Computer users often stream movies, television shows and music straight from the Internet, and this trend shows no sign of losing momentum. As a result, many people are using their televisions less. Being able to stream media files from your computer to your television is an effective way to get expanded use out of both devices. With the right equipment and some time, you can be enjoying your favourite videos and MP3 play lists on anything from an old CRT to a big-screen plasma TV.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Xbox 360
- Xbox 360 wireless network adaptor
- PC running Windows Vista Ultimate, Vista Home Premium or Media Center Edition 2005
- Wireless router
Write down the security password for your wireless router. If it is new, change the default password to something only you know. There will be instructions for how to do this in the manual that came with the router.
Plug the Xbox wireless adaptor into the back of your Xbox 360. Turn the Xbox on and navigate to the "System" area of the dashboard. Select "Network Settings," then "Edit Settings." Open "Wireless Settings" from the list that appears (you may need to scroll down to see it). Input the required information about your wireless network (including the password your wrote down) and navigate back to the dashboard.
Turn on the PC you intend to use with the television. On the Xbox, select "Media Center" in the "Media" area and follow the on-screen instructions that will allow the console to search the network for your PC. Once the Xbox has found it, it will create an eight-digit security key. Write this down.
Open Windows Media Center and click on "Tasks," then "Add Extender" and enter the eight-digit security key generated by the Xbox, as well as any other requested information. If you have Windows XP and are running Media Center Edition 2005, you will need to go online and download the Media Center Extender software from the Xbox website before performing the above task (see Resources).
Select "Media Center" from the "Media" tab to access media data on your PC from your Xbox. The D pad is used for navigating menus, and the A and B buttons respectively for making selections and returning to the previous screen. The bumpers control fast forward and rewind during video playback, while pressing the right stick successively pauses and plays the current media file.
Tips and warnings
- Zune free software can be used in the place of Windows Media Center to connect the PC to the Xbox, though the graphical interface for accessing media files on the Xbox will be less advanced.
- Rather than having to use the Xbox controller, many universal remotes are able to interface with the console and can also be used to control the television.
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