Automate TiVoToGo Downloads, Decryption, And Commercial Removal

Lifehacker has an article today about a TiVo tool called KMTTG. KMTTG, which apparently stands for Kevin Moye (the author) TiVoToGo, is a Perl/Tk program that… well, I’ll let Kevin explain it:

kmttg is a Perl/Tk program I wrote to facilitate TivoToGo (TTG) transfers that can download, create metadata, decrypt, run comskip & comcut (commercial detection and removal) and re-encode multiple shows you select from your Tivos all in 1 step. The program also has the capability to transfer and process shows automatically from your Tivos based on titles and keywords you setup.

In slightly less geeky speak that means kmttg can download content from your TiVo via TiVoToGo. Parse out the program information and description, the metadata, and save it. Decrypt the TiVoToGo .tivo file into a standard MPEG-2 file. Run an application called ‘comskip’ which analyzes the video and marks where it believes the commercial breaks are. Then call ‘comcut’ which takes the information comskip provided and removes the commercial breaks from the video. And finally it can then take that video and transcode it into other formats, such as H.264 for your portable device.

Now, it doesn’t do all of this itself. In fact kmttg is really a wrapper of scripts written in Perl with a user interface written in Tk which automates and abstracts several other applications such as curl, TiVoDecode, mencoder, ffmpeg, comskip, etc. So you could do all of these steps manually and individually, but kmttg makes it much simpler and easier.

Installing and using kmttg is probably not for the technophobe. You need to have Perl and Tk installed on your system, and neither is standard on Windows. You’ll need to install a Perl distribution, such as ActiveState ActivePerl, and possible manually install Tk as well. kmttg is available for Windows and Linux, though since it is Perl and the prerequisites, or their equivalents, exist for Mac I bet a technically savvy Mac user could produce a working Mac version as well. Going by the kmttg discussion thread at TiVoCommunity, it looks like it has been tried.

kmttg looks like a nice tool for those who want to extract video from their TiVo and use it elsewhere. It is a free alternative to TiVo Desktop Plus on Windows, and it has features like commercial removal which TDP lacks.

If you have, or know of, a TiVo-related application I’ve missed, let me know.

About MegaZone

MegaZone is the Editor of Gizmo Lovers and the chief contributor. He's been online since 1989 and active in several generations of 'social media' - mailing lists, USENet groups, web forums, and since 2003, blogging.    MegaZone has a presence on several social platforms: Google+ / Facebook / Twitter / LinkedIn / LiveJournal / Web.    You can also follow Gizmo Lovers on other sites: Blog / Google+ / Facebook / Twitter.
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