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Guides & Tutorials

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In these areas of the blog, you will find our most detailed tutorials with all the secrets to unlocking the full potential of your HTPC, as well as configuring and tweaking all the software necessary in simple, easy to use step-by-step illustrated guides.

The Stats: 186 Guides, over 155,000 Words, over 5,000 Pictures


(Guides are illustrated and step-by-step. Bullet points are guides for each topic.)


Introduction to Assassin HTPC

Introduction to Assassin HTPC and Eliminating Cable Bills Forever:

  • Buy or Build an HTPC?
  • Tips for Better Experience.
  • Watching Live TV
  • Utilizing Streaming Services
  • Using the Best Add-ons
  • Guide to using Torrents and Usenets
  • Eliminating your DVR by automatically downloading content
  • Accessing Live Cable TV and Premium Network Sports
  • Using a VPN for Privacy and Protection.


Hardware, Bios, and System Setup Guides

Hardware Guide: Everything you need to know about building or buying an HTPC.

  • What to Expect
  • The Basics
  • Software Overview
  • Front End Software
  • Codec Summary 
  • Antivirus, Antimalware, Antispyware Software
  • Hardware Overview
  • System Builds
  • System Components
  • Mini Builds
  • “Assassin HTPC” NewEgg Build Lists

Bios & Windows: BIOS and Windows Setup: Preparing Your HTPC After Hardware Construction

  • Configuring Bios
  • Installing Windows 7
  • Install Windows from a USB (or create a Windows DVD)
  • Windows Driver Installation
  • Adding a Second Hard Drive (or a new hard drive if you are adding one)
  • Installing an Anti-Virus Program
  • Connecting Your HTPC to your HDTV Correctly
  • Creating a System Repair Disc
  • Creating a System Image
  • Restoring from a System Image
  • Power Settings for the HTPC

WMC and Media Browser Guides (and others)

WMC & MB Setup: WMC and Media Browser Setup

  • Software Required and Installation Guide Overview / Preparing “The Engine”
  • Installing and Setting up Shark007 Codec Pack
  • Setting Up Windows Media Center
  • Preparing “The Appearance”
  • General Setup for Mediabrowser Folder Structure
  • Preparing “The Navigation System”
  • Updating Your Library and Viewing Mediabrowser
  • Enabling Subtitle Control
  • Toggling Subtitles On and Off
  • Changing Audio Streams in WMC
  • Switching the Default Audio Device Automatically in WMC
  • Testing Your HD Audio Setup
  • Mounting and Playing an iso File

WMC Appearance: WMC Appearance Guide

  • Changing the Look of Media Browser
  • Changing the Look of WMC
  • Creating and Changing a Custom WMC Theme
  • Media Center Themer for WMC
  • Pearl Theme Appearance Guide
  • Maelstrom Appearance Guide
  • snef’s Media Browser Screen Backdrop Trick
  • Media Browser Boxed Set Guide

WMC Plugins: WMC and Media Browser Plug-Ins

  • Adding Amazon Instant Video to WMC
  • Adding Hulu to WMC
  • Adding Zinc.TV to WMC
  • Adding Boxee to WMC
  • Adding ESPN3 to WMC
  • Adding Netflix to WMC
  • Adding Pandora to WMC (Version 1)
  • Adding Pandora to WMC (Version 2)
  • Adding Radiotime to WMC
  • Adding, Downloading and Watching Movie Trailers in Media Browser
  • Basics of Game Emulation in Media Browser
  • Metadata and Artwork for Your Games
  • Media Browser Remote: Controlling Media Browser From Your Tablet or Phone
  • Using a PS3 as a Media Extender
  • Using a XBOX 360 as a WMC Extender

WMC Live TV: Live TV and Recording Management in WMC

  • Adding a TV Tuner Device
  • Adding TV Channel Logos to WMC
  • Recording Live TV in WMC
  • Starting WMC in Live TV Mode
  • Install, Setup and Integration in WMC for the HD Homerun
  • Transcoding to a Smaller File Size and Removing Commercials Automatically from Recorded TV (Option 1)
  • Transcoding to a Smaller File Size and Removing Commercials Automatically from Recorded TV (Option 2)
  • Recorded TV: Transcode to a Smaller File Size, Remove Commercials, Download Artwork and Refresh Media Browser all Automatically (Option 3)
  • MC-TVConverter for Recordings (Option 4)
  • Increasing Replay and Pause Buffer Duration in WMC
  • Using the Ceton Companion App

XBMC Guides

XBMC Setup

  • Introduction to XBMC and Installation Option 1
  • Setting Up XBMC
  • Adding Movies to XBMC
  • Adding TV Shows to XBMC
  • Changing the Information Screen in XBMC
  • Playback and General Controls
  • Creating and Displaying Genre Movie Folders
  • Installing Your First Skin: Aeon MQ3
  • Enabling 20+ More Skins in XBMC
  • Listing Movies as Collections

XBMC Premium

Table of Guides:

  • Installing, Enabling and Accessing Add-Ons in XBMC
  • Adding HULU, ESPN, Amazon Prime, and Yahoo Music Videos
  • Building and Using a YouTube Library
  • Adding Pandora to XBMC
  • Sports Devil Plug-In for Live Sports
  • The Constellation XBMC App
  • Using Commander to Control XBMC
  • Official XBMC Remote App
  • XBMC Remote for Android
  • Yatse Remote for XBMC
  • Using a WMC Remote to Launch and Control XBMC
  • Using Flirc With XBMC
  • Jailbreak and Install XBMC on an Untethered AppleTV2

Plex Media Center


  • Plex Server for Your HTPC
  • Installing Plex Media Center
  • Installing the Plex App For Mobile Devices
  • Installing the PlexAeon Skin
  • Installing Skins with Preen
  • myPlex Media Queue
  • Sharing myPlex Servers and Media

JRiver Guides

JRiver Setup

  • Setting Up JRiver
  • Playback Settings
  • The Theater View Inteface
  • Configuring the Weather
  • Adding a 3rd Party Skin to Change the Look of JRiver
  • Gizmo Tablet Control (HTPC Setup)
  • Gizmo Tablet Control (Tablet Setup)
  • Gizmo Tablet Control (Using Gizmo)

JRiver Audiophile

  • Introduction to the Audiophile HTPC
  • Configuring Windows for JRiver (Audiophile)
  • Configuring the JRiver Media Center Audio (Audiophile)
  • Configuring Other Audio Options (Audiophile)
  • Configuring JRiver for Surround Sound (Audiophile)
  • Ripping Audio CDs and Bluray Discs (Audiophile)
  • Setting Up Multiple Zones (Audiophile)
  • Other JRiver Tips (Audiophile)
  • Multi-Room Listening and Viewing with “Satellite” Computers (Audiophile)

Ripping, Downloading, and Miscellaneous


  • Makemkv Made Even Easier
  • Adding Auto Rip n Compress to WMC
  • Using Handbrake to Shrink or Change Your HD Files
  • Using Handbrake and Preserving HD Audio
  • Using StaxRip and Preserving HD Audio
  • Blurip For Ripping MKVs
  • Large Batch Auto Renaming Using The Renamer


  • Downloading and Adding Torrent Files to Your HTPC
  • Using VPN for Internet Protection
  • Usenet and Sickbeard for HTPC (Part 1)
  • Usenet and Sickbeard for HTPC (Part 2)
  • TED for the HTPC


  • Harmony One for the HTPC
  • Plex Server For Your HTPC
  • Accessing Your Media From Anywhere in the World Using Plex Server
  • Remote Potato Setup (Part 1)
  • Remote Potato Setup (Part 2)
  • Adding Music in Media Browser
  • Adding Backdrops Automatically to Music in Media Browser
  • Foobar2000 for the HTPC
  • Squeezeplay with Tablet Control for Music and Internet Radio Playback (with Sqeezeslave)
  • Installing and Using CrashPlan
  • CrashPlan Mobile App

Beta & Advanced Area

Beta & Advanced 

  • Launching MPC-HC from Mediabrowser
  • Enabling LAV + Madvr + MPC-HC
  • Adding CUVID for NVidia Cards
  • Changing the DirectShow Filters in Windows 7
  • XBMC Option 2: HD Audio Bitstreaming for XBMC (Option 2)
  • XBMC Option 3: HD Audio Bitstreaming for XBMC (Option 3)
  • XBMC Option 4: HD Audio Bitstreaming for XBMC (Option 4)
  • Media Browser 3: Media Browser Server

Server (NAS) Guides

Hardware and Bios

  • Server Overview and My Thoughts for HTPC
  • Hardware Overview
  • Hardware Components
  • Intel NIC Card (Optional)
  • Optical Drive (Optional)
  • SATA Controller Card (Optional)
  • Expansion Bays (Optional)
  • Cables
  • Case Fans
  • Mini-ITX Server
  • Bios

Windows Home Server 2011

  • Windows Home Server 2011 Installation
  • WHS Updates
  • Installing Hard Drives in WHS
  • Controlling WHS From a Networked Computer
  • Installing the Intel Integrated NIC (Optional)
  • Anti-Virus for WHS 2011
  • Add Your Server to Your Homegroup
  • Power Options
  • Connecting Client PCs with Computer Connector
  • WHS 2011 Dashboard
  • Remote Web Access


  • FlexRaid Overview
  • Installing FlexRaid
  • FlexRaid Initial Configuration
  • FlexRaid Scheduler
  • E-mail Notification in FlexRaid
  • Checking the Log in FlexRaid
  • Creating Network Shares in FlexRaid
  • Installing FlexRaid Updates
  • Manually Check Your Array
  • Adding a Drive to Your FlexRaid Array
  • Replacing a Failed or Failing Hard Drive in FlexRaid


  • Introduction to Unraid
  • Preparing Your Flash Drive
  • Verifying and Accessing Unraid From a PC
  • Assigning Disks in Unraid
  • Building the Parity in Unraid
  • Checking the Parity Drive
  • Setting Up the Network
  • Share Settings
  • Export Settings


  • Introduction to SnapRAID
  • SnapRAID Installation
  • Installing the GUI
  • Setting Up Your Drives
  • Scheduling

Crash Plan

  • Installing and Using CrashPlan
  • CrashPlan Mobile App


  • Enabling 20+ More Skins in XBMC
  • Using and Enabling Theme Packs
  • Adding CUVID for NVidia Cards
  • Changing the DirectShow Filters in Windows 7
  • XBMC Option 2: HD Audio Bitstreaming for XBMC (Option 2)
  • XBMC Option 3: HD Audio Bitstreaming for XBMC (Option 3)
  • XBMC Option 4: HD Audio Bitstreaming for XBMC (Option 4)
©Copyright 2014 by AssassinHTPC. All rights reserved. This guide and its contents are copyrighted by AssassinHTPC.
This may be used for personal use by the purchaser only; users are forbidden to reproduce, republish, redistribute or resell material from this guide without the permission of AssassinHTPC.


Stephen Weakley

I haven’t been able to find a good solution for playing 3D movies on WMC. Is this something you plan to delve into in the near future?


Sure! We will add it to our list! You can always launch an external application (which we will show) by using Media Center Studio (which is very finicky). Write to to request a guide!

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