Windows Media Center gained exposure and popularity after being included in the Home Premium and Ultimate editions of Windows Vista. Now, Microsoft is providing WMC with the Windows 7 Business and Windows 7 Enterprise editions with several new and improved features.
And in the latest version, one can avail goodies like TV show images throughout the guide and Recorded TV; Media Center desktop gadget; trick play functions like fast forward, rewind, and skip; streamlined schedule of recordings; guide button in Window mode; use of movie library without any registry hack and support for more file types; and resumption of various video types except dvr-ms and wtv.
More features and applications that make the Windows 7 Media Center so entertaining are as follows.
With the new WMC one can avail the option of scheduling TV recordings with any browser. With the help of a TV tuner installed, Windows Media Center or Home Server makes for a decent hardcore DVR device, without the monthly fees. Make it simplified to catch good TV when one thinks of it at work with Web Guide, a cost-free scheduling program which shows you what's there in the future, streams what's available now, or else delivers your media center's TV usage to wherever you happen to be at anytime, anywhere.
There are also Windows 7 Media Center remotes available for phones. It would be better to go the easy route and buy an infrared-based, media-center-friendly physical remote for TV-attached setup, however if you'd prefer a bit more functionality—and, more importantly, real typing input—there's is a free or cheap remote for Wi-Fi powered phone or iPod. Gmote an Android phone into a multi-system remote, taking into view that you don't mind a quick software installation. iPod/iPhone owners have their choice from many XBMC-compatible remotes in the App Store, the free Boxee remote, and MediaMote correctly handles your Windows Media Center remote.
The router can also be made more media-friendly. The router treats all net traffic the same, can't tell exactly how much one has downloaded in a month, and is fairly difficult to turn into anything other than an agent of a cable modem. Install DD-WRT or Tomato on a little antenna box and it can be a wireless bridge for your entertainment center, as well make sure that Hulu and Netflix get all the bandwidth that is needed with quality of service rules.
One can also easily convert and transfer tracks to a portable player with the Windows Media Center. The finest media centers can play just about any video or audio format that is available, but even the coolest phones and media devices have a limited format range, with just as little storage space. Among the five best media converters that was surveyed upon, Super and Format Factory can match most devices and file types, but MediaCoder and HandBrake get the job done on any platform.The doubleTwist media manager is the best in getting the file on a phone or a device. It is also the easiest drag & drop solution that is around.