Bring on Spring: 5 Media Center Hacks to Refresh Your 7MC

Refresh 7MC for Spring
Spring is only a week away, let’s take a look at a few ways your can breathe some new life into your Media Center. These five hacks can put a whole new face on the Media Center interface bringing a sense of renewal to an old box.

Bring new life to the start menu

media_browser Digging through the extra programs menu in Windows 7 Media Center can be a hassle. Even when you’ve added items to the Extras menu it’s just not as convenient as it could be. Why not use this guide to Add New Start Menu Strips to Media Center.

Add some flair to the TV Guide with Channel Logos

tvguide[4] Staring down the default Media Center TV Guide’s channel numbers and cryptic channel names can wear a person down.  The lack of quickly recognizable stations can even waste valuable time you could be spending on spring cleaning. Spice up your listings with My Channel Logos which will Add Channel Logos to your Media Center TV Guide.

Launch more programs from Media Center

extras Don’t limit yourself to programs that support Media Center out of the box. Launch any program from Media Center’s Extra Programs (or a custom start menu!) using Media Center Launcher and Configurator. These two little apps can add tons of new usability to your ten foot interface.

Replace Movie Library with a fresh solution

hdmovies[4] Media Center’s default Movie Library is a decent way to find your movie’s all in one place but let’s face it, it could be better. Replacing the default Movie Library with Media Browser can open up a world of new options. Sort your movies into folders with custom images using the new configuration program or get Encoding Information or Actor Pictures right inside Media Browser.

Add a whole new theme to your Media Center

nowhereroad Sometimes something as simple as just Changing Your Background can improve your whole outlook. Pick your own background to use in Media Center from a site like or use a premade 7MC theme like Homeworld or Road to Nowhere. Even better Make Your Own Theme for Media Center and share it with the world!


mrmoto said...

I couldn't ever get this to work and then 7MC wouldn't launch at all. These steps got it working again:

Repairing Windows Vista Media Center files

You can use the following steps to repair the files that are a part of Windows Vista Media Center:

1. Click on the Start menu, choose All Programs, then Accessories, then right-click on the Command Prompt item and select Run as administrator
2. Click Continue to authorize opening a command prompt with administrative privileges
3. Run this command in the cmd prompt: sfc /scannow
4. The cmd prompt should list text stating "Beginning system scan. This process will take some time."
5. Wait for the scan to complete (this can take several minutes so be patient). This command will scan all protected system files and attempt to replace incorrect versions with correct Microsoft versions
6. When the scan completes, the SFC tool will indicate whether or not it found any problems and whether or not it was able to fix them
7. If any errors are reported that SFC was unable to fix, there are steps in this knowledge base article that explain how to locate and attempt to fix the errors
8. After fixing any errors that are found, try to use Windows Vista Media Center again


MHealy said...

Which hack could you not get working and which version of Windows 7 are you using? Only the themes modify any system files and they have been tested to work on a fairly wide range of machines.

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