Hello, my name is Daniel, and I make things! Join me in this exciting journey exploring the world of computers and electronics


My HTPC 2.0

Long ago, I wrote How I Made my HTPC at my place. Time passes and things change. End of year has arrived, Christmas and everything, so I decided to upgrade my system to a more efficient and cheaper one. The new choices were using a NAS (Network Attached Storage) allowing all files can be accessed from any machine connected to the network, in this case I am using Lacie Network Space 2 2TB storage. A Gigabit router TP-LINK , so far I’m very happy with this router, although. A media player WD-PLUS Live that has an embedded Linux and play videos in various formats, even FullHD , and access online content like YouTube and some radios.

Media Center:

I will begin showing every part it:

Lacie Network Space 2 – 2TB

A NAS very powerful, relatively inexpensive and with a storage space for my current needs for backup and media like movies and TV shows.

The NAS has a good web interface, and you can even download torrents while your computer is OFF. It uses only 6W in standby mode and 12W in active mode.

You can manage your files via the Finder (I believe the Nautilus or Windows Explorer as well). Or the way I prefer, via FTP . Testing the speed via FTP I got around 30MB/s, really good for a ARM processor.

There is the possibility of hacking the device and get full SSH access, but as I do everything I need from my Macbook’s terminal or via the WDLIVE’s SSH , there is to change the hardware or the NAS.

Besides being able to access files over the network, there is also the possibility of obtaining your files by USB cable , but you will not have access to all files. When you configure your Lacie , you determine how much space is used as a network storage, and USB storage , which does not make much sense to me, but that can be some limitation on hardware / software.

Another peculiarity of this NAS is an extra USB port, where you can plug a thumb-drive or other storage device and access it from any computer in the house or even the Internet, since the Network Space 2 comes with the option to be accessed from anywhere on the Internet, through services like DYNDNS .

If you’re thinking of buying an external hard drive that don’t need to be small and portable, I find interesting in making some research about the NAS option, which is very good and practical.

Backups, backups, backups … I don’t live without them! You shouldn’t either!
Can not stand the idea of losing all my precious photos, so one of my priorities with a Storage System is the safety of my backups, which are made weekly using the Super Flexible Syncronize software, equivalent to SyncBack on a Windows PC. What I like about this program is the ability to update only what has changed.

WD PLUS LIVE

The WD PLUS LIVE is nothing more than a small computer with an operating system to playback videos and music. He has no storage, so it should you have to plug a thumb-drive, external hard drive on it or connect to the network, which will give access to shared files over the network, in my case, files are stored at the Network Space 2 connected to the router. When I bought the WD, I was impressed with the image quality, and how he can play heavy files without any choke. I watched the Band of Brothers show recently co-directed by Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg in FULL HD 1920×1080 , where files were like 7GB for episode of 50-60 minutes. I played all over the network, and it worked perfectly.

The Hack:
The WD PLUS LIVE is very powerful, but it can be much more. A boy named B-RAD , has compiled a new firmware for the product by increasing its possibilities infinitely. You can access the media player via SSH and may use it to download files, torrents, unpack large files, FTP server , to access IRC (and stay connected 24 / 7 ) and anything that a computer can do via SSH , so the imagination is the limit!
This new FIRMWARE you find HERE .

Thanks for reading.
Daniel


One response to “My HTPC 2.0



  1. I need to be able to capture analogue video though. So I can pause and replay live TV. I also don’t want to use a PC as they consume too much power. What is the best device I could use for this.

    Craig

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