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Media Center Software

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Hello all

I'm looking to convert my old laptop into a media center. It's a moderately powerful machine (Dell Latitude 610), although a bit dated.

1.86GHz Pentium M


ATI Mobile x300

Intel PRO/Wireless 2200BG

Windows XP

I've been looking at several free or FOSS media centers:






I was wondering if anyone has any experience with any of these and can recommend which is the best. I've tried a few of them and haven't been too impressed yet. I've got a ton of different types of files so compatibility has been a big issue.

I'm also open to switching to a Linux version such as MythTV, although I've had issues with various drivers in the past on this machine. Never had much luck with the video card or wireless.

Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated.


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If you're open to Linux, give Mythbuntu a shot. It combines MythTV with the ease of Ubuntu.

Is there a windows compatible backend?

I will be streaming from a windows PC (no way around it, several work related windows only programs). Dual boot isn't an option since I won't be the only one using the media center and I don't want it to shut down when I need to use the computer.

I like what I'm seeing so far though. Thanks for the recommendation.

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My friend has a custom built $10,000 file server which he uses for his media network(mentioned this to show his dedication). This is his full time hobby. He uses SageTV and loves it. I don't think it is open source

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