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Dear Sir:

Stars under the thumbnail are 'two state' (present or not), this is information-only GUI items, reflecting XMP rating of a given image file.

Stars (and color label buttons) in XMP Metadata panel are more complex, there are four possible states:

  • Single file is selected
  • Multiple files are selected
    • all files in the selected group have the same rating (color label)
    • they different rating
    • file name conflict is present, and that prevents creating XMP sidecars for selected files (e.g. file.DNG and file.CR2 are selected: no way to assign XMP sidecar for both files).

So, yes, GUI items are different in Grid/Filmstrip star indication and in XMP Metadata panel buttons.

Details are descripbed in the Manual (see 'Alternate mode' section, this mode will be the default one starting with FRV 1.4.6)