[mythtv-users] 'powerline' ethernet experience?

Fedor Pikus fpikus at gmail.com
Fri Dec 4 17:19:23 UTC 2009

On Thu, Dec 3, 2009 at 11:17 PM, Francesco Peeters
<francesco at fampeeters.com> wrote:
> Fedor Pikus wrote:
>> On Thu, Dec 3, 2009 at 5:02 PM, Nick Rout <nick.rout at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Anyone got any gems for me? I have difficulty running cat5/6 and
>>> wireless is giving me grief. Powerline ethernet (the 200Mbps version)
>>> is looking attractive.
>>> Any experiences, gotchas etc? The system is promoted as being ideal
>>> for video streaming so I am hoping it will be OK. I realise real life
>>> won't be 200Mbps, but that shouldn't matter as long as it is within a
>>> reasonable percentage of that.
>>> Is there a performance degradation if I want to run two clients via
>>> powerline? Iy'll be:
>>> backend<-cat6->switch<-cat6->powerline adaptor<-powerline ethernet->two clients
>> Funny you should ask. I just bought Netgear powerline kit (200AV
>> version). The damn things can't find each other even after being
>> plugged into adjacent outlets. I guess I'm going back to wireless.
> Did you install the windows only software to administer them and give
> them the same encryption key, etc?
> I have 2 units (85Mbps), one in the house, the other one in the shed,
> where a NAS is located which I use for my daily backups. They didn't see
> eachother either, until I started the VM with WinXP and ran the software
> on them.

They aren't supposed to need software just to get configured without
securilty. Anyway, I eventually got them to talk to each other. You
see, they go to sleep until they detect active LAN plugged in. One was
plugged into the switch, so it stayed awake. The other one was plugged
inth the laptop. The laptop won't initialize it's NIC until it detects
an ethernet cable plugged in. The powerline broadband unit would not
wake up until laptop initialized its NIC and made the cable active. I
had to plug another switch into the second unit, then it woke up.

I did some tests with transferring files across the powerline link
(200AV Netgear units). I copied a large movie. Two units right next to
each other: 8.5MB/s, pretty good. Two units on the opposite ends of
the room: 7.4MB/s, almost the same. Two units on different floors of
the house: 1.9-2.0MB/s. My wifi (just 11g, no N) gives me 2.2MB/s,
3.1MB/s on a dedicated wireless bridge pair.

> They are now about 50 copper-meters (15 real meters) and 2 circuit
> breakers apart, and work fine... I get about 50-60 Mbps out of them,
> which is fine for my application. I made the initial full backup to the
> NAS with the unit on the GigE wired network, before moving it to the
> shed, where it now has been living since a few months.
> As I use "cp -a -l" (to create hardlinked copies of the previous day's
> backup each day on the NAS) and rsync for my backups, all backups are
> full backups, but the effective backup action is that of incremental
> backups. As a result it's not that much data on a daily basis, which
> works out just fine over the ~50Mbps link between server and NAS!
> So I guess, as always, that YMWV, and the amount of noise on your
> powerline will have a big influence too! (My local wiring is separated
> from the grid with a special HF powerline filter to keep my X10 signals
> in and noise out... I assume that also helps the PowerLine Ethernet
> signal...
> --FP
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Fedor G Pikus (fpikus at gmail.com)

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