Well theres an AVI Object but im assuming all it can play is AVI files. So maybe a video object would need to be made? Or possibly make a direct show object use direct show to play videos (I think it's direct show im thinking of).
The only way to get around the codec issue would be to install a codec pack on the system. You could package one of the codec packs available like CCCP or k-lite with your app.
Cool. I was thinking along the lines of having to issue a codec pack with it, mainly because, from what I understand, you have to pay some kind of royalty fee if you want your program to just be able to "play" the required file without any external influence. I use k-lite anyway so it doesn't bother me... in the end I still feel I could make a better Media Center than Microsoft, though I probably wouldn't be able to support TV tuners.
I haven't got Vista Media Centre set up yet, I've got a TV tuner and all that, I generally used to use it for recording stuff (using DVBViewer), but it's one of the things I haven't got round to sorting out yet after installing Vista. Why is it bad exactly? Is it worse/better/the same as XP MCE?
Well, it's bad for several reasons;
1. You can't change the wallpaper without changing .cfg files and stuff manually
2. You can't easily add or remove folders for the same reason
3. You can't change menu behaviour
4. You can't "skip" to the next video in a folder unless you "fast foward" to the end and let it kick off the next video that way.
Probably a few more things I can't remember just now... but you get the idea.
It's GOOD in the sense that it works pretty well, doesn't crash etc, but its ugly and you can't easily change/customize it, and it has a few missing features that I would have thought would be standard on something that plays music and videos.