Sunday, June 22, 2008

WebGuide


I have been looking for a solution for streaming and transcoding videos to our Xbox from the Windows Home Server.  I found WebGuide, and decided to try it out.



WebGuide is a plugin for Windows Home Server that lets you acess the content from your home server from the web.  This is different than the file based access that comes with Windows Home Server. You can view thumbnails of photos.  Also, you can stream music and video files from the server.  WebGuide relies on external transcoders to make your content playable.





I installed WebGuide and the recommend other applications.  The integration with Windows Home Server web pages is really nice.  It appears as a link on the main page, and it can use the main Windows Home Server authentication.



Viewing photos worked very well.  WebGuide exposes the folder structure as albums, and then shows thumbnails as you enter the "albums".  You can also view various sizes of the photos.  For music, it looks like it can deliver m3u files for playback in media players, or can play in the flash player.  I wasn't able to get music or video to play with Firefox running on my laptop running Ubuntu.  I don't know if this was because the transcoders weren't configured correctly or if the mplayer or flash plugins couldn't handle the streams.



I decided to uninstall WebGuide, as it doesn't offer a solution to playback the content on my Xbox and I don't really need another solution for playing my content from the web.