Comment on XBMC

I've used all of the XBMC variants (xbmc, plex, boxee), and the official is by far the best and most well maintained. Plex only has the advantage of the Plex media server (closed source) which leverages WebKit for such things as playing Hulu. Boxee similarly allows for great simple and social support of online content. However, when it comes to expandability, features, customization, plugins, organizing/playing local media, and bug fixes they just can't match XBMC.

I highly recommend running the latest SVN, as the release schedule is very slow and lacks the features and updates you get from the nightly revisions. Just google "XBMC nightly builds" to find the unofficial nightly builds to download. Also check out the latest skins as they make all the difference in the world, the included skins are a bit boring and feature lacking. The Rapier skin is my current favorite. (available from the official downloads page).