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You should use this script if

  1. Sometimes you don't get thumbnails for tv recordings (Usually h264 mtn.exe related)
  2. You want custom tv recording thumbnails (internet or locally sourced)

Advantages over built in mediaportal thumbnailer

  • Uses latest ffmpeg binary so works perfectly with h264 recordings(mtn.exe used by mediaportal uses ffdshow version from 2008)
  • Automatically use custom images for thumbnails for particular shows or tv channels (see FAQ)
  • Thumbnail created immediately by the tv server after the recording ends, No waiting for mediaportal client to create the thumbnail
  • Can be used to create thumbnails for all .ts files inside a folder (see FAQ)
  • Can fetch images online from thetvdb and


This script uses comskiplauncher to run (comes preinstalled with tvserver)

Launching comskip on the recording is optional

You don't need comskip installed to use TV Thumbnailer


Installation on TV-Server PC

Step 1

Download TV Thumbnailer from the forum and extract to any directory on your TV-Server

Step 2

Run setup.cmd inside the TV Thumbnailer folder
If you want to use online images from thetv and you need Java on your PC
If setup.cmd can't find java, you can install it for free from here - //

Step 3

Setup as per the screenshot above

If you want to you can now run a test on any recording (see FAQ)

Step 4

Restart your PC

Step 5 - Only needed for MP1.3 Multiple clients, or MP 1.3 Remote clients

If you have MP1.4 clients then you don't need to do this

You don't need to do step 5 on the client that is running tv-server

Download Run_Me_On_Remote_Clients.cmd and save it in your mediaportal program folder

Edit the .CMD file using notepad and change the network share location of your tv recordings

Close notepad and save changes.  Run the file now to check it works

Schedule the .cmd file to run periodically

How To Schedule a task in Windows Vista or Windows 7 | How to Schedule a task in Windows XP



How does tvThumbnailer work?

It looks for thumbnails in the following (preferential) order

  1. Search \TVShow_Thumbs\ for matching tv show image
  2. Search online for matching image
  3. Search \Channel_Thumbs\ for matching channel image
  4. Use FFMpeg to create a screenshot

Do I need to have comskip for this to work?

You don't need comskip, it's entirely optional.

Can I use TV Thumbnailer and comskip at the same time?

Yes you can, run setup.cmd inside the TV Thumbnailer folder and enter the location of comskip.exe

How can I test that the thumbnail script is working?

TV Server Config -> ComSkipLauncher Plugin, browse to a .ts recording and click test

1. It will create one jpg image in your tv recording folder with the same name as the .ts file
2. If MP client is detected, it will also create two jpg images in the MP thumbs\tv\recorded folder
3. If comskip is enabled (see above) it will run comskip on the .ts file
4. It will create a log entry at the end of tvThumbnailer.log

How can I add/update thumbnails for all my previous tv recordings?

Drag your TV Recordings folder and drop it on top of TVThumbnailer.cmd

How can I add a thumbnail to a single recording?

Drag a single .ts file and drop it on top of TVThumbnailer.cmd

How do I add my own custom TV Show image?

Add the jpg image you want to use to \TV Thumbnailer\Show_Thumbs\
You can rename .png files to .jpg without converting them
the file name should be the same as the tv show name
eg. Breaking Bad will look for "breaking bad.jpg"

How do I add my own custom TV Channel image(s)

Add the jpg image you want to use to \TV Thumbnailer\Channel_Thumbs\
You could also copy + paste all your existing channel logos images into this directory,
You can rename .png files to .jpg without converting them
the file name should be the same as the channel name
eg. "tv one.jpg" , "mtv.jpg" , "tv3.jpg"

The script downloaded the wrong image for one of my TV Shows!


  • Replace the image in \TV Thumbnailer\TVShow_Thumbs\ with a corrected image
  • Delete the image in \TV Thumbnailer\TVShow_Thumbs\
    Now you can drag that .ts file or the recordings folder back onto tvThumbnailer.cmd to recreate the thumbs
    In the future tvThumbnailer will no longer search online for this particular show

    Can I use this to run comskip on all my old recordings?

Yes, but this could take a long long long long long long long time to complete

Press WIN+R, type cmd and navigate to tvthumbnailer directory

Type tvthumbnailer.cmd d:\tv recordings and then press [enter] (replace d:\tv recordings with your recording folder)



Log File

tvThumbnailer.log - scroll down to the bottom of the file for the most recent events

File naming convention

TV Thumbnailer expects tv server recordings to use the following (default) format
Movies (manual or single type recordings)
%title% - %channel% - %date%
eg. D:\TV Recordings\Fight Club - TV2 -  2012-10-26 - S38536.ts
%channel%%title%%title% - %date%
eg. D:\TV RECORDINGS\TV3\3 News\3 News - 2012-10-25 - S38532.ts
If you have manually moved your recordings around or renamed them, thumbnailer may have trouble guessing the show name and channel name from the filename.

Bad filenames/directories

If the tv recording's showname has brackets in it then tvthumbnailer wont work for that recording
If comskip or tvthumbnailer is installed to a directory with a bracket in it then it won't work

Why isn't my custom show or channel image is being used?

check the image name ends in .jpg and not .jpeg or .png
you can rename any .jpeg or .png image to .jpg without converting and it will still work
Open \TV Thumbnailer\tvThumbnailer.log and check the TV Show or Channel name matches your image filename
Make sure your recordings are using the default file naming convention above

Still Having problems?

Visit the tv thumbnailer thread and post a question



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