Last Updated on Tuesday, 27 March 2012 09:49 Written by Alan Monday, 16 April 2012 07:00
Microsoft assured users that Media Center would be a part of Windows 8 and they made good on that promise, but unfortunately the software is completely unchanged from Windows 7, at least in it’s current “Consumer Preview” form. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it also is a bit boring and not what Windows users had hoped for. That got us thinking about non-Windows alternatives, which means either Apple or Linux, and if you’re a computer geek then you likely want to look at Linux.
There are several Linux versions that can replace Windows Media Center, but there are two that we wanted to focus on – Linux MCE and the brand new XBMCbuntu. Both offer more functionality and extensions than Windows, but being Linux, they aren’t quite as simple to set up and use.
This distro brings you all of the XBMC goodness along with a few extras. For one it’s a full stand-alone Linux build. When started up it boots directly into the XBMC interface – think of it as a Windows app that you have loaded into “Startup”. You still can access the full Linux desktop and do upgrades. There are also many add-ons for the operating system.
This OS is probably the most full-features of the two. It comes with support for home automation, telephone, home security, mobile apps, and more. Linux MCE recently went from Alpha to Omega and they are hoping to hit Beta soon. Don’t let this scare you off as it’s been around several years and is quite stable.Learn More