Apple TV USB Creator HELP!!

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by dylanbrown, Oct 10, 2008.

  1. dylanbrown macrumors 6502

    Aug 20, 2008
    Hi guys... OK, here's what's happening:

    I have an Apple TV running firmware 2.2, is atvusb-creator fully supported for it yet?

    Anyway, I created my Patchstick, with SSH tools as the installation option (Wanting to run XBMC and

    I picked up a cheapo 1GB USB from Asda/Wal-Mart.

    Ran the App on my MB - worked fine. Inserted it into my ATV w/ power off. Powered on - Apple logo pops up then runs straight into boot video (The one with all the screens).

    I have since then re-created the Patchstick and it still wont work.

    Any tips would be great.
  2. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    I was 0/2 on patchstick attempts, so I just installed the frappliances in the ATV Finder then copied XBMC and Boxee over to OSBoot/Applications. Works just fine, but unless you're booting from an external drive, you have to pull your internal ATV drive an mount it on a Mac.
  3. dylanbrown thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 20, 2008
    got it to work

    Cool tip!, anyway I got it to work - it was just a rubbish flash drive! Anyway do you know where the media is stored on the Apple TV for use in XBMC etc. Like is it in Home/Some Folder/Some Music etc???

  4. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    You have to define the location under Video. Choose to Add, then Browse to the Media partition of your ATV drive. I have a folder at its root called "Media" where I've deposited a few 720p videos. I tried 1080p, but it choked. The Apple TV just doesn't have what it takes to play 1080p video.

    There should be a way to access remote volumes on your network, but I cannot figure that one out.
  5. dylanbrown thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 20, 2008

    In what exact folder can I find the media in - is it under the home directory (frontrow) or in the HD (/)
  6. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Your Apple TV hard drive has two visible partitions:

    OSBoot - contains the OS and apps for running your ATV. This partition is only around 900 mb in size.

    Media - where iTunes puts all of your media files. This partition is around 37 gb on the 40 gb ATV and around 148 gb on the 160 gb ATV. (Mine is about 694 gb :) ). So for any media you have for XBMC, you will have to manually place it on your Media partition of your ATV. Its mount point should be /Volumes/Media if you ssh or afp into your ATV.

    I do not know if you can get XBMC to read your XML file on the ATV that has all the info for your iTunes content. If you can, then you should be able to link to that file and read it into XBMC. Simply following the path to the files will not work because iTunes gives them ambiguous names that XBMC cannot interpret, thus you will not know what the file is until you start playing it.

    For mine, I created a folder called 'Media' on the Media partition (i.e., /Volumes/Media/Media). Inside this folder are two movies, "Cars HD" (a 720p file) and "The Fifth Element HD" (a 1080p file). So, the paths to these are:

    /Volumes/Media/Media/Cars HD
    /Volumes/Media/Media/The Fifth Element HD

    XBMC does not care where you put your media, but you do have to tell it where you have put it. This is different than letting iTunes work with the ATV's own software. In XBMC, click on Video and you can navigate to this path (/Volumes/Media/Media) and it will parse all the media files you have in there. That's about the best I can tell you because I only tinkered with it for a few minutes last night.
  7. TuckBodi macrumors 6502

    Jan 10, 2007
    XBMC has SMB built-in. On your media server, hopefully you have Leopard running, turn on SMB sharing. Or if you're connecting to a NAS hope it has SMB.

    On XBMC go to Movies or Video (depends on the skin/mod) and make sure you are in Files mode (versus Library - if you're not switch it in the OSD menu). You'll have a scrollable list and at the bottom is "Add Source." This opens a pop-up window where you'll first click on Browse (for New Share) and if your share isn't showing (i.e. you added it before or your ATV is doing SMB mounts already) you have to scroll down to Windows Network (SMB) and click on it. Click on Workgroup and you should see your Media Server or NAS and from there you should see your SMB mounts to select (or drill in to a folder). You can then name the media source on the Add Video Source window as well.

    Not quite done yet. At the bottom of the popup window is a Set Content button which is where you tell XBMC what type of content this source is. Unlike Sapphire, which doesn't care where or what you have on your drives (knows TV Shows by the name) XBMC needs to know by the source and then you tell it what scraper to use. Clicking on the Set Content window will flip through Music Videos, TV Shows and Movies. Using the default scraper is probably fine initially but you can play with the different ones down the road as well as the other settings. One thing I would set is "Run Automated Scan" if you want XBMC to scan each time you launch and/or "Scan Recursively" if you have multiple folders buried together.

    That should get your source material connected and remember you can always change/fix stuff using the Context Menu (Play button for 6 sec) when you're in the Video view. Once I got used to all this I think it's a pretty slick setup.
  8. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Yes, it's similar to Plex, but different enough that I have to relearn a few things. Most of my content is iTunes/ATV friendly, other than the Blu-Ray (which won't play on the ATV anyway) content, so I'm not sure how much I'll use XBMC on the ATV. Does its scraper parse IMDB for title info? Plex does this in Library mode and I've found it to be quite attractive.
  9. TuckBodi macrumors 6502

    Jan 10, 2007
    Yes, and you can also view by actor, director movie studio, etc. as it scrapes all that as well. What I like about these scrapers (as well as Sapphire's) is the automation involved whereas for movies in iTunes you have to tag them with MetaX which is very time consuming (IMHO) and buggy. The other thing I've really grown to like is the fanart tied into the various views while going through your collection.
  10. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    What would I need to install onto the ATV drive to get AFP working again? That was a really nice feature of 1.1 and before. Is it just a matter of copying the right files over? Would they have to be from 10.4 as before, or could the 10.5 files work?
  11. TuckBodi macrumors 6502

    Jan 10, 2007
    Just did again 2 nights ago. If you have an original 1.0 ATV then your recovery image is on there and you just need to follow the directions in the link.

    Here's the instructions I've used which has worked well:

    #6 is the mighty NitoTV Smart Installer (after you installed the kextloader) and it will use those two images to install a bunch of stuff along with AFP. Reboot and use Nito Network to setup a mount. Note though that some Patchsticks (like iClarified) messed up the Kerberos files which hoses the AFP. GOOD LUCK!
  12. ckgoodwin macrumors newbie

    Feb 24, 2008
    I've also installed Boxee on my 160GB 2.2 ATV and want to do what I think the OP was asking about in post #3 above - which is, have Boxee access the media (non-DRM mp3s mainly) that I have synch'ed to the ATV from iTunes.

    I have not been able to do this. On the ATV, music is not stored in the default Boxee location of users/frontrow/music. I was able to locate the music on the ATV at mnt/media/media files, but this directory is full of iTunes style folders named f001 etc.

    I went ahead and added a local source for mnt/media/media files and I can play the mp3s in each of the f001 folders and Boxee displays the artist and song title etc fine but doesn't display a library view of the albums, artists etc so you can only browse the incomprehensible folder names.

    Anyone have any insight on this front? Boxee is kind of cool but it's not worth using to me if I can't play the music I have synch'ed on the ATV.

    - Chris
  13. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    OK, got a chance to look this over this morning, but it's not something I want to do with the patchstick (I'm 0 for 10 or 12 on patchstick attempts). Since I have an eSATA/USB drive as my ATV boot drive, I can pull it from the ATV and mount it on my Mac. Both OSBoot and Media partitions mount. Presumably, the necessary files for AFP go onto the OSBoot partition since that's where the OS resides.

    So, by mounting my ATV drive onto my Mac, I should be able to transfer the appropriate files to their appropriate destinations using the 10.4.9 disc image that is used in the link you provided above. My question is, what are these appropriate files and where are their appropriate locations? Is the patchstick method simply a shell script that would contain this information? If so, then it would be rather easy to move those files over.

    I really want to get XBMC running on this because its scraper is much nicer than dealing with MetaX (and the lack of chapter markers in some files I have).


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