| Guide to Create, Modify and Re-build your Video Library
The aim of these modules is to provide the required information to enable you to correctly set up, modify, and reinstate your Video library as required. As this guide is created for the new user, most pages have been created with minimal jargon and short explanations in an effort to reduce information overload and confusion. Where extra information is provided, note is made to what can be safely ignored.
| Library Management|
Now that you have your library setup and have become confident with using Kodi, you can start experimenting with modifying your library so it better suits your preferences.
This page will guide you to other wiki pages that are commonly used to modify the library.
| Video Playback Controls
A guide that describes the player controls, how to access on-screen displays, adjust settings for video, audio, subtitles and more.
| Index of Video articles|
A listing of Video library related pages
Assorted how-tos related to the video library:
The Source is the main folder on your hard drive which contains your collection of Movies or TV Shows or Music Videos or Music. These four classes of media cannot be mixed in the one Source. Once the Sources are set up, Kodi can perform the appropriate actions to display your media. There is no limit to the number of Sources that can be added to Kodi for each media class. Filter is a Music and Video Library feature that allows a user to quickly reduce a list of titles to a smaller list that matches a user specified criteria. For example, filter the main listing of movies to only movies whose genre is Science Fiction. This page is a collection of tips, tricks, advice, and links relating to anime and Kodi. This includes anime-specific add-ons, common file names and scraping of anime into the video library, and more. This guide will show you how to backup the video library using NFO files and local images. These NFO files are little text files that save all the "metadata" (summaries, credits, playcount, and other library data) for each individual video that are then placed along side the actual video files. These act as a backup for each entry, and can also be used as a way of changing library information or for scanning files that are not recognized by a scraper website. This also saves any changes you've made in Kodi, such as changing the title, sort title, selecting specific images/artwork, movie sets, video library tags, watched history, and resume points.
Backing up the video library is a good idea for several reasons: rebuilding your library in case of damage to your main HTPC, mistakenly removed library entries, duplicate the same library on other Kodi installs, or let you to easily move your video files without losing special changes or your watched history. It also allows for off-line library scanning or if a scraper website goes away.
The aim of these modules is to provide the required information to enable you to correctly set up, modify, and reinstate your Video library as required. As this guide is created for the new user, most pages have been created with minimal jargon and short explanations in an effort to reduce information overload and confusion. Where extra information is provided, note is made to what can be safely ignored. In a default Kodi installation, with a properly setup and scraped library, all Movies will be under the Main Menu Movie button, and your TV shows will be under the TV Shows button. All your Sci Fi movies will be mixed in with your Westerns, Animated, Romantic Comedies, Concert Films, etc. and the same for your different TV show types or genres.
This Guide explains the process of creating new Main Menu items to enable separate main menu listings. Example uses include:
- Separating childrens movies from mature movies
- Separately list documentaries, cartoons, sci-fi or any other genre
- Separately list Home Movies
DSPlayer is a DirectShow based player for XBMC. DSPlayer support DXVA hardware acceleration (works in Windows Vista and higher), as well as any custom DirectShow filters (e.g. LAV filters, ffdshow, ac3filter). The Event Log is a feature introduced with the release of v17. It is a user accessible and easy to understand log of Kodi events which will display information such as failed video library scraping, Add-on updates and PVR activities, to name a few. The Extras add-on allows easy access to all the bonus material that usually comes packaged with the main movie of the DVD or BluRay. Save these Extras, such as Bloopers, Cast Interviews, Production Notes, etc along with the main movie in a folder named Extras. Access theses Extras from the Context Menu of the movie. No scraper is 100% accurate. Errors arise from either mistakes by the user, inherent limitations of the scraper, and/or errors at the site of the information provider. If you have followed the guide, the errors you encounter will be minimal. For those errors that do occur, this page will help correct them. Sorry, but we cannot fix stubborness or laziness for those that refuse to fix their file naming problems. This feature allows you to link a Move to a TV Show without the need of keeping two copies of the video file on your system. eg, linking Serenity (2005) to the tv show Firefly. If you have a collection of DVD's and Bluray disks but do not want to rip them to a hard drive, then a Media Stub File allows you to add the collection of disks to the Kodi Video Library. It is a simple text based file that is added to your Source in exactly the same way as any other Movie or TV Show, which is then scanned or scraped into the library. This page describes three advancedsettings.xml settings that can be used to modify when "watched" and "resume" marks are saved. These settings can also be used to prevent automatically saving watched and resume points. A watched point records if a video has been watched or not. A resume point records where in a video file playback has stopped, so it can be resumed later. This page describes three advancedsettings.xml settings that can be used to maximize the video playback cache. You can use all or just a couple of these settings to see significant improvements in cache performance, should you require it (most users will not require these modifications). This can help with intermittent network issues, buffering, reduce how long the network is tied up, and sometimes improve battery life. Kodi has the ability to display information and artwork for your video collection. As this information and artwork comes from third-party sites, video files must be placed in a certain folder structure and named correctly so accurate matches can be made with those third-party sites. These pages describe the Best Practice methods to use for the most reliable scraping process. This page will describe the Kodi best practice to name Movie files and create the folder structure to save them in. Your movie folder and files will be placed within your Source folder.
The default scraper used by Kodi for Movies is the TheMovieDB (TMDB). Other scrapers are available and can be found by searching the Kodi site here
1 Folder & Naming Conventions
Once the Source has been created on your drive, there are are two options on how to store your movies.
1.1 Movie Folder
This is the Kodi best practide method for naming and storing movie media. See the two images below.
- Placing movies in their own folder allows saving of local artwork and nfo files alongside the movie file.
- You have the choice of using the Short or Long name format for artwork
- Using this method will provide the safest and most accurate scrape of your media collection.
- If using VIDEO_TS or BDMV folder structure you must enable Recursive lookup when adding the source directory.
- There is some limited flexibility to correct naming, but not all methods are 100% guaranteed to work.
- Some skins use modified filenaming to display Media Flags. These apply to the filename, not the folder name. Check the forum of your skin for correct use.
- The name used for the folder and video file is the movie name as displayed at TheMovieDB (we are using default TheMovieDB scraper).
- The second image above is a screenshot of the Blade Runner 2049 movie entry at TheMovieDatabase site. The name of the movie folder and video file should match the name displayed at the scraper site, as shown in the two images above.
- Inside the Source folder, create a folder named with the movie title
- Movie Folder names must contain the Title and should contain the Year. Although not a strict requirement, the year should be in brackets.
- Within the new movie folder, save the video file
- The setting Movies are in separate folders that match the movie title which is located in the Set Content settings page of the Source has the following effect:
- If Enabled Kodi will use the folder name to scrape the movie
- If Disabled Kodi will use the filename to scrape the movie
- In light of the above, and because many users are unaware or forget this setting, Kodi recommends naming the movie file the same as the folder name as shown in the example image above
- The filename can be modified to include Media Flags
1.2 Filename Only
An alternate method of storing your movies is to save all the movie files inside the Source folder and omit the Movie folder. Also known as a flat folder structure. See image to right.
This method requires that the movie file is named correctly as Kodi is forced to use the movie filename to match the entry at the scraper site.
The movie filename must contain the Title and should contain the Year. Although not a strict requirement, the year should be in brackets. It should match the entry at the scraper site as shown in the above images.
There are disadvantages using this method:
- With larger libraries, this method can become untidy and cumbersome to maintain
- If you use nfo files and save local artwork, the folder will become even more cluttered
- Some Artwork add-ons will not work with this method as they require a Movie Folder
- Saving locally stored Artwork will be problematic.
- The option Movies are in separate folders that match the movie title in the Set Content settings page of the Source does not apply to this method.
1.3 Extra Video Files
It is not uncommon to have extra video files that are somehow related to the main movie. Clips such as bloopers, interviews with cast and crew, production methods, behind the scenes, etc.
Kodi will see all these additional video files saved inside the movie folder and attempt to scrape them, which will cause incorrect and unwanted multiple entries in the library. How Kodi actually treats these will depend upon which settings are enabled and which folder structure and naming convention is in use.
To safely store extra video files along with your movie, and have them accessible within Kodi, you will need to install the Extras add-on. Follow the instructions in the link below to create the correct folder structure. This add-on will only work with Movie Folders.
Requires the use of Movie Folders
- See: Extras
The remainder of this page deals with Special Use cases and can be safely ignored. Most libraries will not require implementing the following additional name extensions.
Next step: Naming TV Shows
2 Stub and Stream Files
If you have a collection of DVD's and Bluray disks but do not want to rip them to a hard drive, then a Media Stub File allows you to add the collection of disks to the Kodi Video Library. It is a simple text based file that is added to your Source in exactly the same way as any other Movie or TV Show, which is then scanned or scraped into the library.
Various internet video and audio streams can be played back in Kodi as if they were locally stored on your media center by using STRM files. As long as the format and streaming-method (network-protocol) is supported by Kodi, stream can be added. These are basic text files that look like <name>.strm and contain a URL to the internet stream. STRM files can also be added to the video library and can have cover art, summaries, etc.
Some internet sites may have an add-on available that can also access these media streams, rather than having to manually create STRM files. See Add-ons for more information on how to find and install add-ons.
3 Media Tags / Flags
Media flags are icons in Kodi that displays the meta-information from the media file of a movie, TV show or music title. They are skin specific, and what works in one skin, may not work in another skin. It is always best to check with the skin sub-forum which flags and tags are used.
It is important to note that the skin will display these flags even when these extensions are not used. The only difference being that without the extensions, the movie must be played first in order for Kodi to read the audio and video codec data.
The actual audio and video codec data will override any extension used. This means that if you set the extension of, say, .ATMOS but the video file only has a stereo track, then the .ATMOS flag will be removed.
Example- note that movie folders are used, and the folder is simply named while the filename has been modified with extensions.
...\Paul (2011)\Paul (2011).4K.HDR.Atmos.mkv
3.1 3D movies
Some 3D movies might need an additional file name extension to be identified by Kodi as a 3D movie. See 3D for details on that additional extension, and when it is needed.
4 Split Video Files
Also known as File Stacking, allows you to combine multiple movie files so they appear and play as the one movie. No longer a common requirement, but still available in Kodi should it be needed.
An example of this use is the Special Extended DVD Edition of The Lord of the Rings- The Fellowship of the Ring. Due to the length of the movie, the movie was split and released on two DVD's requiring a DVD change half way through the movie. This means that when storing this movie, the rip creates two separate movie files. When watching the movie, there will be an interruption when the first part ends and the second part needs to be selected to play.
Two options to overcome this issue:
- Combine both movie files into a single movie file.
- Leave them as Split Video Files, but allow Kodi to combine them into the one library entry (kodi does not combine the actual movie files)
To use this function the following steps are required:
- The setting Combine split video items must be enabled in the Settings menu. See: Settings>Media>Files
- Modify the movie file names, as described below, so that Kodi recognises them as Split Video Files
- Can only be used with the Movie Folder & Filename method described above
The default expressions will NOT stack files which use only a number without the extensions stated below (eg movie1.avi, movie2.avi). This is intentional due to false positives which can occur with sequels, eg Die Hard 1, Die Hard 2, Die Hard 3, etc.
4.1 Movie Files
These are for multi-part video files in the same Movie folder. eg *.mkv, *.mp4, *.avi etc
The following are default stacking extensions that can be added to file names.
# = 1 thru 9 OR A thru D. No space. Default Stacking Extensions part# cd# dvd# pt# disk# disc# # = A thru D. No space. Default Stacking Extensions moviename#.ext
e:\Movies 1\Lucy (2014)A.mkv
e:\Movies 1\Lucy (2014)B.mkv
4.2 DVD & BluRay Folders
If you have preserved the DVD or Bluray folder structure, then use this method for folder stacking.
# = 1 thru 9. No space. Default Stacking Extensions cd# dvd# disk# disc#
4.3 Advanced Stacking Options
Return to top
Next step: Naming TV Shows Setting up TV Shows correctly is a little bit more involved than the Movies section. The first part of this page will describe the Kodi best practice to name TV Shows and Episode files and to create the folder structure to save them in. These methods are proven to be the simplest and most robust method which provides the most accurate scrape. The Season Rename feature allows you to change the name of a TV Show Season from the default Season x format to a name of your choosing. This can be used in Anime, or those TV Shows that have special names for Seasons, like Torchwood. As per Kodi v13 "Gotham", subtitles support is now built into Kodi. And instead of downloading a full subtitle download add-on, you now install one (or more) specific subtitle services. UPnP sharing between two Kodi devices is the easiest way to share a library. You can also share multiple libraries, one from each Kodi device, to all the other devices on the same network. UPnP also takes care of file sharing, so you do not need to do anything extra even if your files are added locally to Kodi. This page details the available methods to add, modify and remove videos from your existing video library. These instructions also apply to Music Videos Kodi v18- Leia introduces support for embedded video tags using *.mkv and *.mp4 video files. They are similar in principle to the tags saved in audio files. Only limited movie support is available at this time. Now that you have your library setup and have become confident with using Kodi, you can start experimenting with modifying your library so it better suits your preferences.
This page will guide you to other wiki pages that are commonly used to modify the library.