My parents have a mediacenter which I build for them a few years ago. My parents don’t need a lots of functions and watching TV, having an EPG, and be able to watch a dvd so now and then would satisfied them. So I installed Windows Vista MCE for them and configured it. Unfortunately there where some issues; so now and then the sound would stutter, the tv quality was poor, and once in a year it just crashes and needed a reinstall. A reinstall would take half a day cause driver issues and setting it up as best as possible.
About two months ago, it crashed again and I thought why not give Windows 7 a try. I use Windows 7 at work since the beta and I like it (even when I’m typing this on a Linux distro). So I put in the DVD and installed Windows 7, I set the refresh rate right and started MCE. All drivers where correctly installed and even almost all OS settings where good. I run through the setup of Windows 7 and I don’t know why, the image quality was way better then in Vista. The whole GUI runs smoother, the audio was working perfectly and they are running it now for about three weeks and their first impressions are very good, hopefully it stays running this way, but for now it is definitely worth trying if you don’t want the hassle you (can) have with MediaPortal or other systems and of course are satisfied with the minimum of options and plugins you get with Windows 7.by