How to make mythbackend start automatically

In part of my quest to automate the startup of my MythTV, and in my quest for WAF (Wife approval factor), I’ve identified a few small issues that don’t seem terribly well documented anywhere.

I’m going to document them here, as clearly as I can.

This Howto contains a very simple startup script for automatically starting mythbackend on boot.

I’m using Debian lenny/testing, but this will apply to most Debian versions, and perhaps Ubuntu too.

You’ll need to create a file, lets call it /etc/init.d/mythbackend, with the following in it.

# Start/stop/restart mythbackend
# Modification done by Benoit Beauchamp, based on rc.mysqld by
# Copyright 2003 Patrick J. Volkerding, Concord, CA
# Copyright 2003 Slackware Linux, Inc., Concord, CA
# This program comes with NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.
# You may redistribute copies of this program under the terms of the
# GNU General Public License.

# Start mythbackend:
myth_start() {
  if [ -x /usr/local/bin/mythbackend ]; then
    # If there is an old PID file (no mythbackend running), clean it up:
    if [ -r /var/run/ ]; then
      if ! ps axc | grep mythbackend 1> /dev/null 2> /dev/null ; then
        echo "Cleaning up old /var/run/"
        rm -f /var/run/
    /usr/local/bin/mythbackend -l /var/log/mythbackend.log -v important,general -p /var/run/ -d

# Stop mythbackend:
myth_stop() {
  # If there is no PID file, ignore this request...
  if [ -r /var/run/ ]; then
    killall mythbackend

# Restart mythbackend:
myth_restart() {

case "$1" in
  echo "usage $0 start|stop|restart"

Then you’ll have to set that file as executable

chmod +x /etc/init.d/mythbackend

Now, test it and make sure it does what its supposed to.
Make sure mythbackend isn’t running, and then try:

/etc/init.d/mythbackend start

Check to see if its running. If not, check all the paths in the script, if it is, hurray!

Now we need to add it to run on boot, and as a bonus, shutdown mythbackend properly on shutdown
We’ll do this the Debian Way ™

update-rc.d mythbackend defaults 90

And that should do it! Give your machine a reboot and see it mythbackend started on its own.

How to Install usplash under Debian testing/lenny

Since Splashy is no longer part of the package tree for Debian, I decided to give usplash a go.
Its the same splash loaded that Ubuntu use, and it works quite nicely on my Ubuntu desktop machine at work.
I run Debian testing (its not THAT bad.. sheesh)

I needed it for my MythTV, for WAF (Wife approval factor).
If anyone has a nice MythTV style boot image, please do send it on.

So here’s what I’ve got so far…

Continue reading How to Install usplash under Debian testing/lenny