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post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
The fam's Tivo Premiere is starting to kick it, and I have a lot of spare hardware around that either needs to be put to use or sold, so I've decided to make an HTPC/home server/NAS. I have the hardware composition solved, but I want recommendations for software. These are desired traits/abilities:

1. Ease of use. The family is coming from Tivo and uses iOS devices, so I need a software platform that can tie in streaming services, OTA television, web browsing, and *hopefully* some sort of iTunes-ish integration. Simplicity and utility are paramount.

2. Software that leverages a straight forward remote control, a la the Tivo Glow. If the actual Tivo remote can be used, even better.

3. Software that allows at least some interaction with an iOS device, but is Windows based.

Open to any and all suggestions that meets the above criteria, so let's hear it. thumb.gif
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Up in the Air
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Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM Asus 24x DVD-RW Zalman CNPS14X 
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Ubuntu 14.04 x64 Windows 8.1 x64 HP w2207 Seasonic SS-660XP2 ATX 
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post #2 of 5
hmm... sorry to say this but what you're describing is pretty much an Apple TV!

I've been running HTPCs for maybe 8 years and I certainly wouldn't use 'simplicity' to describe my experiences!

MythTV is really good though and can do all you describe but I'm not going to pretend I know how to. And of course being open source you can always write the piece of code it's missing should you need to but while it's been going for probably more than 10 years it's still only on version 0.27 so there is still a long road ahead! I'd suggest starting off with MythBuntu as it's an all in one distro and you have the support of the Ubuntu community should you need it. It's also the most popular myth distro as far as I know so it seemed sensible for me to start off with that (after I failed numerous times to compile and install it myself!)

XBMC is a brilliant standalone media centre too - you can actually install it onto the 2nd revision of Apple TVs but not the 3rd and the 2's still carry a hefty premium because of this. You can install this to work separately on mythbuntu or you can go for the XBMCBuntu distro or anything inbetween.

Or you should use windows media centre.... but where would be the fun in a simple, hassle free computing experience!
 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 3820 P9X79 PRO Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI 
GraphicsRAMHard DriveOptical Drive
Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Samsung  Corsair Force 3 Samsung BD-ROM drive 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
XSPC Raystorm Full Copper block Phobia 150mm silver nickel reservior EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator 12x Noctua NF-A14 PWM fans on rads 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
EK D5 Vario X-top EK D5 Vario X-top Win 7 Pro x64 Dell U2713H 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Razer Lycosa ECGA SUperNova G2 1300W Caselabs TH10 Razer Lachesis 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
Razer eXactMat NI Komplete Audio NAD C320 Stereo Amplifier 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 920 d0 Asus rampage ii gene Asus GTX 480 Corsair xms3 ddr3 2000 c9 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
OCZ Vertex 3 Samsung 2.5" notebook drive Samsung DVD-R drive Noctua 120 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Noctua 120 Noctua 140 Noctua 140 Win7 x64 pro 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Mythbuntu 12.04.1 Panasonic 46" Plasma HDTV Apple Aluminium Keyboard  corsair hx650 
CaseMouseAudioAudio
Fractal R1 Apple Mighty Mouse Sony STR-DH800 Amp via HDMI in 5.0 speaker conf... Mordaunt Short 905 Centre, 902 front and 904 re... 
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Xbox wireless controller dongle 
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core 2 quad q6600 Asus P5K-E XFX 9800 GT Geil DDR2 4x1GB @ 1066 MHz  
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate Baraccuda Samsung HDD Seagate Baraccuda WD Caviar Black 
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Seagate Baraccuda Samsung DVD-RW Thermalright CPU cooler Mythbuntu 12.04.1 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 3820 P9X79 PRO Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI 
GraphicsRAMHard DriveOptical Drive
Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Samsung  Corsair Force 3 Samsung BD-ROM drive 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
XSPC Raystorm Full Copper block Phobia 150mm silver nickel reservior EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator 12x Noctua NF-A14 PWM fans on rads 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
EK D5 Vario X-top EK D5 Vario X-top Win 7 Pro x64 Dell U2713H 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Razer Lycosa ECGA SUperNova G2 1300W Caselabs TH10 Razer Lachesis 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
Razer eXactMat NI Komplete Audio NAD C320 Stereo Amplifier 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 920 d0 Asus rampage ii gene Asus GTX 480 Corsair xms3 ddr3 2000 c9 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
OCZ Vertex 3 Samsung 2.5" notebook drive Samsung DVD-R drive Noctua 120 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Noctua 120 Noctua 140 Noctua 140 Win7 x64 pro 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Mythbuntu 12.04.1 Panasonic 46" Plasma HDTV Apple Aluminium Keyboard  corsair hx650 
CaseMouseAudioAudio
Fractal R1 Apple Mighty Mouse Sony STR-DH800 Amp via HDMI in 5.0 speaker conf... Mordaunt Short 905 Centre, 902 front and 904 re... 
Other
Xbox wireless controller dongle 
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core 2 quad q6600 Asus P5K-E XFX 9800 GT Geil DDR2 4x1GB @ 1066 MHz  
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate Baraccuda Samsung HDD Seagate Baraccuda WD Caviar Black 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Seagate Baraccuda Samsung DVD-RW Thermalright CPU cooler Mythbuntu 12.04.1 
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post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply. I was "afraid" that Windows Media/Apple TV would be the best choices, but wanted to see if anything new had evolved in the HTPC arena the past couple of years. I'm vaguely familiar with Myth, and will look into it as well. I feel Apple TV would be too restrictive for what I want to do, so perhaps WMC is the best choice. Is there a preferred version of Windows Media?
Up in the Air
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-8350 Asus M5a99fx Pro r2.0 PowerColor 7850 2GBD5-2DHE/OC + Arctic Accelero S1 Kingston HyperX 8GB 1866MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM Asus 24x DVD-RW Zalman CNPS14X 
OSOSMonitorPower
Ubuntu 14.04 x64 Windows 8.1 x64 HP w2207 Seasonic SS-660XP2 ATX 
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Up in the Air
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FX-8350 Asus M5a99fx Pro r2.0 PowerColor 7850 2GBD5-2DHE/OC + Arctic Accelero S1 Kingston HyperX 8GB 1866MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM Asus 24x DVD-RW Zalman CNPS14X 
OSOSMonitorPower
Ubuntu 14.04 x64 Windows 8.1 x64 HP w2207 Seasonic SS-660XP2 ATX 
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post #4 of 5
well, if you can get a 2nd generation Apple TV then you can jailbreak it and run XBMC on it.

I suppose it depends how much functionality you want out of it and how many evenings you're prepared to spend fixing it when a botched update or similar causes it to cease functioning!

An Intel NUC with some USB tuners and win 7 would be an extremely capable machine and limit any headaches as it's all pretty standard kit. Win 7 comes with Windows Media Centre by default, it was only winXP that had the 'media centre edition' and from Vista onwards I think it's been included as standard. Not looked for it on win 8 but I'm sure it's there.

This will allow you to install and use itunes, XBMC, WMC, stream (Netflix, Hubu etc) easily while being in a very small package. The only downside is your HDDs and tuners will have to be USB or streamed over your network from another machine with the tuners in.

ITX is the next step up.. still a small platform but substantially larger so you can fit HDDs inside your case. They usually only have a single PCI-E slot so tuner cards would still have to be external but does mean you can stick a decent GPU in there should you ever want to run the odd game. A GTX750ti is a pretty good choice at the moment, ~£115 and the similar performance to a GTX480

After that you're into uATX which will usually give you 2-3 PCI-E slots and another 2-3 PCI slots but the cases are again larger

When my MythTV network was full configured I had a backend myth server which had 3x tuner cards and about 6x HDDs which handled the scheduling, recording and streaming of my OTA TV channels to the 2x frontend machines around my house Myth handles this all transparently in the background so after it's set up, using any of the frontend machines is the same as if it were a combined front and backend but it can be a lot more lightweight.
 
Mega Media PC
(21 items)
 
Media Server
(16 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 3820 P9X79 PRO Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI 
GraphicsRAMHard DriveOptical Drive
Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Samsung  Corsair Force 3 Samsung BD-ROM drive 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
XSPC Raystorm Full Copper block Phobia 150mm silver nickel reservior EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator 12x Noctua NF-A14 PWM fans on rads 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
EK D5 Vario X-top EK D5 Vario X-top Win 7 Pro x64 Dell U2713H 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Razer Lycosa ECGA SUperNova G2 1300W Caselabs TH10 Razer Lachesis 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
Razer eXactMat NI Komplete Audio NAD C320 Stereo Amplifier 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 920 d0 Asus rampage ii gene Asus GTX 480 Corsair xms3 ddr3 2000 c9 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
OCZ Vertex 3 Samsung 2.5" notebook drive Samsung DVD-R drive Noctua 120 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Noctua 120 Noctua 140 Noctua 140 Win7 x64 pro 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Mythbuntu 12.04.1 Panasonic 46" Plasma HDTV Apple Aluminium Keyboard  corsair hx650 
CaseMouseAudioAudio
Fractal R1 Apple Mighty Mouse Sony STR-DH800 Amp via HDMI in 5.0 speaker conf... Mordaunt Short 905 Centre, 902 front and 904 re... 
Other
Xbox wireless controller dongle 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
core 2 quad q6600 Asus P5K-E XFX 9800 GT Geil DDR2 4x1GB @ 1066 MHz  
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate Baraccuda Samsung HDD Seagate Baraccuda WD Caviar Black 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Seagate Baraccuda Samsung DVD-RW Thermalright CPU cooler Mythbuntu 12.04.1 
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Corsair 450W PSU Antec 300 WinTV Nova HD-S2 WinTV Nova-T PCI 
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Mega Media PC
(21 items)
 
Media Server
(16 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 3820 P9X79 PRO Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI 
GraphicsRAMHard DriveOptical Drive
Reference EVGA GTX 780 TI Samsung  Corsair Force 3 Samsung BD-ROM drive 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
XSPC Raystorm Full Copper block Phobia 150mm silver nickel reservior EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
EK-FC780 GTX Ti - Nickel Original CSQ Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator Alphacool 140.3 UT60 Nexxxos Radiator 12x Noctua NF-A14 PWM fans on rads 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
EK D5 Vario X-top EK D5 Vario X-top Win 7 Pro x64 Dell U2713H 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Razer Lycosa ECGA SUperNova G2 1300W Caselabs TH10 Razer Lachesis 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
Razer eXactMat NI Komplete Audio NAD C320 Stereo Amplifier 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 920 d0 Asus rampage ii gene Asus GTX 480 Corsair xms3 ddr3 2000 c9 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
OCZ Vertex 3 Samsung 2.5" notebook drive Samsung DVD-R drive Noctua 120 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Noctua 120 Noctua 140 Noctua 140 Win7 x64 pro 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Mythbuntu 12.04.1 Panasonic 46" Plasma HDTV Apple Aluminium Keyboard  corsair hx650 
CaseMouseAudioAudio
Fractal R1 Apple Mighty Mouse Sony STR-DH800 Amp via HDMI in 5.0 speaker conf... Mordaunt Short 905 Centre, 902 front and 904 re... 
Other
Xbox wireless controller dongle 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
core 2 quad q6600 Asus P5K-E XFX 9800 GT Geil DDR2 4x1GB @ 1066 MHz  
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate Baraccuda Samsung HDD Seagate Baraccuda WD Caviar Black 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Seagate Baraccuda Samsung DVD-RW Thermalright CPU cooler Mythbuntu 12.04.1 
PowerCaseOtherOther
Corsair 450W PSU Antec 300 WinTV Nova HD-S2 WinTV Nova-T PCI 
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post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
That is my other qualm with Apple TV; I already have a load of hardware I need to make use of, and Apple TV would defeat that purpose. This HTPC would be folding on the side, so it looks like Windows will be the way to go.
Up in the Air
(14 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-8350 Asus M5a99fx Pro r2.0 PowerColor 7850 2GBD5-2DHE/OC + Arctic Accelero S1 Kingston HyperX 8GB 1866MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM Asus 24x DVD-RW Zalman CNPS14X 
OSOSMonitorPower
Ubuntu 14.04 x64 Windows 8.1 x64 HP w2207 Seasonic SS-660XP2 ATX 
CaseOther
Corsair 540 Air Crucial MX100 256GB 
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Up in the Air
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-8350 Asus M5a99fx Pro r2.0 PowerColor 7850 2GBD5-2DHE/OC + Arctic Accelero S1 Kingston HyperX 8GB 1866MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM Asus 24x DVD-RW Zalman CNPS14X 
OSOSMonitorPower
Ubuntu 14.04 x64 Windows 8.1 x64 HP w2207 Seasonic SS-660XP2 ATX 
CaseOther
Corsair 540 Air Crucial MX100 256GB 
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