Mac OS X FireWire Channel Changer for EyeTV
EyeTV is a fantastic DVR for Mac OS X, but if you’re unlucky enough to need a set top box from your cable company, you’ll have to figure out how EyeTV is going to change channels when you’re not around. You could buy a separate infrared transmitter, but they are an additional cost & don’t always work properly.
Almost all digital cable boxes come with an active IEEE 1394 (FireWire) port. If your Mac also has FireWire, you’re in luck. I wrote a Mac OS X System Preference pane that listens to EyeTV channel change notifications and relays them to your cable box.
Download the free System Preference pane at: http://apparentlogic.com/channelchanger/download
This software has been working fine for me, but it still is brand new, so please use it at your own risk!
Double click the .zip file to expand. Double click the “Channel Changer.prefPane” file to install.
Channel Changer runs as a launchd service in the background, listening to EyeTV’s channel change commands.
It’s got all the normal good stuff like:
- Sparkle to keep your software up-to-date
- Log view to see what the Channel Changer service is doing in the background
- launchd to start automatically & run in the background when you reboot your computer
- An uninstall button in case you don’t need the software anymore
So far, I can only confirm it works with my Comcast-issued Motorola DCX-3200. However, it should work for most FireWire enabled cable boxes. Please drop me a line if you have any problems. Also, please let me know the make & model of your cable box if it works for you! Contact me at alex at fajkowski dotcom.
I added an option to that disables EyeTV from setting the same channel twice on your cable box. Depending on your cable company, sending the same channel change command may cause your box to toggle into a “Television Guide” mode that looks like this:
Finally, for some acknowledgements about software libraries used in “Channel Changer”.
Thanks to Andy Matuschak for Sparkle, a wonderful Mac OS X software update framework.
And thank you to Uli Kusterer for UKKQueue, a clean & powerful Cocoa wrapper for kqueue file change notifications in OS X.