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DesktopWeb FormText   some more MCE painTue, 17 May 2005 23:02:10 GMT # 

spent most of last night playing with Media Center Edition (MCE). its only partially working because i installed it on a notebook that was not intended to run it (missing FM and TV tuners). so its behaving a little abnormal. the 1st problem was that when it starts up it displayed a dialog saying "your video card or drivers are not compatible with media center". this warning can be avoided by adding some registry keys. the 2nd problem occured when i tried to play videos or a DVD. the message i got was "files needed to display video are not installed or not working correctly. please restart media center and/or restart the computer". my 1st attempt to get past this was to install an MPEG2 decoder. specifically, i tried the nVidia implementation. this lets me play DVDs using WindowsMediaPlayer (outside of MCE), but i still get the error within MCE. videos dont play well either. for DivX videos i've been getting black screens and only the audio plays. else the screen flashes at me that the video is 'Finished'. pretty ugly. neither of these problems make much sense to me since i can play both DVDs and these videos on the same notebook when MCE is not running. so what magic is MCE trying to do ... that is breaking me? maybe i should try another DVD decoder? also thought it might be because my video card (nVidia GeForce FX Go5200) only has 32 megs of RAM, and MCE wants more than 32. tried the ehshell.exe hack (linked above) but got an error regarding public private key pairs. did that real quick right before bed, so i might have to try that again. anyway, i really want to get video working, because then i can buy a USB/PCMCIA card that has both a TV and FM tuner for the notebook. finally, the start menu has an item for Media Center - nVidia settings. i can view the initial page, but the page with actual settings is nowhere to be found? the error is "Media Center was unable to load the page ...displaySettingsADV.html The program or web site cannot be found. Ensure that the program is on the computer, or that you have a working Internet connection". no clue how to fix that. and the final problem is when i went into work and found out you cant put MCE 2005 onto a domain. the reasoning i've seen is that restriction is due to Media Center Extenders requiring Fast User Switching, which you dont get on a domain. see that as another pain point for developers. regardless, it is still functional 'enough' for me to start doing some development this weekend.