Summary: I've tried Android PC sticks, a PC I built just as a mediaserver, a Roku 3, and Xbox 360 hooked up via windows media center. All of these were hooked up through my in house network (wired) to my main PC. My PC could play anything, but controlling it was a pain. The Roku couldn't play any of my files so that was quickly given away.
When it works it's great - but 2 units have had the networking both wired and wireless fail so I will not purchase again.
Philip James Sciarra, Amazon
17 April 2014
Summary: Recommend a XIOS by PIVOS or HTPC as an alternative. Pros: When the unit works, it's great. Plays everything. Cons: The majority of the time it cannot get an IP address, access the internet, or see network shares. This may be due to the faulty network hardware which is available on the forums. Unfortunately I cannot spend any more time buying/replacing units and will switch to a HTPC or XIOS/PIVOS unit.
Summary: I primarily bought this, so that I could have a better interface to play movies from my 2TB hard drive. It does that, and more. It's small and very easy to setup and use. I love it! The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars, is that when you turn it on, it takes a relatively LONG time to boot up. Other than that, I highly recommend it!
This one really does everything you need to play from networked external hard drives.
7 March 2014
Summary: The WD TV Live works... out of the box. Just does it all. It's WiFi connection is easy and even streams well using a G router connection. It will play every format file I throw at it. It will support TWO external hard drives AND share them on the network. The newer models come with a gigabyte network port for wired connections. It's interface is easy and has lots of options to watch how you want to watch your own media files, music and photos.