Great application for the X-Box

Talk about anything related to Gentoox or Gentoo.
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walter_3_d
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Great application for the X-Box

Post by walter_3_d » Fri Aug 05, 2005 1:59 pm

I just setup a Pluto Home system (smarthome + media server, plutohome.com, free open source). It’s really cool. It has a streaming movie server, music server, pvr. Plus it does home automation and controls a/v equipment too. There’s only 1 problem…

You designate 1 PC to be the server; they call it the core. It exposes a network boot image for any other PC in the house, so your PC becomes dual purpose—normal pc, or net boot and it’s a set top box. You control it with Bluetooth mobile phones or web pads. And all the set top boxes in the house work together. Your media even follows you as you move from room to room if you keep the phone on. The problem is I don’t have enough media pc’s for all the rooms in my house, and buying a full PC for each room is too expensive. Plus there’s no video cards for the PC that have component video output—which is the only way I can get HDTV into my tv.

The X-Box seems perfect as a media director. It’s a PC inside, right? So why couldn’t it boot like normal as an Xbox, or net boot as a pluto media director? Then it would be part of a whole house solution that did everything. I could even use the Xbox to turn on my sprinklers if I wanted, and do all sorts of stuff with it. Plus, since Pluto gives it a network boot image, space is no longer an issue—all the software could be stored on the main server. And the XBox has component video and it’s quiet and cheap.

Does anybody have an idea if it would be possible to use the XBox as a media director like that, doing a network boot? Then I could just buy a few of the XBox’s rather than having to buy regular PC’s.

letonez
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this has a lot of potential

Post by letonez » Sun Aug 14, 2005 4:44 pm

The Pluto Home system looks really cool. I can't believe I haven't stumbled across it yet - thanks for the post.

From what I can see, the xbox is indeed a good candidate to run as a Pluto Director. If you get a mod chip with cromwell, you could run the xbox as both a gaming system and a Pluto Director. You'll need to patch the kernel in the Director image with the xbox-linux kernel patches, change the kernel boot parameters, and perhaps change/patch a few other things.

The gentoox site and/or forums is probably a good place to learn about what changes may need to be done to the Director software to make it Xbox compatible. Also, the Xebian distribution might be a good place to start, as it is based on Debian just as Pluto is. Also check out xbox-linux.org, which is where you'll find the kernel patches, and other info.

I'm currently attempting to build a diskless xbox PVR frontend using an xbox-patched Minimyth distro (linpvr.org). I'm committed to using minimyth at this time, but I'm certainly going to keep an eye on Pluto in the future.

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