Originally Posted by localuser
Next to the antennae cans is a serial ftdi interface. Has anyone attached an ftdi connector to their computer to see what debug data and menu options are available via that interface yet? I am wondering if it is worth my effort to try or not. Here is a picture of the underside of the board with the pinouts labeled.
This is the ch 3/4 version, but I confirmed that both boards have the interface in a similar location.
I plan to connect my serial adapter to this box at some point in the near future for testing purposes.
I couldn't help noticing the labeled pinout for USB there on the bottom. Is this the front USB port, or is this a second, unpopulated USB port, which might possibly be used to attach another device?
My dream for this device would be to get kernel source and add networking support, but it will probably never happen.
For now, I have my hard drive connected to a Monster OTG Cloud device, which when powered off acts as a USB hub. Providing 1 micro SD card slot, 1 full sized SD card slot, and 1 USB port. All of these are available to the stb3500ii ch 3/4 version as disks.
When I flip the Monster OTG Cloud power switch on, it disables the USB hub function, but turns on Wi-Fi and acts both as a NAS and a Wi-Fi repeater. So then I can connect to the Wi-Fi on the OTG and am able to connect to the various disks via samba, http, ftp, etc. Allowing me to steam the .mts videos from the hard drive to anywhere in my house and I can use android tv box with XBMC to playback my recorded tv shows wirelessly in another room. I could just as easily use a pc, my phone, or any other device which can playback mts encoded filestreams.
Since the Monster OTG Cloud also works as a wireless repeater I can still maintain an internet connection at the same time, although the connection speed to internet is significantly reduced(i have 15mb down, 1.5-2mb up cable connection and download speed through OTG drops down to about 6mb/s).
The Monster OTG stays powered on through stb3500ii USB port, but it also has it's own battery. It's not a perfect setup, but the next best thing to having live tv streamed to my other devices. I wish that the OTG would work as USB hub and fileshare at the same time so that I could stream the output from time shift mode to watch live tv. It does run Linux, so possibly I could change this function to make it work.
I was so going that these pvr boxes ran Linux, but I think there is a good chance that they use MIPS' MEOS real-time operating system instead. MEOS is open source but not GPL and I highly doubt it requires the release of source code.
I ran the .bin firmware file from stb3500ii through a decompiler last night and didn't find out all that much. I ended up with a ton of MIPS assembly code. I was able to learn that the hardware operates in big endian mode. Also, much of the code defines itself to be 16 bit, which I would assume is the compressed MIPS 16e ASE, used to save memory space, but function on par with MIPS 32(similar to to ARM Thumb instructions).
I think it's a great product for the price and am having fun playing with it. It's really nice to have the ability to stream my recorded shows at the flick of a switch.