I’ve been having this problem for a while and it’s really getting to be a pain in the butt, since I can’t really fix it. I’ll leave my comments on the WD TV Live itself for the spoiler tag below so I can get right into my issue.
So I used to stream through my Xbox 360, which meant that I would encode all my video files to WMV. WMV is a pain to encode to, and I inevitably ran up a stack of unconvertable files. Frustrating. The Xbox couldn’t stream MKV and couldn’t stream 5.1 audio in an MP4 container, so I just stuck with WMV, which was actually an awesome container, just too proprietary. So one day I get the brilliant idea to build an HTPC, except I don’t have the cash. Back burner. Later, I get another great idea to get a WD TV Live in the meantime. I bought one for each of my parents and they have never really had any issues that I know of (don’t live with 'em, so I can’t tell really). This will also let me encode to MKV instead, and give me better compression and quality options. Pretty excited. So I pick up a WD TV Live and it starts out pretty well. However, I’ve got a crappy surround sound setup right now that will only accept the stereo audio out from the WD TV Live. Except when I use that, it has this loud hum-hiss that makes it unusable. The surround will get upgraded, but it’s last on the list as it’s a luxury item. I wanted to use my crappy free surround sound because it was better than the TV audio, but not this time I guess. Unfortunate. So then, out of the blue, my WD TV Live decides it doesn’t like staying connected to my network shares. This means that I have to toss whatever I feel like watching on a USB, which is annoying when it should work and when you have 10 minutes to watch something (and have to spend half that transferring). All little problems which, in the end, have soured me on this device. I’m a big WD fan, hence the purchase (and I’ll still continue to purchase the hard drives regardless), but this product is pretty bad. I’ve noticed even the general use of it is slow and clunky. I can’t wait to get my HTPC and replace this thing, but in the meantime it was $100 so I’m not complaining. Just disappointed in WD with this one.
So a little while ago, the WD TV decided it did not like to stay connected to my network shares. Now, I’ve tried everything I could find to troubleshoot. I tried this but it says that none of my machines are the master browser, apparently. I don’t think it gets at my issue, though.
The main problem, and it’s illustrated best by the latest mishap, is this: I had the box on, connected to my stuff via network shares. I was watching something. I turned it off when I got up, even though I planned to return in a couple minutes. I remember saying “that was stupid! You’re coming right back!” So I came back, fired it up, tried to open my videos, and got the spinning arrow thing. Spin spin spin. So I’m impatient, so I turn it off and back on. It tells me my last share or whatever is gone and to pick a new one. I go to network shares, and there’s nothing. I can go to the media server option and it sees everything on the network. The box is connected to the network and internet. No connections issues. I go to network share/Windows share and the arrow just spins. I let it spin overnight, and nothing.
Now, I have no idea what triggers this. My computer is on all the time. No changes or surprise restarts. I’ve tried restarting my computer and nothing. Tried hard restarting the box, nothing. Tried both, nothing. Tried clear the saved network share info, nothing. I have no idea how this problem resolves itself when it does (I usually ignore it for weeks and then it decides to work; I sense the cause is magic).
So in short, the box just randomly loses my network shares for no reason and I can’t figure out why or how to get them back. Hoping someone can help.