[mythtv-users] Thin client frontend

Brian Wood beww at beww.org
Fri Sep 24 16:48:20 UTC 2010

On Friday, September 24, 2010 10:21:41 am Raymond Wagner wrote:
>   On 9/24/2010 12:15, Mike Perkins wrote:
> > Michelle Dupuis wrote:
> >> The Shuttle XS35GT-804  looks interesting!  Does it have enough power
> >> to run
> >> myth properly?
> >> 
> >> I also worry about putting a 500gb disk into a unit with only passive
> >> cooling...sounds like a recipe for cooking a disk
> > 
> > If it's a thin client... it shouldn't have a hard drive in it. A thin
> > client is booted off a USB stick or a Compact Flash card or over the
> > network.
> > 
> > Try http://minimyth.org/ for the appropriate software to run on a thin
> > client front end.
> Of course if it actually were a thin client, you wouldn't be running
> MythTV on it.  You would install Xorg and a sound server, set up
> forwarding, and run the frontend on some central system.

With hardware getting cheaper and more powerful, even true "Thin Clients" are getting "smarter", often with browsers and 
other software running locally on the client itself. The CPU power and RAM of the thin clients is approaching the power of 
full-blown desktop machines of just a few years ago.

So the line between "thin cients" and a local desktop machine is getting blurry.

"Thin Client" can describe both the hardware itself, and the way in which it is utilized. The hardware of many so-called 
thin clients is more than capable of running a full-blown Myth frontend, the main requirement being graphics hardware. The 
Broadcom CrystalHD module is making full HD decoding ability easy to do with a small form factor.

Many "Thin Clients" have more CPU horsepower than the first machine I ran Myth on years ago, and these days the term seems 
to be used to describe the form factor itself and not the application.

But one thing all "thin clients" have in common, is they generally don't have any more storage than what's required to 
boot the system, and store data in some sort of network-based filesystem. A 500GB drive has no business in anything called 
a "thin client", no matter what it's actual use. If it has such a drive, it's a small form factor computer, not a thin 
client. A Revo 1600 is a good example of that sort of machine.

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