What are my alternatives to Windows Media Center?


Episode 1195

Jerry from Mission Viejo, CA

Jerry is upset that Microsoft has discontinued Windows Media Center. Leo says that's because Microsoft wants to drive users to the XBox One, where they will be offering options similar to Windows Media Center.

Leo says the HDHomeRun PRIME is a cable top box that uses a cable card to do many of the same functions as Windows Media Center for $150. He'll be able to take his cable card out of his computer and into the HDHomeRun PRIME.

What are my options when Windows Media Center stops working?

Episode 1191

Tyler from Thousand Oaks, CA

Tyler has been using a cable card with Microsoft Windows Media Center on his computer to watch TV, but now with Microsoft killing WMC, what are his options? Leo says that there are other options including Kodi (formerly XBMC) and Plex. The Chatroom says TEAM Media Portal is an option because of the digital rights management issue. The reason why Microsoft killed Windows Media Center is because they want people to buy the XBox One game console. Tyler can watch, but can't record.

What are my options to replace Windows Media Center?


Episode 1184

Brian from San Clemente, CA

Brian has a home theater setup with a home theater PC and he's worried that Windows has abandoned the Home Theater PC concept, including Windows Media Center. Leo says that it has been a long time coming since Microsoft has killed Windows home server in favor of Windows 8. Now killing Windows Media Center is just part of that. Microsoft doesn't want to be in the media center business, they want customers to get an XBox One.

What's the best way to network my PC to my home theater?

Mac Mini

Episode 1152

Greg from Palmdale, CA

Greg finished installing his home theater system and he wants to know what device is good for watching movies on his computer. Leo says that Plex is great on the Playstation or Xbox, or even the Roku or Fire TV. It connects to the media storage, such as a networked desktop. Leo likes it because it's simple. A Mac Mini would work great, and it's small. It has HDMI out so it'll plug right into his AV receiver.

How can I stream old videos online?

Episode 1036

Justin from Burney, CA

Justin bought a Roku Box and has a bunch of movies and TV shows he bought on iTunes and wanted to stream them via Plex. Leo says that copy protection won't allow that, though. Justin says that's why he's buying discs again. He's wondering if he can rip them and stream them online? Leo says that once they're ripped, he could, but he'd have to have a media server and then log into it remotely. It's doable, as long as it's just for private use.