Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Sherwood, Oregon
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I'm trying to figure out the best way to view my home movie collection. I have about 3000 movie files and several hundred TV shows. The TV shows are mostly .mpg and the movies are 90% .ts and the balance are .mpg with a few .flv and .avi files thrown in.
The files are stored on a WHS 2011 server with the backups on a Synology DS1812+. Both systems have 24TB space. For viewing I use a Samsung 6400 series display in the family room and an older Samsung 42" in the bedroom. Both displays have Gen3 WDTV Live media players with the latest firmware.
Now to the issues: The WHS 2011 server can't be used as a Media Server because most of my file formats aren't blessed by Microsoft. So I just use it as a NAS and let the WDTV units read from it. That works fine, up to a point.
I like the WDTV user interface and the way it scrapes movie info from the web. However, about 800 of my movie files names are in the "Name, The" format and the WDTV will only sort them as "The Name". I have edited the .xml files and the WDTV STILL sorts them as "The Name" although after a second or so it changes the name on screen to "Name, The". This makes it VERY difficult to find the movie you want if you're not sure about the leading "The". This is very close to a deal breaker. The other issue with the WDTV units is they keep ALL their ancillary files in the same directory with the movies files. This may be a standard practice left over from the idea of a folder for every full DVD rip but it makes it very difficult to maintain and update the movie files. This in itself is not a deal breaker but it is enough for me to look for other solutions.
Other Solutions: The Synology NAS is a fantastic piece of gear. It's Media Server app works with all my files. It's Video Station app scrapes the web for information on the files, AND stores it away from the actual movie files! It sorts by folder, multiple genre, year, cast member, director, title and several other methods. The WDTV players can read from it as a media server or as a network share. My Samsung 6400 can also directly show movies from the Synology Media Server without using a WDTV. And, best of all, the files are displayed in “The Name” format BUT sorted in “Name, The”! But, alas, not all is well.
I have the Synology set up to serve the Video Station scrapings in their Media Server. However, both the WDTV units and the Samsung 6400 show the movie titles, with the tag lines from Video Station, but no other information. No year, cast, director, or descriptive info. No image info either.
Since I'm not the only person using this system I really don't want to set up a PC at each location running Synology Video Station or other HTC package. Whatever I do with with the Samsung 6400, I still need to use a WDTV in the bedroom. Therefore, I should also use a WDTV in the family room. I guess if a method could be found to get the WDTVs to sort in “Name, The” and display in “The Name” format that would be ideal.
Any thought on these issues? Thanks.