Stop the Madness! Fix your naming issues first.

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Tight_wad Offline
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Post: #1
There seems to be a lot of people having issues with getting their movies and Tv Shows to scrape and show in the Library view. It also seems that most of the time it is a naming issue that is at fault, not XBMC or the scrapers.

Here are two links into the wiki that will help.

Tv Shows (Video Library)
and
Movies (Video Library)

This should be enough to get most people on track, but I will continue with more about how I do it. Is my way the only way to do it, No, it isn't. In fact, its not really my way. Its just one of the ways that the wiki shows how to do it. And I have found that by being willing to name and organize my stuff more to how XBMC wants it, just works, and very well.

Now I am sure some would say "but _____ was able to do it, XBMC should too!" Your right and totally wrong!
If you want XBMC to do it, natively, then you need to make changes to your folder / file names and even folder structure. And before anyone starts to cry about how long it will take to do this, just stop. It doesn't take that long. You can do it manually, or there are programs out there that can aid in doing this.

My movie structure and naming that I have found to work with VIDEO-TS and other file types is:


Movies <main folder for all movies>
-----|
-----|_ Movie name (year)<folder for movie> <name should be as exact as possible baring unusable symbols><date (xxxx)>
------------|
------------|_VIDEO_TS <folder><movie is here><if you ever export library separately it would be here also> or somefilename.ext <file of actual movie><somefilename = just that, you choose whatever, I use the actual movie name the same as one folder up><.ext = iso or whatever>

Note: This is not how my movies were originally named, or the structure that they were in, again I say, I conformed to the way that XBMC would do best.


And the results of doing mine this way and using themoviedb, yielded about a 95% accuracy for about 1800 movies. Of that 5% that didn't work, more than half of those were naming errors caused by my poor typing. The remainder of movies (- 2 movies) that weren't in the database, I changed to IMDB scraper and scraped them. And the 2 remaining movies, I contributed to the database, and was able to scape once they made them available.

Now for the TV Shows, that is a little different. You really need to look at thetvdb.com and make sure that you get the naming right. It's a little harder than doing the movies, but once you know the how to name and structure folders, it works really well.

My TV show structure for .iso and alike is:

TV <folder that all tv shows are located>
-----|
-----|_TV show name <This can be a tough one, it should be the exact (real) name of the show. Example is "House" is the name for the show about Dr. House MD that is easy almost a no brainer. But take a show that is shown on the National Geographic Channel it might need National Geographic in the title or not>
-----------|
-----------|_Season xx <xx = 00 or 01 and so on>< Do you have to have a season folder, no, do you need it, YES><if thetvdb.com used a year instead of a Season xx then use Season xxxx where xxxx = year>
----------------|
----------------|_Tv series name sXXeXX episode name.ext <Tv Series name = Series name, but you can use the exact name as in the Tv show name folder> <sxxexx [COLOR="blue"](I have used xx.xx for this also. If the thetvdb.com shows a year instead of a season, then use xxxx.xx where xxxx = year .xx = episode number)this can be simple or tricky, you should already know the season from previous folder. For episode, if your file contains only one episode then xx will be the actual episode number for that season. If your file.ext has multiple episodes then you can do e01e02e03 and so on><episode name = This I have done with and without, on single episode files, I just use them. Multiply episode files not at all><.ext is your file extension. Most work, but VIDEO_TS don't natively.

If you want to use VIDEO_TS in TV shows, then this will be a folder not your TV show file AND you will have to create/modify the advancedsettings.xml to use VIDEO_TS for TV shows. Not to make this larger than need, I will continue with the what if you do want to use VIDEO_TS and you understand that everything before this is still correct except that this is a folder not a file[/COLOR]
---------------------|
---------------------|_VIDEO_TS <folder><TV show is here>

Now you will have to create/modify (if you already have one) an advancedsettings.xml The wiki for advancedsettings.xml and more info about VIDEO_TS for TV is at the bottom here. At this time, I won't go into details on how to create/modify it, just what you need in it to have the VIDEO_TS recognized and used by the TV library.

Here is What you will need inside of the advancedsettings.xml for VIDEO_TS to work:
Code:
<advancedsettings>
<tvshowmatching append="no">
     <regexp>\[[Ss]([0-9]+)\]_\[[Ee]([0-9]+)\]?([^\\/]*)(?:(?:[\\/]video_ts)[\\/]video_ts.ifo)?</regexp>
     <regexp>[\._ \[\-\\/]([0-9]+)x([0-9]+)([^\\/]*)(?:(?:[\\/]video_ts)[\\/]video_ts.ifo)?</regexp>
     <regexp>[Ss]([0-9]+)[\.\-]?[Ee]([0-9]+)([^\\/]*)(?:(?:[\\/]video_ts)[\\/]video_ts.ifo)?</regexp>
     <regexp>[\._ \-\\/]([0-9]+)([0-9][0-9])([\._ \-][^\\/]*)(?:(?:[\\/]video_ts)[\\/]video_ts.ifo)?</regexp>
   </tvshowmatching>
</advancedsettings>

Done correctly, any VIDEO_TS that is named correctly as described above will be able to recognized by the TV Show library. Using these will be almost exactly the same as any other file type. And you can do individual episodes or multiple episode. The only thing that I have found so far to differ is with using clear art and logo art. But still early to know if this is skin or what related. Not a actual issue, just that Clear art shows only when viewing seasons, not episodes. And logo doesn't work at all. Again not a big deal.

My results doing TV shows this way is pretty much 100%. Only issues I have had not finding a show has been when I mistyped while I was naming. Always something simple like using letter o instead of zero.

So now I have shown how I have been able to get all of my Movie and TV Shows to show in XBMC. Is it perfect, well no it isn't. But its really close. There are things that I would like to scrape in a better way, and I have figured out how to deal with that too, but that will have to wait for another write-up.

--------------------------------------
Note about multiple episodes in one:

I use them for a lot of shows, and they work great but they aren't the same as doing with individual episodes. Say you have done a complete disk of House with 6 episodes on it. When you select an episode to watch, it starts playing just like you put the disk in. Any of the 6 episodes that you pick will react and start in the same place.

And if you use the "watched" tags, all 6 will be tagged as "watch" regardless. If you can't live with it being this way, then you want to stay away from using multiple episodes and do them individually. I will say, and not speaking for XBMC team, I'm just a user, but I don't feel that this is a bug, or anything that should or can be fixed. Individual episodes it the proper way to do it.

---------------------------------------

A little about me, for anyone who says "who are you to tell me..."

I'm just a user of XBMC, not a developer, or anything at this time. I did spent about a month on this forum as a guest, reading and searching the forum and wiki for all that I could. I used a laptop computer during that time to learn and test how to use XBMC and in what way my files would have to be for it to work best. For about the last 4 months, I have been a registered user, and I am on here almost every day, (work is slow for winter). I still consider myself as new to XBMC, and learning as I go. I can't write scripts/python or anything, So I try to post often if I feel I can help.

And that is why I took the time to write this. Hopefully this will be a help to some of you that are having issues with getting your Movies and TV shows in the library.
(This post was last modified: 2011-02-24 23:04 by Tight_wad.)
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waldo22 Offline
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Post: #2
Great post, thanks a bunch.

This will definitely help people like me that buy TV shows on DVD and rip them to VOB/IFO in a Video_TS folder.

This type of help is greatly appreciated.

-Wes
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CASHMON3Y Offline
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Post: #3
Great post. I too am noticing alot of people who are having problems related to improper naming. A friend of mine actually quit using XBMC because he was too lazy to stop dumping his files into a "dropbox" of sorts. Shame really... Using VLC as a mediacenter is not friendly at all!

Server - Debain Squeeze Server + 6TB RAID5 + Sabnzbd + CP & SB
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Tight_wad Offline
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Post: #4
Thanks, I'm glad to see that it might be of help to someone.
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gobbledigook Offline
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Post: #5
hi Smile

great post! lots of very useful and not straightforward to find info.

i sorted naming issues with my collection by using the renamer and a batch file renamer (for adding bits in ie:doctor who 2005 so the renamer works correctly)

and i am now using sickbeard to sort my tvshows... and i am going to install couchpotato this eve.

even just adding the show helps cause it looks it up in tvdb and lets you select which show is correct before downloading all the relevant tvdb info xml thumbs etc... and you can also tell it to rename all the episodes in the series to a pre-defined standard. in my case i use: "s01e01 episode name" but you can define your own.

my only word of warning is that this can take HOURS!!! i spent two days on and off just sorting and renaming stuff... once you have it organised correctly though.. wow!! it all looks amazing Smile
(This post was last modified: 2011-02-28 18:16 by gobbledigook.)
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likelinus Offline
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Post: #6
Why do the movies need to be in individual folders? I'm just curious what the reason behind this is and I've never seen an explanation for it. Sounds like just one more click to make when looking for a movie.

My WHS server is setup with a video folder and then the videos inside a single folder. They are named the "movie name.extension". I only have Children's movies separated into a different folder so the kids can easily find them. This worked great on my WDTV Live Plus and was never an issue.

I installed XBMC on my Core Quad laptop this weekend as a test environment and the library and folder view modes worked perfectly. I didn't have any issues with the scraper, other than a few movies having original thumbs/posters instead of being the remake version (which adding the year or just selecting the movie myself fixed). Maybe it’s because none of my movies are split? Either way, it appears to work and didn't seem to be an issue. Is there something I'm missing on why this is important?
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Mindzai Offline
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Post: #7
likelinus Wrote:Why do the movies need to be in individual folders?

They don't Smile
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likelinus Offline
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Post: #8
Mindzai Wrote:They don't Smile

lol, ok, well I got that and I guess it was a silly question. I meant to say that all of the setup guides and some post I've seen suggested this. Not sure why or if there was a good reason for it other than some people might have movies in multiple segments. Want to make sure I'm doing everything right Big Grin
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Tight_wad Offline
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Post: #9
You don't have to have each in its own file. I'm not saying that it is a "have to" and it sounds like you have already put a good effort into having a well organized system. But a lot of others that have problems scraping haven't taken the time. And then they want XBMC to conform to their sloppiness.

As for why, I do it for 2 reasons. First I use mostly use VIDEO_TS's so they need to be in a movie folder, and for that reason, I do all my others this way. And second, I want to keep things as organized as I possibly can, so that when I do exporting separately, I have that all stored within my movie's folder. That is my reasons for why it's important to use folders.

My number one goal when I first started using XBMC was to have all of my computers using XBMC be totally identical. And doing it this way has accomplished exactly that for me. I can now add a new one, or do a total refresh and have it work 100% of the time, every time.

Not sure about the extra clicks to play. Whether I am in Library view or folder view, I don't have any extra clicks to make. If I was trying to play it directly from my files outside of XBMC, than ya I guess I would have to. But I don't know any reason that I would need or want to do that.
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likelinus Offline
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Post: #10
Good deal, I just wondered why I saw that suggestion so often. You are right, all of my movies are single file, named correctly and I have no other files in the folder. So XBMC didn't have any problems identifying the movies. Makes sense if you are using raw VOB files or if they are broken into multiple files.

You wouldn't have an extra click with the library. I was thinking about the WDTV Live way of doing things, my bad. I haven't actually built my system yet (the parts should be delivered today from Amazon!!), but I played around with it over the weekend and it's an amazing media center.

Now what I need to find is if there is a sports and news add-on! Like Weather has it's own tab/page, have another one for Sports (Scores/News) and News (Headlines)!
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GJones Offline
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Post: #11
A folder for each movie does make a number of things easier:
  • support files can be put in one folder instead of named along with the filename (somemovie.mkv has a movie.nfo instead of somemovie.nfo)
  • additional support files are possible (those that can't be built by filename like extrathumbs, extrafanart, etc. supported by different skins)
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kim1406 Offline
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Post: #12
Thanks for this great post. You will surely help a lot of people here.

thanks again,
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Randall Lind Offline
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Post: #13
It would be nice if XBMC programmers would allow & and , in names. It seems titles with test are not liiked by XBMC and I need to remove the , and rename place & with and.
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compcentral Offline
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Post: #14
likelinus Wrote:Why do the movies need to be in individual folders? I'm just curious what the reason behind this is and I've never seen an explanation for it. Sounds like just one more click to make when looking for a movie.

My WHS server is setup with a video folder and then the videos inside a single folder. They are named the "movie name.extension". I only have Children's movies separated into a different folder so the kids can easily find them. This worked great on my WDTV Live Plus and was never an issue.

I installed XBMC on my Core Quad laptop this weekend as a test environment and the library and folder view modes worked perfectly. I didn't have any issues with the scraper, other than a few movies having original thumbs/posters instead of being the remake version (which adding the year or just selecting the movie myself fixed). Maybe it’s because none of my movies are split? Either way, it appears to work and didn't seem to be an issue. Is there something I'm missing on why this is important?

There are multiple reasons:
  • If you have a movie split across multiple files, this keeps them together.
  • The folder name describes the movie name/year and nothing else for scraping purposes. The movie file inside the folder can contain more info in the name to describe the source and quality of the file (ie. Movie.Name.(2010).1080p.DTS.BluRay.mkv) without effecting scraping.
  • Allows for Video_TS subfolders.
  • Additional files such as .nfo and subtitle files can be grouped together with movie files. NFO files with IMDB links can also make scraping more accurate this way as well.
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compcentral Offline
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Post: #15
likelinus Wrote:what I need to find is if there is a sports and news add-on! Like Weather has it's own tab/page, have another one for Sports (Scores/News) and News (Headlines)!

You can do RSS feeds, but this is an excellent idea. You could also create a custom menu item to point to a smart playlist or a video addon for news/sports for now though.
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