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SageTV V7.0.15 Beta is Now Available

August 11, 2010 Leave a comment

Below are the detailed release notes for V7.0.15:

SageTV V7.0.15 Beta 8/11/2010

Core Updates
1. Fixed bug where we did not preserve the current title # when storing watched information for DVDs and BluRays. (it was broken when watched tracking for DVDs/BDs was updated recently)
2. Fixed bug where transcoding files with subtitle streams would fail sometimes (subtitles are now disabled by the transcoder)
3. Fixed issues with embedded audio streams inside of HD audio streams being detected by the transcoder
4. Added server based property “seeker/num_recent_watches_to_keep” which defaults to 2 and controls how many recently watched shows are protected from deletion. This has always been there; but now the setting is configurable in the properties file.
5. Fixed bug related to new watched tracking for DVDs/BluRays where resuming playback of a DVD would cause exceptions to occur and loss of playback control.
6. Fixed regression bug where disallowing adding a channel with a zero station ID would prevent creation of the internal zero-station ID channel used for all imported content.
7. Fixed bug where transcoding from AVIs did not work properly
8. Added Italy-Genova DVB-T frequency
9. Fixed bug where live TV from network encoders was missing the video stream in format detection

Windows Updates
1. Fixed bug where we didn’t always select the right audio decoder to use in DirectShow if all the audio tracks didn’t have the same audio format.
2. Fixed bug on Windows with 3D rendering where if SageTV was started on one monitor and then moved to another monitor with a larger display size, then part of the user interface would be cutoff at full screen.
3. Changed the default setting for the autodial property to be false since this sometimes causes issues on Win7/Vista.
4. Fix: if a channel is missing a tune entry in frq on windows 7, there is trouble tuning an ATSC channel, ERROR (-4,0x8007001f).
5. Fixed bug with DirectShow DVD Player where selecting a subtitle language didn’t automatically turn on subtitles as well
6. Fixed bug where the audio tracks listed in the UI didn’t always match the actual ordering used
7. Regression fix for exiting FSE and trying forever to reset the D3D device

Linux Updates
1. Fix: linux crash when EPG scanning. after fflush fifo empty, the push data thread tries to use empty buffer in fifo (thread racing issue)
2. Fixed bug where seamless file switching would wait forever until it found the transition point, which is bad if there’s no signal

Extender Updates
1. Disable DVB subpicture selection for the HD100 since it doesn’t support display of them.
2. Send a command to disable subpicture display for MPEG2-PS files to avoid hangs on media extenders that cannot display DVB subpictures properly
3. Fixed bug where bd-xxx subpicture PIDs were not properly parsed (these were used for DVB subs inside MPEG2-PS files)

Studio/API Updates
1. Added new Widget API call “ExecuteWidgetChainInCurrentMenuContext(Widget)” which is similar to ExecuteWidgetChain but instead of using an empty variable context it will execute within the currently loaded menu’s variable context.

STV Updates
1. After selecting an audio language or subtitle in dialog during playback, wait up to 500 ms while checking to see if the change occurred before refreshing the list & marking the currently active language or subtitle.
2. Allowed use of Watched command to set/clear Watched status for DVDs & BDs.
3. Updated Standard theme preview image.
4. Updated preview images for playing video as menu background or in preview window.
5. Hidden Extras: Fixed display of alternate view names in malore menu slide out options.
6. Hidden Extras: Added malore menu options to 1) draw separator lines between items, 2) draw outlines around Manual Recordings & Favorites, 3) draw airing category background colors always, not the default category color, or never.
7. Hidden Extras: Updated malore menu focus highlight image – MaloreHighlight.png
8. Hidden Extras: Updated malore menu font styles for right-side episode lists & upper info area. Bold titles for Fav/MR; Italic for Watched; Plain text for all else.
9. Hidden Extras: Solved excessive refresh issue when using a malore menu for the first time.

The beta can be found here.

Categories: SageTV

SageTV V7.0.14 Beta is Now Available

August 6, 2010 Leave a comment

SageTV V7.0.14 beta just released. This is only to fix a few small issues:

Windows Updates
1. Fixed regression issue on Windows where QAM tuning didn’t work right on Windows 7/Vista

Linux Updates
1. Fixed regression issue where SageTV would crash doing an ATSC EPG data scan

You can download the new beta here.

Categories: SageTV

SageTV v7.0.13 Beta Released

August 4, 2010 Leave a comment

A new beta for SageTV (v7.0.13) has just been released. Unfortunately I can’t test it out since for whatever reason my SageTV license no longer works (sticks waiting for Customer Support to sort the issue out). The two big issues I have encountered which prevent me from considering SageTV v7 as my full time front end are:

(1) SageTV v7 internal splitter does not properly handle DTS(MA) and TrueHD
(2) Support for internal subtitles in mkvs not working

There was mention to “Fixed bug where we wouldn’t always select the highest quality audio track as the default for DirectShow. TrueHD/DTS-HD are now preferred, and then DTS/AC3 and any ties are resolved by the highest number of channels.” so maybe some progress has been made to fixing my #1 issue.

You can also read my thoughts about what I hope is in store for SageTV down the road to really grab my attention.

You can see the changelog below and download the new beta here

SageTV V7.0.13 Beta 8/4/2010

Core Updates
1. Merged code for the transcoder with the latest public version; this should resolve many issues relating to offline transcoding, placeshifter transcoding and thumbnail generation
2. Added optimization to the background image loader so it doesn’t use URL objects in one of its Map since generating their hashcode can cause a DNS lookup.
3. Added support for setting DVDs/BluRays to be completely watched. This will never happen automatically for DVDs; but will for BluRays if the whole movie is watched (for DVDs, due to navigation which creates non-linear content this isn’t reliably determined). An STV update will be released after this beta that includes the functionality in the STV for this (the Watched command can be used to toggle the state in the new STV)
4. Changes to the property setting for EPG import plugins can now be dynamically changed while SageTV is running and the change will take effect on the next run of the EPG update system.
5. Fixed bug where RF inputs on a fixed channel (i.e. channel 3/4) would still end up creating channel lineups for all possible channels tuned with their external tuner (usually this was either 1000 or 10000 channels)
6. Changed the default value for multipass encoding to be false through the property “transcoder/enable_multipass_encoding”
7. Automatically set the deinterlace option in the transcoder when converting interlaced videos (temporary until the transcoder can output interlaced video properly). This is controlled by the property “xcode_auto_deinterlace” which defaults to true.
8. Fixed bug where the Wiz.bin file would not be saved correctly if there was metadata in an item that exceeded 64k in length.
9. Added support for download timestamp tracking for MPEG2 Program Stream files. (this mainly affects the PlayOn STVI plugin so it now will show the actual download progress of the file just like for other online videos)
10. Fixed bug where certain glyphs had their height larger than the actual font height (this was supposed to be fixed before, but the fix was incorrect)
11. Fixed bug where external process execution wouldn’t always wait for the stdin/stdout streams to be completely closed before returning all of the processes output.
12. Added property “enable_converting_imported_videos_to_tv_recordings” which defaults to true. If set to false, then video files imported that have TV metadata will NOT be automatically tagged as ‘TV Recordings’ and will show up in the ‘Imported Videos’ section instead of the ‘TV Recordings’ section.
13. Optimizations to reduce excessive requests for format detection on files who are failing format detection
14. MPEG2 Transport Stream files will now have their thumbnails extracted from the specified offset in the file (15 seconds by default) along w/ searching for an optimized thumbnail. In prior versions MPEG2-TS files always started searching at the beginning of the file due to issues with the thumbnail generator.
15. Performance enhancements to the techniques used to find an optimal thumbnail in a MediaFile
16. Added property “autorotate_jpeg_images” which determines whether or not the core should automatically rotate JPEG images with their orientation bit set when displaying them. This defaults to true; changing it requires a server restart since it invalidates any rotated images in the image cache.
17. Updated transcode formats to use parameters compatible with the new version of the transcoder (this will be required for any custom transcode formats that use H264 encoding)
18. Removed the ‘Deinterlaced’ transcode formats; this is now handled automatically by the transcoder (it will deinterlace any interlaced video streams now automatically…this is temporary until we figure out how to get the transcoder to output interlaced video)
19. Added H264 MKV transcoding profiles (they’re in the MPEG4 sections since H264 is MPEG4 Part 10)
20. Added property “fully_reimport_playlists_every_scan” which defaults to false. If set to true; then every time a library import scan is done; any Playlists that originated from external playlist files will be fully reimported (i.e. the Playlists in SageTV’s database will be synchronized with the external playlist files, using the external playlist file as the master)
21. Removed the newly added capability of disabling all transparency in the UI on the MediaMVP since this made certain areas of the UI unreadable (like the EPG w/ category colors)Don’t popup UI notifications if there are issues restarting a recording while it is occurring. If the UI is unattended this can stack up dialogs forever which is essentially a thread leak. System messages will still be posted and errors regarding starting a recording at the beginning will still be popped up in the UI.
22. Don’t popup UI notifications if there are issues restarting a recording while it is occurring. If the UI is unattended this can stack up dialogs forever which is essentially a thread leak. System messages will still be posted and errors regarding starting a recording at the beginning will still be popped up in the UI.
23. Fixed bug where fonts could end up being loaded multiple times and some glyph sizing information would be invalid due to this.
24. Fixed failure in searching that could occur if “wizard/search_media_formats=true” was set (it’s not by default)
25. Added support for extracting the Title and Thumbnail image that exists in some BDMVs. They are retrieved from BDMV/META/DL/bdmt_eng.xml.
26. Various fixes to MPEG format detection code

Linux Updates
1. Fixed regression issue where ATSC/QAM was broken on Linux in the last build
2. Fixed regression issue with slow tuning due to changes made in the last build
3. Reduce the priority of the transcoder process on non-Windows platforms by running it with ‘nice’ (can be disabled by setting xcode_reduce_process_priority=false)

Windows Updates
1. Fixed bug where we wouldn’t always select the highest quality audio track as the default for DirectShow. TrueHD/DTS-HD are now preferred, and then DTS/AC3 and any ties are resolved by the highest number of channels.
2. Automatically add AC3Filter as the audio decoder when playing back video files if no specific DTS decoder has been setup in the properties file.
3. Disable insertion of the CC decoder filter if we’re not playing back an MPEG2 TS/PS file since this can cause aspect ratio issues in DirectShow
4. Whenever there are failures in the Direct3D rendering engine; try forever to rebuild the 3D system and don’t give up after 3 tries. In Windows 7 there are more situations where this can occur for extended periods of time if the display powers off or the system is going into standby.
5. Fixed potential problem with files not getting removed from the async deletion queue due to the operating system not releasing the file lock quick enough after closing the file.
6. Fixed bug where the stream mappings for the audio tracks for BluRays didn’t always match the UI when using DirectShow
7. Fixed bug where switching audio tracks didn’t work properly when switching away from and then back to the same track if no audo decoder was specified but an audio renderer was.
8. Fixed issue where digital TV didn’t work in 7.0.12 (regression issue)

Extender Updates
1. Update to frequency of buffer pushing to media extenders when the current file is being recording; intended to help with updates relating to DVB subtitles.
2. Fixed bug where switching audio or subtitle tracks with the DVD player on media extenders would cause playback to seek forward 10-15 seconds.
3. Fixed server crash when viewing picture slideshow on extenders (same fix in the ImageLoader patch on the forums from 7.0.12)

Studio/API Updates
1. Updated MediaFile API call GetMediaFileMetadata to also include support for getting the Index # for any specific track. (this is used for interaction with FFMPEG)
2. When a metadata property is set via SetMediaFileMetadata; if no change would result from the API call, then nothing is done (previously it would treat anything as a change and build new objects with those values and update the external .properties file)
3. Fixed exception that could occur if the GetMediaFileMetadata API call was made on a MediaFile object that had a null format object
4. Fixed bug in Studio where STVI Generation and difference creation/application would not use the last defined Widget property name at all (this was the SmoothTracker key currently)
5. Added Airing API call SetWatchedTimes(Airing, WatchedEndTime, RealStartTime) which can be used to set explicitly what the last watched time is for an Airing. Useful if viewing is done outside of the regular SageTV media players (i.e. web clients).
6. Updated Database API call GroupByMethod to support a grouping of type “Categories” which will group all items into coalesced category names. The category names can come from the Category or Subcategory field (it will be listed in each), and if an item has a comma or semicolon delimited list of names that list will be broken apart and the item will be listed in those multiple categories.
7. Added Database API call GetAllGroupingCategories which gets all the possible keys that will result if the new GroupByMethod is used with the “Categories” technique.
8. Fixed bugs where GetFileEndTime, GetDurationForSegment and GetEndForSegment in the MediaFile API didn’t return correct values if using the background file download API
9. Added new Utility API call “AreCoreAnimationsSupported” which returns true if animations can be used w/ the current client. They are disabled for the MediaMVP and for placeshifter clients that are not on the same LAN.
10. Added property “studio/save_v6_compatible_stvs” which defaults to false; if set to true then STVs can be saved in the Studio in a format that can be loaded by SageTV V6 (but they must not include any Effect Widgets; the compatability just removes any Widget properties that were outside the range that was used in V6)

Plugin System Updates
1. Don’t post system messages about plugin updates if it’s a Library type plugin

STV Updates
1. Fixed YouTube video URL-finding issue in STV and online video links properties file.
2. Removed ‘Razr’ from the preset sort order of conversion formats & renamed the property controlling the format sort order to transcoder/sorting_order2.
3. Can click outside a right-hand slide-in options menu to close it.
4. Added “Edit Video Information” option in imported video & group options dialogs, with ability to assign MPAA ratings and categories.
5. Hidden Extras: Initial conversion of malore menus to v7 format.
6. Hidden Extras: Displayed disk space bar in menu footer. Added config option to set the bar’s percent width of the screen.
7. Removed option to turn off video group options dialog because that dialog can be optionally opened by using Select or Info.
8. Allow video group options dialog to open even when the group consists of only DVDs/BDs. Offer options appropriate only for the various types of videos in the group.
9. Advanced Video Browser Options: added option to control whether TV recordings found in import directories are considered to be recordings or imported videos.
10. Fixed filename sorting in video browser’s folder view.
11. Change theme tracking property to “theme/currently_active7″ so it is different from the one used for the SageTV3 STV.
12. If podcast has no enclosure, try looking for a Link entry instead.
13. Improved handling of empty (no items or all filtered out) media browser views.
14. Forced reset to the default ‘Standard’ theme if the current theme is ‘Standard SDTV’.
15. Fixed Favorite Manager’s title sorting so it is case insensitive & ignores leading articles when that option is enabled.
16. When playing a group of recordings, leave the group sorted as-is in order to use the new subgroup sorting option instead of always sorting the subgroup items by their recording dates.
17. Disable animation options on clients where animations are not supported and don’t cycle through subgroup items when animations are disabled.
18. Added Category view to Video Browser.
19. Photo Browser: added ‘Autorotate JPEG Images for Display’ option in Menu Options. After closing the Menu Options dialog, offer to restart SageTV if the option was changed and warns if the restart will affect MR or Fav recordings in progress.
20. Fixed issue where themes failed to load properties from parent themes.
21. Added additional channel scan check to prevent Station ID of 0 & check for inability to add a new channel.
22. Removed “Turn this dialog off” option from video group options dialog, since the Select vs Info option is there instead.
23. Fixed places where Info didn’t replicate Select command actions when Info is set to open group options dialogs.
24. Updated Favorite channel limit dialog so that the text saying a channel has airings of the Favorite is not removed or updated until selecting Any or Refresh Channel List. (The markers for channels with airings reflect the channel-limited Favorite’s conditions at the time of the dialog opening or the last selection of Any or Refresh.)
25. Fixed issue where scrolling a table would initially display all the scrolling-into-view items using the focused text transparency level instead of the normal transparency level.

Categories: SageTV

May 21, 2010 Leave a comment

I noted last week that the expected released of Media Browser Cronos had been pushed back to May 20th. Well, it appears it will be pushed back for another week, with the expected release now set at May 27th. It appears that upgrading to Cronos is causing cache corruption. I am actually glad to see that the developers have not released Cronos yet as I would much rather have a polished product that gets delayed then something rushed out just to hit a date. Until Cronos comes out I will be spending more time with the latest SageTV release and try to run it through the paces.

Categories: MediaBrowser, SageTV

SageTV V7 Beta Available For Download

May 20, 2010 Leave a comment

Last night I put together a quick post about some exciting new features coming to SageTV. One new feature is the release of SageTV Version 7, which is supposed to be a complete re-write of SageTV. Well, looks like the beta is now officially available for download, you can get more information here:

http://forums.sagetv.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48421

I just updated to version 7 so be on the lookout for my thoughts.

Categories: SageTV

SageTV to Get MyMovies?

January 11, 2010 Leave a comment

I have had the fortune (or misfortune) of helping PluckyHD (author of SageMovieWall) test out some of his apps/ideas. Well, I am happy to announce that PluckyHD is now working on porting MyMovies over to SageTV. I personally feel this is a big step forward and could get some people on the fence rethinking SageTV over Windows Media Center. More importantly, you can completely avoid using BMI which I was never too fond of. I have had a chance to give the MyMovies port a test run on my PC and so far it is coming along nicely.

You can read the rest of my writeup as well as some screenshots here:

http://www.mediasmartserver.net/2010/01/11/mymovies-coming-to-sagetv/

SageMovieWall (SMW) Version 4.01 Released

October 6, 2009 Leave a comment

PluckyHD has just released v 4.01 of his popular SageMC UI called SageMovieWall. It appears only some minor tweaks were made. Download can be found here. For more information on SMW, check out my post here.

Changelog:

  • Fixed File-System View to work with latest BMI version.
  • Fixed h.264 logo displaying for dvds regardless of type
  • Fixed Number listener should work correctly in all views now
  • Added Watched Filter
  • Added Watched Icon and option to display or not display
  • Added version checks to homepage options menu for better troubleshooting.
Categories: SageTV, SMW

SageTV – SageMovieWall (SMW) Version 4 Released

August 28, 2009 Leave a comment
Several months ago I came across and documented my experience with SageMovieWall v3. SageTV member PluckyHD had created an alternative UI to access your video collection from within SageMC. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to be a beta tester for version 4, and am very excited to announce that Version 4 has now been released to the public. You can head over to SageTV to follow PluckyHD.
Requirements:

1. SageTV version 6.6 or greater

2. SageMC version 6.3.9 or greater

3. BMT v3.0.9 (see instructions here) Or Phoenix API v1.42 or greater (download here)

Installation (Skip to step 4 if you arlready have the latest version of SageMC installed):

1. Download and install latest version of SageTV, currently V6.6. Download can be found here.

2. Download and install SageMC16x9 Version 6.xFull Install Package. Download can be found here.

  • To install make sure SageTV is shut down (service as well if applicable). Extract all files to C:\Program Files\SageTV\SageTV.
  • Now open up SageTV. From the Setup Menu go to Detailed Setup -> Advanced -> SageTV Application Package and select SageMC_169.xml. After I load I get an error message from SageTV, so I simply shut down SageTV and reopen. Once again, test functionality before proceeding.

3. Download and install latest SageMC, currently 6.3.9a. Download can be found here

  • To install make sure SageTV is shut down (service as well if applicable). Extract all files to C:\Program Files\SageTV\SageTV.
  • Now open up SageTV, and in SageMC go to Settings, select “Load STV”, and load SageMC_169.xml

4. Download and install latest beta of SageMovieWall (SMW), currently v4. Download can be found here

  • To install make sure SageTV is shut down (service as well if applicable). Extract all files to C:Program Files\SageTV\SageTV.
  • Install Actor Images (optional). Download can be found here. Extract all files to //centralfanartartfolder/Actors
  • Import latest version of BMI (optional).Import of the add-in is required before importing SageMovieWall if you use the add-in.
  • Delete All Properties files from properties file that start with “pluckyhd” if you used a previous version.
  • If this is the first time installing SMW, follow these steps:
  • a. Start back up SageTV and in SageMC go to Settings, select “Import STVi”, and load SageMovieWall.xml.

    b. Go to SageMC Setup -> Main -> Screen Specific Options -> Video Library -> Custom Video Library Screen and load Sage Movie Wall.

    c. Verify that Core Animations is enabled. SageMC Setup -> Main -> Global UI Options -> Animation.

  • If you already have a version of SMW installed, follow this steps:
  • a. Start back up SageTV.

    b. Go to My Menu -> Settings -> Load STV -> Browse and select the current SageMC xml you are using, but ignore copies. For example, I am running SageMC_6_3_9a_46. Under Browse I see SageMC_6_3_9a_46-1, SageMC_6_3_9a_46-2, etc… Don’t select any of these copies, just the original xml.

    c. Now go back to “Import STVi” and load SageMovieWall.xml

  • It all was done correctly SMW should now load from your “Videos”

5. When you first go into “My Videos” the SMV Scaling Options screen will appear. For optimal performance set the following options:

  • Scaling -> On
  • Backgrounds -> Scaled to 1080p/I (Set to highest resolution your display is capable of doing. Will scale all large backgrounds to that resolution for faster performance)
  • Small Backgrounds -> 50% (Set the percentage to scale small backgrounds. Number is based on large backgrounds. Recommend 50%)
  • Now select “Scale All Items Now” (Scales all Small and Big backgrounds now for the entire movie collection. This process will run in the background and is processor intensive, recommend not trying to navigate SageMC while this is running)
  • Once scaling has been completed, now select “Perform All Image Transformations” (Performs all image reflections and transformations for all views of SMW, overwrites any existing. This process will run in the background and is processor intensive, recommend not trying to navigate SageMC while this is running)
  • With Scaling and Image Transformations complete, restart Sagetv and Sagetv Service to clear out cache. Scaling/transformations must be on done on each client!! Extenders only require it be done on the server or one extender.

Sage Movie Wall Scaling Options Menu

———————————————————————————————

Layout/Features:

Sage Movie Wall Home Page:

A. Sage Movie Wall Home Page Options

* Home Page Theme – there are 3 themes to choose from: (1) Star Wars, (2) Joker, and (3) Reflections

Star Wars Theme:

Joker Theme

Reflections Theme

* Show Theatre Title/Theatre Title – if you want to add a custom title to appear when the Home Page loads

* Theatre Logos – choose which logos you want to display on your Home Page (such as dts-hd)

* Custom Tag Edits – edit custom tags on video files

* Show on Menu – Choose which items you want on the homepage menu

* Scaling Menu – revisit scaling menu options

B. Sage Movie Wall Home Page Menu (you can adjust as per v. above)

* Filters – if you want to view only certain videos, such as those tagged as Blu-Ray

* SortBy – select how you want to view your videos, such as by file-system if you videos are in multiple folders and that is how you want to navigate there

* Release Year

* Actors

* Directors

* Writers

* Categories

* Tags

* Recent – will show the last 8 videos added to SageTV. You can access those videos directly from here

* Movie Wall – takes you to your movie wall

* Clear – clear any filters that have been selected

———————————————————————————————

Movie Wall

A. Video Options:

* Add to custom group

* Add to Playlist

* Change Category

* Change Subcategory

* Generate .my file

(Screenshot of Video Options Menu)

B. OSD Options:

* Rescan Import Folders

* Manage Video Folders

* Manage Group

* Meta-Data Options

* Fanart OptionsPlay Other File

(Screenshot of OSD Options Menu)

C. View/Filter:

* Sort – shows how video collection is being sorted

* View – Options include List View, Wall View, Cover Flow, 3D Wall, Grid View, Small List, and What’s To Come.

* Filter – show what, if any, filters have been selected

* Play

* SearchPlaylists

(Screenshot of View/Filter Menu)

D. Wall Options:

* Poster Options

  • Halo – If On focused poster slightly smaller with “Halo”
  • Poster Case – Select the cover/case you want over the selected movie. Options are None, Round with cover, Square, or Clear. Halo must be off.
  • Transparency – Adjust the transparency or darkness of unselected posters
  • Number Rows – sets the number of rows displayed (up/down)
  • Number of Columns – sets the number of columns displayed (left/right)
  • Scrolling – Sets the scrolling of the wall to either vertical or horizontal
  • Wrapping – Sets if movie titles will wrap around.
  • Info Overlay
  • Side Background Bar

* Cover/Grid Options

  • Covers – Sets desired look/feel of coverflow posters. Options are Clear, None, Round with cover, and Square
  • Grid Color – If using Grid View, sets the grid cover. Options are Blue, Burnt or Black.

(Screenshot of Cover/Grid Options Menu)

* Universal Options

  • Load Scaling Menu – Load Scaling Menu on startup
  • Scrapper – Ignores the “A” and “An” from titles when sorting
  • Right Scroll Bar – Toggles on/off letter scroll bar
  • Cache Images – Caches all Posters at load of initial view in background, not recommended for extenders
  • Select Function – Select what Select/OK does. Options are Play, Program Info Screen, or SMW Info
  • SMW Home Page on Load – Sets whether SMW Home Page loads on startup
  • Logos – Turns on/off Logos for all views
  • Fast Scroll – Blanks all areas of screen expect for table, makes for faster scrolling when holding up/down/left/right
  • Animations – Turns on/off animations globally throughout SMW
  • Info View stick on exit – Wall View or List View ill stick on exit (make it permanent)
  • Include TV – If on includes TV files in the “None” filter. If off only shows TV files when on TV filter
  • Include No Fanart – Same as Include TV option except for Fanart
  • Drill Down View – Set Drill Down for file-system when navigating inside folders. Options are Coverflow, Grid View, Small List, Wall View, or List View
  • ClapperBoards – If On clapperboards are shown instead of text
  • Dynamic Update – If on current view dynamically updates with the highlighted categories
  • Random Fanart BG – If On backgrounds are random, if Of backgrounds are static
  • Fanart Options – to change default fanart options

(Screeshot of Universal Options Menu)

* List Options

  • Wrapping of List – Wraps list up and down
  • List Auto Slide – Turns On/Off info auto slide
  • Delay for Auto Slide – time to wait before autoslide occurs. Auto Slide must be “On”
  • Scrollable Info List – When in Info View makes a list of 11 movies scrollableFixed Focus – Sets Focus Fixed in center of list

(Screenshot of List Options Menu)

* Edit Options

  • IMDB Search
  • Metadata Fanart Lookup
  • Edit Title

(Screenshot of Edit Options Menu)

ADDITIONAL SCREENSHOTS:

* Wall View

* Things To Come View

* Small List View

* List View

* List View (With Scrollable Info List set to “On”)

* Grid View

* CoverFlow View

* CoverFlow View (With Info)

* CoverFlow View (With Info.Cast)

* 3D Wall View

* Categories Filter View

* Actors Filter View

Categories: SageTV, SMW

TV Explorer – A SageTV Screen

August 5, 2009 Leave a comment

One of my biggest criticisms of SageTV is that I felt it had fallen behind the other media center programs out there in terms of UI appearance. Functionality is always a top priority but let’s face it, everyone knows chicks dig a flashy UI! I highlighted several weeks ago here a new veiw called SageMovieWall created by member PluckyHD, which is focused on video playback (a new version is coming due soon which is really exciting, but I won’t spill any details until it is made public). With the Videos section covered, member razrsharpe has decided to address the TV section next with a new view called TV Explorer that compliments SMW very nicely. A few caveats before I proceed. First, TV Explorer is still in its initial release (v1) so it is possible that the UI will change and there may still be bugs that need to be addressed. Second, I have only touched the surface with implementing live tv recordings (currently about 99% of my tv shows are ripped episodes from my box set dvds) so I can’t comment on how well this interacts with TV Explorer. Now with that out of the way, let’s get started. Installation is very easy:

Requirements:

Installation Instructions:

  1. Shut down SageTV including the service if installing on the server
  2. Extract the “TVExplorer_1_00.zip” file to your sage installation directory (usually C:\Program Files\SageTV\SageTV)
  3. Restart SageTV
  4. Navigate to My Menu -> Settings -> Import STVi
  5. Browse and Select TVExplorer_1_00.xml. Yes to import the STVi
  6. To show TV Explorer on the main menu (you can edit the sage_menu.xml file directly but I am just going to highlight changing from within SageTV): From the Main Menu in SageMC go to Options -> Main Menu Options -> New… -> New Internal Screen. Browse and select TV Explorer. You can name it whatever you would like. After you have from the same menu go to File… -> Save Menu File and save.
  7. Now go back to the main SageMC menu and you should be greeted by your new TV Explorer link as seen below!!!

You can head over to the TV Explorer thread here.

SageMC Main Menu:

TV Explorer UI: On the bottom left is a bunch of different options such as sorting, grouping, etc… which will allow you to customize your view. Banners are used to navigate through the tv shows, with the corresponding available episodes and details showing to the right.

TV Guide:
Filters:
Episode Grouping:
Group Sorting: I prefer to sort by Season Episode
TV Explorer Options: A variety of additional options which will help to maximize your experience.

Categories: HTPC, SageTV, SMW, TV Explorer

Geektonic – Interview with Jeff K. Founder of SageTV

July 7, 2009 Leave a comment

Brent Evans over at Geektonic.com has just posted an excellent interview he did with Jeff Kardatzke, Founder and CTO of SageTV. For anyone who is a current user of SageTV or just interested in finding out what is in store for the future of SageTV, this is a must read.

Part I of the article can be found here.
Part II of the article can be found here.

I currently have a mixed environment at home consisting of both Windows Media Center and SageTV. Some of the things I would like to see improved upon with future versions of SageTV are:

  1. New/refreshed UI. Functionality and stability are top priority, but at the end of the day SageTV still competes with the other Media Center Software out there (free and paid). From a Wow factor I feel SageTV is behind the rest of the pack, although there are some very promising enhancements that are moving SageTV in the right direction, such as SageMovieWall.
  2. Simplify installation process, too easy to mess something up. I am currently very hesitant to recommend SageTV to family/friends unless I want to become their personal tech support (i.e. most of my family/friends are not tech savvy at all). For instance, installing some of the add ins requires too many steps, installing/extracting multiple files, editing Properties files, etc… This is fine for me, but will keep SageTV out of the average household.
  3. HD300 with upgraded hardware (HMDI 1.3a +, internal HDD, possibly BD Rom). Adding an internal HDD makes the HD200 portable for me, which is great when traveling with my family. I can also store my son’s movies locally on the HDD and restrict him from other content. The HD200 expects an external drive, but that just adds another device to carry around, more wires, etc… No ability to downmix HD Audio without a receiver involved kills the HD200 a little for me, as I can see setting up the HD200 in every room in my house (obviously not going to throw a receiver in every room). I will do a post shortly highlighting what I am currently doing to get around this issue with the HD200.
  4. Better integration of online content. One thing I like to do when I only get a few minutes of peace and quiet at home is to watch movie trailers (I have been to the movies once in the past year so movie trailers has to do…). I end up turning to Boxee/XBMC and/or WMC (via Media Browser) to do. Hulu seems to be out of the mix for now, but through the fault of Hulu and not SageTV.
  5. Some sort of plug in repository, similar to what is available with XBMC and Media Browser. I would rather see all available plugins from the SageTV UI and be able to install directly from there then have to dig through the forums to get info. The XBMC SVN repository works great, and the new Media Browser plugin architecture is a move in the right direction as well.

So what do you think, what would you like to see in the future for SageTV?

Categories: HD200, HTPC, SageTV
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