Copy your channels.conf file into ~/.xine or ~/.mplayer then start the player with gxine “dvb://TV CHANNEL” or mplayer “dvb://TV CHANNEL” This should get you going.
You could also try a far more manual approach shown here Cron is my TiVo Freevo.
When I was using Xine I kept having issues with nothing showing up or happening at all. There was two parts to this. First, the name of my channel has a space in it, so we need to put quotes around the command line in /usr/lib/python2.3/site-packages/freevo/tv/plugins/xine.py:158 so it looks like this:
command.append('"dvb://' + tuner\_channel + '"')
Second, make sure the channels.conf file exists in the
~/.xine/ directory of the user running freevo. I was sudoing to run freevo, so of course I had to copy my channels.conf file to the freevo user’s directory.