Windows 7 Build 7000 upgrade of Vista Media Center

Today, I finally upgraded our trusty homebrew Vista Media Center (VMC) system to the Windows 7 public beta (Build 7000) in the thought that by now it should be pretty solid and the obvious issues resolved…

The new Windows 7 media center UI is great!, although in the guide the dynamic column for the channels can mean that you end up with less guide content on right hand pane than in the previous VMC…. it is very early days though, and looking great thus far! 🙂

The dual-tuner issue currently doing the rounds on TGB (see is a real pain, and will prevent me from testing this build on my primary media center which is a shame for us all – me to wow guests, wife, etc. with what’s new coming down the line, and Microsoft for the feedback. I’m a diligent tester and on the WHS PP2 connect beta (as in feedback), was on the EBS TAP last year (inc. Redmond airlift), and have a good media center environment for testing (WHS plus XBox360 & Linksys extenders used as primary devices, both wired & wireless).
I also evangelize media center and have built several systems for friends & family using VMC, but built like a good custom installer/OEM with years of experience in corporate deployment (not just thrown on like your average Dell build! 😉 )

Good job I took a WIM (imagex) image of the VMC build before deploying Windows 7 and copied it to an archive just in case the USB drive fails… might need it before the weekend is out! 🙁

Interestingly the cleaned images before and after upgrade are very similar in size...





As I was updating this post my wife came down from out bedroom (Linksys DMA2100 extender) cursing as the bloody TV isn’t working again (again..?!?! come on that isn’t fair!), we eventually ascertain it is defiantly not as stable as before… looks aren’t everything I tell myself hmmm…. a hasty retreat me thinks! (maybe a clean build, rather than upgrade is needed..? I’d better get my coat!).


This is a double shame, and an embarrassing one at that! Only earlier I’d rather prematurely and enthusiastically Emailed a couple of friends who I foolishly thought would benefit from Win7MC… I can’t think of the beating they would give me for blaming me as their wives & children left them for turning their perfectly working VMC digital home into a digital junk yard! 😉 okay okay! I know it’s Beta software! (I should know better!).

Subject: Upgrade to your Media Center… Windows 7 Media Center beta… Windows 7 Media Center Revealed | We Got Served


When we spoke today and I mentioned distractions… rather than doing much needed accounts & finance stuff I was about to take an image of our media center pre install of the first public beta of Windows 7. Windows 7 is the next big thing to be released from Microsoft in time for next Christmas, or maybe earlier…


I upgraded our Vista Media Center (very similar build to yours) this afternoon so all programs, settings, content, etc. remained intact and it works a dream thus far (only been running about 3hrs… 😉


Lots of nice new, cool features, including one you may be interested in… native support for H.264 / HiDef TV broadcast (no cards yet mind), and Blu-Ray! 🙂 Oh and it’s noticeably faster than Vista as it has less demands on the system – does more on less hardware, maybe even as quick as XP 😉


Btw, this beta lasts until end of August 2009, and in the coming months there will be more which will last beyond this (unless of course they release the final code).


So if either of you are interested (suggest an image 1st) let me know and we can sort it.


If you are brave, you can download from here and do it yourself, if not so brave just watch the videos…