Saturday 29 September 2012

Remote Tribulations

Following on from the reconfiguration of MediaServer8, I needed to build an HTPC to drive my home theatre.

The theatre comprises a Pioneer VSX-2011 receiver driving a 7.1 speaker array consisting of 2x B&W CDM-1NTs, a CDM-CNT, 2x B&W DS6 diploes as surrounds and a pair of B&W DM601 S3s as rear surrounds. Sub is a Velodyne CHT12. Sources are a Pioneer DV565A CD/DVD/SACD/DVD-A player and a SqueezeBox. A Sony VPH-1271QM CRT throws a picture onto a 110" screen.

All of this looks and sounds great despite being particulalry old school (not an HDMI socket in sight!!). The only thing missing is a way to playback video material from the Plex Media Server running on MediaServer8. I had previously connected the server directly to the projector but that was problematic in the the same computer was driving the living room TV and we couldn't use both simultaneously.

Time for a new HTPC build!

MediaServer8 v2

So it's been a little while since I've had a chance to update here on progress due to work & family commitments. And there has been progress.

Last time, I was contemplating Windows8 as a media server instead of what has now become Server 2012. The rationale was mostly around cost and better software/driver support in the desktop OS.

The first problem I had was that all my data was stored on Storage Spaces in Server 8 beta. Some changes were made to Storage Spaces rendering RC and RTM versions incompatible with beta versions. So, I had to copy all my media data across to my trusty unRAID setup, install Windows 8 RTM, set up storage spaces and copy it all back again.