Accessing UK TV from abroad - Alfa Romeo Forum
You are currently unregistered, register for more features.    
The Technology Section A place to discuss technology & gadgets.

 2Likes
Reply
 
Thread Tools
(Post Link) post #1 of 79 Old 01-02-15 Thread Starter
Status: Wishing people were nicer
AO Gold Member
 
FredDibnah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The Beautiful UK
County: Surrey
Posts: 6,879
Accessing UK TV from abroad

One of my main gripes about being here in the UAE is the truly atrocious and expensive "TV packages" that you can use.

Basically the telco here is a monopoly (Etisalat) and they provide "service" which will only be familiar to those who used to deal with "The GPO" back in the 70s for telephones.....

Etisalat own and provide the telco infrastructure (all cable), the landline service, the mobile phone service, the internet service and the TV service (OSN).

I pay around 200 quid per month for a landline, a not very reliable (but quite fast when stable) internet service and a cable TV service (OSN Western edition + Sports). My mobile is on top of that, but fortunately work pays for that.

For my 200 quid, I get almost no watchable channels except for the excellent BeIn Sports which gives my endless UK footy, including live premiership and championship games and I get to see Richard Keys and Andy Gray every day.

But...

The "Movies" channels I get in English would all be a disgrace to the Blockbusters Bargain Bucket section... I've genuinely never heard of half of them, and those that I have (Jack Reacher, Mission Impossible, WhiteHouse Down) have all been running on loop for several months.

I get an "ITV Choice" channel, that seems to only show UK game shows, and a "BBC Entertainment" channel that shows random BBC shows at random times of the day.

Other than that my English language choices are the basic Discovery channels (2.. and I now kno more than I ever needed to know about Sharks) and E! (yikes!)

I've got AppleTV and I subscribe to Netflix, but that's still very US based and doesn't add much new stuff very often.

I have a VPN which "pretends" I am in the US which enables me to access Netflix and iTunes but not much else.

I can't run BBC iPlayer despite my VPN setup. Neither can I get any of the promised UK TV stations that purport to be available on the VPN for some reason. I have new Samsung and LG TVs in the house - none of them come with built in iPlayer as they are for this region and it doesnt get loaded into the Apps setup and isn't downloadable even if you change the geography to somewhere else in the menu.

Most expats out here complain about this, but very occassionally you hear rumours of a British expat who has it all "sorted" via VPN chicanery and they can get UK TV and all sorts - but when you dig deeper it's always a friend of a friend so I'm not convinced.

It's a longshot I know - but has anyone lived abroad and managed to get a truly decent setup whereby a VPN service will actually fool BBC iPlayer, ITVPlayer and Sky (where I am a subscriber at home still) that this is in fact the UK and can play and watch UK based TV?

I'm price insensitive (as only someone who has a choice of ITVs "The Chaser", BBCs "Antiques in the Attic" crica 2001 episode and "The Kardashians Take The Hamptons" can be) so if there's a box, a service or a vendor out there who does this stuff I will pay - provided it works!

I just want iPlayer really...... I miss the Beeb
FredDibnah is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Status: T-5 Days to Unicorn Paradise
AO Platinum Member
 
TheGrimJeeper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: France
County: Riviera
Posts: 38,319
Check out Scothosts.

They are now offering preconfigured VPN routers with
their subscription VPN service.

I would be wary of UAE rules on
VPN usage though.

UKProxyServer.com
TheGrimJeeper is offline  
Status: slip it into D
AO Silver Member
 
biggreenzebra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: United Kingdom
County: Cheshire
Posts: 4,094
There is a service that Alan Sugar is always banging on about but I cant remember its name. I will look for you.

Edit. It's called UK TV Everywhere but is producing a 404 at present but may be server issue as its a top hot in Google.
biggreenzebra is offline  
Status: ...zzzZZZzzz...
AO Member
 
Tony_S's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: United Kingdom
County: Staffordshire
Posts: 534
Garage

Member car:

159 JTDm Lusso

Youview streams TV over the internet, dunno if it will work where you are but if not you could probably connect to it via a UK based VPN

YouView: Extraordinary TV. Record, Pause & Rewind
Tony_S is offline  
Status: Make Covfefe great again!!
AO Platinum Member
 
Greener123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Southampton
County: Hampshire
Posts: 41,384
Garage

Member car:

159 2.0 JTDM Ti

I remember a few years ago something called something like "slingbox"

Basically it plugged into you TV at home and let you watch it from anywhere in the world
Greener123 is offline  
Status: T-5 Days to Unicorn Paradise
AO Platinum Member
 
TheGrimJeeper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: France
County: Riviera
Posts: 38,319
There are many services and boxes that
allow you to watch streamed TV.


The issue is that they are all geolocked
in some way or the other (normally via your
internet IP address) to a specific country.


The only was to circumvent this is
via a proxy or use of a VPN
in the country it's locked to.
TheGrimJeeper is offline  
Status: zzzzzzzz
AO Platinum Member
 
symon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: United Kingdom
County: Oxfordshire
Posts: 37,020
How about Free to air satellite?

Not sure whether you would be able to pick up UK TV channels from the likes of Eutelsat or Hotbird?

You may need a fairly big dish and I am not sure about the footprint of each satellites transmission.

Free to air (Not Freeview) boxes are easy enough to get.
symon is offline  
Status: T-5 Days to Unicorn Paradise
AO Platinum Member
 
TheGrimJeeper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: France
County: Riviera
Posts: 38,319
EU sat footprints won't stretch that fair.

And all the UK ones have been shifted out into the Atlantic to further restrict
viewing outside of mainland UK.
TheGrimJeeper is offline  
(Post Link) post #9 of 79 Old 03-02-15 Thread Starter
Status: Wishing people were nicer
AO Gold Member
 
FredDibnah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The Beautiful UK
County: Surrey
Posts: 6,879
No sat dishes allowed in our complex

Cable only.
FredDibnah is offline  
Status: Gormless [email protected]*
AO Gold Member
 
Paddy OPlastic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Ireland
County: Cork
Posts: 8,445

Member car:

Alfa GT JTD 2004

I had thought about renting a small Linux instance from a UK cloud provider to run a VPN so we could access iPlayer and the ITV player. Doing the sums (standing charge and hourly rate) it came out quite expensive so I decided to make more effort to record stuff when it's broadcast. If you can interest a few others to share the cost then it could be worthwhile.
Paddy OPlastic is online now  
Status: T-5 Days to Unicorn Paradise
AO Platinum Member
 
TheGrimJeeper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: France
County: Riviera
Posts: 38,319
How much is expensive?

Cheaper than 10 quid/month?
TheGrimJeeper is offline  
Status: Gormless [email protected]*
AO Gold Member
 
Paddy OPlastic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Ireland
County: Cork
Posts: 8,445

Member car:

Alfa GT JTD 2004

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tata4Now View Post
How much is expensive?

Cheaper than 10 quid/month?
No.
Paddy OPlastic is online now  
Status: -
AO Silver Member
 
KrisW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Cork City
Posts: 3,088

Member car:

Giulietta

Quote:
I had thought about renting a small Linux instance from a UK cloud provider to run a VPN
Almost all of the big cloud provider IPs are blacklisted by Netflix/Hulu/iPlayer etc. We have a couple of residential customers using our networking product (which involves transit through a cloud-hosted server), and there was absolutely no way that we could get the servers whitelisted.

In the end, we had to obtain some rackspace in the UK, and even then BBC wouldn't recognise the public IP address as being "British" for ages. I think LoveFilm or someone still won't like the guy in.
KrisW is offline  
Status: Gormless [email protected]*
AO Gold Member
 
Paddy OPlastic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Ireland
County: Cork
Posts: 8,445

Member car:

Alfa GT JTD 2004

Quote:
Originally Posted by KrisW View Post
Almost all of the big cloud provider IPs are blacklisted by Netflix/Hulu/iPlayer etc. We have a couple of residential customers using our networking product (which involves transit through a cloud-hosted server), and there was absolutely no way that we could get the servers whitelisted.

In the end, we had to obtain some rackspace in the UK, and even then BBC wouldn't recognise the public IP address as being "British" for ages. I think LoveFilm or someone still won't like the guy in.
Interesting - thanks for that. I'm glad I never bothered!
Paddy OPlastic is online now  
Status: Broken again...
AO Platinum Member
 
GhostyDog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Right Side O The Pennines
County: West Yorkshire
Posts: 25,672
Saw Kris post so scratch that idea.
GhostyDog is offline  
Status: -
AO Silver Member
 
KrisW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Cork City
Posts: 3,088

Member car:

Giulietta

That doesn't mean that a UK-based physical hosting service wouldn't work, mind you... only that you won't be able to get it for the cheap price of "cloud hosting"

Thing is, a rack slot with a UK public IP address isn't cheap.
KrisW is offline  
Status: Gormless [email protected]*
AO Gold Member
 
Paddy OPlastic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Ireland
County: Cork
Posts: 8,445

Member car:

Alfa GT JTD 2004

How about pursuading a UK friend with fibre to "look after" a wee Raspberry Pi on their home network? VPN mingebag edition.
Paddy OPlastic is online now  
Status: slip it into D
AO Silver Member
 
biggreenzebra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: United Kingdom
County: Cheshire
Posts: 4,094
You could probably do it with a site to site VPN to a UK based mate.
You would both need static IPs and good quality routers capable of IPSec LAN to LAN VPN.
You'd need a dedicated TV device - UK sourced NowTV box ? - and you would give it the default gateway of your mates network. You don't need to subscribe to NowTV but the 10 box will give you all Catch Up TV channels but not live ones. It's not an expensive test either.
The difficult bit is the IPSec VPN. It might work with a client to server VPN but there is usually too much overhead.
I can stream my music via IPSec LAN to LAN but have issues if I try to do it with a PPTP client or similar.
biggreenzebra is offline  
(Post Link) post #19 of 79 Old 04-02-15 Thread Starter
Status: Wishing people were nicer
AO Gold Member
 
FredDibnah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The Beautiful UK
County: Surrey
Posts: 6,879
Hmmmm. Interesting concept of tunneling to my own UK based TV setup.

I still own my house in the UK, and I retain my Sky subscription there too as my brother is renting/housesitting our place so it's all there.

So I need a reliable high speed VPN between my house here and my house in the UK so I can basically "extend" the TV service in my UK gaff to my service here.

What do I need for that?
FredDibnah is offline  
Status: T-5 Days to Unicorn Paradise
AO Platinum Member
 
TheGrimJeeper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: France
County: Riviera
Posts: 38,319
The problem will be: how fast is your upload speed chez vous.uk?

Easier to check out a vpn provider.
The one I used can be cancelled at any time.
TheGrimJeeper is offline  
(Post Link) post #21 of 79 Old 04-02-15 Thread Starter
Status: Wishing people were nicer
AO Gold Member
 
FredDibnah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The Beautiful UK
County: Surrey
Posts: 6,879
I use strongdns.com to provide me a DNS service out of the US. I set this up for Netflix, but will swap it to a UK one to see what that solves (if anything).....
FredDibnah is offline  
Status: Gormless [email protected]*
AO Gold Member
 
Paddy OPlastic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Ireland
County: Cork
Posts: 8,445

Member car:

Alfa GT JTD 2004

Quote:
Originally Posted by FredDibnah View Post
Hmmmm. Interesting concept of tunneling to my own UK based TV setup.

I still own my house in the UK, and I retain my Sky subscription there too as my brother is renting/housesitting our place so it's all there.

So I need a reliable high speed VPN between my house here and my house in the UK so I can basically "extend" the TV service in my UK gaff to my service here.

What do I need for that?
You'll need at least 2Mbit/s upload speed for standard def telly. VPN overhead and margins mean 2.5 to 3Mbit/s in practice.
Paddy OPlastic is online now  
Status: slip it into D
AO Silver Member
 
biggreenzebra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: United Kingdom
County: Cheshire
Posts: 4,094
Yes you would need fibre preferably both ends
Static IPs and decent routers - not Sky one which presents a difficulty in itself as they don't like people using their own routers.
Draytek Vigors would do the job. They start at about 100.
biggreenzebra is offline  
(Post Link) post #24 of 79 Old 04-02-15 Thread Starter
Status: Wishing people were nicer
AO Gold Member
 
FredDibnah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The Beautiful UK
County: Surrey
Posts: 6,879
DVD box sets I think.....
FredDibnah is offline  
Status: Gormless [email protected]*
AO Gold Member
 
Paddy OPlastic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Ireland
County: Cork
Posts: 8,445

Member car:

Alfa GT JTD 2004

Quote:
Originally Posted by biggreenzebra View Post
Yes you would need fibre preferably both ends
Static IPs and decent routers - not Sky one which presents a difficulty in itself as they don't like people using their own routers.
Draytek Vigors would do the job. They start at about 100.
You'll need better than average upload speeds at the UK end. That's unlikely with ADSL broadband but might be achievable with cable.

I would envisage a box in the UK acting as VPN server on the house local network. The normal broadband router would be configured to forward VPN connections to that box. The box could be something as simple as a Pi running OpenVPN and configured as a router. That way the rest of the house local network is unaffected. Using dynamic DNS a static IP address is unnecessary. The dynamic IP address just needs to be routable and that depends on the ISP.

There would be another box at the local network at the other end acting as the VPN client. This could also be a Pi configured as an OpenVPN client and as a gateway router with a dual-homed Ethernet interface. This would complete the private network and you would use this as the local network gateway for the devices you wish to access UK content - a tablet or smart TV for example. Again, the network access for the other devices on the local network will be completely unaffected.

Total cost: two Pi's, associated boxes, cables and power supplies. A ton?

Regarding your earlier post, I would avoid IPsec like the plague. Unless you encapsulate it, it's almost impossible to route.
Paddy OPlastic is online now  
Reply

Go Back   Alfa Romeo Forum > Misc Lounges > Community Discussions > The Technology Section

Tags
abroad , accessing

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome