Recent changes on the VM Network

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  • Onto the scan results for Tuesday:


    No changes to the SDT.


    The NIT Services analysis shows SID 416 Sky Nature & SID 522 Sky Documentaries being added to the remaining networks.

    This means the channels should now be available to users on customer facing networks on channels 280 and 278 respectively. As confirmed by earlier posts.


    No other changes. A relatively quiet update considering the channel additions but all of the SDT prep work had been done weeks ago.

  • That's what the pack override flag does. :P


    Although we've known about the packs for quite a while. The pack flags were added on December 4th.

    I know that's what the flag does, I was simply mentioning the end date now that it is known.


    I realise you mentioned the packs previously, but not everyone will have seen or be inclined to look at older posts they've missed. And others like seeing the official blurb/spin when it's released.

  • I know that's what the flag does, I was simply mentioning the end date now that it is known.


    I realise you mentioned the packs previously, but not everyone will have seen or be inclined to look at older posts they've missed. And others like seeing the official blurb/spin when it's released.

    Quite but that's what I mean, it's taken so long for VM to add the channels most people will have forgotten what happened along the way.

  • Several changes for Wednesday:


    The closure notification has now ended for the following services and the information slates have been removed / hidden from the EPG:


    SID 305 Home & Health

    SID 506 Home & Health +1

    SID 507 Discovery Shed

    SID 2602 Sky Cinema 5* Movies


    In all cases, the services have been hidden from the EPG by removing the hide reversal flag (the hide flag already being present).

    None of the channels have been moved to placeholder SIDs / EPG slots at this stage.


    SID 2602 has been renamed Sky 5* Movies DNR - so feel free to speculate about the meaning of "DNR".



    There were CDS (frequency) changes for the Exeter & Plymouth networks for TSIDs 1, 22-30 & 102.


    After clearing the higher frequencies of broadcast transport streams over the past months, the range is again being populated with broadcast transport streams. TSIDs 26-28 moving to the higher frequencies. As discussed last week, it would appear that these transport streams appear to be the next batches planned for service removal, with their services possibly being merged with services on other transport streams using the "new encoders". So, most likely, a temporary return to the higher frequencies until the transport streams are mothballed / withdrawn from service.

  • Back on topic...


    No changes noted for Saturday.


    A few coded tables have been added to the analysis to replace some of the reports that needed additional processing. My view is that the tables should just be deleted. Some sections of the SDT did need extra processing to get long form (row based) data into short form (columnar) format, but after the analysis reports obtained the data from elsewhere, the run 2 reports are, pretty much, redundant. So removing them and keeping the file size down seems preferable. Especially as the coded replacements are formula heavy and take up significantly more file space than the original run 2 reports.

    The coded tables have since been generated with reference codes taken from the SDT Services segment rather than regenerating references for each segment. This has significantly reduced the file size needed for the coded reports, so these have now officially replaced all of the remaining SDT "run 2" tables. The SDT run 2 tables, together with the redundant CDS run 2 tables have been deleted. The only run 2 tables remaining are for NIT Linkage and are only being retained until there is a change in VMs data to allow the new routines to be tested with live data.

  • Do Not Reverse? Do Not Re-use?

    Do Not Remove perhaps? If VM is holding the data, maybe expecting a replacement service at some point.


    It could just be a way of retaining old Sky Cinema Disney movies for longer than usual. Renaming an obsolete service seems odd.

  • On Sky, the short lived Sky 5* Movies was replaced by the return of Sky Premier +1. Perhaps there's some red tape to sort out and it might be coming back to VM too, so they don't want to scrub the data just yet?? There again, won't Disney/5* need it's own unique data to preserve recordings for a time?

  • On Sky, the short lived Sky 5* Movies was replaced by the return of Sky Premier +1. Perhaps there's some red tape to sort out and it might be coming back to VM too, so they don't want to scrub the data just yet?? There again, won't Disney/5* need it's own unique data to preserve recordings for a time?

    It's a HD config, so won't be useful for Sky Premier +1.


    Yes, it will have to stay in the config to retain recordings but VM doesn't seem to delete Sky Cinema data. The service placeholders are still in place for the old SD channels.

  • Thursday's changes:


    The SDT Root conditional access flag changed from "encrypted" to "not encrypted" for the following services:


    SID 305 Home & Health

    SID 506 Home & Health +1

    SID 507 Discovery Shed

    SID 2602 Sky 5* Movies DNR


    There were CDS (frequency) changes for the Leeds & York networks for TSIDs 14-15 (414-415), 16-30, 101 & 102.


    Once again, TSIDs 25-30 moved to frequencies adjacent to those already cleared of broadcast transport streams.

  • No changes on Friday's scan.


    A few changes to the analysis itself, largely driven by the analysts. This involved removing comparisons from NIT long form tables and using the file space saved to add a few additional short form tables (also without comparisons). I guess they are trying to avoid using the stand alone analysis tables from the old system. NIT Linkage segments (firmware updates etc over DVB) have also been removed, even though the new routines haven't been tested with live data. The customer facing linkage data hasn't been changed by VM since August and for "TRIALS" networks since September, so I guess the days of regular updates are over.

  • What are the practical implications of the lack of regular updates, jj? I have never understood what all this tells us, and whether it really does give us an eye into the future, particularly as VM seems to disguise anything they want to keep secret.


    Or is it perhaps more a fascination with all things technical (which of course I do understand)?


    I think also, looking to the future, given that the golden age of new TV channels is now over, these updates tell us nothing of the streaming services which may be coming to the platform, so perhaps the information will not be so useful in the future.


    It may be I am missing the blindingly obvious, but I would appreciate your patience with me!

    Protect the vulnerable and get back to work

  • What are the practical implications of the lack of regular updates, jj? I have never understood what all this tells us, and whether it really does give us an eye into the future, particularly as VM seems to disguise anything they want to keep secret.

    The updates mentioned only related to "NIT linkage" which is a round about way of updating hardware over DVB rather than online. The lack of updates only indicates that legacy TiVo is at the end of its development cycle and, perhaps, that VM have inserted online updates for the menu related data etc.


    I was referring to it because the modules used for analysis have changed significantly, to reduce file size requirements and eliminate the need for more than one processing run. Because there have been no recent updates from VM, we've been unable to test the modules with live data changes. It's not that important, it seems to work fine with old data. The problem being, we can't run old code and new code in parallel indefinitely, it fills up the hard drives, so the old code has now been deleted.


    VM keeping channel names secret is to be expected, although other carriers don't usually do it. They can't really test services without adding some metadata and that data usually reveals the service being carried.


    Or is it perhaps more a fascination with all things technical (which of course I do understand)?


    I think also, looking to the future, given that the golden age of new TV channels is now over, these updates tell us nothing of the streaming services which may be coming to the platform, so perhaps the information will not be so useful in the future.


    It may be I am missing the blindingly obvious, but I would appreciate your patience with me!

    It's not just a problem of new streaming services coming to the platform, the new TV 360 seems to be driven by an online EPG. A lot of the useful info extracted for these reports comes from the EPG section of the SDT. If that is eventually completely replaced with internet delivered metadata, it is lost to the reports. The information won't be as useful in future if there is less of it. For now, it's business as usual.


    Although we look at internet streaming of radio services, there are no plans to do anything similar for "TV" streaming services. These are too bespoke and, often, deliberately block sharing of directory based info. They are closed systems, eventually they will attempt to lock users into their service and not share data with or promote competitors or third party services. It will be very difficult to get useful information for these services other than from the source.

  • Sky Documentaries and Sky Nature SD are now live. Heads up from ScottishSteve in Cable Forum.

    Yeah!


    Something that was "coming soon", has actually come. What a nice change. ^^

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  • I get to watch great "quality" shows like Ancient Aliens again on Sky History. 8o


    Life is sweet. 8):D

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