Amazon Unbox, Still

Looks like around 70% or more of my video library is DRM damaged and has to be re-downloaded. I haven’t even looked at the HD files yet, this is just the SD. I’m having to inventory these a few at a time.

This is going to take forever.

Despair.

On the good news front, very much loved The Power of Three and very much looking forward to The Angels Take Manhattan. Must have large supply of hankies ready. It’s Moffat. It’s going to hurt. A lot.

Update: re-downloading these episodes is not diminishing my number of available downloads, so that’s a good sign. Apparently the Amazon interface can recognize my computer as the same one that downloaded them the first time, so it still counts as only 1 of 2. Whew.

Also I suspect that the problem may be related to drive letter, the same way that the failures to download were. I think the episodes with damaged DRM actually have the info stored, but are linked by drive letter, and those episodes may have been downloaded when the external drive was E instead of D. That’s my guess.

Amazon Unbox – Woe and Woe Again

I’m pulling all my ads for Amazon Unbox/Amazon Instant Video. I can’t in good conscience recommend this nightmare to anyone. I’ve had to reinstall the program ten times just in the past three weeks to get it to download content that I bought.

Now it’s unable to find the content licenses to some of the episodes I’ve owned for a year, regardless how many times I go through the troubleshooting steps to get it to recognize my owned content. Just some episodes. I haven’t done a full inventory, but it can’t find the licences for Smith and Jones or Planet of the Ood. No problem finding them for adjoining episodes.

Content licenses was not found. Please wait a few moments and try again.

Text below to assist anyone searching for this error:

Content license was not found. Please wait a few moments and try again.

If you continue to see this message, try the Troubleshoot function in the ‘Settings’ menu.

You can also try to upgrade your DRM by clicking the link below.

Note: link will open in Internet Explorer.

Click this link, then click ‘Upgrade’ to upgrade your DRM.

I’ve clicked the link and successfully upgraded the DRM, but still get this message. I’ve done everything available to do in Troubleshooting but still get this message. Normally I can play these videos in Windows Media Player, but these affected episodes give me this:

Downloading media usage rights.

Downloading media usage rights …

Then this:

Window to Amazon page.

It just opens up a browser window to Amazon. Not to any page where you can click to re-download the license or anything, just the main page to Unbox. Does this not look stupid to you?

Further, when I tried the Refreshing the Cache item in Troubleshooting, not only did this fail to resolve my issue, but now my queued videos won’t download. Again! It looks like I’ll have to reinstall Unbox yet an eleventh time.

I can’t tell you how angry this makes me.

When I buy an episode, I only get and allotment of two downloads. I could download these a second time, but that means that if something happens again, I am SOL. Given how horrible this experience has been, I have no faith at all that it won’t happen again.

I am now deeply, deeply regretful that I didn’t use iTunes for this. Unbox even makes piracy look highly attractive, which is a crying shame when someone who sincerely wants to legally obtain and support the content she loves says it.

Update: Linking to this post in the Amazon forum in case by some miracle a solution is ever posted there. Someone else is suffering the same problem and getting no help at all. I already know that Amazon Support would be completely unhelpful, as they were when I had issues with this thing last year.

Amazon Unbox Issue

Provided the following to Amazon.com today by email but reposting here in case appearing in multiple locations helps get the word out.

Hi.

My issue is resolved, but I had to find the resolution myself. Sending to you so you can add to your info for others.

I had really bad problems with getting videos to download. For the first couple of weeks everything was fine, but then my videos remained queued and would not begin downloading. I tried all the tips you give concerning firewalls, service providers, disk space, etc.

Finally I realized that my system had reassigned a drive letter when I had plugged in a DVD drive, and that is likely what threw off the player. I use an external hard drive and it was automatically given a new letter by Windows 7.

No matter how I reconfigured the player to download to whatever drive letter, the videos still would not download.

I did a “temporary uninstall” then reinstalled the player and imported my videos that were still existent on the external hard drive. I happened to notice in this process that the user configures the destination folder twice. This may be the problem as the installed player only has one location to edit this setting. If the setting needs to change, the player may become misconfigured.

Now Unbox is downloading just fine. The only place you mention reinstallation as a cure is in the section about playback, so I thought you should know this.

Kind regards,
Spring Dew