WD TV Live Streaming Media Player grinding to a halt and freezing

My apologies if this is not the best forum for this. 

I have used my unit for over a year.  It is connected to the internet and my PC via wifi and usually works very well.  However, from time to time for no apparent reason, and it is doing this right now, it freezes in a movie over the wifi from my computer then goes back to the file heading.  I click to play again and, if it does, it starts at the beginning.  Sometimes I can tell it where to start again, but often that simply will not respond.  I have to fast forward through the movie from scratch.  Often I cannot do even that; I just get the little arrow spinning and spinning without end.

Sometimes it just drops the wifi and I find that I have to manually reconnect it through settings.  Sometimes it drops the media source.  When I go to reset the media source it may or may not see one.  I have two sources to reach my PC, Serviio via the Network Share and Windows shares via the button below that.  Sometimes it sees those sources, sometimes it does not.  All in all my use of the media player has become hit and miss, hardly a pleasant source of entertainment.

My setup is a PC running XP Home SP3 with a WD 3TB USB hard drive attached to it. (I am aware of the issue attaching that to the unit itself but it works well most of the time.)  I have a high end dLink wireless router with a strong signal.  My WD Live unit is on the latest firmware.  My videos are AVIs, MPEGs or MKVs.  They all play well normally.  To address the problem I have rebooted the unit, completely reset the unit to factory settings or simply played with it.  In the end each time I seem to get it to work, but it drops off again any time it feels like it embarking on more lengthy fixes.

Can anyone tell me what might be wrong and what the solution may be, please?


What firmware are you running on the unit?

Have you tried resetting the device or setting the unit back to factory restore?

Thanks for the response Help4All. 

I am using the latest WD firmware (not third party).  I click to check for updates and it tells me I have the latest version.  If you need the specific number I can supply it.

I have re booted the unit many times, also have reset it to factory original settings.  I always seem to get there in the end, but the problem keeps recurring. 

I think your problem is that you are using a wireless signal.  If the wireless disappears for just a split second, your devices will barf; especially those streaming.  Your equipment could be great stuff, but wireless disappearance can happen to the best of them.  It could be caused by a wireless phone ringing, and other gadgets around the house.  It could be because you and 50 of your neighbors are all using the same wireless channel (e.g. #6).  (You can change to a less busy channel.)

If possible connect your WD unit via wired ethernet.  You will see your problems will likely disappear.

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Being that the case, I’ll recommend you to rollback to the previews firmware.

Check the link below for detailed information.

How to roll back the firmware on a WD TV Live Hub Media Center or WD TV Live Streaming Media Player

Please let us know if still the same. That will help us to identify the issue.

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Thank you both for your helpful suggestions.  I was about to implement one or both of them when my web reading arrived at a couple of issues which, best I can ascertain, have caused my problems.

Firstly I read that two services within my Windows XP system have to be turned to automatic.  These are Network DDE and Network DDE DSDM.  (Run > services.msc).  I do not know how they got turned to disabled, certainly not by me, but I found them to be so set.  I changed them to automatic and rebooted to have the change take effect.  In that this suggestion had been posted by someone else, clearly this is possibility for others also.

Secondly, and I don’t know why my problems arose in the first place as my WD unit worked well for the longest time, when I reset it to factory settings to cure it I failed to realize that all networking settings would be wiped.  It was as though I had installed the unit for the first time.  Once I realized this I re-established the network to include my WD TV Live using the Windows XP Wireless Network Setup Wizard, selecting within it to add a new device to my network.  The wizard involves placing the settings on a USB thumb drive, loading them into the WD unit, then returning the drive to the PC to complete the exchange of networking information.

On completion of these two items, my WD unit now seems to be working perfectly again, much to my relief.  In pondering why I had problems in the first place, a possibility is the continuing use of the thumb drive that I used to establish the network.  There is a selection in the final step that deletes the software placed on the drive by the Network Setup Wizard.  I remember unchecking that option to deliberately leave the little programme on the drive.  I thought it would be there if I ever needed it again in the future.  The trouble is, every time I plug the thumb drive into the WD unit for other purposes (playing files), the network setup automatically kicks in.  Most times that would not matter, but I wonder if at some stage I plugged the drive in then unplugged it before the setup had been completed.  That might have left the unit in limbo.  Anyway, just a thought.

I have posted all this in the hope it helps someone else having similar problems.  It is very frustrating having a great little unit that simply refuses to work.

Thanks again for the suggestions.  I am going to add hardline ethernet to see what effect that has on the speed and reliability.  By the way, my home is remote from neighbours and I am sure other wireless items are not interfering, though those suggestions are very reasonable.