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Setting up a MoCA Network for Tivo

Discussion in 'TiVo Mini' started by BigJimOutlaw, Mar 4, 2013.

  1. Mar 4, 2013 #1 of 1812
    BigJimOutlaw

    BigJimOutlaw Active Member

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    Mar 21, 2004
    With the release of the Tivo Mini, Roamio, and BOLT boxes, a lot of people are considering using a MoCA connection rather than ethernet or wireless to communicate between Tivo devices.

    Because a lot of people are new to MoCA, hopefully this quick and dirty setup information will help answer most of your questions. This isn't a complete A-to-Z MoCA FAQ; it just answers the most common setup questions that have come up on this forum.

    This guide answers:

    - What is MoCA?
    - Why use MoCA?
    - How to create a MoCA Network
    - How to connect your Tivo devices to a MoCA Network
    - Special issues (Tuning Adapters, FiOS customers)
    - Troubleshooting most common issues

    FiOS TV customers: Skip to near the end if you have setup questions.

    What is MoCA?

    Simply put, MoCA is ethernet over coax cable. It's a networking technology that allows you to transmit data over the coax cable in your home. It's an alternative to ethernet, wireless, and powerline adapters.​

    Why use MoCA?

    Because most homes don't have ethernet cable running everywhere, people use wireless adapters in their home. But as we know, wireless adapters are slower and less reliable than a wired connection.

    Unless you have a very robust wireless network, streaming video wirelessly between Tivo devices may be choppy or not work at all. Because of this, Tivo recommends using a wired connection. MoCA is a good option because it uses the coax cable already running through your home.

    If you have only 1 Tivo device, you may not need MoCA. This guide is mainly intended to help people with 2 or more Tivo devices stream content between them, such as a Tivo DVR to a Tivo Mini.​

    Enabling MoCA in the Home

    There are three ways to create a MoCA network:

    Option 1: Connect MoCA-enabled Tivos by ethernet and use the Tivo to establish the MoCA network.
    Option 2: Connect a MoCA adapter to your router. (Choose this option if running ethernet to your Tivo is not desirable.)
    Option 3: Use a retail cable modem that has MoCA built-in.

    Option 1: Connect Tivo via Ethernet
    Platforms Supported: Bolt, Roamio Pro, Roamio Plus, Premiere XL4 (Elite), Premiere 4

    This option allows the Tivo itself to create the MoCA network for the rest of the home.

    1. Connect your Tivo (one of the platforms listed above) to your router via Ethernet.
    2. Go in the Network Settings, select 'Change Network Settings' and select 'Use this DVR to create a MoCA Network.'

    That's it! Your MoCA network is created!

    3. Go into the Network Settings of your other MoCA-enabled Tivos and select "MoCA" as their network connection type.​

    (Note: Using this method, your Mini(s) and other secondary MoCA devices are relying on your Tivo DVR for their internet connection, so if your Tivo DVR is offline for some reason, so are the secondary devices.)

    If you have a Tivo that does not support MoCA, check the "Setting up a 2-tuner Tivo or a 4-tuner basic Tivo Roamio for MoCA" section below if you would like to get them connected to MoCA too.

    Option 2: Use a MoCA Adapter
    Platforms Supported: Mini, Bolt, Roamio Pro, Roamio Plus, Premiere XL4 (Elite), Premiere 4

    If running an ethernet cable to your Tivo is not desirable or possible, this option is the better choice.

    1. Purchase a MoCA adapter ($50 from tivo.com, also available on Amazon, eBay, etc.).
    2. Connect it to your modem and router as shown below.

    [​IMG]

    That's it! Once the above diagram is completed, this will enable MoCA throughout the home.

    3. Choose "MoCA" in the Network Settings on each Tivo box.​

    If you have a Tivo that does not support MoCA, check the "Setting up a 2-tuner Tivo or a 4-tuner basic Tivo Roamio for MoCA" section below if you would like to get them connected to MoCA too.

    Option 3: Use a Cable Modem with MoCA Built-In
    Platforms Supported: Mini, Bolt, Roamio Pro, Roamio Plus, Premiere XL4 (Elite), Premiere 4

    Some cable modems, such as the the Arris (Motorola) SBG6782, have MoCA built-in. If your modem with MoCA was purchased at retail, you can use it to create the MoCA network. (If the modem was provided by your cable company, chances are you won't be able to use it and this option isn't available to you.)

    1. Check your modem's settings to make sure MoCA is enabled. If it's not, enable it.
    2. Choose "MoCA" in the Network Settings on each Tivo box.​

    If you have a Tivo that does not support MoCA, check the "Setting up a 2-tuner Tivo or a 4-tuner basic Tivo Roamio for MoCA" section below if you would like to get them connected to MoCA too.

    ____________________________​

    Setting up a 2-tuner Tivo or a 4-tuner basic Tivo Roamio for MoCA:

    Platforms Supported: All Tivos with an ethernet port but not MoCA support (namely, 2-tuner Tivos and the 4-tuner basic Roamio.)

    2-tuner Tivos and the basic 4-tuner Tivo Roamio do not natively support MoCA. However, you can still connect them to a MoCA network if you wish.

    1. Follow one of the above options to create the MoCA network.
    2. Purchase an additional MoCA adapter for each non-MoCA Tivo you wish to connect to the MoCA network.
    3. Connect them in this fashion:

    [​IMG]

    Note: The Tivo Mini will stream programs from 2-tuner Tivos, but a 4-tuner (or more) Tivo is still necessary for a Mini to be setup properly.


    FiOS TV Customers:

    Your home is already MoCA-enabled if your Verizon-supplied router is connected via coax. Your Bolt/P4/XL4/Roamio Plus/Roamio Pro and Mini can simply be connected to the coax, select "MoCA" under their Network Settings, and that's all that needs to be done. No ethernet connection is recommended.

    If you would like to connect a 2-tuner Tivo or a 4-tuner basic Tivo Roamio to your MoCA network, follow the previous section's instructions on how to connect MoCA adapters to these Tivos.

    If you are a FiOS TV customer using your own router or using the Verizon router's ethernet connection, you will need to choose one of the above 2 options to create a MoCA network.

    POE FILTER:

    It is recommended that you install a MoCA Point of Entry (POE) filter at your cable TV's point of entry in the home. This helps keep your MoCA signal strong, prevents it from exiting your home and potentially allowing neighbors access to your network, or creating interference with neighbor's services. They're $9 on Tivo.com and can also be purchased cheaply elsewhere (eBay, etc).

    If you are a FiOS TV customer, a POE filter is not needed.​


    Tuning Adapters:

    If your Tivo setup requires a Tuning Adapter supplied by the cableco, the below image shows the recommended setup to allow the tuning adapter and MoCA network to co-exist.

    From the Splitter:
    - 1 line goes to the Tuning Adapter, then connect the TA to the Tivo's USB port. Don't use the TA's RF-Out.
    - The other line goes to the Tivo if it has built-in moca support, or to the MoCA adapter if your Tivo model needs one.

    [​IMG]



    Most Common Problems:

    The most common problems associated with MoCA are old or inadequate splitters, loss of internet connectivity, signal amplifiers (amps) somewhere on the line, and aged coax cabling.

    At the very least, make sure all of the coax connection points are firm.

    Splitters: In the event of signal issues (such as bad performance or devices not seeing each other), old or inadequate splitters are a common culprit. Replace any old or inadequate splitters (rated less than 1000 MHz) with new splitters that are rated for 1000 MHz (1GHz) or higher. Some high-frequency (3-4 GHz) splitters originally intended for satellite can also cause moca signal problems. Those should be replaced as well.

    Amps: Signal amps should be placed at the coax cable's point of entry in the house. However, sometimes they are not. Ideally the amp should be moved. But if that is too complicated, the old amp should be replaced with a moca-compatible amp.

    Old coax: Very old and weathered/damaged coax cable and loose connection points might be to blame as well. These coax lines would have to be replaced with new coax.

    Loss of internet connectivity: If you lose your internet connectivity when activating MoCA, install a MoCA POE filter on the back of the cable modem ($8 on ebay).

    SDV Tuning Adapter malfunctions: If your SDV Tuning Adapter isn't working correctly while having a MoCA network, install a MoCA POE filter on the back of the Tuning Adapter ($8 on ebay).

    NIM100 MoCA adapters: Old NIM100 MoCA adapters have been known to be incompatible with the built-in MoCA support of Tivo boxes. The "work-around" is to either not use the Tivo's integrated MoCA (use adapters instead) or replace the old NIM100's with newer adapters.​


    Pro Tip:

    Using MoCA setup option #2? Connect your Smart TV, Blu-ray player, Roku, or other device to the Tivo DVR's Ethernet port! Those devices can daisy chain off your Tivo's MoCA connection. (If you want to connect multiple devices, you can get a cheap Ethernet hub and plug it into the Tivo's port too.)


    If there are ideas or things missed in the guide (but remember it's not a complete and total MoCA FAQ, just a setup guide) then post them here. I'll add them!
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2016
  2. Mar 4, 2013 #2 of 1812
    Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Nevada
    MoCa is a pretty simple setup. On the Mini it should be pretty much plug and play. For the Premiere 4/XL4 you have a few options....

    If your router supports MoCa then you can just enable MoCa and both the Premiere and the Mini will talk directly to the router.

    If your router does not support MoCa then you can either buy a MoCa bridge and install it near your router, which will allow both the Premiere and the Mini talk to the router. Or you can connect the Premiere to the router via Ethernet or Wifi and then enable MoCa bridging on the Premiere. For this scenario the Mini and Premiere will still talk to one another over MoCa, but all internet traffic will travel through the Premiere and to the router via the Ethernet or WiFi connection. This should still be a supported setup, even with WiFi, because only the internet traffic will be traveling over the WiFi connection. The actual streaming and UI portion of the Mini will be talking to the Premiere via MoCa.

    One other thing to remember about MoCa is that it's always best to install a POE filter wherever the coax enters your house. This prevents the MoCa signal from leaking over to your neighbors and interfering with their signal or exposing your network to a potential security threat.
     
  3. Mar 4, 2013 #3 of 1812
    jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

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    Very nicely done BigJim.
     
  4. Mar 4, 2013 #4 of 1812
    jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

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    Denver area
    I haven't set up MoCA yet, but might with the Mini. I have two separate cable entry points.

    1) One goes to a distribution panel that feeds the coax network that the Minis will be on. An Elite will be the bridge to the LAN.

    2) The other entry point goes to two Tivos that are hard wired to the LAN.

    I know I need to put a filter on entry #1. Do I need one for entry #2?
     
  5. Mar 4, 2013 #5 of 1812
    Loach

    Loach New Member

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    Jan 11, 2013
    Omaha, NE
    [​IMG]

    When I did my MoCA install, I found the above image from TiVo to be a little confusing in that it sort of implies that you need the MoCA adapter connected to your cable modem via coax. You don't. You just need to connect it to the cable plant and ethernet somewhere - it does not *need* to be connected to your cable modem.

    I think they show it this way just because it's probably a common installation. Many people don't have ethernet ports available anywhere but their router, which is of course connected to their cable modem in the same room if they're using the cable company as their ISP. So they show the MoCA adapter being connected to the cable plant using the cable jack in that room. But of course the cable modem needs a connection to the cable plant too, so they use the coax out jack on the MoCA adapter to feed it coax.

    I installed my MoCA adapter in a basement utility room far from my cable modem. In that room is my cable drop (with splitters galore) along with a 5-port ethernet switch that's connected to my home network. So I replaced a 3-way splitter down there with a 4-way and connected my MoCA adapter to it. I connected to Ethernet via the switch and everything worked like a charm.
     
  6. Mar 4, 2013 #6 of 1812
    Loach

    Loach New Member

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    Jan 11, 2013
    Omaha, NE
    Great info on the tuning adapter. I just got a letter last week informing me that Cox is implementing SDV in my area and I will need a tuning adapter to retain all my channels. So I take it from the diagram that tuning adapters won't pass a MoCA signal? Guess I'll be picking up another splitter.
     
  7. Mar 4, 2013 #7 of 1812
    Loach

    Loach New Member

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    Omaha, NE
    But isn't there really a single point of entry somewhere further up the chain where those 2 cable entry points are split? Maybe in a box somewhere outside of your residence? I would think that would be where you want to install the POE filter.
     
  8. Mar 4, 2013 #8 of 1812
    jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

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    There is. But it is in a locked box owned by Comcast I can't get to.
     
  9. Mar 4, 2013 #9 of 1812
    Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    The pasthrough port on most TA is terrible and degrades the signal to the point where the TiVo has trouble tuning some channels let alone talking to MoCa. It's best to use a splitter like this for a TA even if you're not using MoCa.
     
  10. Mar 4, 2013 #10 of 1812
    Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    If you call them they'll probably come install one for you in that box. They don't want your MoCa signal interfering with your neighbors either.
     
  11. Mar 4, 2013 #11 of 1812
    Loach

    Loach New Member

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    Omaha, NE
    Good to know - will definitely use a splitter. I've been dreading SDV after reading some of the tuning adapter travails on this forum.
     
  12. Mar 5, 2013 #12 of 1812
    compnurd

    compnurd New Member

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    Oct 6, 2011
    Ok Help me understand something here...

    I currently have 3 regular Premieres... and 4 Moca Adaptors

    1 Premiere is HW to the router, two have Moca Adaptors. One Moca adaptor is being used for a computer and 1 it plugged into the main router to "enable MOCA"...

    So If i pick up a Premiere 4 and replace it with the one main Premiere that is HW to the router, i could enable the Moca Bridge and get rid of the one adaptor connected directly to the router?
     
  13. Mar 5, 2013 #13 of 1812
    DaveDFW

    DaveDFW Member

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    Richardson, TX
    Yes, both the Premiere 4 and XL4 can function as MoCA-to-ethernet bridges. The only caveat is that the bridge only operates when the Tivo is up, so while the Tivo bridge device is rebooting there will be no bridge between MoCA and ethernet.
     
  14. Mar 5, 2013 #14 of 1812
    Loach

    Loach New Member

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    Omaha, NE
    He could always just replace one of his other Premieres with the P4 and still get rid of a MoCA adapter at that location - keeping the standalone MoCA adapter at his router as the bridge.
     
  15. Mar 5, 2013 #15 of 1812
    compnurd

    compnurd New Member

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    True,

    But if i can get rid of the adaptor at the router that would be better since it is split with the cable modem.

    That is my LR Premiere so it is very rarely offline so the bridge being down is not an issue...

    That P4 for 189 on Tivo.com is a great deal...
     
  16. Mar 5, 2013 #16 of 1812
    kacote

    kacote New Member

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    But I have a cable box for on demand which I access from another HDMI connection and an Tuning adapter box to get premium channels. I have a moca connection for Tivo stream that needs to connect to the cable as well.
    Any idea how to set up all of this?
    Thank you!
    K
     
  17. Mar 5, 2013 #17 of 1812
    atmuscarella

    atmuscarella Well-Known Member

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    Rochester NY
    Is your setup on one TV? Do you have Ethernet to that location?

    Why are you using Moca for the Stream? I would put the Stream next to your router and connect it with Ethernet.
     
  18. Mar 5, 2013 #18 of 1812
    leiff

    leiff Member

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    Aug 24, 2005
    I have xl4 and waiting to buy mini. I plan on buying a moca adapter since Ethernet to my xl4 is not convenient. I just moved into my new house. I plan on using bridge out of xl4 to connect my popbox media player to my network in order to stream my 1080p bluray remux's from my pc in the other room. I assume moca bridge from my xl4 bandwidth is capable of this. Cable guy wired all 4 of my rooms. He didn't know about moca or about Poe filters when i asked him about it. Mistakenly I failed to ask where I should place filter.
    I live in a densely housed neighborhood but i don't think I'm worried about security. Should I be? Just as importantly- is working without a Poe filter disrupting my neighbors services? If so then as a good neighbor that's reason enough to buy one. Regarding Poe instal- should I call the installer and ask him if he remembers where it should go since he just wired my house 3 days ago. He was quite high in the trees on a telephone pole at one time. I don't have a ladder that high. Should I inspect the exterior of my house? What am I looking for? I know installer was under my house at one point. can I try without Poe filter? As I understand moca, it either works %100 or not at all. Is this right? Or would working without Poe result in choppy movie playback when bridging my popbox from my xl4 or show other signs of network reliability/performance issues?
     
  19. Mar 5, 2013 #19 of 1812
    Loach

    Loach New Member

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    Jan 11, 2013
    Omaha, NE
    I would think your installer brought one cable to your house, then split off to the 4 rooms from there. The splitter may be inside your house or in a box outside, but it's probably not up in the trees. The input to that splitter is where you'd want to install your POE filter. And yes, you want one not just for security but to prevent signal leakage that could cause problems for your neighbors. It also supposedly improves MoCA network performance.
     
  20. Mar 5, 2013 #20 of 1812
    BigJimOutlaw

    BigJimOutlaw Active Member

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    Loach beat me to it.

    The POE filter should be installed on the input side of the splitter coming into you house.

    coax to the home ---> POE filter > splitter.

    Exactly where the splitter is, you can investigate by following where the coax enters your home from the utility pole, or following where all the coax in the rooms leads to. It's possibly under your house if you're willing to get dirty. Not convenient, but it can interfere with neighbors without it.
     

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