Microsoft Media Center TV Pack now Official

Microsoft has released yet another product, Windows Media Center TV Pack, codenamed Fiji. The details of this product has not yet been announced by the company and thus keeping it a secret.

Yesterday, Microsoft made the Windows Media Center TV Pack official.

“Formally codenamed Fiji, the TV Pack is meant to add support for various TV signal types within Vista Media Center. News about the TV Pack has been leaking out for the past month, and instead of waiting for CEDIA as originally planned Microsoft let the cat out of the bag today so people will know exactly what to expect and not to expect within the TV Pack.

First of all, yes the TV Pack is OEM only. The official word for the OEM only release has basically centered around the installation method, which according to Microsoft was designed for a clean install of Vista Service Pack 1 (plus a few patches) before the new software bits can be loaded. As some have already figured out, it is possible to avoid the clean install method and just install it on your existing Vista SP1 install, but of course it isn’t suggested. Outside of the install method the TV Pack is very dependent on new hardware (TV Tuners) and thus that likely played into the decision to make the product OEM only. Sadly, Microsoft seems to have forgotten the big splash they wanted to make by including Media Center in two of the Vista SKUs and getting away from the OEM only release. By providing the TV Pack as an OEM only release they have (once again) kicked all existing news while they were already down.”

Windows Media Center TV Pack 2008 RTM is Build 6.1.1000.18273, designed for implementation on top of Windows Media Center in Windows Vista RTM or Windows Vista Service Pack 1. More importantly though, the good folks at Redmond choose not to allow home theater PC enthusiasts install the upgrade themselves, rather opting to send packs only to OEMs.

Fiji also does add support for international standards such as ISDB-T, DVB-S, and DVB-T along with the US ClearQAM system. I am simply disappointed by Microsoft’s performance.

[ Via CrunchGear, Softpedia]