Originally Posted by Randy Mathis
After a Comcast install that fried my old modem, caused the introduction of their "gateway" that wouldn't play nice with my network, and two days of fighting with Comcast to activate my private modem everything seems to be working (probably just jinxed myself).
When this is working it's impressive. Nothing has been stable so far. I've had issues with the HDHRP disappearing from the network and the Xbox 360 gets lost at times.
Does anybody have tips for stabilizing the Xbox as an extender? I have it set to go to WMC on startup but it just isn't wife friendly yet. Is there anything else that I can do? I'm tempted to just build a HTPC for the living room so that she doesn't have to deal with the Xbox but that would just open another can of worms.
Edit: I need to add that I'm using the new Xbox 360 remote control. The only thing that I would like is a stop button. You can pause but you can't stop. Otherwise the remote control is well worth the $20.00
I'd say that using the xbox will be better for the WAF. Main advantage to extender will be access to all recorded media on the main computer (even copyonce) and being able to schedule recordings without having to use the main computer. Also this reduces the possibility that you will over burden the Prime with too many schduled recordings at a particular time! Another big advantage is if the main computer is watching something and the extender is also watching the same channel you are only using one tuner (there is quite a bit of lag between the two so it is best to limit hearing both at the same time). A second computer would use another tuner to watch the same channel. Lastly managing the channel line up on just one computer is easier than two as you can not copy the settings from one computer to another.
If the controller you have has a green button (WMC), pushing that should turn on the xbox and open the extender media center in one shot. I have the Pinnicle WMC controller (it has a stop button) and it does this but it does not turn on my TV or control the sound level. I am looking at the lesser priced Harmonies that include the green button feature as an all in one. From what I have read the WAF goes up with just one controller and is worth the cost but I have no direct expeience in the matter.
Using unmanaged giga switches seems to be the best method for networking between devices. (If you have a D-Link router you need to enable Multicast Streams within the advanced tab of router settings.) Ensuring that signal strength that the prime has is peak will increase stability (either a visit from your provider to adjust or add a signal booster just before the tuner). Many have reported seeing weak network signals on the xbox and have no interuption and have the report disappier within a few seconds, if this happens you might consider disabling the notice within xbox.
The upside of a second computer is, in my mind, simply having a back up system. I basically have it both ways mostly for testing purposes, three computers and an xbox. If I were setting up a complete new system for someone I would recommend multiple xbox's over mini computers and plasma TV's unless they want to access the internet and e mail from that station. I also find accessing things like netflix or xfinity TV from a computer to be a better way than using WMC or the xbox or TV apps.
All of this relies upon using WMC which is the only thing that allows seeing copyonce or copy never content so for TW customers and a few others with SDV it is a must but for others, like comcast or verizon, having a Linux run system with Myth bypasses WMC issues (if you do not watch Premium content channels).