Bad experience for a first time user of XBMC

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cosmicr Offline
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Post: #16
Well I went from GBPVR->MediaPortal->Moovida->XBMC

And I have to say that of all those XBMC has been the easiest by far to setup. I can't understand why you had problems, it's very intuitive.

As for WAF, well last night I came home to see my wife actually showing off our setup to her friends. I was very proud Smile My friends all want me to set it up for them, and once again I can't understand why anyone would have any problems.

Your issues seem to be with scraping, perhaps your internet connection is flakey? BTW, Dharma (the beta version of the next XBMC) allows you to 'correct' incorrectly scraped fanart and lets you choose from the gallery found on your scraped site (ie thetvdb or themoviedb)

FWIW, My remote doesnt have a 'C' button (at least not that I've noticed) and I wouldn't know what it does anyway since I've never had to press it!
(This post was last modified: 2010-11-16 06:15 by cosmicr.)
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spoco2 Offline
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Post: #17
WAF is not an issue with these apps as my wife is all for them after using MediaPortal for years.

Maybe you didn't have issues, and maybe if your internet connection is perfect and you suffer no problems at all during the install then it's perfect. But what if there are problems? What if you chose something incorrectly? How do you fix it? Where is the screen prompting on what to do next?

I am using Dharma beta 3(or 4, whatever the latest one is). And I have a media center remote which I'm sure has a button I could use instead of 'C' on my wireless keyboard, but the instructions on the website say press 'C' for a keyboard and for a remote it's variable... which isn't very helpful.

And I ended up in an interface for trying to fix the scraped tv info but I'm not entirely sure how I got there and it didn't fix much once I did.

I'm just saying it could do with some work that's all.
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>>X<< Offline
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Post: #18
If you read the quick start guide first you wouldn't or shouldn't have had a problem there is no reason what so ever to press "C" to setup XBMC or to populate either the Movies library or TV library

First time you select video you see "Add Source" which is self explanatory in the add source window you also have "Set Content" its all in the same window and every option in set content is explained in the quick start guide all this is done from arrows and ok on the remote

How hard is it to go to "Video > Add Source > Set Content" especially when set content is in the add source window

Think you have been stumbling round in the dark because you haven't taken the time to read a dam thing
(This post was last modified: 2010-11-16 14:50 by >>X<<.)
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Targettio Offline
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Post: #19
While I agree with some of the OP’s grievances, I can’t support his post. He states that XBMC isn’t the easiest thing to set up (which I agree) then calms MediaPortal is better BECAUSE of the walk through online. XBMC has online walk throughs for nearly everything and there is a quickstart guide (linked in this thread).

IMO, when you add a source there should be a pop up asking you if you now want to scan this source (and set content if needed).

XBMC doesn’t currently handle home videos very well. It is a weakness that I know some of the devs are looking at (maybe 3 types of video; Movie, TV and Home Vids).
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scokem Offline
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Post: #20
I don't think xbmc does a bad job of explaining things to new users. For instance when you jump into a menu such as Movies before having added any sources it tells you that no sources have been configured and tells you to add them under the Videos menu. Same goes for when it warns about the library view not being ready etc.

There are a couple of things I can suggest to newcomers aside from the already suggested (and best piece of advice you can get) "read the wiki":

1. If you require a guide to show you every step to take then Lifehacker had this pretty good one. Granted it may be a little dated now if you are running the latest builds but the basics should all be there; and

2. See this thread for a useful cheat sheet that you may want to stick to your keyboard or keep nearby.

In my personal experience, I can't stress enough that as good as scrapers may be, there is nothing better than using a media manager (I use Media Companion but there are plenty of others out there) and managing everything yourself. Whilst it may seem a little daunting at first, once you get the hang of it and you know what files are used where, your artwork issues will be a thing of the past and if you ever need to rebuild your library you won't have to wait ages for everything to be rescraped. Don't forget that if you find artwork changes aren't reflecting in xbmc, use the "reload" option on that specific item.
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Hitcher Offline
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Post: #21
The option to add your sources and set everything up should be coded into the installer for first time users.
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bigdog66 Offline
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Post: #22
spoco2 Wrote:And how do you communicate with anyone without being a smug git?

Really, how does a comment like that help anyone?

My post is trying to demonstrate how frustrating xbmc is to set up... coming from someone who has programmed computers since 1983, and still does as a living.

I do know tech, I do know software, and I know a bad interface when I see one.

ONCE you get xbmc setup I can see it can be a great way to access your media, but the initial setup is horrible. It's not intuitive, it gives little to no feedback, and does not gear itself to the primary use people probably want from it.

Comments like yours are how projects like this never get better 'Oh bugger off, I finally worked it out after wringing my hair out and trial and error, and damnit, so can you, I refuse to accept that this could be made any better'

Everyone else is giving FAR more constructive feedback than you sir.


I came from using tversity and my 360 to watch movies so really I had no experience.....Maybe I got lucky in my thinking and spent a little time on the forums before I tried to tackle this
I say lucky because I really didn't have any problems setting this up
Could it be better at hand holding...probably
but to date there hasn't been an issue that I haven't found an answer to before going nuts and saying the interface is bad which is far from the truth
but to also say this isn't a constant work in progress wouldn't be true either
but most of us understand what the end result will be and are more than happy to work through a problem here or there although you seem to have had more than most
So if you wanted to be helpful then you could certainly take some time and write up a few guides to help others and I'm sure people including the devs would greatly appreciate it.....and knowing that without XBMC a lot of other software including media portal probably wouldn't be here then you would be giving to a great cause

BTW....there is only one "motherland" and "git" and "bugger" didn't come from there!
but i know what your saying...lol

WE ALL WE GOT
(This post was last modified: 2010-11-16 16:39 by bigdog66.)
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Robotica Offline
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Post: #23
Hitcher Wrote:The option to add your sources and set everything up should be coded into the installer for first time users.

Yes, a wizard based installer would ease things a lot for first time users. Set up: time, region, sources, settings, etc.
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linuxluemmel Offline
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Post: #24
anyone who can read has advance ;-)

1.) There is a wiki
2.) There is a forum

IMHO I like to setup the HTPC to my own needs compared to settings that don't meet my needings ..
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mobious Offline
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Post: #25
I just got to state this, XBMC might not be an easy thing to setup for a newcomer, but by god it has a great community that helped me through every step of the way and the most informative wiki out there, if those two aren't enough to help you through the process then your better off just double clicking a file and watching it in VLC.
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legio1 Offline
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Post: #26
linuxluemmel Wrote:anyone who can read has advance ;-)

1.) There is a wiki
2.) There is a forum

IMHO I like to setup the HTPC to my own needs compared to settings that don't meet my needings ..

Why not both?

In the Windows world (and most potential new users are coming from Windows), one installs a typical piece of software by downloading a file from a website and then double clicking it. (Or by running directly from the website which amounts to the same thing – file is downloaded to a temporary location then executed.) This launches an installation wizard which usually allows the user to select an install type: “normal” or “custom”. Assuming this user doesn’t know what they’re doing they choose normal and get prompted for the basic information they need to get up and running with their new application. If they do know what they’re doing they pick custom and get to control everything.

So, why can’t the XBMC installer work the same way? For new users who haven’t bothered to read the wiki and the forums in advance, the wizard prompts them for the locations of their media etc. Experienced users could bypass anything they don’t want to “automatically” setup and configure as desired on first launch.

mobious Wrote:I just got to state this, XBMC might not be an easy thing to setup for a newcomer, but by god it has a great community that helped me through every step of the way and the most informative wiki out there, if those two aren't enough to help you through the process then your better off just double clicking a file and watching it in VLC.

Ok, I'll give you that the forum is usually helpful and the wiki does have a good base of information and that together they are enough but why settle for “enough”. If that’s all that matters, then why bother with XBMC at all? Why not just open the file in VLC/WMP/MPC and direct the video to your TV via the graphics controller? The need for a decent setup wizard for new users is as real (or not) as the “need” for fan art, thumbnails and movie sets.
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Avigrace Offline
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Post: #27
The OP is the average first-time user, most of his comments are valid it is just that most of us are used to the way XBMC works and setting it up for the 10th time is a breeze. In order for XBMC to reach a potentially far greater user base his concerns need to be addressed. Mirroring what Hitcher said, the first time you run up xbmc there should be an optional wizard of some sort that takes you through adding your media and scanning them. I bet there are many people who tried xbmc and walked away as it didn't appear to work out of the box.
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natethomas Offline
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Post: #28
At the risk of sounding like I'm blowing people off, code is welcome. XBMC is open source software. Whenever possible, Devs try to keep the XBMC experience constant between platforms, and none of them have ever expressed interest in creating an installation wizard (either during the first run through or during installation) where you set your sources. With that said, every commenter is entirely welcome to submit code to do this very thing. If the devs like it, they'll include it. If not, you can always branch the code. That's the beauty of OSS.

Always read the XBMC online-manual, FAQ and search the forum before posting.
Do not e-mail XBMC-Team members directly asking for support. Read/follow the forum rules.
For troubleshooting and bug reporting please make sure you read this first.

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MrCrispy Offline
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Post: #29
XBMC installer could at the end should at least prompt to take you to the wiki, or one of the many first time user guides such as Lifehacker's.

Sort of like 'Welcome to XBMC. We hope you read this guide to make full use of all the wonderful possibilities.' Smile
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dormamu Offline
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Post: #30
Another thing, first time users usually stay away from beta's and go straight for the stable version.
As far as scraping goes, the stable version is pain in the !%^# at the moment (for example IMDB and TVDB issues). So I can understand that first time users get frustrated with setting up XBMC
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