Linux’s recent technology in the name of Linux Media Center Edition or Linux MCE is an open source solution which combines many features like Media, entertainment, Home automation, VoIP based Phone System and a Security system. Linux MCE carries forward the networking capabilities of Linux to create a multimedia, communication and automation network which no other operating system can provide.
Transforming Ubuntu into a Linux Media Center
Transforming Ubuntu into a media center platform can be achieved by using various software as mentioned below.
XBMC: It is one of the best media centres which makes for a versatile media player in the system as it supports a wide range of audio/video formats and protocols. With this, you can not only access and use the multimedia content in your drive but also stream the content from the Web through network sharing devices. It has a user friendly interface and an easy installation procedure.
Entertainer: It is a rather simple and easy to use media center solution which can be applied to various desktop environments. To play multimedia content, it uses the Gstreamer library in the Linux system and also allows you to play pictures, audios, videos, weather and RSS feeds. Although the initial configuration and installation is not that simple because it involves running lots of scripts, the rest is a simple matter once you are through.
Elisa: It is an open source media available on the Linux and other platforms with a simple interface. It consists of only five icons on the main screen that lets you choose between Picture, Audio, Video, Plug-ins and Settings. An additional feature is it allows you to watch YouTube videos, view photos from Flickr and listen to Shoutcast with its tight integration with the Internet.
MythTV: Thanks to MythTV, the computer can be made into a digital media home entertainment system, a Personal Video Recorder or even a Home Theatre. It has also been integrated into several Linux distros, the most famous one being Mythbuntu. The others include Mythdora and KnoppMyth.
Freevo: It acts as a media manager which organizes all the media in one place, to provide convenience to the user. It uses features like mplayer or xine and an Image view to play multimedia content and providing easy viewing, respectively. Additionally, it also acts as a TV recorder by using a TV-tuner card. To extend its functionality, it comes with a series of built-in plugs that can be activated.
GeeXboX: Instead of being a software, GeeXboX is a Linux distribution built in order to turn the computer into a Home Theatre. For this, the LiveCD needs to be booted and it will run by itself. It doesn’t require any installation. It also supports playback of every kind of images and audio and video files through various physical supports.
If you are a Linux user with a huge collection of videos, music and pictures and need a platform in Ubuntu to view the files, it can be made possible through configuration of any of the above software.