Home » HTPC Tips and Tweaks » Keep your HTPC awake during Media Browser refreshes (or other stuff).

Keep your HTPC awake during Media Browser refreshes (or other stuff).

I rarely have to run a full refresh on Media Browser.  With the service running in the background all the time and new material being scraped in minutes after it’s added, it’s pretty self-sustaining.  However, there are occasions when my metadata and image caches just need a simple “oil change”, in which they need to be completely nuked and rebuilt from scratch.  Just to get that “new car” smell…ya’ know?  The problem I always run into is that with the size of my collection, the refresh always gets interrupted by the sleep timer I have set.  Today, I solved that.

MB Refresh Refresh

SourceForge is a software goldmine.  Unfortunately, you do also have to trudge through piles of bat doody to get to it most times.  Still, the resolution to my little sleep issue was solved with some free software I found on there, aptly named – Coffee.  Coffee does just what you would think, it keeps your HTPC awake.  It does this by interrupting the sleep cycle while monitoring the network traffic on your NIC.  This is important because it’s just what I need while running a refresh on my Media Browser caches.  A full refresh of all my metadata images takes several hours and my sleep timer is set for only about 30 minutes, I believe.  So, instead of sitting there and moving my mouse every >30 minutes, I can deploy this little jewel to keep things alive for me.

Main tab Main

SourceForge has downloads for Coffee that suit both x86 and x64 systems, so get the correct one for you platform and install.  Upon running, you will have two tabs – Main and Extra.  I plan to only pour myself some Coffee whenever I need to do a full refresh, so I don’t really need to pay attention to the Extra tab.  As you can see in the image, my HTPC is pulling down at nearly 2MB/s and I have it set to the default 10KB/s threshold.  So, what’s going to happen is when it is done fetching, the network throughput should drop below 10KB/s and since I have the MBService set to sleep after refresh, it should go right to sleep (at least within the 30 minute timer I already have set).

Extra Extra

Problem solved!  The Extra tab allows you to run Coffee with Windows and that may suit some of you, but I will probably only need to run this on rare occasion.  There’s also a Sleep Blockers monitor so that you can see what else may be keeping your HTPC from taking a snooze.  Finally, if you like Coffee, buy the developer a cup!

One final quick note – I had only one issue with this program, which was there was no “minimize” for it.  I just realized that clicking the “X” sends it to the notification area in the taskbar instead of exiting.  Issue resolved!


  1. Maybe we should file a bug report so Media Browser prevents the PC from sleeping during a full refresh?

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