How to: BBC iPlayer in Windows 7 Media Center [UK]

At Neowin we love Windows 7 applications. We especially love them when they are free and made by talented developers in their spare time.

BBC iPlayer in Windows 7 Media Center looks like the real thing, in fact you could mistake it for being an official add-in made by the BBC except it's made by a third-party developer who "spent the weekend working on some nicer iplayer plugins" for themselves. The developer, nicknamed "ddfczm", posted a download link and information over at The Australian Media Center Community.

The add-in allows you to browse through the various iPlayer content available by highlights, channels, categories and search. Video is streamed from the WMV versions that the BBC supplies. The application also works using a Media Center extender such as the Xbox 360.

One forum commenter notes if you are having issues getting the add-in working to try creating a link to:

%windir%\ehome\ehshell.exe /entrypoint:{799df54e-abd6-41cd-a99f-45367b790bb5}\{89d083d5-f12d-4d63-836c-7cfff56774dd}

Update: If the installer fails to add the icon to extras then you can use Media Center Studio (free) to add it back in. Just launch the app and go to the Start Menu tab, at the bottom extend the Entry Points drop down and then you can drag and drop iPlayer to where you need it to be. This will also ensure the icon is shown on Media Center extenders like the Xbox 360.

This is the second Windows 7 focussed application Neowin has featured in recent months. The first was a Gmail notifier application created by a Neowin member to provide Gmail notifications in the Windows 7 taskbar.

Download: BBC iPlayer Windows 7 Media Center Alpha 1.1

Thanks to Scott for the news tip

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40 Comments

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I can only get it to work with the shortcut. No direct link appears from within the media centre. Any advice?

Download the file from Australia and install (save the .msi on your desktop and then click the .msi file) connect to the web site below to install the license (how anyone found this I don't know !) and click to install, you'll find that the stream from BBC iPlayer will now work under W7 if you click on a proagram on iPlayer
http://drmlicense.one.microsoft.com/Indivsite/en/indivit.asp
Google for Media Center Studio and download and install. Click Start Menu on the left hand side, click the maximise button and then in the left hand bottom corner click the entry points button, you'll see an iPlayer icon, drag this up to the green plus sign next to extras library (I used the left one). Close Media Center Studio and save changes, open media player and iPlayer appears next to extras. It works a treat !!

i went on the microsoft site to upgrade the security thing but the "upgrade" buttons greyed out so im not sure what to do

chenks on 27 Nov 2009 - 10:35
how do you use media center studio to add it?
having never used it before, i have no idea what is required.

You need to add it from the entry points (maybe hidden at the bottom of the screen), Just drag it to where you want it

J400uk on 27 Nov 2009 - 11:11
Do you get live TV streaming with this one?

No

Looks really good. And it works

If you can run %windir%\ehome\ehshell.exe /entrypoint:{799df54e-abd6-41cd-a99f-45367b790bb5}\{89d083d5-f12d-4d63-836c-7cfff56774dd} and it opens the app correctly, then you can use 'Media Center Studio' to get it to show up and put it in the TV ribbon.

But that is the best news

Look good and interesting but you must have a VPN in order to see content if outside the UK. I am assuming that this is the same with HULU.

hmm well i installed this and it showed up perfectly fine in media center but nothing plays at all ( im in the UK) so i can't think what the problem might be , even tried usin the shortcut method and still nothing wants to play :\

I will love Radio Stations, at least BBC Radio 1 :)
I live outside UK, but I think that Radio Stations could be accessed as I can do from the web.

The UI of the App is horrible, im not saying I could do any better it doesn̢۪t really integrate with Media Centre that well and was pretty buggy when I used it (had trouble going full screen, useless for a media pc with no mouse)

I would prefer something like this: http://code.google.com/p/xbmc-iplayer/ that intergrates with the app its designed for and just works.

That̢۪s what I hope the app in the news article will do too :)

Nothing pops up in Media Center unless you use that shortcut, but you'll also find that the Xbox 360 won't see it as well.

Won't work on my xbox, as it doesn't show up in the extras library.
Have to use the shortcut workaround to get it to start on my PC, can't do that on an xbox :/
Hope they get it sorted, will be checking the forum for any updates or fixes.

I've also got a feeling that the BBC might block it in the future.

Because of the open-ness of the stream for iPhone, etc it's very hard to stop these sort of plugins which use these streams

acnpt said,
Won't work on my xbox, as it doesn't show up in the extras library.
Have to use the shortcut workaround to get it to start on my PC, can't do that on an xbox :/
Hope they get it sorted, will be checking the forum for any updates or fixes.

I've also got a feeling that the BBC might block it in the future.


Works fine on my 360 via Windows 7 x64 Home Premium.
Didn't show up in either the local or extender Media Centre at first, but Media Centre Studio (in the article) fixed that and it's all working fine.

Works great! :-)

True dat. Sky are pretty good, I've actually been kicked off BT and Tiscali broadband (I was on their packages before they brought in the "fair" use policies), but Sky haven't even sent me a complaint letter yet. I also hear that Be Broadband either have no limit or a very reasonable one.

There's really no reason to let yourself get screwed on internet packages in the UK.

if ur in the south you can probably get Be broadband, that has no limits at all and a "very fair usage policy" which I haven't been able to breech despite downloading huge amounts, and they don't use traffic shaping.