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Permlink Replies: 16 - Pages: 2 [ 1 2 | Next ] - Last Post: 30-Jul-2019 01:26 Last Post By: jGromit
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
WMV files fail to play
Posted: 25-Jul-2019 23:01
 
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I am trying to build a new album. The source folders contain (among other things) several WMV and MP4 files. The Make Album (all) process seems to built the website just fine. But when I go into the website and select any of my WMV files, they all just hang. The MP4 files play just fine, but the WMV files hang.

The files in question are accessible at:
http://www.dbcole.com/JAlbum.test.photoblogger/Testfiles/

You will see two video files:
- The first is named "101117af Autumn Sunrise in Fox Hollow" and was built from a .wmv. It hangs.
- The second is named "190513ac Dinner wCalin at Bebederos" and was built from an MP4. It plays just fine.

I have bought and installed the latest jAlbum and PhotoBlogger skin. See attached for "about" info.

Also attached is an image of my jAlbum video settings.

I am running Apache server on the latest build of Windows 10 Pro.

Unfortunately, I have no idea where to begin solving this issue.

Thanks,
Dave Cole
jGromit

Posts: 7,775
Registered: 31-Jan-2006
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 25-Jul-2019 23:20   in response to: dbcole in response to: dbcole
 
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The WMV file hasn't been converted to an MP4, so it won't play. jAlbum, if set properly, converts all video formats to MP4's.

Some things I can't check just from the finished album:

  • Under Tools, Preferences, Advanced, check Video support, and make sure that wmv is in the list of supported formats.
  • In the jAlbum Explore view, right-click the thumbnail for each video, and make sure that Do not re-encode is not chosen.
  • Under Settings > Videos, do not check Use custom settings, unless you are absolutely sure you know what you're doing, and have a reason for using anything other than the defaults.
jGromit

Posts: 7,775
Registered: 31-Jan-2006
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 25-Jul-2019 23:23   in response to: jGromit in response to: jGromit
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Oh, and in the future, please ensure that the lifeboat.zip file is created and uploaded. It makes it much easier for us to help, since there are many things we can then check. See Tools, Preferences, Album, Include lifeboat file.
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 26-Jul-2019 08:33   in response to: dbcole in response to: dbcole
 
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Additional information:

The MP4 file created from the WMV file plays just fine when opened outside of jAlbum.

It also plays just fine inside Chrome when accessed directly. Example:
http://dbcole.com/jalbum.test.photoblogger/testfiles/slides/101117af%20Autumn%20Sunrise%20in%20Fox%20Hollow.mp4

But it fails to play when accessed from within jAlbum. Example:
http://dbcole.com/jalbum.test.photoblogger/testfiles/#img=101117af%20Autumn%20Sunrise%20in%20Fox%20Hollow.wmv

Further:
It isn't just photoblogger that's giving me problems. The same failure also occurs in the tiger skin. Example:

http://www.dbcole.com/publicalbum/Political%20Events/1710%20Kellen%20Squire%20Campaign%20Fundraiser%20in%20C%27ville/index.html#img=171023ag%20Remarks%20by%20Kellen%20Squire.wmv

Edited by: dbcole on 26-Jul-2019 05:21
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 26-Jul-2019 08:35   in response to: jGromit in response to: jGromit
 
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I'm sorry that my original post did not make this clear, but the WMV was, in fact, converted to MP4. Please see my "additional information" post of a few minutes ago for details.

Thank you.
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 26-Jul-2019 08:38   in response to: jGromit in response to: jGromit
 
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Thank you for the tip about lifeboat.zip. I'll check it out.
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 26-Jul-2019 08:46   in response to: dbcole in response to: dbcole
 
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As it happens, "Include lifeboat file" was checked :-)

I am attaching two instances. The first is for my test album for photoblogger (http://www.dbcole.com/JAlbum.test.photoblogger/).

The second is for my older tiger-skinned album (http://www.dbcole.com/JAlbum/).
Laza

Posts: 2,287
Registered: 6-Sep-2005
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 26-Jul-2019 11:06   in response to: dbcole in response to: dbcole
 
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The first video is not converted. The browser tries to play the original WMV file, which is not supported by browsers. You probably told jAlbum to not "reencode" the video, effectively leave it as it is. Right click the video's thumbnail and turn off "Do not reencode".

The second video plays fine.

However, please note, today browsers don't allow auto playing of video and audio files, only after the user has started at least one of them manually on a site, so "Auto start videos" might not work as expected at the beginning.
jGromit

Posts: 7,775
Registered: 31-Jan-2006
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 26-Jul-2019 12:19   in response to: Laza in response to: Laza
 
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Aha! The lifeboat file shows the real problem.

Under Settings > Album > Pages, check Copy originals if needed. Long explanation, but please just trust me on this one. Leave that checked at all times.
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 27-Jul-2019 12:47   in response to: Laza in response to: Laza
 
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Hi Laza,

Thanks for trying to be helpful, but I fear I may have not framed my problem clearly.

I think you've responded to my initial post (25-Jul-2019 17:01), but have not seen my later post of 26-Jul-2019 02:33 wherein I provide some additional information.

Your observation that my "2nd video" (whose file name starts with "190513ac") "plays fine" is neither at issue nor in dispute. That file's original format is MP4. My contention is that I do not have problems with original MP4s, but that I do have problems with original WMVs.

Your observation that my "first video" "is not converted" contradicts what I am seeing. My WMVs are being converted to MP4s, and in my post of 26-Jul-2019 02:33, I provided a link to an example of one such conversion.

Let me try to clarify. As an example, I have a WMV video named "101117af Autumn Sunrise in Fox Hollow.wmv".

1) The original file for this video is accessible at http://dbcole.com/jphotos.test/testfiles/101117af%20Autumn%20Sunrise%20in%20Fox%20Hollow.wmv. If you select this link, the WMV will download.

2) When I "Make" the album, this video is converted to an MP4. The file that is created by the Make process is accessible at http://dbcole.com/jalbum.test.photoblogger/testfiles/slides/101117af%20Autumn%20Sunrise%20in%20Fox%20Hollow.mp4. When you select this link, it will play.

3) The in-album play-link created by the Make process for the file is http://dbcole.com/jalbum.test.photoblogger/testfiles/#img=101117af%20Autumn%20Sunrise%20in%20Fox%20Hollow.wmv. But when you select this link, it will hang.


I see that JGromit has posted a suggestion (26-Jul-2019 06:19). I will check that out and report back what I find.

Thanks,
Dave

Edited by: dbcole on 27-Jul-2019 06:50

dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 27-Jul-2019 13:26   in response to: jGromit in response to: jGromit
 
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Hi JGromit,

I do not have "copy originals if needed" checked for three reasons...

1) I am running my own Apache server, and all originals are already in the folder structure that is available to www.dbcole.com. Example: http://dbcole.com/jphotos.test/testfiles/101117af%20Autumn%20Sunrise%20in%20Fox%20Hollow.wmv is one such original.

2) The final album that I will be converting to PhotoBlogger is HUGE! It contains nearly 60 thousand images and over 600 videos. Its total size approaches 200 gigabytes. Making duplicates of all that is just not feasible.

3) The original album (now deleted in prep for rebuild) had been up for over a decade with "copy originals if needed" UNchecked, and it worked just fine.

As I'm sure you know, your doc for "copy originals if needed" reads:

  • "If one of the link to originals settings above is selected (and one is) then checking this will add a full size copy of the original file to the album, and links to the originals point to those copies. If any originals are being used in the album and this option is not selected then broken links could appear unless the 'true' originals are accessible from the album’s location (which they are). For example the local album might work but if uploaded to the web the originals will not be accessible. It may also need to be set if linking is not to originals but some originals are included within the album.

  • The default is, and it is always safer to have, Copy originals if needed checked. Only uncheck this if you fully understand how linking works and you have arranged for all originals used to be accessible from the published album (which I have).

I'll go ahead and try this for my test album, but in light of my concerns, would you be willing to provide more information about why this is a good idea?

Thanks,
Dave
jGromit

Posts: 7,775
Registered: 31-Jan-2006
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 27-Jul-2019 13:45   in response to: dbcole in response to: dbcole
 
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That's exactly what I was afraid you were going to say. ;)

In brief, when David introduced video support to jAlbum, many years ago, he took a shortcut, in an attempt to make it possible for skins to support videos without having to recode the skins. In short, he hijacked a jAlbum variable, originalPath, so that it would also point to processed videos. Some of us, me in particular, warned about this choice, knowing that it would come back to haunt us. And it has. Repeatedly. Alterations in the scheme designed to straighten out the mess have helped most situations, but not the one you're in.

I'm going to suggest something that will seem completely counterintuitive, but in a little test, it seems to work, and only because of the screwy definition of originalPath. Stick to your chosen settings - Link to originals via scaled images, and leave Copy originals if needed unchecked. But now, for each of your videos (even the ones that are already MP4's), right-click on its thumbnail and choose Use original. Believe it or not, jAlbum will still process the video so you end up with an MP4 in the slides directory of the output, and the link on the album page will actually point to it.

ETA: Yes, I realize that if this is the only solution, dealing with 600 videos will be somewhat awful. But not as awful as the alternative.
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 28-Jul-2019 10:25   in response to: jGromit in response to: jGromit
 
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Hi JGromit,

Thanks for the deeper explanation. You're right. Manually setting 600 videos (plus GIFs too, I suppose) will be rather rather nasty... but doable.

Thank you. I'll let you know how it goes.

Dave Cole
jGromit

Posts: 7,775
Registered: 31-Jan-2006
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 28-Jul-2019 10:28   in response to: dbcole in response to: dbcole
 
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I've asked David to have a look at this (he's on vacation). He might have a better solution, so before you wade into an extensive manual effort, let's see what he's got to say about it. The notion that the only way to get jAlbum to use the processed video is to tell it to use the original is more than a little crazy. ;)

ETA: GIF's are a different problem. In short, jAlbum converts them to PNG's, so they lose their animation. Offhand, I'm not sure what happens in this "don't copy the originals" situation - I'll have to experiment a bit.

ETA: In this "don't copy originals" environment, I don't think there's any way to get the album to show the original animated GIF, I'm afraid. If you let jAlbum copy originals, choosing Use original works just fine, but that doesn't work in this case. But I'm having trouble puzzling out the structure - the resulting path if you choose Use original is off by a couple of levels.

Edited by: jGromit on 28-Jul-2019 04:43
dbcole

Posts: 18
Registered: 5-Jul-2007
Re: WMV files fail to play
Posted: 29-Jul-2019 07:36   in response to: jGromit in response to: jGromit
 
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Hi JGromit (replying to your post of 27-Jul-2019 07:45),

Success! Your suggestion works for WMVs, MP4s AND GIFs. (Right-click here, then select the 3rd, 4th, 5th or 6th thumbnail.) Thank You. I will now mark this question as answered.

WRT 28-Jul-2019 04:28: Yes, please do rattle David's cage. I've never had this problem before with WMVs (previously, I was using 15.03.02), so clearly something's changed between then and now.

But this has been a decade long issue with me for GIFs! TWICE in emails between him and myself he has agreed with a fix I have suggested, but no fix was ever implemented.

So now that this problem extends to WMFs, maybe a fix will finally be forthcoming. Anything you can do to help make that happen would be wonderful!

Gratefully,
Dave Cole

Edited by: dbcole on 29-Jul-2019 01:37

Edited by: dbcole on 29-Jul-2019 01:45

Edited by: dbcole on 29-Jul-2019 01:47
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