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Old April 2, 2008, 09:53 AM
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Default HTPC OS Pros & Cons

Hey all,
I'll be doing a new HTPC build in the next 6 months or so (once I have the $$$, lol) and I'm just curious to hear your thoughts on the different OS/Software options for an HTPC. i.e. Vista MCE (or Home Ultimate or whatever its called), XP MCE, Windows with Sage, BTV, Linux with Myth TV etc?

**edit**

I suppose I should also add that while I'm not a total Pro with Linux distributions I do have some experience with Knoppix and Redhat Linux.
Ans also that my main concerns are ease of use for people other than me and hardware/software compatability.

Last edited by aero_guy; April 2, 2008 at 10:05 AM.
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Old April 2, 2008, 09:55 AM
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One thing.... you may have a problem finding XP MCE available anywhere.
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Old April 2, 2008, 09:58 AM
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I figured as much, I just included it for completeness.
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Old April 2, 2008, 10:22 AM
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I use XP MCE still on my HTPC (mainly for drivers tho, older 754 motherboard) and have had no issues thus far, including the recent addition on my 3850 and the latest catalyst drivers. Vista always gave me problems for recording options, even though the Media center interface was a little more polished. If you decide to go with KnopMyth or another linux recording distro make sure ALL your hardware has linux drivers that are confirmed to work, otherwise headaches will ensue.
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Old April 2, 2008, 11:12 AM
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I have WinXP MCE on my htpc, and the only problem with it is the painfully slow boot up...it probably takes 3 or 4 minutes for all the garbage to finish loading. i tried going through startup and disabling some items but I have no idea which programs the media center actually uses. I also have vista premium running on comparable hardware and it is much snappier, although I cant comment on the multimedia functions.
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Old April 2, 2008, 11:40 AM
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Aero_Guy, just read Watchmen? hehe, nice Avatar
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Old April 2, 2008, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cptn Vortex View Post
Aero_Guy, just read Watchmen? hehe, nice Avatar

haha nope, first read it a couple years ago. Got me back into comics (or rather graphic novels if you prefer lol)
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Old April 2, 2008, 11:57 AM
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Yea! I'm reading The Preacher right now..... AWESOME
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Old April 2, 2008, 12:26 PM
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Preacher is so good. Lately, I've been reading Y: The Last man, Ex Machina and DMZ as trade paperbacks.
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Old April 2, 2008, 02:28 PM
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IN my experice (i have tried most of the windows HTPC software) here is waht i have found out.

1. Having a thirdparty dvd decoder is a must. I have had great results with the bronze edition of Nvidia PURE video. I use it for decoding / playback and digital audio pass through.

2. CCCP is a must for windows. Includes every codec you could want to playback media. And i anything's missing install the gordian knot codec pack just deselect the duplicates.

Finally teh Front ends all have different pluses and minuses. Personally if you have it Use XP.

1. MCE 2005 is by far the most complete solution, supports loads of feature plus it includes a free channel guide which can be problamatic for the HTPC buff on a budget.

2. If you don't have or can't get a copy of XP MCE 2005 i would use XP with Media portal. Media portal is very versatile just alot of pre confguration.

3. XP with Sage TV. i put this after media portal since sage tv is primarily about providing tv services and secodary to multimedia. The bonus is that it has a program guide inlucded. The downside is it's not free. The other downside is it's very picky to the version of java that is on the computer.

All 3 will work with the MCE edition remote or the 45 button happage remote.

There is my info. I didn't include any of my hardware recommendations since you didn't ask for it
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