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A newbie question about copying video files

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  1. #1
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    A newbie question about copying video files

    Hello all

    I picked up my first IPad through work last week, and am still familiarising myself with the device. What I did manage to do is connect it to ITunes on my computer and copy all of our childrens TV shows onto the device for our daughter to watch, and it all went smoothly.

    I have a question regarding this process however. I tend to watch a lot of TV shows, and in most cases I wait until after the season is finished and pick up the boxed set, so that I can watch it when I want, without commercials. What I then do is convert them to (unprotected) MP4 files that I then usually copy to my PS3 to watch them on our TV. Just as a test, I copied a few onto the IPad and they look great, I could easily see myself using this device to watch shows while travelling.

    However, our IPad is only 16 gigs, and in longer trips I would probably want to take more shows than that would allow. I also have a 1 Terrabyte portable harddrive though, that I can fit ample amount of shows on.

    At the moment I have only connected the IPad to one computer running ITunes, which is my PC at home. However lets assume I was travelling, and had both my external hard drive and IPad. Would I be able to connect both to any computer that has ITunes and use that PC to copy my shows onto the IPad? Or is there some sort of restrictions with accounts that would prevent me from being able to do this?

    Apologies if this is common knowledge, I'm still a newbie.

    Oh, and another question, although I'm not to worried if I don't get a response for this one - The default video player only shows the first 15 characters or so of the video clip (followed by ...). My shows are specifically named, in the format of <<show name>> - <<Season number>> - <<Episode Number>> and what is happening is that it is that it is chopping off the episode number, meaning until I actually start playing the show I can't be sure if its the right one. Is there any way to improve this? Or is there an alternative video player that someone can recommend?

    Many thanks all.

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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by lostkiwi
    Hello all

    At the moment I have only connected the IPad to one computer running ITunes, which is my PC at home. However lets assume I was travelling, and had both my external hard drive and IPad. Would I be able to connect both to any computer that has ITunes and use that PC to copy my shows onto the IPad? Or is there some sort of restrictions with accounts that would prevent me from being able to do this?

    Many thanks all.
    As far as I know, you can only authorize up to five devices to your iTunes account.

    Some people use a wireless flashdrive, e.g., AirStash seems to be popular with some forum members. I don't know how such devices work because I stopped using physical flashdrives about a year ago and rely on wireless online storage systems, e.g., DropBox, to carry (much smaller) files that I have access to without having to download them to a specific app.

    You could also do a search in the forum for " iPad accessories" to find threads that might be useful.

    I'd be interested to see what other people recommend.

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asharp

    As far as I know, you can only authorize up to five devices to your iTunes account.

    Some people use a wireless flashdrive, e.g., AirStash seems to be popular with some forum members. I don't know how such devices work because I stopped using physical flashdrives about a year ago and rely on wireless online storage systems, e.g., DropBox, to carry (much smaller) files that I have access to without having to download them to a specific app.

    You could also do a search in the forum for " iPad accessories" to find threads that might be useful.

    I'd be interested to see what other people recommend.
    According to Apple you can have up to 10 devices and computers(combined) associated with your Apple ID at any one time.
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4627
    scifan57, iPad Forums Moderator
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  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asharp View Post
    As far as I know, you can only authorize up to five devices to your iTunes account.

    Some people use a wireless flashdrive, e.g., AirStash seems to be popular with some forum members. I don't know how such devices work because I stopped using physical flashdrives about a year ago and rely on wireless online storage systems, e.g., DropBox, to carry (much smaller) files that I have access to without having to download them to a specific app.

    You could also do a search in the forum for " iPad accessories" to find threads that might be useful.

    I'd be interested to see what other people recommend.
    Thanks for the reply. I've done a quick search and it appears you are correct - You can only authorise your IPad on 5 (edit, or 10, from above post) different machines. However it also mentions that you can de-authorise a computer as well.

    In that case, is there anything preventing me from (while travelling) finding a PC, authorising it for my Ipad, copying my MP4's on and then immediately deauthorising that machine?

    If that is possible then that would be a solution I'd be happy with.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lostkiwi

    Thanks for the reply. I've done a quick search and it appears you are correct - You can only authorise your IPad on 5 (edit, or 10, from above post) different machines. However it also mentions that you can de-authorise a computer as well.

    In that case, is there anything preventing me from (while travelling) finding a PC, authorising it for my Ipad, copying my MP4's on and then immediately deauthorising that machine?

    If that is possible then that would be a solution I'd be happy with.
    You could do that. You would have to load the latest version of iTunes onto the computer first. When you plug the iPad into the computer you will get a pop up notice that your iPad has content not in iTunes and will give you the opportunity to transfer that content to iTunes, do it or iTunes will erase everything on your iPad. Once the iPad is synced with iTunes, you can transfer the items from the portable hard drive to iTunes, then sync the iPad again to transfer the items to your iPad.
    scifan57, iPad Forums Moderator
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    Whoa, ok, it's good that it can work, however the fact that I could accidentally erase everything from the IPad is a little worrying.

    Thank you for the information.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lostkiwi
    Whoa, ok, it's good that it can work, however the fact that I could accidentally erase everything from the IPad is a little worrying.

    Thank you for the information.
    One thing I forgot to mention about de-authorizing the computer, here are the instructions for doing so.
    http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1420You have to de-authorize the computer directly from the computer being de-authorized, so do it while you still have access to it.
    Last edited by scifan57; 10-14-2012 at 09:03 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scifan57

    According to Apple you can have up to 10 devices and computers(combined) associated with your Apple ID at any one time.
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4627
    Thank you! It's good to know.

  10. #9
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    Rather than hooking up your harddrive to another PC (you never know whats on someone else's PC, so who knows what E-TD's (electronically transmitted diseases) your drive might get in the process). maybe look into something that would enable you to access your content in a more convenient way.

    A few weeks ago, I picked up a Samsung WiFi enabled DVD drive:

    WiFi DVD drive for iPad iPhone iPod Touch - SmartHUB SE-208BW Mini Review Part 1

    Aside from being able to use it to actually play a DVD on your iPad without the need for converting it, it also lets you connect a USB drive to it so you can stream the videos on it on your iPad. All you need to do is just connect to it over WiFi and install the Samsung app for it on your iPad.

    The device works as a router, so if you are in a hotel, you can connect it to an internet port in your room to provide wifi internet to other devices you might own.


    Another option would be to pick up a Seagate GoFlex WiFi drive. A 500GB portable (4 hour battery) harddrive, which can also be used by your iPad (with an app) to access the video files you have on it.

    Seagate Satellite Wireless | Seagate

    The GoFlex runs about $180-$200, the DVD drive (it has gone up since I posted my review) runs about $50 now.


    As for your file-naming issue, if you are using iTunes, organizing the videos into actual TV series would be the way to go.

    Have a look near the bottom of my iPad Video Guide:

    Ultimate Apple iPad 3 Video How To Guide | Tools4Movies | DVD Catalyst 4

    It explains how to add cover images. In the same area (in one of the tabs) you can set the video type to "TV Show" and name the series and season (in iTunes, highlight all the episodes in a season, then select properties and you can change that for all the files with 1 change). This would organize them in folders on your iPad.

    Unfortunately, this information is stored in iTunes, and not in the actual file, so if you connect your drive to a different computer, it will not be there.

    There is a program called "MetaX" that lets you put this information (as well as pull info from the episodes and such) into the actual MP4 files you have. If you plan on using your iPad for a lot of TV show viewing, it is definitely worth looking into.

    You can find MetaX here:

    MAC: Kerstetter.net - MetaX

    WIN: Knowledge Design Software


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