Managing Video Files in Windows 8

I am sure everyone has collection of interesting videos and favorite movies on their hard disks.

In fact, I have a dedicated 1 TB external hard disk just to store my favorite series and movies. My problem is that the video files are scattered all over my system.

So, I turned to the combination of Videos Library and Video app to manage my video files.

Videos Library

Bringing all your videos under one roof can be helpful when they are distributed over several partitions or hard disks. The Videos library can become that “roof” for your collection.

Videos library maintains links to all the folders that you add to it. Thus, the space used on the drive is essentially the same as earlier; but the advantage is that now you can access all your audio files from a single place.

Open the library from Windows Explorer’s tree pane. It is located under “Libraries”.

The library thus opened displays the contents of all the folders included in it.

In order to manage the library folders, go to Manage → Manage Library. This opens a small window that lists all the folders contained in the library.

You can add or remove the library folders from here.

Windows provides Video Tools, through which you can

  • Play selected videos directly from the library.
  • Choose a device through which to play the selected videos.
  • Add the selected videos to a playlist.

Video App

Now that you have collected your videos at one place, you need something to play them. Video app is a perfect choice for that, as it uses Videos Library as its data source. However, the app doesn’t stop at playing locally stored videos.

It is a one-stop shop to purchase series/movies from Marketplace.

To launch the app, click on Video tile in the Start Screen. The app will automatically read the Videos Library. Video app can logically be divided into two regions.

  • My Videos Region lists the content read from the Videos Library, as well as the series/movies purchased from the Marketplace. Once you buy some series episode or a movie in the Marketplace, it is listed in the My Videos section.

  • Marketplace Region – This includes the “Movie Marketplace” and “TV Marketplace” sections of Video app. Both these sections list movies and TV Series respectively, from the Marketplace.

You can view trailers of a TV series or a movie in the app. If you like it, you can buy it directly from the app.

One-stop Search

Video app implements Search Charm intelligently; your search term yields results from the local Videos Library as well as the Marketplace (both Movies and TV).

I did a quick search for Harry Potter. The search gave me several results from the Marketplace (and none from the library as I didn’t have anything related to Harry Potter).

Now, you can use the results to view a trailer, or perhaps buy the movie.

Share with Others

You can share series/movies from Marketplace to your friends using the Share Charm of Video app. A link to the series/movie leading to the Marketplace is shared by the app.

I chose Mail app from the list of Share Charm’s apps.

The mail contains a link to the selected series/movie in Marketplace. An interested user can visit the Marketplace and, perhaps, buy it.

Currently, Share Charm is useful only to the Marketplace videos. However, as the app is being improved consistently by Microsoft, we can hope to see this functionality for locally stored videos, too.

Please Leave Your Comments Below...