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Building a PVR/HTPC with windows 98se


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Hey guys. I am getting so tired of my cable company charging me every month for my dvr and the service that goes with it. Although it works very well, I need to cut some bills. My wife is the only one that uses or wants the dvr. SO today I thought to myself, why not build my own dvr/htpc ? I would have used windows 2000 as the os, but my disc is scratched beyond use. So I am currently installing win98. And I am using Soporific's Win98 Autopatcher which has made windows 98se run much better and way more stable on my other machines. Whats really cool about this project is that I will be using hardware that would otherwise just be collecting dust.

Here's the hardware :

ECS nforce3a Motherboard

A64 3200 Venice

Ati 9800 pro

Kworld tv/capture card

512mb or 1gig geil ddr400

80gig WD hard drive (maybe two of them)

500w psu

Are my specs too low ? Or just about right.

This is my first time building a pc for this purpose. I need to make the system fairly easy to use for my wife. I have heard of using Linux for a htpc, but I am unfamiliar with it. The tv card has its own software and a remote, but if there is better dvr software please let me know ! (either free or low cost) Thanks guys !

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i don't think you are doing bad... I was using ATI's Multimedia Center under 98SE with a P3 800 and a AIW 9200 and using it as a PVR... I had problems time-shifting, but that was because of slow processor. I think you'll be happy with your setup.

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Incidentally I'm also building an HTPC currently. I'm using Ubuntu Linux.

Don't get me wrong: I've made very long posts about why Linux could never replace my 98SE for my desktop computer, but an HTPC isn't a desktop computer, it's a dedicated system, so a dedicated OS is a good idea.

As for making a comfortable PVR, MythTV comes to mind. Much simpler than trying to rig something up in Windows.

As for myself, I have special needs, so I'll probably code up a little something myself based on VideoJack.

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