Daily Archives: April 20, 2021

ONdigital User Interface

Switch On….

ONdigital was the first Digital Terrestrial platform in the world, and was to be a subscription service to compete with Sky analogue. Sadly it wasn’t to last as ONdigital entered administration in April 2002. The boxes themselves continued to work with the FTA Freeview service until 2011 when the transmissions were broadcast using 8K FFT, which the ONdigital boxes did not support.

The ONdigital guide software was developed using Canal+ Mediahighway middleware, alongside the NHEG5 virtual machine for digital text services. Mediaguard was used for the conditional access system.

Now & Next

ONdigital

Appears when you change channels, it cannon be called up by a button on the remote, you would use the Info button for now & next

The red dot means no signal

Ondigital channel list

Pressing OK brings up a channel list, that can be used to jump to certain channels

Ondigital Info

Pressing info gives a now and next view on what’s currently being broadcast, you can select different channels but can only see now & next.

Main Menu

Ondigital Main Menu

The main menu

Setting the Timer

ONDigital timer

ONdigital lacked an EPG, it had only now & next and that was it. If you wanted to record a program in the future you had to manually set it. ONdigital did provide a monthly magazine that gave TV listings for all of their channels which could be used to track the TV listings.

Its worth mentioning that Teletext, BBC, ntl, and ONview (ONdigital) offered MHEG service that broadcasted a TV guide, but this could not be used to set a reminder.

Favourite Channels

Favourite channels worked differently comparted to Sky or cable, you could mark as many channels as you wanted as a favorite, symbolized by a heart icon. However when the favorite channels settings was on, the Chan+ and Chan- would only scroll through favorite channels list only.

ONdigital favourite channels

Whilst we are here, might as well look at the ONdigital era channel list, it seems the original owner never bothered to rescan the box after Freeview launched, and did not rescan it either after ONdigital rebranded to ITV Digital.

Parental Lock

ONdigital parental lock

Not much to see since I don’t know the smartcard PIN, but from memory you can lock certain channels.

Update: Managed to find the default PIN code, now we can see whats in the menu

Here you can lock individual channels from being accessed by marking them with the lock symbol, you can then press the green button to activate the locks. When you try to enter a channel you will be prompted to enter the PIN number to unlock.

You can change the PIN code to whichever you choose.

If you change the PIN back to 0000, the menu option changes to Enter new parental code instead of change parental code, and you are prompted to set a PIN code.

Viewing Preferences

ONdigital viewing preferences
ONdigital box settings
ONdigital tv video settings
ONdigital modem settings

Getting Started

ONdigital getting started
ONdigital channel list
ONdigital channel list
ONdigital add channels

ONdigital Updates

ONdigital updates
ONdigital smartcard

Smart Card data, shows when the current entitlements expire. it appears this card was in use until the demise of ITV Digital

ONdigital postbox

The postbox, designed to receive broadcast messages, this was never used

Technical Information

Ondigital technical information
ONdigital signal strength

Signal strength, you have to manually enter the channel number to find out

ONdigital signal strength
Ondigital Nokia

Information relating to the manufacturer, software version and hardware revision

ONdigital technical information

Hidden information menu, not much to do except to view certain debug information

Guide: ONMail

ONMail

Pressing the guide button brings up this menu

ONMail

ONmail was ONdigital’s email service that could be accessed through the set-top box, using a remote and a receiver that plugs into the serial port on the ONdigital box.

ONMail

A PIN is required to access the service, since the PIN number on the card is unknown, we are unable to progress past this point.

ONMail

Not that we’d get any further, the servers were shut off shortly after ONdigital entered administration.

ONMail
ONMail
ONMail

Update: Managed to get further

Misc

The menu from a Bush IDTV, here you can see some changes. Various references to ONdigital have been removed with option six being renamed to subscription information, and the ON logo being removed from the top left of the screen. This must be due to the change from ONdigital to ITV digital