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How to Set Up a Ceton InfiniTV 6 ETH – 6-channel Cable TV Ethernet Tuner

This article will guide you through the steps necessary to set up and use the Ceton InfiniTV 6 ETH – 6-channel Cable TV Ethernet Tuner on your Windows network using Windows Media Center. This article was primarily written because my local cable provider is finally discontinuing all analog channels and moving to digital-only content on Dec. 1st, 2013, which will effectively remove a majority of channels that we record and watch.Ceton InfiniTV 6 ETH Tuner

Some time ago, I decided to stop paying my local cable provider some $29/month for cable box rental fees. I had one HD DVR box, and a “normal” box. The HD DVR box only had a 120GB hard drive inside, allowing for maybe 30 hours of HD recorded content. As you can imagine, this filled up quickly when recording sports events, especially NASCAR races.

The cost and limitations of the cable equipment led me to research how to build a good Home Theater PC (HTPC), which I outlined in the Build a Media Center PVR PC series. The Hauppauge! HVR-2250 PVR PCIe card used in that build to tune in TV stations provided by the local cable provider were capable of receiving both analog and digital broadcasts, but only unencrypted ATSC (over-the-air) digital signals.

While there were a fair number of digital channels available, they were limited in number and availability because the local cable provider only provided a handful of the local ones in unencrypted format over the cable. The other digital cable signals included in my local Extended Basic package (channels 2-80) could not be tuned in because they were encrypted. Contacting the cable provider about this revealed that I would need their equipment (and rental fees) to be able to watch the channels I already paid for! This was not the answer I wanted to hear, and I set out to find a way to legally watch the content I pay for, and at as low a cost as possible…

Using the steps in this article can help you set up a Digital TV tuner system that is shared among multiple PCs, and capable of watching and/or recording up to 6 simultaneous Digital Cable TV (even encrypted) channels. If you subscribe to premium channels such as HBO, Cinemax, Starz, Showtime, Encore or the Movie Channel, the content on these channels will be available for you to watch and possibly record without a cable box, and without the associated rental fees that go along with cable company leased equipment!

NOTE: If you want to watch encrypted, or Copy Once flagged content, you should know that you are only allowed to watch this content on the original computer/hardware used to record it. You CAN watch this content on another PC or even a television with the addition of a Media Center Extender. This is a hardware device, which often comes with a remote control, but they can be upwards of $200 each. Your best bet may be to search on eBay for them if sharing protected recordings over your network is what you want to do.

DISCLAIMER: Before you start, I must first warn you that the steps in this guide are intended for folks who are do-it-yourselfers. If you’re a plug-and-play person, you might want to solicit the help of Cartier Consulting, ask a technically-inclined friend to help, or hunker down and learn about how to do it yourself.

In addition, you will be on your own when it comes to support of any 3rd party equipment, which means that the cable company may support the CableCARD, but not the Ceton tuner, your router, your PC, or any other devices on your home network.

What you’ll need

You’ll need a fairly modern Windows 7 or 8 PC with a powerful graphics card and Windows Media Center installed. You also should have a dedicated, 500 GB+ hard drive for storing recorded content (2TB drives are very affordable these days), and a Dolby 5.1 surround-capable home theater or speaker system. These things are not mandatory, but if you’re going to invest time and money in the setup, they will help maximize your enjoyment for an extended time without needing to upgrade…

Hardware you’ll need:

Software you’ll need:

How to set up the Ceton InfiniTV 6 ETH device:

  1. First, connect your new Ceton tuner to your network as instructed in the included Quick Install Guide.
  2. Next, open the Ceton Diagnostics Tool and select the Update tab. If a firmware update is available, it will tell you, and you can click the Update button to apply it. Do not turn off your router, computer, or Ceton tuner during the update process!

    Ceton Diagnostics Tool Update

  3. Next, open Windows Media Center (WMC), and run the Extras > Extras Menu > Ceton InfiniTV Network Tuners Setup Wizard. Follow the prompts as instructed.
    Ceton InfiniTV Network Tuners Setup Wizard
  4. Now, navigate to Tasks > Settings > TV > Live TV > Setup Live TV tool in the WMC menu and follow the steps in the wizard.
    Live TV Setup

    Enter your Region, Zip Code, and agree to the Program Guide Terms of Service. WMC will then download your TV Setup Data, and examine your TV Signals. WMC should find your Ceton tuners and ask you which ones to assign. If you’re planning on setting up multiple PCs to share the tuner, divide up the tuners accordingly.

    After confirming your TV Signal Configuration, WMC should scan for channels. When it’s finished, open the TV > Guide and see what channels were found. You can customize the listed channels to your liking. I prefer to remove the channels I don’t pay for or have a subscription to, so the Guide is cleaner and only has content I am able to enjoy…

  5. Go back to the WMC menu to Tasks > Settings >TV > TV Signal > Set up TV Signal. You’ll be presented with the following list of necessary firewall rules required for the Ceton InfiniTV tuner, and WMC will prompt you to set up the following Firewall Rules for Windows Media Center. If you are using Windows Firewall, WMC can configure these settings automatically. You should make sure that UPnP is turned on in your router settings too:
    Name Protocol Direction Port Range
    RTP UDP IN/OUT 5001-5016
    SSDP UDP IN/OUT 1900
    RTSP TCP OUT 554
    UPnP TCP IN/OUT 2869
    WMDRM UDP OUT 5757-5772
  6. Next, update PlayReady through the Windows Media Center Tasks > Settings >TV > Set up PlayReady menu. If this fails, you can close WMC, open Task Manager, and stop the Windows Media Center Receiver and Windows Media Center Scheduler services. If you haven’t already, download/install the stand-alone installer for your Windows 7 or 8 version:
    1. x86 (32-bit): http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=bf43a3e0-b54b-4c73-9b11-dc1003a3b369
    2. x64 (64-bit): http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=8198be69-7109-4308-8ad6-369897b923d1

    If you have trouble with PlayReady updates not working still, check out this thread: http://www.thegreenbutton.tv/forums/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=275 . There are several ideas and steps there to try. One of them is running these commands, one at a time, in a CMD Prompt running as Administrator:

    net stop ehrecvr
    cd %programdata%\Microsoft\PlayReady
    del *.hds
    rmdir /s Cache
    cd %programdata%\Microsoft\ehome
    del *.hds
    rmdir /s Cache
    net start ehrecvr

    If you run these commands, then in WMC, navigate to Tasks > Settings > TV > TV Signal > Update PlayReady. It should search for a few moments then find and install an update. If this is successful, you’ll see a screen similar to this one:

    PlayReady Installation Complete

  7. If you have trouble with PlayReady and/or Digital Rights Management (DRM) settings, you can try the ResetDRM.exe tool found in the Resolution section of this Microsoft Support Article: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;976590 . In the Resolution section of this page, there is a link to a sample Windows Media Audio (.wma) music file that you can use to test your DRM settings. You may receive a propmt that you need to download a license file or additional settings for protected content playback. If you see this, allow it. If the file will play in WMC, your DRM is working properly. You can skip to Step 11.

    If the file won’t play, and ONLY continue on to running the ResetDRM.exe tool if the file won’t play!

  8. Reset machine DRM settings with ResetDRM.exe:Download the ResetDRM.exe tool from the “Software You’ll Need…” section above and save it to your Desktop.

    Important: This will reset your PlayReady settings, and will prevent any already saved protected recordings from playing.

    If you run this tool on Windows 7 SP1, you’ll need to modify the file’s properties in the Compatibility tab. Set it to Run this program in compatibility mode for: Select Windows 7 in the drop-down list and click OK.Now right-click on the ResetDRM.exe file and select Run as Administrator. Follow the prompts, and it will tell you when it has been installed. It will open a results log file for you to review. Look at the end of this log file to see if it succeeded or not:

    **** Begin CleanDRM *************************************************
    ** LogFile : C:\Users\Admin\AppData\Local\Temp\cleandrmlog.txt
    ** CleanDRM TimeStamp : 11/16/2013, 5:06:37 AM
    ** CleanDRM Version : 11.0.7238.0
    [Open data store for Exclusive]
    [Check license files]
    Checking C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM...
    [Check indiv files]
    [Check registry]
    Registry entry SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DRM\CLSID\{3DA165B6-CC41-11d2-BDC6-00C04F79EC6B}\ProgID not found - ignoring
    Registry entry SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DRM\CLSID\{3DA165B6-CC41-11d2-BDC6-00C04F79EC6B}\Version not found - ignoring
    Registry entry SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DRM\CLSID\{8D8763AB-E93B-4812-964E-F04E0008FD50}\Version not found - ignoring
    [Delete files]
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\drmv1.key : deleted
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\drmv1.bak : deleted
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\v3ks.bla : deleted
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\v3ks.sec : deleted
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\blackbox.bin : deleted
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\indivbox.key : deleted
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\IndivBox_64.key : deleted
    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\DRM\v2ksndv.bla : deleted
    [Clean registry]
    DataPath : deleted
    [Register DRM libraries]
    Register drmv2clt.dll: DllRegisterServer returned 0x00000000.
    **** CleanDRM succeeded ******************************************
    **** End CleanDRM ***************************************************

    Important: When the issue is resolved, you should delete the downloaded ResetDRM.exe tool to avoid running this tool again mistakenly after you have fixed this issue. After this, a reboot is suggested.

  9. Now, in WMC, try to play the sample protected WMA file again. It should now prompt you to download an update in order to play it, which you want to do. If the file plays after this update is installed, it indicates that your DRM settings are fixed.
  10. If ResetDRM.exe still doesn’t allow you to play DRM content, try visiting this page using Internet Explorer:
    http://drmlicense.one.microsoft.com/Indivsite/en/indivit.asp Click the Upgrade button in the page. This should upgrade your WMC and DRM security components and validate your license.
  11. In order to receive Digital Cable , premium access and HD channels with a CableCARD, you’ll also want to install Microsoft’s Digital Cable Advisor (DCA). You can find the DCA installer in the “Software You’ll Need…” section above.
  12. After the DCA installation completes, reboot your computer. Windows didn’t prompt for this step, but it is good practice so everything gets reset.
  13. Now, open Windows Media Center and navigate to the Extras Library. You’ll see a new icon that looks like a coax cable. This is the Digital Cable Advisor plug-in.
    Microsoft Digital Cable Advisor
    Select this, and follow the prompts to Setup TV Signal, and you should be able to select the defaults as you go through. You’ll be presented with some information that you’ll need to provide your cable company.

    NOTE: It is highly recommended that when activating a CableCARD, tell them you need to activate a TiVo box!

    You’ll need this information to activate your CableCARD, which is available in the included Ceton Diagnostics Tool that was installed with your Ceton software:

    – CableCARD ID
    – Host ID
    – Data ID

  14. While you are on the phone with your cable provider, it’s a good idea to keep the included Ceton Diagnostics Tool open to observe the CableCARD Status. This tool can be found in the Start menu after you install the Ceton software, and will periodically refresh itself to tell you what is still needed to receive encrypted digital channels on your new tuner. If you want to manually refresh, then click the Refresh button (two blue arrows). Here’s the Tool before activation and refresh:
    CetonDiagnosticTool CableCARD Info

    And here’s the tool showing the CableCARD properly set up and activated with the cable provider:
    Ceton Diagnostic Tool CableCARD Activated

  15. You should now be able to run the Tasks > Settings > TV > TV Signal > Set Up TV Signal tool to confirm your tuners, download your local guide data, and scan for channels. Don’t be alarmed if WMC tells you that it found NO channels. This is a bug in WMC because the tuner itself provides this information.
  16. Congratulations, at this point, you should be able to watch/record live TV!

Troubleshooting and Reference:

  1. On some channels, you may see a message similar to this:
    “Display driver error, The video playback device does not support playback of protected content.”

    There could be some different reasons for this:

    • The most common, is that you have display mirror drivers installed for LogMeIn, TeamViewer or similar. I have a triple monitor setup, and have used TeamViewer on all computers I set up for remote support. Unfortunately, the display mirror drivers tell WMC that there’s a way to copy video content out of the system, after it’s decrypted for display. This is against the DRM restrictions, so the content won’t play on any display except the primary one, if at all.

      I started playback of a protected recording on my primary monitor, then dragged the WMC window to one of the other monitors, and the playback would stop with the above error message. Dragging the window back to the primary monitor again resumed the playback automatically. This is a pain because I usually have the WMC window open on one of my secondary monitors while working. Uninstalling TeamViewer and rebooting fixed this issue.

      *** I’m still looking into how I can remotely access the computer without these issues. Remote Desktop may be an option, but I have qualms about using this over the Internet…

    • If you have used LogMeIn before, even if it is not installed, you can have the same issue. I found I had residual drivers for network printing, a still-active mirror driver, and some registry entries that needed to be removed to clean my system completely of these issues. Here’s one place I found an old LogMeIn entry that was still active and loading at start-up:
      Display Devices in the Windows Registry

      Here’s a somewhat older list of files and entries to remove when manually removing LogMeIn: http://www.securemost.com/articles/rm_logmein.htm.

      And a good post about them here: http://www.sevenforums.com/media-center/229605-display-driver-error-protected-content.html#post1923075.

      After searching for and deleting LogMeIn drivers from the c:\windows\system32\ and c:\windows\system32\drivers folders, I manually searched the registry to find all entries containing LogMeIn or RemotelyAnywhere and deleted them. Note that before making such edits, you should have a good backup of your registry first. You may have to edit key permissions to delete some of them. 😉

    • If you have multiple monitors set up and you see this message, try moving WMC to a different screen. This worked for me, even though my nVidia settings indicated that all my monitors and my GeForce GTX660 video card were HDCP-capable.

      Make sure that your video drivers are all up to date.

    UPDATE: I have since reinstalled TeamViewer and dug deep into the options to disable video sharing for meetings, etc. So far, DRM-protected content plays on any of my 3 monitors and has survived several reboots!

  2. There are some limitations of using a CableCARD setup, according to a brochure I received from my cable provider:

    • You cannot access Video On Demand (VOD) or Pay Per View (PPV) content using only this method. Most cable providers require their digital converter box for you to purchase content directly.

      While this may be true, I don’t spend extra money on VOD or PPV content, or I would have kept my cable boxes. This is not a feature that everyone is willing to do without, so decide for yourself, and do your homework regarding what your cable provider limitations are.

    • DVR capability is not included, but this is why you’re setting up your own WMC HTPC!
    • An interactive Programming Guide is not available. Somewhat true, unless you consider that WMC includes such functionality. WMC by default provides up to 2 weeks of programming guide data.

  3. You may also be interested in My Channel Logos XL, which can automatically find the graphical logos of your guide listings and display them on the Guide. It also can change the Guide layout to 3 hours at a time, show up to 12 channels per page, or even lets you create your own custom logos for use in the Guide. This is a “donate” program, that will cost you a $5 “donation” through PayPal to be able to download it.

  4. I found initially that when programs were recording, I often didn’t know because the red, circular WMC recording icon wasn’t being displayed in the System Tray. To fix this, and also provide more reliable recognition of the dedicated Ceton InfiniTV 6 ETH tuners assigned to a particular machine, here’s what you can do:

    1. Right-click on your My Computer icon and select Manage, or Click on Start > Run and type compmgmt.msc.
    2. Expand the Services and Applications tree, and select Services.
    3. Maximize the window to see more if you like. You need to find two entries under the Name column:
      • Windows Media Center Recording Service, and
      • Windows Media Center Scheduler Service
    4. For each of these services, right-click on each entry, select Properties, then select the Log On tab. You will likely find that Log on as: is set to This account: NETWORK SERVICE. Select the top radio button labelled Local System Account, click OK.
    5. Now, right-click on the service and select Restart Service. This will apply your changes.
    6. Make sure you repeat this for the other service and you should be all set. 😉

Good luck!!!

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