Linuxmce 0810 Final is released

LinuxMCE Logo

After a few years of hard development the stable version of LinuxMCE 0810 is out! Our congratulations to all LinuxMCE developers, contributers and users. This is a giant step forward. So, hope next release 1004 which is based on Kubuntu 10.04 and already in progress, won’t take so long.

Anyway, the stable 0810 image is about 3.3GB and can be downloaded here. It includes a full-featured home automation system with covers automation – Z-Wave, X10, INSTEON, KNX/EIB, PLCBus, entertainment – VDR, MythTV, MAME games, security – surveillance with various IP, web or analog cameras, security scenarios, climate control – different climate control scenarios, Z-Wave thermostats, telephony – Asterisk and energy consumption monitoring. The system can be controlled from remote control using on-screen interface, from iOS/Android devices or from Ajax-based web interface. Also it’ll be possible to make upgrade from 0810 to 1004. So, do not hesitate and try LinuxMCE 0810 to make your home intelligent.

[via LinuxMCE]

LinuxMCE progress in 2010


The end of the year is a good time to summarize my favourite open source home automation system LinuxMCE. I’d like to start from the most important thing in my mind – building packages for version 1004 based on Kubuntu 10.04. Finally we have a chance to use modern OS with Long Term Support. That version is not stable yet but this is a very good present for New Year!

In addition to that the LinuxMCE has a lot of improvements. It becomes more and more user friendly. A big number of devices are plug-n-play now. For example, huge work was done to simplify DVB card installation. Now most of them are recognized and added by system automatically.
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Web Orbiter 2.0 for LinuxMCE 0810

LinuxMCE Web Orbiter 2.0

LinuxMCE development team recently announced a new version of its Web Orbiter. A new Web Orbiter 2.0 is based on Ajax technology and offers more convenient way to control system from the web browser. The previous version refreshed page every couple of minutes to display updated statuses of devices. Using Ajax technology allows update the changed only elements without refreshing the page.

The new Web Orbiter 2.0 works on any PC with web browser Firefox, Opera, Chrome, Midori or IE. Also it supports mobile browser versions such OperaMini, OperaMobile 10 and S60 browser. So, using it you can setup iPhone, iPad (see the photo above – custom version of UI1) or some another smartphone or webpad as LinuxMCE control panel just adjusting the size of the Orbiter via admin site.

You can get the Web Orbiter 2.0 with the latest update of LinuxMCE 0810.

Budget multi-room audio system based on LinuxMCE

Base LinuxMCE distribution includes Sqeezebox Control Center aka SlimServer. It allows to build multi-room audio system very easy. But Squeezeboxes are not so cheap as we’d like. So, Dianemo developers (company which offers commercial installations of LinuxMCE and returns back to community a lot of new and fixed functionality) implemented support of several sound cards (including USB ones) on one core or media director. Each card has one Squeezeslave (software implementation of Squeezebox) associated with it. As result using cheap USB sound cards you can build multi-room audio system.

Code to implement SoftAudio feature will be added to the project repository soon. So, hope we’ll have it in some new 0810 update next month.

LinuxMCE and iPhone

LinuxMCE iPhone Remote

Almost all well-known produces of hardware and software for home automation and entertainment area have iPhone/iPod Touch application to control their devices and systems. LinuxMCE doesn’t provide such possibility yet. But that situation is going to change soon. For example, it’s already ready basic web Orbiter adopted for Apple devices – iOrbiter. It’s based on iPhone User Interface Framework iUI. I tested it with my 0710 installation (see a few screenshots here). It works fast, provides basic functionality to search and play media and run scenarios. I’m sure it’ll be extended soon.

Another way to control LinuxMCE from iPhone will be LMCE Remote. It’s native iPhone application (see image above). As wiki page describes the it’s almost ready. Source code should be in the LinuxMCE repository and the application will be available via App Store and LinuxMCE site (I guess). So, when it happens many existing users will be happy as well as new ones will get a good opportunity to try LinuxMCE.

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