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2 posts

Wannabe Geek

#146923 2-Jun-2014 21:14
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Hi Everyone

Has anyone else had problems with the DVD player in Panasonic DVD recorders suddenly not reading any disk, either blank or prerecorded. I was recording from my 2 year old Panasonic XW380 to DVD one day and then the next day it just decided to not read anything. It is a replacement recorder for an older recorder (can't remember the model number but it had a 250GB HDD) which did the exactly the same thing to me (recorded to DVD fine one day and wouldn't read anything the next) but at 4 years old it couldn't be repaired as they didn't have the parts anymore and Panasonic kept it in exchange for the new one. So while I am hopeful that I will be able to get the XW380 repaired, it is possible that once again I will lose all I have recorded on the HDD unless I can copy the files via a PC to an external hard drive. And since the kids are continually filling up the HDD, it would be good to be able to copy them regardless.

Thanks to a couple of posts in 2011-2012 here on a similar subject, it does seem possible to copy the HDD files to a PC like I hoped so I have manged to do the following:

The XW380 has DLNA activated and is connected via an Ethernet cable to my router and a Windows 7 laptop connects via WIFI to the router. When I open Windows Media Player on the laptop, I can see the XW380 in the Other Library and can play what is recorded on the XW380 HDD through WMP but of course I can't copy it. When I click on the Computer icon on the laptop desktop, it shows my home network computers but not the XW380. Is this normal or am I missing something here??

I then downloaded Twonky Server 7.3 and VLC Media Player to the laptop as these programs seemed to be what people were successfully using. I found some instructions somewhere through Google that said to open VLC, be in Playlist view then choose Local Network and Universal Plug'n'Play so that the Viera server should open and you should be able to find the files on the HDD and chose where you want to save them. I get to the Local Network and Universal Plug'n'Play bit and VLC crashes every time, even after reinstalling it.

So I installed the trial version of Twonky Server and now I am really getting out of my depth as I know nothing about servers. None of the options I clicked on showed up the XW380 (sorry the kids have the laptop at the moment so I can't check what I did or take a photo of what network options it did find) so I am now looking for some detailed help for what to try next.

Thanks in advance for any help.


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1956 posts

Uber Geek

  #1058273 2-Jun-2014 22:19
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I use Twonky server to copy files from my Panasonic BW720 to my PC OK.
However I too was way out of my depth when I installed Twonky and it was a very steep learning curve.
Took me a long time of trial and error figuring out how it all worked. Biggest problem was that it takes a long time for Twonky to scan all video sources before being ready to use and initiallly I wasn't waiting long enough. I didn't pick up on the fact that it was still scanning until I became more familiar with its operation. The lack of any detailed instructions didn't help.
I use Windows 7 but recently was Installing WWindows 8.1 here on my Sister in law's new PC ready for her to use and I noticed that my Panasonic showed up on the network as another Hard Drive as well as another device and files would copy OK just like any other HDD. I was quite surprised as Win 7 won't do that.

2655 posts

Uber Geek

  #1058769 3-Jun-2014 18:59
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XBMC will do the transfer as well (at least, it will on the later XW390 model). However, in my experience, it is slow. About 1 MByte/sec. So it could take an hour to transfer a film.


2 posts

Wannabe Geek

  #1059364 4-Jun-2014 20:10
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OMG using Twonky Server is like climbing scree on a mountain - one step forward and two steps backwards!! And it seems a very long way to the top. Thanks for the advice so far.

Update since my last post.
Yesterday morning I could open Twonky Server on the laptop, click on Videos and see the files on the laptop and also XW380 listed in My Libraries but when I clicked on it, nothing happened.
When I turned on my main (Win XP) desktop, Twonky Server showed up on it but I could only access the laptop files, it wouldn't let me browse to the WinXP PC and add my external drives with photos and videos on it which are plugged in via USB to the PC.

Today, I had a bit of a rethink and decided I should probably have Twonky Server on the desktop as that is the computer I use the most and will use to stored the downloaded files to if I ever get that far. It is in our office with the router and is wired to it, while the XW380 is in the lounge. So I have uninstalled Twonky off the laptop and reinstalled it on the PC.

In Settings/Sharing, the Media Receivers screen shows our WIFI connected Panasonic Smart TV in the lounge (IP address ends with 113) and the desktop (IP address ends with 120 and is fixed), but the XW380 doesn't show.  I can also see the drives on the PC and have added a folder of photos from an external HDD in Sharing and saved the changes.  Status then showed Rescan Contents Folder – In Progress and I can now see the folder from the external HDD in Photos. So some progress.  But in Videos, the folders in My Videos on the PC are displayed and the XW380 is listed in My Library but once again clicking on it does nothing.

Before I posted here for more help, I had another Google search to see if I could find more info to help me with Twonky.  I found a post with instructions for using MediaMonkey for downloading from a Panasonic BD recorder, which sounded a much simpler option to try.  In about 15 minutes, I downloaded and installed the free version of MediaMonkey, followed the instructions to download a file from the XW380 and managed to get a file saved to my PC which I had to add a .mp4 extension and then it played in Windows Media Player. A 1GB file took about 5 minutes to download and using a much easier method than Twonky.

So for anyone else who needs to copy files from a DVD recorder to a PC using MediaMonkey, here is what I did:
In Tools/Options/Downloads+Podcasts, change number of concurrent downloads to 1 and change the default directory that you want the files to be saved to.
In the main screen, select Media Servers on the left hand side and the Panasonic should show up. Click on the Video folder and the files on the XW380 are listed.  You can click on the column headers you don't want and turn them off.
Select a file and click on Download.
Once the download has finished, find the default folder on the PC and the file will be saved there with no file extension. Rename the file as .mp4 or .avi and it will open in Windows Media Player.

Goodbye Twonky Server!

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