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Year View| Summary| Highlights| Month View| Wednesday 7 May 2008 (Day View)

07.05.2008Wednesday 7 May – Unsleeping & Evil Media

Off to the city to meet Bronwen, and return Maz’s faulty rollerblades.
Drove to Indooroopilly with Grace and Stella to do some shopping.
Found that my media centre has lost the ability to play DVD’s. It simply doesn’t. PowerDVD works just fine, but Media Centre and Media Player don’t work. Last time I fought it, I lost. The TV tuner would not work, and I had to roll back to a previous Ghost image, which for some reason, does work albeit apparently without DVD support. Now I’m going to try again. Step one: Install Vista slipstreamed with service pack one, with the TV tuner card removed from the computer.
This really is insane. I have spent an unbelievable amount of time trying to fix this crap media centre, and it’s going exactly the same as last time—it’s not working. I install a clean install of Vista, slipstreamed with SP1. I ghost that. Ghost fails. So I use Acronis True Image instead. I then install Winrar, PowerDVD, the sound drivers, and reboot. I then put in the TV tuner card. Windows finds drivers for that from Windows Update. I fire up Media Centre. The TV tuner doesn’t work. Neither can I play DVD’s. Windows Media Player says my DVD’s are the wrong region, and can’t be played. They happen to be region-free DVD files on my computer. And the tuner service can’t start; it can’t find a required file. Basically exactly the same as last time. So it appears I cannot have a Vista-based media centre that plays DVD’s anymore. I can ghost back to the old install that will play TV, but I don’t appear to be able to play TV if I reinstall Vista. Perhaps it’s time to roll-back to XP, though the TV tuner didn’t work in that either last time I tried. This is horrible. Why would DVD’s not play? That doesn’t even make sense. Needless to say, PowerDVD can play them just fine, as can my Vista-based desktop machine.
Vista cannot play DVD’s from an external hard drive with UAC off. I kid you not. Workarounds include turning UAC on, copying the DVD’s to an internal drive, or mapping the external drive as a network share and accessing the DVD’s via that share. Don’t ask why, just believe, and take a slow, deep breathe. It’s better than screaming. Oh, and DVD support is in the box, I didn’t need to install any DVD players or codecs.
I now have TV tuner and DVD support at the same time. For future note: Install the old, outdated drivers that came on the CD with the tuner card before installing any other type of tuner driver, and then prevent anything from ever updating those drivers. That seems to have worked so far.
Five minutes after going to bed, Bronwen called me. I picked her up from the Convention Centre.

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