Joined: May 25, 2003 Posts: 4752 Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: Sat Apr 14, 2007 5:46 pm Post subject: Apple TV...screw you DRM
OK, so for better or for worse I somehow acquired a cheap LCD TV and an Apple TV.
The problem wasn't the Apple TV or the TV itself...but the damn DRM in the system. I run a wired network and wireless at my place, the wired is the primary, the wireless the secondary. My TV is not in range of my wired network without running a non-trivial amount of cable. My primary iTunes library (primarily audio recorded via radioSHARK) is on my wired network.
Well, damn you Apple.
Apparently you can't hook up an Apple TV to any other network, even if it's the primary wired network for the wireless network.
I blew near two weeks on this garbage...you'd think that they'd let technorati type in the IP of their Apple TV in iTunes, but no! If it isn't UDP discoverable on the same network as the streaming or syncing client, you're SOL.
Well, I have two networks. Fast wired, slower wireless. Wireless blows compared to gigabit ethernet.
Needless to say although literally it's the same network, the Apple TV only wanted to talk to my Quad through the wireless. Fine. Well, the moment the wireless connection dropped on the Quad (which has totally substandard antennas compared even to the Cube!) the Apple TV would stop playing whatever video or song was playing and claim it was "buffering" or "media not available". So obviously, well once the DRM whatnot has been established, why not be able to switch it to the wired connection IP of the box hosting the files (a static IP)?
No way to type in an IP address for iTunes.
What a damn bummer from those of us who set up our own networks. No static IP input? Give me a break.
So I started trying to grok the preferences files of iTunes to see if I could figure out where it was storing the IP. No luck. It's somewhere hidden or is encrypted. Couldn't find it.
So I configured the wireless network to forward all ports with NAT wrapping to go to the Apple TV (which yes, you can configure with a static IP). I even verified that I could totally establish the TCP connections from the wired network to the Apple TV on the wired network...telnet is great stuff. Followed the ports Apple themselves recommended.
Still didn't work.
So I blew another $50 to get a repeater so I could let the Quad join the wireless network with a stronger signal. And suddenly, being on the same network, the Apple TV works.
It is a total drag that Apple's DRM requried me to blow more money to upgrade my secondary wireless network just to make a product I had already paid for function properly. Just because I couldn't type an IP in to iTunes.
I don't care how many great things Apple has done.
DRM should not prevent an experienced programmer and 20 yr. customer from playing Hangar 18 from the Quad in the back office on their TV, even if the song does verily suck.
Drop the DRM and artificial network boundaries you dicks.
If a programmer has to spend 2 weeks to get it working, how bad do you think it'll be for customers who don't understand subnets and NAT tunneling?
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