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Vu+ Duo4k is STB or media player? Some video files are not working anymore!?

I recently acquired top of the line Vu+ satellite receiver. Before that I was struggling with Duo2 which was partly damaged, it was also randomly freezing which indicated motherboard problem.

I then decided for Duo4k which has ARM type of CPU and should have superior media support. I was wrong. There is not much info on English forums (more info available on German ones – here for example) because receiver is quite new and also not cheap. Not a popular choice by SAT and IPTV enthusiasts.

Here is table from vuplus-support.org forum which indicates what was changed between BCM chipsets regarding video codec support (ARM64 is the one which is used by Duo4k):

As you can see, latest BCM chipset used in Duo4k does not support old codecs. More information about these codecs:

  • VC1: Designed for Windows Media Video 9 from Microsoft 2003
  • WMV and WMA are Microsoft implementations of VC1
  • MPEG-4 Part 2: developed from 1999, used in DIVX, XVID, QuickTime and others, h263 compatible.
  • VP6: developed in 2003, is mainly used in Flash video.
  • VP8: developed around 2008 as successor of VP7.
  • SPARK: h263 implementation, developed around 2002.

The most problematic is lack of old DIVX/XVID support, because there are many older movies and especially series which are only available in this format (.avi container). Avi container can still work fine, but it depends on codec used. You can also have .mkv files that wont work properly!

What about audio support? Well, even here there are problems. DTS downmix for example doesnt work. I do not know about DTS passthrough because I only use stereo speakers. This is the biggest problem regarding audio support, because DTS is widely available. There might be other not supported audio codecs.

What is the conclusion? Price cutting of Broadcom sadly affected our newest ARM based Vu+ receivers. At the end of the day, these receivers are really only STBs and not media players. It is just a bonus and for better support you need to use dedicated media player.


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Vu+ Duo2 becomes slow or stuck in standby, is there a solution?

I havent post in a long time. Too much real life work and nothing interesting on the sat part. Well there are new 4k receiver but only Vu+4 cought my eye recently. Lets continue with the main story of my post. Vu+ does have problems with quality of capacitors that are used in Vu+ receivers. I have hoped that they learned the lesson with Vu+ Duo but apparantly the same is happening with 2nd version.
My Duo2 does not experience signs of capacitors dying but I do have dead LAN and HDMI ports. HDMI went dead on me for the 2nd time 🙁 This is called bad luck!

Well, there is an user on the web that is apparantly repairing Duo2 receivers. Check out his website. Apparently you can get your Duo2 fixed by sending receiver to him. I havent done this myself, so it is on your own risk. There is also probability that you wont receive any response from him. Try it anyway.

I will probably buy Vu+ Duo 4k edition due to interesting new capabilities like FBC support on DVB-C tuner. This means 8 different channels on different frequencies with only 1 tuner. Finally someting useful from E2 receiver.

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How to manually create SWAP file in Enigma 2

Here is short tutorial about creating swap file for your older E2 receiver with small or low memory. I assume you already know how to connect to your receiver using telnet. Lets proceed.

Copy and paste these commands:

… First: …
dd if=/dev/zero of=/media/hdd/swapfile bs=1024 count=524288
… then …
mkswap /media/hdd/swapfile
… then …
swapon /media/hdd/swapfile
… and then …
vi /etc/fstab
… add: …
/media/hdd/swapfile swap swap defaults 0 0

Swap should be created on your hdd. If you want to use USB (better), then just replace hdd with usb. If you get confused with vi text editor, you can just open fstab file using FTP and add required line. Do not forget so save properly.

This should be it. Lets test is now 😉

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Dreambox and OpenPLi images

Recently new website emerged where you can get unofficial images for newer Dreamboxes. OpenPLi does support older models, but newer ones does not support. Here is maybe already incomplete list of newer models:

DM 900 ultraHD

DM 7080HD

DM 520HD

DM 520/525HD

Here is link: http://www.pli-images.net/index.php

I do not approve such unofficial images but some might be happy to use OpenPLi on newer machines. If website will go offline, please do not spam on official forum, as there will be no help due to using unofficial images. I warned you!

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Experimental OpenPLi based images

OpenPLi officially does not have experimental branch, even though you could say that their GitHub repository is experimental as it is daily updated and also images are created daily. But in reality OpenPLi repository is not experimental as its staff does not include all the latest improvements that are being made available by users of this image. Official experimental branch will be available soon.

One of such improvements that everyone is waiting for is gstreamer. OpenPLi still uses very old version of gstreamer – v0.10. It “works” but it is obsolete piece of code that already reached version 1.8. Latest development offers lots of improvements especially with streaming.

There are two experimental images based on OpenPLi that you can try:

  1. SatDreamGr images – support for Dreambox, ET, Vu+, Ixuss and XP receivers
  2. Builds from MastaG – http://forums.openpli.org/topic/40872-unofficial-pli-4-gstreamer-1x-images-2016-03/

There are some other improvements included, for example here is changelog from latest MastaG images:
– Replaced the official bootlogo with the World Press Photo of 2015:
“Hope for a New Life” by Warren Richardson.
– Resynced with master and taapat’s oe-core.
– Gstreamer snapshot upgraded to 1.7.90, except for spark/spark7162 where I ship version 1.6.3.
Reason for this was the playbin issue which I couldn’t solve: http://forums.openpl…ndpost&p=534693
– FFMpeg upgraded to 3.0 (thx to Taapat for the recipes).
gstreamer1.0-libav is now compiled against a reduced version of ffmpeg, leaving more free space.
– Reworked the Dreambox BSP thx to Captain and gjstroom for their work in OE-A.
Hopefully the DM800Se V2, DM7020HD V2 and DM500HD V2 are now working again.
If you have such receiver, please test and report back.
– Added libluray and the blurayplayer plugin by Taapat.
– Moved EMC plugin back to the feeds.
– Added Media-button support in keymap.xml thx to .:MarcinO:.
– Added wifi support for Atemio Nemesis thx to .:MarcinO:.
– Applied patch to servicemp3.cpp from mx3L to fix possible GSOD on switching audio tracks.
– Applied patch to servicemp3.cpp from mx3L for faster IPTV zapping.
– Applied patch to the dvbmediasink from mx3L to fix a possible freeze when seeking mp4 files.
See: http://forums.openpl…ndpost&p=534766
Please test and report back for me.
– Applied the linux 2.6.18 vermagic removal patch.
You should be able to load any kernel module on the DM800 again (use at your own risk).
– Created images for X Solo Mini 3 and Zgemma Star i55.
– Created new libeplayer builds for spark/spark7162 based on ffmpeg 3.0 thx to Taapat.
– Hopefully fixed CrossEPG (untested).
– Applied christophecvr’s patch for setting the debug level.
See: http://forums.openpl…ndpost&p=530210
You can find the option in the bottom at Menu -> Settings -> User-interface.
Setting it to “0” will disable eDebug’s completely and will give you smoother playback of IPTV streams on slower receivers.

You can see that there are many improvements, not only gstreamer. The most interesting one is the debug level patch. If you set debug level to 0, you finally get normal receiver behavior when playing video files with external subtitles. With normal OpenPLi you get annoying spinners when fast forwarding video with external subtitles.

Hope you will find this article useful.

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