My experience with HTPCs is incredibly limited! < Now that thats out of the way..
To be able to 'book' television programs over a local intranet so that they can be recorded and then replayed from either the HTPC itself, or a laptop or desktop on my home network.
To be able to record two different channels at once, coming from two different satellites.
To replace our current DVD Player, Freeview Box and Stereo with one HTPC.
So, I'm wondering what people would recommend to start with for a basic system..