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I am having difficulties with timestamps of my videos. They were originally created with Windows Movie Maker in WMV format and I manually set their creation date. Later I migrated to Ubuntu and converted all of them to MP4 format using the avconv program. The problem is that Picasa (in Ubuntu) is ignoring the timestamp of the MP4 file (which I can set to whatever I want) and is still reporting the original conversion date and time. Is it some kind of MP4 metadata? How can I view/edit it?

EDIT: As an example, I converted ZOO.wmv to ZOO.mp4 using avconv -i ZOO.wmv -strict experimental -b:v 2000k ZOO.mp4.

Mediainfo of the original WMV file:

General
Complete name                            : ZOO.wmv
Format                                   : Windows Media

File size                                : 24.5 MiB
Duration                                 : 1mn 39s
Overall bit rate mode                    : Constant
Overall bit rate                         : 2 074 Kbps
Maximum Overall bit rate                 : 2 079 Kbps
Movie name                               : ZOO
Encoded date                             : UTC 2010-09-27 21:08:25.781
Application                              : Windows Movie Maker 2.1.4028.0

Video
ID                                       : 2
Format                                   : VC-1
Format profile                           : MP@ML
Codec ID                                 : WMV3
Codec ID/Info                            : Windows Media Video 9
Codec ID/Hint                            : WMV3
Description of the codec                 : Windows Media Video 9 - Professional
Duration                                 : 1mn 39s
Bit rate mode                            : Constant
Bit rate                                 : 1 900 Kbps
Width                                    : 720 pixels
Height                                   : 576 pixels
Display aspect ratio                     : 5:4
Frame rate                               : 25.000 fps
Standard                                 : PAL
Bit depth                                : 8 bits
Scan type                                : Progressive
Compression mode                         : Lossy
Bits/(Pixel*Frame)                       : 0.183
Stream size                              : 22.5 MiB (92%)
Language                                 : Czech

Audio
ID                                       : 1
Format                                   : WMA
Format version                           : Version 2
Codec ID                                 : 161
Codec ID/Info                            : Windows Media Audio
Description of the codec                 : Windows Media Audio 9.2 - 160 kbps, 44 kHz, stereo (A/V) 1-pass CBR
Duration                                 : 1mn 39s
Bit rate mode                            : Constant
Bit rate                                 : 160 Kbps
Channel(s)                               : 2 channels
Sampling rate                            : 44.1 KHz
Bit depth                                : 16 bits
Stream size                              : 1.89 MiB (8%)
Language                                 : Czech

Notice that the Encoded date was set by Windows Movie Maker and it is not the timestamp of the file creation (set manually in Windows).

Mediainfo of the converted MP4 file:

General
Complete name                            : ZOO.mp4
Format                                   : MPEG-4
Format profile                           : Base Media
Codec ID                                 : isom
File size                                : 26.0 MiB
Duration                                 : 1mn 39s
Overall bit rate mode                    : Variable
Overall bit rate                         : 2 196 Kbps
Movie name                               : ZOO
Writing application                      : Lavf53.21.0

Video
ID                                       : 1
Format                                   : MPEG-4 Visual
Format profile                           : Simple@L1
Format settings, BVOP                    : No
Format settings, QPel                    : No
Format settings, GMC                     : No warppoints
Format settings, Matrix                  : Default (H.263)
Codec ID                                 : 20
Duration                                 : 1mn 39s
Bit rate                                 : 2 008 Kbps
Width                                    : 720 pixels
Height                                   : 576 pixels
Display aspect ratio                     : 5:4
Frame rate mode                          : Constant
Frame rate                               : 25.000 fps
Standard                                 : PAL
Color space                              : YUV
Chroma subsampling                       : 4:2:0
Bit depth                                : 8 bits
Scan type                                : Progressive
Compression mode                         : Lossy
Bits/(Pixel*Frame)                       : 0.194
Stream size                              : 23.7 MiB (91%)
Writing library                          : Lavc53.35.0
Language                                 : Czech

Audio
ID                                       : 2
Format                                   : AAC
Format/Info                              : Advanced Audio Codec
Format profile                           : LC
Codec ID                                 : 40
Duration                                 : 1mn 39s
Bit rate mode                            : Variable
Bit rate                                 : 184 Kbps
Channel(s)                               : 2 channels
Channel positions                        : Front: L R
Sampling rate                            : 44.1 KHz
Compression mode                         : Lossy
Stream size                              : 2.18 MiB (8%)
Language                                 : Czech
share|improve this question
    
avconv -i <input file> -strict experimental -b:v 2000k <output file>. Mediainfo does not output any date or time info for the MP4 files. –  crypto_rsa Jun 9 '12 at 20:08
    
Okay, interesting. Your MP4 file has no temporal information whatsoever associated to it. How are you changing the timestamp of the MP4? Through Ubuntu's GUI? And it's still reporting the Windows timestamp? –  slhck Jun 9 '12 at 20:42

1 Answer 1

It turned out to be a problem with Picasa, not the files themselves. When I temporarily renamed them (so that they disappeared from Picasa), then updated their timestamp and renamed them back, Picasa imported them again with the correct date and time info.

share|improve this answer
    
Interesting. Good to know – that caused me some headache yesterday because I couldn't figure out where the problem was :) –  slhck Jun 10 '12 at 19:33

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