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October 2007 - Posts

  • Comskip - Live Detection

    Comskip users rejoice.  Comskip now supports live detection.  If you're using 1.2.0.9 everything will work, you just need to configure dtb for live detection (the first step); you may want to download the latest rev of comskip there was a relevant bug fix.  None of this would be possible without Erik's (comskip author) effort, so if you use comskip and find this feature valuable think about thanking him for the $20 he saved you.

    Other versions can do it to but it's a little more work.

    • download the latest rev (0.79.111)
    • extract it to the DTB applications directory (usually %programfiles%\dvrmstoolbox\applications)
    • open comskip.ini in your favorite text editor and change/add the following lines
      • verbose=0 (optional)
      • delete_logo_file=1 (optional)
      • live_tv=1
      • live_tv_retries=120 300 (600 may be required for low quality SD ATSC)  
      • output_dvrmstb=1
      • dvrmsstandoff=120000
    • create a new profile in the DTB settings tool for comskip
    • add the ComskipAdvanced and FWThrottle actions
    • Configure it to scan the input file, and enter the full path to the commercial xml files
    • Order FWThrottle above ComskipAdvanced, name the profile and save it
    • Go to the Processing Tab in the settings tool and select the new profile.  Click "Save" to exit the tool
    • Open the PC tool and change the "Every File" PC to use the new profile

     If you need to incorporate this into profile that do more advanced things, just add the ComskipAdvanced action before the FindCommercials (leave FindCommercials it will read the xml file created by comskip and not run comskip again) action, and check "ContinueOnFail".

  • DVRMSToolbox For Vista - 1.2.0.9 (Public Release)

    UPDATE:  I should have mentioned originally that there were changes, mostly bug fixes, b/w EA 1.2.0.9 and this release.  If you installed the EA release you should uninstall it and use this release instead.

    Version 1.2.0.9
    - Added ConvertWithFfmpeg for simplified use of r9976+ Ffmpeg for file conversion
    - Added file cleanup options to the FW
    - Added setting to disable key handling in the addin
    - Added functionality to terminate the addin by pressing a key (D3 by default)
    - Significant changes in key handling and object consumption in the addin, should address performance issues
    - Changed to custom build of Toub.MediaCenter.Dvrms.dll resolved memory allocation problem when splicing on Vista, Title - Subtitle concatenation in new file, and error when copying metadata on non-NTSC content
    - Changed MCEState registration mechanism, should fix registration issues on some machines and x64
    - Updated Mencoder to Version 12
    - Added Profile inheritance feature to settings tool
    - Set tab order in settings tool
    - Updated MemMapFile.dll to version included in Vista MC SDK
    - Added prevent standby option to Processing settings
    - Added Quiet option to ConvertWithFfmpeg
    - Added ConvertWithWMEncoder to advanced actions
    - Fixed a bug in ConvertWithGraph where OutputFile was not set to the file created
    - Added option to disable commercialskipping in the addin
    - Introduced aggressive ThreadPool usage into the addin, should increase responsiveness for those experiencing issues.
    - Introduced time based (configurable) method to reduce file detection.
    - Added Video/DVD bookmarking feature to the addin (note this has been updated from early EA builds, old bookmarks are incompatible.)
    - Comskip version 0.79.110 (supports live detection) included
    - SA version 0.9.2
    - Fixed a bug when using comskip

    x86 | x64 | Manual | Source 

  • BestBuy HD-DVD Deal

    If you were thinking about picking up a 360 HD-DVD drive, now might be the time to jump on it.  One of my friends (who's much better at finding the deals) was able to get the drive Heroes season one + 2 (under $35) discs in store + King Kong + 5 discs in the mail from Best Buy for $180.  He said it was in the computer so there wasn't even any hassle with price matching, even though the extra 2 movies was originally a mistake BB decided to officially honor it.
    Posted Oct 26 2007, 10:21 AM by babgvant with 2 comment(s)
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  • Migrating off Windows Home Server

    Windows Home Server (WHS) has a lot of promise, offering an easy way to get things like backups, shares, a website and remote access.  I think the biggest problem with WHS is that it's targeting a market that's already figured out how to do most of those things.

    With the expiration date looming (12/15) and a $180 price tag to keep it up; I've started planning my migration off of WHS.  Weighing the price against what other things I could get for the money (750GB HD), I just can't justify the price tag for an OEM (non-transferable) license.

    Running through the features there's really only one thing (backups) that I'm really going to miss when I turn off the WHS box.

    Shares - This is easier with WHS, but it's not that hard to setup in the first place.  Simplifying the process adds value if you don't know how to share a folder, but I think most of buyers for WHS already know how to do this.  If they don't, there are plenty of guides on the internet, and anyone who knows that WHS exists knows how to search the internet.

    Remote Access - This is much easier with WHS, but (and maybe this is just my experience) it's also much slower.  Personally I setup RDP tunneling over SSH a long time ago, so this feature didn't net me anything functionally.  It was more convenient to not need a SSH client installed on the machine, but it was so much slower than the alternative, any convenience was far out weighed.

    Website - Another thing that's easier to use, but very limited.  With so many free website applications (Community Server being one) that offer so much more functionality I never spent much time looking into this.  I have to admit some bias with this one; in real life I spend most of my time working with web applications so I found the configuration to be limiting, especially when it came to using an alternate (non-live) dns name.  There really should be a feature to enter a dns name and have WHS generate a new cert based on that name.  The files section is nice, especially the automatic zipping, but not a huge leap over ftp (or a secure alternative).

    Unified Storage  - This is a really neat concept, but I found the implementation to be annoying.  Copying large files, or multiple large files, went much slower than it should have because at some arbitrary point demigrator would kick in and kill disc I/O.  Trying to copy a set of large files from one PC to the WHS and a set of large files to a different PC was painful.  I ended up splitting the available disc into two groups, one for WHS to use for backups and misc files, the other a JBOD collection that I managed like normal disc. 

    Media Connect - I have no use for this feature.  I don't say that because I don't think it's valuable, I just don't have any need for it.

    Backups - I will miss this one, kind of... It's really nice to be able to easily automate backups, I wish there was more granular control over what gets backed up, but it's nice.  I'm going to blame the pre-Gold nature of my installation, but I found this feature to be no where near as reliable as it needs to be.  I had around a 50% success rate for retrieving files from backups (only tried it 4 times).  My backup database got corrupt twice, and I had to delete the entire backup set to fix it.  The backup service fails periodically and I have to reboot the box to get it going, but the there's no status message to tell me that it failed.  I find out when the connector application complains that X computer hasn't been backed up in 5 days.  Again this is probably pre-Gold teething, but it doesn't fill me with confidence.

    Mail - NM, this isn't a feature of WHS;)  Where is the POP service?  SMTP is installable, but that's not terribly useful by itself.  I'm not looking for a full-blown Exchange install (wait wasn't WHS based on SBS, which has Exchange?), just something simple that I can enable mail if I want to.

    Maybe v2 will offer better value for the $$$. 

  • Drool

    mmm... GT-R...

    I really need to start playing the lotto :)

    Posted Oct 23 2007, 12:50 PM by babgvant with no comments
    Filed under:
  • Updated DVRMSToolbox For Vista - 1.2.0.9 (Early Access Release) (Again)

    Just uploaded another version of 1.2.0.9.  Look at the change log below for details.  This build id feature complete; barring any major bugs this will be the release version of 1.2.0.9.  Sorry for all the interim builds this time around.

    It is important to uninstall the old rev first, this one will not install on top of older revs cleanly.


    Version 1.2.0.9
    - Added ConvertWithFfmpeg for simplified use of r9976+ Ffmpeg for file conversion
    - Added file cleanup options to the FW
    - Added setting to disable key handling in the addin
    - Added functionality to terminate the addin by pressing a key (D3 by default)
    - Significant changes in key handling and object consumption in the addin, should address performance issues
    - Changed to custom build of Toub.MediaCenter.Dvrms.dll resolved memory allocation problem when splicing on Vista, Title - Subtitle concatenation in new file, and error when copying metadata on non-NTSC content
    - Changed MCEState registration mechanism, should fix registration issues on some machines and x64
    - Updated Mencoder to Version 12
    - Added Profile inheritance feature to settings tool
    - Set tab order in settings tool
    - Updated MemMapFile.dll to version included in Vista MC SDK
    - Added prevent standby option to Processing settings
    - Added Quiet option to ConvertWithFfmpeg
    - Added ConvertWithWMEncoder to advanced actions
    - Fixed a bug in ConvertWithGraph where OutputFile was not set to the file created
    - Added option to disable commercialskipping in the addin
    - Introduced aggressive ThreadPool usaged into the addin, should increase responsiveness for those experiencing issues.
    - Introduced time based (configurable) method to reduce file detection.
    - Added Video/DVD bookmarking feature to the addin (note this has been updated from early EA builds, old bookmarks are incompatible.)
    - Comskip version 0.79.105 inlcuded
    - SA version 0.9.1
@2008 andy vt
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