It's not quite Valentine's Day, but we couldn't wait to show how much we love you all - so today we have a fresh new version just for you. Version 1.3 includes an all-new firmware backup option, new translations, playback enhancements and a whole slew of other improvements and fixes.

Full details on what's new and how to update can be found below.

Automated Firmware Backups

New in version 1.3 is an option to automatically backup firmware signatures. This feature will integrate seamlessly with the upcoming version of Seas0nPass, allowing for one-click restores to the firmware of your choosing.

Full Changelog

  • Added automated firmware signature backups
  • Added Danish, Dutch, French, Greek, Italian, Brazilian Portuguese, and Spanish translations
  • Added support for advanced (learned) remote commands
  • Added support for multiple external subtitles (movie.en.srt, movie.de.srt, etc...)
  • Added support for folder based organization/playback
  • Added support for embedded DVD chapters
  • Added chapters section heading to Playback Menu
  • Added global zoom setting
  • Improved playback performance for movies with invalid timestamps
  • Improved appearance of VobSub subtitles
  • Improved metadata fetching for localized file names
  • Improved audio track filtering
  • Improved playback bar to match native player
  • Improved metadata and bulk folder fetching stability
  • Improved Media > Settings menu layout
  • Resolved issues with folder name changing on metadata fetching
  • Resolved issues with buffering
  • Resolved rare DVD related crash
  • Resolved floating AFP issue that was causing connection issues
  • Resolved floating buffer overflow in software decoder
  • Minor changes to Grid View appearance
  • Minor UI improvements
  • Other miscellaneous bug fixes

Hooray! Where can I get it?

If you're already running a version of aTV Flash (black) the new 1.3 version can be installed through the Maintenance --> Manage Extras menu. Links for the new version can also be found in your account under the Downloads tab.

If you're not yet using aTV Flash (black) you can learn about all the great benefits here.

Enjoy. Smile

Comments

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 2:19pm

Fantastic job guys! This is by far the best software for the aTV.
However, I have a few suggestions, on media menu, it displays recently watched movies in the top with thumbnails. I think this is less usefull information, what I would want is to see my unfinished movies, maybe with an indication of remaining time.
Then I agree with some of the comments about seeing folders instead of the movies directly, but I guess this is something you guys already are working on.

Keep up the good work!

Mikael

Submitted by why on February 8, 2012 - 2:21pm

Great work, only thing I don't have is backup my firmware in settings like in pic.

I'm on 4.2.2 could that be the problem?

Submitted by Chicagorex on February 8, 2012 - 2:29pm

Under Nito TV, Main Menu Weather, when are the full stats going to show up where there are currently dots.  This was working properly in an earlier release of firecore.  It's not a big deal, but was working at one point.  Thanks!

Submitted by james on February 8, 2012 - 2:29pm

A bit of both actually. Signature backups are done in 3 different ways.

  1. Installing or updating aTV Flash (black)
  2. Automatically every 24 hours (as long as the AppleTV is powered on)
  3. Manually through the Maintenance --> Settings --> Manage Backups menu.

Backups are saved for whatever AppleTV version(s) Apple is currently signing, even if you're not running that particular version.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 2:33pm

me too - i like the weather but all it is, is dots.......

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 2:42pm

Recently watched movies should include any that you have unfinished, right? Personally, I like having the recently watched files there as it makes it easier to replay a file (e.g. for kids or for showing something to someone visiting).

The current function is a superset of what you want; switching it to the way you want would mean LESS functionality for those not interested in that.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 2:44pm

This seems like a potential feature that would only be of use to a very limited group of people.

Instead, have you considered installing VPN software on your router? I believe both Tomato and DD-WRT (alternative router firmwares) have great VPN support.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 2:48pm

Re: Flash - I doubt you will ever see Flash support. The ATV2 firmware is based on iOS, which does not support Flash. Barring the creation of a Flash for iOS plugin (which would be a massive undertaking, since Adobe doesn't even support Flash on Android anymore), I wouldn't ever expect Flash in Couch Surfer.

Re: Firefox - the ATV1's underlying software was a modified version of Mac OS X. Thus, people were able to find a way to get Firefox running on the ATV1. As mentioned, ATV2 runs iOS underneath. Since there is no Firefox app for iOS, it would be impossible to add a Firefox option to the ATV2.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 2:53pm

Adding Hulu would be a massive undertaking. Note that Boxee and XBMC have both struggled with unofficial Hulu plugins (and Boxee eventually removed it). The only way to get Hulu Plus on a device would be if Hulu themselves created/blessed a plugin.

Fortunately, Hulu have actually made a Hulu Plus app for ATV2, Apple just hasn't rolled it out yet. Patience, patience.

http://9to5mac.com/2011/10/31/hulu-plus-app-is-ready-for-apple-tv-decisi...
http://www.electronista.com/articles/12/01/31/hulu.ceo.careful.not.to.co...

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:01pm

No, but with each new update Plex is recreating the same functionality and layout of the native Apple Media Player. Sometimes forget if I am in the Apple or Plex menu.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:01pm

I still can't view Jpegs with this new version of media player after reporting this after every update since beta stages, When will the Media player be able to load jpeg pictures for viewing?

Submitted by chrism.9273 on February 8, 2012 - 3:06pm

In the email notification about 1.3 it mentioned Harmony One support... but it isn't listed here? Wondering what is actually supported on the Harmony One?

Submitted by elheebo on February 8, 2012 - 3:08pm

I would also be a big fan of aVPN solution - I can't use a router based solution with the router that I have.

Many thanks,

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:15pm

Guys,

This is totally doable by hand (so hence there should be a way to do it with an app).

Here's how to do it - in my example I want to move the XBMC menu from the left hand side to just before the Maintenance menu, as I more often use the other menus.

Once you're jailbroken, you can manipulate the config files yourself. If you don't want to get your hands dirty with an ssh session, use something like Filezilla to connect to the box via SFTP (not FTP) - user root, password alpine

Go to folder /private/var/stash/Applications/AppleTV.app/Appliances

You'll see an appliance for each top level item on the menu. Go into XBMC.frappliance

Download the Info.plist file from that folder, and open it on your Mac (sorry Windows users) using Property List Editor

Find the key named: FRAppliancePreferredOrderValue

In my install its value was set to 2. On my menu I want to move the item 4 places to the right, so I change the value to 6

Save and re-upload the Info.plist file and reboot your ATV. You should find the menu has moved.

If you're looking to, say, move items up the "Internet" menu, the procedure is similar - grab the Info.plist file from Internet.frappliance.

Then find the FRApplianceCategoryDescriptors list, and you'll find one item for each submenu item. I just changed the preferred-order key for the items I wanted at the top of the menu to a lower number, which pushed MLB.TV down the list so they're off the bottom of the TV. I'm sure there's a way to remove those unwanted items completely by playing with other files, but I couldn't be bothered.

Hope that helps Smile

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:18pm

I, too, was a former Boxee user. But I think it's important to identify some differences between Boxee and aTV Flash.

(1) Boxee was built on top of the open-source XBMC software. Everything people spent almost 10 years developing in XBMC, Boxee got "for free." That's why the 2 apps are so similar (and one reason why Boxee discontinued their PC version, as robust PC versions of XBMC already exist). Things like samples, subtitle shifting, etc. are part of the XBMC codebase.

On the other hand, aTV Flash and Media Player had to be coded from scratch as there was no XBMC version for aTV at the time. Even if there was, building aTV Flash on top of XBMC would also bring over 10 years worth of baggage. The reason I left Boxee and XBMC some months ago was because of how bloated and complicated it had gotten. aTV Flash and Media Player's relative simplicity is refreshing. Since the Apple TV's stock firmware supports 80% of what one wants, there's no reason to add all of that in aTV Flash (e.g. Netflix, YouTube, etc.).

(2) Media Player does recognize movies and TV episodes (if named properly). But it does not have a "library" function as Boxee did (point it to your folders and XBMC organizes everything). Instead, yes, you navigate your files via folder structure. There are advantages and disadvantages to this method. If, like me, you keep everything organized anyways, it's not that big of a deal. If not, I can see how it would be useful. But consider how much complexity it would add to aTV Flash. Once you add a library function, you also have to add ways for people to fix mismatched items, merge folders, fetch metadata, etc. It's not that easy.

But, for what it's worth, I do believe James has posted in the forums that it's a feature they're looking at for future versions. I think they're debating a library function vs folder collapsing, so if you have a preference either way, your best bet is to voice your opinion in the forums.

(3) Subtitle search is one of those features that seems nice in theory, but rarely works well in practice. At least, that's how it was for me on Boxee. If you really want it, consider posting a suggestion for it to be added in the forums.

That said, there is now a beta version of XBMC you can install on the ATV2. Google around and you should find instructions. Though, in my experience, it was very buggy and not ideal for day-to-day use.

---

I hope that helps. Just remember, Boxee/XBMC tried to do everything in one piece of software. For me, ATV2 has 80% of the features I want already implemented simply and perfectly. I use aTV Flash for that last 20%.

(And if you still really want Boxee on your TV, just get a Boxee Box. Or does it now make sense why it's $200 vs. just $30 for aTV Flash?)

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:19pm

Whilst a VPN service will work it can be problematic. There is a much easier solution where you only need to change the DNS settings on your AppleTV and it works with multiple devices. You can watch Netflix on your AppleTV and BBC iPlayer from your desktop. I have this working with Netflix on my AppleTV in Australia. Not sure if I;m allowed to plug a paid service but they have a free trail too.

http://unblock-us.com/866.html

Thanks,

Mark

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:21pm

If you really want this, go post it as a feature suggestion in the forums. If enough people want it (and it looks like other people in the comments here also want it), perhaps they will consider adding it.

Submitted by DJMic on February 8, 2012 - 3:23pm

Took the updates my box is so lagged and slow now... random reboots anyone else?

Submitted by VisualMind on February 8, 2012 - 3:24pm

Hi,
Great job indeed. I was wondering if there is any possibility in Couch Surfer when playing a movie that has subtitle, the video player in fullscreen of the Couch Surfer also display that subtitle? On MacBook or PC with Windows it works in any browser to display the subtitle of the streaming movie in fullscreen. Anyone knows how to do this in Couch Surfer in Apple Tv? Or is this already implemented and I did not find the setting for that ?
Thanx.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:27pm

Are you sure your network is fast enough? That definitely sounds like a local network issue, not something wrong with the software.

Are your file server and the ATV2 both connected wirelessly to your router? If so, it means your router can only use half of your wireless capacity for each. For example, if you have an 802.11g router, it supports 54mpbs wireless speeds (theoretically; real-world speeds will be slower). If both your ATV and your file server are connected wirelessly, that means the throughput to each is only 27mbps.

If, instead, you wire one directly to the router, that means the other device, connected wirelessly, will get the full 54mbps throughput.

If that at least improves things, then you know for sure it is a wireless issue.

(Something else to consider - are you located in a place with a lot of wireless networks? Look into changing your wireless router's channel to avoid interfering with other networks. My network used to be a bit slow when I was on channel 6, but once I switched it to broadcast on channel 1, my throughput shot up. No problems anymore.)

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:34pm

Are we talking about the same software? I've been using aTV Flash for a while and it's always had folder-based organization/playback. I don't know any other way to use it, in fact!

Also, there's definitely been an option in the settings to disable fetching metadata for a while. I couldn't find it at first either, but it's actually the 'Show file extensions' option.

If you have 'Show file extensions' enabled, it will show the filename and nothing else.
If you have 'Show file extensions' disabled, it will fetch the movie/episode name.

Hope this helps!

Submitted by Sipheren on February 8, 2012 - 3:34pm

Can someone explain why AAC audio is still not supported? ac3 works great with full 5.1 but any media I have in AAC just plays in stereo.

 

I have searched the forum and I can't find any reason why this isn't supported, can someone shed some light on this?

 

Cheers

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:37pm

I'm pretty sure there's a way to uninstall modules. I think it was under Maintenance - you just have to disable something and it will ask you to uninstall it and restart the machine.

Re: Mobile app - you can always use the Remote app for iPhone (made by Apple!). Does everything the ATV2's metal remote does.

Re: Pandora - I wouldn't be surprised if Apple added this in a future ATV2 update.

Re: Karaoke file support - have you suggested it as a feature in the forums? If enough people want it, perhaps they will add it.

Submitted by tristanjay on February 8, 2012 - 3:38pm

Will the update of fire core or Season Pass support flash or at least have a plugin to convert Flash into HTML 5

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:44pm

Ah, that's fantastic! Really don't need a "library" mode now that you added this.

(In fact, a library mode would probably make everything really complicated - people who want that are probably better off using iTunes to organize everything. For the rest of us, folder-based organization is the way to go!)

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:45pm

Just wanted to chime in to say there's some of us that would definitely NOT want auto-updates, even if it was possible. I like knowing when software is going to get updated, especially when it has the (remote) possibility of bricking a device.

Submitted by ikeda_i on February 8, 2012 - 3:49pm

I've got 1.3, and have checked the quality oh photo images in Media Player, but it's still dirty image in scanned analog photo images than XBMC.
So I hope more improvement in Media Player.

Thanks

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:49pm

Everyone knows the ATV2 supports the buttons on the little metal remote it came with (e.g. select, left, right, up, down, menu, play/pause).

What most people DON'T know is that also supports a few more buttons if you go to the settings and have it "learn" a different remote with more discrete buttons (play, pause, rewind, fast forward, skip back, skip forward).

Before, aTV Flash's Media Player didn't support those extended buttons. Now, it seems, it does!

Submitted by ioannisz.1104 on February 8, 2012 - 3:49pm

love the update ! great work, keep improving guys!

Submitted by ioannisz.1104 on February 8, 2012 - 3:51pm

i am using the service from unblock-us.com for a long time. Netflix is ok. great streaming speeds...

you just change the dns and voila!

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:52pm

Re: VPN support - if you really need this, consider installing an alternative firmware on your router that can do VPN support (look into DD-WRT or Tomato).

(FWIW, it's pretty easy to change the firmware on a supported router.)

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:56pm

Everyone knows the ATV2 supports the buttons on the little metal remote it came with (e.g. select, left, right, up, down, menu, play/pause).

What most people DON'T know is that also supports a few more buttons if you go to the settings and have it "learn" a different remote with more discrete buttons (play, pause, rewind, fast forward, skip back, skip forward).

Before, aTV Flash's Media Player didn't support those extended buttons. Now, it seems, it does!

If you want to be able to use those extra discrete buttons on a Harmony remote, go the Apple TV's settings and have it "learn" your remote. Nothing to change on the Harmony itself.

Submitted by stevec.5269 on February 8, 2012 - 3:59pm

Thank you! Really appreciate the time you all have put into this!

Very excellent product!

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:59pm

Everyone knows the ATV2 supports the buttons on the little metal remote it came with (e.g. select, left, right, up, down, menu, play/pause).

What most people DON'T know is that also supports a few more buttons if you go to the settings and have it "learn" a different remote with more discrete buttons (play, pause, rewind, fast forward, skip back, skip forward).

Before, aTV Flash's Media Player didn't support those extended buttons. Now, it seems, it does!

If you want to be able to use those extra discrete buttons on a Harmony remote, go the Apple TV's settings and have it "learn" your remote. Nothing to change on the Harmony itself.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 3:59pm

Parental controls please!

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 4:02pm

Re: Flash - I doubt you will ever see Flash support. The ATV2 firmware is based on iOS, which does not support Flash. Barring the creation of a Flash for iOS plugin (which would be a massive undertaking, since Adobe doesn't even support Flash on Android anymore), I wouldn't ever expect Flash in Couch Surfer.

Converting Flash into HTML5 is also an infinitely difficult task. But if you have an iPhone 4S or iPad 2, you could install the Skyfire app (which converts Flash to HTML5 over the cloud) and then use AirPlay mirroring to show it on your Apple TV.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 4:33pm

Hi
The product does not support a very important video extension RMVB, so every time I want to view these sort of file I have to switch to XBMC and even with that the performance is not that good as it is does not support high resolution movies
Is there any possibilities that you may consider to include that feature in your media player app
Thanx

Submitted by happychapsteve on February 8, 2012 - 4:42pm

WebDAV support please!

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 4:47pm

Yeah me too. I believe it happens because of Bluray Rip files are too large..

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 4:50pm

Any news on SMB access issue fix?

Submitted by shatfield on February 8, 2012 - 4:52pm

Tag support, please!  I'd love to be able to tag my files (movies & tv shows) and have them searchable, and/or browsable! Very cool idea, please implement!

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 5:00pm

Prevent AppleTV from disabling HDMI output when TV is off because Remote HD doesn't show the ATV image otherwise!

Submitted by matthewt.8245 on February 8, 2012 - 5:00pm

Can you pls pls pls support rmvb??? That's the only thing I care.. I don't care those UI feature things.. it is just UI and I am not an artist.. I care about the player, and the supporting format only. 

 

Pls pls pls... and really appreciated for all your team's work.. I look forward my dream comes true.. (and give up the stupid xbmc)

THANKS!

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 5:02pm

Prevent AppleTV from disabling HDMI output when TV is off because Remote HD doesn't show the ATV image otherwise!

Submitted by alanet622 on February 8, 2012 - 5:09pm

On the mobile app, I use good player on iPad/iPhone. It is really just mapping a drive the same as flash does, but it works really well and supports nearly everything I have come across. It also allows you to download files into it so that you can watch them offline. It is well worth the dollar or whatever I paid for it.

Submitted by Anon on February 8, 2012 - 5:17pm

That is not a valid format. Realplayer is dead. let go of its decaying corpse. Thanks!

Submitted by manicholls on February 8, 2012 - 5:32pm

The update has made my apple tv totally useless, remote is not working, the apple tv is constantly resetting itself, i have no control what so ever.

Thanks a lot.

Submitted by zathrak on February 8, 2012 - 5:36pm

So...if one of the main features of this update is supporting Harmony One remotes...how is it done? What can it do? I'd like to get everything programmed to just use one remote...

Submitted by JeremyR on February 8, 2012 - 5:40pm

Can you explain this please?

I do not understand what Top Shelf Source is, how to change it, etc.

There seems to be instructions on doing something via FTP but I'm not sure what they are.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. 

My apple tv is junk at the moment and I'm stuck.