TVPortal Guide

What is it?

TVPortal allows you to watch and manage  TV programs recorded on your Media Portal DVR on the Apple TV. It supports an EPG, custom channel groups, transcoding profiles for streaming and lets you watch both recorded and live tv.

Where is it available?

TVPortal is a free application for Apple’s tvOS and iOS devices. This is currently the 4th generation  Apple TV and newer and any iOS device running iOS9 and up.  It is available in the App Store .

Media Portal

Media portal is a free and open source program for windows that allows you to manage your media as well as record and watch live TV with a TV tuner.  You should install Media Portal 1 and configure your TV server using these instructions  . You should also own a TV tuner. These are cheap –$20 and up — and readily available at sites like NewEgg and Amazon. Any tuner that works with Media Portal  will work with TVPortal on the Apple TV.

MPExtended

After you have Media Portal installed.  You will need MPExtended. MPExtended allows you to access media portal from the web and also provides an API that TVPortal will use. You can use the latest stable release (0.5). However, the current beta (0.6) is very stable and I recommend that as it has recording deletion support.  At the end of installation, you will set a user and password to access MPExtended on the web as well as see the address of your server. Please note all of this as it is what you will use in TVPortal. 

The address you use will look something like this with different numbers in the IP address.

http://192.168.2.233:4322/mpextended

With a web browser, try going to that address and use your user name and password. You should be able to login and access your media.  We are now ready for TVPortal.

Configuring TVPortal

After you have downloaded the app from the app store.   Open it and switch to the final screen named Settings .

Simulator Screen Shot Jul 21, 2016, 1.09.10 AM

Enter the media portal server address from earlier.  Please don’t forget to include the http://  and the port after :  as well as mpextended.  Then enter the username and password.  Click the test connection button (not visible in the screenshot above) to verify that everything is working. YOU MUST HAVE A USERNAME AND PASSWORD.  If you do not have one, please set something, anything in  MPExtended.

Recordings

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TV Portal is now ready to use. Move over to the Recordings  screen. You should see it populate  with your most recent recordings in the middle as well as all shows recorded at the bottom.  As you watch programs, the top section will allow you to resume your three most recently watched programs.

Simulator Screen Shot Jul 23, 2016, 12.15.55 PM

Selecting a recording in the middle will take you to that specific episode and list other episodes at the bottom.

Selecting a show at the bottom will allow you to see the details for the oldest episode of the show as well as all others selectable below that.

Watching Recorded TV

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When watching TV,  you may tap the play/pause button or click the remote to pause/resume playback.  Swiping forward will seek 30 seconds and backwards will go back 10 seconds. I chose this as being more ideal for skipping commercials.  I will add additional options in the future.  There is a preview image on the right side that will indicate where in the video the player is.  The Progress bar and time indicate who far into the recording it is.

Scheduled Recordings

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The Scheduled Recordings screen will show what is scheduled to record today as well as  all shows scheduled to record.   It will also show what channel and what the frequency of the recording is.  You may scroll up and down but there is no way to edit this in the app yet.