Default location for video, music, photos

Hi Forum,

is there any way to give my WDTV Live a default location for video, photo and music. Every media is on a CIFS share on the network and browsing through the menu with video->change to network share->select server->share, directory is not friendly enough for my parents?

is there any way to preconfigure this path for faster media browsing?

thanks or your help in advance!


I never thought I’d say this, but perhaps you need to use a media server (only because I *hate* media servers) rather than network shares.

Connecting to a media server will simplify the process for your parents because it will manage the various media much like Windows Media Player (coincidentally enough, a media server :>) does on your local computer.  I can’t speak much more to the process since my luck with them has been uniformily bad, but perhaps someone else who uses one with the Live will chime in here and give you more info.

(Now, I’m older than your parents and I can manage just fine, but then again I’m more of a techie type, so I do understand – my own mother wouldn’t be able to handle the Live :>)

A media server would still involve the same level of navigation mentioned by the OP: 

Video > Media Server > Select Server > Browse folders

Depending on media server, you may then need to navigate several additional folders (TVersity certainly adds an addiitonal layer before you get to your media).

If I’m reading it right, he’s asking for:

Video > Browse default folder

This isn’t currently supported but does sound like a pretty good idea.  :slight_smile:

Might be worth posting it in the Ideas Lab, I’d certainly give it my vote.

But doesn’t a media server provide a menu structure separate from the Live?  So you don’t always constantly have to connect to various shares?

Or, failing that, at least connecting to a media server doesn’t it have it’s own default folders/etc?  It MUST do something like this or there would be absolutely no point in ever using a media server versus shares.

I’m pretty sure I remember it being much more straightforward when I first looked at them (and there’s no way I’m going to install one to find out for sure )

A media server does have its own menu structures / folders and will organise files by type more predictably than the Live. :wink:

The problem (and I’m happy to be corrected) seems to be that the OP’s parents don’t like having to navigate through the various menus to get to the point of actually viewing the network share / media server.  The OP has already simplified his network shares to the point where it sounds like he’s acted as his own media server (videos are in a separate video share?). 

My experience with TVersity is that when you select it as a media server you’re then presented with a number of potential folders to open, which can be confusing.  The only way to change the default menus / visible folders is to mess with the default XML files and create a custom config (something I’ve yet to wrap my head around).  If I’m mistaken or there’s a guide for dummies out there, someone let me know!  :smiley:

Other media servers may offer a simpler view of your media, so it’s worth looking into in that regard (there’s PS3 media server and PlayOn for starters).

However, that doesn’t change the Live’s menu structure, which doesn’t let you jump to a default share folder after selecting ‘Video’.  It’s the extra clicks after selecting Video that seem to be the issue, not the OP’s network shares or media organisation.

Actually, I do know the perfect solution – the Harmony One remote control.

It can be programmed to do anything (and I mean anything) in terms of IR signals.  I already have a menu option on it that navigates the Live to my own video correctly (so I just press the one button).

While on the surface I don’t see anything wrong with the poster adding the suggestion in the Ideas section, you and I both know this is unlikely to happen anytime soon (read: anytime before his parents give up on the Live).  The Harmony, OTOH, can be programmed now to do just what they want.

(Only downside – it’s pricey.  But for this old man, it’s worth every penny )

I changed the xml files on my My Book World Edition 4 TB. I was actually pretty easy. I learned it all from this 1 post:

Now my wdtv live starts from Video - Media Servers - Movies 1

Then I can see all thumbnails for every movie. I click and it starts right up.

I agree. That remote will make anything automated! The Help button is great if it is out of sync.

PixelPower wrote:

A media server would still involve the same level of navigation mentioned by the OP: 


This isn’t currently supported but does sound like a pretty good idea.  :slight_smile:


Might be worth posting it in the Ideas Lab, I’d certainly give it my vote.

yes. the issue is that my parents are not really care about servers, network shares, mediaserver… blabla (who’s does?) :wink:

I want them to store all they media files on a central localtion (fileserver/nas) so i have them more secure (raid) and in backup. there is also no need to start the pc to watch a movie!

so the live device is only accessing a default location \nas\media\photo, \nas\media\music or \nas\media\movies .

i don’t think this is as really strange setup! :wink:

I’ll try to open a topic at ideas lab.

thanks for your help and best regards!


I’d like to suggest a very simplified approach to managing your media, one that I use my self. Since  high capacity USB storage devices devices can be obtained for around $100 I simply load all my media onto a 750GB Passport Essential HD. I use a flat file structure, but all media is placed in it’s own folder. Each folder has either a “Music”," Video", or “Picture” prefix and additional descriptive information is appended to the folder name. For example “Video-Docu-Planet Earth-1”. Its a very basic scheme but it sure makes it easier to keep track of what’s on the media drive, and navigation is greatly simplified, especially if augmented by thumbnail jpegs in each folder.

That’s certainly a good idea if your media needs are modest (I have over 5TB of movies alone) or don’t need to be shared among more than one Live (many, such as myself, have two or more units) or PCs.  For his parents that may be all he needs.