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The General section is divided into the tabs Application, Scan, and Software Encoders. It offers a few settings that affect the whole TV-Server.


Access the General settings from the Navigation panel on the left in TV-Server Configuration.

Application Tab

In this tab you can set the priority that the TV service uses as well as a delay for TV card detection.

TVService priority

This setting determines the windows scheduling priority that the MediaPortal TV Server service will be given. If your TV-Server also runs other applications and  you experience lags or stuttering while watching TV, you can give the TV service higher priority so that it receives more processor power than other applications.

The following scheduling priorities are possible:

  • Realtime
  • High
  • Above Normal
  • Normal
  • Below Normal
  • Idle

Realtime gives the most computing power to the TV service and Idle gives the least.

Log Level

The log level of the TV-Server log files can be set in same fashion as the log verbosity of the MediaPortal log files.

The levels are:

  • Error
  • Warning
  • Information
  • Debug

Default log level is set to Debug during development and Pre-Releases and Information for Final releases.

After selecting the desired log level you will be informed that a manual restart of the _TVService _is needed before the log level is changed.

A manual restart of the _TVService _can either be done in the TV-Server Configuration *window (*Stop Service/Start ServiceManual Control >  button), in the Windows services Management Console Snap-in or by restarting the PC where TV-Server is installed.

Delay for TV card detection

Some cards (for example, the Hauppauge Nova-T 500) are known to take a long time to reinitialize after resuming from standby or hibernate. This can lead to trouble if MediaPortal tries to access a TV card that isn't yet fully initialized. In such cases you can use this option to delay detection of TV cards until they have finished initializing.

Scan Tab

On this tab you can amend the timeout values used for various stages of channel scanning and tuning. It is recommended to leave these settings at their default values unless you are having scanning or tuning issues that you suspect are caused by TV Server giving up too quickly. For example, it has been suggested in the forums that it may help to increase the SDT/VCT timeout if you are getting hexidecimal encoded names (characters 0-9 and A-F) for the channels found during scanning. Increasing that timeout gives the scanning process more time to get the correct channel information.
PAT Stands for Program Association Table. In the simplest possible terms, the PAT lists all available programs (channels) on a transponder or multiplex. Technically the PAT lists PIDs for all PMTs in the stream. TS Packets containing PAT information always have PID 0x0.

CAT Stands for Conditional Access Table. The CAT contains information about all conditional access systems (for example Irdeto, Nagravision, PowerVu etc.) in use on a transponder or multiplex.


Stands for Program Map Table. This table contains detailed information about programs (channels). There is a single program map with its own unique PID for each program in the PAT. Program maps describe the PIDs that contain the relevant elementary streams for a program. For example, if a program contains an MPEG-2 video stream, the program map table will list its PID, describe it as a video stream, and specify the type of video that it contains (in this case, MPEG-2). The PMT may also contain additional descriptors that provide metadata for its constituent streams.


SDT stands for Service Description Table. The SDT contains the names and types of programming available on each channel. This information is combined with information from the Time and Date Table (TDT) and used to build the electronic program guide.
VCT stands for the Virtual Channel Table. The content of the virtual channel table is the ties everything together. It lists each channel on the entire DCII system across multiple satellites or transponders and contains an index to the appropriate TDT, SDT, MMT and CDT tables so that the receiver can select the correct channel. If the channel is digital, the VCT also contains the MPEG-2 Program Number (although it's called Service Number in Motorola parlance) so the receiver can process the MPEG-2 PAT and PMT to actually display the program Analog Timeout when scanning for analog channels. This time defines how long TvServer tries to retrieve the channel name from teletext while scanning for channels.

Linkage Scanner

Some Providers (for example, Premiere in Germany) have so called "Portal channels". A portal channel is a named channel that provides access to a list of services (for example, a channel that offers different movies on a pay per view basis). The movies are broadcast on different channels which don't have names. This feature grabs the correct linked channels for the portal and makes them available via the context menu. Only enable this feature if you have access to providers that offer this feature. It is unchecked (disabled) by default.

Software Encoders Tab


On this tab you can change the priorities of the audio and video encoders for analog cards. This is a general priority and is used for all analog cards that need such an encoder. An encoder converts an analog video or audio signal into MPEG-2 video or audio streams. Those are required for TV-Server in order to support timeshifting, recording for analog cards.

There is a section for each encoder type (Video and Audio). Both lists can define their priorities separately. A priority of "1" means that TV-Server will try this encoder at first and the one with priority "2" and so on. The priority can be changed by using the "Up" and "Down" buttons in the desired section.

In front of each row you can see if the encoder is installed or not on your system. So if you are using an analog card without a hardware encoder you can check here if a supported software encoder is installed. If no encoder is installed and your card has no hardware encoder, than have a look here for more information: Software Encoding Card Setup. It is not possible to enter additional encoders in this screen.

It is recommend to assign priority "1" to the encoder which is installed and belongs to your card. This will increase startup speed of the card and increases the possibility that the encoder works. Some analog cards are only working with a specific encoder.

Note: Combined video and audio like the "Hauppauge MCE encoder" are not supported by TV-Server.

For advanced users:

It is possible to add additional encoder directly to the database (db table: 'softwareencoder'). Each encoder needs a unique ID and a corresponding priority which is unique for each type. Video encoders have type = 0 and audio encoders have type = 1. Please be aware that the standard list of encoders is only tested and supported by the Team.




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