A SoftSled By Any Other Name
Peter Near just
commented “Personally, I don't care
about a software extender any more. In the day of "MCE on every
vista machine" why would anyone invest in creating a remote interface when
there will be a native interface pretty much universally available?....”
Instead I would very much hope that they are working on networking multiple
vista machines to operate as a pool.”
This is very true.
Bryan has been pushing this too for the past year or so. “SoftSled” as a "Software Extender" is not really what people need
anymore, but I think it is the best name for it. What we need is a way to share/pool tuners, share
a common EPG, and share media (eg. resources and media) among all Vista PC’s accessible though Media
Having a true “Software Extender” to connect to the main Vista
Media Center PC isn’t needed when the PC’s in question already have Vista Media
Center loaded on them. Now here is where
it gets tricky. Microsoft has pushed the
client/server method of things in Media Center for a while (also the concept behind Windows Home Server). Where you have a main Media Center PC and
other devices connect to this PC. All
media is basically concentrated on the main PC or server.
The other way to do things is to not care where the media is, and just
have the software be smart enough to find everything on the network and group
it together within the single Media Center UI or library.
What people want in a “Software Extender” is a way to do
these. We want a simple and easy
solution to point other Vista PC’s to the main Vista Media Center PC
(client/sever) and/or to scan the network for all media files/resoruces, and automatically add
them to Media Center. This would includ setup of tuner pooling/sharing.
If a Vista PC has tuners, any other Vista PC should be allowed to make use of
them. You should also be able to share a
single common EPG to accomplish this.
So, “SoftSled” as a true Software Extender is not what we
want. Is there is a better name for it
though? I personally think it shouldn’t
need a name. The product should already
exist with a name that is already there; Media Center. Until we see that, I think the term "SoftSled" should be known by the community and Microsoft to mean the above.