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Microsoft Media Center 2005 DRM is draconian


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By Charlie Demerjian: Sunday 12 September 2004, 10:13

MS WILL ANNOUNCE MEDIA CENTER 2005 one month from today. If you want to be surprised just go away, otherwise, read on. It seems evolutionary, not revolutionary, with one big exception.

The biggest thing they added was the concept of media center extenders, or specifically one of them called XBox. Yes, with a kit, the XBox becomes an extension of your media center PC. If you thought we were joking when we said MS doesn't care about games with the XBox, here is your proof. They want to own your entertainment, it just so happens that the easiest way is through a console. Sony should be very very afraid....

http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=18385

On the up side, there are some very nice features, most notably support for three tuners. This means that you can simultaneously record three TV shows at the same time.

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DRM? Forget that... I dont want my MPEG2 recordings wrapped up in a bloated Microsoft Copyright format...

[EDIT]btw Media Center 2004 is actually Windows XP Media Center with Service Pack 2, so in theory those with an older version of Media Center can simply install SP2.

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Their attitude to DRM is GGGGGGGGGRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR :blink: But the good news for me is that it should really limit consumer acceptance :P

I'm pretty sure they are referring to MCE2005/6 ie 'Symphony' not MCE2004 (which afaik doesn't support multiple tuner devices at all)

They have already anounced (and i'm sure that I posted it here recently) the unbundling of MCE so that it can be sold as a separate software product. IIRC by the end of the calendar year.

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You are right, sorry I mis-read an article. WMC 2004 (codename Harmony) is included in Service Pack 2.

There are other alternatives to Microflops offering, including nVidia's new nStant OS - hopefully those dont have any type of DRM "wrapper".

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This has always been coming, later than expected but microsoft do want to own the home - the playstation2 has it's own media extender for a while now - http://www.broadq.com/qcast2.htm

My xbox already has media extensions on it and i'm pretty happy with it - gone from a htpc to an xbox and stb. Price wish they are hard to beat.

If only we could get the xbox to support a usb dvb tuner - which makes me think...

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This has always been coming, later than expected but microsoft do want to own the home - the playstation2 has it's own media extender for a while now - http://www.broadq.com/qcast2.htm

My xbox already has media extensions on it and i'm pretty happy with it - gone from a htpc to an xbox and stb. Price wish they are hard to beat.

If only we could get the xbox to support a usb dvb tuner - which makes me think...

The XBox uses standard USB ports except for the actual USB connector, and a variety of Linux is available on the XBox (though you need a mod chip), so I would imagine it wouldnt be that hard to get a USB DVB-T tuner working.

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Guest Gizmomelb

if you're willing to 'sacrifice' an XBOX to Linux, then there's an XBOX version of Gentoox with MythTV included. More info at:

http://gentoox.shallax.com/

Based upon "Gentoox" and the tried and tested "MythTV", the media center currently allows for playback of videos and audio while offering more advanced features such as an image gallery, DVD ripping and encoding, CD ripping and encoding, web browsing and weather forecasting. All the time an FTP server and SAMBA server are running in the background to allow you to upload new media and even download ripped media to/ from your Xbox.

"So whats so great about this?", you may think. Legalities. XBMC/XBMP, while being very good piece of software, are illegal. This is because they have been compiled with illegal, stolen software development kits (XDK) and require illegal, hacked BIOSes to load them. Gentoox Media Center (or Gentoox MCE for short) only requires a special version of Cromwell to boot. Cromwell, as many know, is a clean implementation of a custom BIOS for the Xbox which was designed specifically for booting Linux and nothing else.

The software also comes with a quick and automated rescue feature, so in the unlikely event of something going wrong - you can recover from it without even getting out of your seat to change CDs.

Gentoox MCE can be operated entirely from a remote control, though a keyboard and Xpad are HIGHLY recommended. Plans include PVR support in the future among other things.

but it doesn't appear to support USB 1.0 TV tuners of any description as yet.. but since the author has appeared to work out the XBOX USB bugs, and appears interested in adding PVR capability - it shouldn't take too long (lucky timing that the Linux DVB list recently added support for the Twinham/ K-World USB 1.0 DVB-T tuners!).

Gizmomelb

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