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Change Log
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This is a summary of the changes in VDR 2.0.0 since the last stable version 1.6.0. It only contains things that are of actual importance to the user and doesn't mention the many fixes and improvements that have been made "behind the scenes". See the file HISTORY that comes with the VDR source for a detailed list of all changes.

Full support for HDTV

  • VDR now fully supports HDTV.
Satellite Channel Routing
  • VDR now supports "Satellite Channel Routing" (SCR) according to EN50494 (based on the "unicable" patch). Since "Unicable" is a registered trademark and stands for only one of many implementations of SCR, the following changes have been made compared to the patch, which need to be taken into account by people who have set up their system using the patch:
    • The 'U' parameter in the diseqc.conf file has been changed to 'S' ("Scr").
    • The configuration file name has been changed from "unicable.conf" to "scr.conf".
Device Bonding
  • The new setup options "LNB/Device n connected to sat cable" can be used to define which DVB-S devices are connected to the same sat cable and are therefore "bonded". This obsoletes the LNBSHARE patch. Users of the LNBSHARE patch will need to newly set up their sat devices with the above options.
  • Implemented handling of HD resolution subtitles according to v1.3.1 of ETSI EN 300 743, chapter 7.2.1.
  • Fixed handling DVB subtitles and implemented decoding textual DVB subtitles.
  • Added cDevice::NumProvidedSystems() to PLUGINS.html (was missing since it had been implemented).
  • The 'sky' plugin is no longer part of the VDR source.
  • IMPORTANT NOTE TO PLUGIN AUTHORS: a plugin that implements a derived cDevice class that can replay video must now call the MakePrimaryDevice() function of its base class.
  • Implemented cDeviceHook to allow plugins more control over which device can provide which transponder.
  • Plugins can now define new sources. In order to implement this, the following changes were made:
    • The transponder parameter string is no longer interpreted by cChannel, but rather stored as is and used only by the respective device. That way plugins can use a channel's parameter string to store arbitrary data (see vdr.5).
    • The new class cSourceParam can be used by plugins to define new sources, and to implement OSD items that will be used in the channel editor for editing the source specific parameters of a channel (see dvbdevice.c for an example of how this is done for the default DVB devices).
    • Purely numerical values are no longer accepted in the 'source' parameter of a channel.
    This obsoletes the PLUGINPARAM patch.
  • The dvbhddevice plugin is now part of the VDR distribution archive.
  • The pic2mpg script of the 'pictures' plugin now generates HD images. The old SD version is still available as pic2mpg-sd.
  • The dvbsddevice plugin now supports the new option --outputonly, which disables receiving on SD FF devices and uses the device only for output.
  • The code for the RCU remote control unit has been moved into a separate plugin named "rcu". The REMOTE=RCU option in the 'make' call for VDR is now obsolete. The command line option --rcu is now obsolete. Use -Prcu instead. If you have used --rcu with a device path, use -P"rcu -d<device>".
  • Removed the obsolete function cEITScanner::UsesDevice(). If a plugin has used this function to find out whether a call to its cStatus::ChannelSwitch() function was due to a live channel switch, it can use that function's new parameter LiveView. Any plugins that implement cStatus::ChannelSwitch() need to add the parameter 'bool LiveView' to that function.
  • Added a new plugin interface for implementing EPG handlers.
    • A plugin can implement an EPG handler by creating an object derived from cEpgHandler and implementing the necessary member functions.
    • The special handling of events with table id 0x00 has been dropped. For backwards compatibility EPG events with table ids lower than 0x4E will be treated as if they had a table id of 0x4E, and the new plugin 'epgtableid0' can be used to have them handled like in previous versions.
    • The default table id for a newly created cEvent has been changed to 0xFF, which is higher than any normal table id that is broadcast in the EIT data.
    See PLUGINS.html, section "Electronic Program Guide" for more information.
  • The cThread constructor now has an additional boolean parameter that can be set to true to have this thread run at a lower priority. Plugin authors that use low priority threads may want to use this instead of the calls to SetPriority(19) and SetIOPriority(7). The priority of a thread ("low" or "high") is now logged when the thread starts.
  • The plugin Makefiles now have a separate 'install' target.
  • Plugin Makefiles now use DESTDIR and the 'install' program.
  • Plugin Makefiles can now include a configuration file for compile time parameters.
  • Plugins that implement an interface to any kind of remote controls shall use the new parameters Setup.RcRepeatDelay and Setup.RcRepeatDelta to allow the user to adjust the behavior of the remote control's repeat function. They shall also remove any setup options they might have that serve the same purpose.
  • Added demos of the DrawEllipse() and DrawSlope() function to the 'osddemo' plugin (press '1' or '2', respectively).
  • The 'sttng' skin now displays two colored bars at the bottom of the channel display, indicating the strength (upper bar) and quality (lower bar) of the received signal. The number to the left of these bars indicates the actual device the current channel is being received with.
  • Skins can now inquire the menu category for which their cSkinDisplayMenu is currently being used. This can be done either through a call to cSkinDisplayMenu::MenuCategory() or by reimplementing cSkinDisplayMenu::SetMenuCategory(). This information allows a skin to use special icons or decorations for the various types of menus in VDR.
  • The new member function cSkinDisplayReplay::SetRecording() allows a skin to display more information about the currently played recording.
  • The new skin "LCARS" is an enhanced version of the "ST:TNG" skin (which is still there in its original layout, for those who don't like the LCARS skin, or can't use it due to OSD limitations). The LCARS skin utilizes the new "menu category" feature to display additional information on the main menu page. It shows upcoming timers and the system's devices, as well as which device is recording which timers. The upper pane of the main menu displays the programme data in live and replay mode, and a progress bar. An indicator on the right side of the device list shows which device is currently used for live viewing, and whether it is in transfer mode. The individual device displays show the device number, the device type, which CAM (if any ) is currently assigned to the device, and the signal strength and quality. On the left side of the OSD there is a permanent display of the current date and time, the disk usage and the system load. "LCARS" is the new default skin of VDR. It requires at least a 4bpp (16 color) full screen OSD, but you can still operate it if your OSD can handle only fewer colors (in which case you may want to switch to the "ST:TNG" or "Classic VDR" skin).
  • The new functions SetItemEvent(), SetItemTimer(), SetItemChannel() and SetItemRecording() of the cSkinDisplayMenu class can be reimplemented by skin plugins to display these items in a more elaborate way than just a simple line of text.
Remote control
  • Changed the default location for the LIRC socket to /var/run/lirc/lircd.
  • The new setup options "OSD/Color key [0123]" can be used to adjust the sequence of the color buttons displayed in the menus to that of the color keys on your remote control. Authors of plugins that implement skins may want to adapt their SetButtons() function in order to make use of this new feature. See, for instance, the function cSkinClassicDisplayMenu::SetButtons() in skinclassic.c for details.
  • Added user defined key kUser0.
  • The new remote control key "Play/Pause" can be used with remote controls that don't have separate keys for "Play" and "Pause", but rather have a single key for both functions.
  • The new options "Setup/Miscellaneous/Remote control repeat delay" and "Setup/Miscellaneous/Remote control repeat delta" can be used to adjust the behavior of the remote control in case a key is held pressed down for a while, so that the repeat function kicks in.
  • Re-implemented handling of DVB-S2, which first appeared in version 1.5.14, but was revoked in version 1.5.15 in favor of making a stable version 1.6.0. Note that the channels.conf file now supports additional parameters, so you may want to make sure you have a backup of this file in case you need to go back to the previous version of VDR!
  • cDvbDevice now uses the FE_CAN_2G_MODULATION flag to determine whether a device can handle DVB-S2.
  • The support for full featured DVB cards of the TT/FuSi design has been moved into the new plugin 'dvbsddevice'. On systems that use such a card as their primary device, this plugin now needs to be loaded when running VDR in order to view live or recorded video. If the plugin is not loaded, the card will be treated like a budget DVB card, and there will be no OSD or viewing capability.
  • Added support for DVB cards with multiple fontends. Note that this only works for DVB cards where each frontend can be used independently of all the others on the same adapter.
  • Added support for ATSC devices. This obsoletes the ATSC patch.
  • The new functions cDevice::SignalStrength() and cDevice::SignalQuality() can be used to determine the signal strength and quality of a given device.
  • The new function cDevice::ProvidesEIT() is used to determine whether a device can provide EIT data and will thus be used in cEITScanner::Process() to receive EIT data from the channels it can receive. Note that by default it is assumed that a device can't provide EIT data, and only the builtin cDvbDevice returns true from this function.
  • Added support for devices with more than one delivery system per frontend. This requires a DVB driver with version 5.5 or higher that can handle the DTV_ENUM_DELSYS call. With older drivers it will fall back to one delivery system per frontend.
  • Added support for handling DVB-T2 transponders. This requires a DVB driver with version 5.3 or higher that can handle the DTV_DVBT2_PLP_ID call (which has been renamed to DTV_STREAM_ID in DVB API 5.8).
  • The DVB device adapters/frontends are now probed by scanning the /dev/dvb directory instead of looping through adapter/frontend numbers. This allows for "holes" in the device numbering.
  • Removed the "PrimaryLimit". Old "full featured" DVB cards can be run with the --outputonly option to avoid problems with recording high bandwidth channels. Besides, with HDTV becoming ever more popular those cards are pretty much obsolete by now (the TT S2-6400 has no problems recording and replaying high bandwidth channels simultaneously). And, last but not least, people using software players won't notice this change, anyway.
  • The new function cDevice::DeviceName() returns a string identifying the name of the given device.
  • The new function cDevice::DeviceType() returns a string identifying the type of the given device.
  • The new function cDevice::ReadFilter() can be used by devices to implement their own way of retrieving section filter data.
  • The new function cDevice::HasInternalCam() can be implemented by devices that provide encrypted channels in an already decrypted form, without requiring explicit handling of a CAM.
  • The new functions cDevice::CanScaleVideo() and cDevice::ScaleVideo() can be used by derived output devices to implement scaling the video to a given size and location.
  • Added support for DVB-S2 and DVB-T2 transponders that use "multi streaming".
  • Added device definitions to the diseqc.conf file format, so that certain satellite positions can be limited to a given list of devices. This obsoletes the SOURCECAPS patch.
  • Transponders that use "8psk turbo fec" (a non-standard mode used by North American providers) are now identified by assuming that all 8psk transponders on DVB-S use "turbo fec".
  • The epg.data file is now read in a separate thread to make the startup process faster in case the file is very large.
  • Moved cleaning up the EPG data and writing the epg.data file into a separate thread to avoid sluggish response to user input on slow systems
  • The OSD and font sizes are now defined in percent of the actual video display size. The maximum OSD size has been raised to 1920x1080, to allow full screen OSD on HD systems.
  • The OSD size is now automatically adjusted to the actual video display (provided the output device implements the GetOsdSize() function).
  • The OSD now has full TrueColor support. There can be several "pixmaps" that can be overlayed with alpha blending. All existing skins should work out of the box with the TrueColor OSD - the only exception being cOsd::GetBitmap(). Since the TrueColor OSD doesn't use bitmaps, this function will return a dummy bitmap, which may not be what the plugin expects. As long as this bitmap is only used for setting the palette, there is no problem. However, any other operations on this bitmap will have no effect. See the description of the cPixmap functions in osd.h for details about the new functionalities. The "ST:TNG Panels" skin has been enhanced to automatically use the TrueColor OSD if available. The "osddemo" plugin has been extended to show some of the possibilities of the TrueColor OSD if it is run on a system that actually provides TrueColor support.
  • The Audio and Subtitles options are now available through the Green and Yellow keys in the Setup/DVB menu. This is mainly for remote controls that don't have dedicated keys for these functions.
  • The Recordings menu now displays the length (in hours:minutes) of each recording Note that the "new" indicator has been moved from the recording time to the length column. This new format is also used by the SVDRP command LSTR, so in case you have an application that parses the LSTR output, you will need to adjust it to the new format.
  • The new setup option "Replay/Show remaining time" can be used to switch between showing the total length or the remaining time of the recording that is currently replayed.
  • The replay progress display is now turned on whenever a mark is toggled (not only when one is set).
  • The Green button in the "Edit timer" menu can now be used to toggle between single shot and repeating timers. This is the same as pressing '0' when the "Day" field is selected, but it works at any time (and is more obvious).
  • When estimating the remaining disk space (in hours), the average data rate of all existing recordings is now taken into account. If this value can't be determined, the previous value of 25.75 MB/min is taken.
  • The disk usage is no longer automatically added to the title of the main and "Recordings" menus. This has always been a mekeshift solution and it is now up to the individual skin if, where and how it wants to display this information. A skin can use the new cVideoDiskUsage class to implement such a display. For compatibility, the default skins "Classic VDR", "ST:TNG Panels" and "Text mode" (i.e. curses) have been changed to behave like before. Other skins may want to display the disk usage in totally different ways.
  • A cOsdMenu can now handle skins that display different numbers of items in the various menu categories.
  • OSD and skin are now reinitialized after a plugin setup page has been confirmed, to have them react immediately in case any change to a plugin's setup parameter has an effect on the OSD.
  • Now making sure that the "small font" is never larger than the "osd font".
  • Within the "Recordings" menu, pressing the '0' key now toggles sorting between "by time" and "by name". The selected sort mode is stored separately for each folder (provided you have write access to that folder). If a folder is newly created by a repeating timer, the sort mode for that folder is initially set to "by time". Note that in previous versions the default sort order of the top level video directory was "by name" and all subdirectories were sorted "by time". Now the default sort order for all directories is "by name", so if you have an existing folder that shall be sorted "by time", press the '0' key once to achieve this.
  • The new setup option "Miscellaneous/Show channel names with source" can be used to turn on adding the source character to channel names whenever they are displayed.
  • Pressing the Play key during normal live viewing mode now opens the Recordings menu if there is no "last viewed" recording. The same behavior has been implemented for the Blue key in the main menu.
  • The new option "Setup/Replay/Progress display time" can be used to activate automatically displaying the progress display whenever replay of a recording is started.
Time Shifting
  • The new setup option "Recording/Pause key handling" can be used to define what happens if the Pause key on the remote control is pressed during live tv.
  • The new setup option "Recording/Delete timeshift recording" controls whether a timeshift recording is automatically deleted after viewing it. This obsoletes the DELTIMESHIFTREC patch. Note that the meaning of the values for this option is different from the DELTIMESHIFTREC patch: 0 means timeshift recordings are not automatically deleted (the default behavior as in previous versions), while 1 means to ask the user whether the recording shall be deleted.
  • The setup parameter "Recording/Instant rec. time (min)" can now be set to '0', which means to record only the currently running event.
  • When pausing live video, the current audio and subtitle tracks are now retained.
  • The "Edit timer" menu can now set the folder for the recording from a list of folders stored in "folders.conf".
  • The file name in the "Timers" menu now shows only the base name of the recording without the folder path (if any). Otherwise with long folder paths the actual recording name was not visible at all.
  • The new setup option "Folders in timer menu" controls whether the file names in the timer menu are shown with their full folder path.
  • The recording format is now TS (Transport Stream). Existing recordings in PES format can still be replayed and edited, but new recordings are done in TS. All code for recording in PES has been removed. The following changes were made to switch to TS recording format:
    • Since a TS needs to have a PAT/PMT, which requires the video stream type to be explicitly given, the format of the VPID field in the channels.conf file and the SVDRP commands NEWC/MODC/LSTC has been extended. The video stream type now follows the VPID and optional PPID, separated by an '=' sign.
    • The index file format has been changed to support file sizes of up to 1TB (previously 2GB), and up to 65535 separate files per recording (previously 255).
    • The recording file names are now of the form 00001.ts (previously 001.vdr).
    • The frame rate is now detected by looking at two subsequent PTS values. The "frames per second" is stored in the "info" file using the new tag F.
    • The directory name for a recording has been changed from YYYY-MM-DD-hh[.:]mm.pr.lt.rec (pr=priority, lt=lifetime) to YYYY-MM-DD-hh.mm.ch-ri.rec (ch=channel, ri=resumeId). Priority and Lifetime are now stored in the "info" file with the new tags P and L (if no such file exists, the maximum values are assumed by default, which avoids inadvertently deleting a recording if disk space is low). No longer storing Priority and Lifetime in the directory name avoids starting a new recording if one of these is changed in the timer and the recording is re-started for some reason. Instead of Priority and Lifetime, the directory name now contains the channel number from which the recording was made, and the "instance id" this instance of VDR. This avoids problems if several VDR instances record the same show on different channels, or even on the same channel. The '-' between channel number and resumeId prevents older versions of VDR from "seeing" these recordings, which makes sure they won't even try to replay them, or remove them in case the disk runs full.
    • The files "index", "info", "marks" and "resume" within a TS recording directory are now created without the ".vdr" extension.
    • The "resume" file is no longer a binary file, but contains tagged lines to be able to store additional information, like the selected audio or subtitle track.
    • cDvbPlayer::Goto() no longer appends a "sequence end code" to the data. If the output device needs this, it has to take care of it by itself.
  • The index file for TS recordings is now regenerated on-the-fly if a recording is replayed that has no index. This can also be used to re-create a broken index file by manually deleting the index file and then replaying the recording (at least until the index file has been generated).
  • The new command line options --edit and --genindex can be used to edit a recording or generate its index without actually starting the entire VDR.
  • The new command line options --filesize and --split can be used together with --edit to set the maximum video file size and turn on splitting edited files at the editing marks. These options must be given before --edit to have an effect.
  • The start time of an edited recording is now set to the time of the first editing mark. This obsoletes the CUTTIME patch.
  • An ongoing editing process is now canceled if either the original or the edited version of the recording is deleted from the Recordings menu.
  • If a frame position in the 'marks' file of a recording doesn't point to an I-frame, it will now be shifted towards the next I-frame (either up or down, whichever is closer).
  • Editing marks can now be placed directly on top of each other, in which case they simply mark a position, but have no effect on the actual cutting process.
  • When positioned at an offset where two (or more) editing marks are placed on top of each other, the '4' key moves the first one of them to the left, while the '6' key moves the last one of them to the right. The '7' and '9' key handle multiple marks at the same place as if it were one single mark.
  • The '7' and '9' keys now jump to the very beginning or end, respectively, of the recording, even if there is no mark set at that point.
  • The new option "Setup/Replay/Pause on mark set" can be used to activate automatically going into Pause mode if an editing mark is set during replay.
  • Timers no longer do any special "VFAT" handling to shorten directory names to 40 characters. When a string is used as a directory name for a recording, the maximum length of the directory path, as well as the individual directory names, is now limited to the values specified by the new command line option --dirnames (see man vdr(1) for details). For backwards compatibility the option --vfat is still available and has the same effect as --dirnames=250,40,1.
  • Improved cutting videos.
  • The SVDRP signon message now indicates the character encoding in use, as in "220 video SVDRP VideoDiskRecorder 1.7.1; Fri May 2 16:17:10 2008; ISO-8859-1". This may be useful for instance for external tools that provide EPG data, so that they can correctly encode the strings.
  • The SVDRP command PUTE now supports reading the EPG data from a given file.
  • After a CLRE command, no further EPG processing is now done for 10 seconds, so that data sent with subsequent PUTE commands doesn't interfere with data from the broadcasters.
  • If svdrphosts.conf contains only the address of the local host, the SVDRP port is opened only for the local host.
  • The default SVDRP port is now 6419 (registered with ICANN/IANA). Use '-p 2001' to switch back to the old port if necessary.
  • The SVDRP command HITK now accepts multiple keys (up to 31).
  • The SVDRP command LSTC now also accepts channel IDs.
  • The new SVDRP command UPDR can be used to trigger an update of the list of recordings.
  • The SVDRP command DELR now won't delete a recording that is currently being edited.
  • The SVDRP command LSTR now knows the additional parameter "path", which can be given to get the actual file name of a recording's directory.
  • The SVDRP command NEWT no longer checks whether a timer with the given data already exists.
  • Implemented handling the standard component descriptor for AC3 (stream=4). The previously used "Premiere pseudo standard" (stream=2, type=5) still works, but has apparently been wrongfully used by broadcasters from the beginning.
  • Improved fast-forward/-rewind for audio recordings. The actual data is now sent to the output device, so that it can be replayed and thus cause the proper delay. For pure audio recordings the audio is no longer muted in fast-forward/-rewind mode, so that some orientation regarding the position within the recording is possible.
  • The option "Setup/DVB/Use Dolby Digital" now only controls whether Dolby Digital tracks appear in the "Audio" menu. Dolby Digital is always recorded. This obsoletes the DOLBYINREC patch.
  • Added Lithuanian language texts.
  • Added Slovakian language texts.
  • Added Macedonian language texts.
  • Added support for languages that are written right-to-left. See INSTALL for information on how to turn this on.
  • Added Arabian language texts.
  • Added Serbian language texts.
  • Errors in config files no longer keep VDR from starting.
  • The new command line option -i can be used to set an "instance id", which will be used to distinguish recordings of the same broadcast made by different instances of VDR.
  • Implemented handling the "Parental Rating Descriptor". The 'classic', 'sttng' and 'curses' skins display the parental rating (if given) in their event displays. The epg.data file stores the parental rating using the tag character 'R'. IMPORTANT NOTE: if VDR doesn't display a parental rating, this does not necessarily mean that the given programme is suitable for all audiences!
  • Renamed 'runvdr' to 'runvdr.template' and no longer copying it to the BINDIR in 'make install'.
  • The new setup option "Miscellaneous/Channels wrap" controls whether the current channel wraps around the beginning or end of the channel list when zapping.
  • The files "commands.conf" and "reccmd.conf" can now contain nested lists of commands. See vdr.5 for information about the new file format. This obsoletes the CMDSUBMENU patch.
  • The new setup option "OSD/Number keys for characters" can be used to control whether the number keys can be used to enter characters in a text input field.
  • While replaying, the editing marks are now updated every 10 seconds.
  • Added generating a pkg-config file to the Makefile.
  • Removed the '.pl' suffix from all scripts.
  • The new setup option "DVB/Standard compliance" can be used to switch between different variations of the DVB standard. Currently there is "DVB" (for the original DVB standard) and "ANSI/SCTE", which is used to properly handle certain private stream types.
  • By default VDR is now built according to the FHS ("File system Hierarchy Standard"), and a plain "make" in the VDR source directory just builds everything, but doesn't copy it to ./PLUGINS/lib and ./locale any more. You can use a Make.config file (copied from Make.config.template) and set the parameter LCLBLD=1 to have everything built and installed under the VDR source tree (as was the default in previous versions). If you already have your own Make.config file, you may want to copy the new Make.config.template and adapt it to your needs. If you don't want VDR's data files to be spread around your system according to the FHS, you can set the parameter ONEDIR=1 (using Make.config) to have all files in one /video directory as before.
  • The script given to VDR with the '-r' option is now also called whenever a recording is deleted.
  • Synchronizing system time to the transponder time is now done using adjtime() in order to avoid discontinuities. If the time difference is more than 10 seconds, stime() is still used to do the initial sync.
  • Implemented scaling of SPU bitmaps.
  • WARNING: Using multiple disks to form one large video directory is deprecated and will be removed from VDR in a future version! Either use one of today's large terabyte disks (preferably with a backup disk in a RAID-1 array), or use something like "mhddfs".