Apple TV gen 4 home sharing photo screensaver photo limit issue

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Apple TV gen 1 fan, Jan 7, 2016.

  1. Apple TV gen 1 fan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2016
    #1
    Totally let down by my new Apple TV 4th gen. Turns out that Apple TV 2nd, 3rd, and 4th generation only cache about 100 photos from your iTunes photo home sharing library and then only randomizes those few photos for screensaver and slideshow...duplicates constantly. This problem bug is super annoyingly oblivious in Floating screensaver mode. 1st generation Apple TV is the only unit that truly randomizes all your iTunes home sharing photos because it synced all photo's from your iTunes file to its hard drive for use with screensaver.

    This is particularly insanely stupid given the new 4th gen Apple TV has a solid state drive with 32gb or 64gb of space. An easy software modification could allow the entire home sharing iTunes photo library file to be loaded onto the 4th gen's hard drive and the screensaver program could then truly utilize and randomize all your home photos...just like the 1st gen Apple TV (which has the world's all time best screensaver)...but alas, per Apple Customer Care, home sharing of my photos for the screensaver is limited to about 100 photo's total per screensaver session as this is all the unit pulls into its cache from my iTunes home computer library photo file.

    I hope some engineer at Apple will see how stupid the new screensaver operates with home sharing iTunes photo's. I only have about 2000 photos but I know some people have tens of thousands. This is the modern digital age where we all have tonnes and tonnes and tonnes of photos...how is Apple not allowing us to display them in the same awesome manner as the 1st gen Apple TV...I am truly baffled by this one.

    Guess I'm returning my Apple TV 4th gen tomorrow (after I was told by Apple Customer Care before purchasing it that it would randomize and display all my home sharing photos in screensaver...wrong! Only about 100-150 per screensaver session). :(

    Side Note: I do understand that playing your screensaver photos from the iCloud is supposed to then utilize all photos for random display on screensaver although I can not confirm this to be true or false. The problem I am noting is specifically in regards to home network sharing of photos from a home computer with iTunes for use with the Apple TV 4th gen screensaver feature.

    Any help or suggestions with work arounds and/or third party screensaver apps, etc would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. cipher29 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    #2
    I can confirm that streaming from iCloud photos hardly works at all .. I've pointed my screensaver at a shared album that has about 1000 images in it... At best, it cycles through about 40 images.. It's a total failure.
     
  3. benjitek macrumors 6502a

    benjitek

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2012
    #3
    If you instead access your photos using the ATV4 Computers app, select one of your albums or all-photos and then click either the 'Play Slideshow' or 'Set as Screensaver' button it cycles through all the pictures, at least it does on mine.
     
  4. Apple TV gen 1 fan thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2016
    #4
    Is this something you have to do manually every time or will the screensaver then forever in the future automatically kick in and utilize all the photos in my iTunes file for the randomized display?

    The best way to see this duplication issue is to use the Floating option for screensaver. Have you tried the floating option and watched it for about 2-3 minutes to see if the same photo's start repeating? This is how I see the issue in both screensaver and slideshow and Apple Customer Care higher level techs/engineers confirmed this issue with me yesterday with no solution.

    Thanks so much for the help!
     
  5. benjitek macrumors 6502a

    benjitek

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2012
    #5
    Sorry, I don't know what you mean by 'all the photos in my iTunes file' -- I'm not using iTunes, I'm accessing my Photo Library via the Computers app on the ATV4's homescreen. When I click the 'use as screensaver' button, it remains my selected screensaver until I change it. In the ATV's Screensaver Type Settings screen, it shows 'Home Sharing' as my screensaver option. Whether I point it to a album (folder) or all-photos, it cycles through all of them. I prefer the built in Aerial screensaver though.
     
  6. bucksaddle macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #6
    Yep, this is something that has progressively gotten worse with each model released with the floating screensaver.
    1st Gen ATV: All photos from the local library randomly shown, no duplication. (Remember no option for home sharing or shared iCloud photo libraries on 1st Gen ATV - all synced via iTunes)
    2nd / 3rd Gen ATV: Only about 100 photos from a home sharing library displayed however a shared iCloud photo library did randomly display all photos with no duplication.
    4th Gen ATV: Both local home sharing library and shared iCloud photo library now only show about 100 photos.

    I thought with the expanded storage on the 4th Gen ATV we may get back to some of the functionality found on the 1st Gen ATV (all photos from local library can be randomly displayed), but not only did that not happen they also killed the "workaround" of the iCloud shared library. Disappointing.
     
  7. le.bouch macrumors member

    le.bouch

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    #7
    I raised this point here just after the ATV4 was released but got lectured that I didn't understand what 'random' meant and that it was inevitable that I'd keep seeing the same old photos!

    I share a test folder of about 600 photos from my iMac via iCloud Photo Sharing. I can access it via the ATV4 but as soon as I select any random screensaver I see the same old 40-odd photos.

    I have a Photos library of around 6000 photos and was so looking forward to using the identically-named app on the ATV4. Photostream (urgh) never worked properly for me on ATV2 or ATV3 and I had high hopes for the ATV4. It's a huge disappointment to me and the reason why I nearly returned my device - only laziness prevented me, in all honesty.
     
  8. gpspad macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2014
    #8
    I noticed this at Christmas with the ATV3. We had our annual Christmas party, but this year I set up my ATV3 to stream through my favorites folder on my mac via iTunes. It works better than using the iCloud photo stream, but after a while I noticed it never updated the photos I removed from the favorites folder. There were photos in there that never came up.

    I would buy my parents a new ATV4 if they fixed this, but until photos are integrated, there isn't much in it for them to upgrade from the ATV3.

    PS: I have a ATV4 I still have in a box, was waiting for amazon prime support, its probably time to return it. I was hoping for the best, but between no photo support and no amazon prime. Im not feeling the ATV4.
     
  9. JoeShades macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Location:
    Williamstown, NJ
    #9
    Or you could use another App like MRmc or whatever that Kodi like App is called and play a slideshow with that
     
  10. le.bouch macrumors member

    le.bouch

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    #10
    But would MrMC (for example) read the native Photos file on my Mac?

    I'm guessing you have to install additional software on the Mac to push your photos / videos / whatever to the MrMC app on the Apple TV? If so, you could signpost such software to your iTunes Media folders and it will see your separate songs, movies, etc - but photos are stored in one large proprietary file, specifically read by the Photos app, ie the photos are not stored individually...
     
  11. JoeShades macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Location:
    Williamstown, NJ
  12. le.bouch macrumors member

    le.bouch

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    #12
    So the MrMC ATV4 app can 'pull' photos from the Photos app on a Mac?
     
  13. JoeShades macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Location:
    Williamstown, NJ
    #13
    It will pull photos from whatever folder on your Mac that you want
     
  14. le.bouch, Jan 10, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016

    le.bouch macrumors member

    le.bouch

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    #14
    Thanks for the reply but perhaps I'm not phrasing the question properly..

    Will the MrMC ATV app read the proprietary Photos (note the capital P) library file on a Mac? Images are not stored individually on a Mac under the Photos app but in one large file. If the MrMC app doesn't read it then it's a non-starter for displaying your Photos library in any form.
     
  15. priitv8 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2011
    Location:
    Estonia
    #15
    iPhoto Library contains all your pics individually. It is actually not a file, but a directory. Just Finder hides it from you. You can still open it as a directory, if you take the Show Package Contents option.
     
  16. le.bouch macrumors member

    le.bouch

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    #16
    I did not know that!

    Thanks so much - time to experiment! I do still wonder though whether remote programs (like an ATV app) can see the package contents too?
     
  17. priitv8 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2011
    Location:
    Estonia
    #17
    Technically iTunes' Home Sharing is able to share Aperture/Photos/iPhoto Library. But in my experience the extent of photos I can see on aTV is totally random and so far I've not found any explanation on how does it select the ones I can see.

    PS Apple programs tend not to use big lump files. That would prevent Time Machine from doing effective incremental backups.
     
  18. le.bouch macrumors member

    le.bouch

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    #18
    Thanks again. Yes, I'm aware that Home Sharing allows the Mac Photos Library to be shared and also that it's a disappointing experience. That is the topic of this thread..

    The previous poster suggested that MrMC could replace the ATV4 native apps and provide an alternative, hopefully better, screensaver experience.

    What I'm wondering is if MrMC can read the Mac Photos library too, or if not will it be able to 'see' the individual images which are generally hidden in Finder?
     
  19. JoeShades macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Location:
    Williamstown, NJ
    #19
    Having used Kodi in he past i have no doubt MRmc will be a better experience for photos, so if home sharing sees the pics you should not have a problem
     

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