The Boxee Box is making big news, but for those of us who are not rushing out to spend $200 on a new device for our TVs, Boxee is free to download and install on any computer. I have it installed on my Asus EeePC 1201n running Kubuntu, which has an HDMI output, along with my 25-foot HDMI cable.
Boxee works well playing videos from the Internet or from the netbook’s hard drive, but I wanted a way to play files over the network from my desktop. By downloading videos on the desktop, I can stream them anywhere in the house. In the past, I had used UPnP with Geexbox’s uShare application with mixed results, but I decided to give it another whirl.
Ushare is easy to install and setup. It is available in the Ubuntu repositories, so it only takes a few clicks. It has a web-based interface where you can add folders you want to share, and refresh any current shares. That is one of the first problems. In order for it to see new files, you have to refresh it each time.