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Why should I run a front end???

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  • Why should I run a front end???

    So I've finally got my carPC finished and in the car. I've been driving around with it in for a few days playing around with iTunes, and for some reason or another i cant get interwinDVD to play DVD's or WMP to play them...but that aside....why should I consider using a front end program? I've had very little problem navigating through windows without it. Granted...trying to double click with a touch screen can be trying at times, and so can scrolling around, but I've more or less gotten used to it. One nice thing that I can see about not having a front end is that I have my start bar down at the bottom so I can switch programs at my finger tips...would be great in case I get pulled over watching a movie or something to switch to iTunes or Navi.

    I've not really even looked through the front end programs...I'm not even sure if any of them are compatable with iTunes.

  • #2
    Road Runner > *
    Duct tape and a Bandana for the win, b!shes!!!

    My Setup:

    Cost so far: Less than a grand ;]

    Economy/Commuter cars + Computers = many entertained miles


    • #3
      I don't see an advantage not running a frontend, its just as easy to switch from movies to navi or audio in any frontend. A frontend also provides an interface more suitable for a mobile environment.


      • #4
        Most programs present data that is too small to be clicked on easily on a normal windows interface.

        Plus, a frontend is alot more sexy when showing off your ride.
        Current projects: iGmod reloaded (Latest release) (put on hiatus indefinatly)

        Unlimited Internet and gps tracking for $6 a month with boost mobile!

        Carputer 2:


        • #5
          You can do whatever you want. I, personally, like the easy 'touchability' of a front end. I don't use iTunes, so that doesn't really bother me.

          It's really up to you. If you don't see a point to it, don't use it. You can always try a few out and see if you change your mind, though.


          • #6
            I don't use frontend in my supra setup cuz I don't have a ts to ultilize the big button of the fe. Remote control is all i need (I use mousy sometime too)
            2004 Matrix XR A7N8X-VM/400 AMD XP-M 2500+, DS-ATX
            89 Supra Turbo P3 [email protected]/Abit BE6 II, Alpine M-BUS Car2PC.
            Y2K Accord Dell GX150
            RoadRunner is the best FE PERIOD
            EmoRebellion is a SCAMMER


            • #7
              Preferance. You choose.
              My set up is just for music. I use WinAmp and a small keypad for control, no need for a front end.
              D201GLY2, DC-DC power, 3.5 inch SATA

              Yes, you should search... and Yes, It has been covered before!

              Read the FAQ!


              • #8
                yeah my carPC is 50% for music, 25% GPS, 10% movies, 10% OBDII (soon hopefully), and 5% show off coolness factor. I've considered using's just that I have no programing skills what-so-ever and from what I've read it looks as though you have to write either programs or code for some of the front ends to really work well...and seeing as I have no clue how to do that or desire to learn how to do that, it may just be easier to run it without.


                • #9
                  You don't need to code anything to get a front-end to work.
                  Now, if you want to customize a front-end and tweak it, there may be some configuration involved, but not any writing of code...
                  Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
                  How about the Wiki?

                  Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.


                  • #10
                    oh....oh.....oooooohhhhhh.......hmmm.....well i may as well download one and play aorund with it for a few days....why not....Any sugestions?


                    • #11
                      Download them all, try them out and see which one you like best.
                      Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
                      How about the Wiki?

                      Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.


                      • #12
                        I use a frontend because I need to be able to handle music and GPS (and once in a while, small apps like calculator, etc) while driving. Personally, I don't find navigating winamp,etc to be touchscreen-friendly enough to be safe while driving. And switching between apps is easier when I can just press the big "back" button to get to the main menu, and then push the big buttons to get to music, GPS, etc.

                        Also, I much prefer the look of a frontend to a windows desktop, it looks much more integrated with the car.

                        As everyone says, clearly it's personal preference; surely you could optimize your apps for easy touchscreen use (skins, etc) but it seems to me that by the time you do that, it's going to look more and more like a frontend anyway.
                        But don't take it from me! here's a quote from a real, live newbie:
                        Originally posted by Viscouse
                        I am learning buttloads just by searching on this forum. I've learned 2 big things so far: 1-it's been done before, and 2-if it hasn't, there is a way to do it.


                        • #13
                          you don't HAVE to code anything, but to get it to work right in your application, I've found that a good deal of tweaking is required, and even still it's a little iffy.

                          I've found that winamp in double size mode is just as easy to use, and to get nav to work, you click on an icon on the desktop, same as you would have to in a front end.

                          DVD, same function.

                          The only benefit is coolness factor from my experiences, and IMO, it's not that much of a coolness

                          I've yet to find a Front End that handles music in the fashion I like. Most of them have been very bulky and cumbersome and do nothing more than make things more complicated when I want to listen to something particular. If you only listen to playlists of your music, then it's all good, but I don't.

                          As the others have said, play around with it and find out if it's for you or not.
                          Jan Bennett
                          FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

                          Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!


                          • #14
                            Front ends are nice since they do intergrate everything neatly into one program and are generaly more touchscreen friendly, plus it gives a more professional look imo, with a little customizing of the front end you can even make it look like an OEM display if you want, on mine I used to use a skin that matched my headunit, I did recently change it though to a from scratch design though as not trying to keep the headunit look game me more usable space on the screen.

                            For me the front end I use, frodoplayer, is perfect, it's very easy to browse all my music in a folder structure which is what I prefer as I bounce around a lot and don't like playlists. I have a single click access to my GPS which I can also see what song is playing, pause, next, and back track while actively in the GPS and it's a one click to toggle between the two displays and then one click into the menu for stuff like DVD, picture viewer, database sync, and any other windows applications I want, and going to DVD will automaticaly pause my MP3's which is another nice little thing.
                            2005 Dodge Magnum RT, Samsung Galaxy Tab install