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Windows Media Center pops up in Windows 8

Media Center has appeared in the latest build of Windows 8, making good on Microsoft's promise that the application would be part of the new operating system.

Windows Media Center shows up in latest Windows 8 build.
Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

Windows Media Center has finally made its appearance in Windows 8.

Users at the My Digital Life forum apparently discovered the application in the latest pre-beta build of Windows 8, dubbed 8141. One poster said it seems to be the old Windows 7 version, while WinRumors noted that it appears to be a standalone desktop app.

The debut of Media Center in the latest Windows 8 build should comfort users who noticed that it was missing from the earlier builds. In response to concerned feedback sent to Microsoft, Windows Live President Steven Sinofsky confirmed in an early September blog that Media Center would indeed be part of Windows 8.

Microsoft decided to leave out certain features from the initial builds, including Media Center, games, DVD creator, upgrade setup, and .NET 3.5, to make sure they weren't rushed out half-baked.

"Knowing how strong the support for Media Center is among pre-release testers, we still have work to do to make sure the quality and compatibility with add-ins is what you would expect even in pre-release," Sinofsky noted.

Offering access to movies, music, photos, TV, and other content all in one place, Media Center seems to have its share of devoted fans. "The feedback about Media Center was predominantly 'we will pay extra, just include it' based on the input directly to me," Sinofsky said, adding that Microsoft is as committed as ever to the feature.