Friday, August 3, 2012

Why Powerline Netorking has problems

Whilst powerline networking is a great idea, the reason that it is flawed and not reliable for streaming video over a home networking is nothing to do with noise. The reason is that the current protocol under Windows 7 does not work consistently.

When you configure a powerline network you will find that it will work just fine for a while but will exhibit problems in recognizing the shared resources when you want to use it. This "connectivity" can sometimes be restored by running the Windows 7 Homegroup troubleshooter, but not always.

When the connections are made, in a relatively noise-free environment, the streaming speeds are adequate for HD video distribution. As such it is very easy to demonstrate that this is a viable solution and the use of lightning-surge protector filters actually helps to make this possible. However, this is NOT what the issue is with Home Group Networking and Power Line Networking.

Hardware vs. Protocol:

I have both Netgear and Western Digital powerline adapters. Both these exhibit the same behaviour with respect to the inconsistencies of making Home Group Shares. It is my opinion that the reason that the shares do not appear without having to run the troubleshooter is that there is a fundamental flaw in the HomeGroup protocol and specification with respect to the hardware that is currently available.

This may be fixed with newer releases of Windows (and other operating systems) and the revision of the networking specifications and protocol. However, at the present time IT DOES NOT WORK!


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