TV via the Internet as an alternative to satellite

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Smart DNS

I use UnoTelly. It is like OverPlay but unlike (correct me if I am wrong) offers dynamic DNS additionally. Which means that for Netflix only I can switch between all Netflix regions (UK, US, Brazil...), where for example US has a broader offer of movies. All in HD.

 

My 90cm dish isnt enough for Astra 2E in Berlin;(

 

Cool rundown! Anyway, just wanted to say that what you described is not really dynamic DNS, which is something a bit different (explained in the last page extensively), but UnoTelly's Netflix region changer which is cool anyway. OverPlay also do this, and I have to admit it is quite amazing. For us Netflix customers, it really makes a difference.

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Does this have to do with entering the proper ZIP Code + City, State? I "have" an address (my sister's) in the US, so it's hopefully not so much a concern.

 

Roku 3 can be had from amazon.com for 99€ including shipping and customs.

 

One last question:

 

Is Roku content based on purchase location or registration or both?

 

I believe your sisters address will be sufficient, but the location information is based on your IP address. Even if you bought a US Roku box over to Germany, and used a US address in their admin section, it will not offer you the US channels here. The trick is to make sure you have the Smart DNS service working first, and have this before you create the Roku account. This was a key mistake I made and resulted in significant hairloss. I created the Roku account earlier, and had to cancel it, and create a new one with Smart DNS. Then it worked.

 

So, it is as your last question asked, a bit of both. You need to buy the Roku box from the US so that it has American firmware, and you need a Smart DNS service in Germany during registration and usage.

 

It does work great though, and I use mine daily as my main platform for Netflix and Hulu Plus. But if you go for it, make sure you follow those instructions I posted to the letter, in exactly the same order. If you do make mistakes, you can always start from the beginning, but that may mean cancelling a Roku account and creating a new one.

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Well, here is something cool from OverPlay. I was asking them yesterday about this and today they launch it on the world. Add this website to your home-screen on your iPhone or Android phone, and you can easily change between all the different locales for Netflix.

https://www.overplay.net/mobile/smartdns

 

I believe there is also a button that appears when your IP address has changed to quickly activate your new IP address. They said they would like to automate this in the future - if possible, but this is certainly a good start.

 

By the way ovbg thanks for this link. I was going to go down the MyFritz route but this link on my phone is more than easy enough. The phone is always on my person, 2 clicks and its all done.

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I don't know if you have a family or other people living in your home, but if you are not home and they want to watch TV, then you can't enable it for them from your mobile, unless you are in your home network.

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You can't update Overplay outside of your home network, but why not just bookmark overplay.net and your wife or anyone else who has access to a browswer at home will be able to do it in 3 clicks. Even my technology averse other half has managed to figure it out. Or you could set up dynamic DNS to remove any future requirement for human intervention.

But it really is time Overplay released an app that automated the process, maybe we all need to start petitioning them?

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Yea, when I'm travelling my girlfriend knows how to refresh overplay on the laptop so it's not such a big issue (no kids yet). But because we do all our viewing via the PS3 its handy to be able to do the refresh on my handy and not start up the laptop. If I can be arsed at some point I'll do the dynamic DNS but for the moment the smartphone option is easy enough.

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There is already php script that automates the process, but for many people it can be an issue to have a box running on their home network 24/7. Prior to the Dynamic DNS solution I used to run this as a cron job on my NAS server:

 

 

http://www.overplay.net/api/user/ddwrt/update_smartdns.php?user=<username>&pass=<password>

 

You could even make this a browser bookmark on your phone/Lappie/Maccie to make it a one-click solution.

 

Note that Overplay can't really do any more than this, as they need your local IP address to make the service assignment. Only you (or your home network) has access to that unless it is translated from a URL, which is what dynamic DNS allocation gives you.

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But because we do all our viewing via the PS3 its handy to be able to do the refresh on my handy and not start up the laptop.

 

So you're not talking about refreshing on your mobile outside of the network that Overplay is set up on?

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But it really is time Overplay released an app that automated the process, maybe we all need to start petitioning them?

 

Actually, there is a dedicated iOS app in the works right now. I know they would like to have it fully automated from the app from the get go, but they may be hindered by Apple's policies at the approval stafe. Still, my fingers are crossed. Don't be afraid to add your voice to the group requesting it. The more, the better.

 

 

There is a php script that automates the process, but for many people it can be an issue to have a box running on their home network 24/7. Prior to the Dynamic DNS solution I used to run this as a cron job on my NAS server:

 

 

http://www.overplay.net/api/user/ddwrt/update_smartdns.php?user=<username>&pass=<password>

 

You could even make this a browser bookmark on your phone/Lappie/Maccie to make it a one-click solution.

 

I used to do that as well, and it worked perfectly. What I was thinking was a possibility to have a Raspberry Pi to run a cron job or equivalent scheduled task, as this could be a good, low cost 24/7 option.

 

Obviously it would be too complicated for the average person to set up, but there could be a bit of pocket money for someone who wants to quickly put one together in a case and pre-configured, then sell on...

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So you're not talking about refreshing on your mobile outside of the network that Overplay is set up on?

 

Nope. I can't imagine when that would be needed (aside from kids unable to do it for themselves)? Hence all the talk of Dynamic DNS and php scripts flummoxing me a bit - refreshing each day only takes a few seconds.

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I set up the DynDNS refresh through the MyFritz option on the Fritz Box and entered the box's address into the Overplay site. I need to relook at it, since it never seemed to work. Pity, looked a neat solution.

 

RT

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I think the reason is that you have to open up port 80 so that they can ping your machine. It's the reason I opened and then closed an account at noip.com. I didn't want to be pingable.

 

I ended up creating a html page (that runs on a machine I have running 24/7) that refreshes the IP every morning at 6am (an hour after my IP gets updated).

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You might also want to remove the automated break/make the internet connection setting on the router. Despite my previous whining that many if not most Telco providers force this anyway, less and less are actually doing so these days, and certainly anyone with media (TV) services from their provider or IP Telephony is less likely to suffer from the automatic break. You may then find your IP address only changes if there is a forced connection interruption (such as router reboot) or circuit failure, obviating the need for regular refresh of the SmartDNS service.

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Hi,

 

 

I didn't want to be pingable.

Nope, you do not need to be pingable, nor do you have to open any port for them.

 

@Rockthrust: Overplay autoupdate doesn't work for me (and another forum member) since aprox 3 days, either.

 

Problem has been reported to overplay, I (and the other forum member, too) am awaiting a response from them.

 

So, your setup might be correct, but wait until somebody with a working environment reports that Overplay has fixed their current glitch before giving up.

 

Cheers

Franklan

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@Franklan - Thanks for that, since, yes, it seemed to work to begin with. I'll recheck the settings anyway (I followed your very clear how-to).

 

@YL6 - Is the Deutsche Telekom daily DSL forced restart at 04:00am something I can request they stop doing (ideally through their online service portal)?

 

RT

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I ended up creating a html page (that runs on a machine I have running 24/7) that refreshes the IP every morning at 6am (an hour after my IP gets updated).

 

That sounds like a pretty slick solution, but surely you don't need whichever machine the script is running on to be on and consuming power 24/7? Pretty sure there's a power scheduler in most of the OSs

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Nope. I can't imagine when that would be needed (aside from kids unable to do it for themselves)? Hence all the talk of Dynamic DNS and php scripts flummoxing me a bit - refreshing each day only takes a few seconds.

 

I can understand this. The web-app is indeed pretty easy. For the last three or so days, the DDNS automated method hasn't been working. When this happened in the past, I became quite frustrated, but this time around I found the web-app almost good enough. Ok, I still prefer it fully automated, but the web-app is good enough for me that I recommend it to anyone who doesn't want the technical headache of DDNS, but want's something better than the usual website.

 

 

You might also want to remove the automated break/make the internet connection setting on the router. Despite my previous whining that many if not most Telco providers force this anyway, less and less are actually doing so these days, and certainly anyone with media (TV) services from their provider or IP Telephony is less likely to suffer from the automatic break. You may then find your IP address only changes if there is a forced connection interruption (such as router reboot) or circuit failure, obviating the need for regular refresh of the SmartDNS service.

 

This sounds really interesting. Any idea where would this be in the endless menus of the fritz!box 7390?

 

 

 

Problem has been reported to overplay, I (and the other forum member, too) am awaiting a response from them.

 

OverPlay have reported to me that they have fixed the problem. Will test it tomorrow morning, but I am hopeful things are going to be automated again.

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I ended up creating a html page (that runs on a machine I have running 24/7) that refreshes the IP every morning at 6am (an hour after my IP gets updated).

 

This sounds really interesting Derek.

 

Is there any reason this can't work from a mobile browser? My idea being that many of us have old Android or iOS smart phones lying around. I certainly have an old iPhone 3Gs that never gets used. These phones use very little power with the screen off, so is there any way this could be running in the background here, or would the screen need to be on 24/7 as well?

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That sounds like a pretty slick solution, but surely you don't need whichever machine the script is running on to be on and consuming power 24/7? Pretty sure there's a power scheduler in most of the OSs

 

The machine was already running 24/7 anyway :) It has multiple roles.

 

 

This sounds really interesting Derek.

 

Is there any reason this can't work from a mobile browser? My idea being that many of us have old Android or iOS smart phones lying around. I certainly have an old iPhone 3Gs that never gets used. These phones use very little power with the screen off, so is there any way this could be running in the background here, or would the screen need to be on 24/7 as well?

 

Sure it could work on a mobile browser. I can post the HTML in here if anyone wants it.

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