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Watching the BBC iPlayer (a good and free VPN!)

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JR8
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Watching the BBC iPlayer (a good and free VPN!)

Postby JR8 » Tue, 14 Dec 2010 6:06 pm

For any Brits abroad, this feels like a pretty big step forward in staying in touch with the UK media. Previously I have used a paid for VPN*, but here is a new and quality product, and it is free. It is easy to use too, you don't even need usernames/passwords to switch location, you just click the desktop button and in you go...

To test it last night I watched the most recent episode of Antiques Roadshow (on replay, from a day or two back). Then watched some of the Graham Norton show live...! Two thumbs up from me!

* in simple terms, it makes your PC appear to be in the UK, so the iPlayer and such services do not refuse you access from abroad.

p.s. There is a reference to accessing a US VPN as well, but as a non-techie it not too clear to me what they are describing.

It is called Expat Shield. You can read about it here, and download it via the embedded link in the article...
http://eu.techcrunch.com/2010/10/26/anc ... ts-abroad/

For anyone else who does download it, and is techie, I'd be very interested in hearing your views...

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Postby Ratpick_2000 » Tue, 14 Dec 2010 6:20 pm

My exeprience with all "free" VPN sites (and believe me I've used a few having been based in Dubai and KSA) amounts to the same - fairly useless and more hassle than they're worth.

If you really want to access BBC iPlayer et al, the ONLY way to go is throw money at the problem.

FYI, if you are really into UK TV, ashes, live Premier League etc. you can now subscribe to an online version of Sky TV which gives you access to as many or as few channels as you like. No landline subscription required.

Again, the way to go is paid VPN as more often than not, the server is patchy and INCREDIBLY slow for most activities.

I am making an assumption that you are not flaming, trolling or selling as you have more posts than me.

Good luck

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 14 Dec 2010 6:56 pm

Ratpick_2000 wrote:My exeprience with all "free" VPN sites (and believe me I've used a few having been based in Dubai and KSA) amounts to the same - fairly useless and more hassle than they're worth.

If you really want to access BBC iPlayer et al, the ONLY way to go is throw money at the problem.

FYI, if you are really into UK TV, ashes, live Premier League etc. you can now subscribe to an online version of Sky TV which gives you access to as many or as few channels as you like. No landline subscription required.

Again, the way to go is paid VPN as more often than not, the server is patchy and INCREDIBLY slow for most activities.

I am making an assumption that you are not flaming, trolling or selling as you have more posts than me.

Good luck


I hear what you say about free VPNs, been there done that. That is exactly why I am (currently) rather pleased with this product that I am suggesting. It might all go tits-up in future, but right now it works and seems to be getting good reviews. Why not try it and see what you think...

I ran tests via Speedtest.net. My local access download speed is 5.83Meg, with the ip switched to London it is 5.53Meg. That's only one test, but if typical I've not concerned with that loss.

p.s.
Flaming, trolling or selling? How can I be flaming when I started the topic? :) Trolling, would mean I'm trying to stoke a fight, who with myself... ? :) Selling? ... well hopefully that perception isn't an issue as I am an established and known quantity on this forum. But in any case that is a reason why I posted the article rather than direct links. If anyone thinks I'm on commission or anything, go and get a copy from Tucows.com or something! And no, for the very paranoid, I did not write the programme!! hehehe :o :lol:

Off to watch the news, byeee! :)

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Postby Ratpick_2000 » Tue, 14 Dec 2010 7:10 pm

Let me know how that works out for you 8-)

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 14 Dec 2010 7:20 pm

Yes I shall. I also want to have a look into what I can access from other channels like ITV and Channel 4.

It's a shame it is not available for Linux (or Mac)... but there you go...

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 14 Dec 2010 10:42 pm

Connection seems fine. Had no problems.

Pop-over ads seems to occasionally come up if you mouse over the banners, and it seems to open a new window now and again in the background to their homepage of 'news/links'. Both somewhat irritating.

Finding a programme and simply watching it doesn't get that. So I think it is perhaps something for viewing TV programmes of choice, than keeping on for 24/7 use.

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Postby snowqueen » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 6:13 pm

Speaking to my dad on Skype recently he has just bought the Sony Internet TV gadget and pays for a VPN called Lamnia which is about 8/9 pounds a month which is pretty cheap really but then that does depend on the channels you get from it.

Does anyone have experience using either of these products. We have a PS3 and I hear I could connect to a VPN through that to watch channels. The technology is bind boggling to me but would love to know in baby steps how it works.

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Postby JR8 » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 6:25 pm

https://www.my-private-network.co.uk/ is a VPN that I have previously used. £5/month

Trouble was, that we were locked into a long-term broadband contract that had a theoretical max bandwidth of 2meg, and actual of c.1.2-1.5meg

With the bandwidth loss of 'going via' the UK that went down to under 1meg, where you cannot stream TV.

So I cancelled my subscription. Shame really, as it was a clear and simple product to use. If I go back to a paid VPN, it is likely to be with this company.

Snowqueen. I'd be interested to know what the Sony TV add-on is called.

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Postby durain » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 6:41 pm

people, if you got friends and families in the UK (or US) with a broadband connection, they can host a PC (or old laptop) running a proxy server for you to connect to it. you will get a UK (or US) IP address.

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Postby Ratpick_2000 » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 7:16 pm

or even better buy a Slingbox - www.slingmedia.com and get them to plug it into their Sky box or Tivo

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Postby durain » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 7:35 pm

yeah, i got slingbox too. the problem is, slingbox is not on-demand, so with the time difference, it's hard to watch what you want at your own time!

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Postby Ratpick_2000 » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 7:45 pm

It is if connected to a Sky+ box - which you can also control through the interweb (and your mobile) to the chagrin of the rest of your family :D

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Postby snowqueen » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 7:50 pm

JR8 wrote:
Snowqueen. I'd be interested to know what the Sony TV add-on is called.


This is a link I found the other day:- http://www.sonyinsider.com/2010/10/20/h ... google-tv/

Hope this helps. They may have them in Sony Style shops here.

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Postby JR8 » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 8:25 pm

snowqueen wrote:
JR8 wrote:
Snowqueen. I'd be interested to know what the Sony TV add-on is called.


This is a link I found the other day:- http://www.sonyinsider.com/2010/10/20/h ... google-tv/

Hope this helps. They may have them in Sony Style shops here.


OIC thx, so it's not an add-on, but an all-in-one unit. Man, technology moves so fast I often feel completely at sea... :?

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Postby Strong Eagle » Wed, 15 Dec 2010 8:46 pm

JR8 wrote:
snowqueen wrote:
JR8 wrote:
Snowqueen. I'd be interested to know what the Sony TV add-on is called.


This is a link I found the other day:- http://www.sonyinsider.com/2010/10/20/h ... google-tv/

Hope this helps. They may have them in Sony Style shops here.


OIC thx, so it's not an add-on, but an all-in-one unit. Man, technology moves so fast I often feel completely at sea... :?


Logitech makes an add on box.

http://www.logitech.com/en-us/smartTV/revue

HotSpotShield seems to work well with Hulu. Looks like I'll get a gold star since I have now figured out (thanks to all y'all) how to get hulu episodes.


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