My Movies Wiki

Providing Meta-Data for "DVD library" or "My DVD's"

Modified: 2009/03/10 20:30 by admin - Uncategorized


While My Movies is a third party add-on application for Media Center, with it’s own interface and it’s own feature set, Media Center has a similar but more limited alternative, in Media Center 2005 called “My DVD’s” and in Vista Media Center called “DVD library” - from now referred to as “DVD library”. This Media Center functionality was created as a movie interface to control DVD Media Changers, but is also able to index and play locally stored DVD’s in VIDEO_TS folder format.

The main limitation in the “DVD library” when using it to index and playback VIDEO_TS folder structures is that it does not automatically locate and display meta-data for the titles in the library, but instead display a movie folders “folder.jpg” file as movie cover, or relies on looking up metadata based on a “dvdid.xml” file stored in the movie folder, which must contain a correct unique id of each title, causing the “DVD library” to lookup meta-data from Microsoft and All Movie Guide. Because of the way this works, getting the “DVD library” to locate meta-data for locally stored DVD’s is a time consuming manual process, and data is limited to US English titles only.

My Movies can serve as an alternative data provider for the “DVD library” for the users who prefers using this more limited interface instead of the My Movies interface, or prefers using both in different situations. This will give you the option to use the powerful features of My Movies such as folder monitoring, and hereby automatic meta-data identification, using the Collection Management program to manually edit or improve DVD meta-data, or to improve and contribute meta-data to the My Movies Web Service to help improve the available meta-data.


Enabling “DVD library”

The “DVD library”, still referred for both “My DVD’s” and “DVD library” is not enabled in Media Center by default – it will only automatically be enabled when attaching a DVD Media Changer while your Media Center is configured for United States as regional location.

To manually enable the “DVD library” you must edit your Windows registry; if you are not familiar with editing registry, it is recommended to get help from a more experienced user for this process, as incorrect editing in registry can cause Windows to no longer function.

Perform the following steps to enable “DVD library” from registry:
  1. Close Media Center
  2. From start menu, “Run...” type “regedit” and press “Ok”.
  3. Locale the key “HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Media Center\Settings\DvdSettings”
  4. Modify the string “ShowGallery”, to the value “Gallery” instead of the default “Play”
  5. Reopen Media Center

Notice that the “DVD library” must be enabled for each user individually, and does not work from Media Center extenders.


Storing meta-data

My Movies stores meta-data for the “DVD library” in the following three situations:

  • When manually adding titles, from the Collection Management program.
  • When editing titles, either from the Collection Management program, or by using the “Change Data” feature from within My Movies in Media Center.
  • When My Movies folder monitoring locates a folder containing a VIDEO_TS folder within its monitored area.

This process means that all collections created on version 2.31 or above will automatically get meta-data for the “DVD library” when adding titles from My Movies, or when My Movies folder monitoring adds title, while collections created on version 2.30 or below only gets meta-data for the “DVD library” when either manually editing a title from the Collection Management program, or when folder monitoring is configured to monitor certain folders areas.

It is a requirement that no “dvdid.xml” files is stored in the movie folders that is not related to My Movies – this means that if you manually have “dvdid.xml” files stored in your movie folders, and whish for My Movies to store meta-data for these titles, your original “dvdid.xml” files must be removed for My Movies to create it’s own.

My Movies stores actual meta-data for the “DVD library”, meaning that it is not just a pointer to meta-data downloaded from Microsoft and All Movie Guide, but actual meta-data from the My Movies Web Service.

Notice that if you have Media Center open, it is important to close and re-open Media Center for the meta-data to occur in the “DVD library”.

The data displayed by the “DVD library” is:
  • Title
  • Front cover
  • Description (Synopsis)*
  • Studio **
  • Release Year
  • Running Time / Duration
  • Genre(s)
  • Director
  • Actors, Top 6
  • Parental Rating

*Description (Synopsis) is not displayed by My DVD’s under Media Center 2005. ** Currently, My Movies does not provide a studio in its meta-data.


Folder monitoring and “DVD library”

As mentioned above, My Movies folder monitoring can be used to automatically create meta-data for the “DVD library” with no or limited manual involvement from yourself.

It is recommend reading and understanding the folder monitoring documentation found on the My Movies Website to fully be aware of how folder monitoring works before you enable it, and to know which operating mode you prefer it to be enabled with.

When using folder monitoring along with the “DVD library” it is recommended to enable the “Media Center Folders” option (default) to ensure that the folders added to the “DVD library” is also monitored by My Movies folder monitoring, ensuring that you get meta-data for all folders located in the “DVD library”.

Depending on which operating mode My Movies folder monitoring is configured to, meta-data may not be added for some titles in strict or confirmative operating modes, or incorrect data could be added loose operating mode. In both of these situations, the “Change Data” feature of My Movies within Media Center or in the Collection Management program can be used to correct the situation for the titles in question. Please refer to the folder monitoring documentation for this.


Further instructions and support

If you require any further instructions, have questions or in other ways require additional support, please use the forum on the My Movies website to receive free support. My Movies registered installers and System Builders may write an e-mail or post in the System Builder priority support section of the forum to receive high priority support.