Before we start using Sick Beard and SABnzbd
First of all: Kudos and respect to the Sick Beard team, the SABnzbd team, and AndyChuo for making this available to QNAP users!
This article is in no way meant to promote pirating!
Verify what the legal limitations are in your country before proceeding!
This guide is based on x86 (Intel) based QNAP NAS.
For example TS-239, TS-259, TS-439, TS-459, TS-559, TS-659, TS-809, TS-839, TS-859, etc.
Note sure what platform your QNAP NAS is?
Check the QNAP Comparison chart for more details on the model you have.
The needed packages are also available for the ARM platform (check the forum links), in this guide however I just focus on the x86 platform NAS models.
P.s.: If you plan on using SABnzbd and Sick Beard on MacOS X, Linux, or Windows:
The instructions are very similar, just a few minor changes like the use of QPKG’s.
There is a new QPKG available for SABnzbd, which helps automatische updates etc. Read the QNAP forum article for more details.
Most QPKG files are ZIPPED (or compressed in another format like RAR or GZ). Before uploading these to your QNAP you MUST decompress/unzip them otherwise your QNAP will not recognize them!
First we need to install and enable a few QPKG’s on your QNAP.
Please follow exactly this order and do not forget to unzip, install and enable the QPKG one at a time. A detailed description on how to install and enable QPKGs can be found in this article.
Remember: Complete installation and enabling of a QPKG before proceeding to the next QPKG!
I took the liberty to combine these in one zip file, for your convenience. It is however strongly recommended that you verify if newer versions of these files have been made available – verify using the links mentioned in the list above.
Download - Sickbeard for Qnap (Intel)
Setting up SABnzbd
After enabling all 4 QPKG in the previous step, we will now have to first configure SABnzbd. For this we need to go to the link shown on the “Web page” line when we enabled SABnzbd (you remembered that one, right? Otherwise go back to the “INSTALLED QPKG” window, click “SABnzbdplus” and click the link there – see also this article).
In this article I’m using Giganews as a Usenet provider (which is the one I use), other providers work in a similar fashion.
GigaNews – Free Trial!
Once you opened the link to your QNAP installed SABnzbd (typical format: http://<ip of your nas>:8800/wizard/), a setup wizard will show and ask for your preferred language, select your language and click “Start Wizard“:
(screenshots based on SABnzbd v0.6.5):
SABnzbd – Pick the language you prefer
The next window will go through the server settings of your Usenet provider (in this example I used Giganews).
The settings for Giganews and for example EasyNews are:
Usenet server settings
To make sure the settings work click the “Test Server” button which will show “Connection Successful” if all the settings worked
SABnzbd – Usenet server settings (Giganews in this example)
After clicking “Next” a new window appears, allowing you to determine if SABnzbd can be accessed from other computers – you can even define a username and password. In my setup I do allow access from other computers in my network, but I want to use a username and password to prevent others from messing with my stuff …
SABnzbd – Accessing SABnzbd from other computers
Click “Next” again and we see a page allowing us to setup Newzbin.com or NZBMatrix.com – both are optional but at least one of these is strongly recommended.
Update: NZBMatrix, as great as it was, is no longer with us – it’s been taken down. Look for alternatives like NZBPlanet, etc.
Both services use RSS to retrieve your NZB information to be read by SABnzbd.
SABnzbd – NZB service settings
For some of these services to work you will need to get a VIP account. Quite often these services are not free – so do your homework and see what others say about particular services..
Anyhow; being a VIP you typically get an API Key which is needed to use the service with SABnzbd.
To get the API key, login to youraccount, upgrade to a VIP account (in case you haven’t already), and copy the API key into SABnzbd.
Click “Next” and SABnzbd will restart:
SABnzbd – Restarting …
SABnzbd – Restarted …
As you can see:
The last page shows you the direct links to SABnzbd on this computer – not a bad idea to either bookmark or write them down.
Click “Go to SABnabd” to go to the SABnzbd web-interface.
SABnzbd – Web Interface for the first time
Next thing to do, to prevent user access issues to downloaded files, is to do a minor configuration change in SABnzbd.
No file access rights have been set in the standard configuration (which appears to be a potential issue when sharing the files).
In the SABnzbd web interface, click the “Config” button (upper right corner), in the upcoming configuration window click “Folders” (top left). Next step is to enter “777” (without the quotes) in the “Permissions for completed downloads” field and click “Save Changes” (bottom right).
SABnzbd – File Access Rights
OK, so (for now) we’re done with SABnzbd … on to the next part … Sick Beard.
Setting up Sick Beard
First go to the link of your Sick Beard setup – in case you forgot; it is the link shown on the “Web page” line when we enabled Sick Beard (you remembered that one as well, right? Otherwise go back to the “INSTALLED QPKG” window, click “SickBeard” and click the link there- see also this article).
The typical format is: http://<your NAS IP>:7071
Default Username and Password
Sick Beard will ask for username and password.
The default username is “admin” and the default password is also “admin” (both without the quotes of course).
Sick Beard – First time …
Note that Sick Beard does not actually download any TV Shows – it only retrieves and handles NZB files!
That’s why we hookup Sick Beard (get the NZB files) with SABnzbd (which will be doing the actual downloading).
Config – General
First go to “Config” and select the “General” option.
It’s not a bad idea to change username and password here (don’t forget to click “Save Changes“) … again, so that nobody messes with your stuff ;-) …
Config – Search Settings
Now go to “Config” → “Search Settings“.
Not sure if this was just my setup, but there seems to be a glitch in the settings for the SABnzbd;
The field “SABnzbd URL” should obviously read “http://localhost:8800/” … so if you see the below typo; please correct it if needed …
Sick Beard – Typo, bug , glitch?
Before Sick Beard can utilize SABnzbd, you will need to set the SABnzbd API Key (not to be confused with the API Key for NZB VIP services).
To get this key, we have to go back to SABnzbd and generate a key – this is done in the config screen of SABnzbd;
Click “Config” → “General” → “Generate New key” next to the “API Key” field → copy the new key to your clipboard (so we can paste it later) → make sure “Disable API-key” is unchecked!
SABnzbd – Get the API key for Sick Beard
Now that we have the API Key for SABnzbd, paste it in the “SABnzbd API Key” field of the Sick Beard config screen (see below).
Note: if you did set a username and password for SABnzbd (I did) then you do not need to enter them here …
Once you entered the API key, click the “Test SABnzbd” button – a message “Succes. Connected and authenticated” will show to confirm that it worked.
Click “Save Changes” when done.
Sick Beard – API Key for SABnzbd
Config – Search Providers
Next go to “Config” → “Search Providers” to set your NZB providers.
Check the providers you wish to use, drag the providers in the order you wish to use them, and click “Save Changes“.
Note: “Womble’s Index” en “Sick beard Index” are free – so at least use them as a backup!
Per provider you might need to do a few settings like username, password, and/or API key – for example; being a NZBMatrix VIP allows you to create a API Key – see the description in the SABnzbd section above on how to do this – it’s the same NZBMatrix API Key we generated there.
For each provider (select your provider from the drop-down) you wish to use; fill in the required fields and click “Save Changes” and continue to the next provider (if applicable).
SickBeard – Search providers
Config – Post Processing
Under this header you will find a lot of options – for SABnzbd leave the “Post-Processing” options alone … default “Keep original files” and “Rename episodes” is checked, the rest is unchecked. If you want the downloaded file/folder to be removed after post-processing (ie. after moving the downloaded file to you TV Series folder): uncheck “Keep Original Files“.
“Metadata” and “Episode naming” is something you’d like to take a look at; it allows you to download metadata for XBMC and name episodes and episode folders the way you like. I highly recommend looking into that – specially if you in a later phase decide to access the TV-Shows through XBMC in “TV Show” mode (versus “File” mode).
Config – Notifications
Again a section to play with – if you are looking for some kind of notifications (for example through Growl, then this is the place to explore).
Linking Sick Beard and SABnzbd
Most of this we have already done, but there are 2 little things left to do.
SABnzbd: Where is the post-processing script path
Sick Beard comes with a nice script for SABnzbd for the purpose of post processing – it appears (in v0.6.14 of SABnzbd anyway) that the current path to that script is empty and the automatic post processing does not kick-in as expected.
Go to SABnzbd, click “Config” → “Folders” → “Post-Processing Scripts Folder” and enter “/share/MD0_DATA/.qpkg/SickBeard/autoProcessTV” (without the quotes of course).
Don’t forget to click “Save Changes“.
SABnzbd – Set Post-Processing scripts path
Next we set the default post-processing script – which is optional, but I’d hate to go through each download and set it manually – this will trigger this particular script after a download completed successfully (for example moving the file to the right location).
In SABnzbd, click “Config” → “Categories” and select “sabToSickBeard.py” on the “default” catgeory line and click “Save” (some fine tuning could be done here).
SABnzbd – Select the default post-processing script
Sick Beard: Set username and password for the post-processing script
The next step is a little trickier … we need to edit the config file for post-processing, and the only way I found was by accessing this file through SSH. To be able to access your QNAP through SSH, you will first need to make sure this service is enabled.
Open the QNAP Administration page, on the left under “Home” click “Network Services” → “Telnet / SSH” and make sure “Allow SSH connection” is checked. Click “Apply” if you had to make a change. SSH access is now enabled (you can turn it off again later when done doing these minor changes).
- Windows users
Use a SSH program like my personal preference PuTTY (direct download link) or an equally good alternative called WINSCP, and go to the IP address of your QNAP using the username “admin” and the password you defined during setup of your QNAP.
- MacOS X users
If you’re a MacOS X user; Simply open a Terminal window (under “Applications” → “Utilities“) and type on the command-line: “ssh admin@<ip of your QNAP>” (without the quotes) and press enter. <ip of your QNAP> should of course be replaced by the IP address of your QNAP, for example: ssh firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Linux users
Linux users probably do something similar as MacOS X users; open a shell window and use the SSH command.
Once logged in through SSH we need to make our way to the config file and edit it.
In this example I use VI, which is what I’m used to, but I’m very aware that it might not be the easiest editor to work with if you have never touched VI before. A better tool would have been “nano” but it’s not installed on your QNAP by default.
The content of autoProcessTV.cfg will now be opened and can be edited:
host = localhost
port = 7071
(you will probably see lines with a “~” below this text – this is just to indicate that there is nothing there, so don’t worry about that ;-))
Now you will need to enter your username and password of Sick Beard – this can be done by using your arrow keys to go to the position where you’d like to type (for example after “username =”). Since you want to add press “a” first and then type your text (username).
Press “Esc” when done with a particular line and the use the arrow keys again to move to the next position (i.e. after “password =”) and press “a” again and type your text.
When done with that one, save the file by pressing the “Esc” key once and after that typing “wq” and press ENTER.
If typing go haywire on you …
Press the “Esc” button and type “q!” (quit and ignore changes) followed by pressing ENTER and simply retry this procedure.
VI is not very intuitive so don’t feel bad if it doesn’t work out the first time …
After this you can exit SSH by typing “Exit“.
Preparing your existing Shows
Now it could of course be that you already have some shows stored – hypothetically speaking of course.
Before starting to use the Sick Beard and SABnzbd duo, I recommend to clean up your structure first, and when you’re just starting to play with the magic duo; make a copy of two or more shows in a separate location to play with – just in case you screw something up while playing.
Why cleaning up? Well, I found that doing a rescan of files afterwards can be time consuming, so you’d rather just avoid that to begin with.
Cleaning up …
I would start with cleaning up your filenames; make sure they have proper names.
My little free program “Name My TV Series” (available for Windows, Linux, and MacOS X) can be of assistance there.
A proper folder structure is also needed. You can either choose to define your own (in the post-processing options) or by simply adding a show to Sick Beard which will create a folder (Series name) with sub-folders (seasons).
A typical structure would be:
Show1 - 01x01 - titel1
Show1 - 01x02 - titel2
Show1 - 01x03 - titel3
Show1 - 02x01 - titel1
Show2 - 01x01 - titel1
Show2 - 01x02 - titel2
Show2 - 01x03 - titel3
Show2 - 02x01 - titel1
Snatching us some shows
We’re almost there … well, we need to add our shows …
I’ll illustrate two basic examples, it’s up to you to play around with all the options.
About Folders and such …
One basic idea that threw me off in the beginning was how Sick Beard looks at folders and files.
When Sick Beard asks for a folder, it will either place or expect the folders for a TV-series in that folder. So basically, you want to provide the folder that contains the folders of your series, not the folder of the specific TV-series you have in mind.
So let’s assume you have the share “Multimedia” on your QNAP with the folder “TVSeries” and you have in that folder a folder for the TV Series “Smallville“, “Haven” and say “Stargate SG-1“.
Now when adding an existing show, Sick Beard will want you to provide it the path “\shares\Multimedia\TVSeries” – it will then look for sub folders to identify potential TV-Series. Sick Beard will see the folders “Smallville“, “Haven” and “Stargate SG-1” and will try to identify them as TV-shows.
Add an EXISTING show
Before you start … you did read the part on how to prepare existing shows … right?
Let’s say you already have some episodes of your favorite TV show and this show is stored on your QNAP in the share “Multimedia” in the folder “TVSeries“:
- Windows (UNC): \\YourQNAP\Multimedia\TVSeries
- MacOS X (if mounted): /Volumes/Multimedia/TVSeries
- Path on Linux or your QNAP: /share/Multimedia/TVSeries
Note that the path for Linux users strongly depends on how the share has been mounted and might look very different from the example!
The easiest way is to have Sick Beard scan the folders in that path (as mentioned in the “About folders and such …” tip).
Click “Home” → “Add Shows” → “Add Existing Shows“.
Sick Beard – Add Existing Shows
A new window will open titled “Existing Show“.
Click the “New” button and in the upcoming file dialog browse to “share” in which you will find your QNAP shares (only needed if you haven’t added this “main” folder before – if you have already added it before Sick Beard will identify the folders it doesn’t know).
Go to the share you’re looking for (“Multimedia” in our example) and select the folder that holds your TV Shows (“TVSeries” in our example) and click “OK“.
Sick Beard will now scan this folder for sub-folders – it will assume that these sub-folders represent TV Shows. The scan might take a few seconds, but when done Sick Beard will present you a list of found folders.
Note: If you already did this step before on this particular location, then folders that have been identified before and that have been added as a show will not re-appear. So don’t be worried if you don’t see the previously added shows.
Sick Beard – Scanned your TV-Series folder
Now you can already do a first sweep by unchecking the folders that you think Sick Beard should not touch.
Click “Submit” to proceed when done checking/unchecking.
After clicking “Submit” Sick Beard will try to find the folder name as the TV Show name on TVDB (which is also being use for the Name My TV Series application). In a few simple steps your show can be added; pick the show found by Sick Beard – clicking the title in the “Search results” box will open a new browser window with the TVDB info so you can verify if this is really the TV-Show you’re looking for.
After selecting the correct show, click “Add Show” and you’re done.
If you like you can click the “Next” button instead; if you’d like to customize a few things (although the default settings typically will do just fine).
If you’d like to skip this folder, since it could not be found, or whatever reason, click “Skip Show“.
If multiple folders were found and checked, then Sick Beard will proceed to the next item until it’s done. When clicking “Home” you will see something like this:
Sick Beard – Retrieving Meta Data
After a while – depending on your Internet connection, etc – you can click the “Home” button again to refresh, and the screen might look something like this:
Sick Beard – All Meta Data has been retrieved
Your show has been added, and by clicking on the show title, you can see the details (what episodes you have, which ones you’re missing, and which ones are to be expected).
Adding a NEW show
Adding a new show will look very familiar; again go to “Home” → “Add Show“, but now select “Add New Show“, enter the title of the show you’re looking for, click “Search“, check the right one in case multiple series are found, click “Add Show“.
So … now you’re set;
You’ll notice that communication between Sick Beard and SABnzbd will work smoothly.
You might want to do some fine tuning once everything is up and running, and you might have to relearn on how to use XBMC – I know I did (always used to use the “Files” mode).
Both Sick Beard and SABnzbd have an awful lot of additional features, including but not limited to scheduling, etc. Play around with those settings if you like.
Keep in mind that this article was not written to promote piracy!
Rather as an experiment or as a possible PVR replacement. Always keep our Disclaimer in mind!