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Windows 7: Media Extender Help (No XBOX 360)

31 Jan 2012   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
Media Extender Help (No XBOX 360)

I just purchased the Ceton InfiniTV 4, as I will be returning two of my set top boxes.

  • One of my STBs was connected to my computer. I will be installing the Ceton card onto this computer (Windows 7 Ultimate).
  • My second TV, which is upstairs, CAN have a computer connected to it, an HP TouchSmart (Windows 7 Home Premium, I think), to be more exact. It's a large SD TV, it's probably a good 10 or so years old.
  • I do not own a XBOX 360, nor do I plan on buying one.
Can I configure one of my 4 tuners to send through my wireless network, to the HP TouchSmart upstairs? I'm currently on an 802.11g network, because this is what my FiOS router has. Again, I'm basically wanting to do this without purchasing an XBOX 360.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2012   #2

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JOSHSKORN View Post
Can I configure one of my 4 tuners to send through my wireless network, to the HP TouchSmart upstairs? I'm currently on an 802.11g network, because this is what my FiOS router has. Again, I'm basically wanting to do this without purchasing an XBOX 360.
Just in case you didn't know of its availability, you can also get a Linksys DMA2100 for an extender. They don't make it any longer but they are still available for purchase (new or used). They are simply WMC extenders, absolutely silent, use virtually no electricity and generate no heat, and are perfectly acceptable. They even come with a WMC remote. I have two of these in my own Ceton setup, with no xBox in the story.

As far as wireless goes, I'd be careful, especially with 802.11g. Whether you're using it to share one of the Ceton's 4 tuners with your second Win7 machine, or whether you're using it to deliver recordings made on the primary HTPC (with the Ceton installed in it) to an extender/HDTV, you will require 25Mb/s bandwidth for a 1080i program, either recording/watching live or playing back from the HTPC to the extender/HDTV. If you're 802.11g network can support 25Mb/s reliably then it could work. But I'd be cautious about expecting this to be flawless. A 100Mb/s wired connection is clearly the way to go for that leg.

Also, I don't know if your FIOS situation delivers programs marked with "copy-once" or "copy-freely", but "copy-once" is considered "copy protected" by WMC. It can only be played back on the HTPC that did the recording, or it can be delivered from that HTPC to an extender/HDTV. But it cannot be played back by WMC on the other PC on your home LAN.

So if you do want to watch a program fed from the 3-tuners on the primary HTPC or the 1-shared-tuner on the HP TouchSmart and the program is copy-protected, you're going to have to record it on both machines to provide the ability to watch it from either machine. Else you'll only be able to watch it via the particular machine you used to do the recording, on a monitor/HDTV connected to the HTPC or via extender/HDTV connected to that HTPC. That's just the rules of the DRM game as implemented by WMC and Cablelabs and Ceton.

Furthermore, you also cannot use WMC or WMP on the second machine to watch a copy-protected program recorded on the primary HTPC machine. You can only watch that copy-protected program via extender/HDTV delivered from WMC on the machine that did the recording.

On the other hand, if your FIOS marks most things as copy-freely, then none of these limitations apply for those copy-freely (unprotected) programs. You can watch them using WMC or WMP on either machine, from the "recordings" folder on the other machine, with no restrictions. So you'll only have to record them once and then you can play them back on either machine using WMC on either machine.

So all in all, if most content is copy-protected then honestly your ideal recommended implementation is to go with using all 4 tuners in the Ceton card in the primary HTPC, and install a DMA2100 extender at your HDTV (ideally via wired Ethernet, but the DMA2100 can also work wireless, if you can keep at least a 25Mb/s stream going to it reliably from the router). Carving out 1 tuner for your HP TouchSmart and recording some programs on it and other program on the 3-tuners left in the primary HTPC will just be a hassle.

On the other hand, if most content is copy-freely then you can pretty much do whatever you want, realizing that whatever is copy-once (protected) you will have to live within the constraints I described above.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Mar 2012   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium x64

You can also look into remote potato. Probably still run into certain copy p protection issues but it allows you to stream recorded or live TV from the server computer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Media Extender Help (No XBOX 360)

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