Freevo is an HTPC (Home Theater PC) solution that allows the user to store all types of digital media collections such as music, videos, photos, etc. It also gives users the capability to manage these digital files through a remote TV interface. A built-in web interface enables the viewing of TV guides and the scheduling of recordings from anywhere around the globe.
Freevo is completely DRM free and plays virtually all forms of video formats. It is adaptable to a standalone HTPC computer with TV plus remote and an ordinary desktop computer or laptop.
Among the more salient Freevo features are the following:
- Capable of running on Linux, OSX, and Windows
- Supports multiple tuners allowing users to watch and record programs simultaneously
- Detects and removes commercials
- Plays MP3/Ogg/Wav/Flac, DIVX, MPEG4, and other audio file formats that Windows Media Player and Xine ffmpeg support
- Tunes in to Internet radio from around the world
- Reads news headlines and the weather
- Views and imports images from a digital camera
- Plays games
- Controls home automation equipment
MythTV is a set of integrated application programs allowing the user to build a mythical home media convergence box or an HTPC (home theater PC) solution using open source software and operating systems. The programs are compatible with Linux and Mac OS X (Power PC and Intel). However, they do not run on Windows.
MythTV affords users the following capabilities:
- Live television can be paused, rewound, and forwarded.
- Multiple video capture cards can be installed to record several programs at a time.
- Backends (multiple servers) may be installed with each having multiple video capture cards
- Frontends (multiple clients) may be connected with each having the capability to view all available programs.
- Any combination of MPEG-2, MJPEG, DVB, HDTV, USB, and Firewire capture devices may be used.
- UPNP clients should automatically see content from a user’s MythTV system as MythTV implements a UPNP server.
MeediOS is the free open source version of the closed source Meedio that operates within a Windows environment. It is a front end home theater system for a personal computer that the user may configure. It allows the user to access and manage media files like photos, music, and video files. It is also capable of recording and pausing live television.
MeediOS incorporates the plug-ins MovieNight and MyMovies. These facilitate the user’s management of movies and videos. MeediOS also automatically imports movie information from IMDB and The Movie DB through the Moviemee Importer.
Plug in developers steadily upgrade the capabilities of the program’s movie module. Its other features include browsing 3D cover art, navigating jukeboxes, and playlist editors. The audio importer supports virtually every music format available.
MeediOS also incorporates such features as fan art, watch tags, season browsing, actor lists, and TV show banners.
SesamTV Media Center is a multimedia software that runs on Windows 98/2000/XP. It helps users in the storage and management of their digital music, photo, and movie files. It also enhances their TV and movie viewing or music listening experience through Internet radio or the user’s own files.
SesamTV offers a user friendly interface. The user can personalize the home page’s skins. Shortcuts to other PC software can also be added to the Main Menu list.
The software allows the user to watch, record, and pause live TV (time-shifting). While a TV tuner card is needed for this feature, SesamTV is compatible with a long list of DVB-T and DVB-S tuner cards.
Its audio player can play music files in MP3 format from a CD or any device connected through a USB port or stored in the hard disk. It can also automatically extract ID3V2 tags for information on artist, album, and music style.
The video player supports all video file types and it plays files from the hard disk, a CD, or any USB connected device. The DVD player can be viewed full screen or any size the user prefers. Video controls may be accessed with a remote control.
The photo album supports JPEG and BMP files. It allows users to create a slideshow with music in the background.
LinuxMCE is a free add-on to Kubuntu, a derivative of the Ubuntu operating system. It provides solutions for media, security, telecommunications, network management, and home control and automation.
With LinuxMCE, media can be organized with special meta tags. The user can also listen to audio files or view video/movie files in any room in the house. With the use of Bluetooth mobile phones or iButtons, media can follow a user as he or she moves from one room to another.
LinuxMCE also automatically detects new media including those on other computers within the network and those on NAS (network-attached storage). Using Ethernet, RS-232, IR, and USB, LinuxMCE can be used to control all audio and visual gear, including the system’s automatic start.
This program can monitor security cameras, sensors, and trigger events. With a mobile phone equipped with LinuxMCE’s orbiter software, the program can transmit security alerts either through a picture or verbal message to the phone. The user can also instruct the program how to respond through the phone.
LinuxMCE also allows the use of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) anywhere in the house with minimal installation setup. It also features voicemail, advance caller ID, and call forwarding.
The program can also take the place of a router, acts as a firewall, and manage NAS (network-attached storage) devices.
For home automation, LinuxMCE can control lighting, room temperature levels, curtain drawing, and sprinkler activation.