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DVD Streaming for Media Center: Move On

July 17, 2008

Charlie Owen has written a long post essentially giving many reasons why the ability to stream DVDs is not built into Windows Media Center and probably won’t be in the future.

There was a time when I was annoyed at the lack of this functionality in Media Center, but that time has passed. Here’s why:

  • DVDs are standard definition and a dying format.
  • I can already use existing solutions to rip DVDs and stream the main movie to my Media Center Extenders at the cost of only about 20 minutes per DVD.
  • Any solution adopted by Microsoft would have to navigate the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and in so doing would probably compromise a fair amount of the functionality I would like.
  • The only thing I miss when ripping DVDs for playback with MyMovies are extra features on the disk. I certainly would like access to these, but in practice, they just aren’t that important to me. The evidence: they aren’t important enough for me to take out the physical DVD to use them even when I am going to be watching in the same room as my collection of physical DVDs.
  • I have ripped about 80 DVDs and converted the files for streaming to an extender using MyMovies and the ones that actually get watched are kids’ movies. Most of the movies my wife and I actually watch are delivered by Netflix in the mail.
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