WD TV Live and WD ShareSpace 8TB

Man am I perplexed. I’ve been reading through these forums a few weeks now and seems I may have a unique setup. WDTV HD Live and WD Sharespace 8TB NAS. I have broken or scratched more tham my share of discs trying to remove them from OR replace them in packaging even being careful. Looking for a solution I get these two devices. I like to make full sized 1:1 ISO copies of my discs and store them on the NAS. No problem right? Wrong. Seems the NAS has some antiquated Twonky server that does not serve ISO images. OK So I set up the network shares and browse. Even scanned the DVD covers into Folder.jpg files. Works GREAT as long as it’s not an HD DVD or Blu Ray DVD. Seems the Live can’t handle the data streams. NAS and Live are on a managed Gigabit  switch. Too bad no one had the fore sight to put a gigabit port on the Live.

Yes I know I can rip Blu Ray to MKV. Been there. Done that. Got the T shirt. Don’t wanna. If I copy the Blu Ray ISO to a My Book and plug it into the USB I can stream it just fine. Some movies select the wrong audio but I’m multi lingual so I can get past that. The USB Ports on the Sharespace are only for backing up. It would be perfect if I could plug the Live into the Sharespace with the USB connection. Two WD products that do not intergrate seemlesly. Hmm. Any thoughts on this are appreciated.

I’m also posting this on the Sharespace forum.

By the way you should see the WOW factor when I had this hooked up to a 32’ touch screen LCD TV. Major problem no way to browse effectively. I could write a third party app for that in my sleep.

Mike Kelley (not the “ex genius” one)

Well, I was going to pass this one by (since you don’t want to do any conversions) but how could I not reply to myself?  (Really?  Two computer programmer Kelleys with an “ey”?  Don’t you just *hate* folks aways leaving that final “e” off?).

So to my young doppleganger the only thing I can say is I think you’re outta luck.  The Live won’t do what you want (stream full HD) and it sounds like your NAS won’t work as you need (act as a local drive for the Live, although to be fair it’s probably more a limitation of the Live than your unit).  If I were me (which I’m not in this case) I think you’d return the Live and get something that does do what we want (Have we looked into the Seagate Theater?).

It’s too bad we don’t like conversion (I have to stop this – I’m starting to sound like Gollum).  I’ve converted all my blu-rays (hundreds) into MKVs and at high quality the picture is stunning and amazing even on my 9’ HD projector (the new Panny 4000U).  I showed Avatar to a group of folks and their mouths were hanging open (and, yes, I’ve done A/B tests and at least half of the time the folks pick the Live converted image as the better one over the original blu-ray).  Yep, it’s a PITA to have to run your computer all night long, but after a month or two you’re done and you have all that you want/need.  And my 3TB NAS serves two Live units around the house with no issues at all.

But – I hope you do find what you are looking for (and I’d wish this even if we didn’t share the same name).

Not returning the Live. I can live with the limitations, although I’ll try something else also. I’m a WD reseller so I’ll continue to sell this product to customers who undertsand the limitations.

Update. New firmware for the Sharespace with the Twonky update. Flashed update and a drive failed. Oh boy.

We’re looking into this.

Further adventures. OK on the Sharespace drive 1 had failed. RMA’d and working fine now. Also got the WDTVLive Plus. It streams MUCH better than the live. I can live without the Blu Ray menus and can select the approptiate movie file from the rip and stream it perfectly. I can even change the audio. 

Being a tinkerer I decided to try the wireless set. Wow. Total fail on wireless. While I understand the process to get wireless working, I can’t figure why they didn’t just leave the chipset open and allow a wired connection to download the appropriate driver for whatever model dongle used. Simple eprom. In order to get it working I must match the rev number of the wirless dongle. That’s virtually impossible. Most places do not stock every brand of dongle. They carry 2-3 brands or versions at the most.  Ordering one online? Forget that. Even wholsesale distribution does not list rev numbers on SKUs. Back to Ethernet for me. That’s going to preclude a ton of my customers from considering this even with the added Netflix.

Netflix. That’s another story. Streams fast. Starts fast. 20 minutes in sounds gets all static-y. Dealing with Nerflix on that for now And yes it does stream to the PC perfectly.

For my needs I still love this device. The improvements are a gigantic Plus. Pun intended. It’s being sold in retail establishments to non tech savy consumers. People are going to pull their hair out. I wish Western Digitial could include a listing of all local WDSelect Resellers who test out on these Home Entertainment devices so they could call me to come set it up for them :).

I have already replaced Media Center PCs in several home customers entertainment centers. They generally just watch movies and stream audio. So far they’re loving the space savings and raving about the device. For a new product it’s come a ways yet still has a ways to go.

Tony here suggested this as an alternative to a wireless adapter search:


Now, personally I had no problem getting an adapter that would work (I just went to Amazon and ordered this:


which worked fine) and the nice thing is that returning stuff to Amazon is painless and free if it doesn’t work.  But with Tony’s bridge idea you could sell one to your customers and they could use any wireless adapter they already had.  Just a thought.

I’ve never had any Netflix issues but I know some folks do and I know there is a firmware fix coming to address a lot of them.