Windows Based PVR Software
July 16, 2009 2:51 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking for free PVR software, preferably for Windows XP.


- Free

- Ideally able to run on Windows XP, but Ubuntu would work if absolutely necessary

- Able to setup programming remotely using web, VNC or remote desktop (iphone would be an added bonus)

- No need for HD

- Just need the ability to record programs. Ability to select a program and select "RECORD ALL NEW EPISODES OF THIS SHOW"

- Will be playing files on an xbox running XBMC over a wired network

- Nice to have: Auto-conversion from MPEG2 to xvid/divx or similar (compatible w/ XBMC is the main requirement)

- Nice to have: Removal of commercials.

I used to have Snapstream's Beyond TV which did most if not all of this (not the iphone stuff, but this might be supported now). Had a massive hard drive failure a couple of years ago, and am pretty sure I lost my registration information at the same time. I'm going to see if I can recover it, but in the meantime if there's something else out there... I've read previous threads on HTPC / PVR setups, but for different reasons they didn't fit my criteria, and I imagine there's been new stuff released since.

I'm using a Hauppage 150 I believe. Thanks.
posted by backwards guitar to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I used SageTV for a few years. Not Free.
I was very happy with it until a thunderstorm took out the PC and I got tired of the stress of having to reconfigure the whole thing.
I replaced it with a TiVo. Better!
posted by Drasher at 2:54 PM on July 16, 2009

I'm pretty sure GB-PVR could do all that when I last used it a few years ago.
posted by djb at 3:14 PM on July 16, 2009

Orb is free and does a decent job of recording there is also an app for the iPhone (which is not free) Orb requires a hardware MPEG 2 card but recordings are very good. The web interface makes for easy recording and scheduling. as well as playback from anywhere. however IMHO a set top box is the least hassle free way to go i have the VIP 622 from Dish Network and it's pretty slick. I have also used GBPVR and while more complicated to setup it will do most of what you want.
posted by jmsta at 4:39 PM on July 16, 2009

Orb is more of a CPU hog than GB-PVR but has a free program guide (EPG). Ever since Zap2it stopped providing free listings, GB-PVR needed Schedules Direct ($20/yr) for data (in the US at least).
posted by djb at 5:49 PM on July 16, 2009

I don't have a good answer, but I do know someone who might.
posted by radioamy at 8:57 AM on July 17, 2009

I used GBPVR a few years ago(also tried mediaportal), back when listings from zap2it labs were free. Now you have to pay as djb says. I don't believe you can find a free listings service nowadays.
The best option is to probably pay the one-time fee for SageTV and get unlimited listings in the future.
posted by ijoyner at 4:39 AM on July 19, 2009

I gave Orb a try, but the interface was unwieldy at best. I managed to recover my Beyond TV subscription information, so I'll most likely stick with that for now.

Thanks for all the answers.
posted by backwards guitar at 1:17 PM on July 20, 2009

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