I've searched through solved questions relating to this topic, but none that I can find seem to solve my dilemma. I apologize in advance if this issue is solved elsewhere, but I've looked through countless questions.
I am attempting to display a desktop properly on a Widescreen TV. The intention is to avoid wear-and-tear on DVDs (household with children) by ripping them into files and playing the .mpg or .avi straight onto the television and keeping the DVDs safe and hidden away. I took an unused PC in the home (a Dell Dimension desktop running Windows XP) and ran from the VGA output straight into the TV (luckily it had a VGA in feature). The television displayed the desktop perfectly except the output wasn't high enough resolution to fill the widescreen television. Even at 1024 x 768 the picture was larger but still had black bars on each side. I attribute this to the fact the video card is pretty old and was never intended to display on new widescreen televisions.
I've browsed online for hours trying to find a hardware solution that could possibly upconvert the VGA signal to something that would properly fill the screen. I've found various "media receivers" which have internal storage and you dump your movie files onto them and then use their GUI to play them back, however from reading user reviews most of these units are inconsistent and aren't large enough to store a DVD collection we have on our hands. I've also seen various VGA to TV adapters that support resolutions up to 1200 x 1600 however make no mention of upconversion. If they simply pass on the resolution and are nothing more than cord conversion they are no help either.
Just wondering if anyone knows of a way to make the signal fill the screen. Since it's an old PC I'm trying to avoid getting a new video card due to compatibility issues and trying to minimize hassle. Any box I could run the VGA cord through that would increase the resolution would be the ultimate situation.