UPDATE: Replacing My Wife’s DVR with an HTPC

23 05 2012

My replacement DVR is still not working fully to my satisfaction.  95% of the time it works flawlessly but then every once in a while I get errors like “tuner not found” or “no tuner available” or this morning Media Center came up and said “CableCard device found, would you like to install it?”.  A reboot generally fixes these issues.

I’m running a program on the PC called MCE Standby Tool, this program looks at the recording schedule and wakes the PC up to record shows and then puts it back to sleep when nothing is happening.  If a user starts using the machine, i.e. watching a program or using the remote it delays for a set period of time before putting the machine to sleep.

If I could work out these issues I’d be able to complete the conversion and get rid of the cable company DVR.
After moving several computers around throughout the house to find the perfect setup here is what I am currently running:

  • HTPC in family room (this is my main recording PC)
  • processor is Athlon II X2 260
  • memory is 4GB DDR2
  • hard drive is 1TB
  • Tuner is Hauppauge 2650 CableCard Dual Tuner
  • HTPC in front room (this one is on dual band wireless and is used only to view videos)
  • Foxconn Small Form Factor Computer with
  • processor AMD E-350 APU
  • memory is 4GB DDR3
  • hard drive is 10k RPM 74GB Western Digital
  • HTPC in bed room (this one is mostly for watching videos but can also record)
  • processor is Intel G530 (incredible processor for the money)
  • memory is 4GB DDR2
  • hard drive is 10K RPM 74GB Western Digital
  • Tuner is SiliconDust HDHomeRun dual tuner
  • Home Server
  • Windows Home Server 1.0
  • processor is older AMD X64 single core processor
  • memory is 2GB DDR
  • hard drives are 2 X 1TB and 1 X 1.5TB and 1 X 500GB

My next task is going to be upgrading my Windows Home Server to a new processor platform to cut down on it’s energy usage.  I’ve just ordered an Intel G630T processor and an H61 mobo for this project.  Updates when I get them installed.

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