Enabling ssh and adding plugins the easy way

by editor @ AppleTVHacks.net on November 1, 2007


Every now and then, I still get emails asking me if there is an easy way to enable ssh on the Apple TV. Yes, we have tutorial for that but that one requires an uncivilized way of opening the Apple TV up, take out the hard drive, put it in an enclosure, etc. (you know the whole drill). That’s just old school and so cruel to your Apple TV. Besides that method actually voids the warranty on your Apple TV.

It is much easier to use the Patchstick method, which has been around for a while now. All you need is a USB stick and an Intel Mac. You have probably seen the Patchstick in action on the Jaman post a month back. However, Jaman’s version is specifically designed to get the Jaman player on to the Apple TV and nothing else.

Francesco Cerofolini has written a simple tutorial (in both Italian and English) of how you can get your Apple TV ssh-enabled. It is pretty much the same as what I have written for the Jaman post. The Patchstick file used in his tutorial also adds access to the Plugins directory from AwkwardTV. This makes it much easier to install new plugins from AwkwardTV.

To many of the frequent readers of the site, I know that this is nothing new. However, my intention was to simplify hacking for a lot of the newcomers out there.

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  • http://www.icreate-group.com wes

    This is all happening second time trying to create a patchstick on the same machine.
    The first patchstick was created without any error mensages.
    Please let me know.. what I’m doing wrong! Thanks

    Are you sure you want to partition disk /dev/disk1? [yes|no]yes

    Partitioning /dev/disk1:
    Started partitioning on disk disk1
    Creating Partition Map
    5% ..Formatting Disk 10% ..Formatting Disk 100% ..
    Finished partitioning on disk disk1
    /dev/disk1
    #: type name size identifier
    0: GUID_partition_scheme *477.4 MB disk1
    1: Apple_HFS Patchstick-root 80.0 MB disk1s1
    2: Apple_HFS Patchstick 397.3 MB disk1s2
    Patitions done.
    Creating System folders…
    mkdir: /Volumes/Patchstick-root/sbin: File exists
    mkdir: /Volumes/Patchstick-root/etc: File exists
    mkdir: /Volumes/Patchstick-root/dev: File exists
    mkdir: /Volumes/Patchstick-root/OSBoot: File exists
    mkdir: /Volumes/Patchstick-root/stuff: File exists
    ln: /Volumes/Patchstick-root/bin/sbin: File exists
    Copying System Extentions…
    cp: cannot overwrite directory /Volumes/Patchstick-root/System/Library/Frameworks/IOKit.framework/Versions/Current with non-directory /System/Library/Frameworks/IOKit.framework/Versions/Current
    cp: cannot overwrite directory /Volumes/Patchstick-root/System/Library/Frameworks/IOKit.framework/Resources with non-directory /System/Library/Frameworks/IOKit.framework/Resources
    cp: cannot overwrite directory /Volumes/Patchstick-root/System/Library/Frameworks/CoreFoundation.framework/Versions/Current with non-directory /System/Library/Frameworks/CoreFoundation.framework/Versions/Current
    cp: cannot overwrite directory /Volumes/Patchstick-root/System/Library/Frameworks/CoreFoundation.framework/Resources with non-directory /System/Library/Frameworks/CoreFoundation.framework/Resources
    Copying System files…
    Adding Kerberos…
    cp: cannot overwrite directory /Volumes/Patchstick-root/System/Library/Frameworks/OSXFrames/Kerberos.framework/Versions/Current with non-directory /System/Library/Frameworks/Kerberos.framework/Versions/Current
    cp: cannot overwrite directory /Volumes/Patchstick-root/System/Library/Frameworks/OSXFrames/Kerberos.framework/Resources with non-directory /System/Library/Frameworks/Kerberos.framework/Resources
    Copying Patchstick files…
    – Perian not found in /Library/QuickTime. Skipping…
    Changing Patchstick-root to Apple TV Mode…
    Disk /dev/disk1 unmounted
    gpt remove: /dev/disk1: 1 partition(s) removed
    Disk /dev/disk1 unmounted
    Disk /dev/disk1 unmounted

    Your disk /dev/disk1 is now unmounted and ready to patch your AppleTV.
    Enjoy… :-)

  • FOLKA

    WOW, how i do like this website. All these plugins. i tried some with the “BackRow for Intel MAcs” and they worked fine. Are u planing to support Leopard soon because the Apple TV Interface is integrated in the new OSX.5.
    I’d like to very much, Thanx!!

  • Richard

    I’m not a total idiot…I’ve hacked my ipod Touch installing ssh and using terminal but for the life of me I cant wrap myself around this tutorial. I’ve got the jump drive, the downloads and the intel Mac but I’m stuck.

    In the instructions starting with “something.dmg” I get lost.

    If someone that has made this work using this tutorial could you write a better more detailed tutorial. I’ve got the feeling there is a step missing here.

    I’d love to do this so if anyone could spend 5 minutes in a more detailed tutorial I would appreciate it.

  • Shahid

    I get an error stating that I need to run this script as ROOT. I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong. Please help!

  • josephbphillips

    @Shahid

    Type “sudo” (w/o the quotation marks obviously) before any command to run as root. In this case “sudo ./createPatchstick /dev/diskX” where X is the number of the disk you are creating.

    @Richard

    Nothing missing. For the DMG, all you have to do is download the file and double click it to mount it. Be more specific about your confusion if you can.

    Try this http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/content/view/30103/82/ for another opinion.

  • Jim Z

    For all of us who have the AppleTV but not the intel Mac (I have 2 G5s at home), is anyone selling a patchdisk? Does anyone know where I could get one that would give me that same functionality?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Jim

  • Pepe

    I am having the same problems as Wes… exactly the same terminal screen text. It seems the script partitions the usb drive but cant copy some of the files. Also, it says that it cant find perian in the /library/quicktime folder…and I have the file there!

    Pls, all help is greatly appreciated

  • Richard

    So much for the easy method huh?

  • http://www.leopardtricks.com/ James

    You must be root for the patchstick create script to work.

    sudo ./createPatchstick /dev/diskXX (where diskXX is the correct disk)

    it will prompt for your administrator password.

    Also note that you can’t use a patchstick that was made on a mac with Leopard installed, on an appleTV, it wont work. It must be created under 10.4.X (tiger)

  • Wolf

    @ Jim Z
    I used a file from:
    http://www.isohunt.com/torrents/?ihq=patchstick

    Worked great for me in Vista, but use it with caution and read the readme.txt wery careful. Good luck!

  • JimZ

    Wolf, Thanks.

    Still having issues though. Seems like the image file is damaged because it completes but states that there was an error opening a file.

    Help anyone? Does anyone have an img that they can send me? I’d really appreciate it.

    Jim

  • Thiebaud

    Hi,

    I tried several times to run the script, succeeded once (without Perian), installed Perian on my iMac Intel Mac OS 10.4.10, then run multiple times the script but I get always something apparently wrong at the very end of it when trying to dismount all mounted volumes:

    “gpt add: unable to open device ‘/dev/disk1′: Resource busy”

    If I look at the script, I can see the command which fails:
    gpt add -b $START -s $SIZE -i 1 -t “5265636F-7665-11AA-AA11-00306543ECAC” $THEDISK

    I cant’ understand what teh script tries to do here. I’d be grateful if somebody could tell me what’s wrong and how dangerous it could be to boot my Apple TV on this USB stick now.

    I’ve copied below the full execution output of the script.

    Many thanks!

    Thiebaud

    xxxx:~/Desktop/Patchstick xxxx$ sudo ./createPatchstick /dev/disk1

    — Generation of Apple TV Patchstick —

    Created by Marook.
    Thanks to: MacTijn, Alan_Quatermain & ericIII

    —————————————–

    Are you sure you want to partition disk /dev/disk1? [yes|no]yes

    Partitioning /dev/disk1:
    Started partitioning on disk disk1
    Creating Partition Map
    5% ..Formatting Disk 10% ..Formatting Disk 100% ..
    Finished partitioning on disk disk1
    /dev/disk1
    #: type name size identifier
    0: GUID_partition_scheme *3.8 GB disk1
    1: EFI 200.0 MB disk1s1
    2: Apple_HFS Patchstick-root 80.0 MB disk1s2
    3: Apple_HFS Patchstick 3.4 GB disk1s3
    Patitions done.
    Creating System folders…
    Copying System Extentions…
    Copying System files…
    Adding Kerberos…
    Copying Patchstick files…
    – Found Perian component. Adding it to the Patchstick…
    Changing Patchstick-root to Apple TV Mode…
    Disk /dev/disk1 unmounted
    gpt remove: /dev/disk1: 1 partition(s) removed
    Disk /dev/disk1 unmounted
    gpt add: unable to open device ‘/dev/disk1′: Resource busy
    Disk /dev/disk1 unmounted

    Your disk /dev/disk1 is now unmounted and ready to patch your AppleTV.
    Enjoy… :-)

  • J

    Ahhhh just found this AFTER upgrading to Leopard. Anyone have any thoughts on how to do this from a Leopard Intel Mac? Dying to introduce remote desktop so I can control my music from any mac in my house.

  • Chase

    Doesn’t anybody simply have a torrent or disk dmg download of the exact image ready to copy onto the USB thumbdrive?

    Better yet, a disk image of the entire OSX image to Software Restore onto the new AppleTV hard drive to boot in Tiger/Leopard???

    Please somebody! You could probly even sell access to the dmg!

    Then it’s practically 1 step!!

    Anybody willing to provide & share?

  • jason

    does sshd from leopard work? I’ve followed the process, but do not gain access. I no longer have a 10.4 install and can’t find my install dvds (nor do I really want to reinstall the OS).

  • Ryan

    Has anyone got this to work from Leopard?

  • Joe

    I cannot get this to work with Leopard. I can create the patchstick on my usb drive, but when I plug it in and run it through the restart process, no additional menus are loaded on my apple tv.

  • Richard

    again…so much for the easy method

  • http://justicle.com Justicle

    Hey, thanks for the re-post – I just found this site today and thats exactly what I need.

  • Gz

    I have tried to use the patchstick over and over. I manually verified all the stuff is there but my appleTV boots normally. It does boot to the patchstick but it is the recovery console. I never see the console boot sequence, just the normal apple boot screen. What did I screw up?

  • Travis

    GZ – I’m having the same problem… Created the patchstick (under Tiger) and didn’t receive any errors. My AppleTV doesn’t seem to be booting to the patchstick. It will reboot a few times and then dump me into the Recovery Console.

    Anybody have any ideas?

  • GZ

    I found somewhere else to try using a smaller stick, (512 or 256). All i have is a 1 gig so I can’t even try.

  • GDayM8

    I created the Patchstick (under Tiger) with a 4gb stick and wasn’t able to get it to work at all. I finally used a 128mb stick and it worked beautifully. (GZ – Thanks for the tip!)

  • Toink

    i made a patchstick but, when i plugged it in my atv it doesn’t finish, i mean, there an exception handler

  • Gassim krom

    I want tonow how can i add plugings to the root file

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