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352 posts

Ultimate Geek


Topic # 58360 10-Mar-2010 06:42
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(didn't want to go offtopic - new thread)

Regs:
rvangelder: i have two nova-s-plus cards in my windows 7 mce. stable as.
the "my movies" addin is an unstable pos, and gradually slows the whole system down until reboot. the ui is sparkles, but designed by a user interface nobody that wants you to spend more time navigating its awesomeness than watching movies.
when i can be bothered writing a replacement, it'll be canned to the curb with the shift key held for good measure.
otherwise windows mc is nice and stable


i also have dual nova-s-plus and am stable as.  i threw away mymovies and switched to media browser instead - way better!  give it a try, i'm running it on windows 7, an AMD 3500 with 1.5GB ram....


A few things with Media Browser challenged me enough to give up.
1. I run my MCE with a remote control as the only UI. All collection management is done on my own PC in a different room. MyMovies is good at this, MediaBrowser seems not to be.
2. The graphics were a little clunky. That doesn't bug me too much considering my movies is bling without bang.
3. Billions of little metadata file. Call me anal, but seriously, this really f-m-o. My folders, not yours. MINE.
4. I watch more ripped TV shows than movies. Episode navigation is a must.

MyMovies is right on the brink of getting deleted. I paid some money to unlock features that should have come free. Then when I asked about the metadata interference, the developer suggested I find another product. I also hate that it takes a few seconds to authenticate me every time I want to use it.

However, developing plug-ins for Media Center is kind of a big learning curve, and a bit painful. There are tonnes of samples in the SDK, so if I get bored enough, or angry enough with MM, then I'll slap something together to suit me.

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Ultimate Geek

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  Reply # 305861 10-Mar-2010 09:10
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1. Get hold of MetaBrowser - it works over the network so you can manage your collection from another machine, but you will need to put up with some stuff in the folder - see 3. MediaBrowser only offers very basic collection management. There's also YAMM and a bunch of others.

2. Graphics Clunky??? - no way, its by far the best looking addin out there. You may need to spend some time looking for some icon/background packs, but once done, its simply stunning.

3. Build a bridge - if you want advanced functionality ie TV Series info etc you need to get over it, even MediaBrowser adds meta info into the folder. The Movie/Program info needs to be held somewhere. Adding the dvdid info also adds funtionality. The folder.jpg etc just make it nice to look at. It not like it adds GB of info to your collection.

4. Episode Navigation works very well, including invididual series info etc. You need to follow some guidelines with folder structure etc, but once done its fantastic.

As for MyMovies - they're stuck in yesterday. Just delete it, and forget about it (kidding)... It would make a really nice plugin for Media Portal...

The one thing with MediaBrowser is that you need to invest a bit of time setting it up. Once its done its fantastic.



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  Reply # 305904 10-Mar-2010 11:24
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Hmm Media Browser looks interesting. However I have a couple of questions.

I have been just using the movies interface in Windows 7 MC and using mymovies from my main PC to add the movie information (even though MC only shows the cover art).
I have each move in its own folder and of course each folder therefore contains the mymovies metadata etc.
Would Media Browser use that existing data or will it download its own data? If it uses its own would I be best off to delete the existing data before running Media Browser?







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 305911 10-Mar-2010 12:13
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Metabrowser and mediabrowser use the mymovies data just fine.

To the OP, if you're not happy with the appearance of media browser theres a few things to do

1) Load the configurator program (the one that tells MB where to look for media) and go to the plugins tab. Install the various themes there (maelstrom, chocolate, dimaond & vanilla). Now when you next run mediabrowser you can activate these through the settings menu. You'll need to play round with them to get them how you like but its worth it

2) Go to the mediabrowser forums and download some icon packs (Xeners ones are excellent). Read in the forums about how to get these going properly.

3) Locate and download a program called "Stark Covers". This will make your collection look even better again by adding movie covers that look like dvd cases or 3D icons, etc

4) Setup and use the imagesbyname folder (IBN). Read the mediabrowser forums and locate the files needed on www.thehtpc.net to set this up.

5) As Rusty said, use metabrowser. Not only will this allow you to gather and update metadata but you can also download cover and background pictures for all your movies, genres, folders and more. POint it at your imagesbyname folder and all the actor images, movie covers, etc will be stored permanently (and separately from your media) and will appear in mediabrowser.

Mediabrowser (with metabrowser support) is probably the best HTPC app out there so learn to use it.

Also make sure you have the latest version (2.2.2 Thunderblade)

Ask away if you have questions as Ive spent a load of time studying and setting this up but Id suggest doing a whole load of reading on the mediabrowser forums first as everything is answered there somewhere.

Dont worry about all the metadata, its just a fact of life. Also, I have 1.5TB of tv shows running flawlessly through mediabrowser. Episode navigation is easy, I have all the actor images, metadata, backgrounds and cover images, even episode images.

Theres a bit to learn but its worth it

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  Reply # 305932 10-Mar-2010 12:56
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Heres bunch of pics to add some weight...















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  Reply # 306039 10-Mar-2010 18:51
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I have to add my agreement on just how fantastic MediaBrowser is. I've been using it for quite some time now and just haven't found anything that comes anywhere near it, both paid and free.

It is one of the first things I fire up when I show off my HTPC to friends. It looks absolutely stunning. Oh and it is 100% free. Can complain about that!

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  Reply # 306135 11-Mar-2010 06:28
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Installed last night. So far looking very good. Still a lot of tweaking to do but blows the other options I have played with out of the water so far.
However it has introduced a issue that I have had in the past with mymovies when I used that as a front end.
When you click Stop when watching a movie it does not close the movie. Instead it stops it but leaves it in "Now Playing" under the main MC interface. How do you get it to stop and close the movie?







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64



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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 306147 11-Mar-2010 08:49
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Nety: When you click Stop when watching a movie it does not close the movie. Instead it stops it but leaves it in "Now Playing" under the main MC interface. How do you get it to stop and close the movie?


I get that all the time with MyMovies. I'm told this is normal and to just quickly play a recorded tv show for a moment, stop it, then nothing will show in "Now Playing".


I'm glad I had a whinge about MyMovies. I'm now willing to give MediaBrowser another shot - just need a good day or so to iron out the creases. Might have to lean on you lot in a little while :D

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Reply # 306153 11-Mar-2010 09:19
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Have to agree with the previous posts on this thread - Media Browser is worth persevering with. Visually it looks great, and once you have the folder structure right, your set. The only pain is the time it takes to transfer the files and pad out the metadata on all the movies and tv shows.

Oh, and after you have downloaded all the backgrounds, banners, covers and whatnot with MetaBrowser, you'll want to go into the Media Browser configuration menu and select "clear cache". This will make sure ALL your movies populate in the media browser list (quickly) - Media Browser will use the saved local data (downloaded through MetaBrowser) and not try to re-download data gain (slows it down). I was having issues with only 25 or so movies showing (had a bunch more). I would back out and then go back in, and few more would be showing. I think it was re-downloading the movie info / pics, etc (?). Anyway, clearing the cache solved that issue (it got the metadata locally instead I think (?) ) - the movie list populates instantly now. This could be done every time a movie is added, however, it does wipe the menu structure of media browser (view movies as list, thumbs, etc), but may be neccessary if your movies aren't showing in the list.

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  Reply # 306194 11-Mar-2010 10:54
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rvangelder:

I get that all the time with MyMovies. I'm told this is normal and to just quickly play a recorded tv show for a moment, stop it, then nothing will show in "Now Playing".



That is a bit annoying. I did a test this morning as the issue I used to have was that because of the codec's used the media center would then not go to sleep until you cleared the Now playing. At least for the movie I trialed it with the MC did still go to sleep so that is encouraging but it is annoying that it seem to be the behaviour with the plugin software but it does not do it if you play the movie from the MC movies area.

I am blown away by just how nice the interface looks. Will have to sort out TV series over the next few days as that looks really good too.

Oh I did clear out all the My Movies info and let Media Manager download its own data which seemed a cleaner way of doing it.







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 306216 11-Mar-2010 11:37
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For best results with TV shows all the episodes need to be named correctly

eg:

S01E01 - Pilot
S01E02 - The Beginning

There's a metadata program called Media Scout (has its own subforum on the Media Browser forums) that has a neat renaming function under the options tab.

Metabrowser is still my preferred metadata program though




HTPC: Silverstone Crown CW02 case | Asus P5Q-L main board | Intel Dual core E8400 3.0GHz CPU | Thermalright Ultra120-Extreme Passive CPU Cooler | Blackgold BTG3540 TV Tuner & Hauppauge PVR-150 MCE Edition | Asus EN9600GT-Silent Passive GPU | 4GB Supertalent DDR2 800 RAM | 5+TB HDD space | LiteOn DH-401S BD/DVD/CD reader | Corsair HX-520w PSU | 1 single Noctua Silent Case fan | Logitech diNovo Bluetooth Media Desktop | Logitech Harmony 785 Universal Remote | Logitech Wireless Rumblepad 2 | Windows 7 Media Center, MediaBrowser & Arcsoft Total Media Theatre



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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 312196 28-Mar-2010 21:14
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Found time to install this today.
Installed MediaBrowser on the HTPC, and MetaBrowser on my PC.
Using Shared Folders as the common link.

Many of my folders and files were a mess, so most of the time was spent housekeeping / renaming - I'm about half way through my collection.

Once configured, it ran really nice. Very fast. The parental controls work good too.

I like that I can drop new files into the folder structure, and Metabrowser detects the change and adds Metadata. TVDB must be quite up to date!

Thanks for convincing me to give this another shot guys. So far so good.

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  Reply # 312337 29-Mar-2010 11:17
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There's an option in MetaBrowser to get it to do the renaming for you - its pretty good, as long as the movie name is roughly correct it seems to do its stuff.

It'll do both the movie name and the folder...

The other thing to tick in the options is the DVDID.xml option - this allows Media Center to complement the other xml info, so that when something is playing, you can get the Synopsis, Cover Art, etc etc in the native media center interface. Its just a bit of backfill info, but it kinda completes the picture...



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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 312387 29-Mar-2010 13:19
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The other thing to tick in the options is the DVDID.xml option - this allows Media Center to complement the other xml info, so that when something is playing, you can get the Synopsis, Cover Art, etc etc in the native media center interface. Its just a bit of backfill info, but it kinda completes the picture...


I'd have to set up a share to this folder. That's something I could do without too much effort.

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