Is It Possible To Modify Skins Reversibly?

Discussion in 'MediaPortal 1 Skins' started by CyberSimian, October 26, 2015.

  1. CyberSimian
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    When I was using MP 1.9.0 pre, I used the "Amped" skin, to which I made several (very) minor modifications. When I installed MP 1.12, I changed to "DefaultWide", to which I would also like to make some minor modifications. But I would like to do this in a way that:

    (1) Makes it easy to run MP without my modifications (for when my mods do not work correctly).
    (2) Will be preserved when a new release of MP or skin is installed.

    Is there any facility in MP to support this? I looked in the Wiki, but did not find anything.

    The sort of facility that I was thinking about was something akin to the "path" definition in Windows. For MP, let us call this the "xml path". So, there would be a default xml path that MP and its skins would use to find xml files when needed. The user could (either via a config panel, or by editing an xml file) specify one or more folders to be searched ahead of the MP and skin folders when looking for xml files. There would be an invocation option to ignore this user xml path, and running "MP Watchdog" would force the user xml path to be ignored. Is there anything like this already available in MP?

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK


     
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  3. wizard123
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    Would be far easier to just create your mods as a theme for default wide and just backup the theme folder when you update.
     
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  4. CyberSimian
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    Looking at the "Amped" skin, each theme seems to be simply a folder within the "Themes" folder, so I created a folder called "Simian" in the "Themes" folder for "DefaultWide", started MP, and then selected that theme. So far so good. :)

    Also from looking at "Amped" and "DefaultWide", it looks as though each theme folder contains within it the same folder tree as the "Skins" folder, but with files in the theme folder tree overriding the corresponding files in the "Skins" folder tree. This is where things start to go wrong. :(

    Two of the files that I want to modify are "strings_en.xml" and "strings_en-GB.xml" residing in the "Language" folder, but this folder resides outside the "Skins" folder. Consequently, there is no folder within the theme folder where these files can be placed. Nevertheless, I made a test modification to "strings_en.xml", placed the modified file in my "Simian" folder, and restarted MP. However, as expected, MP did not pick up my modification. :(

    If there had been some other way within MP of achieving what I want, I imagine that you would have mentioned it, so I guess that currently there is no support for this. :cry:

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     
  5. catavolt
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    You need the skintranslations.dll, and then you can do translations especially for your skin.
    Download and install DefaultWide HD, and you´ll see what I mean ;)
     
  6. wizard123
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    Or just modify the language xml and simply back it up if you update mediaportal ? I modify the english strings xml with my skin without issue. Cats idea for the dll is another option but i dont think its been updated for a very long time ? Its always better to minimize reliance on 3rd party plugins.
     
  7. CyberSimian
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    The solution using skins and themes looks as though it ought to be the way to provide this capability, but the support seems to be incomplete. The skin/theme files should be able to override anything in the "Language" folder, and indeed any other defaults set by MP during MP start up. But this does not seem to be supported. :(

    The solution of manually modifying the language xml file is OK, until I come to try out a different skin that includes its own modified language xml file, whereupon that modified language xml file will overwrite my modified language xml file. So if I decide to revert to my previous skin, that language xml file will persist, and my modifications will be gone. :( Or have I misunderstood how these changes would interact?

    Be that as it may, I accept that there is no clean, properly-architected facility for this degree of customisation, and I must make do with the support that is actually available. :(

    I have not tried this, as I currently have only one disk partition with MP, and that is my "production" partition, which I do not want to perturb. (Running an install process that makes unknown changes to my system is too risky for my production system!)

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     
  8. wizard123
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    I'm not really sure what your issue is, if the modifications are for you only then you dont need to modify the strings xml at all. If you do want to modify the strings xml go for it and just back it up incase you switch skins ?
     
  9. catavolt
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    Skins don´t overwrite the standard MP language files, they use skin translations in a special translation folder inside the skin folder and the skintranslations.dll to show the translations in the skin. That´s why I gave you that advice ;)
     
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