Lifehacker has instructions on how to turn your XBOX 360 into a Netflix player.
You will need:

  • An Xbox 360
  • Windows Vista with Vista Media Center (it’s included by default in Vista Home Premium and Ultimate)
  • A Netflix subscription
  • The freeware vmcNetflix plug-in



Edit Your Comment

  1. Bladefist says:

    Awesome. I got a Xbox on its way to me

  2. gamin says:

    Vista? VISTA? WTF arrrrghhhh

  3. Erskine says:

    You lost me (and my respect) when you required Vista. Shame on you!

  4. This is pretty cool. I use my Xbox to run my music through the surround sound (via optical cable too!) in my apartment, as it picks up any music or video on my windows laptop wirelessly. This is like an added bonus, and I suspect this is what Microsoft has been trying to get more people to use the 360 for.

  5. Bladefist says:

    @Erskine: @gamin:

    I was you guys up until a month ago. My xp machine bit the dust, and I decided to to Vista. It took about a hour to change every setting to make Vista feel like XP, but now it does, and its much more stable and better w/ memory management. I ain’t going back now.

  6. Mr_Human says:

    I like Vista. Turn off UAC and it works pretty well. I like the file manager, too.

  7. ihaterabbits15 says:

    @Erskine: @gamin: really?? The article is pretty clear that this is for the 360 when used as a media center extender. Of course vista would be involved. Media center is an app that is done very well.

  8. Mr_Human says:

    @Bladefist: Currently, it’s simply cool to hate Vista. That’ll change. It is overstuffed, though. In addition to UAC, you need to turn off all those stupid visual effects.

  9. crabbyman6 says:

    I’d love to do this, but my MCE PC only has 1GB of RAM, barely the min. :( Maybe if I turn off all the fancy interface stuff it’ll work fine?

  10. sean77 says:

    The netflix player is just more convenient. Not only does it work great, but it’s completely silent (no fan or anything).

  11. ihaterabbits15 says:

    @crabbyman6: I run mine with 1gig… just make sure aero is off and you should be fine.

  12. AlteredBeast (blaming the OP one article at a time.) says:

    I’d love to do this with my spare PC (my primary is Windows XP), but that is only a 2.0GHz w/ 500MB of RAM ;_;

    I’ll just have to wait till Netflix releases that disc to put in the 360…or wait two days for a movie to get delivered.

  13. KD17 says:

    I did not know it had Media Center already on it.

    I like Vista but I can’t believe I paid for Ulitmate. I am an idiot. Although maybe asking they pop out one of those “extras” it suppose to get more than once a years is asking to much.

    Okay something weird is going on. I tried to post when I hit submit it told me to login which I was, post is gone. Went and read another story and what I typed is back in the Start a discussion box waiting for me to submit.

    You can’t mess with me on Tuesday like this, I can’t handle this so early in in the week.

    Ya did it again. Wheres my scotch

  14. HawkWolf says:

    I have attempted to do this, and while it does work, the controls are somewhat unresponsive and… let’s be honest, the content available through the netflix instant viewing thing is like all those cable channels showing reruns and 1-star and 2-star movies from the 80’s.

  15. CharlesjP says:

    Rather than going through all the setting up Media Center, just get a cable to go from video card to tv, and split the sound to surround sound. Done, no extra software.

  16. GothamGal says:

    Thank you so much for this. I spent hours trying to get this to work one night and it never did. If I wanted to watch instantly, I had to reboot and go back to XP. I just set it up and it worked. Brilliant!

  17. Doug Nelson says:

    It does work, sort of. It requires many, many reinitializations to get the license read, but then it will work on your Xbox until the next time you watch movies on your computer. Then you’ll have to go through the many reinitializations again.

    I rejoined Netflix just for this. 95% of the “watch now” movies are late-nite cable trash, but that still leaves hundreds of good things to watch. I especially like their documentaries, music specials, TV series, and anime.

  18. @Mr_Human: Or you could just use Linux, which can run all the special visual effects (which it had years before Vista anyway) on a box with half the specs required to even run the Vista installer, and outperform even most brand-new Windows boxen.

    My linux box is gorgeous, loaded with nifty bits, and runs like a rocket…on a gig of RAM and a three-year-old processor. w00t!

    (Okay, I’m done. Hey, it was necessary. ;)

    …On a more relevant tack, Netflix is sllllooowwwwly making me reconsider their service. The “play now” stuff with its proprietary BS didn’t impress me, but I might seriously switch back for the appliance. We shall see.

  19. Mr_Human says:

    @Mary Marsala with Fries: I don’t have the time or will to get onboard another OS. If I did, I’d prolly hop to Apple.