The release of 1.2.0 beta is a big milestone in the MP 1.2.0 development cycle. During its development we had to make a few tough decisions, which ultimately resulted in a lot of work and delays, yet also brought MP1 to a completely new level of usability.
Notable Changes since 1.2.0 alpha
It would be too much to list all changes between 1.1.0 and 1.2.0. So the following list will focus on what happened since the release of 1.2.0 Alpha.
Find out about the changes introduced in 1.2.0 Alpha in this separate news.
Plugin Version Check
The biggest change in usability is our new version check for plugins. From 1.2.0 beta on, users will never again face the problem of having a plugin enabled which is incompatible with the installed version of MP.
- Because of this change, none of your currently installed plugins will work with 1.2.0 beta. They will all get disabled and appear in a new section in the Configuration Tool: Incompatible Plugins. Please refer to the developers of the plugins you use for compatible versions.
- The MediaPortal Extenstion Installer (MPEI) will be updated in beta2/RC1 of 1.2.0 to automatically incorporate the version information into the .mpe2 file. So plugin developers just have to re-save their MPEI package (if the plugin is already compatible).
Music and Video View Definition Changes
Setting up and changing views for music and video was previously complicated and confusing. We have now updated the interface to make setup far more logical and allow views to be easily re-ordered.
- Because of this change any user defined views you had setup will be lost when upgrading. Hopefully we have mitigated this by replacing the default music views more in-line with those in Kiwijunglist's guide to setting up music. To learn how to use the new features, see our Wiki: Music Views 1.2.
The music section of MediaPortal has been given a thorough health check with lots of changes behind the scenes as well as lots of bug fixes and changes to make things more logical and consistent. There are also some new features
- Better handling of multi-disc albums
- A playlist mode
- Last.fm Love / Ban functions on music Now Playing screen
TV - Fast Forward
Fast Forward inside TV should now work smoothly with up to 4x playback speed, which is the maximum for Windows 7 (Note: Windows XP supports only 2x, due to it's audio renderer ). Fast Reverse will still work in a skip-step like fashion.
TV - improved LiveTv in multiseat setups
1.2.0 beta vastly lowers the workload placed on the hard drive by live TV. This virtually eliminates the stuttering and picture corruption that was sometimes seen before on client systems while watching live TV.
TV - increased performance of channel selector
Opening and browsing through the channel selector inside TV was very slow for some users. So we increased its performance!
DVD Playback - added Closed Captioning support
We have added supported for Closed Captioning (CC) to the DVD playback.
You now have the option to use SMS style input with your remote control, just like you know from your cell-phone.
If you want to use the standard keyboard, then you can switch the input style back to it by pressing the related button inside the virtual keyboard.
Play all videos inside a folder
This is a feature many users requested for a long time. In this release we introduce the option to play all videos inside a folder with one option.
MediaPortal Configuration restructured
We have reworked the sturcture of MediaPortal Configuration in order to group the options more logically.
With MediaPortal 1.2.0 beta we introduce a brand new look, that replaces Blue3 and Blue3wide which served us well during the last years. We have made the Blue3/wide skin files available to the community, in case someone wishes to make it available, and maintain it, as an extension. The Team certainly hopes that this will happen.
Besides the new look, we also introduced a couple of new controls for our awesome skinners in the community, plus a brand new layout called "Coverflow" which you can see in action in the teaser video of 1.2.0 beta.
Hauppauge Colossus TV Card Support
With this new release we introduce full support of Hauppauge's new Colossus TV card.
We want to thank our community member WileECoyote for his support, which enabled us to add this to 1.2.0 beta.
Image Caching option for skins
While this does not sound like much, it will dramatically decrease the loading time required to switch between various screens or sections of MediaPortal, especially for HD skins which use high resolution background images.
Skinners should take a look at this new Image Caching skin feature when updating their work for 1.2.0 beta compatibility.
Obsolete plugins removed
We removed the following obsolete/no longer maintained plugins in 1.2.0 beta.
- Video Editor
Full list of changes
You can review the complete change log for 1.2.0 beta by using the following links:
Compiled List of Skin and Plugin related changes
Community Skinners and Developers should have a look at the following pages to find out about the changes which will effect their extensions.
Some of these changes are mandatory to become 1.2.0 compatible.
Installation, Upgrade, Download and Feedback
Known Issues of 1.2.0 beta
Keep in mind that you are testing Beta software. Even though internal testing shows that it is very stable, it does still contain issues. Some users may never encounter these issues, while others may, depending on how you use MediaPortal.
Before you test 1.2.0 beta, please review our bug tracker for known issues in this version:
- 1.2.0 beta - known problems in MediaPortal
- 1.2.0 beta - known problems in TV-Server
- 1.2.0 beta - known problems in Installers-DeployTool
Installing 1.2.0 beta
When doing a clean installation of 1.2.0 beta, then there is nothing special to worry about.
Upgrading to 1.2.0 beta
All MediaPortal installations starting with 1.1.0 RC1 can be upgraded to 1.2.0 beta, without losing your settings.
- Remember, because of the plugin version check change, none of your currently installed plugins will work with 1.2.0 beta. They will all get disabled! Please refer to the developers of the plugins you use for 1.2.0 beta compatible versions.
- Because of mandatory skin changes, your currently installed skin will not work with 1.2.0 beta! Please refer to the skin designer of the skin you use for a 1.2.0 beta compatible version.
- Manually stop TV-Service!
On some systems our installer is not able to update the TV-Server installation because its files are locked or the service can not be stopped. In 1.3.0 we will completely rework our Installer to take care of this problem once and for all.
For upgrades to 1.2.0 beta we recommend you manually stop the TV-Service, and make sure, via Windows Task Manager (enable the "all users" option), that the TvService.exe process is really gone before starting to upgrade.
We are very curious what you think about our new design which we have introduced in 1.2.0 beta. Please share your thoughts in the dedicated forum section.
If you think you found a bug, then please post a detailed report in our 1.2.0 beta Development Forum.
Make sure your report includes all the required informations. Incomplete reports will be removed to keep the forum clean.
Finally - the download. We hope that you took the time to read this release news entirely because it includes vital information about the major changes.
If you would like to support MediaPortal, we would be happy to receive a small donation.
The team wishes you a lot of fun with this new release!