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  #1  
Old 06-30-2008, 01:33 PM
mikesm mikesm is offline
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Firing up powerdvd from SageMC for Bluray disks

Folks, I was wondering, has anyone written a set of scripts for SageMC that either by detecting a Blu-ray disk at insertion of manually from a menu item like "Play Blu-ray" that would fire-up powerdvd for playback, and once it's complete exits back to SageMC?

The issue here is for Netflix Blu-ray rentals. For disks that I own, I just rip and mux out the main video track and store that on the NAS and play it in SageMC as normal. But for netflix rentals, this is really a lot of hassle to go through for a disk that we play and then remove when we ship the disk back.

My wife doesn't like it that I have to go to all the work "just to play a netflix movie" that she has ordered, esp. if I am gone on a trip. So it would be nice to be able to fire up an external program to view it when its inserted in the drive.

I know SageMC supports an external DVD playback utility, but I have to have DVD's played by Sage, as all our DVD's are ripped on the HD and our kids need them on demand. This would just be for Blu-ray disks.

Any ideas?

Edit: There is a nice thread on mediaportal forums talking about how to do this under that platform and covers a lot of the issues involved with it: http://forum.team-mediaportal.com/pl...olution-32268/

Thx
Mike
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Last edited by mikesm; 06-30-2008 at 02:19 PM.
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  #2  
Old 06-30-2008, 09:34 PM
mikesm mikesm is offline
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Actually, I think I now know how to do this using SageMC's dynamic menus and one of the utilities developed for mediaportal. I'll let you know hoe it works next week when I finally rebuild my client next week.
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Client 1: Sage 6.5.9 - E7200, Abit IP35 Pro, ATI 4850 with HDMI connect to Denon 3808CI and Sony A3000 SXRD TV
Client 2: HD200 connected to Denon 3808CI and A3000 SXRD TV
Client 3: Media MVP to 15" Toshiba LCD
Client 4: HD100 connected to Samsung 23" 720P LCD
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  #3  
Old 06-30-2008, 11:16 PM
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mkanet mkanet is offline
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If you have Girder...

You can have Windows already play a blu-ray disk with PowerDVD when the disc is inserted; it doesnt need sageTV to do that. But, it wont stop SageTV playback either; if SageTV has active video.

If you already use Girder for your remote control, Girder comes with full support for PowerDVD already; just use the same remote to control all its features.

None of this is seemless; but at least its possible to have full control of both apps. I dont think there's any further support beyond that; or adding a menu item to dynamic menus to launch the app.
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  #4  
Old 07-01-2008, 08:39 AM
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bialio bialio is offline
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The area you might run into isues is if you use FSE on your client - after switching to PDVD and then back to sage, you might not have FSE anymore. That was always my experience with it when I tried to launch from Sage.

What I do is create seperate activites via my Harmony remote - one for PDVD, the other for Sage. When I "activate" PDVD, it exits Sage. When I "activate" Sage, it exits PDVD.

btl.
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  #5  
Old 07-01-2008, 09:11 AM
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mkanet mkanet is offline
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BTL, FSE isn't really a reliable way to use SageTV anyway; it's kind of always been an experimental feature. It doesnt some pretty strange stuff once in a while.

But, you did give me an idea! In fact, I just added it now... I just told sageTV to sleep when I press the PowerDVD button on my remote using Girder (if sageTV is active). The only problem with this is when I exit PowerDVD, it wont remember to restore SageTV back again (if sageTV was active and put to sleep when PowerDVD was launched)

Quote:
Originally Posted by bialio View Post
The area you might run into isues is if you use FSE on your client - after switching to PDVD and then back to sage, you might not have FSE anymore. That was always my experience with it when I tried to launch from Sage.

What I do is create seperate activites via my Harmony remote - one for PDVD, the other for Sage. When I "activate" PDVD, it exits Sage. When I "activate" Sage, it exits PDVD.

btl.
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  #6  
Old 07-01-2008, 11:15 AM
mikesm mikesm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkanet View Post
BTL, FSE isn't really a reliable way to use SageTV anyway; it's kind of always been an experimental feature. It doesnt some pretty strange stuff once in a while.

But, you did give me an idea! In fact, I just added it now... I just told sageTV to sleep when I press the PowerDVD button on my remote using Girder (if sageTV is active). The only problem with this is when I exit PowerDVD, it wont remember to restore SageTV back again (if sageTV was active and put to sleep when PowerDVD was launched)
Actually, SageMC dynamic menus handle this. When adding a new item that runs an external program, you can tell SageMC to sleep Sage, run the program and then awaken Sage. Or you can tell it to disable fullscreen before running the external program, and restore it after the program ends. very nice. I hadn't noticed this feature before I had asked my question. How can anyone use anything other than SageMC?

Anyways, that thread on the mediaportal programs I referenced has a nice little script (HD_starter.exe) that remaps the shortcuts for starting powerdvd and controlling it, and sets it to exit when using the back button, so it is a little less hassle to use than Girder.

I'm about to rebuild my one remaining PC client using a new 4850 video card with HDMI audio out, and I picked up a dual BLURAY/HDDVD rom/DVD drive for $120, so I will have a client that should be able to pretty much play back everything, and even have enough oomph to run FSX on my 60" SXRD, which should be very nice.

Everything else I've replaced with extenders, but the main TV is where my wife likes to play netflix rentals for the kids (and us), and also does Netflix watchitnow.

Getting powerdvd8 to play physical HD media is the last piece I needed. Hopefully this will improve WAF over the existing client there...
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Client 1: Sage 6.5.9 - E7200, Abit IP35 Pro, ATI 4850 with HDMI connect to Denon 3808CI and Sony A3000 SXRD TV
Client 2: HD200 connected to Denon 3808CI and A3000 SXRD TV
Client 3: Media MVP to 15" Toshiba LCD
Client 4: HD100 connected to Samsung 23" 720P LCD
Client 5: HD100 connected to Vizio VX37L
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  #7  
Old 07-01-2008, 11:28 AM
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mkanet mkanet is offline
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For me, it's just easier to press the PowerDVD button on my remote control; since I use to remote to control PowerDVD and sageTV anyway. Its not possible to map remote control buttons to SageMC's dynamic menu item; or that would definitely be my preferred method to start PowerDVD.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikesm View Post
Actually, SageMC dynamic menus handle this. When adding a new item that runs an external program, you can tell SageMC to sleep Sage, run the program and then awaken Sage. Or you can tell it to disable fullscreen before running the external program, and restore it after the program ends. very nice. I hadn't noticed this feature before I had asked my question. How can anyone use anything other than SageMC?

Anyways, that thread on the mediaportal programs I referenced has a nice little script (HD_starter.exe) that remaps the shortcuts for starting powerdvd and controlling it, and sets it to exit when using the back button, so it is a little less hassle to use than Girder.

I'm about to rebuild my one remaining PC client using a new 4850 video card with HDMI audio out, and I picked up a dual BLURAY/HDDVD rom/DVD drive for $120, so I will have a client that should be able to pretty much play back everything, and even have enough oomph to run FSX on my 60" SXRD, which should be very nice.

Everything else I've replaced with extenders, but the main TV is where my wife likes to play netflix rentals for the kids (and us), and also does Netflix watchitnow.

Getting powerdvd8 to play physical HD media is the last piece I needed. Hopefully this will improve WAF over the existing client there...
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  #8  
Old 07-01-2008, 11:42 AM
mikesm mikesm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkanet View Post
For me, it's just easier to press the PowerDVD button on my remote control; since I use to remote to control PowerDVD and sageTV anyway. Its not possible to map remote control buttons to SageMC's dynamic menu item; or that would definitely be my preferred method to start PowerDVD.
:-) I tried that approach for awhile but WAF was pretty low - even with a harmony 880. She just wants to hit "watch TV" and have Sage do everything. They only time she resorts to other remote controlled applications is to use the HD STB or standalone DVD players as backup if something happens to Sage.

Ah the issues with trying to please users... :-)
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Server: Sage 6.5.9 - X2 3800+, DFI NF4 MB, 1 GB, 300 GB HD (system disk), NV 7600GS, - Windows XP SP2
Client 1: Sage 6.5.9 - E7200, Abit IP35 Pro, ATI 4850 with HDMI connect to Denon 3808CI and Sony A3000 SXRD TV
Client 2: HD200 connected to Denon 3808CI and A3000 SXRD TV
Client 3: Media MVP to 15" Toshiba LCD
Client 4: HD100 connected to Samsung 23" 720P LCD
Client 5: HD100 connected to Vizio VX37L
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  #9  
Old 07-01-2008, 08:55 PM
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mkanet mkanet is offline
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Talking Best of both worlds, pleasing everyone.

Okay, finally had the motivation to make everything work.

Now...

1) I can press the PowerDVD button on my remote to start PowerDVD, sleep sageTV, when I press quit, IF sageTV was open when PowerDVD was launched, sageTV will be restored.

NOTE: I did this with simple dos batch files and girder.

2) I can start PDVD from SageMC dynamic menu, sleep sageTV, when I press quit, restore sageTV.

Best of both worlds, pleasing everyone.

I have PowerDVD now loading in full screen.. so its very seemless; especially since I'm using the same SageTV background and theme colors for PowerDVD's user inteface (using the custom Reloaded pack for PowerDVD 8).

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikesm View Post
:-) I tried that approach for awhile but WAF was pretty low - even with a harmony 880. She just wants to hit "watch TV" and have Sage do everything. They only time she resorts to other remote controlled applications is to use the HD STB or standalone DVD players as backup if something happens to Sage.

Ah the issues with trying to please users... :-)
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  #10  
Old 07-02-2008, 09:17 AM
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bialio bialio is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikesm View Post
:-) I tried that approach for awhile but WAF was pretty low - even with a harmony 880. She just wants to hit "watch TV" and have Sage do everything. They only time she resorts to other remote controlled applications is to use the HD STB or standalone DVD players as backup if something happens to Sage.

Ah the issues with trying to please users... :-)
My setup is close to that - hit "Watch TV" on the remote to fire up Sage. Hit "Play Movie" to fire up PowerDVD. Both are set in Harmony Setup to "power off" when not in use, and the power buttons I have defined really just exit the program / launch the program. It works really well.

And FSE works pretty flawless for me in Sage - very necesarry for the hardware i'm running to do HD without stuttering.

btl.
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  #11  
Old 07-02-2008, 10:22 AM
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mkanet mkanet is offline
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BTL I have some questions about the Harmony remote control...

Currently I am using an MCE IR ONLY remote control paired with Girder. I have some pretty cool custom things setup like pressing the big Green Windows Button on the remote to allow me to play/record Comcast OnDemand movies in SageTV. Also, just yesterday, as mentioned above, I setup girder to have conditions so if I'm watching TV in sageTV and press my PowerDVD button to switch to watching a bluray movie.... SageTV will sleep, then start PowerDVD.. when I'm done watching the bluray movie.. it is now smart enough now to switch back to SageTV live TV if it was playing when I switched to PDVD.

I am trying to get away from IR and use a radio remote without the ability to lose these features. I dont know anything about Harmony remotes... just that it supports radio frequencies. Is it possible to execute Windows batch files with it? What software and hardware does the Harmony use to communicate with Windows apps? I can do pretty much everything I want via command line, including control of window focus, window sizes, etc. I dont know of any radio based remote controls for Girder.

Thanks,
Michael

Quote:
Originally Posted by bialio View Post
My setup is close to that - hit "Watch TV" on the remote to fire up Sage. Hit "Play Movie" to fire up PowerDVD. Both are set in Harmony Setup to "power off" when not in use, and the power buttons I have defined really just exit the program / launch the program. It works really well.

And FSE works pretty flawless for me in Sage - very necesarry for the hardware i'm running to do HD without stuttering.

btl.
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  #12  
Old 07-02-2008, 10:05 PM
mikesm mikesm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkanet View Post
BTL I have some questions about the Harmony remote control...

Currently I am using an MCE IR ONLY remote control paired with Girder. I have some pretty cool custom things setup like pressing the big Green Windows Button on the remote to allow me to play/record Comcast OnDemand movies in SageTV. Also, just yesterday, as mentioned above, I setup girder to have conditions so if I'm watching TV in sageTV and press my PowerDVD button to switch to watching a bluray movie.... SageTV will sleep, then start PowerDVD.. when I'm done watching the bluray movie.. it is now smart enough now to switch back to SageTV live TV if it was playing when I switched to PDVD.

I am trying to get away from IR and use a radio remote without the ability to lose these features. I dont know anything about Harmony remotes... just that it supports radio frequencies. Is it possible to execute Windows batch files with it? What software and hardware does the Harmony use to communicate with Windows apps? I can do pretty much everything I want via command line, including control of window focus, window sizes, etc. I dont know of any radio based remote controls for Girder.

Thanks,
Michael
It's pretty easy. Get a harmony RF remote. It comes with a base unit that translates the RF to IR. You can get fancy with these things, but the simplest way is to pick a remote for the harmony to emulate, and then it'll just send IR commands that girder and such can decode to trigger various windows functions just as you do it now. It has more buttons that the normal MCE remote wheich means you can program additional codes for additional functions.
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Client 2: HD200 connected to Denon 3808CI and A3000 SXRD TV
Client 3: Media MVP to 15" Toshiba LCD
Client 4: HD100 connected to Samsung 23" 720P LCD
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  #13  
Old 07-02-2008, 10:23 PM
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mkanet mkanet is offline
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Ohhh cool! So, I can keep all my fancy batch files and girder and just get a harmony remote that send RF to it's RF receiver which retransmits IR to the IR receiver for the PC (USB-UIRT receiver for Girder)!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikesm View Post
It's pretty easy. Get a harmony RF remote. It comes with a base unit that translates the RF to IR. You can get fancy with these things, but the simplest way is to pick a remote for the harmony to emulate, and then it'll just send IR commands that girder and such can decode to trigger various windows functions just as you do it now. It has more buttons that the normal MCE remote wheich means you can program additional codes for additional functions.
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  #14  
Old 07-04-2008, 09:07 AM
mikesm mikesm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkanet View Post
Ohhh cool! So, I can keep all my fancy batch files and girder and just get a harmony remote that send RF to it's RF receiver which retransmits IR to the IR receiver for the PC (USB-UIRT receiver for Girder)!
Exactly! That should work fine.

Also, the harmony remotes use the z-wave protocol for RF. That means it can also control outlets, thermostats, and other z-wave devices...
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  #15  
Old 07-14-2008, 12:58 PM
chrishallowell chrishallowell is offline
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I use EventGhost (Freeware), which has a SageTV plugin.

When I put a Blu-ray disk in or I select a menu item out of SageTV: EventGhost minimizes SageTV, opens/maximizes PowerDVD, and sets the exclusive group to PowerDVD. EventGhost then sends the play command to PowerDVD.

When I take out a Blu-ray disk or press the exit on my remote: EventGhost minimizes PowerDVD, maximizes SageTV, and sets the exclusive group to SageTV.


It works great minus the fact that PowerDVD 8 Ultra takes forever to start playing a movie.
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Old 07-17-2008, 09:12 AM
warwon warwon is offline
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Shurgs, I just deleted the old DVD menu.

Added a new dynamic menu that launches Windvd 9.

Windvd comes up in full screen, loads normally. When I exit it quits windvd then Sagetv goes back to full screen. eASy as pie
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Old 07-17-2008, 09:21 AM
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mkanet mkanet is offline
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Not quite as simple if you have a "DVD" button on your remote control which launches PDVD/WinDVD. But, yeah dynamic menus are easy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by warwon View Post
Shurgs, I just deleted the old DVD menu.

Added a new dynamic menu that launches Windvd 9.

Windvd comes up in full screen, loads normally. When I exit it quits windvd then Sagetv goes back to full screen. eASy as pie
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Old 07-18-2008, 02:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrishallowell View Post
I use EventGhost (Freeware), which has a SageTV plugin.

When I put a Blu-ray disk in or I select a menu item out of SageTV: EventGhost minimizes SageTV, opens/maximizes PowerDVD, and sets the exclusive group to PowerDVD. EventGhost then sends the play command to PowerDVD.

When I take out a Blu-ray disk or press the exit on my remote: EventGhost minimizes PowerDVD, maximizes SageTV, and sets the exclusive group to SageTV.


It works great minus the fact that PowerDVD 8 Ultra takes forever to start playing a movie.
chrishallowell

I just rebuilt my HTPC and included a Blu-ray HD drive and PowerDVD 8 Ultra,I am interested in your PowerDVD section in EventGhost, could you post your EventGhost xml file?

Thanks
Scat
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  #19  
Old 07-20-2008, 07:24 PM
chrishallowell chrishallowell is offline
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Attached is my xml file for EventGhost.
Attached Files
File Type: zip Production.zip (2.7 KB, 251 views)
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  #20  
Old 07-22-2008, 04:08 AM
scat scat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrishallowell View Post
Attached is my xml file for EventGhost.
chrishallowell

Thanks , I will take a look at it

Scat
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