I’m in the process of making my DVDs available from my home theater PC via Windows Media Center on Windows Vista.  I’m testing out AnyDVD from SlySoft (their support policy is changing as of the 1st of the year).  What I want to be able to do is rip my DVDs, HD DVDs, and Blu-Ray Discs to the computer and to be able to view them from the HTPC, XBOX 360s, and PlayStation 3s.  One step in this direction is to be able to see all the DVDs from within Media Center.

Microsoft has actually implemented this on Windows Vista (not Windows XP) but for some reason has not chosen to expose it in the interface.  The only way to see your DVD library is by editing the registry.  Here’s a summary of the instructions:

  1. Locate and then click the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Media Center\Settings\DvdSettings
  2. Right-click ShowGallery and then click Modify.
  3. Replace the contents (most likely Play) with Gallery.

Once I did this, DVD Library appeared in TV & Movies instead of Play DVD.  With Virtual CloneDrive from SlySoft, your ISO files can appear as a DVD, HD DVD, or Blu-Ray drive which will then show up in Media Center.

You can find the full instructions for this on Microsoft’s web site.