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Discussion Starter #21
Dual boot from VHD is totally plausible. I do this with my Windows 7 boxes as well so that I have a work install and a play install. The best thing about it is no virtualization software required! ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter #23
I confirmed last night that Pete's hack still works on Windows8 CP. Not surprising though since it seems to be pretty much a port of the Windows 7 version.
 

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How does the rest of the world run a HTPC?
Win MC is not the be-all and end-all of HTPC software. Until 7 months ago the answer was to use SageTV. We will see if Google does anything interesting with Sage but MS appears to have totally lost interest in HTPCs and is focussing on the Xbox.
 

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MS isn't the only one. While claiming that interest in HTPCs is falling and that standalone media players are gaining in popularity, Boxee has stopped making a PC software product. Google has gobbled up and discontinued SageTV, presumably for integration into online services.

Other options to Windows MC are MediaPortal, NewPVR (formerly NPVR) and XBMC. They are all decent products and good alternatives to Windows MC. MediaPortal and NewPVR provide better TV support for non-US residents. XBMC doesn't have very good TV support but is easier to set up and use as a general purpose media player.
 

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I think you meant NextPVR rather than NewPVR and it used to be called GB-PVR. There is also MythTV which runs on Linux.

I wouldn't call XBMC an alternative to WinMC since it doesn't have PVR capabilities. Nor does Boxee. If you are including those two then I would add Plex.

The media companies and (perhaps) the tech companies likely want us to move away from PVRs and towards streaming as it gives them more control over the content. Once you record something with PVR software you have a lot more control over what happens to it and you generally can move to other devices, convert to other formats, etc. This is less true of WinMC vs the alternatives as they have DRM implemented in it but the alternatives generally do not have any DRM.

With streaming sites you never know when the content will disappear - like the thousands of movies that disappeared from Netflix today.
 

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I think you meant NextPVR rather than NewPVR and it used to be called GB-PVR
You are correct. I should have checked that. It is also referred to as NPVR. Wonder why Wozniak isn't suing them over the Next name? ;) XBMC also has a Linux version that will work with a MythTV front end. Now back to the Windows 8 Consumer Preview MC discussion...

I wouldn't be at all surprised if MS planned on abandoning MC in favour of streaming solutions. They have all the DRM in place and have deals with the big studios. MS just hasn't been very successful in the consumer marketing department.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
All it will take is them or someone else coming up with a nice Metro App MC skin front end or complete replacement for MC and that will be the end of it.
 

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Assuming that the Metro UI gains traction on desktop PCs(as opposed to mobile devices) which IMHO is no certainty. I tried the Dev Preview for a bit and hated the Metro UI.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
I am in complete support of them separating MC and having it as an extra add-on. If they plan on updating it, then I'll gladly pay but if its paid and they do nothing, especially not fix the long outstanding issue of not supporting ATSC in Canada, I will find my MC fix elsewhere.
 

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I would bet that most retail PCs will be sold with just the base Home Premium equivalent. Ones geared for HTPC duty may include the MC/FP Sku.
 
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