should automatically start

Configure the basic options as you see fit
When prompted to configure tuner(s) use the configuration shown below

When prompted to run a scan select: No scan later manually
Determine your ET9000’s ip address: Menu, Setup, System, Network, Device, Adapter

Download the latest Sky settings from http://www.world-of-satellite.com/showthread.php?8060-ViX-Team-Enigma-2-HD-settings-for-28.2E-amp-UK-DTT
Connect via FTP using the client of your choice (the default username is root and password is blank)
Upload all of the files from the archive to /etc/enigma2

And upload satellites.xml to /etc/tuxbox

Then download the picons from http://www.world-of-satellite.com/showthread.php?8056-ViX-Team-ALICE-Picons-For-UK-Channels-28.2E-and-DTT-By-Silverfox0786&p=60088#post60088
Extract the archive and upload the picon folder to /media/usb

Now we need to configure the guide to show the picons. Press Guide, Menu and configure as below

Press green to save then restart the box (Menu, Standby / Restart, Restart)
Now run a Service Scan (Menu, Setup, Service Searching, Automatic Scan)

Once complete you should be able to view free to air channels

The following instructions are from http://www.world-of-satellite.com/showthread.php?9735-How-to-Install-CCcam-MGCamd-Others-on-Duo-Solo-Uno-ET9000-ET5000-ViX
Download enigma2-plugin-cams-cccam.2.2.1_1.0-r0_mipsel.ipk from http://www.4shared.com/dir/wnyHV50A/VIX_CAMS.html
And ftp to /tmp

Now install the package (Menu, Setup, Vix, Install Local Extension)
Once installed you need to start Cccam (Blue, Softcam Manager, Green- Start Cccam.2.2.1)
Then enable autostart (Blue, Softcam Manager, Blue- Enable Startup)
You should now be able to view all channels you entitled to by your Sky subscription
If you press Guide you’ll notice the listings are mostly missing

We need to configure CrossEPG (Menu, Setup, System, EPG, CrossEPG, OpenTV providers, Sky UK OpenTV (Astra2 on 28.2)- Green enable

And configure the box to download regular updates (Menu, Setup, System, EPG, CrossEPG, Configure)

We can now download EPG data (Blue, CrossEPG Downloader)
And the guide should now have a complete set of listings

I decided I didn’t want to put a hard disk in my ET9000 but instead wanted recordings to be stored on the fileserver. I won’t go into that now.


Getting on really well with the AB IPBox 9900HD but feel I need something with a bit more grunt (and a bit more community support). I looking to order the Vu+ Duo or Clarke-Tech ET9000 (or potentially both) and play around with the latest ViX team image.

I will also need to order a new octo LNB and some more ccable for my dish so I can have all these boxes hooked up at the sametime :)

I’m a little tempted to try building my own linux pvr (using something like the acer revo r3610 which I’m currently using for xbmc) with a usb twin dvb-s2 tuner. Not only should this have a lot more power, it will be a lot smaller and save me using two separate devices for pvr + htpc!


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