Channels DVR Server

Our flexible, standalone DVR server that lets you schedule and watch recordings anywhere.

The brain for Channels Plus.

Channels DVR Server runs on your computer or NAS device at home. There's no cloud to worry about. Your recordings and shows will always be available. Simply install Channels DVR Server on a device and Channels will magically see it from any TV or device you own.

As a Channels Plus subscriber, your first step is to simply install Channels DVR Server to let it power your new TV watching experience.

Installs on virtually any device.

With minimum requirements of 1GHz CPU and 1GB RAM, it doesn't take a fast computer to run Channels DVR Server. Find an old computer and connect a big hard drive to it. You'll be running a DVR at home in minutes.

Minimum Requirements

  • HDHomeRun network TV tuner
  • 1GHz CPU (64-bit Intel, or 32-bit/64-bit ARM)
  • 512MB RAM
  • Large HDD for storing recordings
  • HDTV is on average ~8GB per hour

Recommended Requirements

  • HDHomeRun network TV tuner
  • Intel CPU with Quick Sync for hardware transcoding
  • 1GB RAM
  • 2TB HDD for storing over 250 hours of recordings

Install Channels DVR Server


Raspberry Pi

The new Raspberry Pi 4 makes for a great Channels DVR Server. We have built a custom image that lets you flash it directly onto your USB 3.0 hard drive and get set up with Channels DVR server in minutes.

Learn More about our custom Raspberry Pi image and how it works.

Download Pi Image More Info Setup Documentation

Note: If you would like to install Channels DVR Server directly on your existing Pi, you can do so by following the standard Linux instructions.

macOS

Channels DVR Server can be installed on macOS Yosemite (10.10) or newer.

Download

Install Notes

  • The service runs on port 8089, and has a web interface available at http://localhost:8089 for configuration.
  • Change your Energy Saver preference to "Prevent computer from sleeping" to ensure the DVR does not miss any recordings.
  • Run the installer again if you need to stop or uninstall Channels DVR Server.
  • If you would like to run the DVR as a background service, open Terminal.app and paste: `~/Library/Application\ Support/ChannelsDVR/install.sh --system`. Note that the hardware transcoder is not available when running as a service.

Windows

Channels DVR Server can be installed on versions of Windows 7, 8 and 10.

Download 64-bit Download 32-bit

Install Notes

  • Channels DVR Server does not require administrator privileges, and installs into c:\ProgramData\ChannelsDVR.
  • The first time it runs, the Windows Firewall may ask for Administrator privileges to allow private network access.
  • The service runs on port 8089, and has a web interface available at http://localhost:8089 for configuration.
  • The service starts up automatically on login. Run netplwiz.exe to enable auto login and ensure the service is always running after a reboot.
  • Computers with modern NVidia or Intel HD Graphics cards can automatically utilize hardware accelerated transcoding. Use the Intel Driver Update Utility to make sure your drivers are up to date.
  • We recommend the 64-bit version of Windows for optimal performance, but a 32-bit installer is also available.

Linux / FreeBSD

Channels DVR Server can be installed on Linux or FreeBSD by running a simple script.

Install Notes

SSH into your linux machine and use the following command to install Channels DVR Server:

curl -f -s https://getchannels.com/dvr/setup.sh | sh
  • The setup script will create a channels-dvr directory in the current directory and download Channels DVR Server there. It will then detect if your linux distribution uses systemd, upstart or init.d, and will install the appropriate startup script. The script may ask for sudo access during this process.
  • We recommend that you run the setup script in your home directory as your own user so Channels DVR Server is installed into ~/channels-dvr.
  • If you prefer instead to install into /usr/local, run this before the setup script:
    cd /usr/local && sudo mkdir -p channels-dvr && \
    sudo chown $(id -u -n) channels-dvr
  • If you have an Intel processor, make sure you add your user to the video and render groups so the Channels DVR Server transcoder can use /dev/dri for hardware acceleration: sudo adduser $(id -u -n) video.
  • If your / and /home mounts have limited space or i/o-throughput (for example, when using an SD card with the Raspberry Pi), install Channels DVR Server on an externally mounted USB HDD instead.
  • If you plan to use TV Everywhere, install your linux distrubution's chrome or chromium package. For example, apt-get install chromium-browser.
  • The service runs on port 8089, and has a web interface available at http://localhost:8089 for configuration.
  • Bonjour (aka zeroconf) is used by the Channels apps to automatically discover your DVR on your network. If you have a firewall, ensure that port 5353 is whitelisted for TCP/UDP access.

Synology

Channels DVR Server can be installed by uploading our software into the Synology DSM Package Center.

Download

Install Notes

For more information, see the DSM Documentation.

Navigate to the the manual install page



Upload

QNAP

Channels DVR Server can be installed by uploading our software into the QNAP App Center.

Download

Install Notes

For more information, see the QNAP App Center documentation.

  • QTS 4.2.0 or higher is required.
  • To make sure your DVR recordings start on time, go to Control Panel > General Settings > Time and change Time interval to every 6 hours.
  • The service runs on port 8089. QNAP's Virtualization Station also uses port 8089 and will cause the installation of Channels DVR Server to fail. Please disable Virtualization Station if you have installed it, or change its settings to use a different port than 8089.

WD MyCloud

Channels DVR Server can be installed by uploading our software into the Apps tab.

OS5

Download for MirrorGen2 Download for PR2100 Download for PR4100 Download for EX2Ultra Download for EX4100

OS3

Download for MirrorGen2 Download for DL2100 Download for DL4100 Download for PR2100 Download for PR4100 Download for EX2 Download for EX2Ultra Download for EX4 Download for EX2100 Download for EX4100

Other

Install on MyCloud Home Install on MyCloud (single-drive old model)

Install Notes

The single-drive WDMyCloud and WDMyCloudMirror (Gen1) are not compatible with Channels DVR Server.

For more information, see the WDMyCloud documentation.

Netgear ReadyNAS

Channels DVR Server can be installed by uploading our software into the ReadyNAS Apps interface.

Download

Install Notes

ReadyNAS OS 6.2 is required. For more information, see this tutorial.

Navigate to the upload page



Upload

Seagate/Lacie (NAS OS)

Channels DVR Server can be installed by uploading our software into the NAS OS App Manager

Download for Intel Download for ARM

Install Notes

NAS OS 4.2 is required. For more information, see the NAS OS documentation.

Unraid

Channels DVR Server can be installed on the Docker tab using a template repository.

View Template Repository

Install Notes

unRAID v6 is required. For more information, see the unRAID documentation.

Add the URL of the template repository



Create container



Channels DVR Server running


For hardware transcoding support, edit /boot/config/go to add the line modprobe i915, and configure your container to pass-through the /dev/dri device:

FreeNAS

Channels DVR Server can be installed on FreeNAS 10 via our iocage plugin.

Install Notes

Run the following command to install Channels DVR Server iocage plug-in:

iocage fetch -P --name "channels-dvr" \
     vnet=on dhcp=on bpf=yes devfs_ruleset=4 interfaces=vnet0:bridge0

Asustor

Channels DVR Server can be installed by uploading our software into Asustor App Central.

Download

Install Notes

NVidia SHIELD

Channels DVR Server can be installed on the NVidia SHIELD from the Google Play store.

View on Google Play

Install Notes

SHIELD Experience 5.1 or higher is required.

After installing Channels DVR Server from the Google Play store, open it to receive installation instructions.

Docker

Channels DVR Server can be run as a Docker container.

Install Notes

Start up Channels DVR Server via Docker:

docker run \
  --detach \
  --name=channels-dvr \
  --net=host \
  --restart=on-failure:10 \
  --device /dev/dri:/dev/dri \
  --volume /mnt/disk/dvr/config:/channels-dvr \
  --volume /mnt/disk/dvr/recordings:/shares/DVR \
  fancybits/channels-dvr:latest

Or add this to your docker-compose.yml:

channels-dvr:
  image: fancybits/channels-dvr:latest
  container_name: channels-dvr
  network_mode: host
  ports:
    - "8089:8089"
  restart: on-failure:10
  devices:
    - /dev/dri:/dev/dri
  volumes:
    - /mnt/disk/dvr/config:/channels-dvr
    - /mnt/disk/dvr/recordings:/shares/DVR
  • Use the fancybits/channels-dvr:tve image if you need TV Everywhere support
  • The --net=host option is required for the Channels apps to discovery your DVR via Bonjour.
  • Neither Docker for Mac nor Docker for Windows support --net=host. When running on these platforms, you'll have to connect to Channels DVR Server by IP address from Channels. You can do this in the Settings tab of the Channels Apps.

More about Channels Plus

Channels Plus adds premium features that transforms Channels into a media powerhouse.

Learn more about Channels Plus