Windows Media Center
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Related to Windows Media Center: Windows Media Player
Windows Media CenterAn optional interface in Windows that serves as a digital media server or home theater PC (HTPC) control panel. Debuting as Media Center Edition (MCE) in Windows XP, Windows Media Center is available in subsequent Windows versions, except for Windows RT. Designed to organize and store a music, video and photo collection, content can be viewed and heard on the PC or sent over the network to a stereo or TV.
Local or Remote
With Windows Media Center (WMC), content can be played and viewed on the PC or streamed over the local network to an Xbox or Media Center Extender (digital media hub) connected to the home theater. Windows Media Center's "10-foot user interface" was designed for living room control on a TV screen. In practice, millions of PCs with Windows Media Center are used like ordinary PCs, and the Media Center interface is never selected.
Windows Media Center HTPC
Built into a horizontal case like traditional A/V equipment, a Windows Media Center HTPC is designed for the home theater cabinet. It includes "quiet" fans, wireless keyboard, Blu-ray player and large hard disk. Plugging into the A/V receiver, this digital media server not only renders movies on the TV, but everything else a regular PC can display, including websites, e-mail, games and business applications. See HTPC, 10-foot user interface, Media Center Extender, digital media server and digital media hub.
|A Media Center PC|
|Designed for A/V cabinets, CybertronPC makes a variety of Media Center PCs. This model has 2 terabytes of disk storage and an HDTV tuner card. While the Media Center interface on the TV screen is used to access content, the unit's built-in 7" touchscreen adds more controls. (Image courtesy of Cybertron International, Inc., www.cybertronpc.com)|