Theydon's Perpetual HTPC Build

Discussion in 'Home Entertainment Computers' started by Theydon Bois, Mar 3, 2008.

  1. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Theydon, can i ask a question.

    Have you played with the Home button(scrolling up and down screen, not basic home) icons. I know you use monochrome, i'm using the Xface skin.

    I've added the HD Player plugin on mine and everything works fine, i just wanna neaten up the HD player icon, which i have done and listed the button in the plugin config however i can't see the new icon i've chosen next to the HD Player text, just the original one.

    Do I need to edit an xml file, if so which one
    Do I need to clear the cache, if so how would i go about that.

    Cheers in advance :smashin:
     
  2. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Funnily enough, I have had a play about with the home menu, and unfortunatly, have had no luck with creating new buttons.

    I tried to change the supplied Emulator button with one that looks like the MAME console rather than the N64 icon, to no avail. Its something that is on my list to do, I just havent got round to yet....
     
  3. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Cheers for the quick reply, looks like i'm gonna have to dig deep into the memory and rekindle my xml programming :rotfl:. If i get anywhere i'll let you know while you are sorting out your tv series. Good luck
     
  4. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    I did find this in the Monochrome 1.9 version - will try and have a play later if I can, unless you beat me to it and can then expalin it to me :)
     

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  5. Baron Von Doom

    Baron Von Doom
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    Ive been trying to get the my emulators set up for a while now. Ive got the emulator and roms. Ive got it working but for the life of me cant get any images to work for the roms or emulators.
    Where exactly do i put the images so they show in media portal?
     
  6. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    I saw that one too when i got the 1.9 skin too. I was gonna have a play last night but the nice weather and beer took the better of me :rolleyes:

    I'll be having a play today tho
     
  7. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Hey theydon i managed to play with the hd player button on xface and got it how i want it. With the hd plugin config it makes it very simple, now it's just how to change the existing buttons that are pre loaded in the skin itself. Should have it looking sleek enough soon tho!!!

    This page shows the original home menu button but with the side picture configured.

    [​IMG]

    Then with the home button configured with the side picture changed

    [​IMG]

    And off the home button

    [​IMG]

    Finally the hd plugin configured with the media folder of the skin next to it with the new png files loaded in there

    [​IMG]

    If anyone else is using the xface skin and would like to use the buttons i've made, they are here to download
     

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  8. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Theydon. Changing the original logos for the various home buttons is a doddle. All you have to do is create your new button logo/picci in png format. Put it in your skin/media folder. Rename the original picture to something like button_my pictures1 and then rename your new button to button_my pictures.

    The buttonNF_my pictures is basically what you see when the button is NOT your current selection on screen, giving you the ability to have one picture for unhighlighted and one for a highlighted.

    After you've changed the buttons you then have to clear the cache for your desired skin. i.e. go to the cache folder, highlight the skin you use and delete it. Next time you load MP the skin will create a new cache file and will take longer to load up.

    To get to the cache files you have to go to folder options, enable hidden files and also uncheck hide protected operating system files. click yes and ok.

    Vista: C:\Program Data\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\Cache\(Skin you've just changed)

    An example below
     

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  9. Jim_b0b

    Jim_b0b
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    Sorry, but I havent read all of this thread but looking on your website about ripping dvd's etc... to .ISO I notice you are using AnyDVD / ImgBurn. Are you doing this on a seperate computer or on your HTPC ?

    I suppose what I am trying to get at is, is there any way of popping the DVD / Blu-Ray disc into your HTPC, and going to some sort of "Create Backup Image of Disc" in MP, and it all being automated ?, and placed into "My Videos".

    Thanks for any help.
     
  10. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    I think you hit the nail on the head there - I had simply changed the png of the icon that I wanted, but had not cleared the cache and could not work out why it still showed the same image.

    Where I upgraded Media Portal and the skin to their latest versions, I lost the emulator plug-in, so will need to reinstall - all my roms are still there, but lost all the pics I had and the descriptions I had started adding. :(

    Thanks again!
     
  11. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    I dont blame you for not wanting to read the thread :rolleyes: its huge now...which is why I edited the first post to link to the website I created for this thread.

    It shows all the build configs, choices and descisions regarding my kit and the setup of the software in what hopefully is a far better view. As I mention in my first post recap, I didnt make my mind up about the case until page 2. This thread does however make (imho) a good read if you have half hour to spare and have run out of reading all of your bookmarked websites :smashin:

    Anyway, to answer your questions...

    Yep, I am ripping DVD to ISO on my HTPC. It takes approx an hour to do (Blu's take longer than Red's) and I manually store them in the folder I want them to be, and then have to gain their IMDB info indivudually. There is no automation, but it really does not take that much effort.

    As for automation, I dont think there is anything yet, although I am sure someone may create a batch file process later on down the line.

    Personally, I would prefer someone come up with an automated way to strip the extras out (like CloneDVD) to slightly reduce the size of the ISO than any automation.
     
  12. Jim_b0b

    Jim_b0b
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    Thanks for the answer.

    I suppose im just a bit of a lazy sod!, I would like to just pop in the disc and click a button and off it goes in the background so I can still watch tv :D
     
  13. dazm41

    dazm41
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    hi badbob have you tried using these two excellent bits of software dvd shrink or dvd decrypter both you rip to iso you can find them at afterdawn .com:hiya:
     
  14. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Well I have had a nightmare upgrade, mostly because of the fact that little details bug me.

    I had MP RC1 and Monochrome 1.9 and all was well, apart from the fact that MP when it started would say version 0.2.3.0 even though the rest of it and the configuration quite clearly says version 1. :confused:

    I put up with it for a while, but think, no, I must have done it wrong, so uninstall MP, leaving all details intact and run the RC1 setup again. However I still end up with 0.2.3.0 in the brief white box before it loads into RC1. :confused:

    So, I uninstall the lot, and then have that doh! moment as I realise I have just deleetd all my fan art, tv banners and series thumbs and rom images. :eek:

    Sighing, I install it all from scratch, and install RC1 and Mono 1.9 and when it loads, it still shows 0.2.3.0, meaning that I had lost all that work and time for nothing.... :eek: :confused: :rolleyes:

    Then I realise that the 1.9 has the same TVshow 'style' as 1.8 that I didnt like when using FAN ART mode, TV listing to the right but more spaced out, and the episode info at the top stretched, info synopsis on the left obscuring the art, and finally, the lettering too big overwriting itself. :suicide:

    So, I delete the Mono 1.9, clean the cache, and install the better (imho) 1.7 and slowly start to get back to normallity. :thumbsup:

    Trouble is, I liked the way 1.9 showed its videos:

    [​IMG]

    I then thought I had it working in a mishmass before, so just did what I had done previously, opened 1.9, copied all the files, overwrote when prompted with no exceptions, and low and behold I still had the video format showing as above, while retaining my TV shows as I like them. :smashin:

    Oh, and I have started on the logos (note top right corner):

    [​IMG]

    Will update the post to show how its done if anyone interested tonight/tomorrow. :lesson:
     
  15. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    I really feel for you theydon, losing all that hard work, but at least now you are on your way to the perfect customised MP.

    With the logo's you are refering to the channel logos and XVid ones. But i like them, so please update to explain. Many thanks
     
  16. Baron Von Doom

    Baron Von Doom
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    I to would be interested :thumbsup:
    thanks
    mark
     
  17. Alister Willis

    Alister Willis
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    I'm also interested in seeing how to do the logos etc. :thumbsup:
    Thanks for all the information in this thread.
     
  18. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Oh ok then..:D Here you go........
     
  19. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Guide to setting up TV Logos.

    This should see you through the process of setting up the logos that add just that little extra nice touch to your media Portal setup. It adds the Network it aired on, along with extra info such as genre, codecs, and show time length.

    Typical example of logo's

    [​IMG]

    Steps

    Note: All relate to a Vista OS, with Media Portal RC1 and Monochrome 1.9. I am sure it will work on other skins etc, but I cant confirm 100%.

    1. Create a folder path C:\programData\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\Thumbs\MPTVSeriesLogos

    2. Within Monochrome 1.9 there is a folder called MP-TVSeries, and in that there is a folder called Logos. Copy all those files into the thumbs\MPTVSerieslogos folder you created in step 1.

    3. Still in within the Monochrome 1.9 folder, go back into the MP-TVSeries folder, and open the folder called Logo rules. Copy both files into your c:\program files\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\skin\monochrome folder.

    4. Open Media Portal Configuration, and browse to the plugins section and open the configuration of the MP-TVSeries plugin. Select the media Portal Display control tab and browse to the Logo Configuration section. Select Import, and browse for the MP-TVSeries.logorules file you placed in the skins folder in step 3 above.

    The Logo configuration section should now look something like the pic below.

    [​IMG]

    5. Now select the templates button, and start customising your 'view', adding extra logo rules (for sound codecs, show time lengths or if x264 files etc) as you want them. I have added my file if you want a little headstart, but I did cheat on the template for my xvid logo - by modifying a display template to cover all video sizes (such as 4:3 and 16:9) as I wanted the XVID logo on all my files.

    The end results

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Appearance in the main screen

    [​IMG]

    Troubleshooting

    Q. My logos are not showing?

    Sometimes, logos do not show correctly, and there are a couple of things to check.

    Genre tag - this may be mistagged in the TVSeries configuration. Check the pic below to see if your show has been tagged at all and use the format |GENRE| to amend if missing. You can also remove additional Genres here as well (Grey's Anatomy was classed as Drama Comedy Soap)

    [​IMG]

    Show length - If you havent set them all up, it could be that that show actually runs shorter. Lost, Desperate housewives etc come under the 45min tag, not 60 minutes, and Simpsons and the Office come at 20 mins, rather than 30.

    Check the filenames. My Comedy tag was initially not showing as it was named comedy1.png. After renaming it to comdey.png, all worked fine.

    Q. They dont appear in the main menu when you first open the TVSeries, but do after you have browsed a show?

    Yep, thats right. I dont know why, but thats what happens. If you find out how to get round it, let me know :)

    Q. In step 3, you say copy both files, but dont make reference to the other one. What does that file do?

    Hmm, dont rightly know to be honest, but when I find out, I'll let you know, or better still you tell me and I will amend this guide :smashin:
     
  20. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Many Thanks Theydon, just wondering....

    Have you got My TV Series in the plugins section or on your home screen?
     
  21. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    In the main screen mate. Its one of my most used screens, so its not buried in the plug-ins (which I think I may have turned off to keep the items down.)
     
  22. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Got my logos going now, cheers. :smashin:

    Using the Xface skin is posing many problems with the TV series plugin for me. Pictures aren't lining up with blank boxes where they should be. This is probably due to there not being an Xface specific MP-TV Series folder when you download the skin and having the correct files and folders for this to happen.

    Looks like i'm in for the long hall modifying the xml (if there is one) for the TV series plugin, i can't stand it when things look slightly out, really bugs me.
     
  23. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Or change over to the Monochrome skin? Or try the MP forums to see if that skin has plans to accomodate the TVseries skins etc.

    Monochrome (and the designers other skin) seems to be updated quite often (from versions 1.6 to 1.9 in the 2 months I have had my HTPC) and has introduced the TVlogos and the ability to use lots of other plug-ins - giving appropriate pages and icons for those plug-ins.
     
  24. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Tried the MP forums, asked the question but had no reply in the xface skin thread. Might try the more general area now tho.

    I'm quite liking the Xface skin and am enjoying the customisation of it and the odd challenge it throws at me, but MP is massive in rights of customization and is certainly not a plug n play front end if you want it to have a wow factor.

    I'm onto my next task at the mo, which is trying to put some winamp links for a internet radio station called digitally imported.
     
  25. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    I did have a couple of Radio stations, and had KissFM and Heart running, but lost it all when I uninstalled. I will be adding it back again though, just because I can :smashin:

    I need to reinstate my Emulators first though...
     
  26. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Monochrome version 2 is now out.

    I tried it on my laptop, but I have other versions, so it reports differently, and I dont have any of my ripped TVshows on here, and its way past my bedtime to start mucking about with more HTPC stuff. :rotfl:

    You must have the latest SVN build (beta) and so not advisiable on your HTPC system unless you like danger :D.

    I will test it properly on my laptop though, and let you know the TV section screens.

    One thing I noticed while installing is that it now wraps it all up in a pretty installer, and as you install, you can choose your options, like whether you are using fanart for instance, which means some of my guides will become redundant......:rolleyes:
     
  27. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Stickied? :eek: Really appreciate it, thanks! :thumbsup:

    Just tested Monochrome V2 on my laptop, as well as the new MediaPortal RC2 beta - the latest SVN (unsure on the acronym).

    Monochrome 2 - As mentioned, this has turned into a nice installer package now, and can be customised as it installs. Curiously, despite asking about whether you wish to use fanart, it does not create the fanart folder for you as part of the installer process..

    He has added little 'florishes' to the way the menus flick from one screen to the other which look very nice (for example the text comes out of the screen towards you in transition). The main thing to note is the sadly ugly TVSeries layout is the same (the show synopsis drops from the left top to left bottom and the layout is the wider glass dressing table like menu structure.)

    I for one will be sticking with my hybrid 1.9 for Films and 1.7 for TV. :smashin:

    Media Portal RC2 beta - I have not examined this much, but they have added a simple and advanced menu switch, which at the moment I think only turns off the plugin section while in simple mode.

    The other thing you will notice straight away is a small embeded shortcut list to folders relevant to the Media Portal installation, like thumbs, skin, logs etc.
     
  28. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Monochrome 2 sounds pretty sweet but i think i'll stick to my xface now i'm getting it the way i like it.

    I had a few issues with MP 1.0.0.0 RC1 and have it almost stable now, apart from watching mkv containers where I get a windows dialog that pops up saying "decoder cannot be found for new track. Track type: ASS and another for SRT/UTF-8, i hit ok and the movie plays fine with DTS or DD running thru the amp. Dunno if you know anything about this.

    So i'm a bit reluctant to try a beta at the mo ;) do you find it quite stable?
     
  29. Theydon Bois

    Theydon Bois
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    Sorry - should have been more clear - this was TESTED on my laptop, not on my HTPC. They test versions called SVNs which are released weekly? and are beta's, for things they are testing for the RC2 version they will release at some time in the future.

    When they release the RC2 version, I will test it, and then try it on my HTPC...

    As for you problem, are you on Vista using KMplayer to play the mkvs?
     
  30. Daveybryce

    Daveybryce
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    Using Vista, have Mediaportal open at my HD folder for mkv containers, hit the okay button on film and it hangs on black screen for about 10 secs before dialog box pops up and press select on the remote again and the movie plays fine. It doesn't hinder playback at all but i like things to run as they should and look right, you know how it is

    Codecs I have installed are

    coreAVC pro
    FFDshow night pack (or whatever it's called)
    AC3 filter,
    CCC comunity pack with directvobsub and Haali splitter

    EDIT: Playback software
    Mediaplayer classic
    Cyberlink 7.3
    WMP 11

    I would have thought that all those would cover pretty much all thrown at it. I have AC3 as preferred audio, have disabled ac3 & dts in FFdshow audio. CoreAVC runs x264's, ffdshow for xvid/divx and dvd/tv upscaling.

    Am i missing something????????:confused:
     

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