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- bmfrosty - 2007-08-08 06:02

Iceman-UK Wrote:This is similar to the idea I had in my mind ever since I heard of the Linux-XBMC project. I am seriously considering starting a company to offer and support pre-built PCs specialized in running Linux-XBMC. With the idea that a portion of it goes back to the very talented folks behind it. One step towards that though is trying gauge when a Release Candidate of v1.0 will be ready :-) no pressure yuvalt!

Another step is to establish a hardware platform. So in a "wisdom of crowds" kind of way, what would you all suggest as a minimum and/or recommended spec?

The biggest problem is finding vendors for all the parts. Especially those motherboards and cases.

This Mini-ITX board seems like a pretty good starting point for this type of project, but even then, I'm not sure that it's even fast enough, and I'm not sure if you could put together systems cheap enough to justify not going with a mac mini.

As for myself, I'd love to see something spec'd like the mac mini, but designed to boot off of a USB drive, small, and fanless. I stream all my media off of the network anyway. If the plan is to go with the Mac Mini anyways, I'll be extremely happy, since there will be a ton of cpu time available most of the time, if someone adds support for bittorrent and newzbin.


- Iceman-UK - 2007-08-08 08:53

bmfrosty Wrote:The biggest problem is finding vendors for all the parts. Especially those motherboards and cases.

This Mini-ITX board seems like a pretty good starting point for this type of project, but even then, I'm not sure that it's even fast enough, and I'm not sure if you could put together systems cheap enough to justify not going with a mac mini.

As for myself, I'd love to see something spec'd like the mac mini, but designed to boot off of a USB drive, small, and fanless. I stream all my media off of the network anyway. If the plan is to go with the Mac Mini anyways, I'll be extremely happy, since there will be a ton of cpu time available most of the time, if someone adds support for bittorrent and newzbin.

Thanks for your reply. I will look at the Mac Mini more closely. For a while now though, I was thinking that customers would accept something in a higher price bracket. Something like the Asus Pundit (http://www.pcpro.co.uk/reviews/87365/asus-pundit-p1ah1.html#). Not only does it look good (black case, subtle blue led - available in very-fashionable-these-days white too), it is designed from the ground up to function as a media center. There was mention of H.264 decoding earlier in this thread, this machine has intergrated graphics hardware of the nVidia 6150 class which can help accelerate hi-def decoding. As the review says, it can accept two full height PCI cards which gives nice compatibility with wireless cards. I know that digital TV recording and PVR functionality is not talked about with Linux-XBMC but the other slot could easily feature a digital TV encoder. Then there are nice touchers like the readers for CompactFlash, plus SD, MMC and Memory Stick cards built-in. The list goes on!

Well, I definitely think its worth trying. This "platform" seems to be used my some of the commercial Myth-TV vendors out there. I'm planning on getting one in the near future and giving it a thorough test drive with Linux-XBMC.


- Geeba - 2007-08-08 16:38

The mini ITX's just dont seem to be a big enough step from the original Xbox to me... the one highlighted above... "1.0GHz Fanless C7 CPU"... theres already 1Ghz and 1.4Ghz Xboxes that cant decode HD.... cant see them having the grunt... It would be nice if it went to an appliance like the Xbox... they're pretty much like toasters... all more or less the same.....

From what I've read Media TV's are going to be the next big thing, TV's with internet/LAN connections HDD's and the media software built in them.... fanless, noiseless..... extra-boxless.... Eek


- Gamester17 - 2007-08-08 17:51

grisen Wrote:The new Mac Mini is here. But no HD DVD or Blu-ray Sad

http://www.apple.com/macmini/
That is not the upgraded version that is suppose to be release later this fall (october) together with leopard, the next Mac OS X version, together with the next generation of Mac laptops. The only thing new in the Mac Mini you linked to is the CPU (it now comes with a 1.83GHz or 2.0GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor), it still have the old Intel second-generation GMA 950 graphics which is not good enough for XBMC. The next generation Mac Mini is suppose to be based on Intel's Santa Rosa platform which features Intel's GMA X3100 graphics and that shouldhave everything that XBMC needs (Pixel/Vertex Shader Model 3.0 or later and hardware 3D acceleration).


- mace - 2007-08-10 21:04

According to http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/musicandvideo/hdvideo/choosingpc.aspx a 3Ghz single core should be able to handle 1080P so i think a C2D has a chance to do it in cpu without so much help from the gfx adapter but it probobly would require pretty large changes to optimize for cpu instead of gfx support


- KeRbDoG - 2007-08-15 01:27

Any more update lads on the progress of XBMC on Linux?


- spiff - 2007-08-15 01:35

with a single (!) active dev things dont progress very fast......


- calibos - 2007-08-15 04:20

spiff Wrote:with a single (!) active dev things dont progress very fast......

Say it aint so!!Shocked

Is the port project stalling??


- Nuka1195 - 2007-08-15 04:54

I was going to paste the log, copied from tortoise, but it copies more than just the log entry.

There were quite a few changes recently.


- untg99 - 2007-08-15 05:55

calibos Wrote:Say it aint so!!Shocked

Is the port project stalling??

I don't think it's stalling, I get weekly updates and there's always a few modified files etc...
I have many friends who will be eager to have this in their lounge rooms.
As far as I know there is nothing that comes close to this, even the recently released Xbox 360 (which I've iterated in other threads) doesn't. I would prefer THIS VERSION over the Xbox 360 for XBMC Linux's media support alone!
If it takes off, which it will, XBMC Linux will become the media center standard I think. With complicated crap like Mythtv around (not crap because it's crap but crap because it's complicated) even in it's current form, this is much easier to setup than mythtv which has been around for years and even has a 7.04 Synaptic install for it, no offense to mythtv or anything. ok, I went on a bit long, but you get the point (I hope...).


- spiff - 2007-08-15 07:30

nah, its not stalling. its progressing at the pace one can expect.

we got exactly one dev after our plea for help (d4rk) and he's doing a great job. cant expect it to progress faster with the avail human resources. the rest of the devs are either not interested, are working on application updates instead of porting (like me) or got new jobs and shit lately and hence other priorities. xbmc is already a monster to maintain for the few of us that works on it, so when u throw in another enormous task which is to be done by the same ppl, progress necessarily reflects that.


- untg99 - 2007-08-15 08:03

I'm learning c++ as fast as I can Cool


- calibos - 2007-08-15 15:48

I know the people involved don't do it for the money but would more financial help....well, Help to get more Devs on board or incentivised to work on the port project?? ie. say there was enough money to be shared out to the devs that they didn't have to work the overtime in their real jobs to pay for their new Audi.Laugh

I mean I've used a few useful shareware programmes in my time and have often said to myself that I must make a donation to this project or that project. I am ashamed to say that I have never donated to any project in the end. I would definately 100% guaranteed donate to XBMC INC. In fact as soon as I finish this post I am going to donate straight away Big Grin Its quite simply the best, most useful, most used piece of software I or my family have ever used free or otherwise.

How big is the userbase? Imagine if there was even only 10,000 active users(I am sure there are lots more) and we all donated the 50 dollars!!! No one is ever, "Meh, XBMC is alright I s'pose" Anyone who ever posts on any XBMC related forum is always uber enthused about the application. Does the level of donations match that apparent enthusiasm from the userbase for the project?

Do we need to organise a new donation drive?

Its just that XBMC on the actual Xbox is surely almost the best that it can be given the hardware. Surely the devs have rung every last clock cycle of performance out of it? Have developed every useful bit of functionality, script etc. ie get it to a stable 2.02 point release and then just leave the skinners and scripters to it and just update the mplayer codecs and maintain compatabilty with the websites and servers xbmc uses for its various functions.........or is just maintaining (treading water) such current compatability a full time job for the devs? I know that half or probably most the fun(if you can call it that) for the devs is that very challenge of ringing every last mhz of performance out of the hardware that I mentioned earlier but again like I said earlier....surely they have hit a very thick brick wall.

I would have thought at this stage that the devs would relish the 'new challenge' and the new possibilities afforded by newer hardware.

For instance, Gamester17s' posts about the next gen Mac mini have me salivating!! Does it not have the devs salivating? Surely the XBMC Port in combination with the upcoming mini (or any box with the specific xbmc hardware requirements) is the holy grail of hardware/OS/GUI combos. The ultimate media streamer. The ultimate combo of reasonably affordable hardware with the full gamut of connections, the power to play anything, the 'under tv' aesthetics, the small form factor, the coolest most fully functioning media OS/GUI out there. It just seems like the convergence of technology required, price,size,aesthetics,hardrive sizes/price of Nas's etc. Its all come together now or in the very near future....we just need the XBMC port to finish it all off.

Heres hopin'NodNod

Right, I'm off to make my donationBig Grin


- spiff - 2007-08-15 16:07

while donations are welcome we are not short on money. we are short on man power and money wont help a bit there (well, hiring someone but lets face it - thats just not realistic). i for one will certainly not drop my phd job no matter how much money is thrown at me. to give you an idea; i was offered a job that pays 3x what i have now and i instantly declined that one as well. i like my job.

anyways, donated money dont go to us devs. it goes into keeping the project alive, hosting isnt free...

this is a hobby. some ppl like to nit, some ppl like to collect stamps, i like to code.
personally i find porting rather boring, its much more pleasant to polish the application, add new features and fix bugs. in the end this benefits all the ports. i havent gotten any hd gear yet and hence xbmc on the xbox is far from outdated for my uses.

i cannot speak for the others but personally i wouldnt touch anything that has apple on it with a ten foot pole.


- jmarshall - 2007-08-15 22:16

Indeed - I appreciate the joke about the Audi though.

Fortunately, the small amount I've received in donations (mostly consisting of a couple of modchips and a little cash from "code this and I'll pay you $x") has been more than I expected or desired. I'm with spiff - I'm not in it to make my fortune (rather fortunately Tongue) - I'm in it because I enjoy it, and because I am improving the application for my own use.

With that said, the donations are ofcourse extremely valued and appreciated - they help pay for the hosting (and software) of these forums, the website and so on.

If and when there's an obvious hardware platform for us to focus on, then a donation drive may be appropriate at that point to help developers out in purchasing the hardware.

The main thing we need at this point is more developers Smile

Cheers,
Jonathan