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Microphone Month 5

Sweetwater Forums [Archived]

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How to convert Windows Media Center Edition into Windows XP Pro


Hi all,
This is for all of you which use to include me having trouble with Midi/Audio software and hardware in Windows Media Center Edition.
Windows Media Center Edition is actually XP Pro with a few added features!
Most of the hardware and software out is not compatible with MC due to the media center extensions installed in the operating system. Well after much digging and experimenting I have found a solution!
Here are the instructions to convert Windows Media Center Edition into Windows XP Pro.
First locate this key in the registry:
and remove the RMSvc string from the DependOnService value.
To turn off the services, goto Control Panel, Administrative Tools, Services then Stop the following services (if they exist).
Media Center Extender Resource Monitor
Media Center Extender Service
Media Center Monitor Service
Media Center Receiver Service
Media Center Scheduler Service
Remove the 'Extender Resource Monitor' from the Startup group if it exists and restart Windows.
I hope this info will help my fellow music makers!
October 2, 2006 @09:52pm

I don't think this restores all the functionality of XP Pro.
There are also a few Pro functions that are not put into MCE anymore. It's probably because they didn't want people buying the cheaper product and getting the Pro features.
I know there is some networking functionality that is less full featured in MCE, but I think it's mainly Domain and remote admin features that most people won't miss.
October 3, 2006 @02:07pm

Yes you are correct networking is limited. Since I made the changes all of my hardware and software work great now! Leave it to Microsoft to release a multimedia product that won't let you make your own multimedia!!
I just posted this in hopes it would help others running MC so they would be able to get their gear working without having to purchase another OS.
October 3, 2006 @02:19pm

Has anyone else tried this and had any sucess?
October 25, 2006 @05:01pm

I have had success walking thru this process with one of our customers. Keep in mind, though, that MCE is still unsupported by our manufacturers, so we cannot guarntee ANY functionality with MCE, nor support technical issues with hardware and software running on it. But if it works, and you're OK with that, go for it.
October 25, 2006 @06:38pm

If you don't mind, what did you get to work? I am hoping to enable the ability to add an audio interface, and allow the use of a trigger finger within Ableton Live 5? I have yet to purchase the audio interface, so I'd like to know if there is anything that has at least been sucessfully implemented. Thanks for you help on this.
October 25, 2006 @09:48pm

I got Music Creator 3 and a USB Edirol Um1ex to work with a Yamaha DGX 500 and a MicroKorg. Nothing would work properly until I did the mod. Everything is working fine now.
October 29, 2006 @06:32am

It was an 828mkIIUSB that I got to work. After posting last time, I had an incident where a ProjectMixIO did NOT work. Please, PLEASE keep in mind that this is NOT a guaranteed fix, nor will it ever be. Additionally, Sweetwater CANNOT provide support on Media Center, as none of manufacturers provide it. You are MUCH better off buying an upgrade to XP Home or Professional.
But if it does work, and you're OK with no support, go for it.
October 30, 2006 @06:29pm

It was an 828mkIIUSB that I got to work. After posting last time, I had an incident where a ProjectMixIO did NOT work. Please, PLEASE keep in mind that this is NOT a guaranteed fix, nor will it ever be. Additionally, Sweetwater CANNOT provide support on Media Center, as none of manufacturers provide it. You are MUCH better off buying an upgrade to XP Home or Professional.
But if it does work, and you're OK with no support, go for it.

Hey thanks for responding guys... I actually got a Trigger Finger Installed and working great, without having to edit the registry or do anything too drastic at all. All I did was follow the rest of the instructions without editing my registry. In other words I ended up not having to edit my registry because I did not find the same string in my version of XP MCE that was listed. I decided to see what happened if I just left that alone after I did a little research elsewhere, and I found that the string in my registry reffered to 2 known, and essential services that run normally in XP. Those values are RPCSS SSDPSRV. I can't remember exactly what they do, but they are supposedly essential to a stable operating system under all versions of XP!
So I guessed that if they were essential, the rest of the steps could work without editing my registry, and they did, so thank you! I now have full functionality of My Trigger Finger, and everything in Ableton Live, and Reason 3 work great! I have still to try to get a new sound card in there, but I don't think I'll have any trouble. I am really happy this worked out, and thanks for the help. Maybe my story will help someone else?
B.T.W. My Laptop is:
Toshiba Satellite A105-S4094
Genuine Windows® XP Media Center Edition 2005
Intel® Core™ Duo Processor T2250
1536MB DDR2
120GB 5400rpm (S-ATA)
DVD SuperMulti (+/- R double layer),
15.4” TruBrite™ widescreen WXGA
Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator 950
October 31, 2006 @05:12am

I have just discovered that my Band-in-a-Box will not detect my midi keyboard controller as the midi-input device, since I have Windows Media Center. Wow, what a disappointment!
I thought a solution might be to install a sound card, and then connect the keyboard through a midi cable rather than USB. But after reading this forum it looks like that won't work. Am I reading that right? Could someone summarize the choices I have since it seems confusing? Pros and cons? Thanks!
My system:
Microsoft Windows XP
Media Center Edition
Version 2002
Service Pack 2
HP Pavilion
AMD Athlon(tm) 64 Processor
990 MHz, 960 MB of RAM
Physical Address Extension
November 3, 2006 @04:10pm

i also have windows media center edition and am concerned about incompatibilty. like erik_hz i dont see that string value in registry, im getting same string as erik. does it work to just uncheck media center services? has anybody else tried this? id rather avoid buying a new operating system so if this works it will be great.
btw i use cakewalk home studio, soon to upgrade to home studio 4 xl if there no compatability issues and m audio audiophile 192 soundcard.
November 6, 2006 @09:54pm

I am just discovering the issue with audio tools and MCE.
I am a bit disturbed because Windows Vista, which will ship in general availability at the end of January 2007, will ship by default with MCE.
There are several versions of Vista, Home Basic, Home Premium, Pro, etc. No one will be shipping Home Basic in quantity because it so feature poor (e.g. no Aero display, etc.). It is acknowledged that the default volume version of Vista will be the Home Premium version. This version includes MCE.
Are manufacturers such as M-Audio going to step up to the plate and support Vista Premium? It seems to me this information has been well known for a while and would be the correct thing to do?
November 18, 2006 @03:59pm

Reguarding Vista, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
I have a small guess that we may see more high end support for Vista Ultimate edition, the most expensive one, because it has better support for high end hardware (multiple processors, etc.).
I would imagine that, even if we got stuck with the MCE version of Vista, audio manufacturers would have to step up to the plate and design drivers and software that would work with it. It all depends on demand.
December 14, 2006 @06:55pm

I think most audio users will be using Home Premium or Ultimate.
The Business editions don't make as much sense for audio at least in my head...as they cost more, and the only big feature difference is Bitlocker, Shadow Volume, and Remote Desktop. (and you lose games and media center playback)
Ultimate seems more geared for home theater, gaming, and overclocking power users to me than for audio production, but I'm sure some people will want it just to be sure they have every feature.
I think since all versions of Vista have the same core architecture and the Media Center component will be a documented part of the OS from the laungh, I think as long as the DAW software and Plugin manufacturers plan ahead, they shouldn't have compatiblity problems. They should be writing drivers from scratch, so I doubt they'll have the same MCE problems since they can plan ahead and start from scratch. I suspect the MCE problems we're having now are partially due to MCE sneaking onto the scene long after XP Home and Pro were already out, and drivers were already written.
There's a good article on the differences between the editions of Vista here:
December 14, 2006 @07:30pm

Has anyone any bright ideas? I have been recording and playing back with an Edriol UA 25 on window XP for some time with no probs. Just purchaed a new computer with XP MC and whenever i connect the audio outputs to an external monitor i get an awfull feedback distortion. I have tried removing some of the XP MC services & looked at the registries(although couldn't find the ones refered to in previous replys). What can i do(without purchasing XP professional at vast expense).
December 18, 2006 @12:47pm