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  #1  
Old 11-12-2008, 04:07 PM
Brent Brent is offline
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Which comes first SageTV 7 or Windows 7

I was just pondering the naming of Windows 7 (and Windows 7 Media Center) and began thinking about the impact this might have on SageTV.

First off, I can't believe MS is ripping off SageTV's awesome naming scheme (SageTV 6.x, SageTV 7.x) with their new "Windows 7" version (I kid ). Secondly, I'm guessing we'll see SageTV 7 before Windows 7 is released - do you agree on the timing of this?

Cablecard really was a much weaker feature for VMC than most had thought originally. I wonder if we'll see a stronger feature for Windows 7 in the rumored DirecTV tuner?

Anything else out there that sounds like a big threat to SageTV with Windows 7? What does everyone here think?
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  #2  
Old 11-12-2008, 04:22 PM
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HelenWeathers HelenWeathers is offline
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I've been waiting since 2005 for some form of DirecTV PC tuner. The concept was mentioned in 2004 at a Microsoft introduction to MCE 2005 seminar I attended in Florida. I waited. I waited. And I waited some more. Then came all of the DRM flags which Microsoft and DirecTV decided to put in place for PPV, VOD and some premium services. Then came Vista, with no real HiDef support. Then came the HD PVR and SageTV. There went Helen.

I am no longer interested in Windows. I want to watch what I want, when I want, not according to someone else's schedule. I just want to enjoy my HTPC.

As long as SageTV satisfies my wants, I am here to stay.
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  #3  
Old 11-12-2008, 07:15 PM
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sainswor99 sainswor99 is offline
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I think that IF Microsoft decides that it wants to own the HTPC marketplace, it will. As a company, I don't think that media integration is the top tier on thier plate right now (but will probably become so in the next few years).

What Microsoft has (that Sage doesn't) is lots of cash, and consequently, lots of pull with the media providers. I think that they're just waiting for the transition to digital media to mature (e.g, the cable transition to digital TV to settle, the appearance of more cost-effective capture hardware, and the evolution of standards like True2Way). They're probably also waiting for the right small software company to make the right innovations that they can acquire; who knows, if Sage had been a .NET app, they probably would have been purchased by now

Don't get me wrong; I think there's always going to be a niche market for Sage and Sage users (people who love the ability to expand their systems in new and exciting ways), but I do think that once Microsoft stops dipping their toe in the water and actually dives in, the whole HTPC industry is going to change. We'll probably see a surge of people buying pre-built HTPC systems, but I don't think they're going to necessarily woo any current Sage users away.

Stu
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  #4  
Old 11-12-2008, 08:34 PM
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stanger89 stanger89 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sainswor99 View Post
What Microsoft has (that Sage doesn't) is lots of cash, and consequently, lots of pull with the media providers.
I don't think they have as much pull as their given credit for. Just look at cablecard. If they had any sort of pull, you'd think they'd have been able to find a solution letting people install their own OCUR devices. The DTV device probably would have been here in 2005.

Reality is somewhat different, we've seen DTV give MS the finger, as well as the Cable companies. What we've seen is MS has the money and resources to push product through without the support of the industry. OCUR became a reality in spite of CableLabs, not because of their help.

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I think that they're just waiting for the transition to digital media to mature (e.g, the cable transition to digital TV to settle, the appearance of more cost-effective capture hardware, and the evolution of standards like True2Way). They're probably also waiting for the right small software company to make the right innovations that they can acquire; who knows, if Sage had been a .NET app, they probably would have been purchased by now

Don't get me wrong; I think there's always going to be a niche market for Sage and Sage users (people who love the ability to expand their systems in new and exciting ways), but I do think that once Microsoft stops dipping their toe in the water and actually dives in, the whole HTPC industry is going to change. We'll probably see a surge of people buying pre-built HTPC systems, but I don't think they're going to necessarily woo any current Sage users away.
That's the thing, I think the "HTPC industry" is, and always will be a niche market. Frankly I don't think there's much more MS could do, they've already got MCE functionality in millions of PCs, but nobody cares about anything but the photo viewer.

The reality is people don't want to use their PCs to watch TV, I mean heck, we can see it right here on these forums, just look at the exodus to the extenders. Even we, the enthusiasts don't really want to use PCs to watch TV, PCs are just a means to an end.
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  #5  
Old 11-12-2008, 09:42 PM
hockeyfan hockeyfan is offline
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That's true, they did provide MCE in Vista. Then turned around and alienated the entire user base with their 'Fiji' upgrade.

I think that people will get burned so many times (how many xbox's did you buy for extenders?) before they say they've had enough.

If MS did make a push maybe it could make waves, but they would leave everyone stranded on the next upgrade cycle.

Ok, I'm a bitter previous Windows Vista MCE user, but I'm glad I cut over to Sage.
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  #6  
Old 11-13-2008, 05:21 AM
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sainswor99 sainswor99 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
I don't think they have as much pull as their given credit for. Just look at cablecard. If they had any sort of pull, you'd think they'd have been able to find a solution letting people install their own OCUR devices. The DTV device probably would have been here in 2005.

Reality is somewhat different, we've seen DTV give MS the finger, as well as the Cable companies. What we've seen is MS has the money and resources to push product through without the support of the industry. OCUR became a reality in spite of CableLabs, not because of their help.
Eh, maybe. The truth is that Windows users are NOT MS's primary customers; the PC manufacturers are. When Microsoft tries to market hardware & software to the end users, they assume that the end users want locked-down, simple devices (translation: they think we're too stupid to mess with those fancy PC thingers); I just don't think they've put enough muscle and R&D into building their own media appliances yet (which would not necessarily be a true HTPC). I think Vista & the upcoming Windows 7 have bee ntheir primary focus, and now that 7 is almost here, they'll divert thier attention to other projects for a few years (probably gaining a bigger Internet foothold).

Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
The reality is people don't want to use their PCs to watch TV, I mean heck, we can see it right here on these forums, just look at the exodus to the extenders. Even we, the enthusiasts don't really want to use PCs to watch TV, PCs are just a means to an end.
People don't want to use a loud, clunky, expensive, full-featured PC to watch TV, but they do want some PC-like features (like expandable storage, networkable interoperability, and Internet functions) on their TV's. If you limit your definition of the PC to the current hardware, then I'd agree with you, but given Microsoft's limited forays into alternate hardware (like using the Xbox as an extender, UMPC's, Surface, and Sync), I don't think that's necessarily their vision. Love it or hate it; Microsoft wants Windows everywhere. I just don't think that the hardware players from the media providers have yet succumbed to their will (but they will).

I also think that Bill Gates (for all of his faults) is a true visionary when it comes to putting puzzle pieces together; now that he's retired (for what, the third time?), I'm not sure that Microsoft will continue to be a driving force in the same way it has been.

Last edited by sainswor99; 11-13-2008 at 05:29 AM. Reason: thought of more stuff
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  #7  
Old 11-13-2008, 02:01 PM
wayner wayner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
The reality is people don't want to use their PCs to watch TV, I mean heck, we can see it right here on these forums, just look at the exodus to the extenders. Even we, the enthusiasts don't really want to use PCs to watch TV, PCs are just a means to an end.
I really want to use the PC to watch TV - I have been doing so for two years with XP MCE. But I have been using Sage for 3 months on an office PC and playback of H.264 files seems to be so problematic with lots of stuttering. I didn't think I saw stuttering until hockey and basketball season started - now the stuttering is bugging me. Is it easier to spend months screwing around changing all kinds of settings or should I just buy an extender? I am now leaning towards moving Sage to a hidden away WHS box as well since it gets messy having multiple cable boxes connected to the HTPC, in addition to all of the other AV junk.

To answer Brent's original question I think Sage 7 does.

And MS's rationale for the Windows 7 name is pretty weak. Why didn't they call it Vista Windows 6? At least Sage has stuck to the version numbering.

p.s. Assuming Win95 was Windows 4 that means XP was Windows 5 and Vista was Windows 6. Does that mean Win98 and WinME didn't count?
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  #8  
Old 11-13-2008, 02:27 PM
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gplasky gplasky is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wayner View Post
Is it easier to spend months screwing around changing all kinds of settings or should I just buy an extender? I am now leaning towards moving Sage to a hidden away WHS box as well since it gets messy having multiple cable boxes connected to the HTPC, in addition to all of the other AV junk.
Buy an extender. You won't regret it. I have the WHS server in the basement and the HD-100 Extender in the living room. I still have PC clients and I do testing/developement work on one of them. So you can still tweak away if you so desire. But getting an extender is a no brainer. Inexpensive, picture perfect video both SD and HD. Plays everything I have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wayner View Post
p.s. Assuming Win95 was Windows 4 that means XP was Windows 5 and Vista was Windows 6. Does that mean Win98 and WinME didn't count?
Win98 was Windows 4.5 and no, WinME didn't count.

Gerry
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  #9  
Old 11-13-2008, 02:38 PM
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Razillian Razillian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wayner View Post
p.s. Assuming Win95 was Windows 4 that means XP was Windows 5 and Vista was Windows 6. Does that mean Win98 and WinME didn't count?
They are using Windows NT version numbering. 3.1->3.51->4.0->XP->Vista->7
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  #10  
Old 11-13-2008, 02:43 PM
Taddeusz Taddeusz is offline
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Originally Posted by wayner View Post
p.s. Assuming Win95 was Windows 4 that means XP was Windows 5 and Vista was Windows 6. Does that mean Win98 and WinME didn't count?
Windows 7 is a direct derivative of Windows NT. The consumer flavors based on Windows 95 don't count. The first NT was 3.1 (because they wanted to be in parity with Windows 3.1), then NT 4. Windows 2000 was version 5.0, Windows XP 5.1 and 5.2 and then Vista is 6.0.

Edit: According to Wikipedia it appears that Windows 7 is slated to be 6.1. So, yea the versioning is all mucked up. It was from the beginning anyway since they started with 3.1
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Last edited by Taddeusz; 11-13-2008 at 02:51 PM.
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  #11  
Old 11-13-2008, 02:56 PM
babgvant babgvant is offline
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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post

The reality is people don't want to use their PCs to watch TV, I mean heck, we can see it right here on these forums, just look at the exodus to the extenders. Even we, the enthusiasts don't really want to use PCs to watch TV, PCs are just a means to an end.
There are plenty of people who do want the flexibility and control that only a PC can provide to watch TV (and other things). While there are some who don't want that flexibility, it's not true that all "enthusiasts" think one way.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sainswor99 View Post


People don't want to use a loud, clunky, expensive, full-featured PC to watch TV, but they do want some PC-like features (like expandable storage, networkable interoperability, and Internet functions) on their TV's.
If your HTPC is "loud, clunky, or expensive" you're doing it wrong.
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  #12  
Old 11-13-2008, 03:44 PM
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stanger89 stanger89 is offline
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Originally Posted by babgvant View Post
There are plenty of people who do want the flexibility and control that only a PC can provide to watch TV (and other things). While there are some who don't want that flexibility, it's not true that all "enthusiasts" think one way.
That's somewhat different than saying that they actually want to use a PC. That's the thing though. Ask 100 people off the street if they'd like to have all their favorite shows recorded for them, commercials detected and automatically skipped, and be able to watch them from any TV in the house without worrying about what was recorded where, and I'd get very near 100 of them would say that sounds like a great idea.

But ask that same group if they want to use a PC to do all that and probably more than 50 of them would say they'd rather use the trouble-free DVR from their provider.

That's the biggest reason I still can't fathom why MS didn't put MCE's recording functionality in WHS, it seemed like a no brainer. Box in the closet/office connected to the network that manages TV and other media, and then plug in simple CE devices near the TVs and access it. This sort of setup I can really see taking off (at least, if VOD doesn't explode).
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Old 11-13-2008, 04:02 PM
babgvant babgvant is offline
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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
That's somewhat different than saying that they actually want to use a PC. That's the thing though. Ask 100 people off the street if they'd like to have all their favorite shows recorded for them, commercials detected and automatically skipped, and be able to watch them from any TV in the house without worrying about what was recorded where, and I'd get very near 100 of them would say that sounds like a great idea.

But ask that same group if they want to use a PC to do all that and probably more than 50 of them would say they'd rather use the trouble-free DVR from their provider.
True, it's not the same thing.

I want the all the flexibility that a PC provides, right now the only thing that gives me that is a PC. I control the hw, the sw, the release schedule, if I don't like my current solution I don't need to buy new hw, etc. I'm flexible, it doesn't have to be a PC, if some other device give me that same experience I'd be cool with that too
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Old 11-13-2008, 04:43 PM
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PGPfan PGPfan is offline
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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
That's the biggest reason I still can't fathom why MS didn't put MCE's recording functionality in WHS, it seemed like a no brainer. Box in the closet/office connected to the network that manages TV and other media, and then plug in simple CE devices near the TVs and access it. This sort of setup I can really see taking off (at least, if VOD doesn't explode).
Stanger, the reason MS didn't bother putting it into WHS is simply that WHS developement was approached from a 'server' viewpoint. In the consumer space (which is where they mistankenly think MCE should stay) they dumped it for nearly everyones consumption.

In the server mindset, backup is the goal - the easier for Joe-sixpack the better - and where they spent the most time. They hoped that most everything else could be impemented via add-on.

-PGPfan
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  #15  
Old 11-13-2008, 04:48 PM
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sainswor99 sainswor99 is offline
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Originally Posted by babgvant View Post
If your HTPC is "loud, clunky, or expensive" you're doing it wrong.
I think if we were to do a comparison of available HTPC hardware versus extenders, there would definitely be a relationship between noise, footprint, and cost (the extenders would be quieter, smaller, and cheaper); don't see how that merits a pithy Internet meme.

FAIL. (couldn't resist).
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