Release 0.5.14: Bugfixing bonanza

08.29.08 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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  • Great GUI :)

    The only feature I miss is iTunes/iPhoto integration.

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

  • 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.

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

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

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

  • Great news!!

  • hello.

    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

  • @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.

  • 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.

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

  • @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 =)

  • @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!

  • 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).

  • 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

    • @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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