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Advisor
TODDWDTV
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎05-02-2010
0

WDTV Live and Network Shares

[ Edited ]

I know there are several threads out there on this issue so forgive me for starting a new one.  However, I've been reading online as much as I can find about this problem and now think I've found a new twist.  I have tried just about every option I have read about and either it didn't work or it only worked temporarily.

 

Here are  few bullets about my setup / settings

- Windows Vista 64 running just as a file server with a static IP

- Network Discovery On

- File Sharing On

- Workgroup names match

- Wired gigabit network

- Media Sharing On (I use this for music because it will organize by genre/artist etc)

- All other settings off including public folders.

- Media Server ALWAYS works (UPnP), never any access issues inside the WDTV.

- Network Shares is almost always a problem.

- I can access these shares from at least 3 other computers with no issues.

 

I set up a UserID / PW specific to the WDTV Live and plugged it in.  Like everyone else I had issues at first but finally got to a point where it seemed to work for about a week solid.  At that time I was turning off the server at night so everything was getting cycled once a day.

This weekend I started leaving it on.  I'm not sure if that is connected but the timing is relevant. 

 

I started having issues where I couldn't access network shares.  I would usually get the "The Network Server cannot be Accessed" error message.  What I thought I had discovered is that this problem arose if I turned the WDTV Live off while something was either playing or paused (IE something was in mid stream and the WDTV was connected to the server.  The puzzling part was bouncing the server and the WDTV would not resolve the issue.  I would have to delete the WDTV userID, re-create it, and re-add it to all the shared folders.   Then every time, it worked with no issues.  

 

However, since I thought as long as I backed out of the running file this wasn't a problem I planned on getting a thread going this week here to see if anyone had seen a similar issue.  Today however, the problem has come up every single time I turned the WDTV live off and on regardless of what else was going on.  It's hard for me to say for sure that it was turned off back at the home screen every time.  I know my wife did a couple times not knowing what I was working on.  Still removing and starting over on the user ID was working.

 

Tonight I started trying to work through the problem and now it really is a problem.  I haven't changed any settings to networking.  I did restore factor defaults on the WDTV live and tried to set everything up.  Since then when I hit network shares, nothing would come up, not even the error about not being able to connect, it just wont go as if there were no network shares out there.  This is back at square one when I first got the box.

 

Based on other threads I read I decided to go ahead and turn on the guest account .  When I had the Guest listed in both sharing permissions and security, it popped up in the WDTV instantly.... until... I turned the WDTV off and on again and nothing came up.  I bounced the server and the WDTV and for the moment the guest account now seems to be working.  I have even turned the WDTV off and on a couple times and so far so good.  Since it failed on the first power cycle I have little faith.

 

I know it is using the guest account and not the WDTV account I have set up because since I restored factory defaults I have not been able to get a request to re-enter the userid / pw for it.  It was also adding the guest account in first place that got it to work again after restoring factory defaults.

 

So:

The problem seems to me to be something the WDTV is leaving hanging on the user account for the server that is causing the issue. 

2nd to this now, since I restored factory defaults, I can't even get it to ask me for the userid / pw when attempting to log into the share.

 

I'm not really crazy about using a non-password protected "guest" account giving access to shared folders to make this thing work.  Why can't I have a PW protected account?

 

Any help is appreciated!  I'm really pulling my hair out at the random problem.  Having to stop and re-created accounts and joining with folders is not going to fly every other day.

Honored Contributor
mkelley
Posts: 3,064
Registered: ‎01-12-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

Welcome to the forums.

 

I can't help you much -- I'm a strong believer in turning off the passwords and letting everyone access the shares.  This seems to work well with the Live (and, really, what is the harm in your home network?  I guess if you have kids you don't want to see certain things I *might* sort of understand but otherwise it makes no sense to me (since your firewall keeps everyone from the outside from seeing anything).  With my setup I've never had a share failure (going on six months now).

 

Perhaps some folks here with more experience using password protected shares can jump in.  Best of luck.

Mike "ex-genius" Kelley
Honored Contributor
PixelPower
Posts: 1,858
Registered: ‎01-01-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

[ Edited ]

I seem to have a similar setup but seemingly not all the headaches.  The following is from memory; my Network and Sharing Center page has frozen on me.  :smileyindifferent:

 

- Settings on WD TV Live are mostly default: auto-logon to network shares is enabled.

- I'm running Windows Vista x64, IP assigned via DHCP from AT&T router.

- WD TV Live signs in using my main account user / pass credentials (has admin privileges)

- Network Discovery ON

- File Sharing ON

- Password protected sharing OFF.

- Workgroup names match (using WORKGROUP)

- Vista x64 PC wired to wireless router, WD TV Live connected wirelessly

- Media Sharing OFF.

- Public folders are ON.

- TVersity Media Server ALWAYS works (UPnP).

- Network Shares is rarely a problem, unless the Live turns on before the PC with shares.

- I can almost always access these shares from several other devices, apart from when the Vista x64 PC doesn't have Master Browser status.  Then it's pot luck whether it disables its own shares or not.  That requires a reboot.

 

But in a nutshell, if my Vista x64 PC is turned on first, I won't have any connectivity issues for the rest of the day.

 

-edit-

With hilarious timing, my PC has fallen off the network.  I saw an error message when coming out of hibernate but closed it, that's probably what it was.  My Asus EEE is now master browser for the entire network.  :smileyindifferent:

 

-edit2-

PC back up.  Checked Network and Sharing Center and updated the above list.  It was already accurate but I'd omitted that Password protected sharing was off.

Grant
WD TV Live SMP :: WD TV Live Hub :: WD Livewire :: WD MyBookLive 1TB
Honored Contributor
mkelley
Posts: 3,064
Registered: ‎01-12-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

Somebody here just made a post that reminded me of something -- basically they reminded me that when you upgrade the firmware it toasts your existing passwords for net shares.

 

You seem to imply that you haven't done this (IIRC you said that nothing had changed) but it's possible you upgraded your firmware and didn't tell us.  If so, you need to reset the Live completely, start over with your network connections,etc. and most especially turn off auto logging and clear network share passwords before starting over again.

 

If this isn't the case for you just ignore this meesage.

Mike "ex-genius" Kelley
Advisor
TODDWDTV
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎05-02-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

[ Edited ]

PixelPower wrote:

I seem to have a similar setup but seemingly not all the headaches.  The following is from memory; my Network and Sharing Center page has frozen on me.  :smileyindifferent:

 

- Settings on WD TV Live are mostly default: auto-logon to network shares is enabled.

- I'm running Windows Vista x64, IP assigned via DHCP from AT&T router.

- WD TV Live signs in using my main account user / pass credentials (has admin privileges)

- Network Discovery ON

- File Sharing ON

- Password protected sharing OFF.

- Workgroup names match (using WORKGROUP)

- Vista x64 PC wired to wireless router, WD TV Live connected wirelessly

- Media Sharing OFF.

- Public folders are ON.

- TVersity Media Server ALWAYS works (UPnP).

- Network Shares is rarely a problem, unless the Live turns on before the PC with shares.

- I can almost always access these shares from several other devices, apart from when the Vista x64 PC doesn't have Master Browser status.  Then it's pot luck whether it disables its own shares or not.  That requires a reboot.

 

But in a nutshell, if my Vista x64 PC is turned on first, I won't have any connectivity issues for the rest of the day.

 

-edit-

With hilarious timing, my PC has fallen off the network.  I saw an error message when coming out of hibernate but closed it, that's probably what it was.  My Asus EEE is now master browser for the entire network.  :smileyindifferent:

 

-edit2-

PC back up.  Checked Network and Sharing Center and updated the above list.  It was already accurate but I'd omitted that Password protected sharing was off.


 

A few comments / questions / differences:

 

- I am using windows media server for my UPnP, not TVersity.  Since I an only using it for music navication, I dont need any transcoding abilities.  If you know of other reasons to use TVersity, let me know.  That however is a seperate subject.

 

- Help me out with "Master Browser" status?  This term exceeds my knowledge of network sharing.  Is this something my VIsta machine should have set up? 

 

- One of your comments reminds me of a thread I read a thread about these netowrking issues when I first encountered them.  It was saying there due to the way the WDTV worked when you got locked out like this if you booted the WDTV FIRST and then the PC, ti would correct itself.  This did actually work for me the few times I tried it, but I was very frustrated because it is completely impractical.  Eventually I got things working for a week (as stated) and thought I was past the problem.  I guess until  I saw your comment about yours only working if the PC goes first (as it shoudl be) I forgot about this.  I honestly haven't tried it since my problem resurfaced.  However, needing to boot the WDTV before the PC is rediculous.  I would really have to dig to find the thread again and am not at my home PC for a few days (where I should have the link stored). 

 

What UsserID are you using to access your shares?  Guest account or a seperate ID?  Password or no password?

Advisor
TODDWDTV
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎05-02-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

[ Edited ]

mkelley wrote:

Somebody here just made a post that reminded me of something -- basically they reminded me that when you upgrade the firmware it toasts your existing passwords for net shares.

 

You seem to imply that you haven't done this (IIRC you said that nothing had changed) but it's possible you upgraded your firmware and didn't tell us.  If so, you need to reset the Live completely, start over with your network connections,etc. and most especially turn off auto logging and clear network share passwords before starting over again.

 

If this isn't the case for you just ignore this meesage.


The box is brand new.  I did 2 firmware upgrades before I set it up the first time and nothing has been out since then so I am current.

 

I did restore defaults just to try and start over to see if it cleared up issues.  Since that time I can't get it to even ackowledge the existing of the shares unless the Guest account is on. 

 

See my response directly above and the note about booting the WDTV first.  As I think this through, the way I got it to work last time:

1.  boot WDTV First

2. boot PC with shares

3. access schared drives, and get the ID/PW request

4. enter ID.  and turn on auto login in WDTV.

 

As I recall, that will get me to where I was yesterday with PW enabled access through a custom UserID account that works on good days :smileyindifferent:.  It will be Thursday evening before I can try that again.

 

The question still remains, when I get there, why is the account freezing where it has to be deleted and set back up in order to work.

 

 

Honored Contributor
PixelPower
Posts: 1,858
Registered: ‎01-01-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

[ Edited ]

 


TODDWDTV wrote:

 

A few comments / questions / differences:

 

- I am using windows media server for my UPnP, not TVersity.  Since I an only using it for music navication, I dont need any transcoding abilities.  If you know of other reasons to use TVersity, let me know.  That however is a seperate subject.

 

- Help me out with "Master Browser" status?  This term exceeds my knowledge of network sharing.  Is this something my VIsta machine should have set up? 

 

- One of your comments reminds me of a thread I read a thread about these netowrking issues when I first encountered them.  It was saying there due to the way the WDTV worked when you got locked out like this if you booted the WDTV FIRST and then the PC, ti would correct itself.  This did actually work for me the few times I tried it, but I was very frustrated because it is completely impractical.  Eventually I got things working for a week (as stated) and thought I was past the problem.  I guess until  I saw your comment about yours only working if the PC goes first (as it shoudl be) I forgot about this.  I honestly haven't tried it since my problem resurfaced.  However, needing to boot the WDTV before the PC is rediculous.  I would really have to dig to find the thread again and am not at my home PC for a few days (where I should have the link stored). 

 

What UsserID are you using to access your shares?  Guest account or a seperate ID?  Password or no password?


The userID the WDTV uses to access my network shares is the same userID I use to sign in to Windows (the main account with adminstrator access).  I simply wanted it to work ASAP and that was the quickest way I could think of.  Creating a unique account for the Live sounds like an elegant solution but I'm not an elegant person.  :smileywink:

 

I actually use TVersity with transcoding disabled. The reason being that windows media server wouldn't play nicely with MKV files (or any other format that WMP doesn't recognise).  If you're only interested in streaming MP3s, that probably won't affect you.  TVersity simply organises and serves my files in their original format, letting the Live do the decoding.  I also use TVersity to stream ShoutCast radio.  If I had a better internet connection I'd likely buy the Pro version and stream Hulu videos too.

 

When using network shares, the devices communicate via SMB / SAMBA.  In a network like that, one machine must act as local master browser, keeping record of all attached PCs / devices on the network.  There are differing opinions on whether it's a factor but, in some situations, if the WDTV Live acts as master browser due to being powered on first, the windows share PC might not announce itself on the network for an indeterminate period of time (some claim up to 15 minutes).  As Mike has pointed out in other threads, Windows Vista / 7 has default settings for master browser election that in general should work fine.

Regardless, that should have no effect on your media server (UPnP) connection.

 

My experience regarding what device should be powered on first is that the PC or device with network shares should always be powered on before the WDTV.  Certainly it appears to be critical for network share connections in my network.  Have to add that disclaimer; YMMV.

 

Again, UPnP media server connections don't seem to care as much about what device was switched on first.  I've been able to stream 2hr HD movies via media server when the network share was not visible.  I pretty much use TVersity as the fallback for those rare occasions when my PC decides it needs some "me" time.  :smileywink:

 

 

Grant
WD TV Live SMP :: WD TV Live Hub :: WD Livewire :: WD MyBookLive 1TB
Honored Contributor
mkelley
Posts: 3,064
Registered: ‎01-12-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

 


PixelPower wrote:

 

 

 

My experience regarding what device should be powered on first is that the PC or device with network shares should always be powered on before the WDTV.  Certainly it appears to be critical for network share connections in my network.  Have to add that disclaimer; YMMV.

 

 


 

I think Grant's right here.  I don't think the whole "master browser" issue means much, but I do think that powering on the Live before you power on the stuff you are going to share is asking for trouble "Hey, this is trouble.  You asking for me?"). 

 

The reason I'm skeptical about "MB" is that I think it's strictly a Windows concept, and when my NAS is on (no PCs) the shares work just fine.  The NAS is Linix, the Live is Linix, and there ain't no master browser in sight (MB was introduced in early Windows days as a way of keeping the many different variety of Windows boxes in some sort of sharing sync).

 

But if you don't have your shares setup and ready to go (thus the PC they are on, the NAS they are on) then the Live has a problem finding them.  I'm not sure why that would be an issue for anyone -- you can't possibly play from those shares until something is on, and then you turn the Live on.  Not exactly rocket science.  (And if for some reason your Live is on prior, just turn it off and THEN turn your shares on).

Mike "ex-genius" Kelley
Advisor
TODDWDTV
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎05-02-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares


PixelPower wrote:

 

The userID the WDTV uses to access my network shares is the same userID I use to sign in to Windows (the main account with adminstrator access).  I simply wanted it to work ASAP and that was the quickest way I could think of.  Creating a unique account for the Live sounds like an elegant solution but I'm not an elegant person.  :smileywink:

 

I actually use TVersity with transcoding disabled. The reason being that windows media server wouldn't play nicely with MKV files (or any other format that WMP doesn't recognise).  If you're only interested in streaming MP3s, that probably won't affect you.  TVersity simply organises and serves my files in their original format, letting the Live do the decoding.  I also use TVersity to stream ShoutCast radio.  If I had a better internet connection I'd likely buy the Pro version and stream Hulu videos too.

 

When using network shares, the devices communicate via SMB / SAMBA.  In a network like that, one machine must act as local master browser, keeping record of all attached PCs / devices on the network.  There are differing opinions on whether it's a factor but, in some situations, if the WDTV Live acts as master browser due to being powered on first, the windows share PC might not announce itself on the network for an indeterminate period of time (some claim up to 15 minutes).  As Mike has pointed out in other threads, Windows Vista / 7 has default settings for master browser election that in general should work fine.

Regardless, that should have no effect on your media server (UPnP) connection.

 

My experience regarding what device should be powered on first is that the PC or device with network shares should always be powered on before the WDTV.  Certainly it appears to be critical for network share connections in my network.  Have to add that disclaimer; YMMV.

 

Again, UPnP media server connections don't seem to care as much about what device was switched on first.  I've been able to stream 2hr HD movies via media server when the network share was not visible.  I pretty much use TVersity as the fallback for those rare occasions when my PC decides it needs some "me" time.  :smileywink:

 

 


Well, if you are using your main login and it's PW protected it shouldn't functionally be any different than me using a custom ID, and I still find myself at why doesnt my ID for the WDTV work? 

 

I haven't tried to use TVersity with the WDTV.  I did with my X-Box 360 and it tended to screw up the formating of the picture when it transcoded.  The resolution was not as good as the original file and it would double stretch a widescreen video (IE I would get black bars above and below a 16x9 video on a 16x9 TV so I guess it was really "squashed).  Anyway, I haven't tried it with the WDTV yet.  Howver, if it will pass through and MPEG endoded MKV file without touching the data, then maybe I'll give it a go.  UPnP always works, but its all about the quality of the audi/video.  Maybe I'll use it as a backup too.

Honored Contributor
PixelPower
Posts: 1,858
Registered: ‎01-01-2010
0

Re: WDTV Live and Network Shares

[ Edited ]

 


mkelley wrote:

The reason I'm skeptical about "MB" is that I think it's strictly a Windows concept, and when my NAS is on (no PCs) the shares work just fine.  The NAS is Linix, the Live is Linix, and there ain't no master browser in sight (MB was introduced in early Windows days as a way of keeping the many different variety of Windows boxes in some sort of sharing sync).


 

The D-Link DNS-321 will create network shares via NFS or via SAMBA.  If you hook it up to a *nix system it'll use NFS.

 

However, the WD TV Live doesn't support NFS, so I'm pretty sure you're actually connecting via SAMBA.  :smileywink:  

Only way to mount an NFS share to the Live is to install B-Rad's firmware.

 

In fact, anyone using any brand NAS that creates network shares for their Live is likely using SAMBA, whether they want to or not.

 

The reason the NAS plays so nicely when no PCs are present is likely because it IS *nix-based, and perhaps SAMBA to SAMBA runs smoother than SAMBA to Windows SMB.

 

My own suspicion is that the weakest link in any network is the Windows OS.  The mind-bogglingly vast number of networking threads you'll find on any forum in any language is testament to the fact they still haven't made networking foolproof.  Sadly, my own flawed network setup lumps me in with the fools.  :smileysad:

 


TODDWDTV wrote:

Well, if you are using your main login and it's PW protected it shouldn't functionally be any different than me using a custom ID, and I still find myself at why doesnt my ID for the WDTV work? 

 

I haven't tried to use TVersity with the WDTV.  I did with my X-Box 360 and it tended to screw up the formating of the picture when it transcoded.  The resolution was not as good as the original file and it would double stretch a widescreen video (IE I would get black bars above and below a 16x9 video on a 16x9 TV so I guess it was really "squashed).  Anyway, I haven't tried it with the WDTV yet.  Howver, if it will pass through and MPEG endoded MKV file without touching the data, then maybe I'll give it a go.  UPnP always works, but its all about the quality of the audi/video.  Maybe I'll use it as a backup too.


Theoretically, there should be no difference in creating a unique logon ID for the WDTV compared to using a pre-existing once.  I don't think the administrator access would or should make any difference either when connecting to shares you explicitly share to 'Everyone' or the unique WDTV user ID.   But that's the theory.  I've often been left fuming with impotent rage at things not working how you expect them to when networking PCs.

 

Give TVersity a go.  A few versions back it was crap and flakey.  Now it seems more stable and easier to get up and running.  In the Settings>Transcoder options, disable transcoding (set to 'Never').  When specifying folders to share within the TVersity Library ('Add Item'), go Advanced and again disable Transcoding by settings to 'Never'.  After adding new content, give it time to refresh.

 

I find it to be a lot more flexible than the windows media server bundled with Vista x64.

Grant
WD TV Live SMP :: WD TV Live Hub :: WD Livewire :: WD MyBookLive 1TB
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