Sickbeard Fork: Feature Summary

Note: Since this post was written, TvTumbler was born. Going forward, all new development will be in TvTumbler.

Well I’ve been working on and off on Sickbeard for the last few weeks, and the list of additions is starting to grow. So it’s probably time for a summary of the main additions.

Sickbeard Integrated Torrent ClientIntegrated Torrent Client

Uses libtorrent-rasterbar to provide a very simple (but very fast!) integrated torrent client. Manages queueing, priority, seeding, and deleting of torrent automatically. No need to use blackhole or watch dirs (but of course you can use those if you wish). If libtorrent rasterbar is not available on your system, this feature simply won’t show. You can continue to use your existing torrent client without issue.

Custom RSS Torrent feedCustom Torrent RSS Providers

Add one or more custom torrent providers. Any torrent source with an RSS feed should work for this.
See this post for more info (including some recommended feeds).


New Torrent Search Providers

I’ve added all the useful/reliable torrent providers I know as search options (at least the ones that you don’t need invites/accounts for). These are:

  • ShowRSS: This appears to be very reliable, but their show naming is not always smart, and their backlog can be limited.
  • Kickass Torrents: Includes solid backlog support.
  • DailyTvTorrents: Again, appears reliable, and includes solid backlog support (thanks to lylej for the heads-up on this one).(sadly, this is now gone)
  • BBC iPlayer support (via the perl get_iplayer script): See here for instructions on how to set this up.
  • Support for magnet links.
  • PublicHD support: No backlog yet, their RSS is *extremely* limited.
  • And additionally, EZRSS has been “fixed” so that it will continue to work (by using the twitter feed, tpb feed, and a feedburner feed as backups) even when the site goes down (which happens a lot!)


Custom Scene Names

The edit show page now includes a box into which you can type ‘custom’ show names (or ‘Scene Names’). These will be searched for in addition to the tvdb show name. This is incredibly useful for picking up on minor variations in show names.


Custom Scene Numbering

Anyone who has used sickbeard for any length will know how annoying this is: The scene decides that the first episode was a double, but tvdb (from which sickbeard gets its numbering) thinks otherwise. Or they include a special in the numbering. Or they disagree on season numbers. Or they call the “special” episode “SxE00″, where tvdb calls it “S00E56″.

Well this gives you the facility to work around this problem, without having to manually “fix” everything sickbeard downloads (or tolerate the duplicates it creates). You can now manually enter a season/episode number for each episode, and this is what sickbeard will search for when trawling the internet. And it will renumber it correctly once it’s downloaded to your PVR.

The code will also regularly check for the known variations between scene and tvdb numbering – so in most cases you probably won’t even need to correct the episode numbers, sickbeard will do so itself (but of course it will respect your numbering if you have specified it manually).


Installation Instructions

These now have a wiki page of their own. See How to Install Sickbeard for Torrents on github.

And I do believe that this time, I’m really finished. These are the main things that have annoyed me about sickbeard since I’ve started using it, and it took far more work than it should have to actually fix them (all-in, I’ve probably spent a full day on this). If I feel tempted to add features to this in the future, I think I’ll start by doing a re-write: it will save time in the long run (and imo sickbeard is badly in need of a rewrite).

As always, the full source is available from


Update/Please Note: I don’t intend to add any more features to this – so please stop asking for them! Sickbeard is, as far as I’m concerned, broken – and I don’t have the time to fix it, or write a replacement.
I will generally keep this up to date however, until I find a better system (or actually do the rewrite).

(if someone else wishes to start a rewrite however, please let me know – I may be able to contribute)

Update (Sept 2013): I’m doing the rewrite: TvTumbler, an addon for XBMC with the same basic functionality. I’d encourage any new users (who also use XMBC) to try TvTumbler instead.

Having Issues?: Please use the github issue tracker (and include a debug log, or your issue will likely be ignored)

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  1. #1 by A on September 27, 2012 - 7:55 am

    How do I do to replace sickbeard on my Synology with your version ?

    Sorry for the noob question.

    • #2 by Bricky on September 27, 2012 - 9:29 am

      Hi “A”,

      Assuming you have shell access (ssh), it’s the same as it would be on mac/linux:

      First, stop sickbeard. Easiest way to do that is through the gui.
      Then (assuming it’s installed in /home/user/my-sickbeard-install, change as appropriate),

      cd /home/user
      mv my-sickbeard-install sickbeard-backup
      git clone my-sickbeard-install
      cp sickbeard-backup/sickbeard.db my-sickbeard-install
      cp sickbeard-backup/config.ini my-sickbeard-install
      python my-sickbeard-install/


  2. #3 by A on September 27, 2012 - 7:56 am

    The Sick beard packages is downloaded from here.

  3. #4 by A on September 27, 2012 - 11:17 am

    Thanks for the quick reply.
    I get “-ash: git: not found” when I do “git clone my-sickbeard-install”

    I found this info regarding 3:d party SW for Synology NAS.

  4. #6 by A on September 27, 2012 - 11:28 am

    Thanks for getting me started :) I was missing the git application. I think I got it to work now :)

  5. #7 by A on September 27, 2012 - 11:39 am

    I got this error when doing as you described using git.

    Traceback (most recent call last):
    File “sickbeard/”, line 49, in
    from sickbeard.webserveInit import initWebServer
    File “/usr/local/var/sickbeard/sickbeard/”, line 26, in
    from sickbeard.webserve import WebInterface
    File “/usr/local/var/sickbeard/sickbeard/”, line 31, in
    from Cheetah.Template import Template
    ImportError: No module named Cheetah.Template

    I’ll try with the zipball

  6. #8 by Bricky on September 27, 2012 - 11:57 am

    The previous package you had probably had Cheetah included in sickbeard (it usually woudn’t be, and you’d install it separately).

    Probably the easiest way to fix that is to copy the Cheetah folder from the previous version you had (it’d probably be in the lib folder).


  7. #9 by A on September 27, 2012 - 12:47 pm


    There are no Cheetah folder in the old sickbeard folder.

    The only Cheetah folder I’ve is located in “/usr/local/python26/lib/python2.6/site-packages/Cheetah”


  8. #10 by Bricky on September 27, 2012 - 2:43 pm

    @Anders: in that case the easiest thing is probably to just restart the NAS. Whatever startup script your previous package installed probably also “fixed” the python path to include that dir – and would do so again with a restart.

    Failing that, you’re probably better off to talk to the person who created that package. I have no experience with either the Synology OS, or it’s packaging format – and your issue here is not with this fork.


  9. #11 by A on September 27, 2012 - 5:53 pm

    Thanks for your help and your suggestions.

  10. #12 by Chewbacca on October 4, 2012 - 6:48 pm


    Thanks for your fork. It works like a charm. I’m now able to find more easily my tv shows.
    You says that the main annoying things of sick beard are now fixed, but I think there are still 2 of them :
    – email notifications (i would like to get an email when a new episode is snatched)
    – non-English language support (it should be possible to add a free search field for each tv show where you type in the language or search string you want, and sick beard would search with the name of the show and this string)

    • #13 by Bricky on October 4, 2012 - 10:55 pm

      Appreciate the suggestions :)

      – the languages thing would be a considerable undertaking I’m afraid. I’m not even sure how it could work. (And defo a rewrite would be the first step I think)
      – the email thing can probably be done with a custom post-processing script. Take a look at the extra_scripts setting in You just need to write a simple email script and add it here. (Although I could see those emails getting very annoying – might make more sense to email on failure?)


    • #14 by Matt on July 26, 2013 - 10:50 pm

      for what its worth. I use WatchDirectory to notify me when a new file, of a specific type, is completed in a given directory. this way it emails me when there is a new tv show, vs a new movie, etc.

      would like to hear if anyone else uses another tool

  11. #15 by de on October 6, 2012 - 7:47 pm

    Just got your fork, but when starting…:

    File “”, line 42, in
    import sickbeard
    File “/root/Sick-Beard/sickbeard/”, line 33, in
    from providers import ezrss, tvtorrents, btn, nzbmatrix, nzbsrus, newznab,
    omble, newzbin, nzbs_org_old, showrss, kat
    File “/root/Sick-Beard/sickbeard/providers/”, line 21, in
    from bs4 import BeautifulSoup
    File “/root/Sick-Beard/lib/bs4/”, line 29, in
    from .builder import builder_registry
    File “/root/Sick-Beard/lib/bs4/builder/”, line 4, in
    from bs4.element import (
    File “/root/Sick-Beard/lib/bs4/”, line 5, in
    from bs4.dammit import EntitySubstitution
    File “/root/Sick-Beard/lib/bs4/”, line 270
    smart_quotes_re = b”([\x80-\x9f])”
    SyntaxError: invalid syntax

    • #16 by Bricky on October 6, 2012 - 8:02 pm

      @de: what version of python are you running? This error is from within BeautifulSoup, and I think it requires 2.6 or later.
      (python --version will give you the version number)

  12. #17 by Stephan on October 14, 2012 - 5:03 am


    Just cloned your repo and started up sickbeard but for some reason i cant seem to see ezrss, showrss and kat in the search providers screen, any ideas why?

  13. #18 by Stephan on October 14, 2012 - 5:08 am

    Figured out I needed to switch on ‘Search for torrents’ :D

  14. #19 by HaraldB on October 17, 2012 - 6:15 am

    Hey Great work

    I really appreciate the work you have done here..
    while you’r at it.. is there any change of you or somebody else submitting a init script for debain?

  15. #20 by Nanoshark on November 13, 2012 - 7:53 pm

    Thank you soo much for the fork, really appreciate your work.

    Just one question, have you removed showrss since writing this post?
    I see, thepiratebay, … But no showrss.
    I git cloned just 2 days ago.

    Also is there an option for donating to you?
    Your work really saved a lot of time for me.

    • #21 by Bricky on November 13, 2012 - 11:05 pm

      @Nanoshark: thanks for the comments. But I wonder are you using this fork? (this fork *doesn’t* support, tpb etc.). The only supported torrent sites are the ones shown in the image in the post.

      (Config -> Help & Info -> Source should give you a link to the fork you’re running)


  16. #22 by Zilexa on November 16, 2012 - 11:41 am

    Hi Bricky, I completely miss the whole point of your build. I have been using RSS/torrents (mostly via ShowRSS) for a very long time via uTorrent. Looking forward to switch to Sickbeard (since I might switch to XBMCBuntu or OpenElec instead of Windows).

    But WTF why the hell doesn’t sickbeard support Showrss and KTA by default!??? or integrate your code in their build?
    Dont get me wrong I LOVE your initiative.

  17. #23 by otkaz on November 26, 2012 - 1:33 pm

    Thanks so much for this fork. Its been running great for me. One other thing that annoys me about sickbeard is the use of blackhole or I guess I mean the lack of transmission controls. Would be great to see you add this. I found another fork that has it
    but I like KAT and your custom scene names too much to switch. Would love to see you pull this into your fork.

  18. #24 by lylej on November 28, 2012 - 9:16 am

    Hi, thanks for a great fork.

    Another great provider with a very good backlog for all kinds of quality is They have various api’s too.

    It would be awesome if you could add in this search provider.

  19. #25 by lylej on November 28, 2012 - 12:42 pm

    • #26 by Bricky on February 18, 2013 - 7:31 am

      Decided to implement this one in the end – thanks for the headsup!

  20. #27 by heath on December 24, 2012 - 4:55 am

    First of all, thanks for doing this. My question is how to get this up and running on my Windows 8 machine… i can’t for the life of me find any kind of installer or the like… can you possibly point me in that direction?


  21. #28 by rod on January 5, 2013 - 9:59 am

    First of all LOVE THIS VERSION!!! it work great!!!
    is there any chance that i change the kickasstorrent address to as is blocked over here!



  22. #29 by Bricky on January 8, 2013 - 9:41 am

    @lylej: I think I had a look at this in the past and decided that there would be too many false positives (not entirely sure though, perhaps it was a different site). For the present I simply don’t have the time to add this (or indeed the inclination, see the “Please Note” above). However if I do return to this at any stage, this will likely be one of the first things I’ll look at. Thanks!

    @heath: I’m not entirely sure. The “standard” sickbeard comes as an .exe for windows, because it’s much easier to distribute it like that, but it should be possible to install this on windows the same way one would on *nix, by installing python, git, etc. first. A quick google turned up this:, hth.

    @rod: change the url in line 45 of sickbeard/providers/
    If the mirror is the same as everything should just work. (and any updates will keep your changes). hth

  23. #30 by Bricky on January 8, 2013 - 9:49 am

    @Zilexa: sickbeard’s real strength is in moving/renaming/grouping downloaded files, and keeping track of what is needed/due. Agree otherwise though.

    @otkaz: I actually looked into this. Well actually my plan was to build a torrent client directly into sickbeard (via libtorrent, or possibly libTransmission). What stopped me at the time was the need for native compiled code (sickbeard is pure-python at present, which has many advantages). And now I simply wouldn’t do it because a rewrite would make much more sense.

  24. #31 by massimo on January 23, 2013 - 6:27 am

    Hi, I’ve been using your fork on my mediaplayer, and it is really a joy!

    However, couple of questions, just to help me understand better:

    1) showRss: it seems that I never get a result out of it: besides enabling it in the search providers page, is it anything else I need to do? (I’ve tried searching for New Girl 2×13, that I know it’s there, but no luck)

    2) ezrss twitter backup: how does it work? Does it kick in only if ezrss is down? I’m asking because searching for NG2x13 (as above) failed also on ezrss, and ezrss is up, not publishing the episode, while is was properly tweeted when it came out.
    In case, would it be possible to switch the order, making it look first at twitter?

    3) Custom scenes eludes me, probably because I may not have understood it’s purpose. I mean, I’m trying to use it to filter out search results, but maybe I’m wrong about it. For instance, looking again for NG2x13, I got several results from KAT, and SB downloads the first valid one. Since I would like to have it downloading the second one (x264-LOL release) I typed the x264 LOL in the custom scene names, but I still got the first one to be downloaded. In the log, I see that there are 2 matching performed between the list of retrieved names and a) the SB provided one (New Girl 2×13) plus b) the “custom name” joined to SB name; the first is succesfull, second fails, but the retrived result seems to be considered usable all the same. Am I completely missing the point of the feature?

    Thanks a lot!


    • #32 by Bricky on January 23, 2013 - 9:27 am


      1. showrss works very well generally – particularly for mainstream shows. That particular show and episode both appear to be ok on showrss, so I’m not sure why it wouldn’t have worked. The debug log in sickbeard will tell you what happened however (Logs & Errors -> View Log -> debug).

      2. EZRSS twitter backup hasn’t worked for the last few months, as twitter changed (actually *removed*) their rss feed. I put a temporary change in place today which should get it working in a limited way again, but long-term the likelihood is that we’ll need to use twitter’s API. See Isellen’s comments here:

      btw: I don’t think ezrss is working, at least not for me. EZTV is fine, but ezrss is showing results from September.

      And yes, if the twitter feed works and proves more reliable, I’ll make it possible to *prefer* it over ezrss.

      3. What you’re doing here is likely to cause some problems. Lots of them in fact! Custom scene names are used only to give alternate names that may be used for a series.

      Consider for example the series “Don’t Trust the Bitch in Apartment 23″. If sickbeard were to search for that name, it would likely miss several (valid) torrents. So you can add custom scene names of “Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23″, “Apartment 23″, and maybe some other variations, to tell sickbeard to also search for these.

      What you’ve done is told sickbeard that “x264 LOL” is an alternate name for the series “NG”.

      • #33 by massimo on January 23, 2013 - 9:53 am


        1) I’ll post you a log as soon as I get home
        2) agreed: by “working”, I meant that the site is up, but definitely not up-to-date. May this prove useful?
        3) My bad :) Would it be possible to do what I originally intended, that is sorta filter out the results? (“No” is a reasonable answer to that).

        Thanks again

      • #34 by Massimo on January 23, 2013 - 3:20 pm

        Here’s the log portion (KAT was disabled in search)

        (edited to put log in a link)

      • #35 by Bricky on January 23, 2013 - 3:43 pm

        (best not to post logs in the comments, it destroys them for others – I’ll edit your comment shortly and link to the logs).

        What you’ve posted here is the log from a manual search – it doesn’t show either the backlog search, or the parsing of the rss feed.

        I tried it here with the same settings and it worked perfectly (*only* showrss enabled, same show, same episode).

  25. #36 by Massimo on January 23, 2013 - 4:47 pm

    Bricky :
    (best not to post logs in the comments, it destroys them for others – I’ll edit your comment shortly and link to the logs).
    What you’ve posted here is the log from a manual search – it doesn’t show either the backlog search, or the parsing of the rss feed.
    I tried it here with the same settings and it worked perfectly (*only* showrss enabled, same show, same episode).

    Guess I need to quote :)
    Ok, true, that’s the outcome of a manual search.
    Then, come the really noob question: how do I perform a backlog search? Setting an episode from S1 (same show, it’s my guinea pig :) ) to wanted, seems to set all episodes to snatched

    • #37 by Bricky on January 24, 2013 - 6:44 pm

      Backlog happens automatically by itself. (once a day I think, but I could well be wrong). You can manually trigger it also in Manage -> Backlog Overview.

      I think the backlog will fall back to download an entire series if it can’t find the episode you want, and there’s a series download available – that’s probably what happened to your S1 episode.

      (again, this’ll be apparent if you look through the debug log)

      • #38 by massimo on January 25, 2013 - 5:35 am

        Thanks again. Yes, I guess you are correct: tried with a backlog search for some S2 eps, and just those were added to transmission.

        Now I’ll dive in subtitles handling :)

  26. #39 by massimo on February 1, 2013 - 4:41 am

    Hi, me again :)

    I know you stated you will not develop any more on this, but I’m asking for a word of advice.

    Recently, showRSS started providing links to TPB; download then fails in my case, ’cause the direct link will not work. In fact, in the lohs I got that SB finds a suitable result, but the dl of the .torrent file fails due to timeout.

    Would it be possible to implement the support for a TPB proxy?
    If so, what do I need to look into?

    • #40 by Bricky on February 1, 2013 - 8:54 am

      I think the easiest way would be to override the _get_title_and_url from providers.generic.GenericProvider in ShowRssProvider. The override could fix the urls to point to the TPB proxy.

      The whole thing could be as simple as:

      def _get_title_and_url(self, item):
          (title, url) = super(generic.GenericProvider, self)._get_title_and_url(item)
          if url is not None:
              url = url.replace('', '')
          return (title, url)

      (completely untested code of course, so usual disclaimers apply)


      • #41 by massimo on February 1, 2013 - 10:42 am

        I’ll give it a try and let you know the results (not in the next few days, I’m afraid :) )

  27. #42 by Massimo on February 1, 2013 - 2:26 pm

    massimo :
    I’ll give it a try and let you know the results (not in the next few days, I’m afraid )

    I have not tried yet, but I won’t expect that to work: reason for this is that the returned url in in showRSS format, like……. that does not allow that easy substitution.

    • #43 by Bricky on February 2, 2013 - 10:26 am

      It seems that lots of links from showrss are broken now. Some redirect to tpb, but others redirect to html pages with ads!

      I’ve pushed some changes which should get eztv working again (albeit without backlog). Try those for now, and we’ll see if showrss get their act together.

      • #44 by Massimo on February 3, 2013 - 2:47 pm

        Great, thanks.
        I’m sorry to take more of your time, but something weird is happening: it seems that once SB is done postprocessing the folder with the files, it removes even the folder itself.
        Is that normal behavior? I guess not, sice after that the postprocessor complains that the folder is missing.
        Folder is /.expanded/series (notice the dot)

      • #45 by Bricky on February 3, 2013 - 6:37 pm

        Hi Massimo,

        Almost impossible to even guess without at least seeing the debug log – but really: I’m not the person to ask about this – outside of the code I’ve worked on, I certainly know no more about sickbeard than the standard support channels would, so you’ll likely get a better response from them.

  28. #46 by massimo on February 4, 2013 - 6:25 am

    Bricky :
    Hi Massimo,
    Almost impossible to even guess without at least seeing the debug log – but really: I’m not the person to ask about this – outside of the code I’ve worked on, I certainly know no more about sickbeard than the standard support channels would, so you’ll likely get a better response from them.

    You are of course correct.
    Here’s my finding (last comment is mine). Sharing just in case :)

  29. #47 by Kristiaan PIpijn on February 9, 2013 - 9:48 am


    Great fork!
    Followed the instructions, installation was easy, running smoothly for a day now! Thanks!

    Quick question: after downloading (from torrent), SickBeard renames the episode and moves it to the shows folder. Is it normal behavior that it moves it into the shows main folder instead of the right seasons folder for that episode? (flatten folders settings is unchecked)

    • #48 by Bricky on February 9, 2013 - 12:04 pm

      Hi Kristiaan,

      I wonder are you using “Custom Naming” in your post processing? If so you’ll need to put “Season %S/” at the start of the pattern.

      (If you google this you’ll find lots of people have the same issue)


      • #49 by Kristiaan PIpijn on March 6, 2013 - 6:24 pm

        Thanks again!
        I realized later that this could be a common problem…

        Another question (to which I didn’t find an answer to online :-):
        on top it says ‘there is a newer version available – Update now’
        is it safe to do so, or does it change the sickbeard installation to the default sickbeard installation?

        tx for the help!

      • #50 by Bricky on March 6, 2013 - 7:30 pm

        Yup, it’s safe to update (it will pull from the correct repo) :)

  30. #51 by Richard on February 10, 2013 - 11:39 am

    Hi There

    Having some issues with Sickbeard (won’t download a few shows even although I know they are available at Think there are some naming issues..) so was thinking about switching to this version.

    If I install this, do I need to set everything up again from scratch (all my shows, settings etc) or can I import from current sickbeard install??

    Thanks much.

    • #52 by Bricky on February 11, 2013 - 10:07 am

      Hi Richard,

      If you retain your config.ini and sickbeard.db, you won’t need to set up the shows again.

      Is a NZB site? Just be aware that this fork is primarily focused on torrents, I doubt anyone else uses it for newznabs. (The fork only exists to address the terrible torrent support in sickbeard).


      • #53 by Richard on February 11, 2013 - 4:31 pm

        Great! Got it up and running yesterday. And sorry. Meant not Stupid autocorrect!

        One question though. If I set it up to use nzbs/usenet and torrents, which does it search first?? I’d like to be able to search usenet for the nzb file and then only use torrents if sb fails to find the tv show on usenet.

        Thanks again!!

      • #54 by Bricky on February 11, 2013 - 5:10 pm

        Hi Richard,
        I suspect it would prefer usenet, but I can’t really be sure.
        (I’ve never used usenet for downloads)

  31. #55 by MeD on February 20, 2013 - 7:26 am

    Hi there, first I want to say thanks for this, and if I get it going I will really enjoy it. I am getting the “module Cheetah needed” but when I try to get cheetah it tells me I already have it……
    I am not sure what I am doing wrong or where so I will go step by step what I did while following your instructions above…

    first changed my-install/sickbeard to sickbeard-backup
    then still in the my-install folder i ran the git line.
    then I copied the config and db files to the my-install/sickbeard folder
    then when i tried to do the python I got the following message,,,
    “The Python module Cheetah is required” I don’t find cheetah in the old sickbeard-backup anywhere so I did as suggested above and rebooted.

    Now my question is
    How do I start up the new one?

    the old one is in the package center and i just had to run it…. but that doesn’t work anymore

    I am currently using the sickbeard package from the on a synology NAS and it is working fine after I download the files manually. I am hoping to get your fork working and not have to do the manual part……

    Thanks for any help you can give :)

    • #56 by Bricky on February 20, 2013 - 9:05 am

      Hi MeD,

      Is it the Sickbeard package from this page you’re using?

      It creates a special python environment specifically for sickbeard, apparently in /usr/local/sickbeard/env/bin/python. And it creates a special “Sickbeard” user to run under. You’ll need to mimic this to get it started.

      Try the following command as a starting point (this will almost certainly need tweaks!)

      su - Sickbeard -c "PATH=/usr/local/sickbeard/bin:/usr/local/sickbeard/env/bin:/usr/local/python/bin:/usr/local/bin:/bin:/usr/bin:/usr/syno/bin /usr/local/sickbeard/env/bin/python /usr/local/sickbeard/share/SickBeard/ --config /usr/local/sickbeard/var/config.ini --datadir /usr/local/sickbeard/var/"

      Note that it looks like this package has separated the data from the source (the source seems to be in /usr/local/sickbeard/share/SickBeard/, whereas the data seems to be in /usr/local/sickbeard/var/. It’s probably best to keep it that way. So ensure that you have only changed the source in the /usr/local/sickbeard/share/SickBeard/ folder – leave the remainder alone (i.e. your git line would be something like git clone /usr/local/sickbeard/share/SickBeard).

      And please understand that I have no experience whatsoever with your NAS or its packaging format. It might make more sense to contact the developer of the package you’re using and ask them how to change the git source. (indeed I expect it’s a question they hear often!)


      • #57 by MeD on February 21, 2013 - 6:09 am

        Thanks for answering so quickly :)
        That is the package I have now.

        After reading through this, I am feeling it is a bit over my head, so I will have to wait until the weekend and have my nerd hubby take a look at it.

        I will let you know the outcome when we are through trying your suggestions.

        I do understand that you are only offering suggestions and that they may or may not work, and I do appreciate the time and effort :D

        Thanks very much

      • #58 by MeD on March 8, 2013 - 1:40 pm

        sorry, i haven’t been back to let you know how its going, but life has been crazy lately and we haven’t had a chance to work on this.

        If and when we get a chance, I will definitely let you know how it goes.

        Thanks so much.

    • #59 by MeD on May 30, 2013 - 3:47 am

      Hi, wanted to give you an update
      I used the new Sickbeard-Custom on my Synology NAS to install your fork and it is working GREAT :D

      My backlog is actually processing now that I have other sources as well.

      I want to say thanks for the time and effort you put in also.

      • #60 by Bricky on May 30, 2013 - 4:15 am

        Hey MeD, very pleased you got that working!
        I saw chat of that Sickbeard-Custom thing somewhere (probably on GitHub) – I’m so pleased that they implemented it!

      • #61 by Ramen on July 16, 2013 - 5:39 pm

        Hi MeD, can you please tell me how you got this fork running with the Synology Sickbeard-Custom? When I try install it on my Synology and enter into the fields what I think the fork details are, I keep getting an error message “Failed to install package, Incorrect fork”

  32. #62 by Fivos on March 7, 2013 - 7:15 am

    Can you please tell me if your fork works with raspberry pi? Any installation instructions?
    Thank you.

    • #63 by Bricky on March 7, 2013 - 8:12 am

      Hi Fivos,

      Yes, it should run nicely on a rpi. The install should be exactly the same as for the original sickbeard, but using the git url
      I’ll put some short instructions in the post shortly.

      • #64 by Fivos on March 7, 2013 - 2:54 pm

        Hello there,
        Thank you for your quick responce. I have managed to install Sickbeard on my rpi using the installation instructions above starting from para 3 as I already had python and cheetah installed.
        Is it possible to have Sickbeard automatic start up when I boot my raspi? Some scripts I found on the web do not seem to work.

      • #65 by Bricky on March 8, 2013 - 4:07 pm

        Hi Fivos,

        There’s an init script in the code – probably the ubuntu one would be closest to what you need. (Don’t think you mentioned what OS you’re running)

        Or you could probably just add /usr/bin/python /path/to/my-sickbeard-install/ -q -d --nolaunch to the /etc/rc.local file if you’d prefer.


  33. #66 by Fivos on March 10, 2013 - 5:08 pm

    Good Evening to you,
    Thank you for your help. Your suggestion works fine. Thank you again for your guidance.

  34. #67 by Tbar on March 20, 2013 - 11:01 pm

    First, would like to say great addition of SB. Love the additional sites you added. I’m new at this so I apologize for the noob question.

    I have successfully installed your version of SB, but I do not know how to link it to uTorrent in order to download the TV shows that I want. I have added the shows I want (Homeland and The Walking Dead to start).Can you please explain how this works? Even if it is with another program other than uTorrent I’m fine with it. I have looked online and cannot find anything that show’s me how (the only thing I found says that I should be able to select uTorrent as the “torrent method search” (I got this from ).

    Any help you can provide would be great! Thanks again for all the hard work!

    • #68 by Bricky on March 22, 2013 - 8:06 am

      Hi Tbar,

      In Config -> Search settings, you’ll need to put a path in the ‘Torrent Black Hole’ field (call this “folder A”). Sickbeard will then put whatever .torrent files it downloads in there.
      In utorrent (or whatever torrent program you wish), configure it to watch that same path (“folder A”) for .torrent files, and to place the downloaded result into another folder (call this “folder B”).
      Then in sickbeard Config -> Post Processing, put that download folder path (“folder B”) into the ‘TV Download Dir’ field, and check the ‘Scan and Process’ field.

      So, SB will download the .torrent file, putting it in folder A. uTorrent (which is watching this dir), will pick up the file, and download the associated result into folder B. Sickbeard, which is in turn watching folder B, will see the .avi files or whatever, and put them in the “Location” folder that you set up when you added the shows to SB.


      • #69 by Tbar on March 22, 2013 - 4:38 pm

        Thanks for the info! I will give it a try. Great work again!

  35. #70 by zilexa on March 24, 2013 - 6:28 am

    Hi Bricky. Have you considered moving away from Sickbeard and use Flexget instead? It seams to be the better choice for rss torrents automisation and after it has been setup its just a simple textfile you can manage.

    • #71 by Bricky on April 3, 2013 - 3:53 pm

      Hi Zilexa,
      Flexget is great (I occasionally dig through its code to see how they solve issues I’m having), but I couldn’t see myself dropping sb in favour of it.
      Basically if I do drop SB (and I’m getting closer and closer to that all the time), the likelihood is that I’ll build an xbmc addon to replace it.

  36. #72 by Johan on April 6, 2013 - 9:24 am

    Hi Bricky
    this is a neat fork! I just installed it on my qnap ts-412 just to inform you that this is doable too.

    thanx a lot!

  37. #73 by Angel on April 14, 2013 - 7:22 am

    Thank you so much for this. I really can’t understand why they don’t provide more torrent searches in the default version of sickbeard. I understand that usenet is their preferred way to have it used but that doesn’t mean other options are a bad thing.

  38. #74 by will on April 21, 2013 - 1:42 pm

    hi, i just installed in synology from ypur fork, but i can not see the new providers

  39. #75 by Bricky on April 29, 2013 - 3:01 pm

    @Johan: great to hear!
    @Angel: Agreed. I’d be inclined to call people up on the whole “usenet is better” thing also. Perhaps that was true in the past (and may still be true in the “standard” SB where torrents are, I think deliberately, ignored), but it no longer is true elsewhere/nowadays.

    In my experience at least, torrents provide a much better selection than usenet.

    @will: Are you installing over another installation? Perhaps it just needs to be restarted. If not, then you’ll need to provide me a *lot* more information before I can begin to debug :)

  40. #76 by ponq on April 30, 2013 - 9:20 am

    Hey Bricky, first of all: thanks a zillion for this great fork. It runs perfectly on my NAS (syn 413j). I am using a blackhole (transmission) for downloads. Snatching, downloading, moving and renaming all works flawlessly. It’s too good!

    However, I would like to be able to seed the downloaded file for a while. With how sickbeard currently works it moves the downloaded file, and I can no longer seed. For me, this would be solved if instead of moving the file sickbeard would just copy the file. I can then manually manage the downloaded/seeded files in transmission.

    Would this be easy to do? And if you don’t have time for this, understandably, could you give me some pointers on where to look in the code? I am no trained programmer, but I am sure with some pointers, google and common sense I could at least give it a shot.

    My goal:
    -add an option (under Settings) to either copy or move the files after downloading has finished.
    -based on that setting: move or copy the required files.

    Kind regards,


    • #77 by Bricky on April 30, 2013 - 9:25 am

      Hey ponq,

      It’s a bit obfuscated, but that setting is present already I think.
      In Config -> Post Processing, there’s a setting “Keep Original Files“. If you check that, then it will leave the original files in place and you can continue seeding.


      • #78 by ponq on April 30, 2013 - 9:33 am

        Doh!!! ;)

        Thanks Bricky

  41. #79 by AgentElephant on May 4, 2013 - 12:41 am

    Love this fork of sickbeard. its helped me out emensly. I understand that you dont want requests and I expect this to go unforfilled. If you are making a list of ideas to the future or even to pass on to someone else. The trusted sources option in the piratebay fork is useful. I currently just subscribe to trusted sources but this is an alternate idea.

    • #80 by Bricky on May 4, 2013 - 3:27 am

      How exactly would it work?

      Aside from (where in fact we already enforce “verified” torrents only), I can’t see where it could make any difference. All the torrent providers in this fork are considered “trusted” – I actually haven’t had a false positive since I created this fork.

      (We’d need a mechanism for deciding what’s “trusted” also of course, but it’s a moot point)

      Appreciate the feedback.

  42. #81 by kamakamadaun on May 4, 2013 - 4:27 pm

    I tried to use the custom rss feed.

    With bit-hdtv I get “empty torrent file when downloading first torrent in feed”.

    It seems fine when I open it in an rss reader.

    Any ideas?

    • #82 by Bricky on May 4, 2013 - 4:31 pm

      No idea what bit-hdtv is. What’s the url for the feed?

      (When adding a custom rss feed, sb attempts to verify it by downloading the first torrent file in the feed and checking if it’s really a valid torrent file. The error you’re getting is saying that it failed to do so)

  43. #83 by kamakamadaun on May 4, 2013 - 5:22 pm

    It is a nice private torrent site.
    Here is the rss output:

    I have changed the passkey. The torrents seem valid. You cannot download of course without the right passkey. If you tell me where I can send you a sample torrent or even an invite to the site if you want.

    • #84 by Bricky on May 4, 2013 - 6:34 pm

      No need for the passkey I think, it appears that the rss is a little messed up. There’s whitespace around the url in the “link” tag (there shouldn’t be, this is a fault with the rss feed).
      Could you try something for me? In the file sickbeard/providers/ on line 97, add a “strip()” call at the end, like so:

              if url:
                  url = url.replace('&','&').strip()
              return (title, url)

      If this fixes the issue, please let me know, and I’ll make this change in the master version.

      Thanks for your help

      • #85 by kamakamadaun on May 4, 2013 - 7:04 pm

        Unfortunately that didn’t help. I get the same error.

      • #86 by Bricky on May 4, 2013 - 7:22 pm

        Sorry, should’ve mentioned, you’ll need to restart sickbeard after you make the change.

        If that doesn’t fix it, post up the debug log from when you try to add the feed. (There should be explicit mention in there of why the torrent couldn’t be retrieved)

  44. #87 by kamakamadaun on May 4, 2013 - 7:56 pm

    I did do the restart before testing.

    By debug log do you mean something special or just the normal log?

    I get this:
    So it is not able to download the file it seems.

    I tried to wget the url as it is written in the log and it works fine.
    I noticed that for the filename wget creates it escapes the brackets as “\(” and “\[” and actually also the space as “\ “.
    But it seems for the retrieval url it only escapes the space with “%20″. Strip would escape the space or just remove it?
    Could that be a hint?

    • #88 by Bricky on May 4, 2013 - 8:19 pm

      By debug log, I mean “Logs & Errors” -> View Log, and then select “Debug” in the dropdown.
      But that probably isn’t necessary now, the spaces are more than likely the problem, as you suggested.

      “strip” will remove spaces at the beginning and end of the url (which certainly shouldn’t be there in the first place – this is an error in the rss feed), but not inside the url. I can’t find a spec which says how the url should be encoded (although admittedly I didn’t look very hard), but I would suspect that spaces should already be encoded as %20, and this is not being done in the feed either.

      One more attempt at fixing this one then. Again, on line 97:

              if url:
                  url = url.replace('&','&').strip().replace(' ', '%20')
              return (title, url)

      Let me know if this works, and we can look at fixing this in master.
      Thanks again.

      • #89 by kamakamadaun on May 4, 2013 - 8:35 pm

        Yatsy! That did the trick. No error.

        Next I tried to do a manual search with just showRSS and this custom feed enabled. No dice even if the show is in the feed:

        May-05 01:31:03 INFO SEARCHQUEUE-MANUAL-SEARCH :: Unable to find a download for The Big Bang Theory – 6×22 – The Proton Resurgence
        May-05 01:31:03 INFO SEARCHQUEUE-MANUAL-SEARCH :: Searching ShowRSS for The Big Bang Theory – 6×22 – The Proton Resurgence
        May-05 01:31:03 INFO SEARCHQUEUE-MANUAL-SEARCH :: Searching bit-hdtv for The Big Bang Theory – 6×22 – The Proton Resurgence
        May-05 01:31:03 INFO SEARCHQUEUE-MANUAL-SEARCH :: Searching for The Big Bang Theory – 6×22 – The Proton Resurgence
        May-05 01:31:03 INFO SEARCHQUEUE-MANUAL-SEARCH :: Searching for download for The Big Bang Theory – 6×22 – The Proton Resurgence

        Any clue for this problem?

      • #90 by Bricky on May 4, 2013 - 8:47 pm

        It could be spaces again (that feed is really messed up!), this time around the “title” tag. No way to know though without a debug log.

        Edit: I’ve pushed a change to master which should work around this and the url issue. If you have the opportunity it would probably be a good idea to contact the admins of that site and ask them to fix their rss feed also.

  45. #91 by kamakamadaun on May 5, 2013 - 7:51 am

    Bricky :
    It could be spaces again (that feed is really messed up!), this time around the “title” tag. No way to know though without a debug log.
    Edit: I’ve pushed a change to master which should work around this and the url issue. If you have the opportunity it would probably be a good idea to contact the admins of that site and ask them to fix their rss feed also.

    Sorry for making you spend time on this. It now seems to find and load the torrent correctly.
    But it appears the tracker doesn’t accept the passphrase method! Which on digging through the forum on this site is known. Really sorry about this. I just checked that the torrent loaded. Didn’t notice that it throws an error.
    It seems that at the moment noone has a working method to make it work.
    However there is one way. To replace the tracker URL with the one you get when you download manually.

    So the tracker needs to be changed from


    Where YYYYYYY is another key you can see in your manually downloaded torrents.

    I did that through which made the torrent work.

    I know this is probably not something you want to spend a lot of time on… But any chance to get a method for this?
    As before I can give you an invite if you want.

    • #92 by Bricky on May 5, 2013 - 8:32 am

      Thanks for getting back to me, and glad that the title workaround is ok.

      As regards fixing the torrents for this tracker: I’m afraid the answer is simply no. Working around their buggy RSS feed was even a step further than I would normally go, and what you’re asking would require writing a provider specifically for this (very broken!) site.

      You’re free to do this yourself of course. Or you may be able to work around this by using magnets if that option is available as an RSS.


  46. #93 by Nabber on May 12, 2013 - 5:54 pm


    It’s working perfectly with BTN, just a quick question about the seeding, when I try to put the value for 1.1 ratio in it keeps saying the value is invalid, the closest I can get is 1.01 in the control panel. Also what port is libtorrent using so I can forward it.

    • #94 by Bricky on May 12, 2013 - 6:53 pm

      That issue with Chrome should be fixed now, see
      Just do a force-version-check, and upgrade when it prompts you to.

      The port in use will be in the range 6881 to 6891. It starts at 6881, and keeps trying until it finds a free port, so the most likely candidate is 6881 unless you have something else running on that port. You can forward the port if you wish, but unless your router is very old, libtorrent will likely have set up a port mapping for it already (via either NAT-PMP or UPnP).

      • #95 by Nabber on May 12, 2013 - 6:58 pm

        Thanks for such a quick response, also I know you aren’t taking feature requests but is there a way of setting the inbuilt torrent client to stop seeding after time rather than ratio

      • #96 by Bricky on May 12, 2013 - 9:02 pm

        I probably will in time (along with various other common settings/tweaks), but it’s not an immediate priority.

  47. #97 by Teta on May 28, 2013 - 7:11 pm

    Hi Bricky,
    Love your fork, it’s running quite nicely on my CubieBoard :)
    I’m trying to use the built in torrent client, but it doesn’t show up. I’ve installed libtorrent-rasterbars6, but to no avail. Any ideas?

    • #98 by Teta on May 28, 2013 - 7:25 pm

      Nevermind, found your other post. It’s working now…

  48. #99 by muriani on June 10, 2013 - 6:33 pm

    So, I pull this from git rather excitedly, giddy at the thought of support for
    I stop my running sickbeard, backup my config and db files as instructed, switch to your fork, and start it up.
    …and it looks just like the standard sickbeard. No extra torrent providers, nothing.

    I completely remove sickbeard, and go for a fresh install.
    Same result. Nothing more than the basic torrent providers from official SickBeard master.

    System is Debian Squeeze (running OpenMediaVault).
    Everything else works perfectly, but I don’t have the extra search providers.

    Any ideas? I’m at a loss here.

    • #100 by muriani on June 10, 2013 - 6:47 pm

      I figured it out.
      The init script that launches sickbeard for me automatically pulls the latest master and reconfigures it… dropping the support.

  49. #101 by lodder on July 8, 2013 - 6:38 am


    Great fork but is it possible to merge the following code:

    for public hd so it has backlog support instead of limited rss feed?

    • #102 by Bricky on July 8, 2013 - 12:14 pm

      Hi Lodder,

      I’m not really a fan of the use of scraping in SB – it makes code very delicate and susceptible to unexpected breakage. I’ve been removing it wherever possible (it’s entirely removed now I believe – the last usage of it was in showrss, which I replaced with a simple api call a few weeks ago)

      And this code appears to be entirely dependent on scraping (even ignoring the existing rss for the ‘latest’ feed). If there’s an api in publichd which supports backlog, then I’d delighted to use it – but as it is, I think it’s unlikely that I’d add this.

      Having said that though, this code is very simple – if you want to use it yourself, you could probably just replace the from this fork with the one you’ve linked to, and (at least at first glance) it looks like it would work.


  50. #103 by ash on July 15, 2013 - 11:42 am

    Hi Bricky, thanks for sharing this. I even tried the PirateBay edition but this just picks up more matches & the RSS feature is too hard to let go. I do feel that the air-by-date searches are unnecessarily restricted though. Although the actual sites may not support air-by-date backlog searches the torrent names are usually enough to match & I’ve been able to get decent matches by disabling the show.air_by_date check but the season matching logic seems to be hard wired for normal tv shows. I’m going thru the code trying to adjust the providers but perhaps you might be able to do this faster.

    • #104 by Bricky on July 15, 2013 - 12:02 pm

      Hi Ash,

      There are so few abd shows on tvdb, to be quite honest I simply didn’t bother to implement abd searching on the few providers I’ve added (and I think the same may be true of others also) – even when it could be possible to do it.

      I’m not so sure that you’ll be able to fix the season matching logic – but you can simply ignore it by returning the same result for _get_season_search_strings and _get_episode_search_strings (i.e. have one call the other). Take a look at how this is done in for example.

      Hope this helps a bit. If you get this working then a pull request would be great :)

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