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Help optimize my old HTPC


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I just want to ask you guys this!

I have just assembled a HTPC of some quite old parts.

[This is the system]

Motherboard: QDI Advance 10T (old one)

CPU: Intel Celeron 800Mhz

RAM: 128Mb

Graphic: Inno3D nVidia Geforce 2 MX

HDD: 1x8Gb, 1x16Gb

Network: Noname 10/100Mbit

Remote: ATi Remote Wonder

As you see its not ideal for a HTPC but i have made a very well stripped down version of WinXP to make it as clean and fast as possible.

But my question is can i tweak it and optimize it any further.

The purpouse is MOVIES, MUSIC and show Pictures, The weather and such easy tasks

The most resourcefull task i guess is the Movies (XviD and DVDs)

Give me tips of tweaks and configs and optimize tips for this quite old machine

To search te net didnt give much since most tips are for fully intalled WinXP on newer machines and ALOT of the tips are faulty and bougus tweaks anyway so i thought why not ask here, the best resource on the net :)


(ill be happy to give more info on my system if you wanna help)

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First and foremost I would invest in more RAM. And if Linux were as flexible as XP is when it comes to having a lot of software, I would run Linux. But since you are running XP you should get more memory, and if you are running dvds and ripping a lot on this machine, well then I think upgrade of your proc would be in order. I am sorry to say this but I dont think your comp will be much up to par...I mean what do you really intend to do with this? It is not going to be powerful enough to rip DVDs or encode and so on....

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As suryad was saying invest in more ram. XP likes ram and add to that you are doing movies and mp3. Well it takes ram to convert these as well. The HD is on the small side because these will eat up space quick.

If you are going to burn dvd invest in a good duel layer dvd burner(dont buy the first 1 you see) do some research and get 1 on sale.

A good burning software Myself I like nero and nve coupled with any dvd. DVD squeeze is a good free software for putting lots of data in a small single layer dvd

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For a HTPC, 800MHz is the lowest you can go for capture.

You will benefit the most from more RAM, however, install XP with 128MB of RAM; this will disable many features for you. Install Chipset + Network Drives, WinUpdate, then Install your new RAM and everything else.

Keep UPnP enabled for full use of WM Connect.

If you have anything 'on-board' then it should be replaced with a product that has its own controller; this includes USB/Firewire.

You didn't list anything for sound.

You might want to check your IRQs.

Try moving your cards around so each device to have its own IRQ, then use /pcilock in your boot.ini

Disable as many devices as you can from inside the BIOS (Secondary Master, Serial, Parallel), then add /fastdetect:Com1,2,3,4 to your boot.ini

Download the reg tweaks and run them, and reboot.

If you want a common interface, check out Nero 7.0. It includes (well so did 6.6) utilities for media sharing.

If this is going to be a media server, don't use home, as it will limit your connections to other systems.

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Okey i will not use this machine to encode or rip movies/music. Only PLAY movies music on it.

(i found some more memory to put in aswell now)

And what i mean by optimize is software tweaks (i will not invest any money on new hardware for this machine)

I am using meedio for the HTPC software! What about Windows XP Media Center Edition? is that an option to look at.

Edited by Fascix
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