New user - a couple of suggestions

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New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  hotchoc on Thu Jan 01, 2009 6:12 am

I've been using VideoDrive over the last few weeks, and have just purchased it. I've been looking for something like this for ages, I'm quite excited - now my mac media centre is complete.

A couple of small suggestions for further development:

Is it possible for you to script the command line using things like 'curl' instead of scripting Safari's GUI for retrieving of metadata and images? I think this would be a lot quicker and would prevent problems when trying to perform other tasks while Videodrive is working.
Likewise, if it's possible to command-line script Quicktime instead scripting the GUI, I think this would speed Videodrive up considerably.

One other small option that you may not be aware of is that iTunes will accept any file that Quicktime can play and all you have to do is creator code to "MooV" and file type code to "TVOD" (without quotes). This is a very quick way of adding files to iTunes without even creating a reference file or adding the file into another container.

Thanks for the good work!

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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  Aroona on Thu Jan 01, 2009 2:47 pm

Hi, thanks for joining us and your suggestions. Here are some answers for you:
- VideoDrive uses curl to retrieve the metadata and cover art. You can notice this as the metadata is already present in VideoDrive when Safari is opening. Version 1.7.4 will have some improvements here (such as multi-browser support).
- While a very good idea, command-line scripting Quicktime, is not our top priority at the moment. It' s definitely something we will look at in the near future.
- The import method you describe is currently under development for version 1.7.4. While very fast and quite reliable it does have some drawbacks. For instance, iTunes and Front Row might respond slowly to some video formats, and a lot of video formats cannot store cover art. Also, it depends on the video format if the videos will show up in shared libraries. All in all, it does not offer a consistent user experience, therefore, we will offer it as an advanced import option tucked away in the Preferences panel.
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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  hotchoc on Fri Jan 02, 2009 6:24 am

Excellent, thanks for the speedy reply!

I didn't realise Videodrive used curl - the fact that Safari popped up seemed to indicate this was not the case.

Great to see the development of this software is constant.

I have a question about the speed of import for different files. I was importing 16 itunes compatible TV episodes (.m4v format) of about 400mb each (ripped from DVD using Handbrake). I had import compatible files into iTUnes option selected. It seemed to take a very very long time to import these files. Longer than I had experienced before with even more files. Does the format of the files affect import speed, or metadata attachment?

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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  Aroona on Fri Jan 02, 2009 4:59 pm

If you have the option to "copy into the iTunes folder" checked in iTunes preferences, then iTunes will copy the entire file. This might take a while. Make sure this option is synced with the corresponding option in VideoDrive Preferences. Otherwise, the file might even be copied twice. If you uncheck both, importing should be nearly instantaneous (without metadata/cover-art, which might take another 10 seconds depending on your internet connection speed)
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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  hotchoc on Sat Jan 03, 2009 2:46 am

Ah yes, that makes sense. Although I do notice that retrieving metadata and cover art seems to take longer than ten seconds too - even on a fast broadband connection.
I did have iTunes and Videodrive set to copy to the iTunes folder as I like my files to be filed away neatly, but I'd be willing to put them somewhere else to speed up the process....however, is there a way that Videodrive can check a hotfolder, then move the resulting imported videos into another folder (like a "done" folder)?

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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  Aroona on Sat Jan 03, 2009 12:22 pm

If I understand correctly, you suggest to have this scenario:
1) A Hot Folder Inbox (where all your videos arrive)
2) VideoDrive processes your videos, puts them in iTunes WITHOUT copying them in the iTunes folder
3) your videos are copied to a Done Folder

This implies that you use the "reference files" import option? Because, if you use the import options to copy into a container or convert, the original videos are no longer required and VideoDrive can delete your original files.

This option is technically possible, but there are two limitations:
1) This done folder will become one hugh dump for your videos as they will not be saved in subfolders. Maybe VideoDrive should do that too?
2) you can only move videos to Done folder on the same disk. Otherwise, iTunes will not find them anymore.
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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  hotchoc on Sat Jan 03, 2009 1:07 pm

You do understand correctly.
Originally I was choosing the copy to iTunes setting (and letting iTunes copy) as I like having my media files organised out of sight.
However, I changed this after realising that it adds unneccesary time to the process while it copies (sometimes many) files.

No I'm not using the reference files option, I'm using the .mov container option - but the problem remains with the converted .mov file - it still needs to be filed somewhere, and at the moment, that is a manual step. The original files can be deleted as per VideoDrive's current options.

Yeah, maybe VideoDrive should make subfolders as iTunes normally would - that would be pretty good. What would be nice is if there was an option (in iTunes) to "move" to the iTunes folder, instead of "copy" to the iTunes folder!!

You are right though, essentially it is just like and "in folder" and and "out folder".

Thanks again.

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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  Aroona on Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:51 pm

VideoDrive version 1.7.7 (to be released soon) will include a new option to move all video files to a specific folder.
- newly created converted videos and compatible videos will be copied in that folder (unless they are copied into the iTunes folder)
- original video files are also moved in that folder (unless they are copied into the iTunes folder, and unless they are moved to trash)

Also, it's important to keep in mind that moving original video files occurs at the beginning of the import process. This means that if you later on Cancel the import process, the original video files will have been moved.


If you have any comments or suggestions for this option, please let them know. The option to create subfolders automatically will not be included yet in 1.7.7.
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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  hotchoc on Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:34 am

Excellent work! You really are very responsive developers!

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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  mrb0nj on Fri Jan 23, 2009 11:42 pm

A nice extension to the 'Move' function would be if shows could be renamed to the 'Name' set in iTunes and perhaps organise the moved files into 'TV Show/Season/File.avi' eg. 'Chuck/Season 2/Episode 11 - Chuck Versus Santa Claus.avi' ??

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Re: New user - a couple of suggestions

Post  Aroona on Fri Feb 13, 2009 9:36 pm

This feature has been added in version 1.7.9 (beta 1)

The move function does not support subtitles. We will add this in the final version of 1.7.9.
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