EPG Running State

Added by Mike Someone 2 months ago

Hopefully an easy question... I have recently moved to Schedules Direct for EPG information and all is well. However it would appear that I have now lost some accuracy with regards recordings. When I was using the OTA EPG, recordings started a few seconds before the show and I never lost an end. Now I get about 1 to 2 minutes pre (no padding set) and often lose the end. I appreciate I can set paddings (which I have done for the end). However I am presuming that I was benefitting from EPG Running state before when using the OTA information. Is there a way that I can still use this while also having the better information from Schedules Direct?

My EPG grabbers are set as follows:-

EIT: DVB Grabber - Priority 7
XMLTV: Schedules Direct JSON API - Priority 6
UK: Freeview - Priority 4

I am watching via standard DVB/T Freeview if that makes a difference.

Any help/advice greatly appreciated.

Replies (4)

RE: EPG Running State - Added by Martin Underwood 23 days ago

I have a similar problem. I'm in the UK and I've got TVHeadend set to use EPG grabbers

OTA: EIT: DVB Grabber - priority 1
OTA: UK: Freesat - priority 5
OTA: UK: Freeview - priority 5

because my setup has both satellite and terrestrial decoders.

Normally I have "Use EPG Running State" turned off and set 5 minute pre-padding and 10 minute post-padding. I experimented with "EPG Running" enabled and pre/post set to "Not set: None or channel config". I was surprised to find that the recording started and stopped precisely at the times in the EPG, and in doing so started slightly early and finished early. Also, even though I had "Skip Commercials" enabled, these were not omitted. I thought the whole idea of EITp/f was that the broadcaster sent codes which accurately started and stopped the recording at the times that the broadcaster sent, even if they were running a little early or late of the published times. I tried with EIT grabber set to priority 10 (ie greater than Freesat/Freeview instead of less than) and it didn't make any difference.

Is EITp/f used by UK broadcasters? And if so, is it on all channels, or just the main ones (eg BBC, ITV)? It's no great hardship if it doesn't work in the UK - I always have plenty of padding and edit out continuity and commercials using VideoReDo - but I'm curious about why the feature doesn't seem to be working as documented.

RE: EPG Running State - Added by Dave Pickles 23 days ago

First of all the 'skip commercials' option definitely does not work on UK Freeview / Freesat.

I've tried to make 'EPG Running State' work in the setup you're using - see for the details. It seems that TVH was designed for situations where the EventID is the same for satellite and terrestrial networks, which is generally not the case in the UK. There is a 'fuzzy match' function which tries to marry-up events across networks, but in trying to make that work I ended up deep in the EIT-handling code and had to give up.

EIT p/f works fine on a Freeview-only installation, for anything more complicated use lots of padding - disk space is cheap.

RE: EPG Running State - Added by Martin Underwood 23 days ago

It's good to know what does and doesn't work. I'll give up with "skip commercials" if it doesn't work in the UK. I can't imagine broadcasters wanting to make it easy for punters to avoid seeing the adverts which pay the broadcasters' bills ;-)

I hadn't realised that Freesat and Freeview didn't use the same EventIDs. I might experiment with using "EPG Running State" on a Freeview-only channel, as an academic exercise and to see whether it works, to satisy my curiosty. Given that my satellite reception is better than my terrestrial reception, I tend to record things that I want to keep on satellite, and this sometimes requires me to force TVH to use satellite (but not terrestrial) or terrestrial (but not satellite), overriding the normal rule of "the earliest recording uses the highest priority service for a channel". So I've created a few sat-only or terr-only versions of channels. I'll try a test recording on a terr-only version of BBC One.

I've never had much confidence in "accurate recording" technology, right back from the days when VHS recorders and analogue TV implemented it as PDC (programme delivery control). Better to record a bit too much either side, than to miss part of a programme - or even the whole programme if the accurate recording technology fails to start recording. I saw an example of that when I was testing this afternoon: the tuner fired up at the correct time (1 minute before published time, because I'd defined 1 min pre/post padding) and the red "recording" dot came on in Digital Video Recorder | Upcoming Recordings as if a recording was being made. But no file was ever created, and although Status | Subscriptions showed the tuner allocated, it was suspicious that only the input data rate was a sensible value; the output data rate remained at zero. That looks like a bit of a bug in TVH: you would tend to believe the red-dot icon.

Fair enough. I've established that the "accurate recording" feature is of limited usefulness. I'm no worse off than I was before. And using VideoReDo to top-n-tail recordings and remove commercials gives me control: any automated feature is only useful if you can trust and rely on it always to work ;-)

RE: EPG Running State - Added by G Kazaroth 22 days ago

To answer the question on padding and priority. If you have limited tuners or streams, this may be what you need.

I have it setup so that the 7pm program has a lower priority than the 8pm and so on with 9pm having the highest priority. Then, I setup the post-padding is about 5minutes (adjust as needed). What happens is the program will run to the end including the padding unless there is a new program on a different channel AND no tuners are available. TVH will terminate the earlier program to start the current one. If you have all the same priorities across the times, then the later recording would be unable to run when tuners are not available when the recording starts. This means the program will normally run to completion with padding and if necessary, will terminate on the hour possibly losing the last few seconds of the show. This has worked well for me.

You can use the same method even when using OTA, streaming, sat, etc... making each time (like 7pm) being a range of priorities based on the type of stream.