Author Topic: Colon in Titles  (Read 11087 times)

Offline A_G

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Colon in Titles
« on: May 18, 2009, 08:56:19 PM »
Would it be possible to remove the ":" from titles (eg. Movie:) and any other non-allowable characters? I have just found that this is stopping me copying to windows drives (at least I think that is the problem...).

Offline prl

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2009, 11:03:45 PM »
Which PVR? The Beyonwiz converts illegal Windows file system characters to '_' when it copies.
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Offline A_G

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2009, 08:41:43 AM »
I have a TF7100. The colon stays in the file name.

Offline tonymy01

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2009, 09:55:38 AM »
I think I will guess ICE's stance on this:  "Take it up with your PVR manufacturer" hehe.
Look, grabbing files from your PVR HDD to move to your PC is not something many people do for a start.   And it isn't ICE's business that you are doing this.   Your PVR really should be renaming the non-legal filename chars to support other operating systems when doing file transfers (but which operating systems? Windows, Linux, Macintoshes etc out there).   The ftp server on the 7100 should be modded to do this.   As for when it copies to external USB, if the USB is fat32 then it should do it, but if the media is ext2/3 then really this is a linux filesystem and so linux filenames are fine, and it is up to your ext driver you are using in windows (if you are using windows) to support the rename.
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Offline mikeathome

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2009, 12:12:59 PM »
I support the OP's request. I would think that the EPG is constructed in a way that might easily enable the colons not to be put there in the first place. If the colon is used simply as a text separator, replacing it with an underscore or space would seem to be simple and would eliminate the need for anyone to have to change firmware etc.

Offline futzle

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2009, 09:34:36 PM »
Even if the TV show's title really has a colon in it ("CSI: NY")? What about slash ("Nip/Tuck")?  What about dollar sign ("The $50000 Letterbox")? What about accented characters ("Amélie")? What about question marks ("Who Do You Think You Are?")?  Asterisks ("M*A*S*H")?  There are a lot of characters that are valid in show names that aren't valid as filenames for one filesystem or another.  The guide would be pretty ugly, and a mite inaccurate, if shows couldn't have these characters in their titles.

Every FTP client I have ever seen gives you the ability to change the filename as you transfer the file. A_G, does yours let you do that?
« Last Edit: June 01, 2009, 09:50:10 PM by futzle »

Offline mtb

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2009, 10:58:04 PM »
I support the OP's request. I would think that the EPG is constructed in a way that might easily enable the colons not to be put there in the first place. If the colon is used simply as a text separator, replacing it with an underscore or space would seem to be simple and would eliminate the need for anyone to have to change firmware etc.

Sorry, but as a software developer by profession, I'm 100% with tonymy01 on this.  You have to bear in mind that different PVRs use different operating systems - the Beyonwiz and Topfields are Linux based but what about EyeTV (Mac) and Windows Media player?  You must also consider that these devices are also required to work with the over-the-air EPG from the broadcasters - are you going to force them to comply with your naming limitations as well?  Not a hope!

To construct an EPG which complies with the file system limitations of each and every PVR and every conceivable target o/s out there would be a nightmare;  what about the new file systems as they appear - ext4 has just arrived in the Linux world and doesn't Vista/W7 have some new file system (or is that still a "pending" feature)?  How about DOS - the good old 8.3 filename, eh?  Where do you stop?

No, sorry, but to use your approach is to dumb down the EPG (and potentially the PVR) to an inefficient level - equivalent to forcing all bands continue to release on vinyl because some people don't want to connect a CD player to their HiFi.

The EPG is there purely to provide guide data on the PVR's display (which it does) and to set legitimate PVR recordings (which it also does), after that it becomes the manufacturers' responsibility how they use that data and store the recordings and, finally, yours.  As Tony suggests, you might want to look around for a better FTP client if yours cannot transfer from a Linux file system to Windows without generating illegal filenames on the target.  

Or perhaps you could ask Topfield to change the file system from ext3 to FAT32, hmm...?
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Offline prl

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2009, 10:31:17 AM »
...
Or perhaps you could ask Topfield to change the file system from ext3 to FAT32, hmm...?
The PVR file system name is not necessarily the recording name. On Beyonwiz, the internal HDD is a FAT32 file system (with a very large cluster size), so the names of the folder holding a recording's data has nothing to do with the title, unless the user modifies the title. The title of the recording is stored in a header file and is not restricted by the PVR's file system naming rules. On the Topfield, the recording title is used as the recording file's name, but because it's on a file system with traditional Unix naming, the only characters not allowed in the name are NUL and '/'.

But I agree with the rest of your post and Tony's. File name mappings when doing a network transfer from one file system naming convention to another are the responsibility of the file transfer client. I've written such a client for the Beyonwiz, and it does take care of these mappings.

Offline A_G

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2009, 11:45:59 AM »
Thanks everyone for the clarification. I hadn't considered all the different TV titles and I now see that this request would be one that is most definitely not feasible.

I hadn't thought about FTP as I generally don't use it (the TF7100 is horribly slow!) but do direct transfers. I guess the best solution would be for me to manually change the file name on the PVR before I copy.

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2009, 02:57:08 PM »
I hadn't thought about FTP as I generally don't use it (the TF7100 is horribly slow!)

Define horribly slow?

Perhaps horribly slow compared to a Gigabit connection!
I've found the 7100 to be much faster doing transfers than most pvr type devices with a 10/100 Network port.

Offline prl

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2009, 03:57:07 PM »
...
I've found the 7100 to be much faster doing transfers than most pvr type devices with a 10/100 Network port.

Damning with faint praise :)

But Vortical is correct, from all the reports I've seen (I don't have a TF7100) the TF7100's file transfer is considerably faster than any of the Beyonwiz PVRs.

Offline A_G

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2009, 04:33:39 PM »
I should point out that i am using wireless. Last time I wanted to transfer a lot of files (to upgrade to the latest firmware) I found it quicker to transfer from the PVR to external storage and then transfer again to another drive (I wanted to play on another TV using WD HD player) rather than FTP.

Generally the only time I will use FTP is if I only want to transfer one or two files, otherwise it is too slow and painful...

Offline prl

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2009, 05:01:45 PM »
I should point out that i am using wireless. ...
But then is the problem simply that 802.11g wireless is slow - theoretical maximum ~3.5MB/s in infrastructure mode, typically much less?

Offline mikeathome

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2009, 06:09:17 PM »
I support the OP's request. I would think that the EPG is constructed in a way that might easily enable the colons not to be put there in the first place. If the colon is used simply as a text separator, replacing it with an underscore or space would seem to be simple and would eliminate the need for anyone to have to change firmware etc.

Sorry, but as a software developer by profession, I'm 100% with tonymy01 on this.  You have to bear in mind that different PVRs use different operating systems - the Beyonwiz and Topfields are Linux based but what about EyeTV (Mac) and Windows Media player?  You must also consider that these devices are also required to work with the over-the-air EPG from the broadcasters - are you going to force them to comply with your naming limitations as well?  Not a hope!

To construct an EPG which complies with the file system limitations of each and every PVR and every conceivable target o/s out there would be a nightmare;  what about the new file systems as they appear - ext4 has just arrived in the Linux world and doesn't Vista/W7 have some new file system (or is that still a "pending" feature)?  How about DOS - the good old 8.3 filename, eh?  Where do you stop?

No, sorry, but to use your approach is to dumb down the EPG (and potentially the PVR) to an inefficient level - equivalent to forcing all bands continue to release on vinyl because some people don't want to connect a CD player to their HiFi.

The EPG is there purely to provide guide data on the PVR's display (which it does) and to set legitimate PVR recordings (which it also does), after that it becomes the manufacturers' responsibility how they use that data and store the recordings and, finally, yours.  As Tony suggests, you might want to look around for a better FTP client if yours cannot transfer from a Linux file system to Windows without generating illegal filenames on the target.  

Or perhaps you could ask Topfield to change the file system from ext3 to FAT32, hmm...?

I have a Topfield 7100 and regularly copy files to my PC. Somebody has apparently developed the convention where, for some types of shows, a colon is put after an initial descriptor and then followed by the name of the show. EG Movie: show name, Motor sport: show name, etc etc. But in other cases we just see the show name. To me there is a difference between the situation where a special character naturally appears in the show name and where the special character is apparently deliberately inserted. The vast majority of show names do not have special characters in them and so the main issue, for me and I suggest most others, is the colon.

So if someone thinks that it would be too hard/messy to solve 100% of the problem by removing or substituting all special characters then surely it would help meet user needs to just deal with the colon. And it may be that the solution to at least this part of the problem does not have to involve software development at all - just ask whoever it is that types in the colon not to.

Offline mtb

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Re: Colon in Titles
« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2009, 02:32:25 PM »
So if someone thinks that it would be too hard/messy to solve 100% of the problem by removing or substituting all special characters then surely it would help meet user needs to just deal with the colon. And it may be that the solution to at least this part of the problem does not have to involve software development at all - just ask whoever it is that types in the colon not to.
Ok, for such attributes as "Movie:" or "Sport:" which are 'value added' to the EPG there could be grounds to say that the EPG should not include the ":" character because it might cause problem on some devices, but only the ones which use the show name as file name and use the more limited file systems.  Nonetheless, you are still left with the issue of how to deal with scenario where the actual program name includes a character which is illegal on some potential target file system but not necessarily on the one on which the file is recorded/created;  to list the program name incorrectly will cause far more headaches for the majority of users (many of whom may not ever copy the files off their devices) than the occasional bad character appeaing for the minority who do and for whom there is a relatively simple workaround.

For those devices which use the show name in an unmodified form for the filename - for the sake of clarity, perhaps - there will always be the opportunity for some obscure character to get in there;  screen writers seem to be becoming more creative all the time with show names, just wait for the first episode of $@^*?<>!= {(c) mtb 2009} to appear.

This is not really an Ice issue, if anything it is an issue you should take up with the PVR manufacturer since it is their choice how they name the files.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2009, 02:37:10 PM by mtb »


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