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WHS2011 TV tuner support RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • Windows Home Server 2011 should support tuner cards that currently work with Windows Media Center (this is a feature suggestion, not a statement of fact).   Windows Home Server claims to be a Media Server, and suggests that it be used to "Store and organize...media in one central location".  Without tv tuner support, a separate Windows Media "Center" will be required to capture and save an extremely popular form of media: television.  In this scenario what you really have is media in 2 disparate locations, which is actually the opposite of one central location.
    Wednesday, August 24, 2011 2:25 PM

All replies

  • I suggest you make that suggestion on Microsoft Connect rather than here - this forum is for peer to peer support
    Phil P.S. If you find my comment helpful or if it answers your question, please mark it as such.
    Wednesday, August 24, 2011 2:40 PM
  • As Phil has said, product suggestions belong on Connect.

    However, the ability to tune (which is what a tuner card delivers) implies the local ability to watch and create media, which implies the whole Media Center experience. As a media "server" Windows Home Server delivers media to other devices for consumption. It doesn't, however, serve as a primary media creation platform in it's own right. To be honest, Windows 7 Media Center will deliver what you want with fewer issues and better UX than Windows Home Server ever could.

    All that said, if you search you may find a tuner card with drivers and software which will install on/run on Windows Server 2008 R2. If you do, you should be able to use that card with Windows Home Server. Don't expect it to integrate with the dashboard (unless the vendor supplies an add-in which does that) and don't expect the UX to be as smooth and "pretty" as the Windows 7 Media Center interface.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Wednesday, August 24, 2011 3:18 PM
  • Hi Christopher,

    I have had several TV tuners installed in both the Vail beta and WHS2011. I found that the Windows 7 64-bit drivers for these tuners install and work nicely on WHS2011. As Ken will say, there is a big difference between "works" and "supported". It means that you cannot call the tuner card vendor or Microsoft and ask them to help you to fix it if you have a problem. It is as they say "roll your own".

    The next issue you will run into is that WHS2011 does not have the Windows Media Center pieces installed to use the tuners. This is truly unfortunate, and a great oversight by Microsoft IMHO. I was able to get past this by installing a piece of software called NextPVR (nextpvr.com). It is free PVR software that seems to work well on WHS2011. It produces .TS (Mpeg2 Transport Stream) files that play well on most media players.

    Good luck!

    -TB

    Wednesday, August 24, 2011 4:04 PM
  • TV4Home ( mediaportal ) has a 2011 add-in, mediaportal is as good as WMC. http://usingwindowshomeserver.com/2011/02/14/tv4home-add-in-for-windows-home-server-2011-and-whs-v1/
    Ben Ogilvie www.hdtvtoyz.com
    Wednesday, August 24, 2011 6:45 PM
  • Hi

    I have two cards installed in WHS 2011.  I'm in the UK, and have a Dual Freesat and Dual Freeview tuner card installed.  I used the Windows 7 64-bit drivers, and it's gone pretty well.

    On the server I have installed a piece of software called DVB Link (the network pack).  It pools up all channels from all tuners you have installed and offers them to UPnP devices and Windows Media Center clients.  Took a while to set up, but it gave me the opportunity to stream any channels from WHS 2011 to all Windows Media Center clients (4 in my case).  They show up as 4 DVB Link tuners in WMC.

    Only thing is, you have to RDC directly onto the server to setup - you can't install to the dashboard.

    Not free, but certainly very good and worth looking into.

    Tuesday, August 30, 2011 10:32 AM
  • Hi

    You mention the DVB Link software. I'm interested in doing a similar setup. What is the exact product you bought from DVBLogic - was it DVBLink Connect!Server?

    Monday, March 19, 2012 2:42 PM
  • Hi

    You mention the DVB Link software. I'm interested in doing a similar setup. What is the exact product you bought from DVBLogic - was it DVBLink Connect!Server?

    Hi

    When I purchased it, the Connect! Server wasn't available (I think it was the Network Pack).  However, the current equivalent is indeed the Connect! Server package.

    You need the TV Source package installed on the server to handle all the tuners and pooling, and the Connect! Server to give access to it across your network.

    It does take a bit of setting up, and it will need tinkering with every now and then as channels are added/changed/removed, but once you've got it running it's good.  The latest version has a web interface for its setup which is currently a bit slow and clunky (in my opinion), but once you've got over that initial hurdle you'll be fine.

    For example, I'm currently streaming to 3 Windows Media Center boxes, a laptop via Windows Media Player, my Android mobile (either at home or externally - with varying results), and over a web browser when I'm away.  I can also schedule recordings remotely, Media Center will automatically move them to the Home Server, and I am then able to watch them over the Home Server web service remotely.

    It's not at the "it just works" stage just yet, but it's certainly pretty useful.  I'm the same username over on the DVBLogic forums, although there are people there with much more knowledge than me!

    Monday, March 19, 2012 3:06 PM