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Frequently Asked Questions About MediaSmart

This document pertains to HP MediaSmart Connect x280n. This document explains frequently asked questions about your HP MediaSmart Connect.
Why can't the MediaSmart Connect find my computer (or the computer find the MediaSmart Connect)?
I've done everything to set up the MediaSmart Connect and the computer, and the MediaSmart Connect still can't find my computer. Or, Windows Media Player on the computer can't see the MediaSmart Connect . Why?
Try these things:
  • Make sure both the MediaSmart Connect and the computer are connected to your home network, and that the network is running.
  • A firewall may block Windows Media Player from the network. Reset the Microsoft firewall settings in Windows Media Player, or, if you are using another firewall program, make Windows Media Player a trusted program and make your whole home network a trusted device.
  • Restart the computer.
  • Make sure you are using Windows Media Player 11 (or greater). If you have an earlier version of Windows Media Player, the software Installation CD that comes with your MediaSmart Connect should install the WMP11 automatically.
  • Make sure that the computer your MediaSmart Connect is connecting through is not using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) tunnel. Broadcast services and Universal Plug and Play may not work through a VPN tunnel.
  • For computers with Windows Vista, the Windows Vista operating system requires that your home network be in a secure private network before it allows any content to stream to an allowed device. Use these steps to change your network from public to private at your Window Vista computer:
    1. Click the Windows Vista start button on the taskbar, and then click Network.
    2. Click the Network and Sharing Center tab.
    3. To change your network to private, click Customize.
    4. Click Private, and then click Next.
    5. Click Close.
  • For additional help and troubleshooting tips with networking please check: Troubleshooting Home Network Media Sharing Problems.
Why does the video freeze or lose connection when streaming video?
When streaming files, such as viewing a movie, I lose connection between my computer and MediaSmart Connect or the video freezes. Why?
To recover, turn off MediaSmart and then turn it on again.
During high transfer rates, as when streaming videos, your firewall may block Windows Media Player from working. Reset the Microsoft firewall settings for Windows Media Player, or, when using another firewall program, make Windows Media Player a trusted program and make your entire home network a trusted device.
Why is streaming video choppy?
When viewing streaming video from my computer using a wireless LAN, the video is choppy. Why?
  • Streaming video quality can depend on computer performance and the size of the video file. HP recommends using a computer with at least a 233 MHz processor.
  • For better quality over wireless, HP recommends using an access point (router) that supports IEEE 802.11n, or IEEE 802.11a. IEEE 802.11g is the second choice. IEEE 802.11b access points work well for audio and picture streaming, but are not recommended for video because of bandwidth limitations.
    The quality of streaming video over wireless depends upon many factors, including the file size, the position of the MediaSmart Connect and its distance from the access point (router), the type of access point, overall network traffic in your home network, and possible interference from neighboring access points. The access point may have special settings that control multimedia streaming, such as channel, protection mode, and ACK mode. Changing these from the default settings may improve your wireless network performance; refer to your router user manual.
Where are the files I am sharing on the computer?
I cannot find files on the MediaSmart Connect that I know are in folders I am sharing on the computer. Why?
Your MediaSmart Connect displays supported multimedia files that are in the shared folders on your network computer for Windows Media Player or for the UPnP-compliant program you use to stream media to your MediaSmart Connect .
The Windows Media Player does not show media files that it does not support, or that it does not recognize, such as iTunes audio files in MP4 (AAC) format, photos in Bitmap format (.bmp) or Graphic Interchange Format (.gif).
Your MediaSmart Connect supports the playback of some files that Windows Media Player 11 alone may not. If you do not see such files in the Windows Media Player Library, you may need to install the MediaSmart software from the Installation CD.
Your MediaSmart Connect supports playback of Media Center recorded MediaSmart Connect programs in Microsoft Video Recording format (dvr-ms) files through the Extender for Windows Media Center feature.
How can I make MediaSmart work with my Mac computer?
Your MediaSmart connect works with any computer that supports Microsoft Windows Media Player 11. Also, you can use any universal plug and play (UPnP)-compliant program to stream media to your MediaSmart connect. HP recommends and supports Windows Media Player 11.
Microsoft Windows XP with Service Pack 2 and Windows Vista using Windows Media Player 11 are the only supported operating systems. It may be possible to use an external media server to serve files from your Apple computer to your TV, but this configuration is not supported by HP and some services and features may not work.
How do I listen to my iTunes or iPod music?
You can browse to and play any compatible music file that is being shared from your computer. Your iPod and MediaSmart can both use certain music file formats such as MP3 or m4a. Your MediaSmart connect can play compatible files from the directory that iTunes uses within the My Music folder when it is shared. You may notice that some songs are not listed or do not play. Your MediaSmart does not support playback of files that use Apple’s proprietary DRM and these files must be converted to a compatible format, such as MP3, before they can be shared and played on your MediaSmart Connect.
You can use iTunes to convert your music CDs and files to a compatible format, such as mp3.
What file types can I stream?
The file types that can be streamed and experienced on the Connect depend on types of files and codecs that are supported by Windows Media Player, and whether MediaSmart software is installed on the computer that is sharing the files. For more information refer to HP MediaSmart Connect - Supported Media Types
How do I update MediaSmart?
In most cases your MediaSmart Connect should update automatically. You can manually update your MediaSmart Connect firmware by using the menu in the Media menu Settings option.
  1. Make sure the MediaSmart Connect is connected to the network and can access the Internet.
  2. Press Media on the remote control. The Media menu opens.
  3. Press an Arrow button to select Settings, and then press OK. The Settings menu opens.
  4. Press an Arrow button to select Software Update and then press OK.
  5. Press an Arrow button to select an update option, and press OK.
    Follow the onscreen instructions.
For more information, refer to HP MediaSmart Connect - Using the Onscreen Menus.
Can I stream a DVD movie from my computer to the MediaSmart Connect?
No, because the MediaSmart TV can only access digital media exported by the media server (Windows Media Player). Due to copyright and legal requirements Windows Media Player does not export the VOB files used in DVDs.
I get a protection or License message when I try to watch a movie. Why?
  • Playing movies that use Microsoft Windows Digital Rights Management (DRM), such as those from CinemaNow, requires Windows Media Player version 11. Make sure the computer that you are using to download the movies is also using Windows Media Player version 11. Do not use beta or earlier version of Windows Media Player.
  • MediaSmart supports movies that use the digital rights management of either Microsoft or DivX. The MediaSmart Connect will not play a movie for which the license has expired. Before you play a pay-per-view DivX movie, make sure you enable DivX DRM on your MediaSmart Connect. (Follow the steps to select the DivX feature in the Media menu Settings option.)
  • For movies that use Microsoft Digital Rights Management (DRM), the PC that is sharing the movie must have Windows Media Player 11 or greater.
  • The MediaSmart Connect cannot play movies in non-supported protected formats (for example, quicktime or iTunes purchased from the iTunes store).
  • If license errors appear, try playing the movie from your computer for a few minutes past the FBI Notice to see if you can acquire the license before attempting to play the movie from your MediaSmart Connect.
  • If you are using Windows Vista operating system, your network must be private.
  • If you are using Windows Media Player 11 and you are trying to share content from an HP Media Vault or other remote access device through a computer:
    For more information about Media Sharing and Windows Media Player, please refer to the Microsoft Sharing Your Media Web site (in English).
    • You can use the HP MediaSmart Sharing Wizard to enable remote content sharing with a network attached storage device. Use the steps that follow:
      1. On your computer, click the Start button on the taskbar, and then click All Programs, click Hewlett-Packard, select HP MediaSmart, and then click HP MediaSmart Sharing Wizard.
      2. Follow the onscreen instructions.
    • You can enable Media Sharing as follows:
      1. Make sure that you have added the folders that you want to share from the remote access device to Windows Media Player: From Windows Media Player click Library, Add to Library, and select the Monitored Folders that you want to share.
      2. Try to share again, if problems continue, enable Media Sharing in registry as follows:
        1. In Windows Vista, click Windows Vista start button , and enter regedit into the Start Search field.
          In Windows XP, click Start, Run, and enter regedit into the Open field.
        2. To backup the registry, select Computer or My Computer at the top of the list, click File from the menu bar, and then select Export. Type a name and save a backup of the registry to a location that will be easy to find if problems are encountered later, such as Local Disk (C:).
        3. Click the plus sign (+) next to each of the following item to expand the items:
          • SOFTWARE
          • Microsoft
          • MediaPlayer
          • Preferences
        4. Right-click the HME key, select New, and then click DWORD Value or DWORD (32-bit) Value.
        5. Enter the following text exactly as it appears with no spaces: EnableRemoteContentSharing
        6. Right-click the new EnableRemoteContentSharing value that you just created and select Modify.
        7. In the Value data text box, type 1, and then click OK.
          If you later decide to disable remote content sharing, you can repeat this procedure and change the value to 0.
        8. Close the registry editor Window and view the movie.
When I select a media server on the MediaSmart Connect, I get a message stating Unauthorized. Why?
The device needs to be authorized by Windows Media Player. Make sure that you can view multimedia files from the remote media server using Windows Media Player and that the device is shared in Windows Media Player. For more information, refer to HP MediaSmart Connect - Sharing Digital Media Through Windows Media Player 11.
How come I cannot pause or fast forward streaming video?
Many video download sites do not allow or support use of the device trick-play buttons on their pay-per-view video files. Trick play buttons may be disabled or may not work properly while watching a movie while the movie is downloading to your computer or server. Trick-play operations work after the movie is fully downloaded.
How come some pictures or movies are clipped on the sides during playback?
When scaling to full-screen playback, due to the TV’s overscan, a few pixels on the border of your video or picture may be clipped. There is no problem with your TV. To avoid clipping due to overscan, you may want to view those video clips in their native resolution. Use the Aspect button to adjust image and video size. However, this feature may not work for some video formats.
How come nothing works when I use my Snapfish (or other services ) account to login under Online Media!?
From your MediaSmart Connect, login using your HP Online Media Services account. If you don’t have an account, use your computer to go to https://mediasmart.rssx.hp.com/hpes/ site to create one. This site allows you to login to all services with a single account.
How can I have music with a Snapfish photo slideshow?
This is not a supported feature of the MediaSmart Connect.
How come my MediaSmart Connect cannot find my DivX files?
Windows Media Player does not currently export files with dvx or divx file extensions. To list and play these files on your MediaSmart Connect, you will need to install the MediaSmart software Installation CD and make sure that the HP MediaSmart Gateway Services software is running.
My MediaSmart Connect can detect my computer in Windows Vista. Why am I unable to stream any content?
The Windows Vista operating system requires that streaming occurs over a secure "private" network. If your network is "public" you can change it to "private" by following these steps:
  1. Click Start , Network and then click Network and Sharing Center.
    Figure : Network and Sharing Center link
  2. If your network is Public, then click Customize.
    Figure : Network type (Public) and Customize link
  3. In the Customize screen, change your network to private.
    You should now be able to stream media to your MediaSmart Connect.
What is the HP MediaSmart Services Gateway?
The HP MediaSmart Gateway is software developed by HP that runs on your home PC and serves two main functions:
  • Allows your PC to stream digital media files that are not directly supported by WMP11, such as unprotected iTunes, DVR-MS, and divx video files.
  • Interacts with the CinemaNow download manager and other services and allows you to indirectly download movies from Online services to your PC using your MediaSmart Connect remote control.
How do I add files to share with the HP MediaSmart Services Gateway
The HP MediaSmart Services Gateway still uses the interface of Windows Media Player 11 to add content for streaming to the MediaSmart Connect, even though those media types are not directly supported by Windows Media Player 11.
  1. Open Windows Media Player 11
  2. From the “Library” menu Click Add to Library....
  3. Make sure you are using the “Advanced Options” menu and click Add to add the path to the folder with your music, videos, or pictures.
  4. Click OK and Windows Media Player 11 will scan your new folder for new files to stream.
    Even though it may not add any new files to your Windows Media Player 11 library, HP’s Services Gateway will now automatically start monitoring that folder and you should be able to see those media files in your MediaSmart Connect’s media menus.
    Figure : Windows Media Player 11: Add To Library window
How do I restart the HP MediaSmart Services Gateway server on my PC?
You can restart your computer or find the HP MediaSmart Services Gateway icon on your task bar, click on the right mouse, and select Start server.
Response of the MediaSmart Connect using the virtual keyboard is very slow and looks like my MediaSmart Connect is freezing. What is the problem?
It may be time to replace the batteries in your remote. For a simple battery test, check how long the backlight remains on when you press the OK button. With good batteries, the backlight should stay on for about 5 seconds. When the remote batteries are low the backlight blinks quickly.
I downloaded a movie from CinemaNow (or other web site), but I can't play it on my MediaSmart Connect. How do I fix this problem?
Windows Media Player may not be configured correctly to play protected content. Follow these steps to correct the problem. You only need to follow these steps once.
  1. Play a movie using Windows Media Player 11 from the computer.
  2. Windows Media Player 11 prompts to download an extra component. Accept the prompt and let Windows Media Player apply an update to itself.
  3. Play the movie on your computer a few minutes past the FBI Notice, stop, and then go to the MediaSmart Connect.
  4. You should be able now to play any movie that uses Windows Digital Rights Management from your MediaSmart Connect.
Can I view media from a Personal Media Drive or USB storage device?
You can share media from USB devices. With the device attached to your computer, go to Windows Media Player and manually add the folders of the USB drive to your library as you would normally add files to a library. For more information, please refer the question How do I add files to share with the HP MediaSmart Services Gateway.
To view them on your TV, go to Server view, select the server, then select media type or folder.
Using my MediaSmart device in the Extender for Windows Media Center mode, how can I view my shared folders from my MediaSmart server (or other networked storage device)?
Follow these steps to share folders from a MediaSmart server or other Network Attached Storage device (NAS) with a MediaSmart device in Extender for Windows Media Center mode.
  1. Create a Guest account on your MediaSmart server or NAS that has user-account protection. This guest account must have read-only capabilities and cannot be password protected. On a MediaSmart server, you create user accounts from the Main MediaSmart Server Console on your computer.
  2. Press the Windows Media Center Green start button on the MediaSmart Connect remote control to start Extender mode and then use the navigation keys to open Pictures+Videos.
  3. Open Video Library.
  4. Press the info button on the remote control and select Library Setup from the window that opens.
  5. Select Add folder to watch and click Next.
  6. Select Add Shared Folders from another computer and click Next.
    The Extender should find the server and open a window showing the folders that are available for sharing.
    Figure : Media Center Extender Library Setup screen showing shared folders
  7. Select the folders you want to share and click Next.
    The Media Center Extender automatically adds the selected media files to your Library.
    You are finished.
Why is my USB mass-storage device not recognized?
The HP MediaSmart Connect supports only USB mass storage devices with a FAT, FAT32, or NTFS file system. For example, a printer or a Linux-based file system is not recognized or supported.
Why can’t I play my movie from the PMD or my USB-based drive?
If you bought and downloaded the movie, due to copy-protection limitations, playback of DRM-protected content directly from either the PMD or the USB ports is not supported at this time; however, you should be able to stream your movie from your PC. If your movie is not copy-protected, then make sure it is stored in a supported media format.
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