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The Custom Integrator Show Installment 006 is live. In this installment, we wrap up our initial pass at the requirements and options for the Windows Media Center (WMC) PC itself. We discuss some of the different approaches to content storage and some of the design implications of using a WMC Host PC, a WMC PC client, Windows Home Server, or a NAS box for a centralized library – or a combination of all of the above. We also get into using a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows on the WMC PC Host a bit and looking at some of the RAM requirements for supporting multiple Extenders for Windows Media Center.

Suffice it to say, one never can have enough storage space, especially when dealing with high definition TV recordings and videos. It always is based upon the expected lifestyle requirements of the client, but planning ahead for things they may not know they will want to do like ripping DVDs and Blu-ray Discs is important in how you allow for expansion and redundancy in the future. It also has implications when accessing the content from devices like Extenders for Windows Media Center and dealing with protected recordings from a CableCARD-based ecosystem. Of course, this opens up the whole concept of backing the content up and storing those backups off-site somewhere – or even in “The Cloud.” Windows Home Server helps with solving this, but this also means taking the additional disk space requirements into account when selecting the hardware used for the server. This is a topic we will dig into more in the future, but it is important to take the responsibility for delivering data and content protection to your clients now as part of your implementations.


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