12 Essential Tips to Using XBMC as the Perfect Media Hub



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This seems to look good. I am curious how is it handling .mkv, .mp4, .ogg and other, not so common, file extensions. Does it run faster than a standard Windows 7? If it does I would definitely install it on my netbook, which I use only for playing media when I am on the move or when I am too lazy to get out the bed.



That version of FFmpeg is really old. Why not grab a newer one from somewhere like http://ffmpeg.arrozcru.org/autobuilds/? 64-bit Windows builds are also available from there now.

Also, this line seems to create images with a smaller file size and higher quality:

for /r %i in (*.avi) do ffmpeg -i "%i" -ss 5 -f mjpeg -sameq -vframes 1 "%~dpni.tbn"



Have to agree a HTPC running win7 is superior to XBMC, which is really only good for (are you ready for the surprise) the xbox.  As I don't favor the serious noise of the original xbox I'd just assume have a win7 HTPC.  Maybe get it to run on a 360 and I might consider it.



An HTPC running XBMC is superior to running Media Center (or whatever they call it now) on HTPC simply because XBMC folk add funtionality which Media Center will NEVER have. Including playing certain exotic file types, or simply playing a rar file (which a lot of content come packed in). Even setting up Media Center to actually scrape the correct information is a hassle in itself because you can't assign a name to Pee-Wee folder as title: Pee-Wee Goe to Town.... you need to actually rename the folder/files etc. But with XBMC you just make an NFO file which can be updated however you choose and it's so intuitive, you can change all sorts of detail to the way YOU want it to be.



  I run windows 7 on my HTPC and what am I missing here by not running XBMC? I can do all web sites, so I am left with, what, changing skins?



You guys have got to try Mediaportal. It supports TV recording as well as having a better interface for movies and music. 



If only it supported TV recording.  That's the deal breaker for me.  Media center is far from perfect, but the only time I need to switch apps on our HTPC to watch anything is for Hulu.  I realize most people just pay the man for DVR, so it's probably just me.



A nice way to run the HULU desktop app from within WMC: http://www.secondrun.tv/default.asp?action=drawpage&pageid=77


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