Media Library Conversion
I have been using Media Browser for quite some time, and have made the decision to start using XBMC for various reasons. Since I am new to XBMC I was wondering if I could get some advice on the best way to set up your media library. I will be using XBMC primarily to play movies, and that is about it.

I used to use Media Center Master, and it would download the images that would cycle in the background. This is similar to 'fanart', but it would cycle all the images. Also it would download the cover art, and create a movies.xml for each movie. This is information from IMDB. From the playing around that I've done with XBMC, I'm guessing that it doesn't work the same way.

Is there a way to force it to use the data that I already have, or does it have to use the XBMC database? I've already found a few movies that were labeled wrong in the small group I used to test things out. I want to make sure that I do things the right way before I get things to messed up. Right now I have about 950 movies, and I really don't want to have to go back through all of them in hopes that the scraper labeled them correctly or in the format that I have been using.

I have been looking around, but I've only seen editors for the existing database. I just wanted to get some advice on what the best way to move forward would be.
Just scan them in - XBMC will get it right for the vast majority.
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Just to add a few words (posting freaks do that) a folder called 'extrafanart' in the movie folder can be loaded with images for a slideshow.... This folder can be automagically made and populated with an add-on called 'Artwork Downloader' (skin dependant and integarted in T! it also get's the cover, disk image, logo, clearart, fanart. XBMC does a good job at the getting the .nfo information screen stuff. The result is ~same might be a tad better, but how it does it.. is slight different. Failing that 3rd party scarpers abound and many prefer those (Ember is an example).

XBMC doesn't use .XML extension, some 3rd party software have conversions... but as noted by JM just scan it.. it shouldn't take too long. Trusting you have your movies in their own folder and using the year in brackets (2010) helps a lot. Not too many movies have the same name and same year. Before you start (I'm probably too late..) using theRenamer will ensure you have the same nomenclature as the scraping database and cleans it all up with the year in brackets...
I have only tried with about 40 movies so far, to test things out before I do any damage to the movies I have. I do have 'Artwork Downloader' and ran that this afternoon. It does do the slideshow similar to the way things did with the old software. I don't know why I like it so much, but I do.

The only reason I was asking about whether or not it could us the .xml files that I already have is because I was having issues with the 40 test movies that I have. One movie doesn't get detected by the library for some reason, and there were two others that were named wrong or have the wrong cover art. I don't think it is a discrepancy with the years, since there is only one 'Harry Potter and . . ' (forgot which ones they were).

I did get some web interface to try and change the titles that were wrong, and put in the IMDB number but it was still getting it wrong. I know there is a learning curve, and I just need to play with it more to get things worked out.
You can also put in the IMDB number in XBMC on a manual scrape, clears up those troublesome movies that are not detected. Just put Harry Potter up manually and XBMC will offer you choices... I've seen some weird issues caused by a comma in the wrong place, or slight variations of symbols, often I've missed the real year... and nothing turns up.

Glad you like Artwork Downloader.
I'm in the process of converting a lot of movies to a single ISO format. While I'm doing that I have taken your advice and started to rename the folder after it is converted to add the year it was made. Hopefully this will help once I add them to my XBMC library.

How do you do a manual scrape? I have it set up to scan on startup, and I have made changes to a few of them by selecting 'i' on the keyboard and refreshing. . . is there another way?
Why are you choosing ISO format... ? might be easier to use handbarke and convert directly to MKV or MP4.

Selecting "i" is the manual format of refreshing the scrape, it gives you the option to use local metadata or exit to the internet db, at which point XBMC offers you a selection of titles (or should, erase the .nfo if it doesn't) and in the bottom right of that requester is the word 'manual', it's here you can enter whatever corrections or the IMDB TT number.
I'm in the processes of building a new home. I have been looking at whole home automation/audio, and I've decided to set up a Control4 system. There is a component called a media player, that will be able to stream the movies from my NAS to my television without the need of a computer anymore. I have talked to the installer, and he told me that ISO, and the normal DVD format will work with the Media Player. So in preparation for that down the road, I have chose to move forward with ISO.

I have been messing with it a little more lately. I have used both of the options you pointed out, but I thought there was a way to make it sort of drop all the information and perform a 'rescan'. The reason I ask is that I have one movie that XBMC will not recognize. It is in the same folder as the rest of the movies, and if I open the folder in a file browser and select the video it plays just fine. I have tried it on both the XBMC installation I have at home as well as my 'test' box at work. I thought forcing a scan would possibly recognize it.
XBMC plays just about everything one can throw at it... it would be interesting to see what a mediainfo listing looks like. A refresh to the internet is the same as a rescan.
I'm not sure what mean by a mediainfo listing. I hope I'm not wasting my time by doing this conversion. Last I checked I was on about 550 of the 950 in the movie conversion process. I haven't had many issues with the configuration now that I'm learning how things operate.

I can't get one movie to be recognized, and I have to go back 'Confluency', instead of 'Transparency' to add videos. Not sure why it locks up while using 'Transparency'. That is something I can live with though.
Ditto about wasting time in this thread..MediaInfo is a convenient unified display of the most relevant technical and tag data for video and audio files. The message I got from you was that a few videos had issues, and I was suggesting that the data might be corrupt.

I'm not familiar with Control4 systems, but from the quick look at their web page it looks like their streamer is nothing but a tarted up PC in disguise with some proprietary software, but if you're happy with this 'all in' solution, whatever floats your boat.

Confluence is the default skin, and when having issues, the native skin will have the best support. Although I've been using Transparency! without issues for a long time and it's never given me a hiccup OTH most of my files are MKV & MP4
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