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Old November 29th, 2010, 01:33 AM
elventear elventear is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 2
Default Is Boxee stable/usable on Linux


I recently decided to use a headless server that had I around for a Boxee box. Setting up Boxee was a breeze and I had up and running right away. I love the concept and I love many of the things it offers out of the box, but in my experience I found some major bumps that I don't know if they are an issue on my side or a reflection of Boxee's current state.

The major issues I found are:

- The interface stalls, sometimes for really long periods of time.
- Sometimes it freezes completely. Two places I've noticed it repeateadly is when logging out of Boxee or in the Flickr app.
- I am using the iPhone app as a controller and I love the concept, but sometimes the commands sent from the remote stall and enter in a backlog which can be an extended period of time sometimes. Other times, it will disconnect and won't even reconnect for a while. Poking a little bit around seems that the HTTP server that receives the controller's commands hangs completely, it won't even respond to a request from my browser.

Something that I don't like but I would tolarate if the previous things worked, are the amount of CPU usage.

The server I am using has a 2.4 Ghz Quad Core processor, 8 GB of RAM, Geforce 8300 with 512MB assigned from Main Memory, and plenty of HDD space, running Ubuntu 10.10 and connecting via HDMI for video and audio.

I would love to make Boxee our main portal to bridge our TV and the Web, but with ththesee issues, I think the less technical minded people in our home are going to hate it. Any help to improve the user experience would be appreciated.

Last edited by elventear; November 29th, 2010 at 01:37 AM.
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Old November 29th, 2010, 11:10 AM
Silverlock Silverlock is online now
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 77

Is Boxee stable/usable on Linux? Based on my experience with it since January on various hardware and 3 (or 4 - I've lost count) releases of Ubuntu, yes. Is there a glitch or two? Yes.

I haven't seen the interface stall like you have, but then again I'm keeping things simple. No iPhone. No HTTP server. Snort - no Samba even. I have my local media on a central server and the appropriate directories are NFS exported. As far as Boxee is concerned, all the files are local. And with an Nvidia ION and VDPAU turned on, the cpu usage is nice and low even with a 1.6GHz Atom. Well, for h264 and xvid anyway! Flash is, granted, another story. It's a bit of a dancing bear; the amazing thing is not how well it works, but that it works at all! I wonder if Adobe will get its act together before HTML5 (hopefully!) renders it obsolete for video? But that's another topic.

The one glitch that I haven't been able to track down is in the setup menus. Occasionally when going into the Audio setup screen, Boxee will just segfault and dump me out. It doesn't do it often enough (or I'm not in there often enough) to remember to run a debug log. But other than... I'm happy enough with it that I have it hooked up to the TV in my living room. Between Boxee and OTA HD, I've cut the cord to cable.

Limitations? Sure. Multi channel audio doesn't work; it all has to be downmixed to stereo. Is this a Boxee limitation, or a Linux limitation? Don't know; it hasn't bugged me enough to delve into it deeper yet. Is it usable? Oh yeah! Stable? For beta software, it's very stable. Now, will I feel the same about the v1.x software when it becomes available for Linux? Ask me then!
Boxee Beta (32 bit) / Lucid Lynx (Ubuntu 10.04)
Acer AspireRevo 3610 (Atom N330/ION/4GB RAM+500GB HD), PS3 BD Remote, HDMI to Vizio M320VT
Boxee Beta (32 bit) / Maverick Meerkat (Ubuntu 10.10)
Asus Eee PC 901 (Atom N270/Intel 945GSE/2GB RAM+32GB SDD)
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configuration, interface, linux, slow, usability

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