When Computers Die (part 2)


Back to topics list
[post:545#5569]
Stretch

01/24/2012 10:04 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Somehow yesterday When Computers Die (part 1) refuses to post my response—I couldn't get beyond the little alien (or whatever) writing as the words 'loading, please wait' are displayed.

To be honest, I am so technically illiterate that reading your posts is sometimes like reading something that has been written in a foreign language, and then trying to translate it into the non-technical English that I understand. There are lots of words which I don't completely understand, and the message which gets across to me is a vague, diluted version of the precision message which you sent. I am just not a computer person. I had been operating on the assumption that the better a fansub plays on MPC, the better it will play/convert in VirtualDub. And that video with no subtitles was at least better than nothing more than the pins/streams message. So, it would be better if Auto-loading of VSfilter wasn't enabled. But you made it clear that I had gotten things backwards, so I checked auto-load, downloaded Xvid, and attempted a VirtualDub conversion of Mirai Nikki. It reached 30% complete, but froze there and I couldn't get it to start again. I aborted the conversion and started over. This time it went all the way to 100% and the finished product seems perfect—video, audio and subtitles are all present and seem to be in sync. Afterwards, I converted several other episodes of different new Winter series with low Profile Values as well. Several locked up and I had to abort and restart, but all were eventually successful.

When I play the Mirai Nikki fansub (not via AviSynth) I get icons for both audio and video ffdshow, DirectVobSub, plus Haali. When I play it via AviSynth, with Autoload VSfilter enabled, I get nothing more than the pins/threads message and a frozen screen, and therefore no icons appear, not even Haali. When I disable autoload, that's when I get just Haali. (I have re-enabled autoload).

Could it be that the DivX H.264 decoder that I downloaded manually is clashing with one of the decoders in CCCP? Was one of them designed to handle H.264, and would it have done a better job of it?

Edited on 01/24/2012 10:05 AM.

[post:545#5570]
Stretch

01/24/2012 11:34 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Yeah, setting up something like 'Media Foundation' sounds like something Microsoft would do. I have been banging my head against the wall for a week now, and the thought has crossed my mind that perhaps I should look into the possibility of trying to replace Windows 7 with the old Windows XP which I am familiar with. I downloaded Win7DSFilterTweaker 4.7, since it sounded like it might fix my problems and would be easy to uninstall if anything went wrong. There was a long list of different formats (if that's the right word), stuff like H.264, XVID, DIVX, etc. Microsoft was currently the program of choice for all, except XVID, which had no prefered program at all. According to the tip on the installation program I selected ffdshow (there was also an option for 'ffdshow (DXVA)', but I ignored that) as my preferred H.264 decoder. I left the others alone for now. I clicked 'Apply'. But I don't see any improvement in the way MPC plays AviSynth scripted fansubs (or should I be looking somewhere else?). I still get the 'pins' message. If anything, the situation has gotten worse, because now I get the pins message even if I disable Autoload, and previously I could at least play video that way.

[post:545#5571]
Stretch

01/24/2012 11:42 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Well, this might be something: Persona, one of the high Format Profile (was that the name?) shows will play on VirtualDub, with subtitles, the only problem is that I get the 'pink screen' effect momentarily at the beginning.

By the way, I seem to have gotten AllToAVI working!

[post:545#5572]
Devil Doll

01/24/2012 12:15 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

It's a relief to hear that the first and probably most important goal has been achieved: You're again able to convert MKV containers to AVI. That's what counts.
(As for the stability of the process, I have no clue; it might be caused by hardware limitations of your PC, such as not enough main memory. My PC running Vista64 has 4 GB memory and even this can become a bottleneck occasionally; your Windows7 operating system may perhaps be even more hungry for memory, but that's just me guessing.)

Now that you did the conversion once, using the VSFilter auto-loading simplification, you can see the consequences:

  • MKVextractGUI2 indeed needs to extract only the audio now, the subtitle extraction is no longer necessary.
  • Consequently, no need for TextSub in VirtualDub, i. e. no installation and no manual "add filter" plus manually opening the extracted subtitle file every time. All of this is now done automagically by the Haali filter which is invoked by the "DirectShowSource" statement in the AviSynth script.
  • As no more filtering of video streams takes place in VirtualDub now (due to no longer using TextSub), the content of the two windows in VirtualDub will now be identical (both showing the subtitles which have been applied to the video in AviSynth already), so that you may no longer need the right window and can set the left window to a size of your choice.
This procedure will work as long as the MKV container has only one subtitle stream, which is the case for most fansubs but probably not all of them. (In case you run into a MKV container where Haali will not select the subtitle stream of your choice you would have to use TextSub instead, and disable the VSFilter auto-loading for this particular process. That's what I meant with "not fool-proof".)

As for the complexity of our discussion, I'm certainly to blame for not stopping you trying to do many different things in parallel (and because you have the same CCCP with the same configuration as I do, I began speculating about ever more unlikely reasons for your PC working differently from mine, most of which might have sounded confusing for you). Then again, you were so enthusiastically working through the "mencoder" thread that I didn't want to slow you down; also, it was a good test whether the "mencoder" thread gives you the information it was meant to.

As for the H.264 codec: You have seen that you can configure in CCCP which codec is to be used for H.264 (our choice being FFDShow because of its "High 10" capability). A codec that's not enabled there (and there can only be one at a time) should not have any negative effect on the whole procedure.
(I get the "pins" message when no codec is configured to decode H.264, or when I use the DivX H.264 codec for playing "High 10" MKV files; if I use FFDShow instead, everything works smoothly - I can even play Persona 4 in the Windows Media Player then.)

The basic assumption that the better a file is playable on your PC, the better it is convertible, is still valid. Consequently, the next step should be to find out whether you can play a "High 10" MKV video in MPC (and which Tray Icons are visible when you try this), and if not, what would have to be done for getting it working.
I suggest using "[Commie] Persona 4 - 14 [79B0E68D].mkv" as the test object because I have the file on my PC already and it has "High 10@L5.0" which may be close to the cutting edge of current release formats.

Edited on 01/24/2012 12:35 PM.

[post:545#5573]
Devil Doll

01/24/2012 12:46 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

When you try to convert Persona 4 by opening the script with VirtualDub, how many Tray Icons do you get? (I get Haali, DirectVobSub, and ffdshow video decoder using libavcodec for the H.264 stream. And no pink screen.)

Edited on 01/24/2012 12:46 PM.

[post:545#5574]
Stretch

01/24/2012 02:13 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I think I pretty much understood all of that. I really, really want to get things back to where they were before my previous computer broke down, and have given this task priority over everything else for the last week. While waiting for your posts I carry out a trial-and-error sort of computer fixing (being careful not to go to far and create a new variable). Anyway, Persona 4 #14 seems to play without trouble—not even the Pink effect—on MPC when I don't play it via AviSynth. I get icons for both audio and video ffdshow, DirectVobSub, plus Haali. When I do try to play it via AviSynth, I get the Pins message and no icons are displayed. Autoload is enabled and ffdshow has been set as my prefered H.264 decoder. When I open Persona with VirtualDub I get DirectVobSub and Haali icons, but no ffdshow ones.

Just to see if it would work, I carried out a VirtualDub conversion of Persona. The conversion was completed without trouble, but the finished product gives me the Pins message when I try to play it with MPC. And I just realized something—it has an insanely large size: 27.5 GB. In fact, almost all of the episodes which I converted have tremendous sizes, one of them 88.9 GB. Yet last night I burned six or seven of them onto a DVD. I was using the Windows DVD burning system for the first time, and wondered why it took something like two hours to complete the burn. I guess it was because Windows was automatically scaling them down to fit onto a standard 4.7 GB DVD. One episode which started as MKV has a reasonable size (196 MB). This was Amagami SS+ 02 {UTW} {XviD}{F655620F}. What's going on here...? (This was before I downloaded Win7DSFilterTweaker, but the same thing has happened to Persona afterwards).

Edited on 01/24/2012 02:17 PM.

[post:545#5575]
Stretch

01/24/2012 02:29 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Wait a minute, I may have done something wrong...

I had left open the small page from Win7DSFilterTweaker 4.7 on which programs are chosen, in case I wanted to make more changes later. I assumed that clicking 'Apply' would immediately make my codec choices take effect. But once I finally did close that page, I found another, smaller page hidden underneath it. This was the one from which the program as a whole would be closed. So maybe my selection of ffdshow didn't take effect until now, when I have closed the program as a whole.

Indeed, there have been some changes: when I open the Persona script with VirtualDub, I can now see the ffdshow video (but not audio) icon. When I try to open the same script with MPC I get the Pins message but the ffdshow video icon is still there. When I open Persona with MPC without AviSynth, I now get two ffdshow video icons, and one ffdshow audio one. Sorry I missed this until now...

Edited on 01/24/2012 03:22 PM.

[post:545#5576]
Stretch

01/24/2012 03:27 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I notice that the {UTW}Amagami episode has a Format Profile of 'Advanced Simple@5'.

[post:545#5577]
Devil Doll

01/24/2012 03:54 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

File sizes: In VirtualDub, you usually select a codec for compressing the video stream (menu "Video" / "Compression"), preferably "XviD", and set its configuration to a quality of your choice. If you don't do this, by default VirtualDub uses "uncompressed" for the video stream, and yes, that's insanely large. (And what's more, it slows down the "burning" process later.) Try reading these gigantic files with MediaInfo.

I don't exactly know what "burning" means on your PC. On mine, it only means transferring data, not changing the file format in any way. For me, "burning" is a variant of the "Send" operation in your Windows Explorer; I use the same "burn" tool (CDburnerXP, my version is a bit older) for creating video disks and for creating data backups. I am burning files to a simple data disk format (ISO 9660 / Joliet, Level 1; I know my DVD player can read this), instead of letting the burner create some "movie DVD format".
But then you wouldn't have been able to burn these gigantic files to the much smaller DVDs, so apparently your "burner" does some conversion magic without you being aware of it. You see, every single word has to be questioned about its exact meaning. Who knows what this "burner" is capable of... there even might be a toolbox like "AllToAVI" inside. Did you ever try "burning" a MKV file? Did you ever try reading the MediaInfo data of one of these "burned" files on the DVD? It might tell you which video codec your "burner" used (my guess would be "MPEG 2").

As soon as you get the Persona video visible in VirtualDub window, try doing a complete conversion run (compressing the stream to, say, XviD with a bitrate of 1500 or Quantizer 2, thus creating a file of about 250 MB).
Of course you won't see the Icon of the FFDShow audio decoder when using VirtualDub - because we told the AviSynth script not to take the audio data from the MKV container, you'll add the MP3 encoded audio in VirtualDub instead (and this file will be inserted as it is, not decoded by anyone).

If you get Persona 4 converted then I'll ask you to do a little experiment that might make the Win7DSFilterTweaker redundant. Even if this turns out to be working, it is an intrusion into Windows internals and as such only my second choice (that's why I wrote "read and tell me what you think"), and there might be a more "gentle" way of doing this.

Edited on 01/24/2012 04:01 PM.

[post:545#5578]
Devil Doll

01/24/2012 04:41 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

[UTW] Amagami: Which file variant do you have? They're releasing MKV/H.264 early and AVI/XviD a few days later.

Actually it was [UTW] Amagami that got me to install a new CCCP for the "High 10" profile. But since [Kanjouteki] re-codes [UTW] HD release into MP4/H.264 (which is useless for you but perfect for my media box) I haven't downloaded any more UTW episodes.

You say you now see the FFDShow video icon when opening the AviSynth script for Persona 4 in VirtualDub.

  • Do you see the video scenes in the VirtualDub window when you move around in the episode using the scrollbar? (This would be a "go" for trying a conversion.)
  • If not, then move the mouse over the FFDShow video icon and tell me what the tooltip says (i. e. who is decoding H.264 for this video).
Getting two FFDShow video icons when playing Persona 4 without AviSynth sounds wrong. Again, what are the tooltips of these icons telling you?

Edited on 01/24/2012 04:52 PM.

[post:545#5579]
Stretch

01/24/2012 07:19 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I should have known that there wouldn't be any Audio icon when reading from AviSynth. In VirtualDub, moving the scrollbar displays the scenes promptly in both input and output. Even though this was not a problem, I placed the cursor on the ffdshow video codec, which read 'ffdshow video decoder / Input: AVC1 (libavcodec h264) / Output: YV12'. I changed Target Quantizer from 4.00 to 2.00 and began a conversion of Persona. The finished result has a reasonable size of 214 MB, plays fine, and in fact lacks the pink effect, which the bloated 27 GB version had. I took a look at the oversized version and noticed that its bitrate was 161 Mbps. The 'Codec ID' which is listed is '0x0000000', and under 'Codec ID/Info it says 'Basic Windows bitmap format'. I used to use Nero 6.3.1.17 as my DVD burner, but that has 'Known compatibility issues' with Windows 7, so I may need a new one. I could upgrade to Nero 11, but that would cost around $55. Perhaps I should try CDburnerXP?

The Amagami fansub I was using was the {UTW}...{h264-720p}{1037320D}MKV one.

Every now and then I get a 'performance alert' from Norton Security. Right now, as I run a VirtualDub conversion of an episode which refused to convert yesterday (Episode two of 'Another', which has a Format Profile of High 10@5.0) I get a 'High CPU Usage in: VirtualDub' message. I guess this is supposed to alert me if viruses are at work on my computer.

When I open Persona with MPC without AviSynth, this time I only get one ffdshow video codec, which reads the same as before: 'ffdshow video decoder / Input: AVC1 (libavcodec h264) / Output: YV12'.

Edited on 01/24/2012 07:21 PM.

[post:545#5580]
Stretch

01/24/2012 07:34 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I started setting VirtualDub to re-convert the episodes which has wound up oversized. But as I did, this came up: 'Oops, VirtualDub has crashed'. 'Crash details (best guess as to cause) 'An out-of-bounds memory access (access violation) occurred in module 'VSFilter' writing address 0626E000.' This never happened to me on my previous computer. If only I could go back to Windows XP!

Fortunately, the work I had done was automatically saved, so I didn't lose very much. I just pray that VirtualDub will complete all of these conversions without 'crashing' yet again.

Edited on 01/24/2012 07:37 PM.

[post:545#5581]
Devil Doll

01/24/2012 09:00 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

First of all, it looks like Win7DSFilterTweaker saved the day: Your Persona 4 conversion went exactly the way it was supposed to be, with the tool-tip confirming that finally the H.264 video stream was decoded by libavcodec from FFDShow (and thus with correct 10 bit colors). Hooray! Headbanging is over.
I'm surprised though that you don't get FFDShow audio when playing Persona 4 with MPC because in this case the MKV container has an audio stream, and we did tell CCCP to let FFDShow decode AAC audio (that's what Persona 4 uses; check with the MPC internal MediaInfo). Do you hear the audio track when you play the MKV container of Persona 4 with MPC?

I still have that "little experiment" in mind, but not until you say everything runs smoothly.

I never experienced a crash in VSFilter before. But given your previous conversion runs, I suggest you delete those oversized files first. Maybe your harddisk has run full, which might cause any kind of weird exceptional situations? (I wouldn't even have 88,9 GB of free disk space on any of my three hard disks.)
What's more, a hard disk close to being full leads to excessive ↗fragmentation, thus slowing down any disk access (such as copying large files... or reading/writing large video streams).

CPU load: You do remember how to set a lower priority for a running VirtualDub? It might not make that much of a difference though as VirtualDub (or more precisely: The XviD codec which is doing most of the labor) will grab any unused CPU power it can get.
A quick Google search for "Norton high cpu usage" led me to the Norton Community Forum, explaining how you can disable this message (for VirtualDub in particular; you might want to leave it active for other applications) within your Norton configuration.

I did use Nero myself on one of my previous PCs as it was pre-installed there, and liked it back then; when I got a new PC two years ago there was something else pre-installed that I didn't like, and my archived Nero version wouldn't install on Vista64. So I had the choice of either purchasing a more recent Nero or searching the web, and ended up using CDburnerXP. It isn't one of these fancy burning applications that contain audio & video conversion, label editors and whatnot, but for merely burning DVDs it's a reasonable tool, and I prefer "slim" applications over "fat" ones anyway. (And for $55 you might rather consider purchasing another external hard disk, that's something you can't download. ;-)

Edited on 01/24/2012 09:03 PM.

[post:545#5582]
Stretch

01/24/2012 09:29 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Except for playing AviSynth scripts via MPC, all seems to be well. It will neither play audio nor video, just give me the Pins message. After the 'crash' I restarted the VirtualDub conversions and all went well.

I have deleted the oversized conversions. I have made setting lower priorities a common practice.

Norton is only a trial run anyway, which will go away unless I pay to make it permanent.

So, things are going well and I can only be thankful that you did not throw up your hands in exasperasion at some point. It looks like Media Foundation was behind almost everything. I have a good deal of catching up to do regarding Winter anime series. Thanks again, and let me know what sort of little experiment you have in mind.

[post:545#5583]
Devil Doll

01/24/2012 10:36 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

The core issue of all this was: Windows7's "Media Foundation" claimed responsible for decoding H.264 and rejected CCCP's attempt to override this. Therefore we had to "patch" Windows7's "Media Foundation" definition with the Win7DSFilterTweaker. This worked.
But it is a modification of Windows nonetheless. What if you install some official Windows patches from Microsoft that might (as a side effect) reset the "Media Foundation" definition to their original state, thus overriding your patch? You would not even know what happened, and suddenly find yourself in the same situation as before.

CCCP is aware of this problem. Instead of patching Windows, they chose a different path: Lying about the name of the codec. (The ↗FourCC, to be precise.) It's "H264" that Windows7 claims to be responsible for decoding. But what if the video stream had a faked codec name? CCCP would be able to claim responsibility for this name, and use its own H.264 decoder for it. And Windows7 won't ever understand that its restrictive definition was bypassed.

The CCCP module responsible for splitting containers, i. e. Haali, can fake the codec name of a video stream that it just extracted from the container if you say so in the Haali configuration. And as CCCP knows that fake name, it automatically assigns the H.264 decoder that you set in the CCCP configuration for this fake name as well.

That's how I understood this thread in the CCCP forum.

If you want to try this out, it should work like this:

  • Start Win7DSFilterTweaker, and disable the change you made there. (Now H.264 videos with 10-bit colors, i. e. Persona 4, should no longer be playable, at least not with correct colors. This would also prove that it was indeed Win7DSFilterTweaker who made the difference.)
  • Start MPC with any video file. The exact video file doesn't matter; all we need is the Haali Tray Icon, so any MKV file should do (because we configured CCCP to have Haali split MKV containers).
  • Double-click the Haali icon. Select "Options" / "Output" / "Use custom media type for H.264", set the value to "Yes", and "Apply" (hopefully that's the English name of one of the buttons, mine are German...).
  • Try playing Persona 4 with MPC; try converting Persona 4. If any of these fails, undo the Haali setting change, and re-enable the Win7DSFilterTweaker patch, thus returning to your previous state.
If you're interested in another experiment I would show you how to make MKVextractGUI2 obsolete (a new option that we got as result of the "simplification"). It would require having installed VirtualDubMod though, VirtualDub can't do this. Also, it would not be that much of an improvement for the whole procedure but it might solidify your understanding about how the components of our "toolbox" work together. And it would have one advantage: It would work for container formats other than MKV as well, i. e. for any container format that Haali can split.

Edited on 01/24/2012 10:58 PM.

[post:545#5584]
Stretch

01/25/2012 11:44 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I opened Win7DSFilterTweaker, switched my preferred H.264 codec back to Microsoft, and applied & closed the program. Sure enough, I now get the gray screen when I try to open the Persona script in VirtualDub. I opened Persona with MPC (without AviSynth), and I see two Haali, two DirectVobSub, and one each of ffdshow video and audio icons. I then made the changes to Haali which you described. Afterwards, Persona will play of VirtualDub, and I began a conversion. The finished product seems perfect—no pink screen, and everything in sync. This idea looks like a success.

[post:545#5585]
Devil Doll

01/25/2012 02:42 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

The other experiment takes up an idea you had several times during this thread: "Why don't we use the audio stream in AviSynth?" It's not like we couldn't do it, its just that until now we only used the AviSynth script to feed data into the compression tool VirtualDub. But that's not the only possibility.

Note that for the following experiment you would need VirtualDubMod; VirtualDub (albeit being several years newer) is lacking one essential feature.

This experiment runs as follows:

  • Open your AviSynth script (doesn't matter which file it handles) with your text editor (Notepad, probably). In the "DirectShowSource" statement, change "audio=no" into "audio=yes".
  • Open the modified AviSynth script with VirtualDubMod. In comparison to what you've seen before, you should get one additional Tray Icon for FFDShow Audio. Now AviSynth is sending two streams to VirtualDub: uncompressed video (and you've seen how big this was) and uncompressed audio (that's the format you get on commercial music CDs since about 1980).
  • Now there's the thing that VirtualDub can't do. In VirtualDubMod, select "Streams" / "Stream list". You'll see a dialog that displays all audio streams within this AVI container (AviSynth creates AVI containers, remember?).
  • In your case, you will probably see only one audio stream, with the format "↗PCM" (that's "uncompressed"). Select this stream, and click on "Save as "↗WAV" (that's the same as "PCM" only with slightly different header information). Save this stream into file of your choice (such as "persona.wav"). Leave VirtualDubMod open, we will return there in a short while.
  • Open this file (the size will be about 300 MB) with Switch; convert it to MP3 (shrinking the file size by about 92%).
  • In VirtualDubMod, select the PCM audio stream, and click on "disable". (Meaning: "Don't use this stream as part of the AVI container to be created.")
  • In VirtualDubMod, click on "Add", and import the MP3 file that you just created with Switch.
  • From here on, the conversion process works as you know it.
What did we do? We used AviSynth (as "splitter") & VirtualDubMod (as "GUI") to simulate MKVextractGUI2, giving you the audio stream. It is an uncompressed audio stream but this has one advantage: We know that Switch will be able to compress it. (There might be some exotic audio formats that Switch alone can't handle.)
In this experiment we used FFDShow for decoding the audio stream (as configured in CCCP), which means that once again, we would be able to handle every audio format that MPC can play on your PC (because MPC would invoke the same FFDShow as AviSynth does).

Why didn't we do this earlier? Because we needed MKVextractGUI2 to get the subtitle stream (which can't be part of an AVI container, thus AviSynth can't send a subtitle stream to VirtualDub). But with the "simplification" (which uses Haali instead of VirtualDub to automagically apply the subtitles to the video stream, using an auto-loaded VSFilter == TextSub) we could now completely do without MKVextractGUI2. It's just that the conversion process becomes a bit "non-linear", with starting VirtualDubMod early in the process, then doing the audio conversion manually, and finally returning to VirtualDubMod.
(And if VirtualDubMod had a built-in WAV-to-MP3 converter we would even get rid of Switch...)

I am doing other conversions besides anime fansubs, most notably compressing the video material that I can now record from satellite TV with my new receiver box.
Satellite TV uses ↗a different container but inside there are similar streams as in fansubs (usually MPEG2 or H.264 for video, MPEG 1.2 or AAC for audio) so the conversion procedure is almost the same.
But I don't have an equivalent for MKVextractGUI2 for these containers; instead I'm using the method described in this posting which works for everything I can play on my PC, regardless of the container format (".ogm", ".mp4", ".wmv", just to name a few other fansub formats). And this may also explain why I'm still using the ancient VirtualDubMod.

Edited on 01/25/2012 02:50 PM.

[post:545#5586]
Stretch

01/25/2012 04:12 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I found that I had 'VirtualDubMod 1_5_10_2_All_inclusive' stored in my hard drive. I sent it back to Downloads on the new computer. I thought maybe some reinstallation would be necessary, but it seems to work properly. I attempted to open a modified AviSynth script using this program. But nothing happens on the VirtualDubMod screen; I get the message 'error decompressing video frame 0: the source image format is not acceptable. (error code -2)'. I get no ffdshow audio icons at all, just the video one (and two Haali ones).

[post:545#5587]
Devil Doll

01/25/2012 06:10 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Hm... let's exclude potential culprits.

What happens when you open the modified script with VirtualDub? (You should be able to do this, and do a normal conversion; you would just get an unnecessary additional audio stream and a much bigger output file.)

[post:545#5588]
Stretch

01/25/2012 06:24 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

When I open the 'yes' script with VirtualDub, the first frame appears, but it will not play. I get the same icons as above. There's a message 'Autoloaded 0 filter(s). (1 failed). Check the log for details'. I can scroll forward and display other frames.

Edited on 01/25/2012 07:24 PM.

[post:545#5589]
Devil Doll

01/25/2012 08:23 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

This looks weird. You get the FFDShow audio icon? Its tooltip should tell you what kind of audio stream has been sent by AviSynth. It should be an uncompressed PCM stream. Also, the video icon should report an uncompressed video stream.

"Autoloaded filters" in VirtualDub are those that reside in the "plugins" folder. Sounds like a relict from the attempt to install "TextSub" there, i. e. "vsfilter.vdf".

Edited on 01/25/2012 09:41 PM.

[post:545#5590]
Stretch

01/26/2012 09:40 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I only get the ffdshow video icon, not the audio one. I can scroll forward to display any frame I like, but VirtualDub will not play the episode.

[post:545#5591]
Devil Doll

01/26/2012 12:04 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I'm not sure what you mean with "play", as VirtualDub is no media player. If you can scroll the scenes then the video stream appears to be okay at least.

I did open an AviSynth script with "audio=yes" right now, and in the Task Bar I saw... three Tray Icons (Haali, DirectVobSub, FFDShow video). But next to these is a "<<" double arrow, indicating that there are more invisible tray icons due to a lack of space on the screen; this happens occasionally when many applications are running in parallel. I clicked on this double arrow, and - voila: There it was, the missing audio icon. Do you get this double arrow as well?

But what actually counts is whether you see the PCM stream in the "stream list" dialog of VirtualDubMod, nothing else. It you see it there then you can export it as WAV file, and then convert it with Switch.

Edited on 01/26/2012 01:00 PM.

[post:545#5592]
Stretch

01/26/2012 06:57 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I don't see any double arrow icon, and there is room to display nine icons but there are only eight shown, so it doesn't seem to have run out of space. What I meant by 'play' was clicking on the '{input playback} starts playback of the input file' button. Where would the Stream List be displayed? I don't see a mention of it anywhere in VirtualDub. Is it a VirtualDubMod feature?

There's no need for me to have extracted an audio stream from this particular fansub script with MKVextractGUI2, is there? By the way, it appears that the computer will not allow me to open MKVextractGUI2 anymore. The desktop icon has disappeared, and when I try to open it from C:/Program Files, it appears for just a fraction of a second and then is gone.

[post:545#5593]
Devil Doll

01/26/2012 07:26 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Yes, the audio stream list is exactly the feature that VirtualDub doesn't have but VirtualDubMod has, as I wrote above. (I asked you to open the AviSynth script with VirtualDub only to see whether you would then get the audio icon.)

Currently there is still a need to extract an audio stream from a MKV container with MKVextractGUI2:

  • The "simplification" made extracting subtitles with MKVextractGUI2 obsolete (because 1. Haali extracts the video and the subtitles, 2. FFDShow uncompresses the video stream, 3. the auto-loaded VSFilter now writes the subtitles over the video frames, and 4. the result is sent to the AviSynth script, visible for you in VirtualDub).
  • The current experiment tries extracting an audio stream via the AviSynth / VirtualDubMod combo instead of using MKVextractGUI2 for this purpose as you did until now.
  • Together these two experiments would make MKVextractGUI2 obsolete. The idea of having this choice between either using MKVextractGUI2 or these two modifications was the reason for these experiments.
But until we get this working: Are you still able to use "open with" on some MKV container, then selecting "MKVextractGUI2" from the context menu? (That's what I'm doing, I rarely ever start a program all by itself.)

Edited on 01/26/2012 10:32 PM.

[post:545#5594]
Stretch

01/27/2012 10:10 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Sorry about that. When I open the 'yes' script for Steins;Gate 24 (of which I have not extracted the streams) with VirtualDubMod, no less than 11 icons are displayed, including two for ffdshow video, but none for audio. Nothing appears on the VirtualDubMod screen. The Stream List ('Available Streams') shows: 'Source: input AVI file / Desc AVI audio stream 1 {tag 0x0001 Microsoft PCM format}

The audio stream is in Microsoft format? Maybe Media Foundation is still at work, and this is why we never get an ffdshow audio icon.

Here's another foolish thing I have been doing: I was trying to open the AviSynth scripts with MKVextractGUI2, not the fansub containers themselves. The conversion process had become so commonplace and so much of a habit that I used to carry it out without thinking at all, and now that things were being done in a different way I became confused. I guess this is what caused the computer to remove my desktop shortcut. But I have restored it now, and it seems to work normally. The last two weeks have drained me of brainpower.

Edited on 01/27/2012 10:40 AM.

[post:545#5595]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 10:39 AM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

So what's now the content of the AviSynth script looking like when you open the script with VirtualDubMod? Do you get the audio stream?

[post:545#5596]
Stretch

01/27/2012 10:42 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

See above.

[post:545#5597]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 02:34 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Ignore the "Microsoft" label: "PCM" is exactly what we want. This is "uncompressed"; audio has already been decompressed by FFDShow at this stage (the MKV file did certainly not contain PCM audio). Everything is on the right track.

  • Select the PCM stream, click on "Disable"; click on "Save WAV", choose a name such as "steins.wav". (Size will be about 300 MB, export will take 5-10 seconds.)
  • Compress "steins.wav" to "steins.mp3" with Switch. (You may try playing the stream in Switch to check if it sounds okay.)
  • Back in VirtualDubMod's "Available streams" dialog, click on "Add", select "steins.mp3" to be imported into VirtualDubMod. (You will now see two audio streams: A disabled PCM stream and an enabled MP3 stream. Only the enabled one(s) will be part of the AVI container to be created.)
Then proceed with compressing the video.

Edited on 01/27/2012 02:44 PM.

[post:545#5598]
Stretch

01/27/2012 02:52 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I did everything you listed regarding the audio stream. The problem is that I can't proceed with the conversion to AVI(not 'compression', right?) because VirtualDubMod will not display even frame one of the episode. I get 'Error decompressing video frame 0: the source image format is not acceptable (error code -2)'. If I click on 'Input Playback' (or just 'play', as I would call it) I get 'The decompression codec cannot decompress to an RGB format. This is very unusual. Check that any “Force YUY2” options are not enabled in the codec's properties'.

[post:545#5599]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 03:04 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

In our case, "conversion" (to create an AVI container) includes "compression" (of the video stream to XviD; you've seen how big it would become when uncompressed).

Hm, so you can extract the audio but can't display the video scenes in VirtualDubMod? This is peculiar. Do you see the video scenes of this episode when you open the AviSynth script in VirtualDub? (There's no problem when opening the same script with VirtualDub and VirtualDubMod simultaneously, they're both only reading it. Usually one should avoid running too many programs in parallel though.)

If this made a difference, then you could

  • extract the audio stream in VirtualDubMod,
  • do the normal video compression (without audio) in VirtualDub, and
  • open the "mute" AVI video in VirtualDubMod plus "add" the MP3 stream for finally "merging" them together.
But this would feel even more cumbersome for you, I guess.

Edited on 01/27/2012 03:08 PM.

[post:545#5600]
Stretch

01/27/2012 03:08 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

In VirtualDub, frame one is displayed, and I can scroll forward (or backward) to any frame, but it will not 'play'. Clicking on 'Input Playback' gives me the same message as with VirtualDubMod: 'The decompression codec cannot decompress to an RGB format. This is very unusual. Check that any “Force YUY2” options are not enabled in the codec's properties'.

Edited on 01/27/2012 03:11 PM.

[post:545#5601]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 03:31 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Are you still able to play this video in MPC? Does "Steins;Gate" use the same video codec etc. as "Persona 4" does? (MediaInfo?)

When you play that video in MPC, you should get the red FFDShow video icon. Double-clicking on this icon opens the FFDShow video decoder configuration dialog. On the left side, scroll down and select "Output"; that's where you could unselect a check-box for "YUY2" in case it is set on your PC (it is checked on my PC but I don't seem to have problems with it, apparently I get "YV12" anyway for most every video I try; this is the first time that I delve so deep into the internals of a decoder, I never expected there to be a problem).

Edited on 01/27/2012 04:10 PM.

[post:545#5602]
Stretch

01/27/2012 04:11 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

The unscripted Fansub of Steins still plays normally. Its video codec ID is V_MPEG4/ISO/AVC.

Here's something: I took a look at the hidden icons, and found no less than three ffdshow video ones, one audio one, and five Haali ones. I realized that this was likely because I hadn't shut down either VirtualDub or VirtualDubMod (in case you asked me to do anything more with them). Once I did, only the single ffdshow video and audio icons remain. So perhaps duplicate icons are because one is displayed for each program currently employing it. The video one reads 'Input: CCV1 (libavcodec h264) / Output YV12'.

The video codec ID of Persona is the same as Steins: V_MPEG4/ISO/AVC.

[post:545#5603]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 04:18 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

So apparently you have to retry the encoding attempt without anything else in parallel. At least I see no reason for anyone to complain about "YUY2" when FFDShow is decoding the video stream into the "YV12" color space instead, as the tool-tip indicates.

Edited on 01/27/2012 04:19 PM.

[post:545#5604]
Stretch

01/27/2012 04:47 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Well, I shut down everything but VirtualDubMod, opened the 'yes' script of Steins, replaced the audio stream with the MP3 version, and it looked like things were going right because one each of ffdshow audio and video icons appeared. But again, not even frame one of the video appears on the VirtualDubMod screen.

[post:545#5605]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 06:12 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I'm not seeing enough to have an idea what's going on here, mostly because I have no clue what you already successfully did with Steins;Gate. Are you able to convert this episode with the old method, ignoring the current experiment?

[post:545#5606]
Stretch

01/27/2012 07:47 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I've got a problem. For awhile I had AllToAVI working here, and it would allow me to send my converted fansubs to My Documents (I renamed the page that was originally known as 'Documents' as 'My Documents', to match the title it had on my old computer). For some reason, AlltoAVI now sends converted fansubs to a folder called 'Documents' and won't let me specify 'My Documents'. I tracked this folder down, but somehow, it is empty—it should have at least two converted fansubs. I did a 'Search Programs and Files' and could find a listing for the converted fansubs which ought to be there, but clicking on them didn't take me to them, instead it automatically played them with Windows Media Player. I could play them with Windows, but couldn't do anything else.

I found that somehow, a page which was nearly identical to My Documents was created—it has exactly the same contents, the only difference is that one is represented by a pale yellow folder icon while the other is represented by a white stack of paper icon. I fooled around with renaming them, so they wound up with addresses of 'C:UsersRonDocuments' and 'Libraries/My Documents'. The blank page has an address of C:UsersDefaultDocuments. I wonder if the computer has become confused and automatically creates this 'default' file because it can't tell the other two apart. I tried deleting all but one of the files ('Documents', with full content), but AllToAVI still wants to send converted fansubs to C:/Users/Ron/Documents--wherever that is is not where I want them. I try to track it down, and there is no such folder at the address where it should be. And I've got the same folder under two different names again! One should be a subdivision of the other, and I would delete it, but it isn't where it should be. And when I click on 'My Documents' in the menu (it shouldn't be there, because there is no 'My Documents' anymore), I am sent to 'Documents', not 'My Documents'.

So, somehow folder identification has become totally screwed up here and I am at a loss to figure out how to fix it. I really do not like Windows 7!

Edited on 01/27/2012 08:01 PM.

[post:545#5607]
Stretch

01/27/2012 08:27 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Goddamn this computer! I did a restart, and managed to delete 'Documents2'--It was too large to send to recycle, so I authorized permanently deleting it. And somehow it took the contents of 'Documents' as well! Oh my God--it even deleted everything from my UTorrent containing folder! How is this possible!?

[post:545#5608]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 09:16 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I have certainly written this a dozen times before. The problem with those fancy graphic user interfaces is that they make people not understand what's actually going on below the surface, and instead trust in this GUI; unfortunately, trust must be earned, not bought.

Now AllToAVI and Windows7 is a combination of which I have neither. But one of the things that I would try to find out if I had eyes to look onto your PC screen is whether "My Documents" and "Documents" are perhaps the same thing - or if they aren't, whether you can make them be the same thing.
There is a concept named "↗Symbolic link" on modern operating systems, allowing to create an object that's just a reference to another object, meaning that "both" have the same content. Windows Vista already makes use of this in lots of folders, that's why I wouldn't be surprised if it were the case here as well.

Modern operating systems (including the Windows versions of recent years) support a concept of ↗User Identifications on computers for the purpose of specifying rights and ownerships to these users, such as the right to format your harddisk (and delete all data on it), or the ownership over a file (so that other users may not delete, perhaps not even read it). Now you may ask why you on your PC, being the only user, has to bother with this system as there's no one else around. First of all, the latter may not be true. Computer virus, ever heard of it? When you get one, and install it under your privileges, it may be able to delete your files but perhaps not the complete Windows installation.
Why am I telling all this? Because there are "symbolic folders" such as "My Documents" that have to be assigned to "real folders" such as C:\Users\Ron\Documents (with "Ron" apparently being your userid, right?). And this is done by embedding the real folder which contains your userid into your environment under a name that's the same one for every Windows user. Thus "My Documents" is something that should be the same on many other PCs whereas these don't have a userid "ron".
So the message is: It's not even easy to find out whether these two folders are the same or not (except for putting a file into one of them and then checking whether it is visible in the other folder as well), as the idea of a link is that you shouldn't even be aware it's not the real deal. The consequence of this, unfortunately, is that when searching your complete harddisk you will end up finding "duplicates" of some of your files that are in fact the same physical location on the harddisk, just described via a different path name. And to make things even more confusing: Whereas folders are a strictly hierarchical structure (and as such cannot contain different names for the same object), links can point to anything, including folders on different levels. Even the parent folder, thus causing infinite loops of path names.
Me, I am using real path names wherever I can because I want to see what's real. That's why I never use "My Document" and the like as they are links to anything that Windows attempts to hide from my eyes, and that's not making things easier when something is going wrong.
The disadvantage of real path names is that they're ugly. "C:\Users\Ron\Documents" requires you to know this exact folder name, and on every other PC you would have to learn this PC's real path names once again. But how many PCs are you going to work on?

You may now understand a bit better why I'm still using C:\temp as my folder for temporary data. I did so on every PC in the last 20 years, and I know that I can create this directory on every new Windows PC regardless what ever new Windows versions are trying to invent. The price I have to pay is that I would have to know how to tell AllToAVI to store files into C:\temp, meaning I have to read the configuration of every program I am using. Symbolic defaults spare you from this - at the price of a transparency deficit.
In your Windows Explorer, there's probably a top entry "Desktop"; within this "folder" (which is actually a link, my guess would be C:\Users\Ron\Desktop as the real location, at least this may be the location of the icons stored on your desktop) there should be an entry "Computer". This last entry is the "real world" of path and folder names, and I am ignoring anything else on my PC.

Nothing of this posting may be immediately helpful for you; all I can give you right now is the understanding of potential ambiguity of path names, and the consequences for you as user. But actually there might be the reason for your AllToAVI issue. Just imagine that AllToAVI tries to store its output into "Documents" by default (I don't have its configuration here so I don't know).
Now you destroyed the pathname (not the content!) of "Documents" by renaming it to "My Documents", and apparently someone tried to create that missing directory once again and you now have two real directories which you don't want. Instead of renaming "Documents", the solution in your case would have been to create a symbolic link that points to "Documents", and name this link "My Documents", thus giving this folder a second name, one that you are used to. That's the upside of having links: You can create your own "name space" of known folder names regardless of what the Windows version has in reality - provided you know how to do it, and how to tell apart real from symbolic names. Renaming alone doesn't suffice because there are applications that ask Windows about existing standard folder names, and then know that on your PC this standard name is "Documents", not "My Documents"; perhaps AllToAVI is one of these?
Then again, I have no clue whether you can create a symbolic link for a name that's not real (i. e. not beginning with a drive letter followed by ":\") - I don't know where this name would have to be created within the real name space on your hard disk. For real names, using symbolic links isn't that different from creating folders.

This was a lot of boring stuff. But before giving you suggestions how to change your folder name structure I would like to have some feedback first. Do you feel like doing experiments in this symbolic links department? The easy solution would be to give up the idea of using "My Documents", and live with "Documents" instead. One warning beforehand: Creating links is done in the Windows Explorer via the context menu, but this menu's entries are in the language of the Windows installation. So in order to see the same menu entries I would have to change the system language of my Windows installation to English...

Edited on 01/27/2012 09:34 PM.

[post:545#5609]
Stretch

01/27/2012 09:46 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I will need to reread this a couple of times to grasp it all, but I will gladly perform any experiment that might prevent something like this from happening again. This computer scares me—already, a page has appeared entitled 'Documents2' (I deleted that!) as a subdivision of 'Documents'. I lose my precious data, and it's all for nothing--the folders are as screwed up as ever. Actually, I am very tempted to go back to Windows XP. I knew where I was with that system, this one is overcomplicated and confusing. First Media Foundation, now Symbolic Links--what next?

Edited on 01/27/2012 11:33 PM.

[post:545#5610]
Devil Doll

01/27/2012 11:38 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

According to ↗Wikipedia, mainstream support for Windows XP ceased in 2009 already, and extended support will last until 2014. So this won't be a solution for the long run. Creating your own folder space outside of what Microsoft considers "theirs" might be a safer bet.

Symbolic links aren't a new thing; "My Documents" relied on the same mechanism already. It's just that you were never aware of them, and now renaming one of the "sacred" objects within Windows you're painfully getting into touch with the gory details under the glittering skin of Windows. Deleting one object and finding that "another" object has vanished as well shows that one must have been a link to the other.

The problem with creating your own folder space is that "real path names" are considered a stepchild in the Windows Explorer (which gladly offers you its own abstract names such as "Desktop" or "Documents" but makes it bothersome to navigate to "C:\temp"). This is one of the many reasons why I rarely ever use this Windows explorer; I use some Shareware application instead, and for more than 10 years already.

But before considering a software purchase, let's try something simpler. You're probably using the Windows Explorers in a display mode where you see icons for every file. With the right mouse button, click inside the Explorer window but not on any file; you'll get the Explorer's context menu. There, select the first entry (whose name will be something like "display" or "view"), and within the opening submenu, "details". The window content will now become a list of entries with one line per entry and several columns with various information about each entry. If you right-click on the line of column headers, the set of visible columns is configurable; you can set this view according to your own requirements. Even Windows allows some transparency, you just have to find it.

The "too large" message was a severe warning: "You're about to do something dangerous with an extremely large amount of data - are you really sure?" Overriding this security protection warning was what caused your loss of data.

The real location of your "Documents" folder is most likely C:\users\ron\Documents. Replacing "ron" by my own userid, I just tried to rename my "Documents" folder to "My Documents" in order to reproduce what you did before. Interestingly, Windows denied this operation, even though my userid has administration rights. So renaming "Documents" to "My Documents" should not have been possible on your PC.

Edited on 01/28/2012 10:05 AM.

[post:545#5611]
Stretch

01/28/2012 11:08 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Well, today there's no 'Documents2' listed, and even if I go looking for it in 'search programs and files' I get 'no items match your search'. So I guess the computer has put things in order again. Sort of; 'Documents' has two subdivisions, one is 'Public Documents' and one is just plain 'Documents', which is identical to the original. Allowing one file to go by two names just seemed so illogical yesterday that the possibility never occurred to me. I always thought that the last thing a computer would want would be something like that happening. Having calmed down somewhat, I guess trying to change my operating system would be a monstrous task. If you have any ideas for an 'experiment' that might make things easier to use, I'm willing.

I'm trying to figure out why the completed conversions from AllToAVI can't be sent to the place where I want them, 'Documents'. Apparently, if I do nothing they go by default to some netherworld where they can only be played on Windows Media Player. It was implied that they might wind up in 'My Music' somehow, but they aren't listed there. If I click on 'Send To', then the closest thing to Documents which I can select is 'Libraries'--'Documents' is one of four libraries, if I understand correctly. But even so, I need to confirm my selection by clicking 'OK', and apparently this is not available—the OK box is not highlighted, like 'Cancel' which is alongside it. I'm guessing that since there are two destinations known as 'Documents', AllToAVI doesn't know what to do and somehow they get sent to Windows Media Player by default. Well, VirtualDub has gotten so much easier that there may not be all that much of a need for AllToAVI anyway.

Getting back to the original topic, I found Steins again, in my Iomega hard drive, and sent it back to 'Documents'. I carried out a conversion, using the 'no' script. I only extracted Audio. The end result is perfectly satisfactory.

Edited on 01/28/2012 12:23 PM.

[post:545#5612]
Devil Doll

01/28/2012 12:24 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

How do you address your Iomega harddrive? Are you using a drive letter, such as "E:\" or the like? If you're used to this then you shouldn't be afraid of using drive letters for your internal harddisk as well, and just ignore the "Documents" section completely.

The one thing that actually went very wrong is that you tried to rename a "sacred" folder name, and were not prevented from doing this by Windows (which bewilders me because I am denied this operation). So the most simple thing to do with Windows 7 might be to accept their naming structure and bear with "Documents" being their choice. After all, you don't have myriads of script files with hard-coded path names that you would need to edit accordingly! (Preventing such a scenario is one advantage of links.)

As for "Documents", remember that a folder name is only unique within it's location. So you may have folders such as "C:\ron\Documents", "C:\Documents", and even "C:\ron\Documents\Documents\Documents" at the same time. That "destination" you mentioned is apparently a folder "Documents" within something we don't see, giving the mysterious "Libraries" folder some content substructure ("Documents" are meant to be text, as opposed to music or videos), allowing you to find a particular file easier by remembering its file type. This is a good idea in general - I'm doing exactly the same thing, sorting files by their type of use for me instead of putting everything and then some within one folder. It's just that I don't know how much collateral damage you caused by renaming "Documents" to "My Documents". And as I don't seem to have this "Libraries" concept in Windows Vista already I have no idea where they reside, and where the apparently missing folder would have to be created.

As for the "netherworld": If you can double-click these files then you must also be able to select them and open their context menu with the right mouse. There must be an entry named "attributes" or something like this, and within this section you should find the complete real file name of this video (which includes its file name extension).

As for changing your operating system, this depends. How many hard disks do you have inside your PC, and how many ↗partitions are they formatted to? Or let me ask in a different way: In your Windows Explorer, when you go to "Computer", there's a list of drive letters, describing all your storage devices (internal disk as well as external Iomega disk). How many letters are assigned to the internal disk(s)? Every drive letter may have a copy of a bootable operating system. So if, say, your internal disk were partitioned into the drive letters "C:\" and "D:\" (which happens to be the case with mine) then you would be able have Windows7 installed on drive "C:\", and Windows XP installed on drive "D:\", and decide which operating system to use when booting the PC. This would have the advantage that you wouldn't lose Windows 7; you could take your time for installing and configuring Windows XY, knowing that you have a fallback strategy of booting the PC with Windows 7 if necessary.
WARNING: Partitioning a harddisk is a critical operation; this could delete everything on your disk if you make a mistake, including your Windows 7 installation, thus making the PC un-bootable and requiring a new Windows installation from your Windows system DVD (provided you have one - my PC came without such a disk). I would not advise you to do this on your own; this would be a task for your local PC support. But if you already have more than one drive letter then installing Windows XP in parallel to Windows 7 might in fact be an idea to get you where you want to be for the time being. And apparently Microsoft will allow their users to voluntarily downgrade their Windows license to Windows XP until 2020, giving you another 8 years for adapting to modern Windows versions.

[post:545#5613]
Stretch

01/28/2012 02:51 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

To access the hard drive, I just switch it on and an option appears on the screen after a few seconds to open it up and view files. If it's already running I generally click on 'Computer' in the menu, which takes me to 'Hard Disk Drives (3)', one of which is Iomega, which I click on.

There's no longer anything named 'My Documents' here; I switched the name back to its original form in hope that that would fix the problem, but it hasn't. Maybe one of the two places named 'Documents' has a 'sacred' name, while the other is a symbolic link?

I swear I have not gone insane. But somehow the AllToAVI converted fansubs seemed to be vanishing somewhere within the computer. I assumed that since the place where the program said it was sending them ended with 'Documents', then the finished product ought to appear on that page (but they didn't). To make a long story short, on my previous computer AllToAVI used to automatically place the finished conversions in a folder called 'Converted' within 'My Documents'. If no folder by that name currently existed, it would automatically create one. That wasn't happening anymore. But yesterday I created a file named 'Converted', as a place to send VirtualDub conversions. Today I tried to track down every mention of the missing fansub in 'Search Programs and Files' by right-clicking on each of them and examining its ''Properties'--especially, its location. And, voila, the AllToAVI conversion is sitting in Converted! I swear I did not tell it to go there, it just did. I ran another fansub through AllToAVI, and likewise, it also wound up there.

The idea of operating both Windows 7 and Windows XP is intriguing. I think I have only two internal disks: Windows7_OS(C:), and Lenovo_Recovery (Q:). As I mentioned above, Iomega is listed in the same category, 'Hard Disk Drives'. But it looks like Windows 7 is in charge of the C: files, and if it were removed from there it wouldn't exist anywhere else.

[post:545#5614]
Devil Doll

01/28/2012 04:00 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

That's what I mean: Instead of using "virtual names" such as "My Documents", you could treat your internal hard disk "C:\" the exact same way you're already treating your external Iomega hard disk (whose drive letter you didn't mention), i. e. going via the "Computer" path. You would then ignore the "shortcuts" that names like "Documents" offer you.

In general, I was never a fan of merging programs and data files:

  • Data files are meant to be created, used, and deleted; they use large amounts of space on the storage volume.
  • Programs are meant to be installed, rarely ever modified, and not manually deleted (most programs come with their own "uninstall" tool); they use relatively small amounts of space on the storage volume.
Thus programs should not be installed in a data directory like "Documents"; deleting them accidentally would leave the relics of them having been installed inside of Windows internal data (the registry, most notably).
In some of my previous postings I even went to far as to suggest you use your internal hard disk for programs only, and the Iomega disk for data. This would be slower than converting to your internal disk, so the middle course might be to use the "Converted" folder (or "C:\temp" in my case) for temporary data only, and move any completed results to the Iomega disk as soon as possible, in order to restrict any potential damage on the internal disk to the absolute minimum. If your "temporary" directory gets nuked you should lose only the data from the previous week or so. And it's much easier to purchase an additional external hard disk than to get an additional internal hard disk installed by your local dealer.

Is "Converted" a file or a folder? (A file can't contain files, a folder can contain both files and folders.)

"Windows7_OS" and "Lenovo_Recovery" may be two hard disks but my guess would be they're two partitions on the same hard disk, a large one for Windows and a small one for some system specific backup data. Whoever installed this PC apparently has invested some thought into these partitions, thus I would not suggest abusing "Lenovo_Recovery" for installing Windows XP onto it (and not knowing the size of these partitions, this may or may not be possible).
So if you want to follow the "↗Multi boot" idea of having several operating systems available in parallel, someone would have to re-partition your internal hard disk, i. e. shrink the size of "Windows7_OS" by about 50-100 GB and create a new partition "WindowsXP_OS" from this now unused disk space.
Theoretically, even your Iomega disk is a hard disk as well, and thus might contain an Windows XP installation; but as it is an external hard disk I'm not sure whether you can boot from it. These are system/hardware related issues, and your local PC support would know a lot more about these than I do. A phone call might give you additional insights already.

As for what hard disks you actually have: This opens the Device Manager on your PC. (This is hardware internals, don't change anything, just read.) The "drives" listed there are hardware devices, not partitions. If you select your (probably only) internal hard disk, the properties section should tell you which "volumes" are represented by this hard disk, i. e. which partitions it has.

One caveat about the "Multi boot" idea: Your two Windows variants would create their individual userids. So while in theory both Windows variants would be able to work with the same files and write into the same directories, in practice you would create a folder under Windows XP and your userid would be the owner of this folder; then booting Windows 7 might result in your Windows 7 userid being denied access to the folder you created under Windows XP (regardless whether this folder resides on the internal disk or even on the Iomega disk!). This can be bypassed by manually setting the properties of said folders appropriately, it's just that you should be aware than "ron" from Windows 7 and "ron" from Windows XP will most likely be different users with different privileges, even on the same PC; and it may take some time to configure all folders in a way that they're usable for both systems.

[post:545#5615]
Stretch

01/28/2012 04:52 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Let me see if I'm understanding this: Instead of just opening the menu and clicking on 'Documents', I should make a habit of taking the route of Computer / Windows 7_OS (C:) / Users / etc, and create a C:Temp page somewhere to do my conversion work, instead of using 'Documents'? And avoid 'Documents' as much as possible?

'Converted' is a folder within 'Documents' which contains completed conversions waiting to be burned onto a DVD.

I didn't lose any programs when 'Documents' was deleted; just a week's worth of downloading and converting.

Iomega is identified by the letter 'D'. It seems that my practice has been the opposite of yours, in that I do the temporary work within the main computer, and use Iomega to store converted episodes for long periods of time (like until I have all the episodes in a series, at which point I burn them all onto a DVD).

Edited on 01/28/2012 04:53 PM.

[post:545#5616]
Devil Doll

01/28/2012 07:03 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Yes, that's what I meant - going through the "computer" route every time. because that's where the "real names" are.
By the way, the file manager I am using instead of the Windows Explorer makes all of these "drive letters" permanently visible in its top menu level, and can even make any number of arbitrary folders (such as "C:\temp" or "D:\anime") permanently visible there, thus making these folders as easy to find as "My Documents".

Now add to this that there's a way of creating drive letters as equivalents of folder names (meaning: I can easily define that "A:" is the same as "C:\ron\My Documents\anime"), and you'll see that I ended up working with these drive letters for most of my data. On my PC there are no less than 21 drive letters in use, with "A:\" being "Anime", "I:\" being "Internet stuff", "M:\" being "Music" and so on. I'm not using the mechanism of symbolic links for this but the way of thinking is the same. (The mechanism for this that I am using is so old that it goes back to the age of DOS but it's still working in Windows Vista.)
Many readers will consider it weird to artificially create what "My Documents" and "My Music" are meant for in the Windows versions of our days; it's just that I know that my names won't change because I am the one who defines them. And you've seen what it gives you when trying to rename their folders...

No, your practice isn't the opposite of mine. I was just not sure how mixed the content inside of your "Documents" directory is as you sounded like having installed programs there (which I wouldn't do, that's what I have "C:\software" for). I am doing all the temporary stuff on the main computer for performance's sake, and use the slower external devices (be that the external disk or even a DVD) for data that I don't need to have permanently available.
My point was that the programs are only useful on the internal disk (because they have to be executed by the PC) whereas the video files may be useful on the external disk (which I can connect to my TV satellite receiver, for example). That's why I was looking for ways of making this separation as plausible as possible for you. And your method of keeping most of the data on the Iomega disk has already paid you a dividend when your previous PC died.

Just as an additional caveat about the partitioning: ↗Wikipedia explains how the partitioning tables between Windows XP and Windows Vista are incompatible so that the official Microsoft tools for Windows XP would destroy partition data created under Windows Vista and delete every file on these volumes without any warning.
Now I don't know how similar Windows 7 is to Windows Vista; I just want to repeat that creating such a multi-boot environment should be done by someone who knows all involved Windows version pretty well; once this is done you won't have to bother about partitioning and wouldn't be in danger of destroying anything. Think of it like adding a hybrid engine to your already existing car - you would prefer this to be done by a pro, right?

[post:545#5617]
Stretch

01/28/2012 07:49 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I have created a folder called 'Anime' on the Windows7 OS (C:) page, alongside categories like 'Program Files' and 'Users'. I frankly never knew you could do that; I thought a person would only be allowed to make changes like this on pages that were of much lower priority. Now, I need to do a test to see if it is just as easy to send the results of VirtualDub and AllToAVI conversions to this new location.

I installed CDburnerXP here. All went well until I clicked 'burn' and got 'Cannot continue with the burning process because no burning device was detected'. The problem might be that, according to the CDburnerXP website, the Drive Letter assignment needs to be between 'D' and 'Z'. They said to 'make sure' this was so. A link was provided to a Microsoft page on how to change letter assignments, but it was for Windows XP (Come to think of it, maybe CdburnerXP was specifically designed for Windows XP). I was reluctant to do this without asking for your opinion. I went looking and found 'Free, Easy CD Burner' which works with Windows 7.

Edited on 01/28/2012 07:54 PM.

[post:545#5618]
Devil Doll

01/28/2012 09:48 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Every folder and every file has a definition which users have which rights for accessing this object; this includes even the folder "C:\". The context menu of any folder contains a tab where these rights are visible and can be changed. (That's what you would have to do on a dual boot system in order to allow both your Windows 7 userid and your Windows XP userid to get write access to the same folder albeit only one of these two can be the folder's owner.)
Note that something like "Documents", implicitly being "C:\Users\Ron\Documents", relies on the existence of the user "Ron" - but when you boot Windows XP instead of Windows 7 then you probably don't have this "Ron" user there (albeit it might be possible to create two "Ron" users in both Windows systems with the same internal numeric code, thus being identical on the file ownership level... this is one of the things you should discuss with the person who does the dual-boot setup for you), and thus don't see the "Documents" directory. In a dual boot system, using "system independent" folder names such as "C:\Anime" or "C:\Convert" would be almost essential.

When you listed your drive letters I was already wondering why your DVD burner's drive letter was not between the internal disk C:\ and the external disk D:\ because usually Windows assigns the internal drive letters during the boot routine and remaining drive letters according to the device type (such as reserving a couple of letters for the USB slots - my USB devices, hard disk resp. USB stick, get the letters "J:\" resp. "K:\" depending on which one I connect first).

The support forum for CDburnerXP says the program should work on Windows 7, albeit there may be certain Windows7 related issues, and the DVD drive must be supported; the latter would be for you to verify (but read the last paragraph before doing this).
Drive letters in Windows up to Vista are assigned automagically; I didn't even know Windows7 allows you to influence this procedure. Microsoft's guide for changing drive letters is here; it works slightly differently in Vista so I can't reproduce the exact sequence on my PC.
The page says that you cannot change the drive letter of a boot partition (meaning you can't change the drive letter of the "C:\" hard disk in your case, not even inadvertently) but it should work for the DVD drive. And whoever installed your PC must have used this procedure to assign "Q:\" to "Lenovo_Recovery" manually as that's not a plausible automatic assignment (but a reasonable one, keeping this special partition out of your sight whereas it would be a permanent temptation to use if for storing data on it when it were "D:\").

I can't say a lot about that "Free, Easy CD burner", only that it claims to run on Windows 7 and supports "Standard ISO9660/Joliet", the simple data disk format that I am using for burning my DVDs to get data there without them being converted by anyone. (It also contains a lot of conversion magic and can burn various special audio disk formats, none of which you'll probably ever need.) So it might be worth a try, and perhaps easier than changing the drive letter of the DVD burner.

Edited on 01/28/2012 10:01 PM.

[post:545#5619]
Stretch

01/29/2012 10:54 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Yesterday I was assuming that the DVD drive was part of the general Windows drive, 'C'. But today it dawns on me that it is a 'Device with removable storage', namely 'DVD RW Drive (E:)'. The letter 'E' shouldn't cause any problems regarding letter assignments. Can I go directly to 'Computer', open the E Drive there, and thereby avoid the overcomplicated 'Windows DVD Maker' program? All I want is a data disk after all, and Windows DVD Maker doesn't seem to have any idea what those are. But the thought occurs to me, am I really burning this data onto a removable DVD, or would I be placing it within the operating program of the DVD RW Drive (thus screwing things up)? I'm at a point where a folder full of converted anime is listed as 'Files ready to be written to the disk', but are they talking about the same sort of disk as I am?

Should I uninstall CDburner XP before I try to install the Free & Easy Burner?

Our topics have drifted away from getting VirtualDubMod to work, but I'm not complaining. VirtualDub works, and is easier than before, since there's no need to make a selection from 'Textsub'. When my computer first broke down, what I wanted most was simply to get the new one to be able to do the same things as the old one, which had become force of habit and thus easy, not to learn new procedures. But if you are curious about the results of the 'experiment', the least I can do in exchange for all the help you have given me is to cooperate.

Edited on 01/29/2012 11:06 AM.

[post:545#5620]
Devil Doll

01/29/2012 12:25 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

The DVD burner programs are independent of each other, they're just tools converting data (like AllToAVI or VirtualDub) and then sending them to the device driver of the DVD drive (the latter is a system component).
There is nothing wrong with uninstalling software you don't use though, it keeps the system at a level where you may understand which software was installed and is used for which purpose.

Drive "E:" is what my DVD burner has as well. (The next sequential letter after the two partitions of my internal hard disk.)

"Data disk" is a sloppy term, sorry. The terms you might want to look for in your burning software are "↗ISO 9660" and "↗Joliet".

You can read DVDs on a file resp. folder level in the Windows Explorer because the DVD contains a file system similar to the one of your hard disk. But writing a DVD is done using a physical method that makes incremental operations difficult. A DVD isn't as flexible as a hard disk in terms of writing data to arbitrary positions; the burner writes the DVD as if it were a tape, beginning at the middle of the disk and ending at the outside border. (Take a look at the back side of a DVD where you burnt only half its capacity of data onto: You will see different colors for the written and the empty part.) This way of writing causes one problem: The data need to be delivered in a steady stream; if the burner has to write the next sector and is lacking the data for it then the whole write process fails and the file in question is unusable which can't be corrected afterwards. Therefore the burning programs have to take care of this issue: They prepare the data to be written first, then begin to send them in a steady stream, buffering data in main memory so that the burning process won't get damaged by you, say, starting a video conversion that demands a lot of disk access with high priority.
When you write data on a DVD you can either close this DVD and then prevent any more data being added to it, or leave it open, thus allowing to append more data. You can also write data on a DVD in a way that any data previously written to it are hidden, thus allowing the DVD to be used for a large number of backup operations for the same data, leaving only the most recent version visible.
I believe to remember that there is a way of using DVDs for writing individual files onto them as if it were a hard disk; but being aware of the timing issues when writing data on DVDs I never tried this. I am doing only two things with DVDs: 1. burn a permanent disk in one process, "closing" the DVD-R at the end; 2. burn a DVD-RW in "append" mode, leaving the disk "open" so that I can add more episodes until it is full, then delete the whole DVD-RW and start again from scratch (until the DVD-RW "wears out", i. e. shows a singificantly rising error rate).

There is a device type named ↗DVD-RAM that might get close to what you expect - a type of disk that you can access in a similar way as a hard disk. Unfortunately this requires both a drive that is able to read and write DVD-RAM, and a different type of disks. You may want to check in the manual whether your DVD drive is perhaps able to handle DVD-RAM disks, and then purchase the corresponding disks. I never tried this but wanted to show you the idea at least.

The idea of the latest "experiment" was to check whether you could make MKVextractGUI2 redundant; if this doesn't have a high priority for you right now we can just postpone it as currently is the best moment to define methods of dealing with your new PC that will last for years, and as so many things there seem to be new for you there might be more important issues around.
I wondered whether we should create separate forum threads for separate issues which might reduce the "drift of subject" a bit but as long as you're fine with the current discussion style we can leave it this way.

Edited on 01/29/2012 01:07 PM.

[post:545#5621]
Stretch

01/29/2012 01:53 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I downloaded a number of new fansubs today, and I thought I'd try to figure out how to go through the conversion process without using the 'Documents' page. Previously, I would use 'Send To' to copy a fansub from the Utorrent 'Containing Folder' to 'Documents', where I would create a folder to contain it, the AviSynth script, and the extracted audio and subtitle streams. I noticed that I could create folders within the Containing Folder, so maybe that step was unnecessary. I dragged and dropped the blank AviSynth script to the Containing Folder. I placed episode two of Nisemonogatari from Commie fansubs and the script inside the folder, and created the script. Afterwards, the options where to send the original, blank script were limited, so I sent it back to 'Documents'. It looks like I'll need to repeat the drag-and-drop operation for each fansub. Now, would MKVextractGUI2 be able to locate this new folder? It could, if I take the route of Documents/Downloads/Nisemono 02 (the folder). ('Downloads' and the Utorrent Containing Folder are one and the same—that's why I lost the contents when I deleted 'Documents2'). By taking the same route I could likewise locate the extracted audio file for Switch, and the 'Switched' audio file for VirtualDub (which I started from the Nisemono 02 file). I decided to send the finished product to 'Videos'. But since this is all taking place within a sub-folder of 'Documents', is anytyhing really being accomplished?

You may notice that I didn't use the 'Anime' folder which I had created, because I don't see how to 'Send' stuff there. Perhaps I could drag-and-drop. I did this, and created a folder for episode one of Papa no Iu Koto wo Kikinasai from Shin-S fansubs (This was a show which was waiting to be burned onto a DVD in my old computer when it crashed, but was saved within Iomega). Would MKVextractGUI2 be able to find the folder in this location? It could, if I take a roundabout route through Computer / Windows 7_OS (C:) / Anime / Papa 01. Likewise Switch (though I had forgotten to click on 'Use source dir for output' and have no idea where the first extract was sent), and VirtualDub. This time I sent the completed conversion back to 'Anime', so 'Documents' was completely avoided, except as a place to get the blank AviSynth script from.

Maybe the place where I should be doing all of this is 'Videos', which is easier to access than 'Anime', hasn't had it's name screwed up, and is of equal status as 'Documents', so a problem there presumably wouldn't affect it.

Edited on 01/29/2012 02:01 PM.

[post:545#5622]
Stretch

01/29/2012 03:03 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I uninstalled CDburnerXP and installed 'FreeBurner' instead. I couldn't figure out how to move an entire folder ('Week 2 Winter 2012 Anime') to the program, so I placed the episodes there individually. The real test was when I clicked on 'Burn Now'. I was fearing another message that no DVD burner could be found, but instead it seems to be operating smoothly. I'll keep my fingers crossed for now. The 'FreeBurner' icon, by the way, is a DVD on fire. The burn process was surprisingly short, and I feared it had been incomplete. It didn't help that FreeBurner posts a message of 'No disk! Please insert writable disk into your device!'. But above that was another message, 'Burning Complete!'. I took the new DVD downstairs and loaded it into my DVD player. The first episode seemed fine, but the second gave me a crazy pattern of brightly colored static across the screen, and caused the drawer to pop open. I concluded that the burner didn't like AllToAVI conversions, because episode two was one of these. I reloaded the DVD and skipped over episode two. Every other episode seemed to play just fine, although I expected a similar response from the last episode, which was the only AllToAVI converted one besides number two. But no, it played OK as well. I went back to number two, and somehow it played normally on the second try. The only other problem was a human error in which I had mixed up the audio and video of two different episodes of a series. So, I am pretty much satisfied and relieved. If I have saved $55, I think I can afford to go out to lunch tommorrow!

[post:545#5623]
Devil Doll

01/29/2012 03:14 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I make the decision where to put a downloaded file before I start the download. I mentioned that downloading the torrent file triggers a configuration dialog in my uTorrent - that's where and when I decide about the location.
Going one step further, I am subscribing to certain releases in uTorrent; Amagami SS Plus and Zero no Tsukaima F will be downloaded automatically (and even into their respective folders on my hard disk) once the torrent file is published at TokyoTosho because my uTorrent listens to TokyoTosho permanently, and knows which files to download and which ones not to. I don't need to look whether the torrent file is available; this feature is what made me prefer uTorrent to other torrent clients. (Does this sound like an interesting experiment for you? It might become your introduction into "regular expressions".)
I do need a drag & drop operation for each file - sending a copy of the AviSynth script next to it. The video file remains where it is. The place of the conversion doesn't matter; I have AviSynth scripts, audio files, and conversion results within every folder of an anime that I am currently processing.

If "videos" is what you want to be the place for conversions, there's nothing wrong about using it; I prefer keeping different anime series in different folders though as I consider conversion a part of the anime's processing on my PC. And don't complain when Windows 8 will rename this folder to "My legally purchased private videos". ;-)

In Windows Explorer, "sending" can be done via the clipboard:

  • Select the file to be copied.
  • Type "Cntrl-C" for "Copy".
  • Set the focus on a window with the folder where to copy the file.
  • Type "Cntrl-V" for "Paste".
That's the same Copy / Paste you would use in your text editor for duplicating a text line.
(The file manager I am using has two windows permanently opened next to each other, and the "F5" key means "sent all selected objects from this window to the other one" whereas the "F6" key means "move all selected objects from this window to the other one", i. e. send and then delete the original objects.)

As for programs being able to locate a file: Think the other way round. Select the file, then use the context menu to "open with". The file will always have a real path name (including the drive letter, all folder levels, and the base name plus extension), and this path name will be sent to the program when invoking it via "Open with". And the program itself is a file as well; Windows Explorer finds the program via its complete path name (which is what the file name extensions are mapped to - a program such as MPC must be found even when you just double-click a video file, right?). In the "Programs" section of the "Start" menu of windows you see tons of icons - but their attributes will show you the real path name where the object resides that will be started when you click on this icon. Below the glittering skin of these GUIs are path names in most cases, it's as simple as that - making MKVextractGUI2 a negative exception (its programmer didn't bother to implement a dialog where you could select the path name of mkvtoolnix). Only when you add program parts to existing programs the installation location will be important - one example for this is the "plugins" directory of VirtualDub which is created solely for keeping VirtualDub extensions from 3rd parties.
When invoking the programs via the video file's context, the location where the video file is stored becomes irrelevant: You just leave an Explorer Window for this folder open, regardless whether it is a virtual name "Videos" or a real name "C:\anime".

Edited on 01/29/2012 03:27 PM.

[post:545#5624]
Devil Doll

01/29/2012 06:15 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Burning a data DVD should mean that the data format is irrelevant for the burning software because then "burning" isn't anything particularly different from "sending" a file to a different folder on your disk. If the file format matters then your "burning" software is converting the file to its own format (which may include using different video and audio codecs, and of course different file sizes).

As I mentioned before: You can read a DVD with the Windows Explorer. On this burned DVD, do you see exactly the files you asked to be burned, or some folder structure?

The time for burning a DVD depends mainly on the speed of your DVD burner; 4 minutes per DVD-R would be a good value, indicating a DVD drive capable of burning with "16X" speed. Read ↗CD and DVD writing speed for details, such as explaining why a slower burning speed may result in a better readability of the DVD.

Edited on 01/29/2012 06:25 PM.

[post:545#5625]
Stretch

01/29/2012 06:44 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Do you mean that even when I'm at Tokyo Tokoshan, I can predetermine exactly which folder of my computer a downloading fansub travels to (or at least the preliminary installation torrent)?

Hey, you're right—I pinpointed a fansub at 'Documents', typed Ctrl/C (nothing happened as far as I could tell, so I didn't think it was working), then went to 'Anime' and typed 'Ctrl/V' there—and the fansub promptly appeared. What will they think of next?

I'm used to DVD burning taking something like 20-30 minutes, although that's largely because I always had Nero double check the contents of the disk afterwards (I forget what the exact term was), and that took the bulk of the time.

On the new DVD there are no folders (I inserted each fansub into the program individually) just a list of them appears on the TV screen.

[post:545#5626]
Devil Doll

01/29/2012 10:06 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Not at Toshokan, but in uTorrent. (Hm... changing uTorrent's menu language to English requires a program restart, blah...)
Okay: In uTorrent, select the menu entry "Options" / "Preferences" / "UI settings". This has a section "When Adding Torrents" - that's where you configure what you want to happen when you download a ".torrent" file. Of these checkboxes, enable "Activate a program window" and "Show a window that displays the files inside the torrent".
Once you did this, download a torrent file and see what happens: You can now inspect what's inside the torrent before even starting it, and you can choose the location where the torrent content should be downloaded to. (The location of the ".torrent" file isn't that relevant, you will delete it anyway once the download of the content is complete; uTorrent has its own directory for these files.)
The uTorrent configuration hides a number of gems, some of which are really worth showing. This was not even one of them. (For example, you could tell uTorrent to automatically start AllToAVI for converting the completely downloaded file...)

On the DVD you burned, try reading the MediaInfo data of any such file, and check the codecs being used.

↗Cut, copy, and paste is much older than drag & drop.

Edited on 01/29/2012 10:13 PM.

[post:545#5627]
Stretch

01/30/2012 10:04 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

At Utorrents / Options / Preferences / Downloads I found boxes for 'Activate the program window' and 'Show a window that displays the files inside the torrent' already checkedmarked. There was a blank for 'Put new downloads in'. I wasn't sure if 'new torrents' represented the .torrent preliminary installation files or the downloads themselves (where they have been going up until now wasn't listed). I typed C:/Anime here. There was also a blank for 'Move completed downloads to', but I suspected that this wasn't what I wanted—I want the downloads to go straight to C:/Anime, not be stored temporarily in a subdivision of 'Documents'. I OK'd the change and went to Tokyo Toshokan to download something. I chose episode 16 of Mirai Nikki, and before long found that its icon had appeared on the 'Anime' page. This redirection of downloads seems to work.

According to MediaInfo, the Video Codec ID of a fansub on my DVD is simply 'XVID'. So is the Video Codec/Hint (whatever that is). Audio Codec ID is '55' and Audio Codec/Hint is 'MP3'. This seems to be the same for all of them.

[post:545#5628]
Devil Doll

01/30/2012 02:30 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

But you don't get the dialog I mentioned? Strange.

"Move completed download" would make it easier for you to tell apart incomplete from complete downloads so that you won't inadvertently try converting an incomplete one.
Actually uTorrent has an even better mechanism for this: In "Preferences" / "General", I have checkmarked "Append '.!ut' to incomplete files". This causes the temporary files for downloading torrents to have a different file name extension, and thus a different file type and a different icon, so that double-clicking them won't start your usual video applications for incomplete files. uTorrent renames these files to their original name when their download is complete.

Apparently your DVD has taken your converted files without converting the content once again; this is good. Which type of file system did you select for the DVD when burning it?

Are you interested in an experiment to automatically subscribe to an anime fansub? ([UTW] Amagami SS Plus would be an informative example as it is a complex yet frequent case.)
As a first step, you would have to visit at Tokyo Toshokan's RSS configuration page. Configure there which torrents you are potentially interested in; in uTorrent, menu "File" / "Add RSS feed" is where the resulting "Feed URL" belongs to (via Cntrl-C / Cntrl-V from TokyoTosho into this uTorrent dialog). The idea is to give uTorrent a version of the Tokyo Toshokan page that's easier to process than the web page you're used to.
You can also open the URL that you composed on this Tokyo Toshokan page in your web browser, preferably in Firefox (which has a nicer RSS reading feature than MSIE). Subscribing to such a feed in Firefox leads to creating a bookmark folder with the most recent torrents as separate bookmarks; clicking on one of these starts the download of the torrent file already. This might not be an improvement by itself but give you an idea what this RSS feed works like; ultimately it will be uTorrent who reads this feed, not you.

Edited on 01/30/2012 02:36 PM.

[post:545#5629]
Stretch

01/30/2012 04:15 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I have moved C:/Anime to the space marked 'Move completed downloads to'. I can't find any command for "Append '.!ut' to incomplete files" On 'General' or any other page of Utorrent. I didn't select any 'File System' while DVD burning yesterday, I just used the default one. Under Properties / General, 'Type of File: Shortcut (lnk)' is listed (but that's probably not what you're looking for). I'm kind of busy right now, but I'll take a look at automatic subscription as soon as I get a chance.

Edited on 01/30/2012 04:16 PM.

[post:545#5630]
Devil Doll

01/30/2012 05:47 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574


uTorrent 2.2.1 in use here but the feature should be available since 1.3.1.
(back then perhaps in a different configuration location)

[post:545#5631]
Stretch

01/30/2012 06:46 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Ah, here's the '!ut' option—it's on the 'Downloads' page with my Utorrent 1.6. I have checkmarked it and OK'd it.

I began downloading a new fansub today. I had thought that it would now be temporarily stored in 'Documents/Downloads' until it was complete, and then be sent to 'Anime', since I had removed the 'Anime' folder's address from 'Put new downloads in' in Utorrent, and moved it to 'Move completed downloads to'. But even the !ut version appears in 'Anime'. I guess I haven't returned the settings to exactly as they were. I pasted 'C:UsersRonDocumentsDownloads' into the 'Put new downloads in' blank, but that doesn't seem to change anything. On the other hand, I see how the '!ut' suffix automatically disappears once the download is complete. Actually, this isn't a serious problem, because incomplete downloads use a different icon from complete ones, so I'm unlikely to confuse them.

I activated Switch and got a message 'Switch Sound File Converter is due to expire in the next few days. Do you want to view current special offers for purchasing online now?'. I had thought it was freeware. Is this one of those programs where if I go to 'uninstall' it will offer to let me have it for free?

Edited on 01/31/2012 10:09 AM.

[post:545#5632]
Devil Doll

01/31/2012 03:53 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Your previous "expiration" event with Switch.

As for "move completed downloads to", my own experience with this feature is nil (I am doing this in two different ways, one I described already and one that would be part of the "subscribe" experiment). But as you probably changed configuration settings while running torrents, there may be torrents whose "rules" changed during their lifetime, thus the issue may go away all by itself.
Actually you don't need both the ".!ut" and the "move to" mechanism as either of these would be sufficient for telling apart complete from incomplete files; I prefer the ".!ut" method because the file name extensions influences double-clicking of the file as well which the folder location does not.

Edited on 01/31/2012 04:06 PM.

[post:545#5633]
Stretch

02/01/2012 07:28 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Oh yeah, I remembered this business of implying that I needed to pay for a particular program happening to me in the past, but not which program it was in regards to.

Regarding 'subscribing' to a particular fansub, the 'Customize RSS Feed' page tells me to 'copy this URL into your RSS program': ' http://tokyotosho.info/rss.php?filter=1&cat=1. Does that mean to cut-and-paste it to the 'RSS Downloader' page within Utorrent? I don't see how I select a particular series—or does that come later?

It looks like the downloading system now is operating as I had expected--first the incomplete fansub goes to 'Documents/Downloads', then, when finished, to 'Anime'. At that point it is automatically deleted from 'Downloads'. I think I will have them sent straight to 'Anime', to avoid the tricky 'Documents/Downloads'. I'll keep the !ut feature.

Edited on 02/01/2012 07:34 PM.

[post:545#5634]
Devil Doll

02/01/2012 08:36 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

We need to "introduce" Tokyo Toshokan to uTorrent first. The web page you're usually visiting is made for humans, not for programs; the URL you composed (and looks good) creates a list of separate entries that are much easier to "digest" by uTorrent (did you try opening this URL in Firefox? It should create a folder of bookmarks there, showing you what "RSS" contains; we don't need that permanently, it's just for your understanding). These entries will then be parsed periodically by the "subscription" mechanism in uTorrent.

My uTorrent version has on the left side of the window an entry "Feeds" that lists all the feeds I added there. When right-clicking the word "Feeds", the context menu appears and offers "Add RSS feed". That's where the URL goes pasted. (If your uTorrents looks significantly different then I encourage you to upgrade; I have set this to "automated but no betas", resulting in an upgrade every couple of months, similar to Firefox.)

Edited on 02/01/2012 08:58 PM.

[post:545#5642]
Stretch

02/03/2012 09:00 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Perhaps the problem is that Firefox is not my browser here. Should I download it? Anyway, I have fooled around with RSS subscriptions a little. I used the link above to reach the page where available fansub episodes are listed. I found one in the long list which I was mildly interested in, and copied it's individual URL to the 'Enter Feed' box on the RSS Downloader page in UTorrent. Nothing immediately happened, but I see a clock ticking down to the 'next update'.

[post:545#5643]
Devil Doll

02/03/2012 02:15 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

A "feed" is the list of entries, not a single one of these. So you need to enter the URL of the whole feed into the "Add Feed" field. (uTorrent itself will then offer a display of the list similar to what it looks like in the MSIE.)

Web browsers are a "religious" issue, as is Microsoft in general. I've been using Firefox (and its predecessors) for about 15 years now, back then mostly because of security issues and bugs in the MSIE; nowadays I'm using Firefox mostly because I can expand it with various plugins.

  • an integrated spelling checker that parses the text I'm just typing, underlining unknown words in red, user-extensible by adding unknown words to the dictionary via context menu entry
  • an advertisement blocker, configurable, using regular expressions for URL patterns
  • a cookies blocker, configurable
  • a tool to prevent adding visited pages to the browser's "history", configurable on a per website basis; I don't need to record my visits at Google, Wikipedia etc. which only slows down the browser
  • a security module where I can selectively allow/forbid any page to automatically send me to another page on a different website
  • a security module where I can selectively allow/forbid web pages to contain web pages from other websites, thus preventing ↗Cross-site request forgery attacks; the plugin suppresses "foreign" content and extends the browser's context menu by an entry listing these foreign contents and allowing to selectively enable/disable them; I generally suppress things like "Google Analytics" embedded in myriads of websites these days that would ↗allow Google to record my complete surfing behavior; note that even CAR uses "Google Analytics" code
  • an add-on offering permanently visible check-boxes near the browser tabs for the most frequently used configuration switches, the set of check-boxes being configurable by the user; most of this has now been replaced by the better plugins listed above
  • an extension that automagically rewrites the currently visited web page at YouTube, adding a button "download" to each page

[post:545#5644]
Stretch

02/03/2012 02:33 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

OK, I placed http://tokyotosho.info/rss.php?filter=1&cat=1 in the 'Add Feed' box. What do I do next?

[post:545#5645]
Devil Doll

02/03/2012 10:28 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

You should now have an entry in uTorrent for TokyoTosho, and be able to click on it; it should display the individual lines of the page you configured within uTorrent, and double-clicking any such line should start the corresponding download (i. e. no visiting the TokyoTosho page any more in your web browser). But I have no clue how this looks in a uTorrent version that was released in 2006.

You can try reading the RSS tutorial of uTorrent already but I can also guide you step by step to the "subscription" mechanism (of which I don't know in which version of uTorrent it was introduced; I'm using it for several years but maybe not since 2006).

Edited on 02/03/2012 10:35 PM.

[post:545#5646]
Stretch

02/05/2012 09:19 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I went to 'RSS Downloader' within Utorrent, and found that when I click on 'Releases' I get a list of titles. There is not much detail, though--I can only see the series title and episode number, not who the fansub group was. Columns for 'Episode', 'Format' and 'Date' are largely filled with question marks. If I click on a title I can either 'Open' it or 'Add to favorites'. Opening (and an OK) seems to lead to an immediate download, but have I 'subscribed' to this, or is it a one-time download? The word 'subscribe' doesn't appear anywhere. Adding the title to favorites looks like a subscription, since among other things I can specify which episode(s) I want. As a test, I requested episodes 1-3 of Mouretsu Space Pirates. So far, nothing has happened...

Maybe episodes 1-3 are too old to retrieve in this manner.

Edited on 02/05/2012 11:08 AM.

[post:545#5647]
Devil Doll

02/05/2012 01:00 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

The set of columns in this list is configurable. Right-click on any column header; you should get a drop-down list with all available columns. The columns that I selected as potentially useful are: "name" (which includes the subbing group in most but not all cases), "added on", "done", "status", "ratio", "avail", "format", "codec".
(Note that it depends on the RSS feed which of these columns will have a non-empty content; other RSS feeds, covering different torrent trackers, may have more or less of these columns available. TokyoTosho automatically extracts these fields from the torrent names, so if the torrent releaser is too lazy to exactly specify the content of this torrent in the torrent name you'll get less information in those fields, and automatically detecting torrents that "belong together" will become more difficult.)

With "subscribe" I mean "automatically start a torrent when the torrent file will be released on the RSS feed", referring to future releases. But this may include the "present time" expressed by the current "time window" of the RSS feed. The size of this window depends on the RSS feed itself; TokyoTosho set this window to something like 48 hours. "Mouretsu Space Pirates" has current releases for episode 5 already, so yes, episodes 1-3 are out of the "visibility window" of the RSS feed already.

So what you might do is select some episode 5 release of "Mouretsu Space Pirates", and "add to favorites". A dialog should open, allowing you to configure this subscription, with the RSS feed already set to TokyoTosho. You probably need to set the "save in" folder; the other fields may remain as they are for the time being, we'll look at these later. (Do not set an episodes interval yet. Example: Selecting an episode 4 file of "Mouretsu Space Pirates", and then limiting the download to episodes 1-3, results in no download at all as both contradict each other.)

Somewhere in the lower area of this dialog there should be a "?" button. Click on it; you should get a feedback showing you which torrents are matched by this configuration. You should see the torrent you added as favorite, confirming that your "favorite" configuration is doing what you expect it to do; if you get no result then none of the torrents in the "time window" matches the request you specified. Click on the "close" button to confirm changes and leave this dialog.

Back in the uTorrent main window, select the TokyoTosho RSS feed, and from the context menu, choose "update feed". Now your uTorrent will request the URL you configured for TokyoTosho, and check every line within the result whether it matches your favorites. In this very moment the "Mouretsu Space Pirates" episode 5 torrent will be started.
(uTorrent will automatically update every RSS feed using a configurable time interval; in my configuration this is set to "15 minutes". So you don't usually have to update the feed manually, this is just to demonstrate the dependency between specifying a "favorite" entry and triggering a result.)

Up to this point, the RSS feed offers little additional value. But the "subscription" mechanism is only one step away. So far, you configured one existing torrent for download; the subscription will need a description of how torrents for future episodes will look like. But that's left for the next posting. Until then, make up your mind as for which subbing group's "Mouretsu Space Pirates" release you would like to subscribe to. ([UTW] Amagami then being your second subscription experiment as it allows to make full use of the dialog fields.)

Edited on 02/06/2012 07:56 AM.

[post:545#5648]
Stretch

02/06/2012 09:50 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I had thought that perhaps I was looking at the wrong page, since the list of titles was relatively short compared to Tokyo Tokoshan as a whole, but I guess that's because this is only 48 hours' worth of titles. I was looking for this 'Dialog' that you mentioned, and finally noticed a tiny box with a question mark at the bottom of the 'RSS Downloader / Favorites' page. With Mouretsu highlighted, I clicked on this and got a message that included 'Date of last match: 2/5/2012 9:20:09 AM', 'Last episodes matched: N/A' and 'Matching episodes: {Anime}{WhyNot} Mouretsu Space Pirates – 05 {EC8ESC71}.mkv'. So I guess that in the past 48 hours one version of episode 5 of Space Pirates has become available.

[post:545#5649]
Devil Doll

02/06/2012 01:14 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

So let's assume you want to subscribe to WhyNot's release of Mouretsu Space Pirates. How will the names of future releases (probably) look like? They will contain "[WhyNot]" and "Mouretsu Space Pirates", most likely in this order, and some other information that we can't be sure about, such as an episode number, a hash checksum, a file name extension etc. Can we teach uTorrent to look for similar torrent names?

Yes, we can. The magic words here are ↗Regular Expression, which is a string consisting of constant as well as variable parts. There are various elements that can be used in such regular expressions, and there are even different notation forms of them, but let's keep it as simple as possible here: A variable string of unknown length is symbolized by the character "*".
The Filter field in the "Favorites" definition may contain regular expressions, and is matched against the torrent name as a whole, meaning the string there must describe the complete torrent name, not just a part of it.
One possible regular expression for subscribing to WhyNot's release of Mouretsu Space Pirates would be "*[WhyNot]*Mouretsu*Space*Pirates*". Note the "*" as first and last element in this pattern; without these the match would fail as the torrent name actually ends in ".mkv". Also note that I replaced the spaces within the anime name by asterisks to allow for underscores ("_") or similar separators being used at this position as well (check the current TokyoTosho list to see a few examples of these).
Another possible regular expression would be "*[WhyNot]*Mouretsu*Pirates*"; the official name of the anime is even "Moretsu Pirates", so in order to allow both notations your could even use "*[WhyNot]*retsu*Pirates*".

Try playing with these regular expressions, and use the "?" button to check whether it matches the torrent(s) you are looking for. The less specific your pattern is, the more torrents it will match; for example, "*[WhyNot]*" would match each and every torrent released by the WhyNot fan-subbing group from now on.

It would actually be best if the fan-subbing group themselves would create their own RSS feed instead of the Torrent tracker doing it. This would limit the traffic between the RSS server and the uTorrent client to the absolute minimum, and also make it redundant to match the name of the fan-subbing group if all their RSS feed would contain were their own releases. Unfortunately, there don't appear to exist that many groups with their own RSS feeds with torrents (whereas quite a few groups have their own RSS feed with release text messages on their website); apparently the groups want the downloaders to visit their page at least instead of blindly downloading everything they release. Also, the torrent tracker is used to getting lots of traffic, thus requiring a lot of bandwidth even though the actual data transfer isn't going via the torrent server; with this in mind it doesn't make that much difference running a small RSS feed in parallel.

Edited on 02/06/2012 08:53 PM.

[post:545#5650]
Stretch

02/07/2012 10:10 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I must be doing something wrong, because I keep getting 'Matching Releases: None', even when I post a Regular Expression as simple as "Matteru". Should I be placing "Matteru" is the 'favorites' column, along with the 'Releases' titles that lack asterisks? I did this because when I place them in 'Filters', they seem to vanish when I 'Close' (or do anything else), and are not there when I re-open. Apparently they are not being saved.

Wait a minute--a message just appeared that the download of an episode of 'LaGrange' had just taken place--that word was a Regular Expression I had fooled around with, then deleted when nothing seemed to happen. Now I see that three different versions of episode five (from three different fansub groups) are being placed in 'Anime'. But not once have I clicked on '?' today and gotten anything besides 'Matching Releases: None'. And I'm pretty sure I placed 'LaGrange' in 'Favorites', not 'Filters'.

I see that when I copy a title from 'Releases' to 'Favorites', the same title appears in 'Filters'. I copied {Mirai Nikki - 17 H264 AAC MP4.mp4} and simplified the text in the Filter box to MiraiNikki*17*. If I understand what's going on, now I'll get every version of episode 17 (which becomes available within 48 hours) rather than just this one. Before I had even finished typing this, the initial episode had finished downloading.

Edited on 02/07/2012 10:27 AM.

[post:545#5651]
Devil Doll

02/07/2012 10:38 AM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

As I mentioned above: The "Filter" field of the "Favorites" entry must match the complete name of the torrent; if you omit the asterisks as first and last character of the regular expression you won't get the strings matching. "Matteru" without asterisks would only match a torrent whose name is exactly "Matteru", nothing else.

Mirai Nikki: You will get every episode 17 of this anime to be released in the future or during the previous 48 hours, as long as your "Favorite" entry exists, that's what "subscribing" means.

Now that you have created at least one working "Favorite" entry, some words about the fields in this dialog:

  • Filter: The regular expression describing which torrents should be started.
  • Not: An option to exclude torrents whose name EDIT: matches a specified regular expression just like the "Filter" matching mechanism. Amongst the currently available torrents, a good example would be the [SubDesu] release for "Phi Brain", available in "1280x720px / H.264 / MKV" or "720x400px / XviD / AVI", the latter being directly playable on your DVD player. To get only the AVI release here, you would type "*.mkv" into the "Not" field. ("[UTW] Amagami" might be your test case for making use of this field as they release both variants as well.)
  • Quality: Another option to specify one of possibly several available subs within one "Filter" specification. For example, when the same fan-subbing group releases the same anime in 720p and 1080p quality and you're only interested in the smaller 720p file (because your DVD player doesn't support HD resolution and you would have to downscale the video size to 704x396px anyway), you could select "720p" to avoid downloading the 1080p release as well. In reality this doesn't work well because torrent names often are created in a sloppy manner; also note that the same effect can be achieved by matching the quality as part of the "Filter" entry (after all, the "Quality" field has been taken from the "Name" of the torrent in the first place by TokyoTosho so there's no reason why you wouldn't be able to do the same).
  • Save In: The folder where the torrent data should be saved to. (I am using separate folders for each anime series, and keeping the whole series in this folder until burning it on a DVD; storing all anime files within the same folder would mean to keep a three-digit number of files there which I consider unmanageable.)
The checkboxes allow some more specific configuration:
  • Episode number: Allows to specify a range of episode numbers. Useful for suppressing the download of some "version 2" release of previous episodes you already downloaded in case you don't care about minor fixes. It might also happen that the same fan-subbing group releases the complete series again when the DVDs resp. Blu-rays become available, and often they make a "batch torrent" at the end of the series causing you to download the whole series a second time.
  • Don't start downloads automatically: When a torrent release matches a "Favorite" filter, uTorrent will create a downloading process for this torrent that you will see in the program's main window. But it's your choice whether this process remains on "hold" (and must be started manually) or begins downloading automatically. There might be two reasons for using this check-box: a) limited space on your hard disk, b) uncertainty about the "Filter" expression. For example, when a new anime starts airing you might want to specify a "Filter" regular expression only with the anime name, then observing which fan-subbing groups are subbing this anime, perhaps manually download one or two of these releases (but not every single one of them), then deciding which group's release to subscribe to, and refining the "Filter" regular expression accordingly by adding the group name there.

Edited on 02/12/2012 06:30 PM.

[post:545#5652]
Stretch

02/07/2012 04:49 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Actually, I did include the asterisks, it's just that here at Mikomi they have the effect of boldfacing the words between them and disappearing. Maybe this will work: *Matteru* (two asterisks on each side). It looks like clicking on a title in 'Favorites' displays the Regular Expression I created earlier, so it hasn't been lost after all. In 'Episode Numbers', what does '1x' in 1x12-14 mean?

[post:545#5653]
Devil Doll

02/07/2012 09:44 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Modifications in uTorrent's "Favorites" dialog are automatically applied, thus "close" doesn't lose anything.

When using "*Matteru*" as pattern I currently get three matches via the "?" button, episodes 3-5 from "[NemDiggers]".
(If you want to write a meta-character "as is" in a CAR posting, prepend it by a "\". You will find this in use in most synopsis sections that I wrote for CAR, such as this one.)

The idea of the "1x12-14" would have been "Season 1, Episodes 12-14", that's what episode numbers of multi-season TV series usually look like (uTorrent wasn't created for anime in particular). The uTorrent user manual even allows an alternate syntax "S3E1" as "Season 3, Episode 1" (in uTorrent, use the "F1" key, then search for "S3E1" to find this paragraph) .
But TokyoTosho doesn't comply with this episode numbering schema (different anime seasons usually have different names anyway) so this feature isn't usable for this particular RSS feed. I never tried it anyway so I wasn't even aware of this.

Edited on 02/08/2012 11:55 AM.

[post:545#5656]
Stretch

02/09/2012 11:00 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

The idea which is coming together here is that for now I should look for my favorites fansubs, from my preferred fansub group, in the same way as before—at the Tokyo Tokoshan website, in the list of most recent releases. But once they show up, I should go to Utorrent, find the matching release, move it to Favorites, create a Regular Expression, and thereby subscribe to exactly the fansub series that I want. Otherwise I'll just be fooling around, starting off with the wrong release (because its from a different fansub group, etc), and then trying in vain to create a Regular Expression which somehow 'fixes' that problem and downloads the right fansubs. Does this make any sense to you?

[post:545#5657]
Devil Doll

02/09/2012 12:34 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

It all depends on what's your primary trigger for getting interested in a specific anime (and this is not TokyoTosho in my case), and how specific the name of the anime will be in the torrents. Once you're sure what you want and how it is named, the regular expression will help you.

And if you're not sure about which fan-subbing group to choose, you can always set the checkbox "don't automatically start this torrent", then collecting a number of torrents in "halted" state in your uTorrent main window from where you can manually start and/or delete these torrents. This would allow you to automatically get a notice when other fan-subbing groups come up for the same anime, possibly providing better quality or even a file format more suitable for your devices and requirements.

AVI / XviD releases have become rare and lower priority by those who create them; so if, say, UTW releases Amagami SS Plus in MKV first you can't be sure they won't release an AVI variant a few days later. Subscribing to "*[UTW]*Amagami*" would get you both variants, and then it depends on you whether you're willing to wait for the AVI release (which is what I am doing right now) or rather want to watch the episode as soon as possible, at the cost of having to convert it yourself.

In general, working with these regular expressions is a process of permanent incremental refinement. It happens now and then that a group releases the same anime in 1080p and 720p, and you download episode 1 in two variants until refining the subscription definition by either including "720p" into the filter pattern or excluding "*1080p*" by the "Not:" field.
Those whose ISP contract allows only a limited traffic volume contingent per month will have to be cautious not to use regular expressions causing them to download five variants of every episode; then again, these are the target group for the "don't start automatically" check-box I mentioned above.

Edited on 02/12/2012 06:32 PM.

[post:545#5658]
Devil Doll

02/10/2012 12:45 AM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Somewhere above I mentioned how cool it would be to have separate RSS feeds for each fan-subbing group.

Today I stumbled over the minglong tracker which offers exactly what I was asking for. I recommend their RSS feed for [UTW] as this group is known to release AVI versions of their subs as well.

Edited on 02/10/2012 07:12 AM.

[post:545#5659]
Stretch

02/10/2012 10:04 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Yesterday when I checked Tokyo Tokoshan, nothing that I wanted to download had become available for the past two days. But today I found that episode six of 'Kill Me Baby' from {UTW-Mazui} had appeared. Up until now I've been collecting their episodes of this series from this fansub group, and I want to automate the process. I went to RSS Downloader / Releases, found the matching release, moved it to 'Favorites', and converted the title into this Regular Expression: *{UTW-Mazui}KillMe*Baby*720p*.mkv*. I figure that '720p' will give me the right size instead of 1080p or something like that. I requested episodes 1x6-13 since I figure it's too late to download number five (which I still need) and this will probably be a 12 or 13 episode series. At my 'Anime' folder I created a sub-folder called 'Kill Me Baby' to contain the downloads. I closed the RSS page, and figured that in theory a download should begin soon--if not immediately, when the 'Update' clock ticked down to zero. I waited for this to happen, but no download has begun. I added '{UTW-Mazui}' to the Regular Expression since that wasn't in the release title and I only want episodes from this group. Could that be the problem?

Edited on 02/10/2012 10:20 AM.

[post:545#5660]
Devil Doll

02/10/2012 10:03 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

As I mentioned above, the episode filter doesn't work for TokyoTosho releases because the torrents released there don't use "1x" in their torrent names (as most anime aren't using this multi-season numbering scheme). You have to leave the "episode number" field empty.

If you're afraid of downloading too much then set the check-box "Don't start downloads automatically" within the "Favorites" definition; you'll get each and every matching torrent in the uTorrent main window but in "halted" state so that you have to manually start the download.
Using "720p" as part of the regular expression is the right idea but manually starting the downloads you want and deleting the rest gives you even more control, and might give you a feeling of security during the first experiments; in this "defensive" modus you would only subscribe to getting a notice for each release of a matching torrent file.
You can disable the check-box again once you believe your regular expression to be perfect.

In your particular expression, the asterisk at the end is redundant because ".mkv" is the file name extension, and there won't be anything after this extension. ("*" matches a string of variable size, even the empty string, that's why your regular expression still works.)

But what if UTW releases a 400p version in AVI? Your expression wouldn't match then.
My suggestion for this anime would be: "*[UTW-Mazui]*Kill*Me*Baby*" as pattern plus "*1080p*" as "Not:" clause. This way you would accept files of any file name extension, ".mkv" as well as ".avi", and of every screen resolution other than "1080p" (which is the largest one you could get). If UTW releases an AVI version you will get it this way.

Edited on 02/12/2012 06:32 PM.

[post:545#5661]
Stretch

02/11/2012 11:18 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Should "Don't start downloads automatically" be on the 'UTorrent / RSS Downloads / Favorites' page? Because I don't see that option here. I can select things like 'Filter matches original name instead of decoded name', 'Give download highest priority', or 'Smart ep. filter', but not 'Don't start...etc'. This is UTorrent 1.6.

I thought that maybe adding '*{UTW-Mazui}*' was messing things up since it hadn't been present in the original release title, but you don't seem to think that that would be a problem.

So, there is no need for an asterisk after .mkv, but removing it won't fix my problem either?

I have modified my Regular Expression to match yours, but still no download has begun.

[post:545#5662]
Devil Doll

02/11/2012 08:25 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

This post shows how the "Favorites" dialog looks in uTorrent 2.1 (with the "Don't start..." checkbox), so apparently your 1.6 version is too old.
(I automatically upgraded to version 3.1.2 yesterday; everything looks slightly different there but no significant change of functionality compared to version 2.1.)

I repeat: You can't use the "Episode Number" filter for anime torrents; if you still try you will never get a match and thus no download.

Edited on 02/11/2012 08:29 PM.

[post:545#5663]
Stretch

02/12/2012 10:32 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I removed the episode number yesterday, but there still haven't been any automatic Kill Me Baby downloads. Once in a while I get a message asking if I want to upgrade UTorrent; usually I am busy with something else and ignore it. I will see if I can find it and set an upgrade in motion.

I noticed that the next episode of Persona 4 from {Commie} was available, and made it an RSS Favorite. Nothing seemed to be happening as I fooled around with the Filter. I noticed that the Filter contains no asterisks in its original form, and wondered if UTorrent 1.6 might not want asterisks included. But again, nothing happened. I settled for a simple Filter of nothing more than 'Persona 4' (with asterisks), and three different versions of the episode are downloading. So far, it seems that I can subscribe, but only if I use a very simple Filter and allow numerous unwanted versions of a fansub to download along with the desired one. Maybe I can use the 'Not' box to reduce these.

Edited on 02/12/2012 11:10 AM.

[post:545#5664]
Devil Doll

02/12/2012 06:19 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

"*Commie*Persona*" might be a simple regular expression limiting your downloads to those of one fansubbing group (and the "?" button will show you whether it works as expected).
Commie released most episodes in a "v2" version so if you don't want these then "*v2*" might be a potential "Not:" term. (Me, I always collect "v2" versions as I want to archive the best available version.)

The current "time window" of TokyoTosho contains a "Kill Me Baby" release of [Muteki] whose file name uses "_" as separator between the words of the anime title, thus not matching a whitespace-separated name.
"*Muteki*Kill*" currently produces 3 matches; adding "*1280*" as "Not:" term reduces this to 1 match (the smallest 480p release), thus showing that I gave you a wrong explanation of the "Not:" field which also does a full match and not a substring match.
(I fixed this error in the posting above and marked it with "EDIT:"; I also edited all examples for the "Not:" field in subsequent postings.)

As for the upgrading, this is a matter of seconds, requiring only a restart of uTorrent itself (and even this restart would be done automatically IIRC). I encourage you to upgrade to version 2.1 as it looks much like 1.6; the most recent version 3.1.2 has different colors, differently looking widgets and dialogs and as such might look slightly unfamiliar while offering some new features that you probably won't use (such as a web interface for your uTorrent application or the ability to stream videos).

Edited on 02/12/2012 06:40 PM.

[post:545#5665]
Stretch

02/13/2012 03:44 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Well, today episode six of Brave 10 from {Hadena} became available, and I already had 'Brave 10 - 05 .mkv' in 'Favorites', and (asterisk){Hadena}(asterisk)Brave(asterisk)10(asterisk).mkv(asterisk) in 'Filters', with no episode preferences, yet it didn't download. Did I have one too many asterisk after '.mkv.'? Should there be no episode number in 'Favorites'?

Would 'uTorrent 2.1 Beta / 1.8.4 Download' be a close enough match? Should I uninstall my current version first, or will that not be a problem?

[post:545#5666]
Devil Doll

02/13/2012 03:53 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

There can't be too many asterisks as the asterisk matches a string of variable size (even the empty string). An additional asterisk after the file name extension is redundant but no show-stopper.

The problem with your filter string is a different one: You applied "*[Hadena]*Brave*10*.mkv*" to the already decoded torrent name. And this name doesn't contain ".mkv" any more. There are two ways of fixing this:

  • Either omit ".mkv" in the "filter" string, i. e. use "*[Hadena]*Brave*10*",
  • or enable the check-box "Filter matches original name instead of decoded name" in the "Favorites" dialog.
But again: You must not use the "episode numbers" field for torrents at TokyoTosho because TokyoTosho doesn't provide "compatible" episode numbers, thus preventing any match for these.
You have seen how uTorrent displays the "recent" torrents from TokyoTosho within its own program window. Try adding the column "episode" to this display, and you will see what is happening: uTorrent tries to extract a string of the form "number" - "x" - "number" from the torrent name, and ends up getting "1280x720" as episode number because that's what TokyoTosho is sending: The 720th episode of the 1280th season of this anime...

And having "Brave 10 - 05.mkv" in favorites doesn't help for episode 6 whose torrent name doesn't contain a "05": That's what the asterisks are for, keeping the episode number a variable part of the torrent name.

Upgrading uTorrent is done by me within uTorrent itself: Menu "Help" / "Check for Updates" offers me an appropriate version (and I have not included "Beta" versions in uTorrent's configuration: "Options" / "Preferences" / "Update to beta versions" unchecked), and starting the download from there automatically overwrites the current uTorrent installation, leaving all configuration settings intact. I never had problems with this.
I would have suggested version 2.1.2 but even the brand-new version 3.1.2 won't be that shocking an experience for you, just some layout and color changes but functionality mostly identical to the version 2 releases I have seen. So you're not doing anything wrong by getting the latest release available.

As for downloading [Hadena] fansubs, I suggest reading this page. There's a reason why I put Zero no Tsukaima F on halt for the time being (they're even misspelling the anime's name). I would prefer using the [Doki] release of "Brave 10".

Edited on 02/14/2012 12:15 AM.

[post:545#5667]
Stretch

02/14/2012 06:49 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

OK, I have removed the '.mkv' suffix from each Filter. Does having 'Brave 10 - 05.mkv' in favorites guarantee that no episode besides number five will automatically download, even though the filter allows any episode number? I asked uTorrent to 'Check for Updates' but the answer I got was 'There is no new version available at this time'.

[post:545#5668]
Devil Doll

02/14/2012 07:03 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

"Brave 10 - 05.mkv" (without any asterisk) will most likely guarantee no "torrent activation" at all, unless there's a torrent with exactly this name (and no mentioning of the fan-subbing group).
Note that with "torrent activation" I mean a torrent getting added to your main uTorrent window whereas downloading additionally depends on whether the "Don't start downloads automatically" check-box has been checked. So if you're afraid of getting too many downloads you can prevent them from automatically starting, then requiring you to manually start each of them but allow you to delete them instead (your benefit then being that you won't miss any of them appearing).

Today I got a new "stable" update for uTorrent 3.1.2. installed.

Edited on 02/14/2012 07:08 PM.

[post:545#5669]
Stretch

02/14/2012 07:26 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I have been asking uTorrent to add titles (like Brave 10 - 05.mkv) from 'Releases' to my list of 'Favorites', and leaving them unchanged there. I assumed that 'subscribing' to episode five (or whatever) would set the subscription process in motion (for one episode) since there must be at least one fansub out there which matched that title, and if I set up a Filter which allowed additional episodes it would continue. But that clearly isn't the case. Should I be making changes even to the titles in the 'Favorites' list? Do I need any entry at all in 'Favorites' (I would leave it blank), if I have a Filter?

[post:545#5670]
Devil Doll

02/14/2012 09:27 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

The idea of "subscribing" is to create a permanent process, which clearly isn't the same as downloading one file. So "subscribing to one file" is a contradiction by itself.
Unfortunately, that's exactly what uTorrent does by default. So yes, you have to edit the Filter entry in order to make it subscribe to more than exactly one file (or to be more precise, to more than exactly one torrent which might contain a number of files).
The optimistic expectation that uTorrent would automatically set a process of subscribing the whole series in motion would require uTorrent to understand which part of the torrent name is the episode number. But with every group naming their releases as they please there's no way of doing this, and instead you, the user, are required to provide an "appropriate" Filter pattern for each and every subscription (and hope that the group won't change their way of naming their torrents half-way though the series).

I didn't exactly understand your last question, because the "Filter" is part of the "Favorites" entry. You need a "Favorites" entry to be able to have a "Filter" pattern in the first place.
The entry in "Favorites" on the left side of the screen is merely a "name tag" (for a picture see this posting above) allowing you to identify which anime this entry refers to (currently I have 15 "Favorites" entries, many of which may have been stalled by the fan-subbing group or releasing a new episode every couple of months only but I'm still collecting them long-term, and I may have several entries for the same anime in case I want to test more than one fan-subbing group or even get the anime in more than one language, with English not being my native language). So your procedure may indeed be:

  1. Select an interesting torrent in the "Feeds" display for "TokyoTosho anime" within uTorrent,
  2. "Add to favorites",
  3. edit the filter pattern to subscribe to more than one file.
I am usually skipping the first step because it requires a torrent of this anime to be within the "48 hours window" of TokyoTosho. Instead, I directly jump into the "Favorite" dialog via the menu entry "Options" / "RSS Downloader" (keyboard shortcut: "Cntrl-R"), then "Add" an new entry and fill in the dialog fields as required. This I can do any time of the week, even when no torrent of this anime has been released during the last two days.

Edited on 02/14/2012 10:23 PM.

[post:545#5671]
Stretch

02/15/2012 04:31 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I've been editing the Filters right from the start, but leaving the entries in the 'Favorites' list alone, for fear of messing something up. If the Favorites list entry includes an episode number, does that mean that only that particular episode will download, even if I have created a Filter which allows any episode number? Since I'm not getting very good results, the thought occured to me to simplify the 'Favorites' entries--maybe even remove them altogether (except for the checkbox and blank space that I deleted them from) and create a Filter which specified what I wanted. Basically, no conditions whatsoever regarding the Favorites list, instead all conditions are determined by the Filter. I doubt if that will work...

[post:545#5672]
Devil Doll

02/15/2012 05:00 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I don't understand what you're talking about.

Again: The string on the left side is merely a name for your "Favorite" entry with the purpose for the user's understanding what this entry is meant to do; for uTorrent itself this name is irrelevant.

All that matters for uTorrent is the "Filter" pattern which will be compared with the list of torrent names from the RSS feed. If and when this comparison matches, uTorrent downloads the torrent file and creates an entry in your list of torrents in uTorrent's main window, potentially downloading the content of this torrent.

Edited on 02/15/2012 05:02 PM.

[post:545#5673]
Stretch

02/15/2012 06:49 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

It seems that the only way I can download a fansub via RSS Downloader is if I make no changes whatsoever to the Filter which automatically appears when I add a title to Favorites. I wonder if this version 1.6 of uTorrent doesn't even allow asterisks.

[post:545#5674]
Devil Doll

02/15/2012 07:27 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Try the filter pattern "*Hadena*" and see for yourself whether the "?" button gives you more than 0 matching torrents. If yes, then select the "TokyoTosho" feed entry in uTorrent, and from the context menu select "Update Feed"; you should immediately get all matching torrents started.

Currently uTorrent updates "stable 3.1.2" versions on an almost daily basis; right now I got "version 3.1.2 build 26745" replaced by "version 3.1.2 build 26746". (3.1.2 was the first release with a "3" as first digit, they did wait quite a while before naming it "stable" but apparently there were minor issues that had to be fixed nonetheless.) If you're afraid of version 1.6 being too old, just upgrade.

Edited on 02/15/2012 07:59 PM.

[post:545#5675]
Stretch

02/16/2012 01:53 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I became so frustrated with the RSS function on uTorrent 1.6 that I have downloaded uTorrent 3.1.2 Build 26749. I decided not to 'uninstall' the old version first, partly because I couldn't figure out exactly where it was being kept--it seems like it resides entirely on the 'Downloads' page, and no 'uninstall' option appeares when I click on it. I was afraid that I would wind up with two programs clashing with each other, but the new version seems to have taken over the downloading tasks that were underway (or in hiatus) on the old program. This strikes me as much more fancy than it used to be. Here's a pleasant surprise: for some reason episode 17 of Mirai Nikki from {GotSpeed} absolutely refused to download via the old program, remaining at '0.0% Complete'. But all of a sudden it is racing forward and the download completes as I type this. My old list of 'Favorites' is replicated on the RSS Downloader page. Another nice thing: uTorrent doesn't automatically close anymore when I click on '-' to move it off the viewscreen. I notice that there is no longer a 'Releases' page--am I supposed to get titles from Tokyo Tokoshan (or wherever) and cut-and-paste them to here now? I also notice that a download of a fansub of Guilty Crown from {Hadena} is underway. I don't watch this show, but my Filter for Recorder to Randsell consists of nothing more than the word 'Hadena', so that's the only explanation I can come up with. I add the word 'Recorder' to the Filter so that I won't wind up with every available Hadena fansub in my computer. One minor problem is that uTorrent wants me to download something called 'Paz' as well.

Edited on 02/16/2012 02:21 PM.

[post:545#5676]
Devil Doll

02/16/2012 02:25 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

A filter with "Hadena" alone will match to nothing except for a torrent whose complete name is "Hadena", which is unlikely to ever appear on TokyoTosho. The "?" button should show you 0 matches despite several "[Hadena]" releases currently being available.
"*Hadena*" (which I suggested for test purposes) would be a filter pattern that might cause Guilty Crown to be started.

The reaction for clicking on the minimizer resp. closer widget is configurable in "Options" / "Preferences" / "UI settings".

I'm not sure what the old uTorrent displayed on a page named "Releases". Are you talking about the RSS feed of TokyoTosho? This one should still be available in the "Feeds" section at the left side of your screen.

Edited on 02/16/2012 02:31 PM.

[post:545#5677]
Stretch

02/16/2012 03:08 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Ah, 'Feeds' serves the same purpose as 'Releases' did, and is now located at the left side of the main screen. I definitely have an option for 'Don't start downloads automatically' now. I checkmark this, but it seems that every time I return to the RSS Downloader page the checkmark has disappeared. I did some fooling around on the old program in which I attempted to manually type 'Hadena' into both Filters and even as a Favorite. But I deleted those before downloading the new program, because I wasn't getting any results. Anyway, I haven't gotten any more unwanted Hadena downloads. 'Paz' seems to be some sort of album; I must have hit the wrong button somewhere which caused a big ad for it to cover my screen until I found away around it. One curious thing (to me; I'm sure it makes perfect sense to you): fansubs that are downloaded via RSS don't create a preliminary uTorrent on the 'Downloads' page.

Edited on 02/16/2012 03:13 PM.

[post:545#5678]
Devil Doll

02/16/2012 08:56 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I'm not sure what "Paz" is but ↗uTorrent has been purchased by BitTorrent, Inc. in 2006; over the years, the uTorrent GUI has become more and more bloated with advertisement elements.
Fortunately you can turn of their display in the "Options" menu; the only parts of the main window that I am displaying are Toolbar, Detailed Window, Status Bar, and Side Bar (i. e. F4, F5, F6, F7). Everything else I have unchecked to make the GUI easier to understand.

The "don't start automatically" check-mark doesn't disappear in my installation. Try selecting one Favorite entry, set the check-mark, select a different Favorite, then select the first Favorite - the check-mark there should still be set.
Note that this check-mark belongs to an individual Favorite, so when you open the "Favorites" page but don't select any Favorite entry you won't see this entry's settings.

With "Downloads Page" you mean what is displayed when you click on "Torrents" on the left side? In my configuration, RSS-triggered downloads do create an entry there (and this is necessary because you wouldn't ever be able to start a torrent created via RSS but in "not downloading" state, nor would you be able to abort an unwanted torrent that has been started via a too powerful regular expression).
Or do you perhaps mean they don't create a torrent file in your "Downloads" folder on your hard disk that you would then see in the Windows Explorer? This might depend on what directory you configured for storing the "*.torrent" files (uTorrent: "Options" / "Preferences" / "Directories"). Somewhere on your hard disk there must be the torrent file even for an RSS download because uTorrents must compute checksums for the downloaded data and compare these against the checksums in the "*.torrent" file in order to guarantee the correct data have been downloaded.
Me, I don't care about temporary torrent files in the long run and have set this torrent files directory to my "garbage" folder (C:\tmp), one that I regularly delete all files from every couple of weeks.

Edited on 02/16/2012 09:31 PM.

[post:545#5679]
Stretch

02/17/2012 11:43 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

OK, I had assumed that 'Don't start automatically' was something that either applied to all Favorites or none, but now I see that it needs to be checked for each favorite. Today I found a fansub on the uTorrent main page sitting idle at 0.0% complete, in 'Stopped' status (IIRC), presumably because I had checked 'Don't start automatically'.

When I manually downloaded, the preliminary torrents were place on the Windows 7 page 'Downloads' and stayed there until I deleted them. RSS downloads don't leave a torrent there. I did a 'Search programs and files' and can't find the torrent anywhere. Maybe now they automatically delete once their job is done? No big problem, anyway, just a matter of curiousity.

Guess what: an offer has appeared for me to download uTorrent 3.1.2 (build 26753). Should I? It is supposed to be 'Stable'.

Edited on 02/17/2012 04:15 PM.

[post:545#5680]
Devil Doll

02/17/2012 11:31 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I already have build 26753 installed. As a rule of thumb: Updates without changes in the version number (i. e. "builds") or with changes only in minor levels (such as "3.1.4") are bug fixes or security improvements, and I install these automatically; updates in major levels (such as "4.0.0") are feature changes, changing the look & feel of the whole application, and possibly even reducing the functionality of the program or incompatibly changing existing configuration data, hence I'm more cautious with these. That's why I suggested upgrading to version "2.1" at first which I knew for a long time whereas version "3.1.2" was new even for me and I had to check whether everything I'm used to still works as expected.
You can see this as a general rule for all software: When Microsoft tells you it wants to install some minor system patches (for which you should at least have the notification enabled in Windows) it's probably best to comply; when Microsoft tells you to purchase the next Windows version it's probably best to do some research first (you just made your own experiences with switching from "↗Windows 5.1" a.k.a. "Windows XP" to the next but one Windows version "Windows 7", skipping "Windows 6" a.k.a. "Windows Vista" in the process).
Allowing you to see this difference is the effect of having multi-level version numbers in the first place; as long as the software makers use their ↗version numbers in a responsible manner the users can act accordingly.

I just took a look into the folder where I installed uTorrent to. Besides the current program binary "uTorrent.exe", this folder contains no less than 8 files named "uTorrent.exe.<number>.tmp". Each of these files contains an installation program for the uTorrent version of that time, so you can always downgrade to whatever uTorrent version you used back then. Keeping all these files (and their creation dates) also provides you with a history of all version upgrades you ever performed for uTorrent, at the small price of 0.7 MB per program version.

As for the torrent files being deleted automatically: This would of course make sense. uTorrent knows whether a download was completed successfully (by computing checksums for the downloaded files' content and comparing these with the checksums that are the content of the torrent file); after this step the torrent files aren't necessary any more.

The "don't start automatically" checkbox must be a separate feature for each "Favorite" entry because it allows you to express your degree of trust in this particular "Favorite"'s configuration. It would be bothersome having to put all "Favorite" entries on "don't start automatically" just because you're experimenting with one new entry there.

Edited on 02/18/2012 05:33 AM.

[post:545#5681]
Stretch

02/21/2012 05:07 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Today several shows which I want to download became available. One was a series which I didn't already have a favorite for, the other two were ones which I did, but they had refused to download. I created three new Favorites with differing Filters to see if there was some sort of trick to this. The new show was episode 7 of 'Another' from {Commie}. I simplified the Filter to * Commie * Another * , and before long it began downloading (I forgot to set the 'Don't download automatically' option). Since this had worked I changed the other two Filters to be similar. The other fansubs were Daily Lives of High School Boys 07 ffrom {sage} and Ano Natsu de Matteru 07 from {Commie}. Matteru already had a favorite, with the Filter '* {Commie} * Matteru * , but again that hadn't worked. This time the Filter was * Commie * Ano Natsu de Matteru * , and after five or ten minutes the preliminary torrent appeared in 'Stopped' status at 0.0% complete. One minor problem is that the Torrent title isn't given enough space for me to completely read it; for example, what I get is '{Commie} Ano Natsu de Matteru ...' --I can't tell if this is .mkv, .avi, 480p, etc. No doubt there's a way to personalize the display if I play around with it. As of yet nothing has happened regarding Daily Lives 07. It already had a Favorite with a Filter of '* sage * Daily * Lives * of * Highschool * Boys * ', now it has a second one, '* sage * Daily Lives of High School Boys * 480p *. I notice the difference between 'Highschool' and 'High School'.

Edited on 02/21/2012 05:08 PM.

[post:545#5682]
Devil Doll

02/22/2012 02:36 AM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

When you move the mouse over the header line of the feed display page, the mouse shape will change from a pointing arrow to a symbol with a vertical line and two horizontal arrows, indicating that you can change the column width by clicking and dragging. You can also change the order of columns by clicking and dragging sidewards, and the set of columns by right-clicking on the header line and selecting additional resp. unselecting existing columns.

http://www.bilder-space.de/show_img.php?img=4ef6ca-1329897334.png&size=original
(CAR doesn't allow to directly embed a CGI generated IMG into a forum posting...)

Make your filter patterns as simple as possible. "*Commie*Matteru*" should already do.

No need to wait for 5-10 minutes when instead you can select the TokyoTosho feed and choose "Update Feed" from the context menu, thus manually triggering the comparison between your "Favorite" entries and the current "RSS windows".

Another page with RSS feeds for individual fan-subbing groups: http://bt.edwardk.info/trac/wiki/List_of_Groups

Edited on 02/22/2012 03:00 AM.

[post:545#5683]
Stretch

02/22/2012 02:46 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Modifying the uTorrent screen was easy once I knew what I was looking for. I didn't really care about categories like 'App', and 'Label' and 'Playback', I just wanted to be able to read the full title. I have simplified the Daily Lives Filter to * sage * Daily * 480p * . Clicking on '?' shows that a matching feed is available, yet no download begins.

[post:545#5684]
Devil Doll

02/23/2012 03:10 AM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Hm... this is tricky.

At first, I tried matching only "*sage*" and excluded "*720p*", resulting in the "Bakuman" torrent of this group being started while the "Daily Lives" torrent is not. So what's the difference between both torrents?

I then tried to download the "Daily Lives" torrent by double-clicking it within uTorrent. This results in an error message: "unable to load [sage]_Daily_Lives_of_High_School_Boys_-_07_[480p][E94D463B].mkv: torrent is not valid bencoding".

In the context menu of this RSS feed entry, uTorrent offers the option: "Open URL in Browser". As you may have seen in my screenshot above, I have this URL as column in my "Feed" display, and despite being from the same fan-subbing group, the torrents for "Bakuman" and "Daily Lives" reside on different web servers.
Usually the URL is the location of the torrent file; if that's the case then uTorrent can automatically download the torrent file and start the download. Unfortunately, this is not required; the URL may be any URL, such as the URL of a web page offering a link to the actual torrent file; you as browser user would be able to handle this.

And the latter is the case for this particular torrent. The URL is this one which only offers a link to the torrent somewhere on this page. But uTorrent requires this URL to already be the torrent file itself, and thus fails when trying to automatically start the download.

Unfortunately, uTorrent does not give you any error message about what happened, causing your justified confusion. More precisely, it doesn't show you that error message in a location you looked at.
Below the "Feed" window in uTorrent, there's a number of tabs for sub-windows: "Files", "Info", "Peers", "Ratings", "Tracker", "Pieces", "Speed", and "Logger". Select the "Logger" window; that's where you will find the error message, and see that uTorrent did try to automatically start the torrent.
So the reason for this issue is that [sage] created an entry at TokyoTosho whose "URL" component doesn't comply to the usual standard, and thus can't be handled by the RSS subscription mechanism.

Edited on 02/23/2012 08:35 AM.

[post:545#5685]
Stretch

02/24/2012 11:39 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I can't seem to find this 'Logger' sub-window. I see "Files", "Info", "Peers", "Ratings", "Tracker", "Speed", but not "Pieces" or "Logger".

On the bright side, episode 8 of Kill Me Baby automatically downloaded. I think this is the first time that an episode number greater than that of the original Favorite has done so.

[post:545#5686]
Devil Doll

02/24/2012 12:28 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Right-click on "Speed", to get a context menu where you can enable/disable the set of tabs you want to see. I have all of these enabled.

In general, right-clicking on most everything is a good idea, as it may open unexpected configuration possibilities.

Edited on 02/24/2012 12:29 PM.

[post:545#5687]
Stretch

02/24/2012 04:34 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I finally got into 'Logger', but I must have waited too long, because only four entries are listed (none regarding 'Daily'), and all took place today.

Edited on 02/24/2012 04:35 PM.

[post:545#5688]
Devil Doll

02/25/2012 03:10 AM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Once the match between the RSS entry and the Favorite pattern has been performed, this particular RSS entry for "Daily" is considered "no longer interesting" (because uTorrent has already done what it possibly can do), regardless of any error message.
You can reset this by selecting this RSS entry, and from the context menu choosing "Clear Feed History". By doing this, the "Daily" entry once again becomes eligible for matching your subscription. But in fact this RSS entry has dropped out of the 48 hours window of the RSS feed already, and anyway, all you could get is the error message.

Try subscribing to the AVI variant of [UTW]'s Amagami SS Plus instead, that's in the current time window. Use the pattern for fan-subbing group and anime, and the "Not:" field for excluding the MKV version.

Edited on 02/25/2012 03:15 AM.

[post:545#5689]
Stretch

02/25/2012 01:06 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I have added {UTW} Amagami SS Plus .avi to my list of Favorites. The Filter is ' * UTW * Amagami SS Plus * avi * ', and under 'Not' I entered * mkv * . Before long, it began downloading.

[post:545#5690]
Devil Doll

02/25/2012 04:07 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

Having "avi" in the pattern and "mkv" in the "Not:" field is redundant, as either none or both of them will be true. But I think you are now able to handle subscriptions via the RSS feed, and hopefully it will reduce your work for downloading.

[post:545#5691]
Stretch

02/27/2012 02:45 PM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

Monday Persona 4 episodes 19 & 20 from {Commie} automatically downloaded. And Tuesday no less than three different episodes did so.

Edited on 02/28/2012 04:49 PM.

[post:545#5736]
Stretch

04/24/2012 11:41 AM

Reviews: 1918
Posts: 1312

I'm trying to set up automatic downloads for Spring series which seem to be good. First I have to decide which ones are worth watching, then whose fansub I like best, then catch it within the 48- or 72-hour 'window' when it is available. But so far, so good. Getting a new set of automatic downloads started is complicated and difficult, but once it's done it should save me a lot of trouble in the long run.

[post:545#5737]
Devil Doll

04/24/2012 07:46 PM

Reviews: 365
Posts: 1574

I tend to make the regular expressions less precise at first, sometimes (when I don't know any of the groups for this anime so far) even to the point of omitting the fan-sub group, meaning that I download every file available for an anime for the first 1-2 episodes in this case, allowing me to compare several fansubs of the same episode and get notice about other groups subbing the same anime (I'm not always going with the fastest release as you can see here, and sometimes there will be a recoding group producing exactly my favorite file format from the release of a fan-subbing group).

As soon as I made up my mind I can always narrow down the potential results by making the regular expression more restrictive.

[post:545#6359]
addseo1115

06/13/2015 04:04 AM

Reviews: 0
Posts: 3

That is good suggestions.

Reply to this topic Start a new topic
Back to topics list

Community Anime Reviews

anime mikomi org