Two home setup

I recently set up Channels DVR at house #1 with a HDHomeRun Dual connected to OTA antenna and all is working well with Apple TV devices at house #1.

Just arrived at house #2 today which also has Apple TV devices and a HDHomeRun Dual which is connected to Mediacom cable. No DVR setup at house #2. From house #2, I can access the DVR and live channels at house #1 with no issues. However, if I selected a channel from the guide which is coming from house #2 tuner, I get an error message of "Tuner Not Available".

I can scan for the tuner and find it, I can scan for channels on it and find channels and I can use the HDHomeRun iOS app to watch channels on it so I don't think there is any issue with the HDHomeRun tuner. The issues seems to be my Channels setup.

Any ideas?


Enabled tuner sharing?

I am a bit confused by most of what you said, but 2 questions immediately spring to mind:

You say that you have a Dual connected to cable

You say that, with house #2, you have no DVR setup...why would you expect that tuner (which you say is connected to cable service) to work with Channels, if you say you don't have it set up with Channels?

I think HDHomeRun tuners are able to tune unencrypted channels from some cable providers as well, so that may be what he’s doing.

I think what’s happening here is a mixed environment. He wants to be able to use the remote DVR source at the same time he is tuning a local HDHR as well. That would likely have to be direct, rather than through the DVR server, which is why the prior member asked whether he has tuner sharing enabled on the client. It’s a good question. I honestly don’t know how Channels behaves in a hybrid situation like this.

Macnbaish is correct. At house 2, I’m in a hybrid situation. Our HOA has an agreement with Mediacom where cable is unencrypted and it has worked fine with HDHomeRun and the Channels app on Apple TV. House 1 has worked fine with OTA and Channels app on Apple TV.

The addition of Channels DVR at house 1 is what has changed. I finally gave up on Tablo solving the remote access issue for Apple TV and decided to give Channels DVR a try. So far it works great from both houses. The new issue is what I described above.

I’m not sure tuner sharing applies in this situation?

Have you ever set up house #2's HDHR with house #1's Channels DVR? I'm pretty sure you would have to have a VPN between the houses to make that happen.

I don't think it is unusual to utilize a single Channels DVR server in multiple locations, but it is less usual to have tuners from multiple locations use a single Channels DVR server. Not that it can't be done, but it would need a little more setup, such as the VPN.

If all equipment (tuners and server) are local to one another, it is pretty straight forward to share out from that central hub.

Are you expecting Channels DVR to see your HDHR tuner, in house #2, and integrate those channels into the guide? Unless you have taken the steps to set it up to work with the Channels DVR server, at house #1, that isn't going to happen.

So, I read your original post a little closer and I think I understand one aspect I did not, before.

At house #2, you were originally only using the Channels app...not Channels DVR.

So, it makes better sense, to me, that it worked before.

I have never used the standalone app. Does the standalone app start working with the DVR server, once the server is installed, or do you have to get a different app? If there are two apps, can they both run on the same ATV?

That is correct - house 2 had no DVR - just Channels app talking to HDHomeRun which is connected to unencrypted Mediacom. All worked well including guide, etc. with that setup. My understanding is that both apps are identical. So now house 2 also has a remote connection to Channels DVR at house 1 and it works great. Can play recorded content and live content without any issues. The guide at house 2 shows channels from both connections but if I select a Mediacom channel, I get Tuner Not Available. Nothing else is running that might be using both tuners on the house 2 HDHomeRun.

House 1 setup is currently perfect - I'm not trying to connect to the HDHomeRun at house 2 from house 1. What I'm trying to accomplish is while we are at house 2 is to be able to watch content from house 1 (which works fine now for recorded and live content) AND live content from the tuner in house 2 since the Mediacom connection has channels I don't have access to otherwise. The second part is what isn't working.

First world problems...

For iOS/iPadOS, there is only a single app. All other platforms (including tvOS/Apple TV) have 2:

  • Channels Live TV – This is the paid app that allows you to use a local HDHR tuner without a DVR server
  • Channels DVR – This is the free app that requires a DVR server connection to function, but is otherwise identical to the former

Submit diagnostics from the app after getting the tuner error

Tried the Channels DVR app on Apple TV and got same error. Diagnostics submitted.

Diagnostics were submitted.

I tried a little experiment last night - second Apple TV in house 2 had not been connected to Channels DVR in house 1. Before connecting it, I verified that I could watch channels from the HDHomeRun which is located here in house 2 and connected to unencrypted Mediacom. It worked fine as expected. After remote connecting to Channels DVR in house 1 (which works great!), I could no longer access channels coming from the HDHomeRun here in house 2. Tuner Not Available.


I am not 100% sure how the magic works with server, but this sounds like it makes sense. Maybe.
As long as you are not connected to the server in House #1, the app works fine with the HDHR in house #2, with the ATV in House #2.

When you hook up to house #1 is when the issue starts and it sounds like the reason might be because there is no connection from House #2 back to House #1 for the server to feed a 'signal' back to House #2.

At House #2, you are remotely connecting to House #1 via the Channels service and it can feed you the 'signal' for the HDHR that is at House #1, but that HDHR is local to that server, so it has access to serve out live channels from that local HDHR. It is just like it would be if I am outside my house and use the service to access my home's Channels DVR server.

But, that server, at House #1, does not have local access to the HDHR at House #2, so it cannot serve out any channel from House #2's HDHR.

You only had the standalone app working at House #2, before this, and it works with what is local to it, so it works fine with the local HDHR.

Once you connected to the Channels DVR service at House #1, everything has to go through that server and the HDHR at House #2 is not local...or set up with the DVR service at House #1.
So, now I kind of go back to my original line of sounds like you need a VPN setup between the houses, to allow the HDHR at House #2 to be local to the server at House #1. House #1 server does not need the VPN to serve out the channels, but it needs it to have a local connection to use the House #2 tuners...which is why you are getting the no tuner error...the server cannot see that tuner...even if the app can see it, locally, the server cannot see it locally.

I will let the devs say whether I am way off base, but it makes sense to me.

I think I'm following what you're talking about.
Tried explaining this in another post never replied to. TVE channels not displaying in On Now or Guide when filtered to Favorites So I found another reason not to use the iOS client.

I have two Channels DVR's at House#1.
House#1 DVR1 only has a source of HDHR Prime.
House#1 DVR2 only has a source of TVE.

The problem is the client device can see the local HDHR's even if they aren't enabled in the DVR being connected to.

So I'm at house#1 and I connect my iOS client to DVR2 (using local at home with the IP of DVR2) which only sources TVE, the client still sees the local HDHR tuner, since I think that's the way Channels started. It doesn't have to use a DVR to see HDHR devices that are local to it, but does for TVE or M3U sources.

Of course using remote access with two servers complicates things.

I am not set up with 2 servers at same locale...when you are remote, do you use different ports and port forwarding to distinguish or does the Channels DVR service allow you to pick and choose which server you want, remotely?

Then perhaps we're talking about different things.

I don't use remote access, only have two Channels DVR servers at the same house#1 location that I choose to connect to locally in my client devices by Connect at home via IP address of the servers.

I was trying to point out that any Channels client will see a local network HDHR tuner, whether or not you have any local or remote Channels DVR Server and if you do, whether or not it's a source device for it.

I gave up and worked around it since nobody replied and obviously by using two servers we're unique.

No, you are good and we are talking about the same thing. I edited my last post to more clearly convey that I was saying that I don't personally have 2 servers at home. And then I was replying to your last sentence about using remote access with two servers being complicated. I thought you were saying you actually do connect remotely with 2 servers. :grinning:

I think you have it correct. The odd thing is that the ATVs in House #2 can see the local HDHR that is in House #2. It shows up as a source, I can scan it for channels, it finds channels, and the content shows up in the guide. My guess is that when I select something to watch, the app is going back to Channels DVR in House #1 to try to access the tuner and it obviously fails since it has no way to connect to the House #2 HDHR. I must be the first to have tried this or to at least surface the issue.

Yeah, I think the key was the server taking ownership after it was connected.

Can you uninstall the DVR app and just install the standalone and see if it reverts back to just seeing and working with the HDHR in House # 2?

Or, can you try setting up a VPN, between the houses? I am pretty sure your experience for HDHR channels from House # 2 would suffer...maybe considerably.

Your best option, while at house # 2, may be to use HDHR app for locals at House #2 and Channels for recordings or locals from House #1.

If you need to record channels from House # 2, you might consider setting up a server there, as well.

To the Devs: I know if I want to remotely connect to my home server, I just log in to my channels account and, as long as I have it set up on the server, I am directed to my home server. With Channels DVR, I know I can have more than one server setup and I know I can select by IP, when I am local to those servers. If I did have more than one server set up, at different sites, how can I access them remotely and select which one I am connected to? Or, do all my servers converge and I get the best of all the servers? If they converge, then the best thing for seaside63 would be to set up a local server at House # 2, correct?

The app can be connected to only one dvr at a time.

Your dvr subscription gives you the ability to expose one dvr server for remote access.

Multiple dvr access and mixed local/remote dvr or HDHR is not something we have tested and we don't know how the code will react to such a setup.