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Sunday, 25 October 2009

How to launch Media Center directly in to 3rd party app

These command line switches have been covered before but I’ve seen a few posts recently with users asking how can I launch Media Center directly in to this or that third party Media Center add-in or into a particular area of media center itself.

I’ve just tested this out and I was able to launch 7MC directly in to Media Browser, My Movies 3 and TunerFree MCE, but this method should work for any third party entry point.

You can see a list of some of these command line switches here.

A new one for 7MC for example is: ehshell.exe /nostartupanimation which will launch 7MC without the fan fair start up animation.

Ok back to launching directly into our third party apps the command is:

ehshell.exe /entrypoint:{application_guid}\{entrypoint_guid}

So in this example I will show you how to look in the registry to find the application and entrypoint GUID’s for My Movies 3.0. but you can apply this method to any media center applications you have installed.

Open up the registry editor by running regedit

Navigate to the following area in the registry:

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Media Center\Extensibility\Entry Points

In here you will now see a list of entry point GUID’s down the left hand side, as shown in the screen shot, click on each entry on the left hand side in turn and look in the right hand pane until you see the Media Center application you want to launch into. In this case My Movies.

Click the image for a larger view:image

Make a note of the entry point GUID value in this case it was:



Now on the right hand side make a note of the application GUID value in this case it was:



Now I have all the information I need to launch my Media Center directly in to My Movies 3.0 and my finished command line is:

ehshell.exe /entrypoint:{8984aed5-7c9d-42f0-b2ad-c39bbcf04a25}\{810d7b87-1300-4aed-a700-1c6179f8f14b}

So now I can either just create a new desktop shortcut for Windows Media Center and include my /entrypoint switch or perhaps create my own .cmd file to launch media center.

Creating a new shortcut to ehshell.exe in the C:\Windows\ehome directory


Copy and paste your entire /entrypoint switch after ehshell.exe as shown below.


Now when I double click this new shortcut for Windows Media Center I am always taken straight into My Movies 3.0 or any other third party Media Center application of my choosing.

And as a bonus tip, run this command to launch 7MC straight in to Netflix:


I’m assuming these are global GUID’s and will work for all users? Let me know.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

How to move the Netflix & Internet TV 7MC start menu icons

Using Media Center Studio you can edit the Media Center Start Menu strips and icons. If you want to move the new Netflix and Internet TV icons to a custom menu strip you can!

Create a new custom menu or use an existing custom menu such as the one My Movies creates.

In this case I just created a new custom menu called custom menu.

Then move Promo (Movies1) for Netflix and Promo (Browse TV) for Internet TV to your custom menu strip. Save the changes in Media Center Studio.


Open Media Center and the Netflix and Internet TV icons should now appear on your custom menu strip.


Thanks to Advent for the tip about using the promo tiles.

Media Center Studio

One of my favorite Media Center related applications has to be Media Center Studio which is the replacement of MC Menu Mender. Media Center Studio allows you to customize your Media Center setup by adding new themes and editing the Media Center start menu. The application is free and is developed by Advent from the Australian Media Center Community forums. You can download Media Center Studio from the website here.


Media Center Studio is a free application for Windows Vista and Windows 7 that enables you to customize Windows Media Center. It is the successor of MC Menu Mender, bringing it up to date for Windows 7 and adding support for theme application and editing.


  • Edit your start menu - rearrange or disable native menu items
  • Create your own menu strips, and your own items to go in them
  • Monitors your application and returns to Media Center when it exits
  • Set up a button on your remote to exit your application
  • Create menu items that take you to native Media Center pages, or start media
  • Apply themes to Media Center
  • Create new themes or edit existing ones




Start Menu:


7MC Netflix – Screen shots

WThe new Netflix application has changed from the Vista version and looks more integrated in to the Windows 7 Media Center overall style with the overlays.

Also there are 13 genre pivots along the top, I seem to think this is more than was visible in Vista? Search looks the same to me.

Click the images for larger views:






7MC new Internet TV with wait for it…. Flash!

I’ve just installed the new update for Internet TV which has replaced Internet TV beta 2 in Windows 7 Media Center and it’s a brand new UI and looks pretty slick, one massive surprise is that I was prompted to install an additional update for flash support inside Media Center, I’m still in shock lol and very excited I never expected to ever see native Flash support in Media Center.

That’s the good news the bad news is that Internet TV is now locked down again and cannot be accessed by any old region as was the case with Internet TV beta 2 on the RTM.

Click the images for larger views of them:


OMG Flash inside of Media Center, Christmas has come earlier this year!


Native Flash playback inside Internet TV - 7MC.


Brought to you by CW Kid

Netflix released for Windows 7 Media Center

Looks like Netflix has been pushed out for 7MC, my machine has just picked up the icon and I was able to install the Netflix add-in software.


Friday, 16 October 2009

MCE Plugin’s index

I just stumbled across this on the Green Button forums and thought it was well worth a mention. A TGB user called JonL has created a newly updated index / list of MCE plugin’s and related utilities.

I can imagine it must have took some time to do but it’s great to see a new list being managed and maintained.

You can check out the index on here

Thursday, 15 October 2009

My Movies 3.0 – It’s finished!

My Movies 3.0 is done and dusted it’s shipped already to the custom installers yesterday and is due for public release on October 22nd.

I was involved with the beta testing and if you haven’t seen me on the Green Button forums for a while, I’ve been hanging out over at the My Movies forums for the last few weeks instead.

Congratulations to Brian the developer of My Movies, I think we are all very pleased with how My Movies 3.0 has shaped up and he’s not finished yet, the development cycle will continue with My Movies 3.1 or 3.5 on the horizon. So lets hope our wish list items make it!


ASRock NetTop packs a punch!

On the bench today we have an ASRock NetTop, I have the ION 330 BD model.

Product Home page


  • Intel® Atom™ 330 (Dual-Core CPU)
  • NVIDIA® ION™ graphics processor
  • BD combo

    After disappointing results with a Zotac ION motherboard I had high hopes for this little machine and I have to say it seems to be spot on. I gave it a fairly quick grilling running Windows 7 RTM with My Movies 3.0 PR11, PowerDVD9 Build 2201 with the Shark007 Seven Codec pack.

    Supports 1080P video playback and it played my Blu-ray rips and MKV’s in Windows 7 Media Center / PowerDVD 9 without even breaking a sweat, the CPU usage always remained low around 10% peaking at maybe 17%


    DSCN3921 ASRock NetTop next to an Acer One NetBook.

  • DSCN3922

    This unit is not fan less but is pretty quiet and would be ideal for bedroom usage. Sporting Digital Optical (SPDIF), Analog audio jacks x3, Gigabit NIC, USB 2.0 X6, HDMI, VGA.


    You can see just how small the NetTop is when compared to the diNovo Mini keyboard from Logitech.



    I need to do some more testing but at first look this little NetTop is the small form factor Media Center PC we have been waiting for, overall I’m very impressed with it so far.