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  • How to Create a Multimedia DivX
    Part 1: The Basics

    So, you want to be really cool, huh! You want all your friends to see the amazing brand new DivX CD that you made yourself. Neither is this any ordinary DVD rip done by someone who has just learnt how to press that large GO button on FlasKMPEG =). No, this is something special! It looks just like a real DVD yet it fits two hours onto a single 650 MB CD! It lets you choose another language to listen to. It lets you choose as may subtitle languages as you like! It has a detailed chapter list, so you can jump to your favorite section just like in a commercial DVD! When you put the CD in it loads up an animated menu allowing you to select all these features. In fact, if someone didn't know any better they probably wouldn't even be able to tell that your film wasn't a real DVD! Well, if you do not already know how to make such a CD yet you're in luck, because I'm going to take you through the whole process step by step.

    All of these things can be done with the most excellent MicroDVD Player. And this isn't just for DivX movies you can do it with just about any video format your computer can play, VCD, ASF, SVCD, MJPEG and so on. The only downside is you can only play them on your PC.

    In actuality this is a simple "put it all together" kind of tutorial. I am assuming you already know how to rip a DVD to DivX and have one. I also assume you know how to get subtitles for your DVD and I already assume you can extract a secondary audio track for intergration into your multimedia CD. If not just follow the guides that explain how to do all this.

    Before I start you will need:

    MicroDVD & INI Editor

    MicroDVD Player's INI Files

    To make MicroDVD play your extra audio tracks, subtitles and everything else, you must make a text file with an .ini extension. MicroDVD will read this text file to know what to do with them. This .ini file is similar to the .ifo file of a normal DVD. Locutus has been kind enough to create a program called INI Editor which has some very nice features. But I find it less confusing to write it out as a text file first and then use the editors advanced features later. Either way, once I show you my method you can do it anyway you like.

    Lets make an INI file! Much of the following is covered in greater detail in the instruction of MicroDVD Player so I'll just go over the main points briefly. A typical INI file looks like the following list. This is again the .ini from the film The Mummy and has only been set out to support the features I am using in this tutorial. If you don't use any feature just don't add it to the text file. All MicroDVD text files start with the title [Micro DVD Ini File] in square brackets. Notice also that that there are other headings. [MAIN] deals with the CD opening info. [MOVIE] describes the movie location. [LANGUAGES] describes where each secondary sound file is kept. [SUBTITLES] describes where each subtitle file is kept. And [CHAPTERS] describes how the chapters are divided.

    Just so you know, this is what a quite complex ini file looks like:

    [Micro DVD Ini File]
    Title=The Mummy
    CD name Delay=1
    Primary=ENG English
    1=COM Commentary
    1=ENG English
    1=0 Chapter 1
    2=9251 Chapter 2
    3=16228 Chapter 3
    4=31294 Chapter 4
    5=39061 Chapter 5
    6=49578 Chapter 6
    7=58944 Chapter 7
    8=66349 Chapter 8
    9=72366 Chapter 9
    10=77658 Chapter 10
    11=96475 Chapter 11
    12=106561 Chapter 12
    13=118049 Chapter 13
    14=121468 Chapter 14
    15=130295 Chapter 15
    16=140406 Chapter 16
    17=148010 Chapter 17
    18=157690 Chapter 18
    19=168499 Chapter 19

    It looks scary, but its more or less just a list of stuff and where to find it. Once you know what to put you will be fine. For full details of all additional features you can have in an .ini, file please refer to the MicroDVD help pages provided with the program.


    Writing Your Own INI File

    Open notepad or any text editor and lets write your .ini file. Start with the first section:

    Title=The Mummy
    Title= call this whatever you like, its not important. When you put your CD in this will be the title of your film.
    ID= any number you like. Each CD must have an separate ID number so that MicroDVD can identify it.
    Delay=1 Just use 1. This is how many seconds MicroDVD will wait to change chapters. A second is good to give it time to play correctly.
    CDNumber=1 If it is the second CD of the film put =2 and so on. Each separate CD must have its own INI file to help stop confusion.
    Directory= this is the location of the movie .avi file on your CD. If you just bundle everything on the CD put a full stop mark (.) as shown.
    AVIName= this is the location of the movie .avi file on your CD. If you just bundle everything on the CD put a full stop mark (.) as shown.
    AVIName= tell it the location of the main film ie. something.avi. If it is inside a folder on the CD call it AVIName=\foldername\something.avi.
    CD1Frames= This is only needed if your movie is put on two or more CD's. You must put the number of frames from each movie after this option. It is needed to keep audio and subtitles in synch. Finding the frame number to enter is easy: just open VirtualDub, move to the last frame of each CD movie and write down the frame number!
    Primary=ENG English
    1=COM Commentary


    Directory= this is the location of the secondary audio track on your CD. If it is inside a folder on the CD call it Directory=\foldername\something.wav
    MultipleAudioAVI=0 advanced function just leave it 0.
    Primary= ENG English just keep this as English if your main .avi movie is in English, its the default language. If it was German, for example you'd put GER German. It actually doesn't matter what you put its just a name ;). The first three letters are the abbreviation for the whole word.
    1=COM Commentary Each extra audio track is given a number and a name so '1=COM Commentary' is the audio track with The Mummy Director's commentary. It doesn't matter what you call it though. File= is the location of the file which I called comment.wav. If it was inside a folder on the CD call it File=\foldername\comment.wav. Each language should be numbered with the file location just under each number thusly:
    1=COM Commentary
    2=FRE French
    3=GER German
    1=ENG English
    Directory= Same as with other examples. It is the location of the folder that the subtitles are kept in. If there is no folder simply put a full stop (.) as shown.
    Format= Just keep it 0. MicroDVD supports three other kinds of subtitles SubMagic, SubRip and SubViewer by putting in 1, 2, or 3 you can select the format.
    Lines= How many lines will the subtitles take up? One line at the bottom, two or three? Just put the amount here.
    EstimateDisplayDuration=0 Keep this as 0 unless you have made your own subtitles which require a set time (see MicroDVD instructions for details of this).
    1= and File= is exactly like the Languages section the number is the language name and the file directly below it is the location ie:
    1=ENG English
    2=FRE French
    3=GER German

    If you are testing your subtitles they will only appear in full screen mode in MicroDVD. Also, you cannot put the subtitle text files inside another folder if you want it to be compatible with Redz DivX Player.

    2 CD Subtitles

    Because there are tools designed to chop up subtitles and renumber the time codes people think this is nessasery for MicroDVD - it is not! Just copy the full subtitles text file onto both CD's. MicroDVD knows its the second CD and so will go to where it left off.


    Testing the INI File

    Okay, we are nearly finished ;) save your text file as "MDVD.INI" including quotation marks to force the computer to save it as .ini rather than .ini.txt! This name is important as it is the one MicroDVD looks for on the CD. If all has gone well this .ini will work on your new DivX or whatever CD. Lets test it now! Make a new folder on your hard drive for all the files in your movie, I called mine 'mummy' because it is a DVD rip of the movie The Mummy. Open MicroDVD player and press the configuration button (1). Up pops the following box. Select the 'Source' button at the top to bring up the directory selection. Select the 'Load from Directory' option (2) and select the file MDVD.INI. Close the configuration box.

    Now click the spiral button (4) until the DVD HardDisk icon appears in the far left display (5). Now press the play button to preview your movie. Left click the mouse once so the MicroDVD player control appears but the film remains in full screen mode. Then press the subtitles button (6) and select your subtitles. Then press the alternate language to test that (7). If all goes well you should be smiling =), if not look over your notes again and check the MicroDVD instructions for a more detailed description on the settings of your .ini file.


    Getting the Chapters from a DVD Vob File

    The chapters for a DVD film are held in the .ifo file on the CD. The main film of a DVD looks something like this:


    For details on DVD structure take a look at my basic DVD structure article in the appendix section.

    These have to be extracted and converted first by Vobsnoopy and then by MicroDVD's INI editor. Run Vobsnoopy and Open the first .ifo file of the movie list. There will be other .ifo files in the DVD but choose the one that matches the .Vob files of the movie; it will look something like Vts_0x_0.ifo.

    Anyway, choose: File > Open.

    Hit the extract button and only check the box that says 'Disassemble *.IFO file to *.INI File' and save it somewhere.

    Now is the time to run the MicroDVD INI Editor. Just in case you missed it, its located in the MicroDVD folder when you downloaded it, its called: INIEditor.exe. If you haven't got it go to the MicroDVD website and get it.

    Open the new .ini file that we have already previously made in notepad.

    Up pops this box. Don't worry, it is little more than a normal text editor with helpful options. Everything you typed in notepad could easily have been typed in this editor. Try clicking on the various tabs to see how your file is broken up. Then click on the Chapters tab.

    This section of the editor allows you to either create your own chapter positions or import them. We are going to import the file we have just extracted with Vobsnoopy. Right-click the mouse in the chapters window and select the option from 'Import chapter starts from IFO file'.

    Choose the frames per second of your DivX, VCD or MiniDVD in the import box. This is usually 23.976 for a NTSC DivX .avi file and 25 for PAL. You may also try 29.970. Basically, if the chapters don't quite start in the right place try grabbing them again with a new framerate. Once done press OK.

    Up pops your chapter time codes =). You can rename them here if you wish so that it describes the section of the film the chapter points.

    When you are finished, go to File > Save. That's it! Open MicroDVD again and check that it jumps to the chapters you have made and also so it lists them as designed.

    That's all for this tutorial. If you are feeling brave you can go to the next one and learn to create menus and the such like. As I said before, the MicroDVD's help file is very well written so I do not need to spend too much time explaining each function in detail. But if you followed everything I said step by step you will now understand how it works.

    Duplication of links or content is strictly prohibited. (C) NICKY PAGE 2000