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Stream my screen to my Internet / DLNA enabled Sony LCD TV

Posted on 2011-03-20
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Last Modified: 2013-12-09
I have a DLNA enabled 40" Sony EX621 in my office. I have it connected to the net via my wired LAN and its internet features work as expected. I can also use the "Play To" feature of Win 7's Windows Media Player to play stuff on the TV from any Win 7 PC on my LAN. "Play To" sees the Sony as a compatible DLNA player and so uses the DLNA protocol to stream the media to the TV. There's also a Rogers cable HD PVR set top box (SA8300HD) so we can watch cable TV.

I also have a networked Win 7 x64 Ultimate Laptop with a 1920 x 1080 LCD on a cart next to the TV and have connected the Laptop VGA out to the TV's PC Input (audio too) and it works like a charm! The Laptop also has an HDMI out but I haven't tried that due to the lack of a cable. We use the laptop to stream Netflix and display it on the TV as well as to demonstrate various pieces of software.

So far I'm batting 1000.

I have the following question:

How do I stream the contents of my desktop PC's screen to the TV using the network and DLNA? I want to be able to do this from any Win 7 PC on my LAN and do not want to use VGA or HDMI cables (that is so yesterday!). I want to go strictly via the network.

Why I want to do this:

My office has 3 separate workstations. The TV is on all of the time as we work developing shitty software and is playing whatever's worth watching on cable at any time. It would be great if any one of us could display their PC's screen on the TV so we needn't move from our desks to see their screen when they wanted to demonstrate a problem they were having or more importantly, show us a really good YouTube or website.

Any tips would be greatly appreciated!
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Question by:ou81aswell
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LVL 38

Accepted Solution

by:
lherrou earned 300 total points
ID: 35184338
ou81aswell,

Is it possible? Yes. Is it feasible? Probably not.

To really do what you want, you'd need to have VGA signal splitters or video cards capable of supporting dual monitors in each computer, and then something like the VGA Broadcaster Lite (~$1600.00 http://www.epiphan.com/products/broadcasting/vga-broadcaster-lite/) for each computer. There's also KVM-over-Ethernet devices which could do something similar (but also in a similar price range).

The problem is that what you are looking for is a software solution (something that can read your screen video and then convert and transmit it) at the computer end, and there really isn't anything like that.

A better bet might be a permanently connected older laptop or PC, hooked to the TV and controlled by a remote desktop application.

Cheers,
LHerrou
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Author Comment

by:ou81aswell
ID: 35184428
Thanks. That's what I thought. Someone should write such an application! How difficult could it be given that screen capture programs seem to be quite common. I've been playing with A/B switch boxes and splitters of various sorts for 30 years now. I fed up with all of the cabling headaches! I suppose I'll have to cross my fingers and hope someone will develop a low cost software solution soon. I think I'll hold my breath :)

I tried to control the laptop connected to the TV with Remote Desktop Connection. The problem is that once connected via RDC, the laptop's LCD shows the local login screen while the contents of the laptop's screen are redirected to the remote computer that is controliing it. So I end up with the login screen being displayed on the TV.

Is there a way to use RDC and still have the screen displayed locally?
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LVL 38

Assisted Solution

by:lherrou
lherrou earned 300 total points
ID: 35184805
I'm not sure that you can share your desktop with a remote one via Microsoft Remote Desktop, you may need a third-party tool like http://www.techinline.com's Remote Desktop that has full two-way viewing (http://www.techinline.com/ProductDetails/Features/Complete2WayDesktopControlViewing).
0
 
LVL 12

Assisted Solution

by:PCableGuy
PCableGuy earned 200 total points
ID: 35185646
Although you seem to be looking to "Push" your PC to the TV instead of inviting users to view your desktop, you might consider putting VNC server on all of your PCs. When you want to view someone else's desktop, just VNC into it. It has free versions. No need to have the TV involved in this scenario. http://www.realvnc.com/
http://tightvnc.com/

This device seems to put a desktop onto a TV display, but I don't know how you can get it to work with multiple PCs/Users, it might be geared for one User/one PC.
http://www.dlink.com/products/?pid=655
ftp://ftp10.dlink.com/pdfs/products/DPG-1200/DPG-1200_ds.pdf

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Author Comment

by:ou81aswell
ID: 35185667
Thanks. That's pretty neat but I'm not sure it's worth $30 / month to me. I'll look for something similar with a one-time license fee. I'm also going to look into Remote Desktop Assistance. I wonder if that does some sort of screen sharing?
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Author Comment

by:ou81aswell
ID: 35185723
My last response was for lherrou. Sorry PCableGuy and thanks for your input. How is VNC for browsing the web on the remotely controlled computer? How does it react when the screen starts playing an HD movie or when IE goes to full screen mode?

That hardware solution is neat but I wonder if its lack of support for direct X means that I won't be able to see everything I need.
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LVL 12

Assisted Solution

by:PCableGuy
PCableGuy earned 200 total points
ID: 35185818
How is VNC for browsing the web on the remotely controlled computer? How does it react when the screen starts playing an HD movie or when IE goes to full screen mode? I suggest you try it, since those versions are free you have nothing to lose. VNC gives you full control of a remote desktop.


I'm not certain if direct X might be an issue with the D-Link, perhaps a phone call or Email to D-Link might clear up any questions that you might have.
0
 

Author Comment

by:ou81aswell
ID: 35306395
Well it seems that the solution (streaming your PC's video screen (and audio) to a DLNA player over the network) doesn't exist (yet).

The concept of being able to "virtually project" any PC's video screen and audio to a DLNA player (in my case, a Sony TV) using the network (LAN or WAN)  is pretty cool.

I hope that if something like this becomes available in the future, someone chimes in here and updates us!

I'm often confused about how to do an "Accept Solution" on  threads like these where there really isn't a solution but a helpful discussion. I get the impression that EE likes to mark threads as [re]solved sooner rather than later. What would you guys choose for the solution to this thread?
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Author Comment

by:ou81aswell
ID: 35452681
Intel® WiDi enables consumers to share virtually any content from an Intel® Core™ processor-based notebook to their big screen TV. If the HDTV doesn't currently include the Intel WiDi technology (some new HDTVs have the technology built in), D-Link MainStage can be added to the TV for instant wireless connectivity to a WiDi-enabled notebook.

http://www.marketwire.com/press-release/D-Link-Integrates-Intel-Wireless-Display-Technology-WiDi-Into-D-Link-MainStage-Enabling-1376390.htm

TwonkyBeam™ is a free add-on for Internet Explorer®, Firefox® or Chrome that lets you stream music, videos or photos from countless websites to your networked devices. Send photos from Flickr®, Facebook® and many other popular photo sites directly to your networked TV. Search for Internet videos on favorite sites like YouTube™ and stream them to your networked TV. You can also play songs from a variety of music blogs on your networked stereo, or listen to the latest podcast from NPR.
 
Beaming is as easy as right-clicking* on the file you want to enjoy. In full view, TwonkyBeam shows all of the available media on a web page in an unobtrusive window to the side of your browser, so you can also stream from the list or play an entire page's media.

http://www.twonky.com/products/twonkybeam/
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LVL 38

Assisted Solution

by:lherrou
lherrou earned 300 total points
ID: 35452757
Sounds promising... have you tried it yet? Do they have a demo?
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Author Comment

by:ou81aswell
ID: 35452773
I'm playing with TwonkyBeam. It's hit and miss. Some videos on YouTube play, others shut off after 5 or 10 seconds. The IE addon shows you all of the media items on the page in a window and you can then send (beam) them to your DNLA player which is my new TV in my case.

The WiDi is a hardware solution I think.
0
 

Author Closing Comment

by:ou81aswell
ID: 39706813
Although I haven't looked closely, it looks like the industry is working towards a number of great solutions to this but of course, it's something I no longer want to do!
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