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Windows Media Center Settings for Windows 7 and Windows 8:

Initially setting up windows media center as a DVR was a cake walk. That was until I started using it and found some issues.  With the Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-2250 and any other TV turner with "Clear QAM" digital TV decoding capabilities you will find that windows media center will not find all the digital channels when it performs the scan. There is a work around for this which just takes a bit of time to setup. Next finding a remote to completely control your TV experience was a challenge. I ended up using the Logitech Harmony 200 mainly because it was cheap, refurbished ones for $13, completely programmable via usb port, and they would work both on the xbox360 as well as on the Windows 7/8 media center. You may also want a windows mce remote initially to teach the Harmony 200 a few extra commands it does not know about and this will also give you the IR adapter you will need for you PC (if you don't already have one). The last thing I was finding quite disturbing was the delay caused by fast forwarding, skipping, or when commercial skip kicked in using the dtbaddin plugin. I found this issue due to (most likely) the 1000mb network card in my pc communicating with a 100mb connect in the xbox360 over the linksys/cisco 16 port gigabit switch. All of this I have now cleared up and my home media experience is amazing plus the wife likes it.

Got to have additions:

My Media Center: Ceton Corp has made an amazing product for you Android, iPhone, or iPad device which really makes your htpc dvr come to life. This software is rock solid, performs really well, and is a must have for anyone using windows media center.

ComSkip(Donator Edition): This software will process all your recorded shows and generate a text file marking the start and stop timestamps for all the commercials.

dtbaddin(Donator Edition): This software is a plugin for windows media center. It uses the timestamped file that comskip generates to perform the actual commercial automatically. I have to note this software has some bugs that need to get worked out but it is the only thing out there and it works for the most part. Be sure to have .net 3.5.x which includes 2.0 installed see here for Windows 8 Users

Remotes:

Windows 7 Vista XP Media Center MCE PC Remote Control and Infrared Receiver for Home, Premium and Ultimate Edition

Logitech 915-000148 Harmony 200 Remote for Three Devices

Clear QAM Channels:

SiliconDust Channel Lineup: This uses your zipcode and will give you a pretty extensive list of the available channels. You still may have to do some google searching and forum reading to find the rest. For instance SiliconDust was not showing PBS as an available channel for me.

Network Issues:

Completely turn off network throttling:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Multimedia\SystemProfile\
Name : NetworkThrottlingIndex
Value type : DWORD
Value data [Range]: 01-46,FFFFFFFF (hexadecimal)
Value data [Default]: 0A (hexadecimal)
value data [New]: FFFFFFFF (hexadecimal)

Setup RX/TX Flow Control on your network adapter:

Go to: Control Panel->System and Security->Device Manager->Network Adapters
On Network Adapter right click: Properties->Advance Tab
Select: "Flow Control"
Set Value: "Rx&Tx Enabled"

 
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