I am looking for software programs to use my TV Tuner card in Ubuntu. I have mythTV installed and use it quite a bit. But I am looking for a program that can tune my tuner card in just a window, not only a full-screen.

E.g. - I would like to watch something in a browser, while having a TV channel playing in another window. Maybe a program like VLC that can control my tuner?

7 Answers 7


You're requesting to watch TV with VLC - well it is possible. See this answer.

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Else some illustrations of the other applications:

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Me TV is a pretty decent under-appreciated application for DVB-* devices.

Has an EPG, even recording facilities. Much, much lighter than MythTV.

To install Me TV in Ubuntu 16.04 and earlier open the terminal and type:

sudo apt install me-tv

MythTV can also be configured to run in a window. In the MythTV Frontend, go to Setup > Appearance and the first screen should look similar to the screen below. You can set the size of the menu here, and also if you want the playback to use the same size area. Setting the window border option will add or remove the window border, and setting fixed window size will make the windows either resizable or not.

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To install MythTV in all currently supported versions of Ubuntu open the terminal and type:

sudo apt install mythtv

There is also Gnome's own DVB Daemon. As its name suggests it sits behind the scenes allowing applications to leverage its power. There is a Install totem-plugins-dvb-daemon that allows you to use it though I haven't tested a recent version, so I don't quite know how good it is.

sudo apt-get install totem-plugins-dvb-daemon

That will get all the dependencies too.


You could always use mpv which has evolved from MPlayer.

mpv --fs dvb://[card_number@]channel
mplayer -fs dvb://[card_number@]channel 

The -fs flag enables full screen mode.


You could always just do mythfrontend -w and run MythTV Install mythtv in a window. You may have to do Alt + Space to bring up a menu and leave fullscreen mode. Also, as I recall. there's a setting for the frontend to always start in windowed mode.


tvtime is probably the simplest window type TV viewer. It works well with ATI cards. To install tvtime in all currently supported versions of Ubuntu run the following command:

sudo apt install tvtime
  • 1
    @Steve: I think that I tried TVtime long time ago, but it runs only with analogical signal and not with numeric signal no ?
    – Boris
    Nov 12, 2011 at 17:38

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