Known Issues / To Do List

To Do List

  • Option to control EXACTLY what information a user wants to show up in particular fields.
  • Look for HD or SD identification in a filename and set the hdvd tag appropriately.
  • Optionally do not tag a file if artwork could not be found.
  • Do more work on IMPAward code. Right now, items with “Parts” ie Part III don’t generally get found, as IMP wants to see “two” instead of “II”.

Known Issues

  • None
  1. dave
    February 11, 2009 at 7:51 am

    Very impressive program. Done a wonderful job on Scrubs! However, I like to record from eyeTV, which is particularly poor at adding the metadata. Any chance you can set iDentify to work on mp4v (they still have an m4v extention but iDentify describes tham as an unknown file type mp4v)?

    • identifyapp
      February 11, 2009 at 7:56 am

      If it has a .m4v extension, iDentify should load it. If it is atomicParsley returning the error, there isn’t likely anything I can do about it.

  2. Pete
    February 16, 2009 at 2:23 am

    Firstly, I’ve been looking for an application like this for months and tried loads of them. This is the best by far! Done an excellent job. 🙂

    The only thing I’d request if it was possible was that it could search through folders. I have all my shows in a separate folders, then season folders. I’d love to be able to point it the show and get it do all of the subfolders.

    Regardless, keep up the fantastic work! 🙂

    • identifyapp
      February 16, 2009 at 8:27 am

      I make no promises. But I’ll see what I can do.

  3. February 28, 2009 at 8:26 am

    First, thanks for creating this app. I had been searching for something like this for a few months.

    I see that you mentioned there’s a Perl script operating beneath the GUI, and I wonder if you’ve considered making that available separately (or a separete CLI version). My ultimate goal is to create an automated workflow to download TV shows, transcode them, add their metadata, and place them into iTunes.

    I’d say I’m 95% there, but a fully automated way of downloading and adding show metadata would complete the process.



    • identifyapp
      February 28, 2009 at 10:31 am

      If you read through the comments on macupdate, one of the describes how to access the script via cli. That might go away in the future though, since there may be a few things happening to identify that i wont want people to be able to edit the perl script to bypass. that would have the side effect of removing cli access.

  4. UV-Birke
    March 26, 2009 at 8:32 am

    iDentify stopped all of the sudden working for me yesterday. It doesnt tag any files anymore. It shows the error “Image ‘/tmp/seasons/314-2.jpg’ could not be loaded.” on every file I add to tag. It worked fine two days ago, even with the same files i try to tag now :/

    • identifyapp
      March 26, 2009 at 8:55 am

      im going to go out on a limb here and guess you haven’t tried any files other than the current tv show/season you were working with. 😉

      anyways. the fix is easy. you just happened to have gotten a corrupt image file from thetvdb.

      first, open a finder window. then press command+shift+g (go to folder) type in /tmp/seasons and press enter. then move 314-2.jpg to the trash. bam! you’re done, and those seasons should tag again. if you get the same error message again, the image on the tvdb is lkikely corrupted. just include your own for that season when you drop the files for identify. just name it the same as the showname. example: Firefly.jpg

  5. UV-Birke
    March 26, 2009 at 9:47 am

    Wow, thank you alot. You been totally right, I tried to tag the same TV-Show, just different Seasons. And yes, I got myself a corrupted image from thetvdb, which I deleted. After deletion it downloaded the same corrupt file agai, so I just replaced it with a manually downloaded one. Exactly what you said.

    This is awesome and fast support for such a neat, little freeware. I’m seriously considering a donation right now. Thank you alot again, it works now 🙂

  6. Josh
    May 10, 2009 at 3:17 am

    I love the app so far. I think I’ve found a bug though, for some reason it isn’t looking up Star Trek: Deep Space Nine correctly. I’m able to pull the other Star Trek series by converting the colon into ** (e.g., Star Trek** Voyager). However, “Star Trek** Deep Space Nine” just fails. A manual GetSeries on site pulls is without any problems.

    Do you have any idea what I’m doing wrong? Thanks!

    • identifyapp
      May 10, 2009 at 9:29 am

      Hrm.. interesting. I don’t see any reason for that to be failing. If the exact same search term works on thetvdb, theres no reason for it to fail in identify….

      It could possibly be an issue on the tvdb end. I know I’ve submitted some shows, and though I could look them up, iDentify couldnt find them for about a week or so. But that does not appear to be the issue in this case. When I have time I’ll have to dig into the code and look closer.

      Haven’t had much time to do any coding lately. Nor finish learning cocoa for the next version. 😦

      • Loyd
        May 15, 2009 at 12:27 pm

        I can verify this problem. I was just ripping DS9 dvds to my drive and twying to get identify to tag them and it indeed fails..

      • identifyapp
        May 15, 2009 at 12:56 pm

        The problem has already been verified. I just haven’t had a chance to sit down and see -why- lookups aren’t working. I feel the problem is very likely on the tvdb end.

    • Josh
      May 18, 2009 at 10:21 am

      Is it possible that the “Nine” is being converted into “9” by accident? That’s the kind of parsing error I might make anyway 😉

      • identifyapp
        May 18, 2009 at 12:52 pm

        You apparently did not see the news post I made 3 days ago about this. 🙂

  7. Andrew
    June 2, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    Seinfeld Season 5 isn’t working as well. Its failing to load the Season artwork and then the entire tag doesnt work. Every other season has worked fine. Maybe the app shouldnt fail if the artwork isnt loaded? Dont know how best to handle the error.

  8. Andrew
    August 27, 2009 at 6:55 pm


    When is your Snow Leopard support coming? I am getting errors.

    • identifyapp
      August 27, 2009 at 8:03 pm

      Well, first, Snow Leopard has to be released. This doesn’t happen till tomorrow (or so Apple says). Then I have to install it. While it will install on my machine, my machine is not worthy to run it (my machine is actually -the- minimum SL can install on). I have a first gen intel iMac. It only has a 32 bit processor, and does not have a video card that can take advantage of OpenCl. While I wouldn’t mind getting identify working in SL (if possible), I don’t anticipate it anywhere in the foreseeable future. I need a better machine first, and can’t justifiy buying anything with the i7 processors around the corner, and until macs ship with blu-ray drives.

  9. Tom
    August 31, 2009 at 5:43 am

    So, is there going to be an update for Snow Leopard? I had upgraded and found that iDentify app no longer found the correct path. I have not tried to delete the plist which is what I will do next, but just wondering if anymore will be done on this excellent program.

    • identifyapp
      August 31, 2009 at 6:48 am

      See the comment prior to yours.
      I am loathe to install an operating system on a machine that barely meets the minimum requirements of said OS, and can not take advantage of any of the most important and prominent features of (64 bit os, openCL). Especially not with i7 macs and blu-ray likely right around the corner. That said, given how inexpensive Snow Leopard is, I might install it on an external drive just so I can get it working under snow leopard. but again, I can make no promises it will run on a 64 bit processor when all I have to test with is a 32 bit. (I am running a Core 1 Duo)

  10. Raewyn
    September 6, 2009 at 8:35 am

    While you are playing with the programs guts, in addition to the issue with The Venture Bros. the program won’t work with the show Carnivàle (with or without the accent).

    I also have two small feature requests (and I am donating to back them up).

    1. Could the “Tag More Files Y/N” window pop to the top layer on the screen, at least if you click on the iDentify icon? It is always buried in the background, so I have to minimize or F9 to find it, instead of it being readily apparent.

    2. Could the program fill out the “Sort Show” field, with the show name (minus “The” at the beginning) AND the season number? Seasons often show up out of order, and I have to go in and add a sort name to straighten them out.

    Even if these never get implemented I will still be thrilled with the program, but they would both add a layer of polish and make me happy!

    • identifyapp
      September 6, 2009 at 10:35 am

      Unfortunately, there won’t be anything I can do at the moment to fix Venture Bros. Im trying to find a way around the period (.) issue that is causing it to fail the lookup. Something aking to my solution to the colon, but nothing is being readily apparent that won’t break other shows.

      As for carnivale, I’ll look into it. It seems the accent character isn’t being sent/detected properly.

      Next, sorting. This will never be automated, as sorting is a very personal preference. But, I have good news. Not only can you save lots of money by switching your car insurance to Geico, but the reason they are appearing out of order is due to the non-itunes standard iDentify used to use in which actors appeared in the artist field and directors in the album artist field. This next version removes their placement in these tags for tv shows. If you edit your current files in a batch in itunes to remove these two entries, your files will appear in order again without the sort field tag being needed. The actors and the directors still appear in their own extended metadata tags. So, there was no real point in putting them in a second location anyways. So, that problem is solved already (and has been for a while, I’ve just been too lazy to post the update)

      And as for the tag more files dialog… I’m afraid I can do nothing to make it come to the front. That message window is created by an external program bundled with iDentify called CocoaDialog. And, unfortunately, I have no control over where it appears in a window stack.

      • identifyapp
        September 6, 2009 at 10:54 am

        More bad news, carnivale doesn’t look fixable. Seems to be a problem deeper in the OS that is preventing it from working. If you drop a file named Carnivàle – S01E02.mp4 in a terminal window, it appears like this: CarnivaÌ le – S01E02.mp4… So the OS isn’t handling these accents properly. Since the files are fed to the taggers and to iDentify, effectively, via a command line (whether or not the user actually sees this, it is happening), it is this bug that is preventing it from working.

        However, WHY iDentify won’t see “Carnivale” when that same search string works on the tvdb, I’ll have to look into.

  11. Raewyn
    September 7, 2009 at 8:08 am

    Bug report: Any show that has a / in the episode title doesn’t get fully renamed. It does make a new file, and all the metadata is correctly entered, so it will work fine in iTunes, but it will not work in Boxee or Plex.

    TVDB Results: Series: Prison Break, Season #3 Episode: #2, Fire/Water
    Now Tagging File Number 87 / 98
    File Name: /Volumes/miniStack/not finished/1/Mad Men/Prison Break.s03e02 Fire_Water-stripped.mp4
    Started writing to temp file. 102030405060708090100 Finished writing to temp file.
    Moving the original file to your Trash…
    File renamed: File Prison Break.s03e02 Fire_Water renamed to Prison Break – S03E02 – Fire/Water.mp4.
    mv: rename /Volumes/miniStack/not finished/1/Mad Men/iDentify.Prison Break.s03e02 Fire_Water.mp4 to /Volumes/miniStack/not finished/1/Mad Men/Prison Break – S03E02 – Fire/Water.mp4: No such file or directory MP4ERROR: MP4Open: failed: No such file or directory ERROR: unable to open for read: /Volumes/miniStack/not finished/1/Mad Men/Prison Break – S03E02 – Fire/Water.mp4
    This file contains 0 chapters.
    File Complete: File Prison Break – S03E02 – Fire/Water Complete.

    Since it can’t put a slash in the file name it leaves you with a completed file named:

    iDentify.Prison Break.s03e02 Fire_Water.mp4

  12. Chris B
    September 27, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    I just downloaded iDentify and was trying it out. The first series I tried was 30 Rock. I am having a problem with my 30 Rock files. They are named like: “30 Rock – S02E02 – Jack Gets in the Game.m4v”. In the progress dialog, it doesn’t seem to identify the season and episode. It says “Season # Episode #” It also says “no episode 30 found for season 2”. But then it continues to write to the file. When I Iook at TVDB and see that there is an entry for 30 Rock, Season 2, Episode 2, Jack Gets in the Game.

    • Chris B
      September 27, 2009 at 3:55 pm

      Here’s a sample of the results:

      TVDB Results: Series: 30 Rock, Season # Episode: #,
      Now Tagging File Number 1 / 1
      File Name: /Users/chris/Desktop/Converted/30 Rock Season 02/30 Rock – S02E06 – Somebody to Love.m4v
      Started writing to temp file. 102030405060708090100 Finished writing to temp file.
      Moving the original file to your Trash…
      This file contains 0 chapters.
      File Complete: File 30 Rock – S02E06 – Somebody to Love Complete.

      • identifyapp
        September 27, 2009 at 4:12 pm

        I think all the numbers in the file name as well as the path are confusing it. Try moving the file to a different location and try again. From testing, if you simply rename the folder named “30 Rock Season 2” to simply “30 Rock” the lookups will be successful.

  13. Chris B
    September 28, 2009 at 1:48 am

    identifyapp :
    I think all the numbers in the file name as well as the path are confusing it. Try moving the file to a different location and try again. From testing, if you simply rename the folder named “30 Rock Season 2″ to simply “30 Rock” the lookups will be successful.

    Yes, changing the folder name worked. Thanks.

  14. MattK
    October 4, 2009 at 6:22 am

    Recently I’ve been having trouble getting poster…Poster Not Found: We could not find a poster for file. I only have trouble with Movies and not TV shows. Identify seems to have no problem in finding the IMDB entry. Anybody have this problem?

    • identifyapp
      October 4, 2009 at 8:47 am

      I haven’t been having any more issues than normal. The tvdb supplies posters for the tv series, and nearly all entries have posters there. However, while the imdb can supply posters, they are frequently very small, and very low quality, often including images of discs sticking out the side of a dvd case (ie complete and utter crap). Movie posters are retrieved from the IMPAwards website. iDentify looks at common URLs for movies names. However, movie names in IMPAwards are frequently not the same as in the IMDB. This causes problems. Also, Ive found that the use of colons and part numbers in a title name tend to prevent positive results also. Overhauling the movie poster lookups is actually next on my todo list, but I haven’t had the time I need to sit down and get it going lately.

      • MattK
        October 4, 2009 at 9:17 am

        I know what you mean, most of the time I just replace them. Is there a way to put impawards ahead of imdb in the lookup? I recall having this problem before and clearing out one of the identify image caches helped clear up, bt can’t remember the specifics anymore

      • identifyapp
        October 4, 2009 at 9:35 am

        identify doesnt use the imdb images at all. it only uses the impawards images.
        if you need to clean out you image cache, it is found in /tmp or /tmp/seasons

  15. Chris B
    October 28, 2009 at 1:48 pm

    Where does iDentify get Chapter titles? I just loaded a bunch of “Big Bang Theory” and all the chapters (all chapters in all episodes) got changed to “0”. This is really annoying (not your fault, some bad data in a Db). Wish I could turn off chapters (is that included under “Option to control EXACTLY what information a user wants to show up in particular field” to-do item?). Chapters for TV are only correct about 30% of the time, so I would prefer just keeping them “Chapter 1, Chapter 2, etc.. Any easy way to reset these on files already converted?

    • identifyapp
      October 30, 2009 at 9:04 pm

      iDentify gets chapter titles from Tagchimp. I’m pretty sure the resulting “0”s for chapter names only occurs on a failed lookup. Its on my list of things to fix.

      • identifyapp
        November 2, 2009 at 7:14 am

        I’ve fixed the 0s for chapter names on failed lookups.

  16. Pete
    November 10, 2009 at 3:04 pm

    Fantastic program I must say, I can’t imagine life without it as I’ve used it to tag a LOT of files now.

    One question I had though, is there a way to call iDentify from applescript. I’ve written an applescript that takes everything I get, converts it to the correct format using an Elgato Turbo.264 encoder, cleans up the name ready for identify, moves the end result to the correct location and adds it to itunes. The only part I’m missing is the bit in the middle where it uses iDentify to add the metadata. I tried reading the information on macupdate but didn’t really understand it. Any help you can give would be great!

    • Pete
      November 10, 2009 at 5:16 pm

      I’ve actually figured out how to do everything except for one thing. I can’t detect when iDentify is completed. Is there a way to automatically exit iDentify when it finishes instead of waiting for a manual quit from the user?

      • identifyapp
        November 10, 2009 at 5:41 pm

        A quick back up for the others. The method described on macupdate had to be deprecated as a result of securing the bundle to prevent users from bypassing the donation nag without donating.

        You can automate this with applescript using the command “open [path to] [list of paths to files to processed]”

        To make iDentify quit when complete, right click on identify and select “Show Package contents” browse to Contents/Resources and open AppSettings.plist in a text editor.
        Look for a pair of lines that reads:


        Change the “true” on the second line to “false”.
        save and exit.

      • identifyapp
        November 10, 2009 at 6:53 pm

        Also, you can use the feature i added in the last version that labels the files with colors in finder in conjunction with folder actions so you know when a file is done.

  17. Tom
    November 17, 2009 at 1:34 pm

    I notice that was down and based on blog comments it was a hardware failure. It appears to be back up, however, I’m getting errors from iDentify that it cannot retrieve thedb information. Is anyone else having this issue?

  18. Stephen
    December 14, 2009 at 4:15 am


    I recently discovered iDentify and I think it’s great, and gives much better results than the Descriptor widget I had been using before.

    There is a problem however. It seems when it calls growlnotify, it (growlnotify) doesn’t exit when it’s finished, which quickly leads to messages like “sh: fork: resource temporarily unavailable” because there are too many running processes. The growl messages are displaying OK (I have them forwarded to my laptop from the MacMini where iDentify runs).

    Any suggestions as to what could be causing this?

    • identifyapp
      December 14, 2009 at 8:03 am

      Perhaps the problem is that they are being forwarded to the laptop? iDentify wasn’t built with that in mind, and the implementation of growlnotify I’m using is a bit clumsy to begin with.

      • Stephen
        December 15, 2009 at 5:18 am

        Well it does seem that is the ‘reason’ for the problem, however, having a quick look at your script, it’s actually caused by the use of the -w argument, which tells growlnotify to wait until it’s dismissed. Is there some specific reason for using this?

      • arrmihardies
        December 15, 2009 at 8:02 am

        Yes. Without the wait command, notifications come in too quickly, overloading growlnotify and causing other errors. So far you are the only person to report a problem with the growl interface, and unfortunately, I do not see it getting fixed, as I am deep in coding a ground up replacement for identify….

      • Stephen
        December 16, 2009 at 9:21 am

        oddly, i’ve taken the -w argument out of that script and it seems to work fine here. If you’re working on a replacement then I hold no grudge over this small issue, can’t wait to see what you’re working on.. hopefully with iTunes integration of some kind? 🙂

      • arrmihardies
        December 16, 2009 at 9:26 am

        Itunes integration might be a bit much to ask at this moment, since I’m am still lerarning the language it is written in. 🙂 however, I plan on native growl support, no more growlnotify or any other helper apps other than atomicparsley and mp4v2, which do the heavy lifting of the tagging and reading of tags from files. I wish I could dump atomicparsely completely, since it has seen no updates in three years, but mp4v2 does not yet support all the tags either (though it does support some that atomicparsley does not.)

  19. Stephen
    December 16, 2009 at 6:21 pm

    so the new app is Obj-c/cocoa? The current app is Perl, with a duckbill-like wrapper i assume?

    • arrmihardies
      December 16, 2009 at 6:31 pm

      Yes. New app is obj-c / cocoa. current one is primarily perl with a wrapper gui called Platypus, and several helper apps.

  20. Stephen
    December 17, 2009 at 8:26 am

    I’m having an issue where some shows (not all, and I can’t identify anything specific about the ones where it happens) are having the episode number appended to the track title – i.e. Little Britain USA, the episodes are just called “Episode 1”, “Episode 2”, but iDentify is writing the tag as “Episode 1 – 1” this has happened with other shows as well, Top Gear, The Simpsons, 30 Rock.

    The data on thetvdb is correct, and the iDentify window even shows the correct information, but the tag is written with the wrong data. Any ideas?

    • arrmihardies
      December 17, 2009 at 9:06 am

      This is caused when the episode title section of the file name ends in a number when dropped on/added to identify. Identify thinks it is a part number. Easiest way around this is to remove the episode title from the file name before dropping it on identify. Ie changing “Some Show – S01E01 – Episode 1.mp4” to just “Some Show – S01E01.mp4” the episode title will still get picked up from the tvdb and added to the tags, and renamed properly if renaming is turned on.

  21. Eakster
    December 30, 2009 at 11:05 pm

    Awesome Job!!! Best app out there!
    I know there are a few naming problems and your working on them but can we get a list of known problem TV Show names and a naming that works? This will help people lookup problems with known solutions. Example:

    24 1×01 Day 1 12am-1am.mp4 24 S01E01.mp4

  22. Pete
    January 8, 2010 at 2:09 am

    I’ve found an issue when trying to do some Anthony Bourdain – No Reservations that have episodes with a ‘/’ in the episode name. For example S02E09 has an episode name of India (Kolkata/Mumbai). iDentify works great until the last part of renaming the file where it spits out an error. Not an problem as its easy to rename the file myself, but I thought I would mention it for thinking about in the next version!

  23. tim
    January 13, 2010 at 11:41 am

    First off, iDentify is awesome and I can’t believe I just found out about it. I’m a serial tagger, but didn’t know about either iDentify or

    I know you are working on a new version, but thought I would throw out some ideas to see what you think. While parsing the file name to get the criteria for lookups works pretty well, it would be very good if the application also could use any existing tags too – perhaps with an option to use the tag data first. Second, series that are daily and use the YYYY.MM.DD format instead of S##E## would be nice to have supported. You could query the air date instead of the episode number.

    Finally, you mention that you are still needing to use AtomicParsely for some writes due to current limitations in the mp4v2 library. That’s interesting because the Subler utility (@ Google Code) uses mp4v2 and doesn’t seem to have any tags that it can’t handle. Perhaps you could take a look at the Subler code to see how it’s working.

    Once again, great app! For those other serial taggers, I wrote up some short blog entries at with the tools I use.

    • identifyapp
      January 13, 2010 at 6:37 pm

      The next version already reads tag data from the files. The next version will be a full fledged tagging application.
      You will be able to review and change tags if you so wish, as well as change data in the tags to refine search results.

      Atomic Parsely in the new version has gone the way of the dodo.

      When I wrote that I would be using a combination, I was intending on accessing things via command line tools. For which there are none from mp4v2 that allow changing cast and crew. However, I have since moved to using the mp4v2 library directly with no need to use the command line. Reading and writing tags is pretty much complete. Right now, Im doing a bunch of testing with it to make sure files don’t get damaged during tagging, which can happen if something I did was done incorrectly after the file has been opened for writing.

      Once I am satisfied, I’ll move on to reading from the tvdb and other sources (perhaps next week unless I encounter problems)

  24. Stephen
    March 16, 2010 at 11:03 pm

    Hi Again,

    I recently installed the W3C LinkChecker via CPAN, and now I’m getting this error when iDentify Launches:
    IO::Compress::Base::Common version 2.024 required–this is only version 2.015 at /Library/Perl/5.8.8/Compress/ line 11

    The weird thing is, I installed LinkChecker on my laptop as well, and iDentify still works on it, it’s just the other machine (Mac Mini) that it gives the error.. They’re both running 10.5.8 with Dev tools installed..


  25. Thibby
    March 31, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    I have recently discovered your program and can’t wait for the next version. I have used it with great success for a handfull of movies but today I keep running into the same message “Finished writing to temp file. Not a HASH reference at /tmp/.plx_tmp line 631.” It then does not write any of the tag information to the file. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    • identifyapp
      March 31, 2010 at 8:42 pm

      My bet is its directly related to a recent change to the tagchimp xml that went into effect either yesterday or today.I won’t know till I get back from vacation later this week. But since iDentify 2 will likely be released shortly after my return, fixing iDentify 1 will likely be put on the backburner while I put some finishing touches on the new version.

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