Release 0.5.14: Bugfixing bonanza - Plex Blog

Release 0.5.14: Bugfixing bonanza

| 29 Aug 2008 | by 76 Comments

First of all, a huge thank you to our group of testers. We recruited 10 people who know Plex inside out and are major contributors to the forums, and they were kind enough to spend time putting the new release through its paces. So ChoccyHubNub, jayman978, phunkysai, jeremymc7, Mikey, Vengeancegoon, teh.hippy, Cranial Lethargy, BigBadWolf, and Sirreef, you all rock! (Frosty, I didn’t was to harass you because I know you’ve been busy.)

Second thing, we’ve slightly tweaked the way we do version numbering. What we’d like to do is ensure two things: that you always have a stable version of Plex to download (which gets bug-fixes), and that you have access to more bleeding edge versions (with new features). To this end, odd version numbers (0.5.x, 0.7.x, 0.9.x) will always be bleeding edge versions, and even version numbers (0.6.x, 0.8.x, 1.0.x) will be stable versions. This is identical to the system that Linux used to use. This is the 14th release of the 0.5 series, and I hope it proves stable enough so that we can release the first of the 0.6 series soon.

You’ll also note new branding, new icons, splash screen, DMG background, all courtesy of the talented Alexis Gallisá. He’s worked hard not only on the branding, but the new Plex website (where you can find download and source links).

Last, but not least, you’ll note that we have said goodbye to Project Mayhem III as a default skin. Team Razorfish has very graciously allowed us to use the lovely MediaStream skin as the default skin for Plex. Note that if you have any problems with the skin, or feature requests, please report them on the Plex forums!

NOTE A few things for this release: You’ll probably want to delete your local copy of MediaStream if you have it installed in Application Support/Plex/skin (so as to avoid having two copies). Similarly, you’ll want to move Project Mayhem III into Application Support/Plex/skin (if you want to keep it around). Also, in order to obtain full fanart support (automatically scraped fanart), you’ll want to follow the procedure outlined by Isaac here, or else blow away your library and start over from scratch. Isaac, you rule, thanks for all the help getting this release out the door!!

  • NEW: Ability to configure the number of recent video and audio items returned in library mode.
  • NEW: Fatal errors are displayed in a popup dialog box, instead of causing the application to crash.
  • NEW: Our newest contributor, Pundy, added the ability to sleep the Mac directly from the shutdown menu. Nice job!
  • FIX: Annoying crash reading replaygain tags from MP3 files.
  • FIX: Hang exiting the app using the dock menu, or with Applescript.
  • FIX: Using “Open With…” to open media files with Plex should work again.
  • FIX: Cmd-F works to toggle full-screen mode even if you’ve remapped the backslash key.
  • FIX: Starting Plex with the screensaver active will turn it off.
  • FIX: Manually browsing for subtitles exits the player.
  • FIX: Crashes in ffmpeg playing various files (e.g. MS-DVR samples, King of Queens sample, Odd Couple sample).
  • FIX: Locking bug in SMB resulting in crashes (fixed nearly simultaneously by my buddy vulkanr!)
  • FIX: Crash on startup if you had multiple RSS feeds (this took about ten frustrating hours to track down).
  • FIX: Apple Remote causes Front Row to start/system volume indicator. I believe this one is finally nailed. Thanks to the people who tested it.
  • FIX: RAW file threading issues, leading to some loading of RAW files to fail.
  • FIX: VIDEO_TS directories stack correctly and allow direct playing, thanks to dtmetz!
  • FIX: DTS music files (thanks to spiff) and AC3 music files now play correctly, although only the former in 5.1.
  • FIX: We call the Crash Reporter installer as an external entity so as to properly comply with the GPL. Thanks to Enrique for throwing a patch together so quickly. He also fixed a bug relating to installing the Plex helper.
  • FIX: The XBox360 controller can now scan through files properly with the left thumbstick and exit with the big “X” button.
  • FIX: Apple Movie Trailer plug-ins now install properly.
  • FIX: The Apple Remote menu key (and backspace key) were unable to get you out of an empty movie/TV library.

Of course we’ve also pulled lots of good stuff over from the XBMC tree including some Bluray-related enhancements (find and use DTS-HD streams, by elupus), fanart and skinning enhancements (spiff and others), and fixes including the annoying ff/rew hang bug, fast text scrolling (jmarshall, who also fixed a ton of bugs), and lots of Python stability fixes by vulkanr: you rock, Python (and lots of other things) would not be stable without you!

And here’s your Barkley!

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76 Comments so far

  1. Art Vandelay August 29th, 2008 11:52 am

    Woohooo! Thanks….I’ve been waiting for this one.

  2. Mickey August 29th, 2008 12:06 pm

    Many thanks to the whole team!

  3. rickler August 29th, 2008 12:15 pm

    Excellent – This is amazing stuff. But wheres Barkley?

  4. elan August 29th, 2008 12:19 pm

    @rickler: Ack! How could I have forgotten?

  5. WolfieNuke August 29th, 2008 12:39 pm

    Thank you so much Elan and everyone else who contributed. Your work has been second to none!

    Unfortunately I am currently on the road with work and can’t access my large library on the road due to limited bandwidth, but I am anxiously wanting to go home just for this Plex release!

    Great work on the logo as well!

    I usually try to support freeware developers whose software I make part of my daily life, and I will be doing so soon. I just hope it goes towards a decent beer – maybe Kilkenny? I forgot how to spell that one, since it is not imported to the US.

  6. ww August 29th, 2008 12:55 pm

    A big thank you as always to Elan another great release.

    Also really pleased that you have highlighted your testers contribution. I didn’t know what else they did but to me the great thing about this project apart from an amazing app is the incrediably friendly, helpful, welcoming forums and these guys along with Isaac are its backbone. It can be quite daunting to come in to a something like this and make your first post asking what seems to you as a pretty stupid newbie question but you guys are always curtious and understanding. Grateful to you all.

  7. PharCyder August 29th, 2008 1:35 pm

    Thank you soooooooooo much. You have no idea how much we all appreciate the hard work that goes into this.

    You should all seriously charge for this application. :-)

  8. Mickey August 29th, 2008 1:40 pm

    That UI is SEXY! Awesome work, everyone!

  9. muzo178 August 29th, 2008 1:50 pm

    The new site looks fab. The new release looks ace. The team is fantastic. Barkley is our sweetheart.

    Apple should start paying attention ;)


    There, I said it..

    PS: i’m away for the weekend, but can’t wait to get home to try this…

  10. fall-line August 29th, 2008 2:14 pm

    Wow – the new skin looks amazing. Great looking bunch of fixes/new features in this release. Can’t wait to try it out tonight.
    Time for more beer!

  11. Jelly August 29th, 2008 2:28 pm

    Nice work guys :D Gave it a quick test drive, now just rebuilding my library (lots of custom names etc :( ).

    I’ll be sending some electronic drinking vouchers your way asap ;p

  12. thedroid August 29th, 2008 2:53 pm


    And just in time, something to play with while locked up inside waiting for hurricane Gustav to come and go.

  13. iordonez August 29th, 2008 3:49 pm

    @ ww

    Thanks for the kind words!

  14. Francky August 29th, 2008 4:05 pm

    Wow, this looks awesome. Thanks so much for all the hard work.

    But am I the only one having Plex ask for “screensaverengine” every time it starts ? What the heck is that, lol

  15. elan August 29th, 2008 4:09 pm

    @Francky: Oh, interesting, the app turns off the running screensaver when started. So it asks for permission? It is signed, so unless you modified the contents of the application bundle, you should be able to prevent it from asking more than once. If you’re still having trouble, please come to the forums and discuss.

  16. Vengeancegoon August 29th, 2008 4:49 pm


    Get Smithwick’s, pretty much the same beer as Kilkenny. Trust me on this :)

    Yay to all the team! This version is sweet, just in time for Boy’s night Elan. Isaac & I would thank you, but we’re watching Postal tonight so maybe we won’t be so happy after, hehe.

  17. Chris August 29th, 2008 6:45 pm

    Fantastic release! The new branding is just spectacular. Looks very professional.

    Good choice with MediaStream as the default. No longer will I have to keep updating it with Plex!

  18. Tenttu August 29th, 2008 6:55 pm

    How can i get subtitles working with Ö and Ä?

  19. elan August 29th, 2008 6:59 pm

    @Tenttu: Please head to the forums, and post more information about your configuration.

  20. niklas August 29th, 2008 9:27 pm

    Thanks, this came at a perfect time for me. I am going to use it tonight.

  21. Allards August 29th, 2008 9:54 pm

    Many thanks to the team, PLEX is the best and only application for HT MM!

  22. tsin_tsi August 29th, 2008 10:49 pm

    Hmmm, it looks nice, but I’m unable to get to the settings and on/off part of plex, hence making it useless until i can configure the audio output, anyone else experiencing this?

  23. Rez August 29th, 2008 10:58 pm

    Overall I love the new Skin. There are only two things I’m not too fond of:

    - The file column when browsing videos is just too narrow. Is there a way to make it wider?

    and more importantly:

    - The photo of the “use your programs” section is a big no no! (My heart skipped a few beats the first time I laid eyes on it. ;-)

  24. tsin_tsi August 29th, 2008 11:13 pm

    OK, i figured it out myself after a few reinstalls and reboots, settings and on/off menu isn’t clickable with mouse, only with keyboard (and presumably with remote as well)… But anyhow, thanks for a great app!

  25. elan August 29th, 2008 11:16 pm

    @tsin_tsi: Haven’t experienced that myself. Head to the forums for more help.

    @Rez: Ha! That’s why the Programs section is turned off by default :)

  26. elan August 29th, 2008 11:17 pm

    @tsin_tsi: Ah, gotcha. I recommend you come to the MediaStream section of our forum. The authors of the skin are a really great bunch, and update the skin often, so they’ll likely want to hear about it.

  27. massive August 30th, 2008 12:04 am

    Thanks to the whole team! Great news, I’ve been waiting since last release.

  28. Atrus August 30th, 2008 1:38 am

    Am I the only one who has problems with the comments on this site. They look all scrambled. For example, Elans comment right above mine now (the last one posted when I am writing this) is actually appearing underneath the fields in “Leave a reply”. A lot of other weird things is happening as well here in the comments.
    Im using Firefox on a freaking PC… I know. But still…

  29. Randy August 30th, 2008 2:25 am

    Awesome release, but I’m encountering a bug. Suddenly since upgrading from the RC3 to this release my RAR’d movies will not play. I hit enter, nothing happens, try it on a few different files, and suddenly a failure message pops up? Anyone else having this problem? Extracted RARs seem to work, but this was one of my favorite features of plex and now its not working… any help on this?

  30. Martin August 30th, 2008 2:28 am

    There seems to be some remote problems with this new release.

    Buttons not responding, etc.

    I have posted about it in the Bug forum.

    PS. The new Web site looks Amazing!

    /Martin :)

  31. Polcius August 30th, 2008 6:49 am

    Still no “FAT OUTLINE” subtitle effect.

    I’m a bit disappointed, since every movie player on Mac has it.

    VLC, Movist, Mplayer…

    Is it so difficult to add?

  32. maxrogers August 30th, 2008 7:04 am

    Elan and crew,

    That was the MOST INCREDIBLE experience I have had since I switched to a mac! Seriously, I just so happened to have a load of friends over just as I loaded up the new version. They all proceeded to poop their pants over how amazing access to all my media is!

    Incredible work you guys! The interface is tremendous (so polished!) and the backengine feels so well-tuned in this version! It just feels miles ahead of anything I’ve experienced yet in media management! Awesome work! Really Awesome!!! Just wait until the general world takes notice of the update… it’s going to be BIG!!!

  33. flashpaul August 30th, 2008 12:31 pm


    Im using Firefox on a freaking PC also and some of the comments are mashed , especially the date field

  34. migueld August 30th, 2008 5:14 pm

    Ehhhhh I’m still trying to figure out how this new skin works, it feels it’s very unintuitive. The navigation doesn’t feel linear, there is lots of jumping around…Panel Stream view shows “no thumb” icons for the back button as well as blank folders. In Project Mayhem III they were shown as an arrow icon, and folder icon respectively. This is very disorienting because it’s hard to navigate with generic icons.

    Panel Stream… who came up with that name? :P Why not Thumb View, or Icon view, or something more clear? :D

    Anyway I’ll probably make a thread with all the little and not so little annoyances.

  35. jayman978 August 30th, 2008 6:44 pm

    I am assuming that you are using Firefox 2 on a PC? The issue is a known problem.

  36. dk August 30th, 2008 9:02 pm

    Elan, amazing job.

    And MediaStream is such a huge step up from PMIII. It could use a few tweaks and fixes here and there; I agree with migueld that the View options aren’t quite as intuitive as they should be.

    iTunes and EyeTV integration soon?

  37. Clasu August 30th, 2008 9:58 pm

    i just spottet a little text thing. Idont know how to report bugs through official channels, so ill just drop it here.
    In the “System” -> “Master Lock” pane it says “Shut down xbox when…”. I guess the xbox par t should be Mac now, right ;)

  38. Soner August 31st, 2008 12:20 am

    Elan, there is a bug with all the letters like é è à (french letters). They don’t appear normally, at there place there is strange letters.

    (excuse me for my english)

  39. SR August 31st, 2008 12:27 am

    Awesome! Great work! New skin made it a little bit harder to use Dinovo mini thought, seems like other keyboard, mouse functionality.

  40. Niklas August 31st, 2008 6:40 am

    The new skin is a huge improvement visually from PMIII, very nice! :)

    But what happened with that CenterStage thing, is this new skin just an interim default skin until CenterStage are have completed their skin?

  41. Arnout August 31st, 2008 7:44 am

    Very nice new version, all issues like FF/RW and pause high CPU usage have all been fixed. When using the Apple Movie Trailers script the only thing I see is that the movie poster thumbnails don’t come up. Is that a skin or Plex issue or am I doing something wrong?

  42. ConPermiso August 31st, 2008 9:00 am

    awesome update…Plex has replaced VLC as my media player of choice, and this update confirms my excellent judgement :D

  43. mingistech August 31st, 2008 10:23 am

    I love the work you’ve been doing it’s amazing… but I must say this is the coolest looking but most annoying release of plex so far.

    Adding a specific default for my movies then my tv shows separate seems like an impossible task under this new release. I’ve been an xbmc user since the early days on the original xbox and adding a dir for each section has never been this difficult. Editing the .xml files was more intuitive. I’m not sure if it’s the backwards was mediastream set up their skin or a bug… but it’s just not working for me.

    I guess i’ll be hitting the forums to see if the community is having the same headaches as myself.

    You are an amazing developer and i’m sure this app will grow into something amazing.

  44. Daniel August 31st, 2008 11:16 am

    Hi, I cannont get any of my movies playing with this new version… I have started from scratch, but that doesn’t fix it either. I have all my movies (most of them are VIDEO_TS) on a network share and it always worked like a charm. Anybody any clue what’s wrong?

    Love the new skin by the way!

  45. elan August 31st, 2008 11:31 am

    @Daniel: Sorry man, known regression, will be fixed shortly.

  46. Daniel August 31st, 2008 11:37 am

    Thanx for you fast reply! Is it an issue with the SMB sharing? Should I stick with the previous version for now?

  47. Daniel August 31st, 2008 11:51 am

    Sorry man for flooding the comments, seen this issue is discussed over at the forums…will continue there! Thanx!

  48. Andy August 31st, 2008 12:34 pm

    Great work, this seems better able to tackle playing larger files. I know that you’re moving away from Project Mayhem, but is there any chance you could leave it in as an alternate theme until this new one has the bumps smoothed out?

  49. Andy August 31st, 2008 12:49 pm

    Oh, I just want to note that Project Mayhem allows me to more directly increase the font on my TV, at 720p all the words are tiny, even if I bump up the font size to “Massive.”

  50. elan August 31st, 2008 2:27 pm

    @Andy: We don’t want to make the download even more massive than it already is, hence why we’re asking PMIII users to keep it around in their Application Support.

    @Arnout: Known issue, will be fixed in the next version.

  51. Soner August 31st, 2008 9:30 pm

    Elan, did you see what i wrote before ?

    i quote myself :

    Elan, there is a bug with all the letters like é è à ù(french letters). They don’t appear normally, at there place there is strange letters.

    (excuse me for my english)

    I downgraded to the previous version, and the bug is not present on this one.

  52. elan August 31st, 2008 9:38 pm

    @Soner: I believe this is possibly a MediaStream bug that’s to be fixed soon. Does the problem occur with the Project Mayhem III as well?

    I’ve heard reports of people selecting Arial font as a workaround.

  53. Soner September 1st, 2008 6:52 am

    The problem appear with PM3 and Aeon too. In fact i’am using only Aeon.

  54. Andy September 1st, 2008 8:16 am

    @ Elan, cool, believe it or not I was having some problems finding PM3 online, the original skinner seems to have removed it from his site. In any case, being able to scale the fonts up on the default font would be a big help. Thanks again for all of your help!

  55. Andy September 1st, 2008 8:17 am

    second font = skin ;-P

  56. Mickey September 1st, 2008 11:08 am

    @Andy: you may take PMIII from the previous (RC3) version of Plex ;)

  57. Mickey September 1st, 2008 11:11 am

    @Soner: I use french subtitles too, and I have no such problem. I use PMIII as the skin and Arial 28 BOLD yellow for the font.

  58. Pacino September 1st, 2008 12:58 pm

    Would be nice if it displays Chinese correctly.

  59. sunny September 1st, 2008 5:54 pm

    I just found out about Plex today. The install was flawless, everything works great! The Plex has done a great job, it works and feels like a native mac app. I didn’t even look at menu.

    only own hard part was getting the IMBD to work, but the wiki documented it well.


    keep up the great work!

  60. Jereme September 1st, 2008 7:29 pm

    This release was a tremendous step up. The only problem with it is where I don’t have HDTV, and that’s my own issue.

    If you guys add back fully functional DVD support eventually, this will be unbeatable.

    Dare I say it, but I don’t even see where CenterStage is relevant after seeing this new theme.

    Great job! Bravo! hip hip!

  61. Przemek September 2nd, 2008 2:17 am

    Great GUI :)

    The only feature I miss is iTunes/iPhoto integration.

  62. Gentoo September 2nd, 2008 7:41 am

    Beautiful.. It works smoothly with the new skin. Awesome guys.

  63. Phullup September 2nd, 2008 8:55 am

    Could someone please clarify for me: do DVD .ISO files on a network share still work with this new version?
    There’s a couple of comments above about TS folders not working and no DVD support (but is that from disc?)

    If they do still work I’ll upgrade to the new version like a shot!

    As ever, thanks for all your hard work on this.

  64. elan September 2nd, 2008 11:15 am

    @Phullup: Not working over network, but the new release (which fixes the problem) is currently in testing.

  65. Phullup September 2nd, 2008 11:41 am

    Great! Thanks for that.
    I’m looking forward to see the new skin.

  66. Andy September 2nd, 2008 4:07 pm

    @ Mickey, thank you for the tip, I snagged PMIII from the package contents of an older download. Thanks for all your hard work Elan!

  67. Jordi September 2nd, 2008 11:19 pm

    Great news!!

  68. pippo September 2nd, 2008 11:37 pm


    Very nice work indeed, the new skin looks really great.

    It is possible for the user to add more fonts to those available?

    And to modify the key bindings? I find that the skin behaves somehow unnaturally wrt mouse clicks

  69. elan September 2nd, 2008 11:43 pm

    @pippo: Thanks, we also love the work Team Razorfish did, it’s a really lovely skin.

    As for mouse clicks, the skin is better used with a remote, at least that’s what I’ve found.

  70. pippo September 3rd, 2008 12:34 am

    thanks. As for the fonts, I was referring to the fonts used for subtitles display, sorry that wasn’t so clear in my message above.

  71. Rob September 3rd, 2008 2:58 am

    Hey is Barkley a Rhodesian Ridgeback? We’ve got a Ridge mix. Aren’t they just big teddy bears?!

  72. Atrus September 3rd, 2008 5:31 am

    @elan: May I suggest somthing (which I guess you already pondered, but nevertheless still important to address). The testers that you have managed to talk into this should benefit greatly with a test checklist. Containing the formats to test from local drives and network drives.

    * The different persons should be from different countries so subtitles can be tried with each version and each format.

    * A few should have minis, and a few laptops and a few iMacs.

    I guess you can come up with 50 different tests of course. But at least this document should include everything basic (everything needed to play files from different locations). The rest is “non-essential” for a specific version.

    Just my 2 cents. I check this site 5 times a day to see if there is some new info. You have really managed to catch my interest =)

  73. elan September 3rd, 2008 10:32 am

    @Rob: Yeah, Ridgeback + Bullmastiff. Total teddy bear, thinks he’s a little lapdog.

    @Atrus: Excellent points all around. I’m hoping to eventually replace some of what the testers do with some automated regression testing also. Nothing beats a computer for doing boring repetitive work!

  74. pippo September 9th, 2008 10:33 pm

    Sorry to insist, but can anybody explain how to use a DVD as source, and also video files burned on a disk medium? I must be doing something wrong.

    BTW, yesterday I found the following problem: while adding a video source, I mistyped the path, so that PLEX could not find it. Yet, the error message I got on screen systematically was: “No network connection, add source anyway?” (not literally, I don’t remember the exact words, this was the sense of the message).

  75. Verne Lindner April 6th, 2009 6:25 am

    I just stumbled on your site by accident and your dog Barkley looks identical to a dog I inherited last summer. Can you me tell me what kind of dog this is?
    (I apologize if this is a silly question to ask in a serious forum). Thanks, Verne

  76. elan April 6th, 2009 8:25 am

    @Verne: It’s a serious question :-) To the best of our knowledge he’s bullmastiff x american staffordshire. Would love to see photos, drop a link or send me an email.

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