1.27.0 Recorded TV Thumbnail Oddities (1 Viewer)

rsbrux

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    To resolve a problem with TV recording, I deleted all channels and rescanned them. As a result, all of my recorded TV thumbnails were lost. The TV service appears to haveautomatically recreated the thumbnails which appear in the details pane (the ones residing in %ProgramData%\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\thumbs\tv\Recorded\). However, they are all PNG files but with the extension .jpg. The symbols which accompany the titles in the list pane (which are usually the logos of the recorded channels) are still missing.
    It may be too much to ask now that mm has left the project, but it would be nice if:
    1. the recreated thumbnails were really JPEG files
    2. there were also a way to restore the list icons
     

    CyberSimian

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    However, they are all PNG files but with the extension .jpg.
    I have not had the need to check this before, but I agree that the JPG thumbnails created from the recorded files have a header that contains the string "PNG". Very strange :confused:. It does not seem to cause a problem for MP, although it might do for other tools that require the file header to be consistent with the file extension.

    Why is it like this? One might speculate that MP started using JPG files, but at some later time because of the threats of demanding royalties from software that uses JPGs, MP switched to using PNGs. But there were by then already MP skins that had hard-coded JPG as the extension, so the solution of creating a PNG but with a file extension of JPG was adopted.

    The symbols which accompany the titles in the list pane (which are usually the logos of the recorded channels) are still missing.
    These channel logos do not appear by default -- you have to set up your system to use them. The logos reside in the "MediaPortal" folder, and not in the "TV Server" folder, so rescanning your channels would not have deleted the logos. If the logos are not appearing, that can be caused by the channel names being different. Look at these folders to see if the logos are present:

    C:\ProgramData\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\Thumbs\TV\Logos\
    C:\ProgramData\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\Thumbs\Radio\

    If these folders are empty, simply download a logo package and copy TV logos to the TV folder, and radio logos to the radio folder (this is what I did). Alternatively, there is I think a plugin for handling channel logos, but I have not used it, so you will need to investigate that for yourself.

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     

    rsbrux

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    Thanks for your cogent response. I have always had a complete set of logos in C:\ProgramData\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\Thumbs\TV\Logos\. Otherwise, i wouldn't have been surprised by their disappearance after deleting and rescanning the TV channels. ;-) A few of the channels have indeed changed names, but by no means all, and in many cases, I left the old logos in place. In the recording list, however, all logos disappeared from the existing recordings; logos are shown only for recordings made since the channel reconfiguration (see screenshot: yes, I know it's an antique skin, but I prefer the minimalist approach to the newer, "eye-candy"-rich GUIs ;-) ).
    If the logos are coming from C:\ProgramData\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\Thumbs\TV\Logos\, then the channel refresh must have broken the corresponding links or references. If not, maybe a cache somewhere got deleted. I have had a similar experience sometimes (but not always) after reinstalling MP and importing the existing recordings.
    IAC, I plan to follow your suggestion in our other thread of a clean MP reinstall. I have little left to lose, and perhaps it will resolve another problem I experience intermittently with the current installation: often ( it seems like every other day), pressing "enter" on a selected program in the TV guide fails to schedule a recording. Instead, i have to use the "Advanced record" menu to schedule a recording. This seems to be an example of the relevant error (logs attached):
    [2021-02-19 18:09:49,671] [Error ] [MPMain ] [ERROR] - OnMessage exception:confused:ystem.NullReferenceException: Object reference not set to an instance of an object.
    at TvPlugin.TVProgramInfo_OnRecordProgram(Program program)
    at TvPlugin.TVProgramInfo_OnClicked(Int32 controlId, GUIControl control, ActionType actionType)
     

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    CyberSimian

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    In the recording list, however, all logos disappeared from the existing recordings; logos are shown only for recordings made since the channel reconfiguration (see screenshot)
    Hmm. :confused:

    It is not obvious what might be causing this, but I would suggest looking at the XML file for one of the recordings where the channel logo is absent, and comparing the channel name in the XML file with the name of the channel logo file. These names need to be identical, and the mixture of upper and lower case must be identical too.

    If the names differ, you can change either the name in TV Server, or the name of the channel logo file. But if you do the latter, you will need to go to the "Cache" folder in the "MediaPortal" folder and delete the folder for the skin that you are using (don't worry -- MP will recreate the folder in the cache when the client next starts).

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     

    rsbrux

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    Thanks for the suggestions, but C:\ProgramData\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\Thumbs\TV\Logos\ does contain logos which exactly match the CHANNEL-NAME field in the XML files. Nonetheless I tried deleting the skin cache, which as you predicted, was recreated. Three of the recreated files (attached) contain logos, but there is no change in the recordings list. I will try a fresh installation, but have little hope of recovering the channel logos for the older recordinsg and fully expect to lose them for the new ones as well. ;-{
     

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    rsbrux

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    After performing a fresh install, I am still missing the channel logos for older recordings. The channel logos for the new ones are still there. Here is my theory:
    After examining the TV DB, it looks as though the logos are linked to the channels via the ID key field in the DB, not through the text in the XML files. As is generally the case, the DB uses sequentially assigned numbers for the index key, so rescanning the channels assigned new index key values to all channels. Even if it is possible, I don't want to fool around with index ke fields in the DB. Unless someone has a better explanation or suggestion, I guess I will have to live with the missing logos ;-{
     

    CyberSimian

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    After performing a fresh install, I am still missing the channel logos for older recordings.
    Hmm. This still does NOT seem correct. :confused:

    The channel logos reside in an MP folder, and not in a TV-Server folder. When the MP client displays the "Recorded TV" panel, it is the MP client that selects the channel logos from the channel-logo folder. The logos do not have any numeric channel ids associated with them in the folder, so the only way that the MP client can pick the correct logo is by name, i.e. the MP client picks the logo whose file name is the same as the channel name.

    As far as I know, the MP client does not access TV Server's database directly, so TV Server must be sending the channel identification to the client in the form of a channel name, and not in the form of a numeric channel id.

    Well, it seems to me that that is how it should work, but I don't really know. o_O
    Sorry, I don't have any more ideas. :(

    Edit: added a missing NOT, which reverses the meaning of what I had typed originally. :eek:

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     
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    rsbrux

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    @CyberSimian
    Thanks for responding, but I'm afraid I don't quite follow you. If the MP client doesn't consult the TV server to display recordings, then I don't understand why:
    1. TV server must be running to show recordings in the MP client.
    2. The recordings must first have been imported into TV server.
    The wiki page mentioned above supports your thesis, saying " MediaPortal only differentiates between channels by their names ". However, this doesn't jibe with my experience. I have loaded logos for all of the different name variants of my channels into c:\ProgramData\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\thumbs\tv\logos\ (see attached zipfile), but the older recordings still show no channel logos. I have also attached a zipfile containing most of the recording XML files, so you can see that there are logos for the channel names contained in them. In fact, there are cases where I have a new recording and an old one with the same channel name, but the channel logo is only displayed for the newer one.

    The wiki article also makes me wonder if I couldn't fix the problem by re-importing the recordings, but since they are already in the DB, none appear on the "Database import" tab and I don't see any way to reset the DB, short of going into SQL Server Management Studio and dropping tables, which could go horribly wrong. I suppose I could try moving all recording to a new folder, but what would happen to all of the DB entries referencing non-existent files?

    This also brings up a question which has long bothered me out of idle curiosity: Most of my recordings wind up directly in the folder specified on the "Folders" tab, but a few get stored in subfolders of the form .\channel\title\. I have observed this peculiarity in MP going back for years. Is there any rhyme or reason to this?
     

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    CyberSimian

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    I don't quite follow you. If the MP client doesn't consult the TV server
    I am not 100% certain, but I think that the MP client sends a query request to TV Server, and TV Server then queries the recordings database, parcels up the responses, and sends them back to the MP client as a set of character strings. The numeric channel id is of no use to the MP client, so I think that it must be the channel name that is sent from TV Server to the MP client, and then the MP client uses that name to pick the correct channel logo from the MP logos folder.

    makes me wonder if I couldn't fix the problem by re-importing the recordings
    This might work. The simplest way is to create an empty folder called (say) "Recordings2", and then start "TV Server Config" and change the name of the recordings folder to "Recordings2". When you then select a different section in "TV Server Config" or click "OK", TV Server will (I think) restart, as it needs to switch from the old folder to the new one.

    Next, start the MP client, and use the "database cleanup" function. This is located in the left side menu in the "Recorded TV" panel. If your skin does not have this choice, it is too old, so start "DefaultWideHD" and use that ("DefaultWideHD" is installed by default). Note: ignore the pop-up with the warning saying that files will be deleted -- they won't. Another pop-up appears with some choices. Select "Delete invalid entries from database". This will empty the recordings database but not delete any files.

    You can empty the recordings database by using "TV Server Config", but it displays a pop-up for each file to be deleted. This is very time consuming if you have a lot of files. Using the MP client will empty the database in one operation.

    Close the MP client, start "TV Server Config" and change the recordings folder back to the original one. Then go to "Database Import" and import the recordings.

    Before doing any of the above, check that you do not have duplicate channels defined on the "TV Channels" panel. Click the heading of the "Channel Name" column so that they are sorted by channel name. Then look for names that occur twice (they will be adjacent in the list). For each pair, delete the one that does not work.

    Most of my recordings wind up directly in the folder specified on the "Folders" tab, but a few get stored in subfolders of the form .\channel\title\. I have observed this peculiarity in MP going back for years. Is there any rhyme or reason to this?
    It is controlled by the "Custom paths and filenames" tab in the "Recording section in "TV Server Config". See this page in the Wiki. You can specify two different filename patterns -- one for single recordings, and a separate one for series. The default values put series recordings into subfolders. You can also control what information is placed in the filename.

    I don't bother with subfolders, and have changed the settings so that the same filename patterns are used for single recordings and for series recordings. MP will still display recordings in a series as a "virtual subfolder", so putting them into a real subfolder does not seem to provide much benefit.

    -- from CyberSimian in the UK
     

    rsbrux

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    Thanks for the detailed instructions, which worked as you predicted. The exercise revealed only 5 recording on 3 channels whose names had changed, so there is evidently some other mechanism than simple text matching at work in mapping the channel logos.
    MP has a hard time distinguishing between series and single movies, sometimes treating movies as series episodes and vice versa. This is probably due to missing or inaccurate information in my cable provider's program guide. The "SERIESNUM" and "EPISODE*" tags are always empty in my XML fields, even for the recordings that MP has filed away as series episodes. Naturally this makes me wonder how MP decides that they are series episodes ;.) IAC, I am just eliminating the different treatment between "Movies" and "Series" on the "Custom paths and filenames" tab.
    I also took the opportunity to regenerate the recording thumbs. It makes little sense that the default "Time Offset" for extracting recording thumbs is zero when the default "Start recording" time is 7 minutes before the scheduled program starts.
     

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