Duplicate Entries (TMDB/NFO) Not Merged

So I’ve spent far too much time today figuring this out but have confirmed the cause.

Simply, as Infuse is currently operating, if you have an .nfo file — regardless if you have <cast> tags in it — Infuse will by default, display only what it finds in your .nfo files. If you have no cast in your info files, no cast will be displayed.

(Meanwhile, Infuse still builds and maintains its own separate database of cast and crew — sourced as before by querying TMDB in the background — but this database is hidden from view. Only through text search can the user access that information. Plenty more on this in previous posts.)

So: why did the main cast members for all the shows in my collection suddenly disappear from the Cast & Crew Bars of each of the 11,459 unique episodes?

Because previously that information came from TMDB (Infuse’s background acquired database) … now it’s coming from my local .NFO files. And my episode-level info files do not include main cast members — only recurring players and guest stars (all actors who don’t appear in every episode of a series).

I generated those .NFO files in Kodi — which scraped the information from TMDB (same as Infuse). In fact, I’ve scraped them all anew in the past year specially to make sure the content of my local data (particularly, movie and TV show titles and dates, and episode numbering) matched that on TMDB — solely to aid scraping in Infuse.

Turns out Kodi, to save digital space, doesn’t think it necessary to include series regulars in the .nfo files it creates for each specific episode of a series. Instead, Kodi creates one additional .nfo file for each series — always named “tvshow.nfo” — that it places in the primary folder of each TV series; and in this file it names the cast members who appear in every episode.

When Kodi displays the cast and crew for a specific episode, it will pull that information from both the primary “tvshow.nfo” file, and the specific “(series name) - SxxExx - (episode title).nfo” file.

Infuse apparently ignores the “tvshow.nfo” file.


So I spent another day frustrating myself trying to figure out TinyMediaManager.

Gods, I hate that program. It overwrites your existing data constantly and NEVER gives you a warning if the next button you push will cause it to do that.

I spent a LOT of time searching for and choosing and often CREATING my own well matched poster, season poster, and fanart images (all of my 4K titles, for example, use the exact same 2000x3000 poster template; because mismatched ones bother the heck out of me) TMM just makes them disappear without warning. Kodi never does that. I had to recreate a lot of art (or pull it back down from TMDB, where I usually, but not always, upload it) after it wiped me out a couple times.

But TMM will include primary cast members in the per-episode .nfo files, so that’s something. I finally managed to get it working (carefully) and update my .nfo files for a few Television Series to Infuse’s liking (as a test, and proof of process) … but it scares me to think of having to give this psychotic software access to my entire television collection just to get back the functionality I already had before Infuse added this new “feature”. And how updating all my .nfo files through TMM will likely takes hours — or days worth of effort.

I don’t want to have to do it. And even if I do, it will only make Infuse’s issue with duplicating cast and crew entries (when searching) even worse.

Infuse broke itself. It needs to be fixed.

And what’s going on here??

Look at the headshot of Michael Dorman. It bounces up and down through various episodes of “For All Mankind” Season 2.

They both link to the same (duplicated) Michael Dorman listing in the database (as shown in the search box — there is not an extra entry with a different spelling or headshot attached). I don’t save Cast & Crew photos locally — any headshots used by Infuse, were gathered by Infuse.

About the „Double Actors“:
This happens if you use mixed Movies (some from TMDB without NFO/XML, some with XML, some with NFO)…

This could not be merged together and that is why the „Double Actors“ appear…

The Solution is to use NFO-Files only for every single Movie. Then the Actor only appear once!

It seems every „Type“ use a different Database!
XML, NFO and the online TMDB.

This is not true.

I do have .nfo files for every single movie and TV show episode.

That doesn’t stop Infuse from still downloading its normal database from TMDB for my entire library.

I know I wrote an awful lot, but that was because I wanted to clearly explain everything I learned.

Mhhh, that’s strange. My NFO-Files all work correctly and I only see the Data which I have overridden with that Files. And I correctly see only the pictures I have set with an http-Link :thinking:

But what happens when you do a text-search? Still only one name?
When you click on one of your nfo added cast members, does it show you every other title in your collection that person appears in? Because that’s not my experience.

I searched for “John”. Hundreds of results. (John’s, Johnson’s, etc.)
Most duplicated.

I have to say I’m currently still in the process of building my Library.

You are right, if I directly search for an Actor, I still get duplicate Results…

But the PrePlaybackScreens working correctly if the Actor correctly is overridden with an NFO-File. Then I can show other Series/Movies with that Actor.

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Thanks for confirming the duplicates. :+1:t3:

Yup — the playback screen with the actor overridden — that will show results, but I suspect only other movies or shows where that actor is also overridden?

In my case, where ALL actors are overridden, I’ve been finding over and over again that when I check actors I know have lots of parts in lots of my movies … Nicolas Cage, Brad Pit, Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, etc… that list will never show ALL applicable titles. Sometimes dozens are missing. But no matter who I check, even if they should only show up in a couple titles in my full collection; often the list isn’t there at all.

I noted two things:

First; if I did a text search; one of the entries (pulled by Infuse from TMDB data), will always have the complete list of all titles in my collection. The other entry will usually have less; perhaps far less. This entry is the one Infuse builds from scraping my NFO files, and is the source of the titles listed when you select a photo from the pre-playback screen.

Second; The NFO-based database does not scan to completion before Infuse status indicates it has completed building it’s library. It seems to scan on demand.

If I click on Die Hard, and then on Bruce Willis; Depending on how long I’ve been scrolling through my collection, I may see several, or many of his titles. But I might notice other movies are missing: perhaps later Die Hard movies, or 12 Monkeys, or The Fifth Element, or Moonrise Kingdom, or The Sixth Sense — all movies I know I have in my Collection.

But if I navigate to The Sixth Sense, and click on Bruce’s name, that movie will be added to the list. In fact, I can navigate to The Fifth Element and then 12 Monkeys without clicking on any names, and then navigate to Moonrise Kingdom and click on Bruce, and all three titles I visited will now also be in the list.

Essentially, if I slowly went through the main Movies list, just highlighting each title in turn, I could force Infuse to scrape my entire collection and THEN both lists will be the same; and EVERY actor searched duplicated.

You might not even need to all that. It might be enough just to get Infuse to notice the title, to force it to scrape your local artwork, turning those gray squares into posters. I haven’t tested this fully, but I’m not convinced that alone is enough.

I can also confirm the duplicates. I nearly have 11000 Movies, so guess the fun I am having.

For me this has been a problem a long Time, at least a couple of Months, and with every update, you are crossing your Fingers.

Furthermore I am a collector of weird, bizarre and obscure cinema, primarily Horror, and many castmembers do not show up (I guess, the more unknown status, the less info or none at all because of the Database).


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Oh boy! I can extrapolate … :flushed::grimacing: … my tally this morning stands at 3,458 movies, and 11,499 television episodes.

Thank you for confirming the doubles!

:crossed_fingers:t3:Crossing my fingers Firecore will be inspired to finish cooking this (presumably long awaited) fulfilling of users’ request to accommodate local cast and crew overrides. Love that they were responsive; regret I wasn’t party to the beta where I could have perhaps pointed out the problems I’ve discovered with the implementation prior to it going live.

Following the guidelines about the custom XML metadata I have the following entry for a TV Show under the cast tag:

  <name>Kevin McCloud</name>

The question is simple: How do I link that author with the author appearing in TMDB? Apparently the search is not by name, because using only the name I can’t see the thumbnail or is linked with the other episodes. In fact, Kevin is a Host, not an actor.

I had been searching in the forums about this, but the XML metadata format is not really well documented, any help will be nice.

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You can’t.

Though I believe you can include cast photos if you host them locally (which I’d hate to have to do), or include links to them all at TMDB.

Infuse supports the .nfo <actor> tag, and additionally its sub-tags <name>, <role>, and <thumb> — but not <order> — as seen in this snippet from Firecore’s sample .nfo:

        <name>Gal Gadot</name>
        <role>Diana Prince / Wonder Woman</role>

I personally hate the Firecore added “support” for custom cast info to Infuse — it broke .nfo usage so badly, I can’t use it at all.

.nfo was once a perfectly convenient way for me to use Sort by Title to control Infuse’s sorting of my collection. I prefer the majority of my film franchises grouped together, in chronological order — but with all films remaining as individual movies in the Library and not hidden in a Collections folder). Previously I could edit titles to custom-sort a franchise like Indiana Jones and keep Raiders of the Lost Ark sorted ahead of the following films in the trilogy (or quadrilogy :confused:), and not orphaned alone in the Rs. Or, for another example, keep the entire Jurassic Park and Jurassic World series’ together without The Lost World (Jurassic Park 2) winding up orphaned in the Ls.

Rarely does a series’ chronological order match their alphabetical order (as the first three Bourne films did … until the 4th and 5th came out).

Further, I would use .nfo to customize the film’s Titles to distinguish between multiple versions … for example:

I’ve got a few versions of A New Hope: I’ve got the vandalized blu-ray Special Edition; and the far better fan reconstructions 4K77 and D+77. I’ve got 4 copies of each LoTR film; Theatrical and Extended each in both HD and 4K. What are there, maybe 5 versions of Blade Runner? 3 of Apocalypse Now? You get the Idea.

[ I don’t care to use Infuse’s new grouping feature because I invested a lot of energy into creating my own unique posters and fanart for each version and I prefer they all be displayed in their full glory independently. ]

Sorting by filename is workable enough alternative with movies (since Infuse actually sorts by folder name if there if only one film per folder — so the actual media files’ filenames can remain consistent with TMDB identification) — but since, (apparently unknown by Firecore until I brought it up), Infuse will not and, as structured, can not sort TV Series and TMDB Collections by filename, it was preferable to me to sort by title and update my movies’ titles via .nfo, to compensate for being unable to use filenames throughout the app. HOPEFULLY Infuse will someday give us the option to sort different categories and views and folders each by our own preference instead of one global preference; but until that day, or until Infuse fixes the cast and crew search and .nfo issues; I’m stuck having to switch between the two views and my experience using Infuse since this happened is definitely worse than it was when I began using it — (that is, apart from when Firecore finally fixed my original day-one pet-peeve — the unnecessary splitting of TMDB’s three ampersanded TV genres).

The root of the problem is that if you include Cast and Crew tags in your .nfo — and more insidiously, even if you REMOVE cast and crew TAGS from your .nfo — the very presence of an .nfo causes Infuse to disconnect your title from it’s TMDB-derived cast and crew database.

Even if you have no cast & crew tags in your .nfo — as I didn’t, because I didn’t care to change the info on TMDB, which is certainly accurate enough for me — suddenly every movie and TV show has ZERO cast members visible on the titles’ details pages.

What’s really happening here is not what one would desire — that IF cast tags exist, they be incorporated into Infuse’s existing cast and crew database.

Even IF EVERY SINGLE .nfo FILE for EVERY ITEM IN YOUR COLLECTION includes the full cast and crew details downloaded from TMDB itself (via Kodi or TMM) — and thus is identical to Infuse’s own — Infuse STILL CREATES A SEPARATE DATABASE. And only Infuse’s now mostly invisible TMDB-sourced database is build and completed in the background by unobtrusively and completely indexing one’s entire media collection.

So no matter what, Infuse still downloads cast and crew metadata and images from TMDB, and uses that in its primary database. Only, Infuse won’t display that information to users who have .nfo files. Instead, it only displays the cast and crew members specifically included in the .nfo — for which Infuse CREATES AN ENTIRELY DIFFERENT DATABASE — and only if it their titles were indexed.


If you select an actor’s headshot (or their generic icon when images haven’t been imported), the only results you’ll see are that actor’s films or series which you’ve already accessed by navigating to them in the UI — not results from all the titles extant in your library which they actually appeared in.

Unlike with Infuse’s own TMDB-sourced cast and crew database, the .nfo-sourced database is not created in the background. Cast and crew members’ films and TV appearances are only added to the database “on demand” — that is, only after you, the users, browse to (and perhaps, necessarily) open up a given title that they appear in.

Worse, if you conduct a manual search for an actor via the Home Screen search :mag: button, you’ll get TWO results for every actor who was scanned into the .nfo database. That means, two identical headshots, side by side.

If you click one, you’ll be shown their complete filmography. If you click the other, you’ll only see a very limited list; because you wouldn’t have navigated yet to view every title in your collection.

There’s no way to tell the two headshots apart.

Firecore has broken cast and crew search completely.

I’ve wrote extensively about this to @james — but it seems not to be a concern of theirs at all.

This “new feature”, I imagine, isn’t really benefiting anyone; and it has RUINED a huge part of the Infuse experience for me. This “feature” has been the largest turd Firecore has yet dropped since I began using and loving this software.

It boggles my mind how it has gone this long without correction (especially considering that searching for cast and crew through the :mag: icon was further broken a few updates later).

Since Infuse users cannot create custom movies or tv shows with .nfo files from scratch — I can’t see why their would currently be any demand at all for allowing custom cast.

If a cast member is missing from TMDB’s cast database, one can far more easily go to TMDB and add them. Doing so will help not just one’s self but all fellow metadata consumers.

So, yeah, what you’re seeing is the currently expected behavior of Infuse; because Infuse is broken.

Ah — the other key point. @James at one point said XML might not be as fully supported with regard to Cast & Crew. I’m not aware of this is still true or not. My apologies.

@James — the sample.xml shows <cast> tags — but no cast <image> tags.

Why would Firecore even read <cast> tags from .xml if cast photos aren’t included?

If Infuse refused to read .xml <cast> tags (as Infuse previously ignored those tags in .nfo) — I could change all my .nfo files to .xml and Infuse would no longer either kill my display of cast and crew or kill my searching for cast and crew.

Better yet, if you believe the addition of recognizing cast and crew (especially considering the absence of ability to create custom entries for home movies or whatever … any content not allowed on TMDB) is important enough, why not add an option in the settings to ignore .nfo cast and go with TMDB cast?

Or, better yet, just go with TMDB cast if there are no <cast> tags in the .nfo?

This parallel-but-unequal dual database situation is really terrible.

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Forgot to follow-up on this topic, but support for the <tmdbid> tag for people was added awhile back, and this can be used to link cast/crew added via NFO files with those which have been fetched from TMDB.

If this tag is present the the actor name and image will be fetched from TMDB, so these fields do not need to be added manually.

The sample.nfo file in the support doc has been updated to reflect how this tag can be used.

And does this eliminate both the duplicate entries and lack of background indexing of .nfo-sourced metadata?

If so, I look forward to being able to resume using local .nfo to alter TMDB move titles (and thus regain control of Infuse’s sorting of my media collection).

Thanks for updating the topic.

Yes, with the tag present it will be linked when searching.

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And does this then fix the problem where cast members of .nfo associated titles were only added to Infuse’s cast member database when a user navigates to each individual movie? Or does this remain an issue only with cast members whose .nfo entries do not include the <tmdbid> tag?

Do you know of software that batch updates cast member tags in existing .nfo files with the correct <tmdbid> tag?

Working here for me.

What I tested.

  1. Add NFO file for The Matrix (1999) with <tmdbid> tag for Ben Affleck (880)
  2. Clear all metadata
  3. Let Infuse scan library
  4. Search for Ben Affleck

I see all normal TMDB titles which actually have Ben Affleck (EG The Town, Batman v Superman, The Accountant, etc…) as well as The Matrix which is using info from the NFO file.

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