Kristopher Kubicki of Anandtech.com has gone to some considerable work and effort to document the building of a SuSE Linux-based MythTV PVR using a Hauppauge WinTV PVR-250MCE for the TV tuner card. He summarizes:
And finally, after several hours of turmoil and despair, we have installed and tested our Linux device. Its far from perfect - we cannot readily work with digital TV broadcasts, for example. What we do have is a machine that will readily emulate all of the basic Windows MCE or TiVo functionality at a reduced cost - and we can hack/configure/manipulate it to any extent that we wish to in the future. On the downside, it did take us over four hours to set up and install everything.Me? I'd buy a Tivo and be done with it :)
Other drawbacks of MCE devices include the inability to play back the video content on anything but other MCE devices, and the inability to re-render the recorded files into a different format to save space. With MythTV and Linux, on the other hand, we can capture, re-encode and playback on completely separate machines, even Windows systems. For the truly crafty, Myth allows us to connect the front end of a different machine to the first MythTV system and play video files/streams in that manner.
Building a Linux PVR [Anandtech.com]