An alternative to our Guided Tour Video
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
FAQ 01: Why can’t I play a file in MediaGun?
MediaGun supports about 50 formats and extensions, yet it doesn’t cover every file type under the sun!
See the MediaGrid above to find out. If your file extension is not found there or your file does not show up in the MediaGun Backstage, then it’s not supported.
If it does, but MediaGun is not able to play it, this can be for two reasons:
- Your file requires the installation of external system resources as described in the notes under the MediaGrid
- Your file might be invalid or damaged, or its extension could be incorrect.
FAQ 02: How can I ensure best playback performance?
Make sure you are not running other programs unnecessarily when you run MediaGun.
Avoid playing images with a density higher than 150 DPI, with a resolution bigger than your screen, or uncompressed videos. (See also FAQ 8)
FAQ 03: Can I build a Master List from files which are in different folders?
No. All the elements of a Master List must reside in the same Resource Folder. However, the workaround is to use shortcuts. Many MediaGun users use Resource Folders which are entirely made of shortcuts! This enables you to collect elements from different folders into the same Resource Folder. And because shortcuts are very tiny files (1 KB), you don’t have to give up hard drive space. Of course, when you create a Portfolio, MediaGun finds the target files of the shortcuts and copies them with the Portfolio. It does also warns you if the link with any target file is broken.
FAQ 04: How do I make a shortcut?
- Select the file(s) that you wish to make a shortcut of (this is called the target file).
- With the mouse cursor on the selection, right-click.
- Select “Copy” from the drop-down menu.
- Open the folder where you want to create the shortcuts
- Right-click in that folder and choose “Paste shortcut” from the drop-down menu.
- For better readability in MediaGun, you may delete “Shortcut to” in the shortcut’s name.
FAQ 05: How can I play a PowerPoint presentation in MediaGun?
You need to install either PowerPoint 2003 or later, or the PowerPoint Viewer 2010, found here.
Playing a PowerPoint slideshow in a Solo Portfolio requires either PowerPoint 2003 or later or the PowerPoint Viewer 97, found here. More recent versions of the Viewer are not yet supported. We hope to address this limitation in the future.
This restriction does not apply to a PowerPoint slideshow playback in a Standard Portfolio or in MediaGun itself.
FAQ 06: My Solo Portfolio hangs up on a Flash animation (.swf). What can I do?
Users need to explicitly modify the .fla file – in Flash – so that it quits at the end of the animation. To do this, place the following script command on the last frame:
Also, make sure that the animation is NOT set to play in a loop.
Production settings of Flash™(.swf) animations for playback in MediaGun
To allow the correct playback of a Flash™ (.swf) animation in MediaGun, some basic rules have to be followed while the animation is being created in the Adobe Flash™ software.
The following tips relate to versions CS3, CS4 and CS5 of Flash. For older versions, animations should be exported as .swf files and tested in MediaGun before final publication.
Tested with AS3
Animations entirely based on the timeline without any nested clips are quite straightforward to handle. All you have to do is to place the following command on the frame where you want the animation to stop: fscommand("quit","");
Example of an animation created on the timeline, without any nested clip
When nested clips are used, you should reserve enough frames on the timeline of the main scenario. This will enable MediaGun to play the entire animation.
Example of an animation with nested clips (end)
The quit command is placed at the end of the last nested clip.
Example of the last nested clip, with the quit command
The Animation publication (export) settings
For more information on the Flash™ environment, please refer to www.adobe.com.
FAQ 07: How do I make sure that my Portfolio can be played on any Windows operated PC, even without MediaGun?
You should opt for file formats supported by a standard Windows operating system, or internally by MediaGun, so that no further addition is required. Please refer to the MediaGrid.
Please note that if a file cannot be played because the additional resource is not present in the system, a message will appear with a link to the relevant downloadable installer.
A MediaGun Master List can be exported and played on any Windows based PC, whether MediaGun is present or not. We call such a list a Portfolio. The creation of a Portfolio by MediaGun is 100% automatic.
There are two sorts of Portfolios.
• Standard – Choose this option to create an interactive Portfolio where the end user uses a Control Bar to navigate in the Master List. However, they will not be able to change the content of the Portfolio.
• Solo – Choose this option to create an automatic, self-running Portfolio. This can be very useful in the context of exhibitions, events, company lobbies, digital signage, internal communication, etc. You can set the Portfolio to play in a continuous loop until the ESCape key is pressed (or via a Quit command by the Task Manager), or once only, before it quits automatically.
A MediaGun Portfolio is SECURED. In the event that any media is modified or replaced after the Portfolio is created, it will not be played.
To create a Portfolio from any MediaGun Master List:
This dialog box appears.
2. Two options, four possibilities.
Option A includes a Windows Setup program that installs all the system components on the target PC (at the operating system and Portfolio specific levels) needed to run a Portfolio. Choose this option if you are confident that the receiver has the ability and the privileges needed to run a Windows installation AND that an installation of MediaGun is not already installed on the target PC. With this method, running a Portfolio for the very first time requires Administrator’s status.
Once this has been done on the target PC, subsequent Portfolios for that target machine can be generated with options A and B unchecked.
Option B copies all necessary Portfolio (non-system) components needed to run a Portfolio into the Portfolio folder itself. Choose this option if you know that the target machine has the Visual Basic runtime components installed (Windows XP or later has these by default) and for whatever reason you believe the receiver can't run the Portfolio setup installer (See Option A, the recommended method). With this method, running a Portfolio for the very first time requires Administrator’s status.
All subsequent Portfolios for that target machine will need to be generated with option B checked.
Choose to include both A and B if you aren't sure whether or not the receiver satisfies any or all of the above requirements and want to make sure they can run the Portfolio no matter what is the case.
Choose to include neither A or B if you are sure that the target machine has the Portfolio setup installed already or has MediaGun installed.
If you decide to not include Option A and it later turns out that it was needed by the receiver, MediaGun will connect to our server, and the receiver will get a chance to download it and install it. It is called Portfolio Support Setup Installer and can be downloaded here.
If you wish to inform the recipient of your Portfolio about its User Interface and functioning, you can find a help file here.
FAQ 08: Why are my pictures too small, too big or too slow in MediaGun?
This is because MediaGun does not resize them. This is to prevent performance slowdown or loss of quality.
If a picture is larger than the screen’s, or of a resolution in Dots per Inch (DPI) larger than 100, it may require seconds to appear on the screen. This may be acceptable for printing, but not during a presentation!
Say you have taken some great .tif or .jpg shots with a 7 megapixel digital camera. The resolution is 3200 x 2400 pixels. If you play them as they are on your Full HD laptop (1920 x 1080 pixels) you will only see the center of your pictures, and you may have to wait…
Another example is if you use a picture document which is meant to be printed and not to be displayed in a multimedia context. Such a file has a typical definition – or density - of 300 – 600 DPI or more.
In MediaGun – or in any other software program – it may take a long time to show up on the screen, for no extra quality!
If a picture smaller than the screen is enlarged, quality degradation occurs. (pixellation and other artifacts). That’s why MediaGun does not enlarge it. Instead, a black background is displayed around the picture. The solution is to prepare your pictures at the screen resolution – for example 1920 x 1080 pixels, and at a definition of 72 DPI. Also, make sure that its color mode is RGB, 8bits/color.
FAQ 09: Why doesn’t my PDF file display the correct font(s)?
This is probably because you did not check the option “Embed all Fonts” in the PDF Maker advanced settings of the program where the file was created – typically MS Word.
FAQ 10: How do I play a QuickTime VR file in MediaGun?
Change its extension from ‘.mov’ to ‘.qtvr’.
FAQ 11: I get error message 339 when starting MediaGun. What should I do?
Go to the Control Panel
Choose “Add & Remove Programs” (pre Windows 10), or “Programs and Features”. (Windows 10).
Find Exponent Software MediaGun
FAQ 12: How do I make use of the Word™ .doc PDF templates?
This feature enables you to generate ideal PDF documents so that each page exactly matches the destination screen, and gaps between pages are not seen. Every page will be rendered at the exact size of the screen, as if it were an image. The advantage being that MediaGun manages the duration of each page, based on the amount of words, which it does not for simple pictures.
All you have to do is to choose the correct empty Word Template among the selection we provide, to edit it, then to convert it to PDF.
The templates are found in the MediaGun folder after installation, in the folder ‘MS Word to PDF templates’.
1. Choose the template that matches the destination screen resolution, in pixels.
This information is contained in the Word .doc document file name, for example ‘1920.1080.doc’ for a 1920 x 1080 pixel (Full HD) screen. Choose between ‘1 page’ and ‘many pages’.
2. Fill the file with your input, save, convert to PDF.
This will ensure that each page of the document matches the exact dimensions of the screen, and that the page separation is not visible.
In a Solo Portfolio, MediaGun is able to change page automatically, by calculating the duration of each page according to its text and image content.
If you cannot find a template that matches your screen resolution, this is how you do it:
BEFORE WORD 2010:
1. In MS Word, go to File/Page Setup/Margins. Choose between Portrait and Landscape.
2. Choose the Paper tab
AS OF WORD 2010:
1. On the Page Layout tab, in the Page Setup group, click Orientation. Choose between Portrait and Landscape.
2. Click on Size, choose “More Paper Sizes”, then ‘Paper’.
3. Enter the Width and Height values. Unfortunately, these are in centimetres. To convert your destination screen resolution – in pixels – to centimetres, do as follows:
- Divide the width screen resolution (in pixels) by 37.89, enter the result into the Width box.
- Divide the height screen resolution (in pixels) by 37.89, enter the result into the Height box.
If your document has more than one page, you should subtract 0.4 centimetres to the width, to allow for the vertical scrolling bar.
For example, for a multi-page 1280-800 screen resolution: (use your Windows calculator):
1280:37.89=33.782000527843758247558722618105. Copy-paste from your calculator into the Width box of Word.
You now have to subtract 0.4 cm to leave space for the scrolling bar.
This yields 33.382000527843758247558722618105
800:37.89=21.113750329902348904724201636316. Copy-paste into the Height box of Word
Please note that depending on your regional settings, the decimal separator could either be a dot (.) or a comma (,)
FAQ 13: How can I use a DVD-video menu in MediaGun?
This can be done by either using a physical DVD disc, or by copying the ENTIRE CONTENT of the DVD onto a hard drive.
Only non copy-protected DVDs will be supported by MediaGun.
To integrate the DVD into your Master List:
1. Find the VIDEO_TS.IFO file in the VIDEO_TS folder of the DVD. Make a shortcut of the ‘VIDEO_TS.IFO’ file.(see FAQ 04-‘How do I make a shortcut?’)
2. Paste this shortcut in the Resource Folder relative to your current Master List, together with the other files.
3. Add it to your Master List.
This file gives you access to chapters, to language selection, to subtitles, etc., provided they have been included by the DVD authors.
IMPORTANT! To include a DVD to a Portfolio, see FAQ 15.
FAQ 014: In a Solo Portfolio, the duration of a pdf file is incorrect.
The time during which any text file is displayed in a Solo Portfolio is determined by the amount of words and images. For this to work for a pdf file, its copy or extraction must be allowed. This is determined at the stage of the file creation. See below the document’s properties, as shown in Word in PDF Preferences / Security.
You should leave the default settings, as shown below.
FAQ 015: During the making of a Portfolio, some files were exported UNINTENTIONALLY! What can I do?
That may happen when the Portfolio contains an element of type .exe, a PowerPoint presentation, or a DVD. See video or read on.
These files may be linked to external media files. For example, an external audio or video file. The following instructions will ensure that THE ENTIRE FOLDER that contains the .exe or slideshow is copied by MediaGun. This enables them to find the external files they may need during the Portfolio playback and ensure that ONLY files you are willing to share are distributed with the Portfolio.
- Move the .exe or PowerPoint file to a new folder.
- Put any external file it needs in the same folder, or in a sub-folder.
- Double-click on the .exe or PowerPoint icon and check that all the links with the external files function.
- Re-establish them if necessary.
- Quit the .exe, right-click on its icon and select “Copy”.
- Open the Resource Folder of the Master List
- Right-click in this folder and select “Paste shortcut” (It must replace the previous shortcut to .exe)
- Start MediaGun and insert this new shortcut into the Master List if necessary.
Note about video clips and PowerPoint: Video clips can be made to play externally (‘linked to file’) or inserted (embedded in the PowerPoint file). Both techniques have pros and cons.
As external files, the PowerPoint file does not ‘inflate’ to contain the videos, which is better for performance. However, playing the external clips will require to be allowed to do so by a dialog box on every occurrence, which is pesky in the midst of a presentation.
There IS a way of permanently authorize playback for specific clips, by instructing PowerPoint of their exact location. However, as soon as the location of those clips’ changes, or if the presentation is played on another PC, the request for authorisation may pop up again. This is particularly counter-productive in the case of Portfolios, which are almost always played on a second machine.
As inserted files (embedded), the advantage is that the clips won’t require to be authorised to play. The setback however is that embedding them might make the PowerPoint file to grow in ‘weight’ and could make it slow at best, unstable at worst.
The solution is to leave it to MediaGun to play videos (and more!), and ‘video-less’ PowerPoint slideshows in the same MediaGun Master List.
DVDs have their own structure, so the steps are simpler than above.
- Make sure that either the physical DVD is present, or a copy of the entire DVD has been made onto a hard drive.
- Find the file VIDEO_TS.IFO in the VIDEO_TS folder.
- Right-click on its icon and select “Copy”.
- Open the Resource Folder of the Master List
- Right-click in this folder and select “Paste shortcut”
- Start MediaGun and insert this new shortcut into the Master List if necessary.
FAQ 016: How can I export external files linked to a PowerPoint presentation into a Portfolio?
External files can be of a type different from video clips.
Follow FAQ 15 instructions and make sure links in the Presentation itself are updated to target the new locations.
FAQ 017: How do I set up a PowerPoint presentation for automatic, non-interactive playback in a Solo Portfolio?
First, the .ppt/.pps/.pptx/.ppsx file must be made to play and exit entirely by itself:
To do so, in the menu «Slide Show» / select item «Rehearse Timings».
Play the entire slideshow at the rate you choose by clicking on the background to move to the next slide.
Check that you are happy with your settings by playing the .ppt automatically (F5 key)
When that is the case, select menu “Slide Show” / “Set Up Show”.
Set up as below:
FAQ 018: How can I avoid the black empty slide at the end of a PowerPoint slide-show?
In the menu “File/Options/Advanced” in PowerPoint, uncheck the box “End with black slide”. This is a global setting which controls all PowerPoint files. It is not saved at File level.
In a Solo Portfolio, that black slide is undesirable, as it would prevent the Portfolio to go to the next event. Remember, a Solo Portfolio is meant to play by itself, and the only command it accepts is the ESC key (or via a Quit command by the Task Manager), to exit.
There are currently two ways to work around this:
- PowerPoint should be installed on the machine which plays the Portfolio, and the box “End with black slide” in the menu “File/Options/Advanced” should be unchecked. Also, follow the instructions found on FAQ 17.
- Use the ancient PowerPoint Viewer 97, available here. This is because, unfortunately, more recent versions of the Viewer do not allow it to avoid the black slide. We are looking for a better alternative for the future.
FAQ 019: Why don’t my videos play full screen in my Solo Portfolio?
This must be set up in MediaGun, prior to making the Portfolio. The setting “Original” or “Full screen” on the MediaGun Control Bar determines the size of all videos in the Portfolio.
FAQ 020: How can I download a clip from YouTube?
When this is not possible directly from YouTube, a variety of programs exist, and they are often shareware.
We have successfully tested https://www.youtubedownloaderhd.com/