GeeXboX

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Template:Infobox homebrewapp GeeXboX is a media player software. It can play videos, play music (with visualization) and display photo slideshows.

Major new features: bluetooth (remote control, obex file push, networking and audio partially working), USB storage, USB Ethernet, http/telnet/ftp server, netstreaming, image viewer, goom visuals for audio playback, .... Most of the new features are fully or partially tested, some are not, yet.

Requirements

  • SD card (non-SDHC, formatted in FAT/FAT32)

Optional

  • USB keyboard
  • Bluetooth mobile phone (MIDP 2.0-compatible with AT+CMER implementation)
  • USB ethernet adapter/PC-to-PC link cable (theoretically any model supported by linux 2.6.24.4 should work)
  • USB storage (flash disks, card readers, external enclosures, etc. Supports reading of nearly all major *nix/Win/Mac partition types and writing the majority of them except NTFS/UFS)


Usage

  • Note the video is of the Old Demo not current build.

Homebrew Channel users just need to copy everything into the root directory of your SD card and select GeeXboX in the channel.

TP hack users have to copy or move apps/geexbox/boot.elf to the root directory of your SD card and start the hack.

Other homebrew loaders that support front SD might also work. Consult their documentation for how.

Regardless of the loader, the GEEXBOX file tree MUST reside in the root directory of SD card.


Controls

Wiimote

By default the wiimote is the remote control. When the bootsplash progress bar is reaching its end, press '1' and '2' together. If the wiimote is found and connected, all four LEDs will light up and wiimote will rumble for 2 seconds. If not, press '1' and '2' to retry after LEDs stop flashing.

Button Action
Wiimote 1 Button+Wiimote 2 Button connect wiimote to GeexBox
Wiimote D-Pad navigate OSD menu/move image
Wiimote HOME Button OSD menu display/autozoom image
Wiimote A Button pause playback/start and pause/restart slide show
Wiimote B Button+Wiimote D-Pad navigate DVD menu
Wiimote B Button+Wiimote A Button select in DVD menu/view image in original size
Wiimote B Button+Wiimote HOME Button stop playback/quit slide show
Wiimote - Button/Wiimote + Button control volume/scale image
Wiimote B Button+Wiimote - Button/Wiimote + Button seek forward/backward during playback
Wiimote 1 Button/Wiimote 2 Button play previous/next item in playlist/slide show
Wiimote B Button+Wiimote 1 Button/Wiimote 2 Button unmount and mount front SD
Wiimote B Button+Wiimote A Button+Wiimote 1 Button/Wiimote 2 Button reboot or shutdown

(No, you don't have to point your wiimote at the sensor bar, which isn't powered on anyway.) Don't press the 'power' button on wiimote. Doing that will not shutdown GeeXboX and you will have to reconnect by pressing '1' and '2' again. To add or change button definitions, edit GEEXBOX/etc/lirc/lircd_wiimote.conf and lircrc_wiimote.


USB keyboard

Use arrow keys to move around in the menu. For more detailed info on keyboard controls, view help in menu, consult GEEXBOX/etc/mplayer/input.conf or the GeeXboX site (http://www.geexbox.org/en/controls.html, some info is outdated though).


Bluetooth mobile phone

Not all bluetooth-enabled phones are usable. For an incomplete list of usable models, see http://anyremote.sourceforge.net/devices.html (GeeXboX for wii does not use anyremote though). Models listed as working in bluetooth AT mode should be usable. You have to specify the bluetooth MAC of your mobile in GEEXBOX/etc/bluez. When GeeXboX boots up and finds your mobile, you will be prompted for password. The default password is '0000'. Key definitions in this release are based on Benq-Siemens S68. To use other models or to customize key definitions, you many have to edit GEEXBOX/etc/lirc/lircd_bluemobile.conf and lircrc_bluemobile. Some (Sony)Ericsson models can also be used with the 'bte' driver (GEEXBOX/etc/lirc/lircd_bte.conf and lircrc_bte).


Supported Formats

All audio/vido formats supported by MPlayer (yes, rmvb included), with the exception of WMV9 audio;


Sources

  • Front SD (to swap, use the Wiimote/OSD menu and follow the messages)
  • USB storage (hot swappable. Card readers must be disconnected before swapping cards)
  • Network shares (NFS/Plan 9 shares must be added manually before boot, uPnP shares are auto-discovered and mounted after boot, Samba/Windows shares can be used either way)
  • HTTP/UDP/RTP/RSTP network streams (Shoutcast, Icecast, LAN unicast, Multicast and VOD) (addresses manually defined before boot)


Customization

Customization requires manual editing of files in the GEEXBOX folder. It is probably better to edit files on harddisk and then copy them to SD card, as opposed to editing files on SD card directly. Windows users are also advised to use *nix-compatible editors such as UltraEdit, rather than Notepad or Wordpad. Please remember that corrupt or incorrectly modified file may cause boot failure!

Keyboard layout

The default keyboard layout is qwerty. To change, edit GEEXBOX/settings and change the value of 'KEYMAP' accordingly.

Remote control device

The wiimote is the default remote control device. To change, edit GEEXBOX/settings and change the value of 'REMOTE' accordingly.

Language and font

The default language is English. To change, edit GEEXBOX/settings and change the value of 'MENU_LANG' (for menu language) and 'SUB_CHARSET' (for subtitle language) accordingly. For some languages/charsets, for instance east Asian languages, you will have to provide necessary fonts for the settings to work. Consult GEEXBOX/etc/lang.conf for the correct font file name and make sure corresponding file is saved in GEEXBOX/usr/share/fonts. Alternatively, you can edit lang.conf to match the name of your font file. Please try not to use large size font files as they take up precious memory and affect playback quality.

Boot into console mode: edit GEEXBOX/settings and change the value of 'RUNLEVEL' to 'debug'. Enter "exit" in console to start GUI.

Themeing

The boot splash is hard coded into boot.elf and therefore not easily customizable for most users. To change the default background image/video, replace GEEXBOX/usr/share/mplayer/background.avi. Again, avoid using large file for your own good.

Other customizations

Bluetooth, obex, network, netstream, net shares and so on are customized by manually editing corresponding files in GEEXBOX/etc. Simple explanations are included for almost all the settings. You can also find more detailed help on some of these settings from http://www.geexbox.org/en/doc.html or by visiting the forum.

Extra Information

This is based on the GameCube Linux team's whiite-linux-0.1a and a recent devel version of GeeXboX. Whiite-linux-0.1a includes support for Wii USB host controller, however, support for native wifi and DVD is still missing, and USB host controller support is imperfect, making some USB-related functions unusable.

In short, this is a full-featured GeeXboX port. Nearly all GeeXboX features available in current mainstream GeeXboX devel version and within current Wii linux capabilities are incorporated, with added bluetooth and obex support.

USB performance

The Wii USB interface is supposedly 1.1, meaning the max speed is 12Mbps, or slightly over 1MB/s. So as of this release, front SD is probably still faster than any other storage media usable, including network shares, although not by that much. In addition, USB is resource-costly and current implementation of USB in linux for Wii is buggy. So don't expect performance of USB devices on Wii to be comparable to what you get on your PC. Nevertheless, USB 2.0 devices are still preferable.

Bluetooth

Bluetooth audio and networking only work partially in this release, most likely a result of imperfections in USB implementation. Bluetooth headphones can be connected but audio is broken. Telnet over bluetooth works, although some commands seem to hang the session. Http and ftp can't seem to get past the initial data transfer. Pushing files to Wii is working, although speed is slow. Pushing files from Wii to other devices is unstable. Sometimes small files get pushed successfully, sometimes transfer halts midway.

Network sources

If you want to use shoutcast/icecast etc., remember to set long blacklist or short white list in GEEXBOX/etc/netstream. Better still, just define a few netstreams pointing to the broadcasts you desire and disable shoutcast/icecast scan. The reason for this is because every broadcast url obtained by GeeXboX from scanning the server is saved in Wii memory as a playlist file. Thousands of such small files soon eat up all available space. For uPnP shares over lan, avoid exporting huge and complex directories.

Aspect ratio

By default, all video will scale to 640 pixel width while keeping the original aspect ratio. If the scaled height exceeds the screen height (for instance 480 pixel for NTSC Wii), the video won't play. This means for NTSC Wii, all video must have an aspect ratio of 4:3 (640:480) or greater. If your video happens to have the 'wrong' aspect ratio, you may consider editing the 'xy=640' option in /GEEXBOX/etc/mplayer/mplayer.conf. For details, consult MPlayer's online documentation at http://www.mplayerhq.hu/DOCS/man/en/mplayer.1.html.


Changelog

20081001: 0.1alpha3. Bugfix release.

  • Implementation of optional 'vsync' to improve screen tearing in certain cases
  • Support for on-the-fly aspect ratio change
  • Fixed DVD-VIDEO aspect ratio error when switching between menu and movie
  • Disabling libass to fix lagging and freezing caused by text subtitles
  • Disabling colored spu to fix DVD-VIDEO/vobsub subtitile display
  • Support for vobsub subtitles in rar archive format
  • Support for optionally lowering subtitles into blackbars
  • Fixed subtitle charset conversion
  • Update to MPlayer r27630

20080808: 0.1alpha2. Feature improvement release.

  • Simplified wiimote connection and reconnection
  • Auto-repeat wiimote commands when buttons are held down
  • Kernel patch update
  • Update to MPlayer svn snapshot 20080806.

20080730: 0.1alpha1. Feature improvement release.

  • NTSC/PAL autodection (supposed to work)
  • improved support for widescreen mode
  • aspect ratio software compensation support
  • improved Wiimote connection/reconnection routine
  • user-friendlier handling of boot failure.

20080717: 0.1alpha0. Feature addition release.

  • Based on whiite-linux-0.1a, which has USB host controller enabled.
  • USB and network related functions of GeeXboX are therefore included in this release.
  • Keypressing and OSD color bug in previous version fixed

20080624: Prototype release.


Bugs

More features bring more bugs. Some bugs are carried over from mainstream GeeXboX, some are particular to the Wii port and some are inevitable results of hardware/software limitations of linux-based Wii homebrew. These bugs will be addressed differently in future releases.

  • LED on Wiimote doesn't light up when connected.
  • If too much USB devices are connected (USB Hub), GeeXboX goes very slowly
  • If I change the background.avi, the menu shows up mirrored
  • On some Wiis there is no loading screen. Then the Kernel messages show up. Not a big deal, GeeXboX boots up though.


Troubleshooting

  • Black screen: format SD card on a Windows computer