Sleepless HTPC - FAQs


Why won’t Sleepless go to sleep when “Media Center - ehShell” or “ehVid” is showing?

When using Sleepless, does one have to change the power settings on the computer?

When the user input limit is reached, the computer tries to go to sleep; then turns right back on

Why does the Sleepless HTCP Indicator sometimes blink purple?

The computer goes to sleep but now takes a longer time to come back up.  Why?

Why is there a Sleep Button?  Won't Sleepless put the computer into sleep when all green and User Input  times out?

What should I put the settings at?

 



Why won’t Sleepless go to sleep when “Media Center - ehShell” or “ehVid” is showing?


Windows Media Center (WMC) Programs

WMC is actually a number of programs:  

  • One program (the overarching control) is always active and operates in the background and Microsoft has made it so it can never be shut down (well, not easily anyway).
  • Some programs (the recording ones) are fired up when WMC records.
  • Other programs (the active viewing ones) are under your manual control and are invoked when you can see the WMC Screen.  


All the WMC programs are prefixed with 'eh'.

Always open and controlling program:

  • ehRecvr

Viewing Programs:

  • ehShell
  • ehSched
  • ehTray

Recording programs:

  • ehSched
  • ehRec
  • ehTray 
  • ehVid - Analyses and tidies up the video after the recording has stopped

ehShell problem

If "Media Center - ehshell" is showing and WMC has been shut down (not just minimised) then there's most likely a problem with WMC.  Sometimes, after a crash or other unusual occurrence, there can be more than one instance of the WMC viewing shell (ehShell) running.  That is; one you can see on Windows Desktop and one that has not been shut down correctly (erroneously still running in the background) and that you can't actually see.  

The way to fix this is to kill the erroneous version(s) of ehShell.  If you don't feel comfortable 'killing' processes using MS Task Manager (or a program like Process Hacker) then the easiest approach is to reboot your PC for a clean start.


ehVid Still Showing After Recording Stopped

The WMC recording process still operates for (typically) 20-30 minutes after the schedule recording has stopped as it needs to do some housekeeping chores (ehVid).  But sometimes, on long HD recording, it can take an hour or more to complete.  

Although the PC can be put to sleep while ehVid is running, I think that there is a better chance of the recorded video being error free if ehVid is not interrupted, hence Sleepless will not put the PC to sleep under these conditions.  A quick Google search on "ehVid.exe" will show a number of people are having problems with this WMC program.  Again, better to let it run uninterrupted.

Although I can't find any good reference to what ehVid actually does, I suspect it's doing some sort of 'Quick Stream Fix' on the video file which is superfluous on a good recording but worthwhile doing on a poor recording.  WMC just does it regardless.

Sleepless used to put the PC to sleep immediately after recording, but upon waking the PC ehVid would restart and continue to run and lock the recording file preventing the editing of recordings.  I would either have to kill ehVid or wait about half an hour until it completed its task.  Now Sleepless lets ehVid complete its task as part of the recording process.

As a general overarching statement; if ever the words 'Media Center - eh[something]' are showing (in yellow on the main screen) then WMC is doing its thing and, ideally, the PC ought not to be put to sleep.  That is, try to let the PC gracefully go to sleep rather than forcing the issue.


Note; Before Sleepless puts the PC to sleep, there's a short delay added after any of these 'eh' processes to ensure they have 'really' shut down.


When using Sleepless, does one have to change the power settings on the computer?

The first thing you need to do is to change the PC's power setting to sleep = never.  That is, turn off the Windows control.

Then Sleepless will issue its own commands to put the PC to sleep depending on the parameters that are set within Sleepless.  In other words; Sleepless completely by-passes the Windows power settings.

Please refer to the following for more detail on Sleepless’ settings

http://swysoft.com/index.php/products/sleepless-htpc/user-tips



When the user input limit is reached, the computer tries to go to sleep; then turns right back on

Good news is that you now have the PC going into the correct sleep mode because it's demonstrating that the turning on of the PC is under software control.  If it's the first time you have seen this type of behaviour then it's probably the first time your PC has actually gone into the sleep mode as opposed to just the screen turning off.  This 'turning right back on' behaviour means that WMC can also turn the PC on which is only available under the sleep mode; not the hibernation mode (Nb. Some TV tuners can be wired so as to turn a PC on from any mode but is not generally available under WMC).

Bad news is that it's the Windows setting for the mouse/keyboard (nothing to do with Sleepless) that's probably causing the problem.  It's most likely the keyboard/mouse has been set to wake the PC if any key is pressed or the mouse is moved.  That is the power management is being controlled by the keyboard/mouse and loss of power (when the PC shuts down) to an infrared mouse, or loss of power to a cordless keyboard, and the PC thinks that user has touched or moved the mouse/keyboard, and it wakes immediately.

Regardless of how you would have got your PC into the correct sleep mode (Sleepless or any other method), the problem you now have would be the same.  You need to prevent the keyboard/mouse from waking the PC by going into the PC's keyboard/moues power management settings.  See:

http://beingpc.com/2010/04/disable-mouse-and-keyboard-from-waking-up-pc/


If you have a wired keyboard and mouse you only have to disarm the infrared (it has a red light underneath) mouse.  If you have wireless keyboard and mouse, you have to disarm both.

Have a look at the following link.  If you are a novice, you may need a local friendly nerd to give you a hand to invoke the command prompt but it looks like a good way to debug your system.

http://www.techsupportalert.com/content/how-fix-computer-keeps-waking.htm

 

Why does the Sleepless HTCP Indicator sometimes blink purple?

Sleepless blinks purple to let you know you have clicked on the 'Sus'pend button.  This allows you to manually suspend any auto shutdown.  Click on the 'Sus'pend button again to enable Sleepless to again be able put the PC into sleep.

This 'Sus'pend function is provided for the times when (say) you want to do some lengthy PC work or maintenance that is not covered by your sleepless settings and you don’t want to have to keep waking the PC every time you come back to continue your work.

 

 

The computer goes to sleep but now takes a longer time to come back up.  Why?

When Sleepless puts the PC to sleep it uses really simple commands; the same as you might do from within the MS Windows' start button.  Sleepless has no influence over the waking process or times whatsoever and I purposely kept it really simple to minimise any adverse effects on the myriad of systems out there.  

Some people have reported longer PC start times but, on further investigation, it turned out to be that this was the first time the user was experiencing an actual wake from sleep process.  Previously the user was experiencing the time taking from a simple screen-off to screen-on process and the PC had not actually gone to sleep.  The screen-on process is a lot faster process than waking a PC from sleep mode.  

Sleep-mode wake process ought to be quite comparable to hibernation mode wake process.  The main difference between the two is that sleep mode can be woken via software control, whereas hibernation mode waking has to be via physically pressing a switch.

If your PC is taking more time to start from sleep mode then I suspect it's purely coincidental and there maybe some other problem with the PC.

Please do a full shutdown and reboot of your PC to clear any spurious problems that might be effecting your system.

  

 

Why is there a Sleep Button?  Won't Sleepless put the computer into sleep when all green and User Input  times out?


Sleepless has a number of convenient buttons that allow you to immediately put the PC to sleep, hibernate, restart, or shutdown without having to wait until the timer or other parameters reach their preset limits.  Also you don't have to hunt for those options under the various levels of the MS Windows' start button.

 

What should I put the settings at?

The default settings are a good place to start, but every PC is different.  For example; at idle a low powered PC's CPU would be loaded higher than a high powered PC's CPU.  So the CPU settings would be vastly different in these two cases.  The whole purpose of the settings form/window is that no one set of settings can service all PCs.  That is each PC must have its individual settings that best matches the PC hardware and the software loads normally placed on that PC hardware.

Refer to the User Tips for more detail.