Does Microsoft ever bother reading these?!

Discussion in 'Windows Media Center' started by Vincentb, Jul 26, 2006.

  1. Vincentb

    Vincentb Guest

    I've asked a bunch of questions in posting the past, specifically for
    Microsoft to reply to, and not one of them were ever answered. Windows
    Media Center seems to be severely lacking in development, despite it becoming
    the most well known home-media solution :p

    Please enlighten me if any of these have recently been addressed...

    SOFTWARE BUG:
    * The tv channels has a bug where the ordering gets lost. I've spent hours
    ordering my channels neatly (and had to do this on a number of occasions),
    only to find that eventually they return to their original state - all over
    the place. So then all my scheduled recordings stuff up

    LACK OF FEATURE:
    What's with the restriction of only 2 3rd party apps in the start menu? The
    start menu is already designed to vertically scroll and return to the top
    item when scrolled to the bottom. Many developers have released plugin apps
    yet MS still only offer 2 start-menu entries. Having to go to the 'more
    programs' option is pointless.

    SOFTWARE BUG:
    With 2 different tv cards tested, I've found that MCE will eventually hang
    after a few days.. guaranteed. Yet when i test the cards with the software
    that comes with them - no problem (My dual-tuner DVICO for example).
    House-occupants are sick of MCE because of this hanging, so I've had to
    develop a software tool that terminates the MCE process & reloads it;
    activated by a remote-control button.

    LACK OF FEATURE:
    Picture in Picture (PIP) is not supported, even with Dual TV cards.. come
    on, DVico are now able to support PIP with a single tuner card!!!

    SOFTWARE BUG:
    I programmed in some recurring scheduled recordings, deleted them, and some
    of them continue to persist - even though i go to the settings and tell MCE
    to delete all recurring schedules for a particular recording. (Note: doesn't
    happen with all recurring-schedules).

    LACK OF FEATURE:
    Is any further development on international tv-guides ever going to be
    continued?

    I'm disappointed with the proggresion of MCE. I was in love with it at 1st
    when i saw the new opportunities it provided, ubtil i got used to the system
    and then realised the crucial bugs that render it a headache, not to mention
    missing features that one would expect to see in the system.
     
    Vincentb, Jul 26, 2006
    #1
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  2. This newsgroup is supported by peer-peer volunteers. While MS personnel do frequent the groups, they do so on their own time, as volunteers. The rest are answered inline.

    --
    Doug Knox, MS-MVP Windows Media Center\Windows Powered Smart Display\Security
    Win 95/98/Me/XP Tweaks and Fixes
    http://www.dougknox.com
    --------------------------------
    Per user Group Policy Restrictions for XP Home and XP Pro
    http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_securityconsole.htm
    --------------------------------
    Please reply only to the newsgroup so all may benefit.
    Unsolicited e-mail is not answered.

    Never seen it. Set my Guide up the way I want it and it stays that way. Haven't had an issue in several years.
    MS does not want to corrupt the main menu sequence. Period. In order for an application to receive "certification" for Media Center, they cannot insert themselves as a top level menu item.
    Never seen this. Check your ventilation and cooling.
    Well known request. Not gonna happen for now, anyway.
    Good one, and I don't see it often, but do see it on occassion.
    This is a two stage process. As Media Center expands to more countries, Microsoft has to locate and contract with other companies to:

    1) Correlate all the relevant data for each country
    2) Provide a SQL Server or MySQL database server farm capable of serving up the data
    3) Actually maintain the data and the supporting hardware at a cost effective level for MS and a profitable level for the 3rd party provider.

    This is no trivial undertaking, at least here in the US with so many cable and satellite offerings, as well as just your local OTA programming.
     
    Doug Knox MS-MVP, Jul 26, 2006
    #2
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  3. Vincentb

    Vincentb Guest

    Hi Doug, thanks for replying. Here's some responses.
    hmm.. does your MCE ever hang? Maybe it's only related to when MCE's
    process needs to be terminated (though i couldn't imagine why.. something is
    returning the order to the default... I'd love to know where the data is
    stored so i can export it to back it up). I've searched google-groups and
    seen other people complain of this problem also.. but no one has a solution.

    That doesn't seem to be correct - many 3rd party apps install their own menu
    option at the top-level - and they do this with no certification, despite
    being advertised on the downloads section of MCE (I know it's an external
    site, but MS provide a link to it as 'MCE Downloads') .. all that's required
    to get a top-level entry working is a few lines in the registry. But
    apparently, only the 1st two entries are read by MCE (I've tested it to
    confirm).
    Ventilation and cooling is suffice - all temperature readings are always
    nominal. As i said, it NEVER hangs with the software that comes with the tv
    cards.. only with MCE... and it takes days to eventually happen.

    Yes I know, but if they're going to advertise features such as remote-record
    internationally - when that requires a tv guide - then the developers should
    offer alternative solutions.. such as a 3rd-party means of populating the
    tv-guide data with the ability for that country to maintain it's own
    community that maintains the data. Television stations offer RSS feeds and
    it wouldn't be much to redirect that into a SQL db by a company, and then
    charge people for a tool that accesses the db. I'm not suggesting that as a
    feasable solution - just saying that the fact that MS promote the
    remote-record feature in MCE but restrict it's functionality to only work
    locally is crude.

    --
    Regards,
    Vince B


     
    Vincentb, Jul 26, 2006
    #3
  4. I've got 3 MCE PC's from Gateway 901x to Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe based. Running MCE 2005, they perform flawlessly. Of course, I tend to use them specifically as MCE machines, so there is very little, if any, 3rd party software running on them. With any OS from Win 3.1 on, I have found the vast majority of problems are caused by 3rd party software. Yes, I know that MS doesn't fill every niche, or that there are acceptable alternatives to the Microsoft offerings. Hell, MS's own software can cause problems. As for MCE, I've run 3 machines, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week as nothing but MCE PC's, and I have had virtually no problems. This includes all patches for the core OS, as well as all of the MCE Rollups (and the problems that they have introduced).

    As for menu placement for 3rd party apps, I was referring to the requirement that they not insert themselves as top level menu items for inclusion on the Windows MarketPlace. How thoroughly MS enforces that, I can't say.

    Remote Record is not international, at this time. It is being looked into. And while it does work with MCE, its actually an MSN service. Yes, they're both owned by MS, but completely different departments, and you'd be suprised how often different departments really don't communicate :).

    --
    Doug Knox, MS-MVP Windows Media Center\Windows Powered Smart Display\Security
    Win 95/98/Me/XP Tweaks and Fixes
    http://www.dougknox.com
    --------------------------------
    Per user Group Policy Restrictions for XP Home and XP Pro
    http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_securityconsole.htm
    --------------------------------
    Please reply only to the newsgroup so all may benefit.
    Unsolicited e-mail is not answered.

     
    Doug Knox MS-MVP, Jul 26, 2006
    #4
  5. Vincentb

    dickm Guest

    Isnt this what the Optimization function is supposed to do, automatically
    schedule a daily restart of the MCE processes?

    dickm
     
    dickm, Jul 26, 2006
    #5
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