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v4l2 TV timeshift application

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Bash script configurable using limited resources for doing timeshift TV (pause, fast forward and rewind while watching TV). Developed for capture chip bt848, bt849, bt878 or bt879 (bttv module), may also work for other analog capture devices compatible with v4l2, including digital television hybrid cards (Not all v4l2 devices are checked, tested with saa7134, TV hybrid cards cx88 and USB em28xx).

The script is an standalone TV timeshift application (probably the best you can use with analog sources in known universe), but also you can try the server side (same script) that works like a timeshift provider of captured files for a local network.

Usage: Install transcode and xawtv, configure OSS sound capture (if you use pulseaudio then install oss-compat [deb] and libasound2-plugins [deb] or alsa-plugins-pulse [rpm] packages) and enable "repeat playlist" on your video player, then:

./timeshift.sh [OPTION1 value] [OPTION2 value] ...
./timeshift.sh -h for help

timeshift.sh Web Site


  • Live TV window, transcode's feature, you can watch live show while watching timeshift videos, at no added cost.
  • You can choose your favourite video player for watching timeshift videos, among others, kaffeine, kplayer, vlc.
  • Low processor load.
  • Multicore support, the script runs modular processes, each with its own threat.
  • Multiuser and multi-instances, you can run several timeshift.sh when you install a multidevice card.
  • Standard MPEG-4 .avi videos, you can watch the videos or edit them when you want. The script utilizes a transcode filter, standard MPEG-4 videos shine like the best video encoders, even at low bitrates.
  • Unique continuous sessions feature, when you close the script you can store past videos and continue recording after the last.
  • Not needed terminal.
  • SERVER function with the same script:
  • -Unlimited video size and number of video buffers, fully customizable, even months or years.
  • -Stable and secure.
  • -It might use terminal, and not needed X windows manager, optionally ttv for tv-init.
  • -Unattended, after a reboot the videos are recorded after the last one, with minimal data loss.
  • -Several possibilities for LAN configuration.

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Additional Project Details



Intended Audience

Advanced End Users, End Users/Desktop

User Interface


Programming Language

Unix Shell


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