A Linux Home Entertainment Center

by Doug.Roberts

As I mentioned in an earlier Linux Journal article, I decided to cut the apron strings with my television provider over a year ago. Bye bye, DISH Satelite TV!

Man, you should have heard them whimper. "But sir, is there anything we can do to keep your business?"

"No, thanks. I get all of my content off the internet now. Have you tried Hulu.com*? It's great!" I can be a real jerk sometimes.

In any event, I thought I'd share my system specs with you and tell you a little bit about how I've got it configured.

Here is the hardware that I used to build the box. Total cost was ~$520.

I installed the latest KDE (Kubuntu 10.04) on it and dumbed down the interface to where it only provides the media services I want: video & music. Here are a few screen shots:

As you can see, I use Amarok as the music player, Dolphin as the file browser and I have the Linux Hulu Desktop client installed. All of the local media is streamed via NFS from one of the servers in my home office over gigabit ethernet.

Combining this machine with a Denon AVR-890 800 watt Surround Receiver, a Samsung 47" LED flat panel, a Sony Blu Ray player, and my wonderful old Celestion 9 speakers and we can do some serious rock and roll on the home entertainment center.

*Note: Hulu.com is only available for streaming content from within the United States.