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Discussion Starter #1
I have a Windows 7 Media Center machine set up as a New York-based machine, but I want to bring in the cable listings from my cable provider in Ontario. Analog cable only at the moment (no digital signal).

ATSC will be added soon too and I may drop Canadian cable. But in the meantime is there a way to hack the W7MC system or a variant of the PNear method that will get me the correct guide updates for the Canadian channels instead of the default US ones I'm getting?

Thank in advance! ;)
 

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Is there a reason why you have it set up as an American HTPC? If it's just to get the American OTA listings then it's easier to set it up as a Canadian HTPC for the cable listings and then use Peter Near's fantastic hacks to enable ATSC and US guide listings.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
"If it's just to get the American OTA listings "

Thank you,

No, there's more to it than that, I have a specific reason why the machine is set up as a US ZIP HTPC... :cool:

I believe that what's necessary is my getting my head around Peter's method and reversing it (or using another utility if it exists). I am in touch with Peter so I am hoping he can confirm a method.
 

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I'll respond in this thread rather than email so that everyone can benefit from the discussion.

Yes, you can basically reverse what I've done in the existing hack.

First, I insert an MXF file into the database that includes the guide ID that you want to download. On your machine that is set up for Canada, navigate in Media Center to the guide/about page and find the guide ID. In the hack package, you want to edit the file "CustomGuide.mxf" and replace the number 189833220 with the number that you got from your canadian media center.

Next, I set up a task that changes the region, updates the guide, then changes the region back. In the file "ImportATSCCustom.xml" make the following changes.
- In the first commend that runs, change "US" to "CA"
- In the second command that runs, change the number 189833220 to the number that you got from your Canadian media center.
- In the third command that runs, change "CA" to "US"

That should do it. Now run the batch file "USGuide.bat" and select custom, and it should set up everything for you. I haven't tested this yet, so consider these instructions approximate. You might need to modify some details.

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you Pete, I'll give it a try and report to the group for everyone's benefit. I'm just worried that if I download the listings for Canada I might not be able to go back to US listings and other benefits.... or would this be independent of what is already set up on the computer?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
One quick thing. Do I dispense with running ATSCCanada.zip (my US based machine already detects my ATSC/QAM tuners)?

For reference, changing the location on the US machine to a Canadian Postal Code DOES get the correct cable listings ID, and loses the US extras (like Internet TV), but applying my US ZIP back again on my US machine, recovered the US extras. Keep in mind that the machine was set up in the US from the get go, so it had all the appropriate US apps installed and working prior to my need to add on the Canadian Cable listings...

...now on to the experiment to add the additional guide (tomorrow).
 

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You are correct on both fronts, kind of:
- Set up the machine as primarily US. We'll only be switching the country temporarily early in the morning to allow the guide download. It won't impact the rest of your setup.
- You do not need to run EnableATSCandQAM.bat (assume that's what you meant) since ATSC is already enabled in the US.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yes, sorry I meant EnableATSCandQAM.bat above (which isn't needed in my scenario).

OK, here's my results after making the changes above.

I wanted to note for those who may follow this thread that I choose Option #7 in the USGuide.bat (not #8 - although I could use that to re-establish the Canadian Cable Guide if needed after a TV Setup).

It should also be noted, that I had trouble running these hacks in Win 7 in the past due to permissions, but I found the easiest way to accomplish it was to copy the ATSCCanada folder into the root system directory (C:/) and then open an "Elevated Command Prompt" by using the "Open as Administrator option when right clicking Start/Accessories/Command Prompt. The resulting Command window will say "Administrator: Command Prompt" in the window's title at the top.

Success!

I did have to go through my Cable Channels and change all of the Listings using "Edit Listings" in the Guide Set-up options to gather info from the correct Canadian Guide listings by hand (or I assume I could have used an optional guide accessory program like "Guide Tool" or "Big Screen EPG").

Scanning for Cable channels again through TV set-up will just substitute the US named channels from my US location, and setup for Antenna Analog channels brings in Canadian Station ID based on what could be received over air (analog) received in my US location, but they don't match up with the Canadian Cable listings.... so it's a manual adjustment that's needed. (Now let's see if it sticks.)

Thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yes, you can basically reverse what I've done in the existing hack.

First, I insert an MXF file into the database that includes the guide ID that you want to download. On your machine that is set up for Canada, navigate in Media Center to the guide/about page and find the guide ID. In the hack package, you want to edit the file "CustomGuide.mxf" and replace the number 189833220 with the number that you got from your canadian media center.

Next, I set up a task that changes the region, updates the guide, then changes the region back. In the file "ImportATSCCustom.xml" make the following changes.
- In the first commend that runs, change "US" to "CA"
- In the second command that runs, change the number 189833220 to the number that you got from your Canadian media center.
- In the third command that runs, change "CA" to "US"

That should do it. Now run the batch file "USGuide.bat" and select custom, and it should set up everything for you. I haven't tested this yet, so consider these instructions approximate. You might need to modify some details.

Pete
I have one more question.... Turns out that I can receive some Canadian QAM over my Cable line still (Digital Music and what not, i.e. repeats of my analog).

I have the unique Guide ID for the set-up with Cogeco QAM...

...what changes would I make to the script so that it downloads the channel info/guide for the QAM (i.e. Digital Cable) so I can access those listings to relate to the channels as well ? (As opposed to setting them all up by hand.)

i.e. is it possible to amend the hack so that it downloads several guides in addition the US OTA Guide that it does (in my reversed situation) by default?

Thank you for helping!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
One other quick thing....this is my second install of it all, my first mobo fizzled on me (Media Live DIVA, for the second time....)... so I am setting it up again, and the new Gigabyte board requires different Tuners...

In any case, my issue is that the first time around (before I discovered the Clear QAM channels), I'll swear that when I used GuideTool, I was able to see the Canadian Listing Lineups for Cogeco. Now all I see are the Terrestrial Analog Channel CAnadian channels (and the incorrect US CAble ones, plus the US OTA via my Buffalo ZIP set-up). Keeping in mind (for those new to the thread) that my machine is set up as a US machine for my US office, and I am using Peter's Hack in reverse (to put in the Canadian GUides, for COgeco Oakville Analog CAble and its Clear QAM channels - both of which I am having trouble acheiving now for some reason!).
 

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Sounds to me like the Canadian guide listings never got added to Media Center. Try running the USGuide.bat again, ensure you are running as administrator.

Pete
 

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To get the QAM listings, you just need to set up your media center one as "digital cable" and grab the guide ID from the about page. Use that instead of your analog guide ID (the digital guide has all the analog channels plus the digital).

There is no easy way to map QAM channels, you just have to guess based on the show that's currently on. You're likely to make mistakes, as some channels will be showing the same thing (WKBW, CFTO, CKCO for example all show Desperate Housewives at the same time, all simsubbed to use the Canadian feed, so it's difficult to know which is which).

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you,

I'm going to try the Cogeco QAM Digital Lineup, I did get the ID for that last night, but it's weird how my modified bat/xml files DID work before and now they're not (it's definitely not picking up and importing the Cogeco Cable Guide listings).

I may need to start again, so my questions are:

a) How do you back out the hack altogether?
b) Is there a way to add multiple Guides using this technique?

Thank you, you have been a great help and exceedingly responsive. (I have that Dire Straights song "Money For Nothing" going in my head "I want my MTV").
 

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Discussion Starter #15
[I am in the habit of answering my own questions given some time...]

Am I correct in assuming:

a) By deleting the nightly tasks, that reverses out the additional guides completely given a guide refresh by W7MC?
b) By adding tasks in USGUIDE.BAT you can put in multiple additional listings (i.e. one task for each of several Guide IDs?)

further to b) in my case where I'm in US locale and wanting to get Canadian Guides, I would amend the batch files so they switch to the CA locale (in the hack code), add the listing, and switch b ack to US locale (the default is the reverse), for each of the added guides. Is it possible to retain more than one additional channel listing guide refreshing nightly via this method?

Thank you!
 

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There are two steps that get executed:
1. Insert a new guideID into the database
2. Schedule a task to update that GuideID nightly

So, you'll need to do two things to remove it:
1. Do a new guide setup in the standard UI, that will reset the DB (or google for a guide reset tool)
2. Remove the scheduled tasks

Likewise, if you want to set up more than one:
1. Insert two guideIDs. Easiest way is to run USGuide.bat twice, once with each guideID you want to add
2. Add a guide update to the scheduled task. Easiest way is to add another execution item in the scheduled task that runs mcupdate.exe with the second guideID.

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Even though I am pretty careful I am not certain I have been able to get this to work (load two additional Canadian Guides, one Analog Cable for Cogeco Oakville, and one for Digital Cable Cogeco, Oakville, in addition to my default listings for Buffalo OTA).

[Deleted - see next post]

The other odd thing that is happening is that after I changed tuner cards (I needed to adjust which cards I was using) and cleared and re-did the Win7MC TV Setup, I was no longer able to use the "Auto Select" function (it gives an error saying it can't find the Tuner) and for some reason I detected fewer OTA channels (even though I didn't change the OTA tuner that I was using).

I'm wondering if I should redo my Win7 install from the ground up, or if it's that my script for updating the Channel Guides is wrong (I'm going to test for only one and not both Analog and Cable).

The other thing that I couldn't interpret from the Hack instructions is whether you are supposed to set up MEDIA CENTER first, then exit it and apply USGUIDE.BAT, or if you do it while it's running?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Sorry I made a mistake above. I was looking for the wrong Channel Names, and I got confused because "some" of the Canadian Listings got "assigned" to the wrong Channel automatically. Once I disabled those, I was able to find the correct Listings for the Cogeco Oakville Analog Cable channels.

The "extra" Cogeco Oakville Analog Channel listings have been properly included in the Win7 Media Center database, BUT the Canadian Channel Guides don't show up in GuideTool??

I am also not certain if the Cogeco Oakville Digital Channel listings have been incorporated in the database. How can I check / confirm that?


So, apart from not being able to determine IF there are listings for some of the Digital QAM channels I receive (which generally correspond to my basic Cogeco Analog Channels plus the Digital Music channels) my only remaining issues are:

1. Why Can't GuideTool see the Canadian Listings I added so that I can use that tool to do the channel re-assignments (which would be convenient), and

2. Why can't I use the "Auto Select" function (which speeds up the process).

I also have an odd issue where my OTA antenna WAS picking up some distant channels well the other night, but last night and today, no so strong a signal (and the antennae hadn't moved, and it was the same tuner - Asus phc3-150). But, admittedly the antenna isn't up very high yet. I just wanted to eliminate other variables (like drivers, guide issues, etc.) before tackling that one.

God forbid I change the tuner cards again. I only have so many slots right now, but I have an ATI 650 pcie, a Hauppage HVR-2250 and the Asus PHC3-150 (PCI) to choose from. (RIght now HVR-2250 is handling the Cable (Analog & QAM) and the PHC3-150 is handling Analog Cable and the ATSC OTA antennae.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
A few days into this I have some updates. I was only ever able to add ONE Canadian Guide Listing update to the native US one.

Perhaps I did it incorrectly, but I can't seem to add the local Oakville Cogeco Digital Cable listings ID (for Clear QAM), in addition to the Listings ID for the basic Analog Cable Channel guide ID. When I try to put them both in things get wonky. :confused:

I did have to line up and add all of the local Oakville Cogeco channels to Win7MC by hand (similar, I guess to having to add OTA channels in the original hack scenario).

Perhaps I can post my code here for review??
 
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