General Satellite Terminology

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Ok. lets have a go at trying to explain this in laymen terms. This may not be 100% accurate, but just my interpretation.

Your sat box uses a Linux operating system. A bit like your computer uses windows.

Enigma2 is an interface specifically made for these boxes. It is basically a bunch of separate components based on python programming language that can be referenced to build bigger components.

Image...Is a collective term for your enigma2 operating system. So you have Linux operating system, from that you have your enigma2 components, from that you have various image builds. There are several teams that build on the original enigma2 code, adding to it, tweaking it, amending it, personalising it. The 2 most common ones in the UK are openvix and openatv. Others include openspa, openpli, opendroid, hdfreaks.

Most of these teams images are about 90% the same as they are all based on the oe-alliance code, which is the central hub for all these builds. Things that will differ are menu structure and also which plugins are included by default. The team images all do roughly exactly the same thing. It's all down to personal preference which one you prefer. Neither is better or worse than the other. Try both, make your decision.

OpenATV was originally preferred on zgemma as it was officially supported and offered the ability to do a software update. Vix doesn't officially support zgemma due to a historical argument, therefore patched images were used to enable a vix image to work on zgemma. This meant software updates were not possible and the only way to update your vix software was to reflash with a new up to date image. This seems to be rectified now as doing a software update on openvix now just hides the fact it's a zgemma.

Backup Image - A backup image is a clone of your setup. This includes, your image, your line, your skin, your settings, etc. This can be used to reflash your box in case anything goes wrong with it without the need to personalise everything from scratch again. These boxes do crash now and again. Having your own backup image is highly recommended.

Pre made Backup Image - This is just somebody elses backup image. They have done all the hard work for you by setting up their box with all the correct settings, skins, plugins etc. Reflash your box with one of these images and you are ready to go. No work is required by you other than entering your line.

Plugins - These are add-ons (similar to apps on a mobile phone) which offer additional functionality to the box.

Bouquets - This is just a folder that has a group of related channels. For instance a sports Bouquet. Originally you had to create these yourself, but nearly everyone now just uses a 3rd party plugin to automate this. (see below)

Auto Bouquets - There are 2 popular plugins, that automatically scans your satellite for channels and puts them in relevant bouquets. AutobouquetsMaker and AutoBouquets E2. Autobouquetsmaker is probably the most popular now. Once this is configured, this will automatically keep your list update on a regular basis and no need to manual amend any files like on old boxes. These plugins will use the same channel numbering as official satellite channel providers.

Skin - these are just the graphics for your box and control how your box looks and feels. Every image comes with a default skin. OpenAtv also comes with an additional skin called Metrix that is very customisable. The community have developed additional skins to give a look and feel of popular satellite providers. Fraggles skin, blue hd, red hd, and my very own brand new slyk1hd are example of these.

TimeShift - Depending on whether you have 1 or 2 cables going into your box, this allows you to pause, rewind, fast forward live tv.

Recording - If you 2 cables in your box you have the ability to record one channel and watch another. In theory you can record multiple channels if they are on the same transponder.

FTA - Free to air channels. Your box by default is able to pick up and play any free to air channel on the satellite. Note this is not freeview, but more like freesat.

Scrambled Channels - Your box can only pick up free to air channels unless you pay a 3rd party provider to unscramble your channels. For this you need to purchase a line from a server. This works by requesting an unscramble code every few seconds via an internet connection. Your box contacts the server, the server replies with the unscrambled code. These are only very small file sizes, but a a stable internet connection is required. A speed of around 4mb is sufficient.

Line - Referred to as gifts on auction sites. These give access to the server mentioned above. They can be bought for varying lengths of time. Monthly, 3 months, 6 months, 12 months. There is no guarantee anyone you get a line off will be around in the future, so it is highly recommend to buy for only a shorter period of time. 1 year and 2 year subs are very likely to disappear before the term is up.

SoftCam Software - The softcam software is needed to manage and process your line. There are 3 main plugins used for this. CCCam, Mgcamd and Oscams. CCCam is the easiest to use, mgcamd offers more options and should cache your line for faster zapping, Oscams it tended to be used by the experienced. All are slightly different but which ever line you get can be used in any of these softcam plugins with a slight amendment. Search the forum for more detailed instructions on each.

Clines and Nlines - These are just 2 different protocols for your line. It is again down to personal preference. Which is better - that is entirely based on how good your server is. Can I explain it better than that... no ;)

Nline is usually used for Newcamd
Cline is usually for CCcam.
Each Cline and Nline has 4 basic parts.


Nline usually finishes with a DED KEY which is 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 which can be changed

SD/HD - Sly have blocked HD on satellite receivers. Therefore most of the channels you get will be SD. Other providers like Free to Air and BT channels are still available in HD. HD is still available via cable.

Reflash - reload a new or a backup image onto your box. if you reflash your box, you will lose your line. Therefore keep a copy/backup of your line at all times. Especially if your box came with a line already loaded. Find your line details and make a copy.

Bootloop - Most enigma2 boxes are prone to these. Basically an error on your box can cause your box to crash and in some circumstance this results in a bootloop. The box just keeps booting over and over. The only concrete way to fix this is to reflash your box. (with that backup image you created earlier ;). Tryng to factory reset your box can cause a bootloop. Installing a broken plugin may cause a bootloop. Pressing too many buttons at once and being impatient can crash your box. A dodgy software update can crash your box.

EPG - Electronic programming guide. There are 2 popular plugins used to automatically keep your epg populated. OpenVix users tend to use crossepg, this is a bit buggy on openatv, so openatv users tend to use xmltvimporter with rytec addon. Once setup this automatically updates every night. Again no need to manually update unless the feeds are down, or you have recently done a full reboot and the automatic update hasn't kicked in.

Picons - These are channels logos which appear next to the channel name. These can be sourced via the plugins menu or by third party means. Channel positions change all the time, so picon files constantly need updating if there is a channel switch. Picons live at /hdd/picon on your box.

FTP - File Transfer Protocol. To transfer external files over to your zgemma, you need some sort of ftp software. Filezilla is free and easy to use. To access your zgemma, you need to find your zgemmas IP address. Menu... Information... Network... Enter this into your ftp software, username:root, password: [leave blank]

Settings - nearly every screen has an individual settings page. These can be accessed via the main menus, alternatively press the menu button on your remote on a particular screen will bring up the settings for that page if available.

Multi functional buttons - lots of your buttons on your remote have a dual pupose. They can be either pressed once or long pressed. An example of this is the coloured buttons or epg button. Pressing the help button on a particular screen will give you all the button options available on that particular screen. (note depending what build you are using the remote control graphic and help arrows might be out of sync)

That will do for now....
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