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RSS feed stop gap solution


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I found this quote on the transmission forum, but it will work equally well with µtorrent. (I changed Transmission to µTorrent in the quote) Untill the developers implement RSS feeds, this should work as a stop gap solutions:

So TV season started, TVShows is a MIA and I didn't want to go back to using the big, bloated, blue monster just for RSS, so I decided to cook up a small helper app myself. And after using it for a while, I thought.. hey maybe some other ppl might like this ;)

Long story short, I prettied it up a bit and voila: here is the oh-so-imaginatively-named Automatic ()

How it works - the short version:

It's pretty simple... Setup some subscriptions, specify a refresh time and - here's the important bit - tell it to download stuff into the folder µTorrent is watching. That's it.

The slightly longer version:

It's basically a pref pane that acts as a UI for a helper daemon (technically, an agent). I hate needless background processes as much as the next guy, so the helper pops up only when it's time to check the feeds and stays open for a small period of time; typically it should stay open only 20sec or so, although obviously this depends on how fast the connection is and how many new items it finds. Apart from the pref pane, it also keeps a couple support files in /Application Support/Automatic/ but that's about it.

If you also want your downloads to go to specific folders, unfortunately Automatic can't help there as there is no way for it to tell µTorrent to download a file to a specific folder. The solution I use is Hazel, an excellent file manager utility that organizes files based on certain rules. As a bonus, it acts as an uninstaller too, offering to clean up preferences and support files for apps you throw away. You can check it out here: http://www.noodlesoft.com/hazel.php

Just one note on deleting: because of the way the helper is currently bundled with the pref pane, before deleting the pref pane please stop Automatic. Nothing serious will happen if you don't, you'll just get a message in the log every time the helper is supposed to get launched. This is the first thing I want to change, I just wanted to look into a solution that didn't involve keeping the helper in a separate location.

Please also note that although I've been using it for almost 2 weeks now and tried it on a few computers, it is in beta condition, so you may run into bugs. The good news is, the worst it can do is print a few error messages to your log or download a couple extra files.

If there's enough interest in this, I may look into adding some features like a history and whatnot. We'll see. Same goes for Tiger support; it's Leopard only, but if ppl whine loud enough I may consider making it Tiger-compatible as well ;)

Anyway, I hope you find this useful... please leave any comments, suggestions, feedback here or at droilidis -at- gmail -dot- com

Please be gentle, this is the first time I release a personal project into the wild :roll:

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  • 3 weeks later...

I've gotten really good results with ted: http://www.ted.nu/

It works really well and has tons of shows and stuff pre-configured... you can also customize it and add in RSS feeds. I should say that I *really* like it! It's also a good way to discover a new show.

I've been using it since before the µtorrent Mac beta and it's worked well with a few different torrent programs that I've tried it with.

That being said, I do miss the RSS feed downloader that's in the windows version, a lot! :D

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  • 1 month later...


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