How to Use an Xbox as a DVR to Record TV

By Shanika Chapman

Updated September 22, 2017

The Microsoft Xbox 360 doesn’t natively have DVR capabilities. However, it can act as a media extender for Windows Media Center which expands the Xbox 360's range of capabilities. By connecting your Xbox 360 to your computer via your home network, you can watch live TV, pause, record and rewind right from your console. You can also schedule recordings of single shows or entire seasons, view photos on your computer and listen to your music library.

Connect an Ethernet cable or Wi-Fi adapter into your Xbox 360, then turn on the console.

Navigate to “My Xbox” then “Windows Media Center.” Follow the on-screen instructions until you get an eight digit “Media Center Setup Key.” Write the eight digit number down.

Turn on your computer and click on the “Start" menu then “Windows Media Center” to start Windows Media Center.

Click “Tasks” in Windows Media Center, then click “Add Extender.”

Follow the prompts, and when asked, enter your eight digit Media Center Setup Key. Continue following the instructions until setup is complete.

Use the Xbox “Windows Media Center” option to perform almost all of the functions available in Windows Media Center, such as recording, pausing and rewinding live TV, just like a standard DVR.


This setup won’t work without a home network.