Posted by: Jeremy Benisek (CyberAxe) Don't Panic Business Technologies | July 14, 2009

Windows 7, Extenders, NXE, HDTV, PIP whats wrong!

From a major lifelong Microsoft supporter, Why can’t Windows 7 be used as a Media Center extender including DRM sharing to Home Groups. We have 4 Xbox 360’s and 2 laptops running off of a DELL XPS 420 with 2x ATI HDTV Cards, I am unable to play any recorded content (I pay for) on my Laptops, Tablets or other non-xbox 360 or non-extenders. For years we’ve asked the Media Center group for two things they cont to ignore, PIP for extenders mainly Xbox 360, why can’t I play some card game while watching tv/Netflix and the ability to use my tablets and mobile devices including Zune with Media Center! I’m very unhappy my Zune’s can’t play any recorded TV in HD or Analog, I pay for! We have a demo house setup as Microsoft Best practices and Microsoft strategies say we should yet we run into walls and problems with true integration even with Windows 7 and NXE. Home groups are nice but must combat the current TV and DRM issues. I’ve been a beta tester and MCP for 10 years and run 200+ plus workstations and server in 4 companies. I’ve waited and waited and tried to support Microsoft year after year but the lack of true integration and device support throughout the Microsoft different departments is disappointing to say the least. I enjoy Windows 7 and my business software short of some oversights but Home and Personal use in Microsoft has been neglected for years. Last month I was beta tester of the month for the Mesh group, I work on XNA and a lot of other Microsoft products as well. I understand Microsoft is a Platform creator not a content creator. Also, Windows 7 Media Center HDTV over wireless-N/Lan lines still seem to have performance issues, at no point does the software allow you to down grade the quality of the video to combat bandwidth issue. Netflix downgrades the signal if buffering fails but Media Center doesn’t, you can’t even tell it what quality to record in anymore. • What happened to DFS in Windows 7? • Why is Access anywhere only in Windows 7 enterprise which we’ve not seen or heard pricing or anything else. I ask my Dell Enterprise rep about it and they had no idea. • Why can’t I access Windows 7 Performance and Information reports from any workstation like mmc has always allowed until Vista. I currently have to go or remote to each workstation to pull performance data off of them. Why? Why can’t I run multi-workstation performance reports? Including real time monitoring. • Windows 7 new supper taskbar why isn’t the thumbnail active as a smaller version of the screen, so I can hover over the thumbnail and click a link or button in the thumbnail instead of having to full screen the app. This should include the ablity to scroll over the thumbnail and have it scroll the page. Many times I might have 10 IE8 tabs open, I need to hover over the icon to see the preview in full screen but can’t scroll from here, I have to click the program and then move the mouse to the scroll bar. The mouse middle scroll button could solve this if the thumbnail was reactive. • There any many more issue related to performance and maturity of software lacking. I’m sorry for the lenth of my email but I’ve found very full places to express my fustration to Microsoft. Does Microsoft have a group of people that report and work on these issue? Why aren’t all of these programs and product in Connect so we can comment and get real feed back to the features we request.



  1. I have been using a Linksys DMA 2100 Media Center Extender with WINDOWS VISTA for quite some time now. I understand that they are no longer being manufactured. It is unclear to me why.

    Am I to assume, that when I upgrade my operating system to WINDOWS 7, my Media Center Extender will no longer function, or be supported under WINDOWS 7?

    If that is the case, WHY? Media Center was one of the best applications to be included in VISTA, along with it’s support for extenders.

    If MICROSOFT wants consumers to use their PCs as DVRs, will we have to stick with VISTA?

    • I see no reason your Media Center Extender wont work with Windows 7. Windows 7 support is very high for all devices new and old and Media Center is a core offering from Microsoft.

      This blog post was about a Windows 7 Media Center Laptop connecting to a Windows 7 Media Center Desktop with HDTV Capture Cards to watch tv. The Desktop HDTV is now DRM or Play protected and will not play anywhere but an approved Media Center Extender like you have. Another Media Center Extender you might think about is an Xbox 360 which is what we use.

      Windows 7 has an improved Media Center which should work fine with current Media Center Extenders. There are also Extenders coming out in new HDTV’s built in.

      You can add Netflix to your Media Center and watch movies and tv. Xbox 360 also uses netflix and allows you to watch a movie with up to 4 other friends on xbox live at the same time.

  2. Hey, you have a great blog here! I’m definitely going to bookmark you! Thank you for your info.And this is **Best HDTV** blog. It pretty much covers ###Best HDTV## related stuff.

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