VOTE PLEASE : Media Center App


I hate to go to a PC and or keep my iPhone with me all the time just to trigger something. I agree that the idea is to have a full automation to the limit that everything should happen automatically but guess what we are really not there yet and being a human our daily schedule differs. How many time you may have heard a complaint from your spouse, guest or a child who may not be technology savvy OR what good are those IP cameras if you can’t use them while you’re having a weekend family movie night - just think for a second? Wouldn’t be a good idea to have an interface on Media Center on your bedroom to ensure everything is lock and secure before you go to sleep OR watch who is on the door and unlock it for the maid or friend (who does not require a formal greeting) or set a different temperature or … so many cases.

And no I am not trying to be a couch potato but just options - nice ones. And BTW ultimately Z-wave/MCV is all about that - don’t you think?

I have few MCE’s at my home (Some old PC’s converted to MCE for streaming with one huge central repository connected via powerline Ethernet) and I am biased for MCE and really looking fwd to a nice, presentable, user friendly and rich on graphics Application. For me I should go to Vera Page only to setup and change something and not to access it - everytime. Are you?

Please Vote for an MCE App per your requirements.



Would you like to see a (Windows) Media Center App for MCV

Are you proposing to write it?

I thought about building a media center PC, for the living room- i even went to far as to pick up a few sale bits of hardware here and there- but I decided to bail and just get most of that sort of functionality through my TiVo’s. So I’m not too familiar.

Speaking of Tivo’s- I’d LOVE a plugin that allows control of vera through the tivo interface. The tivo has an open architecture for 3rd party apps itself. Homeseer happens to have one- so it’s certainly technically possible. Unfortunately I’ve got my hands full trying to learn the basics of luu :wink: Last I looked the homeseer plugin for tivo costs almost more than the vera system. ???

Anyway in the meantime until someone makes a plugin for media center- I’m curious- could one just use the browser on the thing to aim at the mobile device webpage that the plugin produces? Or can you not really navigate point and click with the related IR remote?

Having a home control interface into Media Center would compete with life-ware. That would be amazing!

I would rather Vera had a skinny browser running so that ANY lite browser could work.
The concept of having and APP for MCE, then one for the Wii, then one for a Playstation… doesn’t make sense to me. Give me a ‘lean back’ interface through a standard browser and I’m happy.

I’d like some kind of TV interface as well, but I haven’t decided that Microsoft W7 is the best option yet. Actually, it isn’t necessarily the OS but the hardware I’m trying to decide on. I bought a Mac Mini and one of the reasons was to try it as a quiet, low power, small form factor, HTPC solution (either with or without DVR). If I could decide on a MS PC that had low power consumption and was quiet and handled HD well and could function as a DVR, I’d use WinMedCen for sure.

I know I have several choices now (Dell Zino HD, Asus EEE Box HD, and many others) so I need to hit the HTPC forums and see what has been working the best. I really like the PLEX Media center on the Mac though…a very well done knock off of XBMC (but no DVR integration). Also unfortunately due to WAF, I can’t count on using my XB360 as an extender unless I leave it on 24/7. So I’ll end up using PC’s (or Macs) that can sleep when not in use. Actually, Linux Media Center was the clear winner in the Media Center wars as far as features go, but it isn’t as polished yet in some areas. I just really like the concept of the its Alpha-Blended Menu that pops up over what ever is on the screen.

So yes…I’m interested, but not ready for it yet, lol.

I’m getting close to throwing Windows 7 media center out of the window: it doesn’t do .mkv (yes, codecs, I know) , it doesn’t work with HDPVR without 3rd party workaround, it locks mouse so I can’t browse on the second monitor, and it shows all movise in one huge pile… I can’t stand seeing Inglorious Basterds next to Little Mermaid :slight_smile: I tried GBPVR as an alternative, but it’s ugly like donkey’s tail. What else can I try (Windows only)?

I happen to have 3 Media Centers at my home based on Windows 7 Enterprize (2 64bit & 1 32bit). The journey till stabilizing till I made it work for almost all codecs have been little challenging as far as trying, uninstalling and trying another. But since now it’s done (I hope) and whole family is having fun (so far). Although this is not the right forum for this but before you throw out the window I may (try to) convince you otherwise with the exception of HDPVR (no clue about that). Must mention that before jumping into management I worked as Chief Architect for Unix based solutions in several Fortune companies for a long time (don’t want to go into details) so I will always have my bias towards unix based solutions but I had to take windows route being least challenging with wide usability for Family (and guests – happen to have too many)

Main Media Server: i7, 6 GB, 8TB, IR & RF Remote, Fanless Graphics Card 512M with HDMI, Built in Sound 7.1 but I use Creative X-Fi P, Lian-Li Case

Codecs: Install (strictly in this order) Divx, Shark007 and finally DVD/BD player Cyberlink (I like it but you may choose something else like Powerdvd or windvd - I recommend Cyber though)
Resolving Movie, TV Show management:
Create Database: (FREE) MyMovies 3 (Server and Client) 20 mins-2 hours depending on your colection
Movie/TV Shows/Person Videos Browser: (FREE) Media Browser – 15 minutes most
Music: My Music but still looking for a better solution – 5 minutes most
Enable Transcoding case you stream out – 1 minute
Preferred : AnyDVD, Clone DVD to seamlessly rip and add to your collection including bypassing obstacles if any – 10-20 minutes

I moved away from couple of 400 DVD & 200 CD Changers along with BD player (let me know if want these) and have over 500+ movie titles along with numerous TV shows online while BD/DVD/CD are in their cases neatly stacked in my garage.

Last: Every case is different defined by goal/scope and resources. Linux/MAC/TIVO based solutions along with $300 boxes are availble for similar solutions as long as it serves your purpose. My goal, being a serious amature phtographer, was to create a single repository with ability to stream all across the house and sharing with family/friends was very inportant while having a sound backup system, just in case, and this has been working well for me so far.

Really hope you will find something for yourself and my apologies again to use MCV forum for Media Center Solution but I could not resist if this can help any shape or form.

My 2c and no more



I’d rather see a mythtv plugin… as reliable as tivo and so much better than mce… although i read recently that winblows 7 supports tuning adapters…
If I had more time, and more intelligence, I’d figure out how the tivo supports the cable cards and tuning adapters, and duplicate it on my myth backend. But that belongs on a different forum… so, in this forum, I’ll just say, if I had more time, and more intelligence, I’d write a vera plugin for myth…

not to wander too far off topic but I think the tuning adapter protocol maybe a public document on the cablelabs website.

I’m building one as we speak…



Another fellow MythTV user here! Been using it for many years now. Even had several development contributions before… Just don’t have much time for that anymore, unfortunately.

I use MythTV with HDHomeRun - external network-based ATSC/QAM dual-tuner receiver. And they are supposed to release later this year the CableCard version to be able to tune in premium channels!

As of MythTV plugin for Vera - I have thought about it before, but didn’t think it would be that useful… I guess I need to think of some really great use cases first! :slight_smile:

Thought I’d post what looks to be a good deal (although I haven’t tried one of these…heck I never heard about it before this). I have been using the ipod touch for wireless mouse and keyboard, but this seems like a compact alternative.

Looks good @ this price

I use Dinovo from Logitech, little pricey but works very well. Bluetooth connectivity.
Warning: No function Keys though and oncea month or so needs a battery reset due to locking

here’s a cheaper one, and (IMHO) better looking:

althought for small households, an iPhone/ touch app seems just as nice

looks nice and thanks for sharring. I was looking to buy one for my bedroom’s MCE and this will come handy

appreciate sharing again

I got ya all beat, why have a remote when you can have the whole PC…

Archos 9 pctablet

[quote=“Roger.NET, post:17, topic:165457”]I got ya all beat, why have a remote when you can have the whole PC…

Archos 9 pctablet

Less than flattering review of same:

I know you’re a MS fan, but this sounds like a sumo wrestler (Win7) riding on a lightweight bicycle. Of course, the MS solution will be a stouter bicycle…


I agree that its not powerful. This tablet SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A PC! Its way to slow and doesn’t have enough resources, but for running simple things like controlling Vera, or controlling my Home Entertainment system, ITS GREAT!

I f-ing hate iPad, I’m so disappointed in it. I expected more from Apple! Its SO Limited, where as the Archos is a full computer with a full OS. This makes its abilities almost limitless. Even though its not as powerful (the iPad has less power), it can be made to do what ever you want. That is what the iPad should of been.

[quote=“Roger.NET, post:19, topic:165457”]I agree that its not powerful. This tablet SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A PC! Its way to slow and doesn’t have enough resources, but for running simple things like controlling Vera, or controlling my Home Entertainment system, ITS GREAT!

I f-ing hate iPad, I’m so disappointed in it. I expected more from Apple! Its SO Limited, where as the Archos is a full computer with a full OS. This makes its abilities almost limitless. Even though its not as powerful (the iPad has less power), it can be made to do what ever you want. That is what the iPad should of been.[/quote]

I haven’t had a chance to handle an iPad. We may get one for a kitchen tablet. Maybe not. But Apple may have found a vein to mine here. We’ll see. It may not do everything, but if it does a goodly subset of the tasks I’d want that form factor device to do, and does them well, it’s easily as strong a candidate for me as something that can run arbitrary Windows programs marginally.

I’m guessing for you, “full computer with a full OS” means something running Windows, and in that idiom, it may seem limitless, even if it can barely keep moving. I would much rather have a more lightweight OS. I’m running Linux servers that are well below the hardware recommendations for XP, let alone Vista or 7. Those machines, in my idiom, are much more powerful and unlimited than any Windows box I’ve worked on. And I work on plenty–my employer’s IT shop is very Windows-centric, and I do a fair amount of development for enabling on upcoming Windows platforms.

Microsoft provides a very rich set of APIs for their platforms–a software barcalounger. But they don’t come free–all of those layers of services add a lot of weight. If you’re comfortable working in them, and willing to pay the $$$ for the development tools, you can develop the sorts of things they want and expect you to develop very easily. And once you’ve started writing to their software stack, it’s hard to get unhooked from it–you basically get to start over.

But they are addicted to their own software barcalounger. They can’t create a lightweight OS, because their own OS developers can’t get out of the barcalounger. The thing is comfy, but not much fun for a trip to the beach.

You hate the iPad. I am unimpressed with Win7, and will keep limping along with XP for the decreasing number of things I need to run that are Win-only. You’re disappointed in Apple. I am not disappointed in Microsoft–I’d have been nuts to expect Win7 to be anything but a more heavily padded barcalounger, and have been getting tastes of it for over a year. But I have been unimpressed for years, and am still unimpressed.

The whole tablet thing is funny. Netbooks are clearly laptops with reduced power and resources. So is a tablet a dumbed down netbook? Or is it a beefed up phone? The Windows platforms went one way, Apple the other. I was a Palm user for years, and am accustomed to the smaller devices having limitations. Can I accept that in something I can’t fit in my pocket? Dunno.