So in searching I've found that LinuxMCE will not do multiple displays.
For my TV room/game room, here's the setup I plan on going with.
I have a phenom II x4 965 3.4ghz oc @ 4ghz, 8mb RAM with (2) ATI 4870's running 5 displays with ati's eyefinity under windows XP 64. Basically it turns the entire setup into a 5720x2400 display I think. But I can split it into multiple monitor setup so I can maximize a VM in each of the five displays without a border. I'm using 1 52" LCD and 4 (2 on each side) 22" LCD's around it.
LinuxMCE should be able to run in VM's as diskless FE (or with virtual disks, doesn't matter) under 5 (using virtualbox, vmware, etc...) and just whatever monitor XP has assigned to it right?
Then I would just assign each monitor/virtual FE to the floorplan such as: TV ROOM - Main, TV room - Top Right, etc... effectively running 5 FE in that room. When I need to change channels, just switch the floorplan to the correct TV, change channels and it will swap on that TV right?
I'm still wondering on an effective way to swap VM to different displays in a pinch from the remote/orbiter and how to manage sound (I guess from the main large TV only. Imagine sports Sunday with 4 NFL games and the race on... sound is focused on the main display and pretend the race is on the top-left monitor and a crash occurs. Anyone have ideas on switching the channels?
My initial thought on that would be to assign a remote button that LMCE doesn't recognize but XP would. When pressed, it would give an option for which VM would be the "main" VM and when chosen, swap with whatever it's replacing. I suppose that could be done with some kind of macro setup in XP... but I haven't tried it yet.
The reason I don't just run linux is because there's no real easy options yet such as the eyefinity setup to run 5 displays and effectively manage them, using either one large display or multiple displays. I suppose for one large display, I have a 6th LMCE VM that I boot with where windows allocates the entire display area (all 5 monitors) to the VM. That would be the easiest solution for that because I won't be switching between 5 VM and 1 VM on a regular basis, but switching displays from subs to main would be something pretty regular on sports days.
Any ideas on easy automatic switching displays between FE like this though?
For the core, I'm running a phenom II x4 955 (3.2ghz) with 4gb ram, 2 hauppauge 2250's, 2 1600's, 2 pvr-150 (for analog and FM radio) and 2 usb hd-pvr's, nvidia 9800gt and about 6TB of drivespace. That pretty much covers the whole house plus recording except when I'm running 5 simultaneous displays, but one spare digital is enough for those days. Regardless though, should be more than enough to support the above setup. Also also have 4 other front ends in the house (3br and kitchen) that work great right now.
Currently running 0710 throughout the house, but will be upgrading some of the hardware and setting up the tv room and rebuilding everything 0810 when I do this.