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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have a ton of DVD's. I just want a very very simple system to do the following:


1. Copy DVD to Hard Drive on main computer.

2. Have a simple HTPC hooked upto 2 different TV's, SD only for now

3. Be able to play VBO directly off of the server


I've used WinDVD before and it would play a DVD Folder just fine but in experimenting I hooked up my laptop via wireless and tried it out. It would only play the VOB file directly, not "mount" the DVD Folder even though I picked that option.


We have alot of DVD's and alot of HD storage space. I'd like a simple menuing program that would let me pick them and play them. I've looked at Media Center and a few others with no luck.


I'll eventually want to get it to scale to 1080i into my HD but I'll take the small step first.


This sounds so simple, but yet seems very difficult to get what I want.


What is a decent video out card? I just used the S-Video out on my Dell D600 with the Radeon and it didn't look all that bad but it was tough to tell since I was doing it over Wireless B and it stuttered quite a bit. I'm wondering if Wireless G would work or should I string cable?


Above all it has to be simple and menu driven. I'll do the behind the scenes work, but I'd like a list of movies to pop up, pick one, and off we go.


Simple 2.1 stereo is fine for now also. I'm going to expand on this but from what I hear some real nice client/server style stuff is coming but I'd like to put something simple together now.


Thanks
 

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What program were you using to rip the DVDs to your hard drive?


Also, for WinDVD, have you tried playing the IFO file that sits in that dir? It should know how to string all the VOBs together.


myHTPC [free version of meedio] is a good enough menuing & control program for me.


Finally, 802.11b wireless isn't fast enough for DVD - you'll need at least a G network. You can't have any B cards attaching to it either, or else the whole network drops to G. I'd buy a G Router, and leave your B AP in place to handle the B clients if there's ones you don't need to upgrade to G.
 

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I'm toying with doing a similar setup. Initially my thoughts are to copy my dvd's to ISO's and use something like alcohol 120%'s virtual cdrom to load the iso up when I want to play them. Just have to create a cheesy menu of some sort. On the microsoft site if you look really hard you can get a free iso loader, if you don't have alcohol120.


What I really like to find is something with a HDTV dvd'ish capability. Something I can make a menu and chapter selects like a dvd has except using high definition transport streams....granted it would be tied exclusivly to the pc, but thats what I'd like to have..
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
PowerDVD did the trick as far as playing from a folder.


I also tried Meedio, but it won't do anything without it being mounted as an ISO which is not doable due to the volume of DVD's plus the PITA to mount each one before you can use it.


I tried to associate the IFO files with PowerDVD and still launch them through Meedio but no luck.


I'd still like to get this to work. I upgraded my router today to G and popped a G card into my laptop, played perfect with no stuttering problems.


I've also looked into a Roku box, that was my first idea since it would do HD and SD but I read nothing but trouble about the unit trying to play VOB's according to Roku's forums.


The concept behind Media Center 2005 is right, but the hardware is not yet available.


I also priced out some Mini ITX cases and boards, now I just need to source a decent video card for it. I plan on ordering the parts for the PC this week.
 

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To get WinDVD to play movies ripped to a hard drive you need to have all the files in folder named VIDEO_TS - the file that's in that folder that you need to 'play' is the video_ts.ifo . I've never been able to get PDVD to do something like this without going through the PDVD gui or resorting to ISO tricks.
 
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