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Video navigation

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Home icon grey.png   ▶ Video library ▶ Video navigation

The library organizes your videos into three basic categories, Movies, TV Shows and Music Videos. Further these categories are divided into sub-categories, allowing you to find a specific video through criteria like genre, actors, directors, year, or even custom video nodes. Navigating the video library deals greatly with various views, the sidebar menu, and context menu.

Contents

1 Sidebar menu

The sidebar on any given screen, be it in Library view or File view, changes the view types and filters. In most skins you can access the side bar by navigating left till the sidebar opens up, or in some cases you must navigate up or down to bring up those view options.

Library.videos.controls.jpg
View
You can the toggle between the different display options, amongst others; List, Thumbnails, Fanart and Cover Flow.
View of the different layout offered by Confluence Skin
Sort By
You can choose what criteria to sort your Videos by. Note the arrow to the right which controls whether the items are sorted in ascending or descending order.
Filter
Allows you to filter the media files to only show videos that include the specified string in the name. See also Advanced library filtering.
Misc Options
Hide Watched
Toggles between All Videos and Unwatched. XBMC will show either all videos or only unwatched media.
Search
You can search for a string anywhere in the XBMC video database. See Searching your library for more information.
Stack
Enables direct playback of videos that are in folders, without having to open those folders first, as well as displaying multi-part video files as single items in non-library views.
Flatten
Removes the title, genre etc nodes from the library view. Selecting a category takes you straight to the title view.


2 Contextual menu

In library view, selecting a movie that has been designated as a movie folder, the following options are available:

Context.library.myvideos.movies.jpg
Queue Item
Adds the item to the Now Playing playlist.
Resume from (time) e.g. 00:02:21
If you previously started watching a file (after a preset time elapsed) and stopped, you can resume viewing from the moment you stopped. see also: Advanced settings override
Play from here
This will start playback from this file onwards (not including the file highlighted)
Add to Favourites
Adds the item to your Favourites menu.
Movie / TV Show Information
Shows the relevant information, gathered through scrapers, such as the movie or TV show info of the selected file.
Mark as Watched
Changes the video status to watched, can also set unwatched, see above.
Edit Title
Changes the name of the item within the Library.
Link to TV show
If a particular Movie has a TV series, you can link to said TV Series.
Remove From Library
Removes the selected item from the video database.
Update Library
Checks if files in the Library have been added and modifies the database accordingly. Adds missing media to the database.


Other possible menu items
Play
Plays the selected file, resumes a video from the last stopped position.
Play using
Allows you to select which player to use for video playback, depending on platform available players.

3 Views

4 Searching the library

The search button is available to help you search the video database. Select it to begin your search. A keyboard will pop-up where you may enter search terms (SMS style with the remote, or just using the virtual keyboard). Note that search results will appear in the following order (where matches are found) Genres, Actors (Artists), Directors, By Name, and By Plot. Within each grouping movies will always be first, followed by TV shows and then music videos.

Note: In order to search within words as well as just for words beginning with your search string, place a % sign in front of the match.

4.1 Library filtering

Advancedfiltering.jpg

Advanced Library Filtering is a new feature for XBMC Frodo developed for Google Summer of Code 2012. It replaces the very basic filtering option which allowed users to enter a part of a media title and get a list of matching items with a much more sophisticated filtering functionality which, depending on the media type, offers filtering by title, genre, actors and much more.

5 Media information screen

Library.videos.movieinfo.png

In addition to various display layouts, a media information screen can be shown from contextual menu (C on keyboard) or by pressing info on the remote (i on keyboard).

From here you can refresh the information on your media, i.e. in the case of a wrong match during scanning. Here you can also change fanart and media thumbs, where the number of images being offered may depend on your scraper settings.

6 Linking movies to TV shows

Movie linked to TV show.png

When you are in the Movies section of XBMC you can select a movie and bring up the contextual menu (C on a keyboard) and select "Link to TV show". This will bring up a list of TV shows that are currently in your library. When you link a movie to a TV show it will make that movie show up in the TV show's library view. Multiple movies can be linked to a TV show, but a movie can only be linked to one show at a time.

7 Movie sets

XBMC can optionally sort your movies into sets for better organization. Movies sets are for sequels or movies that are otherwise apart of a directly related series, rather than a genre or playlist. Movies can only be in one set at a time. Movie sets can be defined by the scraper, by NFO files, or by using XBMC's built-in sets editor.

8 Video library tags

Since v12 Frodo, XBMC supports Tags which can be applied to movies, TV shows, and music videos. They are meant to supplement Movie sets which are (by design) limited in their usage. A movie or TV show can have multiple tags attached and a tag can contain multiple tags. They can be used as keywords, categories, filters, or whatever you want. Movies and TV shows can have multiple tags. Tags can be used to filter and navigate the library. Tags can be edited and managed directly from the XBMC GUI.

9 Media stubs

As of v11 (Eden), XBMC has support for offline media stub files. These are files that represent a media outside of the online digital infrastructure and allow XBMC's library to catalogue your "offline" media collection, as well as ask for the media when selected for playback.

10 Video nodes

Video nodes are defined views that are used to organize your media from the videos menu. In the past XBMC has had a number of standard nodes such as Title, Director, Year, Studios, Countries, Genres that were hard coded. As of v12 Frodo, XBMC introduces the ability to customize these nodes using an XML file. Using XML files really gives great flexibility in how you display your media. Don't want your screaming kids stuff in your main movie node... exclude it. Want documentaries in a separate node, create it. Don't like how recently added is presented, change it.

To get full functionality from custom nodes, you need to use a skin that allows you to deploy them as you would like (e.g. latest builds of Aeon Nox). Confluence will show your nodes, but doesn't allow you to decide exactly where.

11 Playlists

  • Basic playlists - XBMC supports both basic playlists and smart playlists. A basic playlist is a normal text file that lists one or more media files (Audio or Video), and plays them in succession. You can either create your own or use existing playlists from other sources, such as a playlist generated from Winamp, iTunes, or other sources. Basic playlists can be created and edited directly from XBMC's GUI.
  • Smart playlists - XBMC supports smart playlists for all types of media (excluding pictures), which essentially use a set of rules to limit the results from the databases. This means that to be able to create a smart playlist in the GUI, music/video must first be added to the libraries using a scraper addon or by creating NFO files. Smart playlist can be created either by using the built-in GUI smart playlist editor accessible from the Playlists section, or by creating an XML file with the extension XSP (XBMC Smart Playlist).

12 How to separate the library (cartoons, documentaries, anime, etc)

A common question people have after setting up their library is how can they separate their library so not everything is just in one big section, and how to have that as an option on the home screen in XBMC.

XBMC can already filter and separate library items using a number of methods mentioned above, and combined with a skin that supports custom home items, the library can be laid out exactly was you want, right from the home screen.

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