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Movies have to be dragged into the iTunes interface for aTV to play them?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by patent10021, Jan 8, 2011.

  1. macrumors 68000


    Can't we point iTunes to any drive (including NAS AEBS) and have aTV play those files? The only movies aTV will play are movies that are actually dragged into the iTunes interface movie folder?

    I thought the whole idea was that you could have an external drive with 1TB of movies and aTV could read from that drive? Right now my aTV is only playing movies that I've actually dragged into the iTunes window movie folder.

    I want aTV to automatically recognize movies that are in my HD without having to drag them into iTunes window.

  2. macrumors 68000

    Then you bought the wrong item. ATV was always designed as a way to play your iTunes content on your TV.

    Most people that have an ATV use iTunes to organize their media anyway.
  3. macrumors 68000


    Thing is iTunes doesn't organize anything. The user has to do it all. Regardless of brand or device, it should be able to automatically recognize compatible media put into a designated iTunes folder. What do you do every time your media library updates? For me that's every hour since I'm always converting files to mp4 format and downloading new music.

    I guess that's why people want to use server solutions like Plex. If you have tons of DVDs and CDs you want to convert to mv4 format for aTV then your library is consistently updating and if you have 2-4TB of data it's going to be on external HDs.

    Guess there is no choice but to daily drag new files to the iTunes window movie folder.
  4. macrumors regular

    Cant you just drag them in without copying them to the iTunes media folder? That way they can stay in their storage location but will still be in your library.
    I think you have to hold down option as you drag it in. iTunes will then ready it from the stored location.
  5. macrumors 68020

    Itunes does organize things. Your problem is that you are not adding them to your iTunes library. It can't organize anything it doesn't know about. Some of the conversion and most of the tagging tools have options to add to the iTunes library immediately after done. You could use that or you could set up a folder action yourself.

    You'll need to turn off "copy files to iTunes Media Folder" in the iTunes settings if you only want media on your external drive and just let iTunes reference the files from there.
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Just setup the 'automatically add to iTunes' folder on the NAS drive, and when you get a new file/movie/TV Show/Home Movie you want to watch, drop it in there. iTunes will do the rest and it'll be available on the atv.

    You can keep your files anywhere. Just tell iTunes where to see them (by dropping them onto iTunes) and boom boom. Job Done.

    I let iTunes organize my music, but not my video library. It just knows where they are.

    btw...make sure you remove the 'copy to iTunes Music Folder' check box BEFORE dropping the movie onto iTunes. If not, it will copy it to where you probably dont want it.
  7. Moderator


    Staff Member

    That's what I do. My music is on a FW external drive and my movies on a NAS drive. iTunes doesn't have a problem dealing with multiple drives.
  8. macrumors 68040

    Exactly correct. My entire media library (about 1.5 TB) is kept on an external attached to my Mac Mini. After any conversion/tagging, I either have it sent to iTunes or manually add it to my library. With "copy files to iTunes Media Folder" turned off, it just points to the file location on the external.
  9. macrumors 6502



    Is it really that difficult?
  10. macrumors 68000


    I understand why people don't want to use iTunes.. well no, I don't understand it, but I certainly am not going to argue with someone who refuses to use it because I put a lot of effort into tagging, organizing and maintaining my iTunes library (now over 2TB) and it works great for me.
    For someone willing to put in the time (amount depends on how anal you are about stuff.. for instance, I add BPM, record label, producer and recording location for the albums I rip) iTunes is EXCELLENT at managing your media. Thanks to the time I put into my media when it's loaded into iTunes, I can search for any album that Rick Rubin produced, or any album recorded at Abbey Road and come up with a list. I can search my movies to determine which are Miramax, which are star Pauly Shore and which are directed by Jason Reitman. This might not be something people are interested in, but is just to prove that iTunes CAN organize things really well. Throw in properly tagging albums, separating out TV shows by season, including some high quality artwork and doing your best to make sure the quality of your content is high and you can create an excellent personalized on-demand network.
    I LOVE that having an ipad, iphone and appletv means that I can take any song, any tv show and any movie and pretty much watch it whenever and wherever I want... the downside is the time it takes to tag music files, rip cds, convert flac/apple lossless rips to high quality AAC, rip DVDs/blurays, convert videos to h.264, etc etc etc... but it's not things you have to continue doing, just once per file.
  11. macrumors 6502a

  12. macrumors 68000


    Definitely! Everything is backed up somewhere. I used to have a 4TB NAS that mirrored the 2TB of data but now that I'm over that I've been spreading out my back-ups manually across a few drives until I save up for a Drobo or something. I meant that you only have to add the information to the file once
  13. macrumors 6502a


    Mine is a Drobo with 4 x 1.5 drives. Where those files went I have zero idea. I blame my kids!!:cool:

    And I was running out of space the last month or so. Bought 2 x 2Tb drives for insertion/replaceing a coupel of the 1.5s. Hint: When you change drives that large, the Drobo 'rebuild' takes FOREVER!!! 56hrs (and still happening for replacing just one....KNEW I shouldve done both at the same time!!!!)

    Hows the price on 2Tb drives now?? 109$!!!! A year ago I was looking and they were 450$AU!!! Glad I waited.

    My prob now is my source files are of such magnitude now...what the hell do I back them up to??? I cannot justify a matching Drobo!! Im thinking of like 6 x 2.5" 1Tb WD passport drives.
  14. macrumors 68000

    Just think what we'll have next year? 3-4 TB drives for nearly 100$?
  15. macrumors 6502a

    how do you make itunes put the movies on a seperate drive like a nas..?
  16. Moderator


    Staff Member

    I don't 'make' iTunes put them there. I tell Handbrake to save them there then add them to my iTunes library.
  17. macrumors newbie

    Sorry if im asking a stupid question, but is there no way to set up itunes with two or more hard discs storing all the media, and get it to automatically monitor both discs and then add media automatically into its library when you save from handbrake etc onto the second disc?

  18. macrumors 6502a

    Not that I know of.

    Personally, I just put the files where I want them and then add them to iTunes (from the iTunes file menu). Easy enough.
  19. macrumors 68000

    You could set up a folder monitored by Hazel and get it to add files to iTunes when they are put into that folder. See mac.jedi's automating ripping guide (sticky thread in this forum) for some more info on Hazel.
  20. macrumors 65816

    I rip, encode and tag movies on the internal hard drive, then drag and drop onto iTunes - which then copies the file(s) to the iTunes library on my external drive (which is backed up onto a NAS). Once I've verified that the encode is good, I delete the source files.

    I do it this way round because I think that encodes will process faster on the internal drive, although this may not be the case.
  21. macrumors 68040

    Hmm, never actually thought about it. Considering my Mac Mini only has 2.0 gHz C2D and I only see about 4-5 fps encoding speed when doing blu-ray rips, I just figured that write speed on my external HDD connected via FW wasn't the limiting factor.
  22. macrumors member

    Not exactly, but you can set up a folder action script to watch those folders and then have an applescript to add the files into iTunes directly.

    For example: http://dougscripts.com/itunes/itinfo/folderaction01.php

  23. macrumors 6502a

    I'm pretty sure you are right about that.

    I occasionally rip to an external HDD and sometimes to the internal and I can't say I've ever noticed an impact on speed.
  24. macrumors 65816

    That's entirely possible. I recently got an i7 iMac, so I don't want anything slowing that sucker down!
  25. macrumors 6502

    Or you could create an alias and just put it in your movies folder. Problem Solved.

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