MediaPortal Setup Guide
|07-03-2012, 9:51 PM||#1|
MediaPortal Setup Guide
Robbo100‘s MediaPortal 1.2.X Installation Guide
For Index of topics, please see post number 11.
1.1) What is MediaPortal
MediaPortal (MP) is a very powerful and configurable Home Theatre Personal Computer (HTPC) package which is free to download and Open Source architecture. MP will run on Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7 and allows the user to do a whole host of things, but its main functions include:
1.2) How does MediaPortal work
Before installing MP it is worth knowing a little bit about the software, since this knowledge will help understand why the software is the way it is.
The primary function of MP is to provide a whole-house media solution, which includes the sharing of TV Tuner resource to multiple users (clients) on the home network. Because of this aim, the software is split into two parts:
1.3) Assumptions made within this guide
This guide is written based upon installing MediaPortal on a Windows 7 machine, however, all of the instructions are equally pertinent to installing MP on either Vista or Windows XP (albeit the directory names may vary slightly between versions of Windows.
The guide is also tailored towards setting up a system using either DVB-S/S2 and/or DVB-T/T2 in the UK (since that is where I am from. However, the process should work wherever you are, and if you have problems (for example you can’t display your Electronic Programme Guide (EPG), then the community forums will be eager to help you.
The guide does not differentiate between the Client/Server Installation or the Single-Seat Installation (unless specifically crucial to a particular step in the process). This is because the setup procedure for each side of the software is the same whichever type of installation is used.
The guide assumes the user owns a standard MCE remote control. MP supports many remotes, but for simplicity sake this guide just uses the easiest remote.
1.4) Pre-Installation Preparation
Before you start installing MP, there are a number of things you need to do to your basic windows installation to get it ready. These are not all essential, but are good practice to get the best results:
In order for MP to display video in all the different formats on your hard drive and removable media, it will need to have access to audio and video codecs. If you are using Windows 7, then all you will need to install to get most (if not all) of your formats to work is the LAV Splitter: MEDIAPORTAL - LAV Filters. However, if you are not confident with what you are doing with codecs, then there is a codec pack called SAF specifically designed for MediaPortal which can be downloaded here: SAF v6 (based on LAVF) | MediaPortal Forum. When you install SAF it will prompt you to answer questions regarding your setup (e.g. is your HPTC connected to an AV Amplifier) which will help you get the right settings for your systems. SAF will also allow you to configure your system to output HD Audio (such as DTS-HD). The SAF hyperlink above also shows how to configure the codec section in MP setup, but we will come to that later.
2) Downloading and installing MediaPortal
Now that your system is ready, you can download the installation files from the MP website: MEDIAPORTAL - Download MediaPortal for free!. The download includes all the additional software that MP needs, and so should not only install MP, but also install other required software.
2.1) Single-Seat Installation with live TV Support (or a Client/Server Installation where the you would also like the server to have the client-side software installed)
2.2) Client/Server Installation (client-side and server-side software on two separate computers
Last edited by robbo100; 12-05-2012 at 9:28 PM.
Log in or sign up to remove
|07-03-2012, 9:51 PM||#2|
3) Client-Side Setup
3.1) Starting the Client-Side Setup
Configuring the Client-Side Software is pretty simple really although it can look a bit daunting until you get used to the layout of the config menu, which doesn't take long.
As a general rule, MediaPortal seems to prefer it when you refer to your media locations using their network address (e.g. \\nas01\music) rather than mapped network drives within Windows.
(Note: AVForums limits the number of image links per post to 10. To keep within this limit, I have provided hyperlinks to the MP Wiki for each menu to help you understand the context of the instruction).
3.2) General (Wiki)
If you expand the General menu, there are a number of lower-level menus. Configure the following items as instructed below:
3.2.1) Dynamic Refresh Rate (Wiki)
3.2.2) Startup/Resume Settings (Wiki)3.3) Videos (Wiki)
If you expand the Video menu, there are a number of lower-level menus. This menu provides all the options for how you view your videos in MP (including creation of a database). I will later provide instruction regarding the installation of two plugins which will manage all your TV Series and Movies, therefore the instructions below provide you with the minimum instructions needed just to be able to view and play your videos within MP. There are a number of options for setting subtitles etc, but for now I suggest they are left as default. Configure the following items as instructed below:
3.3.1) Video Folders (Wiki)3.4) TV (Wiki)
This is the section that allows you to tell the client-side software where on the network your TV Server is. This may be on the same PC, or on another PC on the network.
3.4.1) TV Client (Wiki)3.5) Music (Wiki)
This section allows you to create a database of your music which will be used by MP to download artwork and artist information (discussed later in the plugin section).
3.5.1) Music Folders (Wiki)
3.5.2) Music Database (Wiki)
3.5.3) Music Ripping (Wiki)3.6) Pictures (Wiki)
This section allows you to tell MP where you store your photos and configure how you wish to view them from within MP.
3.6.1) Picture Folders (Wiki)
3.6.2) Picture Database (Wiki)
3.6.3) Picture Extensions (Wiki)3.7) Remote (Wiki)
This guide assumes that you are using a basic MCE remote control with your client. However, many are supported (see the Wiki for details).
3.8) Codecs (Wiki)
This section allows you to configure your codecs. One of the great things about MP is that the codecs are configurable which will allow you to play pretty much any file type or format. However, this flexibility can be intimidating for many (don't let it scare you). MP will allow you to set different codecs and renderers for Video, TV and DVD playback.
If you are intending to simply use the Windows 7 built-in codecs along with the LAV Splitter (download), then your video codecs should be configured as follows:
3.8.1) Video Codecs (Wiki)
3.8.2) TV Codecs (Wiki)
3.8.3) DVD Codecs (Wiki)If you wish to use the MP SAF Codec Pack, then the download, installation and configuration can be found here (note: this is useful if you are not using Windows 7 and don't have built-in codecs (of if you wish to use HD Audio over HDMI (see Section 13.1) - to get the "UNLOCKED" version of SAF, you need to send a Private Message to Hoborg via the MP forum).
3.9) Plugins (Wiki)
Although this section of the guide was only going to discuss the items that needed changing to get MP to work (and you don't actually need to adjust anything in this menu to get MP to work), it is important that this section gets a mention at this stage. Basically, this menu is where all of your plugins are enabled, configured or disabled. We will discuss this in more detail later when it is needed for the first time.
3.10) Additional 3rd Party Checks (Wiki) - Note: the wiki screenshot is out of date and does not fully match the current layout
Last edited by robbo100; 17-04-2012 at 9:07 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:52 PM||#3|
4) Server-Side Setup
4.1) Starting the Server-Side Setup
4.2) Introduction to TV Server Configuration (Wiki)
Most of the menus within the TV Server Configuration are self explanatory, but a little bit of introduction is needed to the second menu in the list "TV Servers". This menu is where all your tuners are configured and where you do your channel scanning.
If you expand the menu "TV Servers" by clicking on the + symbol you will find a single sub menu which is named the same as the network name of your particular PC (we will call this "Your Server" within this guide from now on to avoid confusion). If you then click on the + symbol again you will find all of the tuners you have installed within your PC (we will call these "DVB-T/T2_Tuner_N" (for a Terrestrial tuner where N is number from 1 to X depending upon how many cards DVB-T/T2 cards you have fitted), or "DVB-S/S2_Tuner_N" (for a satellite tuner)).
Note: The reason why "Your Server" is listed is because the original design intent for MP was to allow multiple servers to work together, however this was never successfully achieved and so this menu layout is a legacy of this desire. It will be possible to do this with MP2 in the future though!
4.3) Setting Tuner Priority (Wiki)
MP will completely manage all of your tuners and will allow you to priorities the way that you use your tuners. This prioritisation will be different for all users for different users. Some people may prioritise the tuner that changes channel the quickest, some may only have one tuner that will play HD (in which case the user might want to set this as the lowest priority so it is always free for HD recordings). If you don't have any strong views or requirements, then you can just the default settings.
If you make changes to your tuner priority then the TV Service will need to restart. Therefore you should make sure that no clients or recordings are active before making changes in the future.
To change your tuner priorities click on "TV Servers">"Your Server". Click once on the tuner you want to change priority for and then use the "UP/DOWN" buttons to move it up and down the list. The priority may seem counter intuitive to some, in that the higher then priority number, the higher the actual priority of the tuner (i.e. priority 1 is the LOWEST priority).
4.4) Scanning for Channels
This section is broken into two sections, firstly for DVB-S/S2 scanning and secondly for DVB-T/T2 scanning. DVB-C and analogue scanning is not currently addressed in this guide.
MP will allow more than one tuner of any type to run a channel scan at the same, so you do not have to wait for on tuner to finish scanning before you start with the next scan.
4.4.1) DVB-S/S2 Scanning (Wiki)4.5) Organising Your TV Channels (Wiki)
Now that your tuning is complete, you can click on the menu "TV Channels" and you will see a screen with a number of tabs along the top ("Channels", "All Channels", "Digital Satellite", "Digital Terrestrial" - subject to you having both DVB-T/T2 and DVB-S/S2 tuners installed)
Each channel has a red or green symbol next to it, where green means that it is free-to-air, and red means that it is encrypted.
4.5.1) Combining Common Channels From Different Service Providers (Wiki)Since there are multiple methods of assigning EPG data to your channels, this is addressed in a separate section of the guide (Section 7).
4.6) Organising Your Radio Channels (Wiki)
Organising your radio channels is the identical process to organising your TV channels (see Section 4.5).
4.7) Configuring Recording Folders
As discussed in Section 1.4, you ideally want to setup your system so that your TV recordings are stored on a partition other than the one where your operating system is stored. By doing this, you will not make your system grind to a halt if you fill the hard drive up. By default, the timeshift folder is set to your C drive, so that should not need changing (unless for example, you are using an SSD and don't want to read/write to it all the time), but it is likely that you might want to change your recording destination. MP will allow you to store the recordings from each of your tuners in different locations, but this guide will show you how to change them all to a common location other than the default installation value.
To change your recording destination select the menu "Recording" (Wiki) and then select the "Folders" tab. Click on the "Browse" button, select your chosen destination and click "OK", now click on the "Same recording folder for all cards" button.
4.8) Configuring Timeshift Folders
To change the location where MediaPortal stores the timeshift data (e.g because you don't want it read/writing to an SSD all the time) do the following:
Select the menu "Timeshifting" (Wiki) and then select the "Folders" tab. Click on the "Browse" button, select your chosen destination and click "OK", now click on the "Same recording folder for all cards" button.
Click "OK" to save your TV Server Configuration settings and exit the configuration GUI.
Last edited by robbo100; 18-04-2012 at 12:32 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:53 PM||#4|
5) Using MediaPortal For The First Time
Now that MP Client-Side and Server-Side are both setup, you can run the MP Client GUI for the first time. Normally, this will run when Windows starts (based upon the setting made at Section 3.2.2), however since Windows is already running you will have to run it manually on this occasion. To start the GUI, simply double click on the MediaPortal shortcut on your desktop (or press the green button on your MCE remote control).
Once MP has started up, you will see the default skin that is supplied as shown below (you can change the skin later if you wish as discussed in Section 11). You should be able to use your remote and/or keyboard to navigate round the GUI (keyboard shortcuts Wiki). If you get lost at any time, then simply press the MCE green button, or the "H" key on the keyboard to return to the "Home Screen".
You should be able to access the menus for and view the following media:
Once you have had a play, you will want to move onto the next step and setup your EPG and other useful plugins. To exit the MP Client GUI, navigate to the "Home Screen", then press right to move the cursor to the top icons and select the "X" symbol (you can use the mouse to click on the "X" or use "ALT+F4" too).
6) How To Install and Configure Plugins
Since MP is open source, there are a plethora of plugins and skins available which have been written by the community. These plugins vary massively in complexity and function, with some being targeted at the Server-Side, others at the Client-Side, and a couple that work on both the Server and Client Side.
Installing and configuring plugins is generally a very simple process, and MP is supplied with a plugin installed called the MediaPortal Extension Installer (MPEI) which lists available plugins (and skins) and allows the user to install them. Although the vast majority of plugins are provided by the MPEI, there are some exceptions to this rule (usually where a .exe is provided by the plugin writer, or where a plugin is in alpha or beta release and not yet added to the MPEI tool). This section of the guide will discuss how to use the MPEI tool (where other installation methods are provided by a plugin author, these will be accompanied by separate installation instructions for that specific plugin). The guide will also discuss configuring ALL plugins (however they are installed), within the MP Configuration Plugin menu (as already mentioned in Section 3.9).
Plugins are available from a number of sources:
6.1) Using the MediaPortal Extension Installer (Wiki)
When MP is installed a shortcut to the MPEI is copied to your desktop for easy access. Once this shortcut is run, you are initially shown with a dialogue asking you if you wish to update your list of extensions. You should select "Yes" and MPEI will download the latest plugin data from the various hosting servers, then present you with the following screen (although the window showing your installed plugins will be empty the first time you run MPEI).
There are three tabs along the top of the main program window: Installed Extensions, Known Extensions and Options. The "Installed Extensions" tab will show you the plugins that you have installed on your system, the "Known Extensions" will show you all of the plugins that are available for you to install, and the "Options" screen will clearly show you the MPEI options.
To install an plugin or skin, simply click on the "Known Extensions" tab, fine the plugin or skin you want to install and then click on it to expand it in the list. Then click on "Install" to start the installation process, and then follow the onscreen user prompts. If you can't find the plugin you are looking for, simply use the keyword search function, it is very effective.
If you can not find the latest version of the plugin, your MPEI database may need updating. This can be achieved by clicking on the "Options" tab within MPEI and then clicking on the "Download Online Update Info" button.
6.2) Configuring Installed Plugins
Once you have installed a plugin, depending upon the complexity of the plugin and the function, you may need to configure it. Plugins are configured using either the TV Server Configuration GUI or the MediaPortal Configuration GUI (depending upon which bit of the MP system the plugin interacts with).
6.2.1) Client-Side Plugin Configuration (Wiki)
Last edited by robbo100; 17-04-2012 at 9:07 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:53 PM||#5|
7) Setting Up The TV Electronic Programme Guide
The EPG is one of the most important parts of the MP system and having a reliable EPG will mean that your TV experience is at its best. With MP, there are many different ways in which you can populate your EPG (via internet data and data received by your TV tuner) and I will discuss a couple of them here, but concentrate on the method that I find the most reliable and that provides a full 14 day set of data.
7.1) EPG Data Using XMLTV (Wiki)
My personal preference for EPG data is to download the raw data from the internet using a 3rd party tool, then save this data for MP to use. I source my data from RadioTimes, which is free, and provides far more thorough programme descriptions than the Freeview or Freesat EPG.
7.1.1) Downloading your EPG Data From The Internet7.2) EPG Data Using DVB-EPG (Via Your TV Service Provider) (Wiki)
It is possible with MP, to obtain your EPG data directly from your aerial or satellite provider via your DVB tuner. This function is natively built into MP and very easy to configure using the following steps:
7.3.1) WebEPG Plugin (Wiki)8) Setting Up Your Power-Saving Settings (Wiki)
Most users don't want their HTPCs on all the time because this will waste electricity and shorten the life of the system components. MP is supplied with a plugin called "Powerscheduler" which works fine, but I prefer to use a revised version of Powerscheduler called "Powerscheduler++". Powerscheduler++ (and the legacy Powerscheduler plugin) is unusual in that it installs a component on both the client and server side. If you have a separate client / server setup, then you must run the installation on all computers (the client will need to plugin installed to keep the server awake whilst it is being used).
Powerscheduler++ is installed using the MPEI (see Section 6.1), however the version I recommend is the latest beta version (V 188.8.131.52). In order to download beta versions of plugins from the MPEI, select the options tab and remove the tick from the "Show only stable releases" option, then look for Powerscheduler++ in the known plugins list and install V 184.108.40.206 (or a later stable version if available).
In the past I have found problems with installing Powerscheduler++ when the installer attempts to kill the TV Service (which it needs to do to complete the installation). If this occurs then you just need to use "CTRL+ALT+DEL" and manually kill the TV Service process and repeat the installation.
8.1) Powerscheduler++ Server-Side Setup
You should have already made sure your server is going into standby correctly in the normal Windows environment (don't worry if it doesn't there is a work-around).
To configure the Server-Side plugin:
Setting up the client side pretty simple (note: you should have already proven your HTPC standby is working in the normal Windows environment):
8.2.1) Single-Seat System
Last edited by robbo100; 30-05-2012 at 7:45 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:54 PM||#6|
There are two plugins available for organising your movies and presenting them with fanart and information:
9.1) Preparing Your Movie Files
No specific preparation is needed before installing Moving Pictures, other than the need for your movie file names to be named the same as the movie they represent. Movies can be stored in multiple folders on different drives, in different sub folders, or all in the same folder, Moving Pictures won't mind.
9.2) Installing Moving Pictures
Moving Pictures is one of the few plugins which is installed using a separate installation package rather than using the MPEI, however the installation process is very simple indeed.
9.4.1) Using MP Native Player10) TV Series
The TV Series plugin acts just like the Moving Picture plugin (see Section 9) but displays fanart and information for your TV Series (taken from media rips or recorded using your TV tuners). TV Series will provide you with screens like the one below (depending upon your skin):
10.1) Preparing Your TV Series Files
TV Series needs a little bit more preparation work to make sure that it will be able to import the appropriate data for each of your files. Essentially, each file needs to be named in the following format:
For example, The Simpsons S02E12 will give you "The Simsons Series 2 Episode 12" - which will be this programme: The Simpsons: The Way We Was (TV Series will download the fanart and information from this website for all your programmes).
10.2) Installing TV Series
TV Series can be installed using the MPEI, see Section 6.1.
10.3) Configuring TV Series
The TV Series plugin author has written a very good step by step guide to configuring the plugin, and I would recommend its use: TV Series Setup Guide.
11) Changing Skins
There are many different skins available to choose from. Some are simply and you can't re-configure the menu (similar in that respect to the default skin supplied with MP), but others allow you to configure things exactly as you wish to make it tailored exactly to how you like it.
If you want to change your skin, then the best place to look is the skin-gallary, which has got screenshots of all the main skins for you to have a look at. There are also other skins available to look at in the skins section of the forum (some of which are under development and available to try in beta versions) and in the Download Repository.
Installing a skin is very easy, but the configuration will differ depending upon how configurable it is. In its simplest form, installation of a skin will simply involve running the install file (from the MPEI or using a .exe installer), and then selecting the skin as your default skin.
A skin can be selected as default be two mechanisms:
For the purposes of this guide I will show you how to setup the StreamedMP skin. It is a very nice skin and also will provide you with auto-updates from within the MP Client software that you can install using your remote control.
Installing StreamedMP will not only install the skin, but also a good number of the popular plugins discussed in Section 12. StreamedMP will install the following plugins:
11.1.1) Installation and Basic StreamedMP Setup
Last edited by robbo100; 17-04-2012 at 9:12 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:55 PM||#7|
12) Other Popular Plugins and Features220.127.116.11) BasicHome Design Tab
This section provides details of some of the most popular plugins that users might wish to install on their system.
12.1) Watch Internet Videos - Including BBC IPlayer, 4OD etc (Online Videos Plugin) (Homepage)
The main goal of this plug-in is the seamless integration of video content provided by various websites with the MP Client GUI. In order to achieve this, playback is heavily dependent on directshow filters installed on the users operating system (if you have problems with playback of some video formats from OnlineVideos, then I suggest you install SAF (See Section 1.5). The discovery or scraping of playback links is very flexible and can be done by reading rss feeds, parsing html with regular expressions or even programming against APIs provided by websites, which means that new service providers not already included in the basic setup can be easily added (BBC IPlayer, 4OD and ITV are configured by default so no intervention is required)
The plugin interface will unify the user experience from all the different websites into one simple structure. Every site will span a hierarchical tree of categories, each showing a set of videos with descriptions and thumbnails. Support for searching, filtering, bookmarking favorites and downloading is included as well. Online Videos will also allow users to watch trailers of movies from their Moving Pictures plugin.
12.1.1) Installing and Configuring OnlineVideos12.2) Browse the Internet Using Your Remote Control (Browse The Web Plugin)
The "Browse The Web" plugin is designed to allow users to use their remote control to view and navigate through web pages. The navigation method is very simple in that a unique number is put next to each hyperlink on the page and the remote control can be used to enter this number instead of clicking on that hyperlink. As well as being able to navigate to web pages from within the Browse The Web plugin, it is also possible to use automatically call up the plugin whenever you click on a RSS Feed from InfoService (see Section 12.17).
12.2.1) Installing and Configuring Browse The Web12.3) Weather Forecast (World Weather Plugin)
The World Weather Plugin is used to downloading your local weather information and will display this information in most skins automatically. It can also show you weather maps and other similar images. It can be installed via the MPEI, and then configured as follows:
Last edited by robbo100; 17-04-2012 at 9:15 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:57 PM||#8|
12.4) Running 3rd Party Programs Via MediaPortal GUI
Getting MediaPortal to exectue a 3rd party programme (anything like an .exe or batch file) is pretty easy, but it is a little more involved than some of the other plugins becuase you can not use the MPEI to install them and need to manually copy files to a couple of locations in the MediaPortal directories. However, follow the steps below and it is a very simple process:
12.4.1 Installing the Multishortcut plugin
12.4.3) Using IRSS to map remote keys to 3rd party application functions12.5) TV Logos For Your TV EPG
You will find a UK Logo Pack in the MPEI (there are a number of different options for different countries). Just run that and it will install everything you need. Sometimes the broadcasters change the channel name sightly (e.g. 5 vs Channel 5), so if you find that the odd logo isn't showing, then find the .png file and modify the filename to match the channel name exactly (this probably won't be needed, but just in case). If you can't find the installer, then you can download the file here: MEDIAPORTAL - UK TV & Radio Channel Logos
12.6) Playing Bluerays
It is possible to configure all your bluerays to play back using Moving Pictures (see Section 9.4), but this software may not identify all discs because some not all blueray discs contain films (e.g. wildlife documentaries). Therefore it is best to setup a method of playing a blueray independantly of Moving Pictures.
There are three methods of doing this:
12.6.1) Bluerays Using Native Player12.7) Client Plugin Updater (Extensions Plugin)
The Extensions Plugin is designed to create a link between the MPEI and the MediaPortal Client GUI so that plugins can be updated using the remote control from the comfort of your sofa. The Extensions Plugin can be downloaded and installed using the MPEI and the default installation options should be selected. There are no configuration actions required (other than choosing if you wish it so show in the "Home Screen" or under "Plugins").
12.8) Automatic Fanart Downloader (Fanart Handler Plugin)
The Fanart Handler Plugin is designed to download fanart posters for all your media for your skin to display at appropriate times. Very often, Fanart Handler is automatically installed by skin installations. No configuration changes are required, however the user may choose to load the Fanart Handler Plugin Configuration and set the minimum resolution of the downloaded fanart to the desired setting.
12.9) Automatic Music Information Downloader (Music Info Handler Plugin)
The Music Info Handler Plugin is designed to download artist and album information for displaying by a skin (not all skins support this yet). It can be downloaded and installed using the MPEI and no settings are required.
12.10) Automatic Music Lyrics Downloader (My Lyrics)
The My Lyrics Plugin is designed to download lyrics for all your music (based upon the content of your music database). One installed, you need to configure the plugin as follows:
Last edited by robbo100; 16-04-2012 at 8:07 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:58 PM||#9|
12.11) Games and Emulators (Emulators2 Plugin) (Forum Link)
The Emulators2 plugin will allow you to browse and select any of your games (console games run via emulators, or Windows compatible games) directly from your MediaPortal interface in the same way you would browse and play your movies using the Moving Pictures plugin.
This guide assumes that you have your games and emulators working correctly already and that you have configured them to run the games in full screen etc (i.e. this guide will only help you with the Emulator2 plugin setup and not that of the emulators themselves).
12.11.1) Downloading and Installing Emulators2 plugin12.12) Automatic Cinema Listings and Trailers Downloader (Show Times Plugin)
The Show Times Plugin will allow you to automatically download cinema listings and trailers for films showing at your local cinema. The plugin can be downloaded using the MPEI and the default installation options should be selected. Once installed, the following configuration is required:
12.13) Windows Update Control (Update Control)
The purpose of the Update Control plugin is to allow you to control your Windows operating System updates. If you are going to install this update, you should configure Windows so that it does not automatically download and install Windows update (otherwise the system will automatically update itself before the MediaPortal plugin can intervene)
The Update Control plugin allows you to view and execute pending Windows updates. The plugin is installed via the MPEI and there is no configuration required.
12.14) Youtube Video Viewer (YouTube.FM Plugin)
The YouTube.FM plugin allows you to search and access YouTube music content. It can be downloaded and installed via MPEI, and I suggest you use version 0.8.3.316 beta (or later).
12.15) iPhone Remote Control (CouchPotato)
CouchPotato is an excellent iPhone App available form the Apple Store. It allows you to control MediaPortal using your iPhone (including waking up the HTPC from sleep). Once you have installed the App on your iPhone you need to also install a Plugin on your MediaPortal client (on each of them if you have more than one). The Wifi Remote Plugin can be downloaded and installed using the MPEI and is configured as follows:
Since I do not own an Android device, I can not help a great deal with the installation and setup of the Android Remote Control app, however, details can be found here: http://forum.team-mediaportal.com/th...-final.106911/
In order for the Android Remote App to "talk" to MediaPortal, two MediaPortal plugins must be installed:
The InfoService Plugin will download RSS news information from any RSS website and list the feeds in the InfoService Plugin which can be viewed from within MP.
12.17.1)Installing and Configuring InfoService Plugin12.18) Music Keyword Search Tool (Global Search Plugin)
The Global Search plugin provides a key word search function for your music database and makes finding music tracks much easier (especially when you have a large music database). It can be downloaded and installed via the MPEI and there is no configuration required.
12.19) Web Services Provision (MPExtended plugin)
MPExtended is a project that aims to provide access to your MediaPortal system from all over the world. It essentially provides a web portal to all your databases, and allows streaming of your media (including live TV) to web applications (such as android tablets, or another PC on the internet if you wish).
Currently there are two parts to MPExentded, firstly the provision of services (MPExtended Services) and secondly a web front-end which can be accessed from an internet browser (WebMediaPortal).
The MPExtended Services plugin can be installed on it's own (so that other systems can utilise it's services). In order to use WebMediaPortal, you must have MPExtended Services installed. "Normal" users who are operating with separate client / server systems should just install MPExtended and WebMediaPortal (if required) on the server system only.
12.19.1)Installing and Configuring MPExtended Services
Last edited by robbo100; 12-05-2012 at 7:44 PM.
|07-03-2012, 9:59 PM||#10|
13) Advance Setup Instructions
13.1) HD Audio over HDMI Setup (3rd party setup guide)
In order to get HD Audio sent over HDMI (e.g. DTS-HD or TRUE-HD) you four important things:
13.1.1) Setting Up Your Graphics Card13.2) Speeding Up Your Channel Changing (Wiki)
By default, the MP installation is configured to maximise compatibility with all TV Tuners. However, there are a couple of option that can be selected which will improve the channel changing speed of your system (assuming that your TV Tuners are compatible with this setting). To activate these improvements run the TV Server Configuration shortcut on your desktop and then complete the following actions (note: the following process will require a re-start of your TV Service, so should not be conducted if you are recording or providing a service to a client):
Team MediaPortal support the use of off-the-shelf encryption card readers that are built into the tuner. It is possible to use other methods decrypt channels, however Team MediaPortal will not support them because they are concerned that disreputable individuals might be using the system for illegal gain. The following link provides a guide for one method of setup which is to be used at the individual contract holders risk and the author assumes that it is being used in accordance with the law. (Sky subscription channels with Nova-HD-S2)
13.4) Setting Up HE-AAC Audio From UK DVB-T2 Transmissions
Freeview HD uses a different type of AAC than Freesat HD, called HE-AAC. To make things worse, the HE-AAC specification was changed quite late in the DVB-T2 development process, so the format is exclusive to the UK. This means that there is a relatively small market for information on this format and hence not much info online about how to get it working with an HTPC.
This can be achieved using LAV Filters (tested with version 0.48, which can be downloaded using MPEI) and ffdshow (tested with version ffdshow tryouts rev 4382, which can be downloaded directly from the FFDShow website, or part of the SAF codec pack).
You can use the same combination of LAV / ffdshow for videos codecs too, if you have video files containing AAC 5.1 / AAC 2.0 audio.
(A big thank you to jameson_uk and lisag for help with this section).
14) Other Useful Plugins
The following list provides more plugins which may be of interest to users (it is a non-exaustive list, and you will find even more plugins in MPEI, or here.
14.1) User Input Plugins
15.1) Getting help from the MediaPortal community
The support provided by the Team MediaPortal forum community is excellent. In all the time I have been using MediaPortal, I have never failed to get a problem fixed with their help (even when in the early days the problems were simple errors on my part - the community are not snobbish about new comers). Before you can post a problem on the Team MediaPortal forum, you will need to get yourself a username and logon (as for most other internet forums). When you have done this, then follow the instructions under the "How to start a bug report thread:" section (just over half way down the page).
When you create your problem thread, I suggest you post it either here:
15.2) Video/audio synchronisation problems
If you are having problems with audio synchronisation when watching a particular type of media then I recommend that you install SAF and set the audio decoder associated with the problematic media to "FFDShow" (FFDShow has the ability to advance or delay the audio). To set the audio delay, do the following:
Windows 7 suffers from a problem whereby when it sees a momentary loss of HDMI connection (for example caused by switching of video sources on an AV Amplifier) it defaults to a basic resolution (resizing any program running on-screen). Unfortunately, with some systems this is not handled well and causes MediaPortal to be displayed in a half-sized window after an event. There are a number of possible solutions to this problem, and two of them are presented below:
15.3.1) Solution to "Half Screen" problem using VNC LAN
To overcome this problem, you will need to use a program like VNC LAN to change the resolution the system defaults to when no monitor is connected, using the following method:
15.3.2) Solution to "Half Screen" problem using Regedit
Last edited by robbo100; 14-05-2012 at 8:28 PM.
|07-03-2012, 10:00 PM||#11|
16) An Introduction to MediaPortal 2
The idea of MP2 is not only a complete code re-write to make it run faster, but also to give the system true client/server behaviour.
Currently MP1.X works as a client/server system for the TV (i.e. you have a server side which controls the TV backend and a client side that then watches the TV). However, all the other media is all controlled on the client side.
The implications of this current setup is that you only need to configure the TV settings once (on the server) and all the clients on your network will all work without need for configuration (other than to give the network address of the server), but the user will need to configure EVERY client on the network to view all the permanent media (music, videos, movies, photos), which is a pain if you have lots of clients (e.g. downloading the fanart for each client can take time).
With MP2, the server holds the configuration for ALL the clients in common, so you only need to set it up once and all the clients automatically "just work". Since MP2 has also moved away from the separate configuration GUI (and now uses a 10 ft configuration GUI), you can also make amendments to the configuration from any of the clients on the network. With all of this said, you can still taylor each client if you wish (such as adding locally stored media and removable drives (e.g. Blueray/DVD) or by changing the skin (a number of which are supplied with MP2 - note there are skins and themes, where each skin has a number of configurable themes).
The current MP2 Alpha release is just a first step towards the final product (but the work behind this first step shouldn't be played down in significance)! Basically the release installs the "server-side" software which (unlike MP1.X) just sits there running in the background without any need for configuring it - since this is done via the client-side software (you need to manually start it at the moment before you start the client-side), it also installs the "Client-side" software which is the front-end. So far, there has not been a re-write of the TV Service, but that will come with time. Until that happens, you can install a plugin that allows you to use MP2 with the old MP1.X TV Service.
If you are running just a single PC and want to try MP2, then you need to install the "Single-Seat" option (which installs both the client and the server software on the same PC). After you have run it, start the server-side software using the desktop shortcut, and then start the client and then use the settings option to setup your shares.
If you have a client/server setup (using two separate PCs on the network), then simply install the server-side on the server and the client-side on the client, and the client will autodetect the server, then use the client to setup the shares.
Last edited by robbo100; 18-04-2012 at 12:34 PM.
|07-03-2012, 10:19 PM||#12|
Look forward to seeing the finished article mate
|07-03-2012, 10:29 PM||#13|
Don't congratulate me until I finish it! :-)
Have you got that XBMC blurb and screenshots for the comparison thread yet
Last edited by robbo100; 08-03-2012 at 9:37 PM.
|08-03-2012, 9:08 AM||#14|
Great timing robbo, going to give MP a go over the weekend. Thanks.
|08-03-2012, 10:53 AM||#15|
I probably won't have finished the guide by then, but I will try to get some done!
|Thanks from:|| |
spyder viewer (11-03-2012)
|11-03-2012, 8:23 AM||#16|
The guide is starting to take shape now and I hope to get some time in the week to finish it all.
I would be grateful of any comments relating to:
|11-03-2012, 9:02 AM||#17|
I looked at MediaPortal again but had forgotten it won't allow you to bitstream audio, it insists on trying to decode so my Blu-ray rips fail.
Sticking with XBMC because I can sell it to pass through and let my AV receiver do the job.
|11-03-2012, 9:06 AM||#18|
By "bitstream audio" do you mean DTS-HD and TRUE-HD? If so then MP does do it (the magic blue light comes up on my amp) and my guide will show you how (when I get to that point).
|Thanks from:|| |
|11-03-2012, 9:19 AM||#19|
Thanks, I tried playing a MKV file with DTS-MA and MP just said the codec wasn't supported.
It would be nice to get the PVR functionality inncluded, maybe even my Sky HD as well.
|11-03-2012, 9:26 AM||#20|
You don't know how to add columns to my table in post 11 do you? I am struggling a bit.....
I have now found that the post limit is 15000 characters. Luckily post 1 is 14999 characters
|11-03-2012, 9:29 AM||#21|
Thanks Robbo for all the time you are putting into this
I find the TV Series plug-in incredibly confusing and time consuming to set up, I have sort of abandoned it for now.
Also, I can't work out what the 'views' section does such as 'Video Views' under the Videos section in MP Configuration. (I am doing fine without it, but sort of curious as to what it does, and it may fox others?).
Trollslayer - +1 here for bitstreaming HD Audio.
The brilliant thing about MediaPortal is that you can configure codecs very precisely, the main reason I switched from 7MC.
I have tried many different combinations, and have found ffdshow best for bitstreaming for me, I think most people use LAV filters instead, but I don't like them so much because there is no tray icon to tell me when it is being used. I do use LAV for all versions of AAC though, as it is the only one I could get to work properly for that.
|11-03-2012, 9:38 AM||#22|
The video views option will let you switch between "shares" mode (just a list of files in you setup shares) and the various "database" views. If you have not setup a video database (by scanning your selected shares in the client config GUI, then nothing will be displayed.
Since I find TV series and Moving Pictures does all I need I have never a video database and watch my home videos either in shares mode, or mixed in with my photos in the photo sideshow.
This guide is at risk of turning into a MONSTER!!!
|Thanks from:|| |
|11-03-2012, 10:30 AM||#23|
Hi Robbo, great that you've taken on this leviathan of a project.
I make no secret of the fact that W7MC meets my needs (except having to pay for it) and to have dabbled a couple of times with MP. Using your guides, will it be possible to identify those activities that just get to a situation where it does all that W7MC does and no more? One of my perceived problems is the amount of work needed just to get it up to the point where it equals WMC and previously, I've got bogged down on a particular aspect, given up, and gone back to WMC. If I could just do this, I could then add features and enhancements to a working project.
|11-03-2012, 10:43 AM||#24|
It is difficult to say, because I have never used MCE. Maybe I need a volunteer to make that judgement for the community when the guide is complete (might you be that person?).
I estimate my guide will only take 2-4 hours to complete. How does that sit in terms of workload?
|11-03-2012, 10:55 AM||#25|
I, of course, will give it a try! Probably next week-end.
|11-03-2012, 12:12 PM||#26|
The last quote meant that it will take the user that length of time to complete (2-4 hours). I am staying with my end of the week completion schedule for writing it :-)
|11-03-2012, 10:26 PM||#27|
OK, I have worked out how to add columns to the table now!
|12-03-2012, 9:26 AM||#28|
Big thanks for this. Looking forward to giving MP a spin when I get it worked out.
|12-03-2012, 1:08 PM||#29|
I think I have the general layout and structure sorted now (it is quite a trick to stay within the <15000 characters per post sometimes!)
The Section 11 and 13 are not fully populated with sub-headings yet. If anyone has any areas which they think MUST be included within these sections then please let me know and I will add them to the list.
I hope to complete the last tiny bit of the Client setup tonight, along with getting the majority of the server setup done too.
Constructive critism always welcome!
|12-03-2012, 6:39 PM||#30|
Coincidentally I installed mediaportal yesterday (I'm from a xbmc/7mce & dvblink background) and the basic setup is straightforward with a DVB-S2 card but I could do with a guide for channel sorting/epg/oscam.
I am having trouble with the mpei on my server (W7 64bit) where it hangs during skin installs but no problem with my client (W7 32bit). Is this a known issue?