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Get More Online Streaming Channels in Windows 7 Media Center

Windows 7 Media Center includes a fair amount of streaming internet TV by default, but you want to add more selections. Today we take a look at the SecondRunTV Beta Plugin that allows you to access more streaming channels.

Download and Install

First we need to download the SecondRunTV zip file (link below) and extract it to a convenient location on your machine. Make sure you’re closed out of WMC and run setup.msi.

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Go through the installation process as normal accepting the defaults.

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Using SecondRunTV

After you have it installed, launch WMC and you’ll find it in the Extras Library…click on the SecondRunTV icon.

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Now you’ll have a bunch of new channels listed in alphabetical order to choose from including Hulu and YouTube.

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Select a channel and you’re presented with the programs that are available for streaming.

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Here we selected American Dad and can choose between different episodes and clips.

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A lot of the content is pulled from Hulu and will launch inside Windows Media Center. You will have the traditional Hulu Controls and can watch in full-screen mode as well.

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SecondRunTV makes it easier to find different content from a central location inside WMC. While watching a program you can pull up the menu to select other episodes.

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In the top menus you can select different categories like TV by Network, By Title, Movies, and Search. Here is an example of movies that are available to watch.

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Right now a lot of times there won’t be a Poster Preview of the show on each channel. But there is a title and overview below so you need to watch for that.

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While the majority of the channel content we tried comes from Hulu, you can also access the site directly.

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Then you can log in and browse for the free content available.

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If you’re a Hulu Plus subscriber, it will work fine with that as well.

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It also offers easy access to YouTube videos and the site itself where you can log in, search for content, and comment on different videos.

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Conclusion

While this will give you easy access to several online streaming channels in a central location, keep in mind it’s still in Beta. We experienced some freeze ups and crashes occasionally and it doesn’t currently work with extenders. If you’re an early adopter and want to check out what SecondRunTV has to offer, you might want to try it out. As the project continues to develop we would only expect more features and better stability.

If you live in the UK, another plugin you might want to try for additional streaming content is TunerFree MCE as most of it’s content is only available in the UK.

Download SecondRunTV Beta

Brian Burgess worked in IT for 10 years before pursuing his passion for writing. He's been a tech blogger and journalist for the past seven years, and can be found on his about me page or Google+

  • Published 08/6/10

Comments (6)

  1. Leandri

    *ears perk up*

    Is that Google Reader I spy with my little eye?

    On a related note, I think I’ll have to give Windows Media Center a second chance. I’ve generally not found these things to be useful for me specifically, as my media center experience is mostly through a DVR and Netflix.

  2. kzinti1

    Nice! Thanks!

  3. Little Toucan

    I read this a little late so I think SecondRun TV’s server is down. Never used Media Center before but tried it with my Netflix account and the quality of the streaming was better than streaming directly from Netflix…go figure! Did manage to download TunerFree MCE and that’s pretty cool.

  4. Ash Moollan

    Would love to know whether this service is available to users outside of the United States as I find that more and more of these services are geo-restricted and unfortunately we cannot access them from Australia.

    Nice article btw, thanks
    Ash

  5. Erick

    SecondRun.TV is no longer free for the current version. It now costs #3.99. Not much, but still not free. The legacy version (1.0) is available through the site, but from what I gather there may be issues trying to watch Hulu channels.

  6. Chris

    Hi,

    Are any of these streaming channels/plugins available for Australian viewers?

    Cheers

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