I am looking for some ways to give my parents their own HTPC. I want to make it simple as possible as they are not the most tech savvy people and don't really have a need for internet and other "typical" computer needs.
Is there a way to have some type of HTPC or other device boot directly into the main XBMC page and then control with just a remote???
You can certainly do this with the Windows startup folder. If you want it as simple as possible, though, I strongly recommend you use OpenELEC. It's XBMC completely stripped of any operating system. It would be very hard for your parents to break, and software updates are done automatically.