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Convert movies to MP4 (playable on Apple TV and iOS)

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[uPDATED: October 16th, 2013]

[uPDATED: October 24th, 2013]


I've released the Alfred 2 workflow (on github) to control the apple-tv-converter (on github) gem.
thanks to Zhao Cai for his Alfred 2 Workflow Ruby Template.


main features

  • convert movies to MP4 format playable on apple tv (does not allow multiple conversions in parallel)
  • can convert multiple files and/or folders in one batch
  • fetches movie metadata from IMDB and tv shows metadata from TheTVDB.com
  • can optionally automatically rename the converted file to the recommended format for Plex Media Server
  • works on Mac OS X Mavericks


  • requires rvm to be installed
    • currently needs to have any version of ruby v1.9.3 to work (can't install some gems on v1.8 and some dependencies don't work yet on v2.0)
  • requires ffmpeg to be installed for the conversion process (recommended installation via Homebrew)



Since the first usage will install the required gems, it can take a while before getting any kind of feedback (around 1 minute), so it is recommended that the first use is checking the conversion status. If all goes well, it should output  Large Type message "Apple TV Converter was installed".



  • converting
    • first, select one or more files or folders either in Finder or Path Finder...
    • and then use the atc keyword on Alfred 2 to start the conversion
    • after a while, you should see an mp4 file show up next to the original
    • when the process completes, you'll get a notification
  • status report
    • use the keyword atc status to get a status report for the conversion in a Large Type message
  • cancel conversion
    • use the keyword atc cancel to cancel the conversion. you'll get a notification indicating that the cancelation was requested...
    • and another one when the process actually stops
    • note: no cleanup is made, and a partly converted file will be left on the directory.
  • update
    • use the keyword atc update to update the underlying apple-tv-converter gem.
    • you'll get a notification stating whether the update isn't necessary
    • or one indicating which version the gem was updated to



if you find any bug, or have any problems using this, feel free to get in touch with me.

Edited by pedromr
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That is odd, I gave the workflow to a couple of friends to test, and they didn't have any problems.


It appears to be a problem with hpricot, maybe statically linked something in my computer... I'll try looking into it.

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  • 1 month later...

Sorry for not saying anything sooner, I've been completely swamped at work.


Haven't been able to look into this yet, but I'll probably need to implement some way of installing the gems on the first use, as hpricot needs to install native extensions...

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  • 4 months later...
  • 4 weeks later...

Hi there.

It might be something to do with the workflow's configuration.

Have you tried with a single file, and just type 'atc' in Alfred (no spaces)?


I've also found that since the last update of Path Finder 6 (which I use), I've been getting a lot of problems with the workflow. I'll have to try using Finder to see whether the same problems occur.

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