Today I embark on a new venture, setting up a Mac media server using an old Mac Mini. My plan is to copy all of my iTunes media to the device, plug it into my network and TV, and use Front Row to transform it into an AppleTV-style set-top box. I’ll be able to control it using the Mac Mini’s remote but because it’s on the network, I’ll also be able to control the “server” from my laptop via ARD. No extra keyboard or mouse required. I’ve loaded Handbrake for ripping my DVDs and I plan to set-up a shared Applescript folder to easily add content I’ve bought on my laptop to the Media Server’s copy of iTunes. Stay tuned for more details.
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I just recently picked up one of the HP EX470 Mediasmart Windows Home Servers for the house. I’ll be getting a review up in the next few days with both good and bad things I’ve found about this device. I went from a 2.8Ghz Xeon with 1.5TB in a Raid-5 array running Windows 2008 Enterprise to a AMD Sempron 1.5Ghz with 512Mb Ram using software data mirroring. I’ll have pics and stats up along with it’s performance while streaming multiple video streams around my house. My Xbox 360 in the living room and the Xbox running XBMC in my bedroom are both connected via 802.11N.
I just recently downloaded and tried out Handbrake. Unfortunately, I had to install AnyDVD to rip them my WHS…. I’m getting ready to try out Cinemanow….
Let me know how the mini works out..