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Old 01-22-2018, 11:16 AM   #1
Media player
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Linux Mint as a media player for directv now Hulu and Netflix


Ok so here it goes. My mother just infomred me she intends to get rid of her old Compaq cpu. It has 6GB of ram. I don't want to throw it away. I'm a computer enthusiast but not an expert. I like to play around and can fix almost anything and coding and things like this do not scare me, again I'm not expert. I do have some schooling but my cpu use is mainly recreational. I love them. Anyway I've decided yo try and repurpose this machine (and it's 6GB ram) by turning it into a strict media player. I cut the cord years ago. I use Hulu Direct tv Now and Netflix mainly.

Ok so here is my question. If I take windows off entirely and replace it with linux mint bc it's a older machine would I then be able to revitalize it to run these 3 services efficiently? I'm aware that due to DRM there is likely to be some tinkering with user-agent settings and what not but that's fine. I'm wondering if using linux mint will allow me to get the most out of that ram and with the user-agent settings would the video play smoothly or would it be clunky? Is it worth putting linux on or just restoring windows to factory settings?
 
Old 01-22-2018, 01:12 PM   #2
Rickkkk
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Hi Media_player.

Welcome to LQ.

I can't comment re: Hulu nor Direct TV Now (never used them), but I can confirm that Netflix will work with the appropriate web browser and the widevine package ( I use chromium on Arch and it works as expected).

I would imagine that it should be fairly simple to get the other 2 services to function as well - I'm sure other members will chime in with confirmation.

Cheers !
 
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Old 01-22-2018, 01:13 PM   #3
rtmistler
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My advice is that you search for some write-ups on the web where people have done this and documented their travails. I've seen a few over the years. And what I can say is that most of them are extremely detailed, because it is a pretty detailed topic. From there you can get a handle on whether or not one distribution over another seems any better or worse, as well as understand the extra software you'll need to grab in order to get these tasks done and get it all set up. You may find that one or two certain distributions are more ready to be configured this way, over a normal desktop distribution.

I've previously considered doing this and found some write-ups for things like a Beagle Bone Black or Raspberry Pi. I just never allocated the time to devote for this type of project. Maybe others on the forums have direct experiences they can share.
 
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Old 01-22-2018, 02:22 PM   #4
Media player
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Thanks RT funny you mentioned a raspberry pi bc I bought one for my son to turn into a retro gaming system and that is what got me into linux. I'm a very new user but I've already seen how much better it is and will be the more i learn. I compare it to driving a stick where ad Microsoft is a automatic. More control if that makes sense
 
Old 01-22-2018, 06:32 PM   #5
AwesomeMachine
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I would check out mythtv. If I could have more info on the hardware, it might help me determine if it's adequate to stream full resolution HDTV.
 
Old 01-22-2018, 08:35 PM   #6
hydrurga
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Just a note that Netflix works fine for me on a Linux Mint 18.3 MATE setup through Google Chrome with no need for a separate widevine package.
 
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Old 01-22-2018, 08:47 PM   #7
Rickkkk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hydrurga View Post
Just a note that Netflix works fine for me on a Linux Mint 18.3 MATE setup through Google Chrome with no need for a separate widevine package.
Quite right, hydrurga - Chrome (the Google officially supported version) comes with widevine functionality included. Open source chromium requires it as an add-on.

Cheers !
 
Old 02-06-2018, 09:57 AM   #8
Pyrotech72
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I say take the free machine, mass murder whatever version of windows is on it, and install your favorite flavor Linux. Play with the machine and learn on it. Later you can decide if it's Not Enough Computer.
 
Old 02-06-2018, 04:08 PM   #9
jefro
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I tend to suggest people keep windows if they wish to later use it but..

Pretty sure I used to use Directv now on linux. It would be easy to run a VM of your test to see if it will work.
 
Old 02-06-2018, 04:26 PM   #10
soveda
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What is the processor and how old is the machine?
 
Old 02-06-2018, 04:33 PM   #11
Pyrotech72
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LiveCD

Quote:
Originally Posted by jefro View Post
I tend to suggest people keep windows if they wish to later use it but..

Pretty sure I used to use Directv now on linux. It would be easy to run a VM of your test to see if it will work.
Yeah, that would work too. I simply spewed my first thought earlier, but there's a lot of learning one could accomplish with windows. Since he said it was a Compaq, and HP bought Compaq in 2002, I assume it's at least that old.

Another thought is to boot a live USB or liveCD. That way, nothing has to be done to the original installation. Keep in mind that it can give you an artificially slow machine unless it loads the whole live media into a RAM disk.
 
  


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