Possible to port WMC from Win10 Preview builds to Final?

Discussion of getting WMC to work on Windows 10 (unsupported)
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DavidinCT

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Re: Possible to port WMC from Win10 Preview builds to Final?

#41

Post by DavidinCT » Tue May 12, 2015 12:30 am

dkrom wrote:
DavidinCT wrote:
mdavej wrote:Seriously though, I appreciate the effort so far and hope you can pull it off eventually. But I have yet to hear any good reasons why anyone would "upgrade" a perfectly good WMC system to Win 10. What feature of Win 10 is so compelling that it's worth losing WMC itself? From what I've seen, you sort of get the start menu back, which we've already had since the beginning with 3rd party apps, and it looks a little different. What other features trump WMC? Is it really just the "shiny" obsession as Richard says, or is there actually some logical reason that Win 10 and only Win 10 will satisfy your needs.
Thanks but, for a reason for me, I use WMC on my gaming computer with shared tuners. I NEED to go to Windows 10 because DirectX 12 will not be supported on Windows 7 or 8.1... and very important to gaming.

So, with a shared tuner, I can watch live tv and shared recordings, I can watch all my recorded shows too...

How's that for a reason ? :)
What about running Win 7 or 8 in a VM for Media Center while running Win 10 as the main system? I was able to get MCE2005 running on a VM and it even connected to a tuner where I could watch recorded TV. Live TV wouldn't work since my tuner was too old for the machine I was testing it on.
Nah, VM's don't allow recorded shows to work very well...

[Moderator note: off topic posts in this thread have been removed]
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#42

Post by GnatGoSplat » Tue May 12, 2015 4:53 pm

DavidinCT wrote:I can officially confirm that the hack above does install with Windows Media Center on build 10074 (newest), so it is in the ISO. This was a CLEAN install, No upgrade, a Blank VM hard drive...
Just curious, but you said WMC can install in 10074? Does it work when installed properly?

I have seen Windows 8.1 ISOs with Media Center pre-installed with no need to enter a WMC product key. Activation is still required, but it works fine through the grace period. I wonder how WMC was packaged with Windows 8.1, and if it's possible to package it with Win10 similarly?

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#43

Post by DavidinCT » Wed May 13, 2015 3:11 am

GnatGoSplat wrote:
DavidinCT wrote:I can officially confirm that the hack above does install with Windows Media Center on build 10074 (newest), so it is in the ISO. This was a CLEAN install, No upgrade, a Blank VM hard drive...
Just curious, but you said WMC can install in 10074? Does it work when installed properly?

I have seen Windows 8.1 ISOs with Media Center pre-installed with no need to enter a WMC product key. Activation is still required, but it works fine through the grace period. I wonder how WMC was packaged with Windows 8.1, and if it's possible to package it with Win10 similarly?
It installed on 10074 and I was able to run it, It does work but, I have not tested any tuners or anything with it. One thing to note besides the activation issue, is Windows 10 is REALLY buggy, some things don't work right and there was a few oddball crashes here and there.

Right now, with my LEGAL Win 8.1 /WMC, it will not activate. I guess I could find one of those activator programs (hacking tools) and see if that works. Like I said, it's just the 8.1 version, from my 10 min I went over it with every menu and settings for it, there is NO changes from 8.1's version. If your expecting new features or even bug fixes, I think you will be very disappointed. And this is not the RTM so things that work now, might not work later.

As for WMC added into 8.1 package, I would be it's slipstreamed... (like if you download a say, Windows 8.1 ISO with all updates to today, it's called slipstreamed).

The Problem is, and it's the problem I am running in to this problem, When WMC runs, it checks to see if it's allowed to run (Windows kernel) if not, it should show the same error that I am getting now. The ONLY way we might be able to get this to work (besides a WMC key), if someone can re-compile the eshell.exe and remove the "check" (I am assuming that is the file that is causing the problem) we should be able to buy pass this check and we can move forward on this project.

So, EVEN if we could get it "slipstreamed" onto the disc and manage to get it installed, We still have the Check going on and that would give the same error that I am getting now.

At this point, I really believe I have enough installed in my VM (the VM I was trying to import it into) to RUN WMC but, due to this security error, I have hit a brick wall.

Does that answer the question ?
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#44

Post by GnatGoSplat » Wed May 13, 2015 2:04 pm

Yes, what I'm wondering though, is since it does work through the grace period, perhaps one of those KMS activators is an option. I would think it should be okay, ethically anyway, to use an activator if you already own a legitimate Windows license. So I wonder if slipstreaming WMC into Win10, then activating with an activator might do the trick? On the other hand, I don't really know how those activators work. Do they do more than just reset the grace period every boot? If they do more, they may need to be coded to specifically support Win10.

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#45

Post by sbaeder » Wed May 13, 2015 4:19 pm

remember, this is "LICENSED" software. Things that may "technically" possible (like changing the code to bypass a license check) would most likely be in violation of the "license"...

Still not sure what the "fuss" is all about. MS decided long ago to basically "Kill" WMC. Let it "rest in peace". Stick with what you have and/or move on.

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#46

Post by DavidinCT » Wed May 13, 2015 6:48 pm

GnatGoSplat wrote:Yes, what I'm wondering though, is since it does work through the grace period, perhaps one of those KMS activators is an option. I would think it should be okay, ethically anyway, to use an activator if you already own a legitimate Windows license. So I wonder if slipstreaming WMC into Win10, then activating with an activator might do the trick? On the other hand, I don't really know how those activators work. Do they do more than just reset the grace period every boot? If they do more, they may need to be coded to specifically support Win10.
Well, we are a time off from the RTM, and If we were able to slipstream it in and use an activator (even if that will work), it wont get any updates or anything. Also as MS said that WMC is not coming as part of Windows 10, I bet they will remove the "ehome" files from Windows 10. In that case we might not be able to do anything on the RTM, unless we can pull from a preview build. This aspect I am not really good with. It's why I posted here about it to see if anyone has input, **IF** this is actually possible.

I'll d/l one of those KMS things tonight, JUST to try as a test.
sbaeder wrote:remember, this is "LICENSED" software. Things that may "technically" possible (like changing the code to bypass a license check) would most likely be in violation of the "license"...

Still not sure what the "fuss" is all about. MS decided long ago to basically "Kill" WMC. Let it "rest in peace". Stick with what you have and/or move on.
Yes, you are right and I would LOVE to legally pay for WMC on Windows 10. Sign me up Microsoft, TAKE MY MONEY, make it at least an option like it was for Windows 8.1.

I still use WMC every day, sure it's a no longer supported on the aspect of development but, it is still a supported product, if you had an issue and you were still under MS's support Windows (newer license of Windows 8.1) they would support you on it. So being Dead, no it's not, it still works, the only things that do not work are Internet TV (hidden now anyway) and the Sports hub, everything else works just like when it was in production.

Like it was said above, I need to go to Windows 10 for gaming (directx 12) but, I use WMC on my office machine/gaming machine to watch live tv with shared tuners an shared recorded shows (non DRMed ones). I lose a major feature of my PC by moving to WIndows 10 and from the thoughts on this site about it, I don't think I am the only one.

that is my motivation for this project, just to see if it IS actually possible but, with out really screwing with activation, don't think it is actually possible at this point.

" Let it "rest in peace" " My one word answer to this is "NO". If you don't use it and don't like it, please don't read this thread any more. Problem, solution ...
Last edited by DavidinCT on Wed May 13, 2015 6:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#47

Post by spanner » Wed May 13, 2015 6:49 pm

sbaeder wrote:Still not sure what the "fuss" is all about. MS decided long ago to basically "Kill" WMC. Let it "rest in peace". Stick with what you have and/or move on.
One of the things I have enjoyed most over the years with WMC is following the projects that were trying to get something to work that wasn't native. all the different Netflix, before the official version, Pandora, Amazon prime, Boxee, bluray playback, and so many others. Some worked, some worked but not so well. It all made for a rich experience for me and my WMC. Mine does still work and will for some time to come, but if someone or a group want to put their time in and make this work in win 10 I say Thank you and go for it.

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#48

Post by GnatGoSplat » Thu May 14, 2015 3:09 pm

DavidinCT wrote:" Let it "rest in peace" " My one word answer to this is "NO". If you don't use it and don't like it, please don't read this thread any more. Problem, solution ...
My sentiments exactly. :thumbup:

I love WMC and haven't found anything I like better, so if there's a way to continue using it, I'll do it. Microsoft killing it off isn't going to stop me from using something I like. They killed off Sidebar gadgets too, which I loved on my desktop machine, so I found ways to run it in Win 8.1 and now Win 10TP, and won't stop using it until the workarounds no longer work.

I personally don't have any good reason to want WMC in Windows 10. My HTPCs are strictly HTPCs with no other use and I don't use WMC on my desktop machines. I'd like to use WMC in Windows 10 "just because". I don't have to, I don't need to, I just want to. I like having the latest OS, just to know I have the latest OS.

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#49

Post by DavidinCT » Fri May 15, 2015 1:57 pm

OK, I want to continue this project but at a brick wall, I need some help for someone with the skills.

When Windows Media Center runs, it does a check against the Windows kernel to see if it's authorized to run. This is the problem and till we figure out a work-around for this problem. This project can not go on.

SO, if someone has the skills, can someone patch a eshell.exe to stop this check, maybe one from WIndows 7 and WIndows 8/8.1 ?

When it comes down to WMC, only features were removed from 8, but, not sure if the eshell.exe is the same exact version number in both (meaning other files were changed to disable these features).

I really hate to go down this road but, for at least testing at this point, I would like to find out if this is EVEN possible.
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#50

Post by newfiend » Fri May 15, 2015 3:58 pm

You could try contacting Mikinho.. He may be able to help.
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#51

Post by DavidinCT » Mon May 18, 2015 5:08 pm

newfiend wrote:You could try contacting Mikinho.. He may be able to help.
newfiend
Might be an option to try, not sure if he can do the patching of current apps, never mind it could be breaking laws so he might not be willing to do it...
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#52

Post by DavidinCT » Thu May 21, 2015 3:25 pm

For those following this, Installed Build 10122, the eHome files are in the Windows\winSxS folder.

So, it is still there, now how to install it, is another question...
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#53

Post by DanB_DE » Thu May 21, 2015 5:04 pm

DavidinCT wrote:OK, I want to continue this project but at a brick wall, I need some help for someone with the skills.

When Windows Media Center runs, it does a check against the Windows kernel to see if it's authorized to run. This is the problem and till we figure out a work-around for this problem. This project can not go on.

SO, if someone has the skills, can someone patch a eshell.exe to stop this check, maybe one from WIndows 7 and WIndows 8/8.1 ?
Do we know for sure that ehshell.exe is doing this check ? I ask because the error message you mention points to group policy.
but i also know you checked everything on this gp topic.

2 or 3 years ago i was able to edit ehshell.dll. (using Red Gate’s Reflector and Reflexil plugin)
this was and is my only experience editing .net binarys.
it was very very time consuming. I don’t know if the same steps would work with ehshell.exe if there is the check.
Anyway this will be very time-consuming.

Question:

In your test vm, are there any MC related services running already ?

I really respect your work on this topic !!

DanB
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#54

Post by DavidinCT » Fri May 22, 2015 5:25 pm

DanB_DE wrote:
DavidinCT wrote:OK, I want to continue this project but at a brick wall, I need some help for someone with the skills.

When Windows Media Center runs, it does a check against the Windows kernel to see if it's authorized to run. This is the problem and till we figure out a work-around for this problem. This project can not go on.

SO, if someone has the skills, can someone patch a eshell.exe to stop this check, maybe one from WIndows 7 and WIndows 8/8.1 ?
Do we know for sure that ehshell.exe is doing this check ? I ask because the error message you mention points to group policy.
but i also know you checked everything on this gp topic.

2 or 3 years ago i was able to edit ehshell.dll. (using Red Gate’s Reflector and Reflexil plugin)
this was and is my only experience editing .net binarys.
it was very very time consuming. I don’t know if the same steps would work with ehshell.exe if there is the check.
Anyway this will be very time-consuming.

Question:

In your test vm, are there any MC related services running already ?

I really respect your work on this topic !!

DanB
#
Look back a page or 2, I posted a crash log (when I was trying to manually move WMC over), it shows the order of loading on the crash, and you can see right after eshell.exe it step 2 was the kernel. This is where I got this from. It very well could be a DLL but, at this point I am assuming and I don't know 100%...

I manually put the services in (the 3 services for WMC) but, they will not start. This I am assuming these services are doing the same check to confirm they are allowed to run, so I bet it's all tied into the one file it's does it's check against.

Did you edit the DLL for Windows 7 or Windows 8 ? If you can send that copy over to me (my user name @Hotmail.com) and I'll drop it right in my Windows 10 build and see if that does anything to help here.

I would almost bet a large amount of cash, that almost all of the files in WMC on Windows 7 and Windows 8 are exact, there might be an extra DLL someplace that they call to because of the change of the few options in the shell (start with Windows and always on top, that just changes registry settings anyway).

As for GP, I checked everything, GPedit as well as each registry setting for it, it should run but, something is blocking it and according to what I read, WMC does a check against the kernel to see if it's authorized to run, this is where I think I am hitting this road block.

I passionately want to continue this project but, with the security errors, I have hit a brick wall and cant go on.

I have 2 VMs sitting here ready to go, I would update them both to 10122 to try again.
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#55

Post by Shark007 » Fri May 22, 2015 10:35 pm

To follow up on the information I posted HERE (with an updated image from today) and HERE (with very important info)
I suggest your next step is to use google with the search term, Dism /Capture-CustomImage
I have not attempted this myself, but the research I did looked promising.
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#56

Post by Ed  » Sat May 23, 2015 1:31 am

That would still knock out activation and prevent any Windows updates, which he wants to avoid.

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#57

Post by makryger » Sat May 23, 2015 1:44 am

DavidinCT wrote: When Windows Media Center runs, it does a check against the Windows kernel to see if it's authorized to run. This is the problem and till we figure out a work-around for this problem. SO, if someone has the skills, can someone patch a eshell.exe to stop this check, maybe one from WIndows 7 and WIndows 8/8.1 ?
This is the same issue I hit a wall against when trying to create Xtender-Salad... if you ever figure it out, the key to multiple extenders is in there too!
My Channel Logos XL: Get your Guide looking good! ~~~~ TunerSalad: Increase the 4-tuner limit in 7MC

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#58

Post by DavidinCT » Sat May 23, 2015 1:15 pm

Shark007 wrote:To follow up on the information I posted HERE (with an updated image from today) and HERE (with very important info)
I suggest your next step is to use google with the search term, Dism /Capture-CustomImage
I have not attempted this myself, but the research I did looked promising.
As said, that would kick off Activation and stop updates. I did follow your post on how to create a custom ISO, this is kind of what started this project, Thanks for that !

If we could deploy the packages ripped with custom edited files, that might be a great way to do it as, this would restore all settings, services, etc. in one "script". Then we would have to buy pass the setting in windows to only install signed packages. The biggest problem is this Kernel check. If we can figure out how to by-pass this, this is something I would love to attempt. Seems like more problems, ugh..

The trick here would be installing it in a current system, not creating a bootable image.
makryger wrote: This is the same issue I hit a wall against when trying to create Xtender-Salad... if you ever figure it out, the key to multiple extenders is in there too!
Nice info, thanks. Unfortunately, I am not a developer, so the patching aspect might be out of my hands. I think we have a solid lead but, not 100% sure at this point.

Oh, well...the quest goes on for WMC in Windows 10... Wish Microsoft would just give it to us and call it a day.
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#59

Post by DanB_DE » Sat May 23, 2015 2:50 pm

#[/quote]

Did you edit the DLL for Windows 7 or Windows 8 ? If you can send that copy over to me (my user name @Hotmail.com) and I'll drop it right in my Windows 10 build and see if that does anything to help here.

[/quote]

I was editing a DLL from Windows Embedded Standard 7. At this time there was a special Media Center Build for OEM´s. But i didn’t eliminate any check, i was entering / changing entry points
for mcml pages. so I could start my own plugin from the native settings page from mc. this was working.

Time is my problem at the moment. But right now i am installing Build 10122 to have a look. i have some points i want to check. I will report back my findings.

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#60

Post by DavidinCT » Sat May 23, 2015 4:13 pm

DanB_DE wrote: I was editing a DLL from Windows Embedded Standard 7. At this time there was a special Media Center Build for OEM´s. But i didn’t eliminate any check, i was entering / changing entry points
for mcml pages. so I could start my own plugin from the native settings page from mc. this was working.

Time is my problem at the moment. But right now i am installing Build 10122 to have a look. i have some points i want to check. I will report back my findings.
Never got the chance to play with Windows Embedded with WMC, would of loved to play with that a while ago.

I hear ya on the time thing, I never have the time to get anything done, this included, I try to fit this playing around on weekends when I finally sit down from other stuff.

Any info you can help with would be appreciated here for the good of all WMC fans...
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