Is there a front-end that can do what I need? WMC can't do it. - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 59 Old 09-22-2013, 06:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

These frontends would work the way you want if your wife would simply hit stop at the end of the show instead of Skip/Next. Hitting stop will put her at the screen to simply select the next episode, before seeing previews of the next episode.

Hi Bryansj,

Using the remote control codes you gave me in another forum, I think I've found a way to do everything that I've described using the Sanoxy remote control. I've stopped playing with software for now until I finish my HTPC build. After I complete my build, I'll see if things all work as they seem to work with my tests so far.

Thanks,
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post #32 of 59 Old 09-24-2013, 07:13 PM - Thread Starter
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To clarify, the following is using my Win8 laptop, not my new HTPC build.

After installing Media Browser in my Win8 Laptop, Windows Media Center won't play my 45 minute avi files correctly anymore. (The avi files are on the system SSD that's internal to the laptop.)

At the start of playback, the following happens:

- Audio plays normally but the video freezes for a few seconds,
- Then the video fast forwards for a second, then freezes for maybe 5 seconds.
- Then the video fast forwards for a second, then freezes for maybe 10 seconds.
- This goes on for about 2 minutes of playback with each freeze getting longer and longer.
- At about 2 minutes, the video freezes and remains frozen. All the while the audio is playing back normally.

If I click on the playback progress bar about 5 or more minutes into the video, the video and audio start to playback normally but the audio is delayed by about a second so lip sync is off. ..... Also, srt subtitles will not display anymore. I'm pretty sure the srt subtitles used to display in WMC before.

I de-installed Media Browser but the symptoms remain the same. All the while, VLC plays the same avi files perfectly with the srt subtitles displayed so I know the avi and srt files are OK.

WMC used to play the avi files normally until I installed Media Browser. Does MB install its own codecs that could be affecting avi file playback?

What can I do to get WMC to play the avi files normally again?
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post #33 of 59 Old 09-25-2013, 06:09 AM
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Just follow Assassin's guides. Your codecs are not installed or installed incorrectly. VLC uses its own codecs, but WMC/MB uses the Windows installed codecs. Try playing the files with the Windows Media Player x64 and it should represent the same playback as within WMC. Media Browser has nothing to do with playback, it is just a launchpad. MB3 will be a different story.

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post #34 of 59 Old 09-25-2013, 08:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Just follow Assassin's guides. Your codecs are not installed or installed incorrectly. VLC uses its own codecs, but WMC/MB uses the Windows installed codecs. Try playing the files with the Windows Media Player x64 and it should represent the same playback as within WMC. Media Browser has nothing to do with playback, it is just a launchpad. MB3 will be a different story.

When I play the same avi file using Media Player x64 or x32, the video plays smoothly from the start. In both cases, sound is delayed so lip sync is off. WMC on the other hand, has the video freezing problem that I described. WMC did not have the video freezing problem prior to installing Media Browser. May not have been caused by installing MB but by something I did. Is a coincidence though.

I played the avi file on my new Win8 HTPC build using Windows Media Player. It has the same audio delay problem as my Win8 laptop. VLC plays the avi file perfectly on my new HTPC. WMP on the new HTPC does not display the srt subtitles either and I can't figure out how to enable that.

EDIT: I should note that for testing purposes, playback on the laptop is using the laptop's screen and green audio out jack to headphones. Playback on the new HTPC is using DVI to a computer monitor and green audio out jack to headphones.

Will give reinstalling the codecs per the Assassin guides a shot. Will post results.

Thanks,
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post #35 of 59 Old 09-25-2013, 10:21 AM
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XBMC
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post #36 of 59 Old 09-25-2013, 01:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dark_Slayer View Post

XBMC

smile.gifsmile.gif I hear you. smile.gifsmile.gif Will be giving XBMC a try next.

Thanks,
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post #37 of 59 Old 09-25-2013, 01:35 PM
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RE-CLOCK IS THE SOLUTION FOR OUT OF SYNC AUDIO AND VIDEO

Not XBMC.

You need to update your codecs (shark 007) if you want to remain with WMC also.

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"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
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post #38 of 59 Old 09-25-2013, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by mrfattbill View Post

Couldn't she just hit stop then select the next one in the directory?

Bill

This is how I trained my wife wink.gif

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post #39 of 59 Old 09-25-2013, 05:18 PM
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maybe edit the files and cut off the end that has previews
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post #40 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 12:09 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

RE-CLOCK IS THE SOLUTION FOR OUT OF SYNC AUDIO AND VIDEO

Not XBMC.

You need to update your codecs (shark 007) if you want to remain with WMC also.

>> Don't listen to Mfusick... He's lying! <<

Mfusick, you're NOT lying! I installed RE-CLOCK in my laptop and now the audio sync in WMPlayer is right on! I only played the avi file for about 7 minutes but the audio sync did not drift within that time so I believe it will hold sync for the entire file. Audio sync was getting worse the longer I played the avi file with WMP before installing RE-CLOCK.

Also, the srt subtitles started displaying! There is a problem though. The subtitles are continuously flashing on and off at almost a regular rate but at somewhat irregular rate. Do you know how to enable subtitle playback in WMP?

WMCenter still has the freezing video problem I previously described so RE-CLOCK did not fix that. I didn't expect it to fix the video freezing problem but am mentioning it for clarification for the folks following this thread. I don't know if I screwed up and caused the video freezing problem but coincidentally it started happening after I installed Media Browser.

It's amazing to me how WMP needs RE-CLOCK to sync the audio to the video, when millions of people have been using WMP forever, and VLC syncs the audio perfectly without RE-CLOCK. WMP's audio sync problem also happens on my fresh install of Win8 on my new HTPC build so I know I did not cause the problem on my Win8 laptop which I'm using to test the avi file playback. ..... I don't know if WMP's audio sync problem is because I'm playing a Korean Drama avi file instead of a USA avi file. But I believe Korea uses the same NTSC video as the USA and not the PAL video so I don't know why the Korean Drama avi file should have audio sync problems using WMP without RE-CLOCK.

Thanks much for the RE-CLOCK tip!!!
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post #41 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 02:10 AM
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VLC has the same audio sync issues too so there is nothing amazing about that. I often encounter audio video sync issues with VLC when I fast forward, after doing so the sync is messed up. In VLC if you switch from digital direct to 5.1 and then back it sometimes corrects.

Which players have sync issues is mainly dependent in your video files. Some work and some don't.

Using something like Re-Clock is the best option to ensure your audio and video sync. Re-clock aligns the audio to the video clock do you should never experience audio and video being out if sync. I use it with MPC-HC as my player ... There is a sticky guide up top for set up help. (I have mine set up with MadVr)

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post #42 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 02:14 AM
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As far as subtitles go- you need to minimize or shrink your playback window in WMC or WMP and click on the green arrow looking icon in you programs task bar (bottom right screen near clock in windows 7) and open up the subtitle control.

Subtitle tracks are controlled there in VOD, as well as changing audio tracks. Assassin has a set up guide for changing subtitles and audio tracks in WMC (or mediabrowser2) if you get stuck.

Lastly, I'd recommend also checking and installing SHARK007 codecs (both 32 but and 64bit). First remove completely whatever else you have done and restart. Follow the guide on the set up page ..

That should get you up to date on codecs, allow HD audio bit streaming , and ensure smooth playback.

If you wanted really smooth you could try SVP (smooth video project) but that's a different thing than just stuttering.

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post #43 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 05:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

VLC has the same audio sync issues too so there is nothing amazing about that. I often encounter audio video sync issues with VLC when I fast forward, after doing so the sync is messed up. In VLC if you switch from digital direct to 5.1 and then back it sometimes corrects.

Which players have sync issues is mainly dependent in your video files. Some work and some don't.

Using something like Re-Clock is the best option to ensure your audio and video sync. Re-clock aligns the audio to the video clock do you should never experience audio and video being out if sync. I use it with MPC-HC as my player ... There is a sticky guide up top for set up help. (I have mine set up with MadVr)

I haven't experienced audio sync issues using VLC up to now, but then I haven't been fast forwarding either except for some experiments. I have been playing with the short, medium and long jump options and audio stays in sync using those.

After installing Re-Clock, I agree that it is the best option to insure audio sync. I'll investigate the MPC-HC player.

Thanks for the help,
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post #44 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 05:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

As far as subtitles go- you need to minimize or shrink your playback window in WMC or WMP and click on the green arrow looking icon in you programs task bar (bottom right screen near clock in windows 7) and open up the subtitle control.

Subtitle tracks are controlled there in VOD, as well as changing audio tracks. Assassin has a set up guide for changing subtitles and audio tracks in WMC (or mediabrowser2) if you get stuck.

Lastly, I'd recommend also checking and installing SHARK007 codecs (both 32 but and 64bit). First remove completely whatever else you have done and restart. Follow the guide on the set up page ..

That should get you up to date on codecs, allow HD audio bit streaming , and ensure smooth playback.

If you wanted really smooth you could try SVP (smooth video project) but that's a different thing than just stuttering.

Wow, who would have guessed that a green arrow in the notifications area would control WMP. Unfortunately, I tried different settings but none corrected the flashing subtitles problem. I was able to stop srt subtitle display by checking the "Hide subtitles" box but un-checking just returned to the flashing subtitles again. I'll check out Assassin's guide for changing subtitles. And thanks for the SHARK007 codec recommendation. I'll give that a try.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge,
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post #45 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 05:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by JL-F1 View Post

maybe edit the files and cut off the end that has previews

Too much work!.. wink.gif

I got VLC to jump forward/backward via user selectable seconds (using 30 seconds), and to skip to the next chapter using the Sanoxy Remote Control. No need to go down the video editing path.

Best regards,
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post #46 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 11:13 AM
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You should use WMC/WMP with 4 additional downloads to accomplish what one download of XBMC will give you cool.gif

Hope it gains acceptance either way. Keep tinkering

I tinker the crap out of my setup, but fortunately I can "test" most everything on my laptop before wreaking havoc on the living room
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post #47 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 11:24 AM
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There was no mention of using the WMC TV functions but I'm going to throw it out there. It is the only solution for CableCARD on a PC and is the best solution currently for PVR, IMHO.

After that, you can use MB with MPC-HC and all the right filters or XBMC or Plex. I don't like XBMC and Plex transcodes for the most part so I use the former.

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post #48 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 02:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

There was no mention of using the WMC TV functions but I'm going to throw it out there.
If there was no mention of it why do you bother throwing it out there? While I agree in regards to live tv, that is the one, single, only, solitary, lone, sole reason to use WMC. In my signature, I put together what I consider a slick guide for launching WMCs TV shortcuts from XBMC and returning to XBMC with the back button (never entering WMCs top level menu) and keeping both fullscreen the entire time
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post #49 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 07:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dark_Slayer View Post

XBMC

Dark_Slayer,

I installed XBMC and it works great playing the avi files from the system SSD inside of my Win8 laptop.

1. First of all, I just selected the folder that contains the avi files and did not have to make a playlist. That was easy.
2. Playback is perfect with smooth video and correct audio sync.
3. Subtitles display correctly. No flickering and the subtitles sync with the scenes properly.
4. The fast forward (>>) and reverse (<<) buttons on the Sanoxy remote execute the fast fwd/rev properly.
... I could not get this to work using WMP or WMC.
5. Pressing the PLAY button on the remote stops the fast fwd/rev! This is BIG! I could not find a way to do that
... using VLC so I had to use the jump x seconds instead of fast fwd/rev.
6. Pressing the (>>|) button on the remote returns to the avi playlist. Since the current video takes up one line and
... is boxed, it's easy to see where playback is at and then just press the DOWN button to go to the next video.
... This scenario was not as easy to do using WMC. .... Since this works well in XBMC, I don't need to have the
... (>>|) button jump directly to the next avi file.
7. Of course the normal PLAY and PAUSE buttons work as expected.

I'm very satisfied with how XBMC works and like you said, I just downloaded one program to get all of it.

There is one big obstacle though. I have not been able to setup playback via the network to the hard drive on my tower PC in the living room. Googling, it appears that Homegroup needs to be turned off. If I do that, what's the procedure for transferring non-HTPC files back and forth between the HTPC in the bedroom and my tower PC in the living rm?

Thanks,
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post #50 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 08:24 PM
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Xbmc is a much better player than wmc as you are discovering.

Look at my guides on how to setup and use xbmc.
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post #51 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Skylark View Post

First of all, I just selected the folder that contains the avi files and did not have to make a playlist. That was easy.
If you just push the remote's play button on that folder rather than select your (>>|) button will skip to the next file. (Kind of back to your original request). Admittedly it's a feature I don't really use, but after you asked the question I gave it a try and confirmed it works.
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Originally Posted by Skylark View Post

There is one big obstacle though. I have not been able to setup playback via the network to the hard drive on my tower PC in the living room. Googling, it appears that Homegroup needs to be turned off. If I do that, what's the procedure for transferring non-HTPC files back and forth between the HTPC in the bedroom and my tower PC in the living rm

Hope that's not a sticking point, but a lot of users here don't use homegroup sharing either (myself included). There's a workaround where you add a homegroup user named xbmc, but I've never tried that

I just use open sharing on my lan. If you don't forward ports on your router and a have a decent strength router password then your protection should be good enough

You shouldn't have any trouble using this http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=SMB/Windows
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post #52 of 59 Old 09-26-2013, 08:48 PM
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Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Xbmc is a much better player than wmc as you are discovering.

Look at my guides on how to setup and use xbmc.

Hey Assassin. Did you see the guide in my forum signature for launching WMC shortcuts from XBMC? I still use WMC for Cable TV guide/recordings/liveTV, and a few clever users in a different forum put together an app that launches specific WMC shortcuts (the command line switches we all know) but returns to the previous running app when "back" is pressed rather than going into WMCs top level menu
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post #53 of 59 Old 09-27-2013, 02:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Xbmc is a much better player than wmc as you are discovering.

Look at my guides on how to setup and use xbmc.

Thanks for letting me know about your xbmc guide.

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post #54 of 59 Old 09-27-2013, 03:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Skylark said:
First of all, I just selected the folder that contains the avi files and did not have to make a playlist. That was easy.

Dark_Slayer said:
If you just push the remote's play button on that folder rather than select your (>>|) button will skip to the next file. (Kind of back to your original request). Admittedly it's a feature I don't really use, but after you asked the question I gave it a try and confirmed it works.

You're amazing. It works!
To clarify for lurkers, in XBMC navigate to the folder name. Press the PLAY button on the remote. Playback begins with the first avi episode in the folder. Now when the (>>|) button on the remote is pressed, XBMC jumps to the beginning of the next episode without having to navigate the playlist. This behavior continues for the subsequent episodes.

One gotcha though. This technique only works the first time the dramas are viewed since pressing PLAY on the folder name will always start at the first episode in the folder. Since there can be 21 or more episodes, playback could be stopped at say, episode 5. The next day, it's necessary to navigate to episode 5 and start playback there. At the end of episode 5 when (>>|) is pressed, XBMC returns to the playlist. So then it's necessary to navigate down to the next episode and resume playback. But it's easy to do this using XBMC so my wife will be able to do it.
.
.
Quote:
Skylark said:
There is one big obstacle though. I have not been able to setup playback via the network to the hard drive on my tower PC in the living room. Googling, it appears that Homegroup needs to be turned off. If I do that, what's the procedure for transferring non-HTPC files back and forth between the HTPC in the bedroom and my tower PC in the living rm.

Dark_Slayer said:
Hope that's not a sticking point, but a lot of users here don't use homegroup sharing either (myself included). There's a workaround where you add a homegroup user named xbmc, but I've never tried that

I just use open sharing on my lan. If you don't forward ports on your router and a have a decent strength router password then your protection should be good enough

You shouldn't have any trouble using this http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=SMB/Windows

EDIT: Ignore the balance of this post. Running XBMC as administrator is not the fix. It was just a fluke that it worked.

Dark_Slayer,

I found the XBMC + Homegroup fix!!!

At first, with Homegroup running, I was not able to access videos on the external hard drive attached to my tower PC in the living room via the network using XBMC. Following several posts about XBMC networking that I found by Googling, I left the Homegroup. I struggled for hours trying to get XBMC to access the videos without the Homegroup. No joy!

Then with continued Googling I found a post where the OP said he was able to get his XBMC working with the Homegroup but then it stopped working. The fix was to start XBMC as administrator. So I rejoined the Homegroup and started XBMC as administrator. Then I was able to use "Windows network (SMB)" in XBMC to access my network shares. This method is soooooo easy!!! It just works.

So XBMC can work with the Windows Homegroup by just running it as administrator. (Credit for the administrator fix goes to EthanMcdonald in the xbmc.org forum) Hope this info helps others.

Things are really looking up smile.gif.

Thanks,
Skylark
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post #55 of 59 Old 09-27-2013, 10:33 AM - Thread Starter
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So XBMC can work with the Windows Homegroup by just running it as administrator. (Credit for the administrator fix goes to EthanMcdonald in the xbmc.org forum) Hope this info helps others.

Found the way to make a XBMC desktop shortcut that automatically runs as administrator without the User Account Control popup. Named the shortcut "XBMC ADMIN". Here's a link to the procedure:

http://old.techoddity.com/howto/windows/run-an-elevated-program-without-uac-prompt

EDIT: Although this procedure to make a desktop shortcut that runs as administrator is valid, discovered that XBMC won't work reliably with Homegroup regardless of how it's run.

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post #56 of 59 Old 09-29-2013, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, XBMC will not work "reliably" with Windows' Homegroup. Running XBMC as administrator is not the fix. It must have just been a fluke when I happened to try it. Powered the PC off for the night and the next day, was not able to access the network shares using XBMC.

If I exit XBMC and play a video using Homegroup and VLC, then "sometimes" something kicks in and XBMC will work with Homegroup. Once it works, it seems to work OK as long as I keep XBMC open. If I close XBMC, then it's a toss up whether it will work with Homegroup again, and especially not if I do a restart.

Too bad since XBMC will do everything I wanted to do when it does work.
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post #57 of 59 Old 09-29-2013, 07:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skylark View Post

You're amazing. It works!
To clarify for lurkers, in XBMC navigate to the folder name. Press the PLAY button on the remote. Playback begins with the first avi episode in the folder. Now when the (>>|) button on the remote is pressed, XBMC jumps to the beginning of the next episode without having to navigate the playlist. This behavior continues for the subsequent episodes.

One gotcha though. This technique only works the first time the dramas are viewed since pressing PLAY on the folder name will always start at the first episode in the folder. Since there can be 21 or more episodes, playback could be stopped at say, episode 5. The next day, it's necessary to navigate to episode 5 and start playback there. At the end of episode 5 when (>>|) is pressed, XBMC returns to the playlist. So then it's necessary to navigate down to the next episode and resume playback. But it's easy to do this using XBMC so my wife will be able to do it.

Found the way to make XBMC always jump to the next avi file in the folder by pressing the (>>|) key on the remote control, even if the first video is navigated to.

In XBMC go to SYSTEM > SETTINGS > VIDEO > PLAYBACK and check "Play the next video automatically".

Example:
Navigate to episode-5. At the end of episode-5, episode-6 will play automatically. If (>>|) is pressed before the end of episode-5, XBMC will jump to the beginning of episode-6.

Skylark
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post #58 of 59 Old 10-01-2013, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Skylark View Post

In XBMC go to SYSTEM > SETTINGS > VIDEO > PLAYBACK and check "Play the next video automatically"

Nice find

There is another way to keep from "navigating back to where you left off" which involves hiding all watched videos. That way has a pretty obvious negative consequence when your wife wants to watch something "again" (my wife watches some episodes of shows 3-5 times, so I can't hide watched)

Depending on your skin setup, it should always indicate what has been "watched' and what you've recently added as "New"

I think your setting above is probably the best way to achieve what you were looking for
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post #59 of 59 Old 10-02-2013, 01:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dark_Slayer View Post

There is another way to keep from "navigating back to where you left off" which involves hiding all watched videos. That way has a pretty obvious negative consequence when your wife wants to watch something "again" (my wife watches some episodes of shows 3-5 times, so I can't hide watched)
My wife never wants to watch episodes again so hiding watched videos will work for her very well. Thanks for letting me know about that feature. I'll check it out.
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I think your setting above is probably the best way to achieve what you were looking for
Yes, XBMC + the Sanoxy remote control does everything exactly how I wanted to set it up for my wife's use. Plus it's free smile.gif
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