ModernMedia UI+ - Modern Theme and All-New Features

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W10MC

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ModernMedia UI+ - Modern Theme and All-New Features

#1

Post by W10MC » Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:35 am

ModernMedia UI+ is a new application released as part of Windows 10 Media Center Community. It provides a modified and modernized theme across the Media Center user interface with brand new built-in features, enhanced program data and much more. All of the details about the app are available here.

With support for Windows 7 and later, any WMC users looking for a major upgrade should give it a try!
ui+.screen.png
ui+.start.png
ui+.synopsis.series.png
-Mike

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#2

Post by garyan2 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:50 am

:clap: :clap: :clap:

Very nice work.

:clap: :clap: :clap:
- Gary
Stomping out the Rovi disease, one media center at a time. http://epg123.garyan2.net

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#3

Post by W10MC » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:30 am

garyan2 wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:50 am
:clap: :clap: :clap:

Very nice work.

:clap: :clap: :clap:
Thanks, Gary!
-Mike

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#4

Post by rberkenpas » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:52 am

Hey Mike,

Downloaded and installed it.
However, it breaks my WMC. it does not start anymore.
so i had to go back with restorepoint (luckily)

W10 LTSB 2016, Dutch.

Regards Robert

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#5

Post by IT Troll » Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:59 pm

The setup file is being detected as malware (PUA:Win32/Puwaders.B!ml) by Windows Defender and is being blocked. VirusTotal regards it as being clean and so this is most likely a false positive.
https://www.virustotal.com/#/file/86e75 ... /detection

I took it for a quick spin on a VM. The theme is quite similar to Modern8 but parred back even more and fully monochrome. Personally I prefer a little colour on some controls; e.g. play, delete, record. It looks like a couple of icons got missed though and are unchanged; Extras explore and Burn CD/DVD. Also Music playback is largely unchanged and still features blue cloud effects.

It works by modifying Media Center system DLLs which can be a little risky, especially if you are using other mods which modify the same files. Patchou's Media Center Themer achieves the same by modifying things on-the-fly in memory which I think is a safer approach. I couldn't see a way of customising the theme, so if you have add-on menu strips/items (e.g. Recorded TV HD, PowerDVD, TotalMedia Theatre, etc.) then I don't think these are going to match.

It seems that you cannot use the Metadata enhancements without enabling the theme, which is a shame. It would be nice to be able to use these with your own existing or custom theme as these add real value and are a welcome development.

I'm not sure how useful the filters and effects are. I could perhaps see rotation being useful for home videos, but these functions only appear to work on Recorded TV and not on videos. Playback of Recorded TV has an Evaluation Copy watermark which I guess goes away if you Activate your installation. The subtitle visibility option may be of benefit to some but I was hoping this might extend to videos. Giving Media Center a way to control subtitle visibility in MKV files would be a killer feature.

I'll be watching with interest to see what happens next with this project.

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#6

Post by jachin99 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:10 pm

IT Troll wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:59 pm

I took it for a quick spin on a VM. The theme is quite similar to Modern8 but parred back even more and fully monochrome. Personally I prefer a little colour on some controls; e.g. play, delete, record. It looks like a couple of icons got missed though and are unchanged; Extras explore and Burn CD/DVD. Also Music playback is largely unchanged and still features blue cloud effects.

It works by modifying Media Center system DLLs which can be a little risky, especially if you are using other mods which modify the same files. Patchou's Media Center Themer achieves the same by modifying things on-the-fly in memory which I think is a safer approach. I couldn't see a way of customising the theme, so if you have add-on menu strips/items (e.g. Recorded TV HD, PowerDVD, TotalMedia Theatre, etc.) then I don't think these are going to match.
I haven't tried it yet but I'll take a few guesses about how to address some of these issues. Media center themer lets you change things like backgrounds, and tiles but when you get into heavy modifications then you start to hit its limits. For example, MCT will only let you add one extra start menu tile, It applies a colored tint to every inactive tile, and this can't be changed (At least that I know of), and only a resource edit will allow to add things that were never there (I used a resource edit for a while that gave me a different background for every page in WMC for example so music, pictures, recorded TV all had their own backdrops). I bet you can still use MCT over top of this to give everything more color, and I agree that all black won't sit well for everyone.


For adding start menu strips, as mentioned above I could never add more than one with MCT BUT I bet you can still go back and re-register your programs into the new resource file created by their software via the registermceapp.exe command. I did this all of the time, and I even changed the recordedtvhd tiles to match some themes I built, and add custom strips for streaming plugins. So it will take some work but I bet you can still add all of your tiles back via the command line, and change the icons and backgrounds using MCT. I'm getting an error when I try to run the program (it installs fine) but I want to do some troubleshooting on my own before I make a complaint.

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#7

Post by IT Troll » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:28 pm

jachin99 wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:10 pm
I haven't tried it yet but I'll take a few guesses about how to address some of these issues. Media center themer lets you change things like backgrounds, and tiles but when you get into heavy modifications then you start to hit its limits. For example, MCT will only let you add one extra start menu tile, It applies a colored tint to every inactive tile, and this can't be changed (At least that I know of)
I would imagine that the Metadata enhancements are mostly changes to the XML which then reference the server app for the additional data. If so, it might be possible capture these changes with MCT and incorporate the new XML that way...

I have used MCT to remove unwanted tiles/rows, reorder the sequence and add a new matching custom row which included RTVHD and other TV functions. I think you can change the tint used on standard inactive tiles which is then overlayed onto the colour(s) of the icon. However, it is not possible to change the tint used on custom strips and add-ons, which always have a blue tint. This seems to be baked into the Media Center code.

My test VM didn't have a full TV setup and so I couldn't test out the guide enhancements. I did however find that if I right-clicked during Recorded TV playback, Media Centre instantly crashed to desktop. This could well be because I didn't have the EPG setup.

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#8

Post by RyC » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:45 pm

I got running in a VM and it looks pretty slick. It also seems to work in extenders!

Testing a little more, it seems like it works with MyChannelLogos (at least the logos part, and I assume EPG123 logos too). Additionally, parts of Patchou's Media Center Themer seem to still work. I have a custom clock, a few logos, and some string replacement set up for MCT and it still shows up.

I'm really liking this so far.

This seems like a cool trick too:
Dual Live TV Buffers: Automatically buffers the current and previously tuned channels, enabling fast switching between channels, including pause and rewind capabilities. NOTE: Two new user accounts must be created manually and configured to emulate a Media Center Extender.

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#9

Post by W10MC » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:20 pm

rberkenpas wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:52 am
Downloaded and installed it.
However, it breaks my WMC. it does not start anymore.
so i had to go back with restorepoint (luckily)

W10 LTSB 2016, Dutch.
It's hard to say what is causing that behavior without having more information, but it could be related to the system language. All testing has been performed on English-language systems and there are no major bugs so far.
IT Troll wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:59 pm
It works by modifying Media Center system DLLs which can be a little risky, especially if you are using other mods which modify the same files.
The files are modified using a default "template" of clean resources which are applied on the first run, so any third-party modifications will be discarded when the modern theme is enabled. This ensures that there will not be any conflicts.
IT Troll wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:59 pm
I couldn't see a way of customising the theme, so if you have add-on menu strips/items (e.g. Recorded TV HD, PowerDVD, TotalMedia Theatre, etc.) then I don't think these are going to match.
As mentioned above, Media Center Themer can be used to add or customize menu strips and other elements. It will work in conjunction with UI+.
IT Troll wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:59 pm
Playback of Recorded TV has an Evaluation Copy watermark which I guess goes away if you Activate your installation.
Correct. Once the installation is activated, extra features are enabled and the watermark is removed.
IT Troll wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:59 pm
The subtitle visibility option may be of benefit to some but I was hoping this might extend to videos. Giving Media Center a way to control subtitle visibility in MKV files would be a killer feature.
This is a possibility. Currently, the option applies to live and recorded TV playback.
RyC wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:45 pm
I got running in a VM and it looks pretty slick. It also seems to work in extenders!

I'm really liking this so far.
Thanks for your feedback!
-Mike

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#10

Post by RyC » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:49 pm

A few more issues I've found:

1. I'm not seeing some of the additional program information in some of the screenshots on the website. On the Family Guy screenshot on the right sidebar, it lists "Moods, Characters, Settings, Subjects", but I don't see that showing up on any existing recordings. The supplemental program data is turned on and pointed to EPG123, but looking at the JSON, it doesn't seem like that info is in there.

2. I copy all recordings to a NAS after they're recorded, which for some reason causes WMC to change the channel number slightly. A ".0" is appended to the channel number for all recordings that are moved to the NAS. Channel 703 would show up in WMC as "703.0" in the recording info, for example. This seems to cause the logo to not load and be replaced with the callsign in the recording info screen. I've attached a screenshot showing this.

Also, I donated but haven't received an activation code yet. Does the code take a while to send?
logoexists.png
Logo for channel 703 exists
Attachments
missinglogo.png
Channel 703.0
Last edited by RyC on Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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#11

Post by theforestman » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:56 pm

Hi Thanks for all your hard work.

I have also problems with a dutch install of mediacenter.
Afther install mediacenter will not start.
When i turn of the theme mediacenter will start again.

I have installed mediacenter on Windows 10 pro NL is this supported?

Regards,

Jeroen

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#12

Post by garyan2 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:06 pm

RyC wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:49 pm
1. I'm not seeing some of the additional program information in some of the screenshots on the website. On the Family Guy screenshot on the right sidebar, it lists "Moods, Characters, Settings, Subjects", but I don't see that showing up on any existing recordings. The supplemental program data is turned on and pointed to EPG123, but looking at the JSON, it doesn't seem like that info is in there.
I can talk to this one. Currently, the extra series information is only for those series that have generic episodes in the guide. I will be adding to EPG123 to make additional calls to SD to get that information for the rest of the series, probably release later this week. Now that I see how it is used, and figured how I will "cache" this information to avoid requesting 1000's of more programs from SD for each update run, I should be able to whip something up.

EDIT: I should have read further... the extra information will not be there for recordings unless the program is also currently in the guide somewhere. Mike may be able to clarify.
- Gary
Stomping out the Rovi disease, one media center at a time. http://epg123.garyan2.net

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#13

Post by RyC » Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:20 pm

Thanks for the clarification Gary!

I have one more bug to report: it appears series descriptions are being cut off after the 513th character or so. I'm not sure whether this is a WMC bug though since series descriptions are a little hard to find in stock WMC and I've never taken a close look. I've attached another screenshot where it gets cut off after "-- he's a" (it should finish with "'fixer' of sticky situations -- that Jimmy soon learns to appreciate.")

I've checked this with a few series' and all the ones with long descriptions seem to get cut off right at 513 (or 512 maybe)
seriesdesc.png

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#14

Post by garyan2 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:23 pm

RyC wrote:Thanks for the clarification Gary!

I have one more bug to report: it appears series descriptions are being cut off after the 513th character or so. I'm not sure whether this is a WMC bug though since series descriptions are a little hard to find in stock WMC and I've never taken a close look. I've attached another screenshot where it gets cut off after "-- he's a" (it should finish with "'fixer' of sticky situations -- that Jimmy soon learns to appreciate.")
seriesdesc.png
WMC has a 512 character limit for series description while SD can have up to 1000 characters. Not a real, nor certainly elegant solution to that.
- Gary
Stomping out the Rovi disease, one media center at a time. http://epg123.garyan2.net

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#15

Post by allblackhtpc » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:10 pm

Great new addition to WMC.

Does this work in conjunction with tweaks from the standard UI app or does it include those? Namely 4K high res warning message, live tv buffer length and customized wtv filenames?

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#16

Post by W10MC » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:40 pm

RyC wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:49 pm
1. I'm not seeing some of the additional program information in some of the screenshots on the website.
For recorded TV, WMC seems to use embedded metadata from the WTV file instead of the guide data. Unfortunately, this results in only a subset of the information being available for recordings. In addition, the link to the channel logo is missing, which causes the callsign to be shown in its place. This data would need to be cached somehow in order to display the full program information for recordings.
RyC wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:49 pm
2. I copy all recordings to a NAS after they're recorded, which for some reason causes WMC to change the channel number slightly. A ".0" is appended to the channel number for all recordings that are moved to the NAS.
This is another quirk with WMC. It tends to do this when a WTV file is moved or if the database is deleted and recreated.
RyC wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:49 pm
Also, I donated but haven't received an activation code yet. Does the code take a while to send?
Sorry for the delay. It has been sent. Just took a little longer as it's the first day of availability. Typically the code will be sent almost immediately.
theforestman wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:56 pm
I have also problems with a dutch install of mediacenter.
Afther install mediacenter will not start.
When i turn of the theme mediacenter will start again.

I have installed mediacenter on Windows 10 pro NL is this supported?
It should be supported, but this will require further investigation. If you would like to troubleshoot, you can do the following:

1. Disable the theme and make sure Media Center is running normally again

2. Optionally zip and upload these files, usually located in C:\Windows\ehome, to a file host like OneDrive:

ehres.dll
Microsoft.MediaCenter.Shell.dll
Microsoft.MediaCenter.UI.dll

Being able to examine the native WMC files on your system could help determine the cause of the problem.
allblackhtpc wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:10 pm
Does this work in conjunction with tweaks from the standard UI app or does it include those? Namely 4K high res warning message, live tv buffer length and customized wtv filenames?
The two apps are designed to be used together. ModernMedia UI provides customization of various settings including those you noted, while UI+ offers mostly new functionality as well as the modern theme. Specifically regarding the high resolution warning on 4K and higher displays, it does not always "stick" using the standard registry tweaks in the UI app, but the message is permanently removed with the UI+ theme enabled, at least on English-language systems.
-Mike

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#17

Post by RyC » Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:52 am

Thanks Mike, I have a few more things I found related to extenders:

All of the guide colors (fill color when highlighted and underlines) except for the "Series" blue seem to be missing on extenders (and Remote Desktop). See Pocahontas not being filled in with red, and missing guide colored underlines on nearly all other programs on the screen that aren't "Series" - should be green since mostly sports on this view. "My 600lb Life" is properly underlined in blue and properly fills in the blue color when hovered over, for example.

Image

This ONLY happens on extenders (and RDC). Both the programs are correctly filled in and the guide underlines are present if I check on the computer itself, so hopefully this is a quick fix since the "Series" blue is working on extenders. It looks much better with the proper underlines and shading.

Image

Second issue I've seen on extenders is the Info mini bar on live and recorded programs is completely transparent.
Image

The channel mini bar that pops up when you first tune a live TV channel is properly shaded though.

Hopefully these issues are a quick and easy fix, the guide coloring on extenders especially. I really like the redesigned guide.

Also, is it possible for UI+ to recognize that ".0" channels are the same as the normal channels to get logos back in recorded programs? Thanks so much for bearing with me as I report all this :D

EDIT: my attachments keep getting messed up somehow - linked to imgur instead

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#18

Post by W10MC » Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:40 am

RyC wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:52 am
All of the guide colors (fill color when highlighted and underlines) except for the "Series" blue seem to be missing on extenders (and Remote Desktop).
Just to be sure, can you temporarily disable Media Center Themer and then re-open WMC and the Extenders to see if it changes anything?
RyC wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:52 am
Also, is it possible for UI+ to recognize that ".0" channels are the same as the normal channels to get logos back in recorded programs?
I'm currently looking into this to see what can be done to display the logos on recordings.
-Mike

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#19

Post by RyC » Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:50 am

W10MC wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:40 am
RyC wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:52 am
All of the guide colors (fill color when highlighted and underlines) except for the "Series" blue seem to be missing on extenders (and Remote Desktop).
Just to be sure, can you temporarily disable Media Center Themer and then re-open WMC and the Extenders to see if it changes anything?
I turned off MCT in the registry, restarted the computer, and checked the Extender (and verified the MCT customizations were disabled). Still no colors/underlines for non "Series" programs in the guide.

EDIT: This issue is also present in the single channel view.

Extender: https://i.imgur.com/V15X03Z.png

Main Computer: https://i.imgur.com/CX9JOC8.png

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#20

Post by theforestman » Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:56 am

send you a PM with the link for the files.

Regards,

Jeroen

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