Library Manager

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The Library Manager allows the user to create and maintain multiple, independent Libraries (databases). This can be useful in a multiple user environment, or when a specialized library is needed. Here are some of the ways that multiple libraries can be used:

  • You can create a library for each member of the house. Members import only those files they like. They can also rate their music in their own way. You may want to disable tag updating in this scenario.
  • You can create a library for Party Music. When your friends come over, they see the music they are supposed to see (and your collection of Engelbert Humperdinck albums remains your secret!). See Party Mode and Access Control for a different way of doing this.
  • On a laptop that you use both at home and on the go, you could have two libraries: one for home use accessing a network drive containing the losslessly compressed content, and one containing smaller (lossy compressed) content for travel.
  • You might want to keep your audio, images, and video separated from each other so you could create a separate library for each.

Finding the Library Manager

  • In the Tree, go to Playing Now > Playing from <Current Library's Name>
The Media Center Library Manager is found under Playing Now in the Tree.

Here you will find options to:

  • Add a new Library
  • Delete one of the existing Libraries
  • Show a Library that was previously Hidden
  • Delete an automatically-discovered Library from the list

The node will also expand to show a child item for each available Library. The currently loaded Library is shown with a highlighted icon, and any currently available but unloaded Libraries are shown with dimmed icons. You can use these child items to perform functions on individual Libraries.

Working with Libraries

Adding a Library

  1. Click Add Library.
  2. In the Name field, give the new library a name.
  3. Select a Library Type:
    1. Library Server: This is used to access the Media Server of another copy of MC running on the network. Enter the remote server's Access Key or network address.
    2. Local Library: This is used to create a new Library on a local disk. Please remember that MC performs best with its Library on a fast disk (slow external and network drives are not recommended).

Media Center will also auto-discover new compatible Libraries available on your local area network. These can be used just like the ones added manually. If you prefer not to see one, you can hide it or delete it from the list.

Loading a Library

To load a Library Using the Library Manager:

  1. Select the Library you'd like from the ones available under the Library Manager in the Tree.
  2. Click the Load Library button on the right.

To Load a Library Via The Command Line:

Run the Media Center launcher utility with the following command line parameters:

MC<current version>.exe /Library <library name>

For example

mc20.exe /Library "Only ABBA Library"

Managing Libraries

When you select an existing Library under the Library Manager, it provides information on the Library's location and size in the view header on the right-hand side. For any selected Library, you may:

  • Rename it.
  • Delete it to remove it from Media Center's Library Manager (this does not delete the Library's database files from disk).
  • Clone it to create a new, independent copy of the Library.

You cannot delete the original, default Library in Media Center's AppData folder. This is required in case the other custom Libraries are corrupted or missing, because Media Center cannot load without a valid Library.

If you select the currently loaded Library, you can also create and restore backups:

And there are additional tools available for managing the currently loaded Library:

  • Import: opens the Media Import dialog
  • Library Options: opens Options > Library & Folders
  • Clear Library: Erases the current Library and resets it back to the defaults (with no media imported).
  • Sync Library: Allows you to sync this local library with one served by another copy of Media Center on the network.
  • Export to XML: Exports the Library to an XML File