Setting up media libraries

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How to set Slice to organise media files into libraries

Movies and TV Shows

From the main menu, select <Files>

Select Volume Name of your hard drive

Select your media folder (eg. Movies)

Click the Ninja button (top-right on remote)

Select <Set content>

Select <This directory contains...> (eg. Movies)

Select OK

Slice will then 'scrape' (database lookup) the filenames to get movie info for your library. Repeat as required for other folders. IMPORTANT - make sure you select the correct category of files so that Kodi can find the correct titles.


From the main menu, select <Music>

Select your music folder (eg. Music)

Press the <Ninja> button (top right of remote)

Select <scan items to library>

A progress bar will open at the bottom of the screen.

See below [1] for details of how to manage and tag music files.

How to create movie collections/sets

To group films and their sequels together in the Movies Library,

Goto: Setup -> XBMC Settings -> Videos - > Library

Tick <Group movies in sets>

In the library, film sets will now appear under a Collection title, eg. The Godfather Collection.

To place a movie into an existing collection, select the film and then click the Ninja button. Goto Manage -> Manage movie set and select from the list.

How to create info for custom or unscraped/incorrectly-tagged movies

There may be a home movie which cannot be scraped, or the odd film in a user's collection that does not get scraped properly, or for which a database entry does not exist. In this case, an individual NFO file can be created to provide the missing information and art in Kodi. NOTE: Kodi will only look at your NFO file ONCE. Any subsequent changes made to an NFO file will only be incorporated after a refresh. See this Kodi wiki article for more info.

The NFO file is an XML file which contains the data needed. The file should be named exactly the same as the video file to which it refers, so for 'Alien.mkv' there needs to be an 'Alien.nfo' file. Two examples for the NFO data are below: the first one is a very basic example and the second is a more complicated example. To create the NFO file, copy, paste and edit the desired information into a text editor such as Notepad, and when done, save the file with an .nfo extension (e.g. 'Alien.nfo') in the same folder as the movie. Then update the library in Slice, which will look for the NFO file first.

Basic NFO example:

       <title>Some title</title>
       <originaltitle>Some title just in case - you most likely don't need this either</originaltitle>
       <sorttitle>It will sort by this title if you include it</sorttitle>

Complicated/comprehensive NFO example:

       <title>name of film</title>
       <originaltitle>name of film</originaltitle>
       <sorttitle>name of film</sorttitle>
       <set>name of collection</set>
       <outline>A short synopsis of the film.</outline>
       <plot>A longer description</plot>
       <runtime>90</runtime> //runtime in minutes
       <mpaa>Not available</mpaa>
       <filenameandpath>/var/media/Slice-HD/Movies/file name of film.mkv</filenameandpath>
           <name>John Smith</name>

Note that the Slice path to the hard drive is: /var/media/<name of the hard drive>/Movies - the use of 'Slice-HD' is an example.

How to manage and tag music files

Managing music files in Kodi is problematic, mainly due to a lack of Kodi community support and inaccurate online databases. In addition, software to insert or correct ‘tags’ (data embedded into each song file) has appeared in many different formats.

This is therefore just one possible method available.

Folder structure

/artist/album (date)/songs + album artwork

Recommended tag editor is mp3tag [2]. It is free (donations welcome) and will edit the metadata of the most common audio formats. For more details on usage, click here [3].

The original author’s experiments with tagging and Kodi showed up numerous errors and omissions in Music Library. Further research seemed to indicate that as well as the <ALBUMARTIST> tag being required, the extended tag <ALBUMARTISTSORT> is also necessary. This can be added in Mp3Tag by right-clicking the song names and selecting <Extended Tags>. Then select <ALBUMARTISTSORT> from the drop-down menu. The name needs to be the same as in the <ALBUMARTIST> tag.

This procedure can be semi-automated by creating an Mp3Tag Action:

Select <Actions> from the main menu.

Select the <New> icon from the <Action groups> menu (top-right).

Name the <Action>.

Select the <New> icon from the next menu.

Select <Format value> from the next menu.

Select <ALBUMARTISTSORT> in the <Field> drop-down.

Select <albumartist> from the right-arrow list in the <Format> string drop-down.

Navigate back to the program with OKs.

You will now be able to batch-insert the extended tag by selecting the complete list of songs for each album and clicking <Actions> from the main page.

Having all your songs properly and consistently tagged gives the user a fighting chance of getting Kodi to recognise songs and populate the Library.

How to correct and standardise Artist Information

You will need a program called MediaElch [4]. This is also free with no ads or restrictions (donations welcome!).

MediaElch creates NFO files for each artist [5]. The file takes priority over scraped data and thus is read first by Kodi.

The NFO is created as an XML file and will be located in the <Artist Name> folder. MediaElch provides a much more user-friendly method of creating these files. As well as providing an artist bio, the program sources photos etc. It can all be edited and a different photo used.

Once the NFO files have been written, then in Kodi:

Select: Music -> Artists

Select any <Artist>.

Select the Ninja button on the remote (top right).

Select <Query info for all artists>.

Select <OK>.

How to import music playlists

Copy the playlist files from your PC to the \userdata\playlists\music folder on Slice. This folder is accessible through Windows if connected to a network.

The lists will not work yet, however, because the playlist code is ‘pointing’ to where the PC has stored the music rather than Slice. Kodi needs a small piece of code to change the path in Slice:

IMPORTANT - Lines 4 and 5 below need to be altered BY YOU to reflect the paths you are using for music files both on your PC (line 4) and your Slice (line 5).

Copy the following into Notepad or equivalent text editor:

<from>C:\Users\[User Name]\Music\</from>
<to>/var/media/[Slice Drive Name]/Music/</to>

Save the file with the EXACT name ‘advancedsettings.xml’ (without quotes) in the <userdata> folder on your Slice. Kodi reads this file on bootup [6] and will then find the corrected path in your playlist.

How to add songs to an existing playlist

Unfortunately, Kodi does not currently feature an <Add to playlist> function, so a clunky solution is required:

Load up a playlist

Navigate back to your chosen song

Press ninja button and then select <Queue item>

Go back to playlist, left click, select <Play Queue>

Select <Save>

Type in the playlist name

Press <OK> and hope you didn't type the name wrong - Kodi doesn't give you a confirmation/overwrite message!

How to clean your media libraries of deleted media

This function is easily missed but comes in very handy. It deletes any data from files now missing after the user has deleted the file or altered its title:

Select: Setup -> XBMC Settings -> Videos (or Music or Pictures)>Library

Click right arrow on remote

Select <Clean library...>