website hit counter August 2004 - Posts - Chris Lanier

August 2004 - Posts

Slow Posts, I Moved!

Okay, I just moved a day ago, so posts might be a bit slow for the next few weeks until I have everything done over here. :)
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New Expert Zone Articles On PMC's!

Using the New Windows Mobile-based Portable Media Centers with Windows XP
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/mobility/expert/bowman_pmc1.mspx

Viewing Recorded TV on a Windows Mobile-based Portable Media Center
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/mobility/expert/bowman_pmc2.mspx

Using Windows Mobile-based Portable Media Centers and Windows Media Player 10
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/mobility/expert/bridgman_PMCwmp10.mspx

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Extensive Review of Portable Media Center's!

Corey Gouker (Fellow MVP) has a great article up about his experience with the new Portable Media Center (PMC) from Creative Labs called the Creative Zen Portable Media Center.  Great review, with videos, tons of photos and more.

Creative Zen Portable Media Center Review, Part 1...
http://blogs.coreygouker.com/CommentView.aspx?guid=64fabf6f-8bac-4f2b-90c1-98e162520182

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WMP 10 This Week + MSN Music?

According to Sillicon Valley.com the release of Windows Media Player 10 is right around the cornor!  Not only that, the article states that Microsoft will also be opening the MSN Music Store with the release.  Could this be true?  WMP 10 and MSN Music to both launch this week?

Or a different note, I have to say good job to Microsoft for this Digital Media Mall idea that WMP 10 has.  If you don't know about it you can see the early makings in the WMP 10 Technical Beta.  The basic idea is to give you choices to online media stores to purchase music, movies, etc.  It is clear that this is were the media player market is going.  RealNetworks gas their store, Apple has the iTunes Music Store, now Microsoft will have the MSN Music Store.  But the good part is if the MSN Music Store does not have the media you are looking for, their will be other stores one click away!

Posted by chrisl | 3 comment(s)

Huge SP2 Issues With Intel Prescott P4's

Check it out before you install SP2 on your machine make sure you read this to see if it applies to you!  You will save yourself a huge headache it you happen to be running a Prescott chip.

Specific Issue - Prescott Processors and XP SP2
http://forum.aumha.org/viewtopic.php?t=7447

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Better DVD Playback Through MCE Project!

Could be an interesting thing to watch over at TGB.  Hacking up MCE a bit to allow for better quality DVD Playback and Post Processing with ffdshow.  Currently you can't do any type of post processing through MCE, for reasons unknown.  This would also allow anyone to fix the Dolby Digital output problems they have in MCE, which is also not uncommon.  Check out the thread below for more information and please add anything if you have comments.

Are You Interested In More Powerful DVD Playback?
http://www.thegreenbutton.com/community/shwmessage.aspx?ForumID=41&MessageID=66015

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DVR 2 WMV Final To Be Released!

It should only be a small amount of time now until the final version of DVR 2 WMV will be released.  Once released it will be in the Download Center at The Green Button (TGB).

For anyone who might not know, this application will allow you to take DVR-MS files (Recorded TV In MCE) and convert them to Windows Media Video (WMV).  WMV allows you to keep great quality and much smaller files.

This Download Is Now Live!

TGB Download Center
http://www.thegreenbutton.com/downloads.aspx
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Would You Buy A Portable Media Center?

Looks for some feedback here, are you interested in purchasing a Portable Media Center (PMC)?  If so, for what reasons?  If not, also what reasons.  What would you like to see different from what Portable Media Center's currently are?  Is the price to high?  Is this just ot something you would like to use?  Are you interested in other devices that do the same?  Are you just not sure about any of it becuase you have not seen or heard enough about it?  What bugs you about them from what you know or what do you like about them?

Introducing Portable Media Centers (Pre-Sale)
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/feature/-/534383/ref%3Dms%5Fpmc/103-7727374-9815048

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My DVD Collection 2004! [RC0 Released]

I don't think I have blogged about this before, but I'm kicking myself for not having done it before.  My DVD Collection 2004 is an DVD Indexing App for Windows MCE.  This application includes a nice interface to add your movies in Windows.  It will gets all of the movie information for you, so you get the Director, Rating, URL, DVD Release Date, Tagline, etc all downloaded for you with a single click.  This also does Actor's in the movie.  So it will get the Actors Pics for each movie, nice for indexing since you can search all of your movies based on one actor!  It also does a great job of importing the Cover Artwork for you, no need to go search and find it yourself.

Add all of that with the great, cool, clean interface from controling this via your remote from inside MCE 2004!  This is freeware, but if you like the application you might donate a bit for all of the hard work that was put into it!

Your DVD's can be stored on your PC, in compress formats, or just have them on the original DVD and pop it in when you are ready to play it.  You can still index them and keep all the cool extra info, without ripping them to your hard drive!  This is a huge plus for people who either don't wish to rip them or who just want a better interface for catalog or index them.

My DVD Collection 2004 Homepage & Download
http://www.binnerup.dk/mce/mydvdcollection/

My DVD Collection 2004 - Release Candidate 0
http://www.thegreenbutton.com/community/shwmessage.aspx?ForumID=26&MessageID=65977

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C00D11CD Guide Hits 10,000 Web Views!

Well, me little guide to Error 0xC00D11CD in Windows Media Player has now had 10,000 web views!  I guess I posted it maybe one month ago.  I idea is to better hit the Google searchers when they type in their error code.  I'm still not at the top for C00D11CD, but thats cool becuase fellow Digital Media MVP Marc Liron is!  I'm getting to the top in some of the less known errors like C00D1163, C00D11D4, 800C0008 and so on.

Guide To Error C00D11CD In WMP (Unknown Error)
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/10729.aspx

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I-O Data's New Network DVD/Media Player

Over at eHomeUpgrade they have posted on a cool new DVD Player that will be released in Japan, and hopefully later in the US.  The main appeal to me is that the AVeL LinkPlayer will play WMV9 content at 1280x720!  Not only that it will play DivX, Xvid, MPEG-1 and MPEG-2.  On the audio side it will be able to play AAC, MP3, WMA, PCM WAV, and OGG.  It will also support images, file formats include JPEG, BMP, GIF, PNG and resolutions of this can be a max of 2048x1532!

 

The ports on this device also look very nice.  Including DVI outputing at 1080i/720p/480p/480i, S-Video, and Composite.  And, of course, it features a 10/100 NIC and 802.11b/g.

 

From the looks of this device it will be a winner, we should also start seeing more device that support the same basic features because this device should be using the EM8620L Series processor from Sigma Designs.

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More iTunes Sharing Software [OurTunes]

CNET News is reporting that a new software application is out that allows users to share Libraries in iTunes over the internet.  Both AAC and MP3 files can be traded (Not Protected Files).  According to the report from CNET, “OurTunes works only among computers that share a network, however. That means that students or employees can swap songs on a local network, but cannot use it to browse computers on the Internet...”

This is the three or forth problem that iTunes has run into.  From hacked DRM systems, to sharing Libraries over the web, iTunes seems to be running into more and more problems and issues.

Hackers revive iTunes music sharing
http://news.com.com/Hackers+revive+iTunes+music+sharing/2100-1026_3-5316700.html

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Windows XP SP2 KB Articles

Steven Bink has a nice little page on his site that includes the released KB Articles specific to Service Pack 2.  Worth a quick look just to see what applications and hardware might be having issues with Service Pack 2.

Windows XP SP2 KB Articles
http://bink.nu/files/SP2KBs.htm

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classMCE SDK Launched

classMCE SDK for Media Center is a Software Development Kit for Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2004.  It allows you to quickly create applications that are integrated within the Media Center experience and without extra user interface coding required.  Unlike other SDKs, this does not include pages of javascript to include with your application.  Rather, all script logic is left for your application logic, while all the navigational control is encapsulated in DHMTL behaviors enabled by a proprietary .NET compiled component that can be redistributed with your application.  Your user interface can be kept in very simple .htm files for ease of maintenance. - http://www.thegreenbutton.com/community/shwmessage.aspx?ForumID=30&MessageID=65636

This could allow a lot more third party applications to be created, and I'm very surprised that anyone would develop something like this for MCE.

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More Problems For Apple (DVD Jon Strikes Again)

Well, Apple has run into yet another problem, this time with Airport Express product.  Airport Express allows users to stream their iTunes library wirelessly through their house.  But, DVD Jon (Real name Jon Lech Johansen) has released a bit of source code that allows streaming from different applications other then iTunes!  Basically, this could allow Linux users to get in on the action, or allow playback of other formats like Ogg Vorbis or WMA.  Remember, DVD Jon, is the same cat who published DeCSS, MyTunes, etc.  He seems to be in for the long run against any company or technology trying to limit what you can be with the media you purchase.

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More WMP Help Articles

Guide To Error C00D0032 In WMP
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/11444.aspx

Howto Find the Audio Codec Used In An AVI
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/11511.aspx

Howto Find the Video Codec Used In An AVI
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/11529.aspx

Guide To Error C00D1163 In WMP
http://msmvps.com/chrisl/articles/11496.aspx

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Sonic Solutions to Acquire Roxio’s Consumer Software

Here's a bit of an interesting deal.  Sonic has acquired Roxio's software division.  This would include Easy CD/DVD Creator or Easy Media Creator, whatever theyare calling it now.  Roxio now plans to focus on Napster, and their corporate name is now Napster too.  Now traded under NAPS on the NASDAQ.

This seems like a good place for Roxio to go.  IMO Nero was killing Roxio's burning software, just behind Roxio's burning software was Sonic's RecordNow.  Every HP product you purchase now comes with RecordNow, I remember a few years ago it was Easy CD Creator.

Sonic Solutions to Acquire Roxio’s Consumer Software Division for $80 Million
http://www.roxio.com/en/company/news/archive/prelease080904.jhtml

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The Top 10 Things that Microsoft and Tivo Must Each Do to Win Control of the Living Room

Thomas Hawk has a great post on his blog about what both MS and TiVo need to do to control the PVR in your living room.  I already reply to much of this over at TBG, but through i would post it back here to.  Read the link below, and then read the rest of this post.

The Top 10 Things that Microsoft and Tivo Must Each Do to Win Control of the Living Room
http://thomashawk.com/2004/08/top-10-things-that-microsoft-and-tivo.html
http://www.thegreenbutton.com/community/shwmessage.aspx?ForumID=41&MessageID=65284


I think a lot of the things you want will come with Longhorn, so not close enough in most of our minds.  The current average person still does not see their PC as their TV, simple as that.  Sure, everyone here see it that way, but go walk up and down your street and see how many people are using their PC to run TV throw.

When Longhorn ships (Assuming current dates are some what right) people will be seeing their PC more as a digital media server, you can tell this is were Microsoft wants it to go to.  The average person does not want to see a PC next to their TV.  Way want a standard black box that makes zero noise and starts in 1/2 of a second.  The start of this is Media Center Extenders.  Get the PC out of the Living Room, and put the dumb box that looks and feels like what people know now.

1, 2 and 3 - All HDTV related.  Average person doesn't have an HDTV yet.  Again, average.  Sure, you see many people posting here and other places that want HD, but i would bet you that most of the people that are posting make up 85% of the market.  The current ideas with Longhorn is that the basic PC will have a 16:9/16:10 monitor.  So, you can bet that the widescreen support has to be coming, but not fast enough for those who already have a 16:9 screen/HDTV.

4 - Everyone can relate to this.  DVD burning of DVR-MS files is not what it should be.  Microsoft problem?  Yes and No.  The hope is the both MS and <Insert DVD burning appplication maker here> are working together for better burning and to fix sync issues.  Burning data to DVD through Explorer will start in Longhorn.  Drag-and-drop DVD Video burning might come with that too.

5 - Has to come with Longhorn too.  Check out LonghornBlogs.com and read some of the stuff.  Very interesting stuff.

6 - Mostly covered already by me.  In terms of that metadata, i think it's sent out only when the song/program is being broadcast, not much hlep in making a guide. 

Yes, stuff like Stern's show could get on their, but at the current it sounds like something for a third party dev and the MCE SDK.  The one thing I can think of is that MS could talk with ClearChannel Communtions and see what they could get coming.  Of course this is more then something MS has control over.

Benefiting guests via MCE is not something anyone can argue at this point and time.  If I go to Radio Station "X" and say that MCE users would like you to send out a live feed of content they are playing, they will say "MC-What?"  I'll have to check out the the Research stuff, I don't think I have never seen that.

7 - Got to come with Longhorn again.  XP is very stable, but only in the hands of someone who knows what they are doing.  XP will never crash on you, it's a different story when applications crash.  Most people blame this on Windows, but (for instance), WMP is a very stable application.  Now, if you throw in a lot of DirectShow filter that suck at doing their job, the basic user looks at that and says that the OS is at fault or that WMP is.  MCE can only be as stable as everything else that goes with it.  A step to this is NVIDIA with ForceWare MM and NVDVD.  Partner with Microsoft to make it perfect for MCE.  This has one downfall though.

When an OEM ships a PC they do it with everything config. like s***.  All the OEM cares about is the money they are getting from RealNetworks, Microsoft, MusicMatch, Sonic, and so on, for including their applications on the PC and putting the icon on the desktop, starting the helper program with the PC, etc.  They also ship the PC with bad or old drivers.  So, a lot needs to change on their part.

8 - Guess I have never paid attention since i'm generally the lone user of my MCE box.

9 - Very much coming in Longhorn, again, not soon enough to catch the current users, but upcoming users and the tons of people who just don't know about MCE yet.

10 - I think Microsoft cares to much work on Media Center itself, leave the plug-in types applications to third parties.  I think we will see basic intagration with other Microsoft products, but things like home automation will very much start with the third party.  You might see a "Connected Home" from Microsoft where the features might be seen, but I would doubt that it's going to be the focus of the MCE Team.  These has basically provided to work for Microsoft with just about every major app.  They release an SDK and let the mind of the third party dev take control.

Note:  When I say "Coming In Longhorn" I mean that the tech. to make it work better will be coming, not that "Longhorn MCE" will have it.

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Windows Media Encoder 9 Series SDK

Download the updated version of Windows Media Encoder SDK. The set of interfaces in this SDK makes it easy for a developer to script the behavior of the encoder itself.

Overview
The set of interfaces in this SDK makes it easy for a developer to script the behavior of the encoder itself. This is an easy way to build a powerful media creation application on top of Windows Media Encoder 9 Series, and is ideal for building batch encoding tools or simplified encoding applications for end users.

System Requirements

  • Supported Operating Systems: Windows 2000, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP

Windows Media Encoder 9 Series SDK Download
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=000a16f5-d62b-4303-bb22-f0c0861be25b&DisplayLang=en

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Windows XP SP2: The Official Release!

Windows XP Service Pack 2 Network Installation Package for IT Professionals and Developers

This installation package is intended for IT professionals and developers downloading and installing on multiple computers on a network. If you're updating just one computer, please visit http://www.microsoft.com/protect.

Overview:

Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) provides new proactive security technologies for Windows XP to better defend against viruses, worms, and hackers.  In addition to a more robust security infrastructure, SP2 improves the security configuration options of Windows XP and provides better security information to help users faced with security decisions.

DO NOT CLICK DOWNLOAD IF YOU ARE UPDATING JUST ONE COMPUTER: A smaller, more appropriate download will be available soon on Windows Update. To receive this download, turn on the Automatic Updates feature in Windows XP to receive an optimized download of SP2. Please visit Protect Your PC for more information on receiving Windows XP SP2.

System Requirements

  • Supported Operating Systems: Windows XP, Windows XP Home Edition , Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows XP Professional Edition

Windows XP Service Pack 2 Network Installation Package for IT Professionals and Developers
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=049c9dbe-3b8e-4f30-8245-9e368d3cdb5a&displaylang=en

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